Fonds AR281 - Frank and Cecilia Sylvester family fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

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Frank and Cecilia Sylvester family fonds

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  • ca. 1854-1950 (Creation)
    Sylvester, Frank and Cecilia (family)

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Physical description

30 cm of textual records;269 photographs

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Biographical history

Frank Sylvester (1837-1908) and the family of Cecelia Davies (1848-1935) were active figures in the early Victoria B.C. establishment. They were among the first Jewish arrivals in Victoria and were important to the founding of the Jewish congregation. Frank Sylvester travelled to Victoria from San Francisco in 1858 en route to the Fraser River gold fields, then settled in Victoria in 1863. He joined the auction firm of Joshua Davies and, in 1869, he married Davies daughter, Cecelia, who had moved to Victoria with her parents in 1863. After 15 years at the Davies firm, Sylvester began his own accounting business. Sylvester was prominent in the Victoria Fire Department, the Natural History Society, the Historical Society, and the AOUW. Cecelia Davies Sylvester (1848-1935) was born in Sidney, Australia and moved with her parents to San Francisco, and finally to Victoria in 1863. She was a member of the Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire, and was active in charitable organizations and the Jewish community, and was on the board of the Royal Jubilee Hospital, which her father helped found. The Sylvesters had 8 children: Elizabeth, Lousie, william, Clarence, May, Jesse, Rachel and Ruby. Their daughter, Ruby Florence Sylvester, married Lawrence P. Macrae, a descendant of David Mcrae.

Custodial history

Lawrence and Ruby Macrae collected and maintained their family archives.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of 4 series: the Frank Sylvester series, ca. 1862-1908; the Cecelia Davies Sylvester series, ca. 1854-1928; Family ephemera series, 1867-1918, and Photographs, ca. 1870-1950. The Frank Sylvester series includes: cannery contracts, legal invoices, lecture manuscripts, and a diary. The Cecelia Davies Sylvester series includes: an autograph book, and scrapbooks containing clippings, photographs and ephemera. The Family ephemera series includes: biographical information, documents, pamphlets and publications. The Photographs series includes: photographs, negatives, and glass plate negatives.

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Inventory available with series and file level control.

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BCAUL control number: UVICARCH-340

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