Fonds MS-2-153 - Alexander E. Kerr fonds

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Alexander E. Kerr fonds

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  • Graphic material
  • Textual record

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Dates of creation area


  • 1851 - 1975 (Creation)
    Kerr, Alexander Enoch

Physical description area

Physical description

52 cm of textual and graphic records
2 photographs

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Biographical history

Alexander E. Kerr was the sixth president of Dalhousie University, serving from 1945-1963. Born in 1898 in Louisbourg, Nova Scotia, he served overseas with the Royal Air Force during World War One before completing a BA at Dalhousie and a diploma in theology from Pine Hill Divinity Hall. He was ordained in 1921 and completed his education at Union Seminary, from which he graduated magna cum laude.

Kerr served the church briefly in Sydney, Nova Scotia, and in Montreal before accepting a pastorate in Vancouver, where he spent five years, followed by ten years in Winnipeg. In 1939 he became principal and professor of systematic theology at Pine Hill. In 1945 Dr. Kerr was became the second Dalhousie graduate to be appointed president of his alma mater. During his tenure he declined nominations by the Maritime Conference, the Montreal-Ottawa Conference and the London Conference to become moderator of the General Council of the Church of Canada. In 1963, after retiring from the Dalhousie, Kerr became president of the Maritime Conference of the United Church of Canada and taught the Old Testament class at the Atlantic School of Theology (formerly Pine Hill).

Alexander Kerr was the only Canadian to receive an honorary doctorate of divinity at the 500th anniversary of the University of Glasgow. He held honorary degrees from most Maritime universities and the University of Winnipeg. He was a member of the North British Society and of the Canadian Mental Health Association, chairman of the building committee for the Abbie J. Lane Memorial Hospital, first honorary president of the Red Cross Society and honorary president of the Cape Breton Club. He died in Halifax on 30 November 1974 at the age of 76.

Custodial history

Records were accessioned by Dalhousie University Archives in 1972. The custodial history is unknown.

Scope and content

Fonds contains personal documents of Alexander E. Kerr, including sermons, notes, personal writings and essays, certificates and degrees, pamphlets, publications, newspaper clippings, two photographs, and minimal correspondence.

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  • English

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Restrictions on access

There are no access restrictions on these materials. All materials are open for research.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Materials do not circulate and must be used in the Archives and Special Collections Reading Room. Materials may be under copyright. Contact departmental staff for guidance on reproduction.

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Further accruals are not expected.

General note

Preferred citation: [Identification of item], Alexander E. Kerr fonds, MS-2-153, Box [box number], Folder [folder number], Dalhousie University Archives, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

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