Perspectives on Personal Archives

  • Rodney G.S. Carter
  • Rob Fisher
  • Carolyn Harris
  • Catherine Hobbs

Author Biographies

Rodney G.S. Carter

Rodney G.S. Carter is the archivist for the St. Joseph Region of the Religious Hospitallers of St. Joseph, based in Kingston, Ontario. He obtained a master of information studies degree (archival studies) from the University of Toronto and an honours BA in art history from Queen’s University. He has published a number of articles and reviews in Archivaria, as well as articles in Historic Kingston and Queen’s Quarterly. Carter has been actively involved in the Association of Canadian Archivists, serving on numerous committees, including a term as vice-president from 2009 to 2011, and has served on committees for the Catholic Archivist Group and the Archives Association of Ontario (AAO). In 2012, the AAO presented him with the Alexander Fraser Award, given “to individuals who have contributed in a significant way to the advancement of the archival community in Ontario.”

Rob Fisher

Rob Fisher, a senior archivist at Library and Archives Canada, has extensive experience with personal archives and the records of organizations in the fields of Canadian scholarship, education, journalism, intellectual and religious life, and social development. He has served as chair of the Membership Development Committee of the Association of Canadian Archivists and has long been active in the Special Interest Section on Personal Archives. His writings on archival theory and practice have appeared in Archivaria , including the article “In Search of a Theory of Private Archives: The Foundational Writings of Jenkinson and Schellenberg Revisited” (Archivaria 67). Fisher has also written widely on Canadian history, genealogy, and naval history for scholarly journals and popular magazines like Canadian Military History, The Northern Mariner, The American Neptune, Family Chronicle, The Beaver, and Legion Magazine, among others.

Carolyn Harris

Carolyn Harris is an archivist at Yukon Archives in Whitehorse, where she works with municipal and territorial government records. From 2010 to early 2012, she was project archivist at the Clara Thomas Archives and Special Collections at York University in Toronto. Her work on a personal fonds there led to the publication of “Paper Memories, Presented Selves: Original Order and the Arrangement of the Donald G. Simpson Fonds at York University,” which appeared in Archivaria 74. Previously, she served as archivist at the Ontario Jewish Archives. Harris holds a master of information studies degree (archives concentration) from the University of Toronto and an honours bachelor of arts in history and English from McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario. Though she has been surprisingly seduced by records management and government records, she remains passionate about personal archives and the evolution of scholarship in this area of archival theory and practice.

Catherine Hobbs

Catherine Hobbs has been the literary archivist (English-language) at Library and Archives Canada for fourteen years, during which time she has been responsible for the archives of many prominent Canadian authors, editors, literary agents, small press publishers, and authors’ professional associations. She is an adjunct professor in the MA program in public text at Trent University (Peterborough, Ontario), chair of the Special Interest Section on Personal Archives (SISPA) within the Association of Canadian Archivists, and a board member of the Section on Literary and Art Archives within the International Council on Archives. Hobbs has a background in literary theory and information science, and she writes and lectures on issues surrounding literary and personal archives. Her most recent writing includes a dialogue with Sarah Kastner, “Literary Archives, Fictional Truths and Material(real)ities: The Yvonne Vera Project,” in the online journal nomorepotlucks.

How to Cite
Carter, Rodney G.S., Rob Fisher, Carolyn Harris, and Catherine Hobbs. 2013. “Perspectives on Personal Archives”. Archivaria 76 (November), 1-5.
From the Guest Editors