The papers of Harry Cassidy

The Champlain Society has recently published a selection of papers from the University of Toronto Archives.   The Papers of Harry Cassidy and Beatrice Pearce. The Courtship Years 1917-1925 (General Series Volume 70; 2009) contains letters and diaries written by former professor of social work, Harry Cassidy  to Beatrice Pearce before their marriage in 1925.  Professor Cassidy was chair of the School of Social Work from 1945 to his death in 1951.    The papers were donated to the University of Toronto Library by his widow, Beatrice Pearce Cassidy, in 1962 and transferred to the University Archives in 1972.

 The author, Prof. Keith Walden of Trent University, spent several years in the University Archives sifting through the more than 80 boxes of personal papers of the late Professor Harry Cassidy (1900-1951) contained in accession number B1972-0022.    This publication contains approximately 530 pieces of correspondence and five volumes of diaries  charting"… the evolution of their courtship, illuminating the different stages of their growing commitment and their negotiation of terms upon which matrimony was possible. It documents their transformation into middle-class professionals, eager to play their parts in making the world a better place. Harry's journey from lowly private in the trenches of France to sophisticated scholar at home in the company of Washington's elite, from rural conservative to left-wing progressive, is particularly dramatic, but Bea's maturation as a daughter preparing to leave home and as a nurse ready to take up serious responsibilities is no less significant. Perhaps most importantly, the volume demonstrates how these larger processes intersected with day-to-day concerns that marked one of the most transformative periods of the twentieth century." [Quoted from the Champlain Society web site]