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A.M. Bell and Company

  • Corporate body
  • ca. 1890-1912
A.M. Bell & Company grew out of Andrew Bell's retail hardware business, which he first established in 1875 on Water Street, in Halifax, Nova Scotia. After expanding into the wholesale trade and taking on Arthur B. Wiswall as a junior partner, the firm became know as A.M. Bell & Company. In 1903 they erected a six-storey building on a site between Granville and Hollis—the first concrete building in Halifax. Bell sold the business in 1912 and died two years later.

A.M. Smith and Company.

  • Corporate body


Nathaniel and Martin Smith were brothers, originally from Yankeetown, Hammonds Plains, Halifax County. Descendants of British Empire Loyalists from Maryland, they moved to Halifax, Nathaniel around 1865 and Martin following in 1870, to attend to growing business interests, establishing a branch cooperage and forming N. & M. Smith Limited.

Martin Smith died in 1889 at age 54. In 1904 the section of the Halifax waterfront with N. & M. Smith wharves and buildings – Lower Water Street between Sackville and Prince Streets – was completely destroyed by fire. This property was rebuilt, and N. & M. Smith Limited returned to it in 1905; however, in the interim they purchased and used a property on Upper Water Street known as Cronan Wharf, which was later leased and subsequently sold.

The original business of a cooperage expanded to the export of salted fish and the import of fishery salt. N. & M. Smith underwent voluntary liquidation in about 1915; Martin Smith’s widow and two sons Howard H. and Albert Martin (“Bert”) retained the premises. A.M. Smith Company Limited was formed in 1917, and in 1920 the company became incorporated and known as A.M. Smith and Company Limited.


Howard H. Smith died in the early 1920s and his interest in the company was acquired by his brother, Albert Martin Smith. Albert Martin’s sons Albert Martin Smith, Jr. (“Ad”) and Fletcher S. Smith entered the company business after graduating from Dalhousie University in 1929, the third generation of brothers to do so. Upon declaration of war, A.M. Smith, Jr., a lieutenant in the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve, entered active service and spent eighteen months on a Canadian destroyer before being transferred to Halifax as a Staff Officer in the Executive Branch, with the rank of Commander. A. Martin Smith, son of “Ad,” was also in the business for a year or so, before leaving to establish his own law practice. Ad Smith died in 1970.

Under the management of Ad Smith and Fletcher S. Smith, the company embraced three main departments – Export, Import, and Domestic. The Smiths were the largest exporters of dry and picked salted fish products in the Maritime Provinces, benefiting from the science of the Atlantic Fisheries Experimental Station which adjoined the plant. Smith’s specialized in pickled mackerel and herring, which was sold in national and international markets.

The Import Department dealt in Fishery Salt, of which A.M. Smith and Company was the largest importer in Eastern Canada, bringing in cargo lots from world production centers. The Domestic Department was responsible for the creation of the “Sea-Nymph” brand of boneless codfish, and later kippered herring, which put bulk salt fish back on grocer’s shelves. The “Sea-Nymph” brand was packed by Smith Canneries, associates of A.M. Smith and Company.

By 1970, A.M. Smith and Company was almost wholly dependent on Newfoundland for supplies such as salted cod. Subsequently, when the Federal Salt Fish Act (Bill C175) was passed, and resulted in the creation of a state-owned company with a complete monopoly over all phases of the cured fish business, A.M. Smith and Company became redundant. The government refused to compensate redundant firms, and thus A.M. Smith and Company Limited were obliged to discontinue their waterfront business, and their property was sold on November 15, 1973. Fletcher S. Smith died in 1987.

The area formerly occupied by A.M. Smith and Company is now part of the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic on Lower Water Street, Halifax, NS.


Acadia Fisheries had a plant at Mulgrave, Nova Scotia, where it was for a time the largest employer in the area, with over 400 people on staff. The company purchased the Old Loggie Fish Plant in 1952, and used it as a base for the harvesting and processing of fish. The plant burned to the ground in the 1970s and was not rebuilt. The company was associated with A.M. Smith and Co.


Smith Canneries existed with virtually the same shareholders and directorate as A.M. Smith and Company, but with canning operations principally confined to Prince Edward Island. Fish for the plant was caught off the coast of Prince Edward Island, and subsequently packed under the “Sea-Nymph” brand, which included herring, salt herring, Dutch-style herring, mackerel, codfish, boneless salt cod, and ling. Smith Canneries also has use of the “Sea Nymph 1” dragger, a ship operated by A.M. Smith and Company for the salted and fresh fish trade.

American Institute of the History of Pharmacy.

  • Corporate body

The American Institute of the History of Pharmacy is an American association out of the University of Madison-Wisconsin Pharmacy School. The documentation and preservation of pharmacy's heritage is the primary aim of the Institute. They do this by making available a wide variety of materials related to scholarly, professional, and popular history of pharmacy. The Institute provides financial support for research designed to illuminate the history of the profession, the history of drug research and manufacturing, and the history of the uses of medicines in society.

AIHP serves as consultant to professional associations, teachers, libraries, museums, pharmacy schools, communications media, and scholars in the field. The Institute has co-operated with the agencies and associations of American pharmacy to promote professional development by providing historical research, information, and insight on the issues affecting pharmacy both past and present. The Institute sponsors symposia and workshops, often collaborating with groups like the American Pharmaceutical Association and the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy to foster research and publishing on ethics, technology, and other issues of importance to the field.

Ammon, Stepka

  • Person
Stepka Ammon associated with the Centre for Art Tapes in 2006 because their video “Cultural Perception and Culture Clash: a Look from Germany” became a part of the centre’s tape collection.

Anderson, George Douglas Elphinstone, 1902-

  • Person
George Douglas Elphinstone Anderson was born in Lunenburg in 1902, the son of Albert and Effie Anderson. His father practiced law in Lunenburg until joining the Royal Canadian Ordinance Corps which posted him to Halifax, Saint John and Ottawa. George graduated from Acadia University with a B.Sc. In 1926 and then pursued a engineering degree from the Nova Scotia Technical University. He worked at Westington Co. as a student engineer before joing Nova Scotia Power and Light in September 1928 as an Electrical Engineer. During World War II, Anderson head a special division of NSPL that was set up to deguass merchant and naval ships for which he was awarded the Order of the British Empire in the King's Honour List in 1945. Anderson continued to work at NSPL after the war filling a variety of engineering and administrative positions. In 1969, he retired from the Company as Executive Vice-President.

Anderson, Heather

  • Person
Heather Anderson became associated with the Centre for Art Tapes in 2003 because their video recording “Granddaughter Excerpts” became a part of the centre’s tape collection.

Anderson, Robert N.

  • Person
  • [ca. 1870 - 1930]
Robert N. Anderson was a commercial ship's captain. He commanded the schooner Corona in the 1880s and the S.S. Winona in the late 1910s, carrying freight between the United States and the United Kingdom and elsewhere.

Andrews, Alan Richard

  • Person
  • 1935-

Alan R. Andrews is professor emeritus at Dalhousie University. Born in England in 1935, he was educated at King Henry VII and King Edward VI schools before earning his BA, MA and a Diploma of Education from Leeds University. He later obtained his PhD at the University of Illinois.

Andrews was appointed to Dalhousie's English department in 1966, but moved to the newly created Department of Theatre in 1969, where he served as the inaugural chair until 1971. He was promoted to full professor in 1981. His scholarly interests included George Bernard Shaw, Granville Barker and St. John Hankin, about whom he wrote and lectured frequently, including at the Shaw Festival in Ontario. He directed many university theatre productions, served as an editor of The Dalhousie Review (1985-1995), and was secretary to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in the early 1980s. He had close ties with Neptune Theatre, was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and was President of the Canadian Association of University Teachers from 1992-1994. Alan Andrews retired from Dalhousie in June 2001.

Anglo-Soviet Music Press Ltd.

  • Corporate body
  • 1946-
The Anglo-Soviet Music Press was a London publishing firm founded by Alfred Kalmus during World War Two, which aimed to introduce the works of Russian composers to a British audience.

Annie Logan Barnwell

  • Person
  • 1885-1977
Annie Logan Barnwell was born in 1885 in Pictou, Nova Scotia, to David and Jennie Logan. In 1911 she married Victor Alexander Barnwell (1884-1965). She died in 1977 in Haliburton, Pictou County.

Antoft, Kell

  • Person
  • 1923-2005

Kell Antoft was a professor in Dalhousie's School of Public Administration and had a distinguished research career in local government, municipal planning, taxation and non-resident land ownership. Born on 24 July 1923 in Roskilde, Denmark, at age seven Antoft immigrated to Canada with his parents, Otto and Asta (Rump) Antoft, eventually settling in Lakeville, Nova Scotia. He received his early education at the King's County Academy and later at Sir George Williams College, Montreal, and Dalhousie University.

Antoft was a keen hosteller and founded the Nova Scotia branch of the Canadian Hostelling Association in 1938, remaining active in the hostelling movement for many decades as a member of the Trustee Committee. From 1943-1946 he served as a Royal Canadian Air Force navigator and settled in Montreal after the war, where he founded two successful businesses: Viking Air Service and Nordic Biochemicals Ltd. Under his presidency of Nordic Biochemicals (1951-1956), the company conducted foundational growth hormone research.

In 1966 Antoft sold his business interests and moved to Toronto to work as the Assistant Executive Director of the National Cancer Institute of Canada. In 1969 he returned to Nova Scotia to take up an appointment as Assistant Director of the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA). He served as Director from 1977-1984, when he took up a full-time professorial appointment at Dalhousie's School of Public Administration. On his retirement in 1989, he was appointed as an adjunct professor at Henson College, which in 2003 amalgamated with several other historically separate institutions to become Dalhousie's College of Continuing Education.

Antoft was a member of the Canadian Cancer Society in Nova Scotia for over twenty years, with a two-year term as president (1980-1982); he was involved in both provincial and national public issues committees and the Nova Scotia and Canada Councils on Smoking and Health. His papers help to document the Cancer Society's move towards an active role in voicing opposition to tobacco advertising campaigns and sponsorship and in supporting anti-smoking campaigns.

An avid lifelong skier, Antoft worked in various capacities with many ski clubs and programs in Canada, including co-founding with Al Raine the Nancy Greene Ski League. He served on boards and committees with various clubs and associations, including the Canadian Ski Association, the Atlantic Ski Zone, the Wentworth Valley Ski Club, the Nova Scotia Ski Areas Association, the Nova Scotia Seniors' Ski Club, Dalhousie Alpine Ski Team and the Dalhousie Penguin Club. He was inducted into the Nova Scotia Sport Heritage Hall of Fame in 2000.

Antoft's work with young people led him to serve on both the national and Atlantic Region boards of Katimavik. He was also actively involved in politics, working on behalf of the New Democratic Party from the mid-1980s and running for Halifax City Council in 1985. He co-founded Veterans Against Nuclear Arms (VANA) and its affiliated organization, the Defence Research and Education Centre. Kell Antoft was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada in 2001 and a Member of the Council of the Order of Nova Scotia in 2002. He died in 2005, survived by his second wife, Mary Lou Courtney.

Apostle, Richard A.

  • Person
  • 1948 -
Richard Apostle is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology at Dalhousie University. He received his BA from Simon Fraser University, and MA and PhD from University of California, Berkeley. HIs major publications deal with maritime social science, socioeconomic segmentation, library and information science, and white racial social attitudes. His current research activities focus on the global scientific tracking of endangered marine species.

Archer, Violet

  • Person
  • 1913-2000
Dr. Violet Balestreri Archer is a distinguished Canadian composer. She wrote more than 280 compositions and was an active promoter of Canadian and twentieth-century music. She was born in Montreal, Quebec in 1913, lived most of her life in Edmonton, Alberta, and passed away on February 22, 2000 in Ottawa, Ontario.

Archibald, Edith Jessie

  • Person
  • 1856-1938
Edith Jessie Archibald, née Archibald, was born in St. John's, Newfoundland and educated in New York and London, England. She married Charles Archibald (1845-1929) in 1874. In 1893, they moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia. Although she began her social activist work in Port Morien, Cape Breton where they lived previously, most her involvement in social activism dates from her time in Halifax. She was president of the Maritime Woman's Christian Temperance Union (1892 -1896); the Local Council of Women (1896-1906); and the Halifax Victorian Order of Nurses (1897-1901), and vice-president of the Nova Scotia Red Cross (1914). She was also heavily involved in the suffragist campaign and led the suffrage delegation to the legislature in 1917. During her lifetime she published many pamphlets, songs, plays, and books. She died in 1938 and is buried at Camp Hill Cemetery in Halifax. In 1997, she was designated a "Person of National Historical Significance" by the Government of Canada for her work to promote women's rights.

Archibald, Samuel George William, 1777-1846

  • Person

The Hon. Samuel George Wilson Archibald was born on February 5, 1777 in Truro, Nova Scotia, the third son of Samuel Archibald and Rachel Todd. He was educated at Haverhill and Andover until 1796 and served as a protonotary of the Supreme Court and clerk of the peace for the district of Colchester before taking up the study of law in the Halifax office of Samuel Bradstreet Robie.

In 1805, Archibald was admitted as an attorney and barrister and in 1817 he was appointed, alongside William Halliburton, to Nova Scotia's first King's Counsel. He also served as surrogate general for the colony's vice admiralty court in 1818. In 1819, Archibald (unsuccessfully) prosecuted Richard John Uniacke, Jr., who took part in the last fatal duel in Nova Scotia. Archibald set up an oat mill in Truro in 1822. In addition, he served as Chief Justice for Prince Edward Island from 1824 to 1828, although he never resided on the island.

Archibald was elected to the House of Assembly for Halifax County from 1806 to 1836 and for Colchester County from 1836 to 1841. He was elected to the office of Speaker in 1825 and also served as Attorney General from 1832 until he left the Assembly in 1841 to become Master of the Rolls.

Archibald married Emma Dickson in 1802, with whom he had fifteen children. After her death in 1830, he married widow Joanna Brinley and had three daughters. Archibald died of a stroke on January 28, 1846.

Archibald, Sanford

  • Person
  • 1909 - 2001

Sanford Wellington "Barney" Archibald was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, in 1909. He attended Halifax Academy and graduated with a BComm from Dalhousie University in 1930. From 1929-1937 he worked in the circulation department of the Halifax Herald, and from 1937-1939 he was the circulation manager of the St. John Citizen. In 1939, he moved to New York City to establish the Protestant Digest (later The Protestant) with Kenneth Leslie, serving as the journal's promotion manager.

In 1954, Archibald founded Printolith Corporation in New York, with which he remained associated until his retirement to Granville Ferry, Nova Scotia, in 1976. He was actively involved in a number of community organizations, including the Canadian Bible Society of Halifax and Children and Family Services of Annapolis County. He was treasurer of the Annapolis Royal Historical Association and arranged for the transfer of the Annapolis Royal Lighthouse from the Canadian Coast Guard. He died 18 February 2001 in Halifax.

Archibald, Stephen

  • Person
Stephen Archibald was a Dalhousie University student in the 1960s, graduating with a BA in 1968 and working towards an MA for two further years. In 1966 he joined a student group that took photographs for the Dalhousie Gazette and Pharos, the Dalhousie University yearbook, working out of a run-down studio and darkroom in the old Student Union building. In 1970-1971 he was enrolled in design courses at NSCAD, then housed on Coburg Road, and he made regular visits to the Photo Department, which had moved to a well-equipped space in the new Student Union Building. The SUB also had a gallery space, which he booked for a show in the Spring of 1971, having decided to mount an exhibition of photographs of protest marches and demonstrations taken by the Photo Department over the past years.

Armour, Charles

  • Person
The Shipping Reference Collection is a compilation of primary and secondary sources related to shipping and maritime history in Nova Scotia and beyond. The collection has been built by staff at the Dalhousie University Archives from materials acquired through a variety of sources over a number of years.

Armstrong, David

  • Person
David Armstrong became associated with the Centre for Art Tapes in 2006 because their video “Ship of Fools” became a part of the centre’s tape collection.

Armstrong, Faye

  • Person
Faye Armstrong became associated with the Centre for Art Tapes in July, 1987 because of their involvement in the audio recording entitled “CFAT benefit- July 11. 1987” which became a part of the centre’s tape collection.

Arnell, Helen Dorothy (Armitage), 1891-

  • Person
Helen Arnell was born Helen Dorothy Adams Armitage in 1891 in St. Catherines, Ontario. In 1898 she moved with her family to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where her father, William James Armitage, was rector of St. Paul's Church and later Archdeadon of Halifax. She was educated at the Halifax Academy and entered Dalhousie University in 1907, graduating with her BA in 1911. In 1917 she married Kenneth Carstairs Arnell, with whom she moved to Bermuda, where she had at least two children and spent the remainder of her life.

Arnison, Joseph Simpson, 1820-1892

  • Person
Joseph Simpson Arnison was born in 1820 in Westward, Cumbria, England to Thomas John Arnison and Nancy Ann Simpson. The family emigrated to Pictou, Nova Scotia ca. 1820, where Thomas was part owner of the Eastern Stage Coach Company. In 1855 Joseph returned to Newcastle, England and married Isabella Coulson Natusin. By 1861 they had three daughters (Isabella, Anne Harris, and Margaret Wilson) and an infant son, Joseph Naters Arnison. A second son, Ralph Naters Arnison, died in 1867. Joseph was a glass manufacturer at the Newcastle Flint Glass Works, which was dissolved in 1874. He also ran the Sandyford Brewery until 1887 and operated an export business, shipping goods to a store he owned in Pictou, which he sought to sell in 1865. He passed away in Newcastle in July 1892.

Arthur Fordham and Company

  • Corporate body
  • 1867 - 1970
Arthur Fordham was a leather merchant based in Halifax, Nova Scotia. His shop was located at 148 Upper Water Street in the 1870s. The McAlpine's Halifax City Directory for 1883-1884 shows that Fordham resided at 3 Creighton Street and his shop was located at 106 Upper Water Street.

Arthur P. Schmidt

  • Corporate body
  • 1876-1960
The Arthur P. Schmidt publishing house was established by the man of the same name, shortly after his arrival in Boston from Germany in 1876. It began in conjunction with a music store, which Schmidt sold in 1889. He was known for his publications of American composers, and was the first American publisher to publish an American Symphony, Symphony No. 2 by George Whitefield Chadwick (1888). The company was acquired by Summy-Birchard in 1960.

Askevold, David

  • Person
  • 1940- 2008
David Askevold (30 March 1940 – 23 January 2008) was an internationally known experimental Canadian artist, whose practices included media, painting and video. Askevold came to Nova Scotia in the 1970s to develop and teach the “Projects Class” at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, which involved numerous conceptual artists. Askevold contributed to the local Halifax art community, as is seen in the tapes associated with the Centre for Art Tapes.

Atherton, Alfred B.

  • Person
  • 1843 - [19--]
Alfred B. Atherton was born in York County, New Brunswick, in 1843. He was educated at the University of New Brunswick (1862) and studied medicine and surgery at Harvard University, graduating with an MD in 1866. He completed post-graduate studies at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Edinburgh and obtained his LRCPS in 1867. Dr. Atherton practised medicine in Fredericton, was an active member of several professional associations, and sat on the Senate of the University of New Brunswick for twelve years.
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