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Canada Cement Lafarge Fonds

  • CA MUA MG 4109
  • Fonds
  • approximately 1910-1980

The fonds reflects the Company’s involvement in the construction of buildings utilizing cement across Canada and comprises original photographs and some negatives of buildings. The photographs document construction over a wide range of time, geography and type of structure. The fonds reflects technical evolution of the use of cement construction, as well as the architectural evolution in Montreal and many of its public buildings. The major part of the photographs are of buildings completed by Canada Cement, and only a small number of the prints show the early factories and the equipment. Although the collection documents the company’s projects across Canada, about one third of the collection relates to Quebec and Montreal. Included in the fonds is one 16mm film "Concrete's Finest 50 Years".

This collection consists of 2 main subjects, arranged in 3 series: the first subject, structural projects involving Canada Cement and Canada Cement Lafarge, is divided into a Type of Building Series (subdivided by region) and a Regional Series (subdivided by type of building). The second subject, Canada Cement's own factories and its Montreal head office, is contained in a smaller Plant Series.

Canada Cement Company

Plant Series

Many of these photographs depict structures and activities at the Montreal East Plant, ca. 1910-1940. Quarrying, loading docks, interiors and exteriors of buildings, trucks, and machinery are included. Many of the photographs depict industrial and harbour scenes in East Montreal. Other photographs, including an album by the Rice studio, depict the construction of the head office on Phillips Square, ca. 1920. There are also about 30 photos of the construction of Camp Borden in 1916. (Canada Cement Lafarge has retained for possible publicity uses photos of its other Canadian plants.)

Canada Cement Company

Regional Series

The Regional Series includes progress and "as finished" photographs of structures built across the country by Canada Cement. There are often up to 20 different photos per project, showing various details and phases. The majority date from 1940 to 1980, with some from 1920 to 1940. Identifications are on the photographs or on the envelopes containing them. Negatives, information sheets, and correspondence are included occasionally. The photographs document approximately the same range of projects as in the Type of Building series, such as apartment buildings, dams, motels, schools, etc. (This series was called the "Black and White" series by the Company administration).

Canada Cement Company

Type of Building Series

The Type of Building series includes progress and "as finished" photographs of buildings constructed by Canada Cement. Usually there will be several photos (often as many as 20) showing the various phases of the project, both in details and in full. The projects include airports, churches, concrete masonry, homes, prestressed materials, and stadiums. Structures were built in most areas of Canada. Many of the projects, such as dams, include distance and aerial views. The majority of photos in this series appear to date from 1940 to 1980, although there are many from ca. 1915 to 1940. Nearly all photos are identified on the back or on the envelope containing them. Negatives and information sheets about the building are sometimes included. Occasionally there is correspondence, mainly of the Publicity and Sales Department of Canada Cement. (This series was called the "Old Photo" series by Company administration).

Canada Cement Company