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Delta Museum and Archives Society Edgar Dunning fonds
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Edgar Dunning fonds

  • CA DMA CR-115
  • Fonds
  • 1830-1983, predominant 1930-1980

The fonds consists of Mr. Dunning's family and business records; records accumulated as a member of various community organizations; and documents, manuscripts, and photographs resulting from Edgar's work for the Delta newspaper, the Optimist, and his interest in Delta community events and history. Family records include correspondence and legal records regarding the property on 48th Avenue and Delta Street, as well as financial and educational certificates. A large series of memorabilia includes invitations and other ephemera, which Edgar accumulated as publisher and reporter for the Optimist and as active community member. Business records are largely from the Optimist printing business, and include examples of print products such as invitations, programs, letterheads, tickets, municipal reports, etc., which were printed for local people and businesses of Delta. A small series of Optimist newspaper records include lists of subscribers from the 1940s. The fonds includes a sample of Edgar's writings for the Optimist on historical topics, plus a larger group of manuscripts that have been edited by him in his capacity as editor of the Optimist and as an interested and knowledgeable local historian. The fonds also consists of minutes of meetings, correspondence, reports, etc. accumulated by Edgar as a member of the Delta Community Band, various centennial committees, the Delta Historical and Museum Society, and other organizations. Edgar is a talented amateur photographer, and his photograph collection reflects his work as a reporter and his interest in the people and events of Delta. The fonds has been arranged in the following series: Centennial committees records; Delta Community Band records; Other society and committee records; Family papers; Manuscripts; Memorabilia; The Optimist (newspaper) records; The Optimist (printers) records; Photographs; Reference files.

Dunning, Edgar, 1910-2010

Records of committees planning centenary celebrations

Series consists of the records received by Edgar Dunning as a member of the executive of the Delta Centennial (1979) Committee, which planned the projects and celebrations for the District Municipality of Delta centenary in 1979; the Local Centennial Celebration Committee which planned activities to mark Canada's 100th Birthday in 1967; and the Centennial '71 Committee, which was the local planning committee for the British Columbia Centennial in 1971. Records include meeting agendas and minutes, memoranda, correspondence, and promotional material.

Recognition - cards and certificates

Series consists of certificates of recognition awarded to Edgar Dunning for his work and volunteering in the Delta community, certificates and cards recognizing Edgar Dunning's 90th, 99th, 99.5th and 100th birthdays, and correspondence wishing Edgar Dunning a happy birthday.

Manuscripts

Series consists of manuscripts written by several different authors who sent the material to Mr. Dunning for editing and printing, or articles written by Edgar Dunning himself. The manuscripts are histories and memoirs about people, organizations, and events in Ladner and Delta. Authors, other than Mr. Dunning, include W.A. Graham, Gordon Taylor, Leon Ladner, Bruce Ramsey, E.W. Hutcherson, L.M. Hutcherson, Elsa Grunlund Johnson, Mabel McPhail, and Ethel Muriel (Peggy) Holmes. The series also includes manuscripts created by Edgar Dunning for his CBC Radio show entitled Neighbourly News.

Records of other committees and societies

Series consists of records of societies which Mr. Dunning received as a member of the executive. Records include correspondence, minutes, agendas, legal documents, and copies of constitutions for the Delta Historical and Museum Society, Delta Board of Trade, May Day Society, the Delta Heritage Advisory Commission, the Delta History Book Project Commission and Delta Civic Association. The series also includes a history of the Delta Board of Trade written by Mr. Dunning.

Reference files

Series consists of correspondence, notes, and other material about miscellaneous aspects of the history of Lander and pioneer families of Delta, Paterson Park and the Deas Island Tunnel, among other subjects. Much of this information is written by other people and sent to Edgar Dunning. The series also contains lists of contacts for pursing historical information about businesses and clubs in Delta. Much of the material included in this series relates to Edgar Dunning's research for his newspaper articles. The headings that he had given to his file folders reflect themes or subject matter in many of his newspaper columns.

Photographs

Series consists of original and copy prints, negatives, contact prints, and slides of images largely of Delta people, places and events. The largest accession (1979-026) consists of prints used in Edgar Dunning's The Optimist newspaper business. Many of these prints have been annotated with cropping and other marks. The majority of images have been taken by Edgar Dunning; other images were given to him because of his interest in preserving Delta's history.

The Optimist publishing records

Series consists of a portion of the subscription and personnel records of The Optimist newspaper publishing business, largely from the 1940's. The series includes audited circulation records for The Optimist, 1951 to 1971, which were compiled by the Audit Bureau of Circulations in Chicago, Illinois.

The Optimist printers records

Series consists of programmes, pamphlets, forms, directories, letterheads, bound reports, tickets, announcements, and other material printed by The Optimist. Customers of The Optimist printing operation included the Corporation of Delta, Delta businesses, the Delta Agricultural Society and other non-profit organizations and private individuals. The printed material includes examples from other lower mainland presses. The Optimist was the main printer in Delta and Ladner, and the material collected in this series reflects the business, municipal and social activities and events of the day. The series also includes an order book for printing jobs done between 1955 and 1963, as well as a copy of the booklet "Tsawwassen Legends" published and printed by The Optimist.

CBC Neighbourly News

Series contains the original typewritten and edited copy scripts as well as two audio reels for CBC Radio's Neighbourly News show, written and hosted by Edgar Dunning from 1961-1986. These radio shows were aired from the Hotel Vancouver and provided snippets of news, gathered by Edgar Dunning from community newspapers across British Columbia. The series contains file level descriptions of the original scripts with newspaper clippings and handwritten notes by Edgar Dunning and file level descriptions of the edited scripts and original audio reels recorded on polyester film in 1984 along with a digital copy which was created by CBC Radio Archives Vancouver in October 2012.

Memorabilia

Series consists of publications, programmes, invitations, and other material collected by Edgar Dunning, often as the result of attending major municipal and community events in the capacity of editor and publisher of The Optimist. Edgar also collected historical documents which were given to him because of his interest in preserving Delta history.

Sound and moving images

Series contains one audio reel, twenty video reels, two Mini DV tapes, one DVD and one VHS. The audio reel features music for Christmas, and twenty video reels that depict home movies, vacation footage, news group tours, May Days events, horse racing at Paterson Park and various other events that Edgar Dunning attended or partook in.

Dunning family paper

Series consists of legal documents, correspondence, and certificates concerning ownership of the property at the corner of Delta and 48th Avenue, ownership of shares in various associations, and educational achievements. The series also includes notes made by Edgar Dunning that describe the history of the Dunning family, personal effects, personal documents, a UBC yearbook from 1928, and correspondence regarding the passing of Gertrude Dunning.

Records of the Delta Community Band

Series consists of the records of the Delta Community Band Society, including the band's constitution and by-laws, financial statements and records, roll books and membership rosters, correspondence, programs and play lists, press releases and news bulletins, and newspaper clippings about the band's activities.