Surveys and Mapping Branch sous-fonds [multiple media]
Record Information – Brief
Surveys and Mapping Branch sous-fonds [multiple media]
- Hierarchical level:
- R214-89-4-E, RG88, RG88M 912014, RG15M 73/18670, RG15M 60/4195, RG88M 59/3395, RG88M 77803/12, RG88M 79003/38, RG88M 82303/12, RG88M 85603/31, RG88M 87803/29, RG88M 88970, RG88M 88986, RG88M 82303/5, RG21M 1968-00002-X, RG88M 923038, RG88M 934018, RG88M 934023, RG88M 956005, RG88M 889177, RG88M 890646, RG88M 912032, RG88M 745/23238, RG88M
- Type of material:
- Textual material, Photographs, Maps and cartographic material, Art
- Found in:
- Archives / Collections and Fonds
- Item ID number:
- Context of this record:
Record Information – Details
- Sous-fonds includes:
5 lower level description(s)View lower level description(s)
- Bilingual equivalent:
- Place of creation:
74.6 m of textual records
ca. 54,373 maps : 153 hand col., some col., some blueprints
ca. 3,000 cartographic items
19.8 m. of electronic records
6.60 m. of cartographic items.
27.6 Mb of electronic records : one 8mm exabyte tape
ca. 200 0007 remote-sensing images
568 videocassettes of remote-sensing images.
ca. 1,523 v.
ca. 13,520 photographs.
1 portfolio (16 leaves, 39 pages with mounted photographs)
- Language of material:
- Added language of material:
- English, French
- Additional name(s):
- Biography/Administrative history:
Canada. Surveys and Mapping Branch : Following the surrender of Rupert's Land by the Hudson's Bay Company to the new Dominion of Canada in 1869, the federal government introduced two pieces of legislation: the Dominion Lands Act (35 Vic., c. 23), and the Department of the Interior Act (36 Vic., c. 4). The former spelled out in detail how the newly acquired territory would be administered by the federal government, and how the lands would be parcelled out to individual land holders; the latter provided the means by which this process would be carried out. The new Department of the Interior was to be composed of five branches, one of which, the Dominion Lands Branch, was to have sole responsibility for the various aspects of the Dominion Lands Act which covered the survey, sale, and lease of agricultural lands, and lands set aside for mining and forestry purposes. The Branch was placed under the direction the Surveyor General, Lieut. Col. John D. Dennis. A few years later, the Surveyor General would also be named the Deputy Head of the Department, demonstrating to some extent the important position that land surveys initially held within the department, at least during the earlier years. In the first decades of its existence, the Branch primarily concentrated on subdividing western agricultural lands into a patchwork of 160-acre allotments which would provide the backbone to the homesteading of the region by countless European and America immigrants. The branch also become involved in defining, both on the ground and on paper, the boundaries of such federal lands as Indian reserves and national parks. As this work evolved, the Department gradually severed off the survey function into a separate unit of its own, which by 1882 was known as the Surveys Branch or Current Surveys Branch. Throughout the late-nineteenth century, the Surveys Branch gradually expanded its role to include a full range of surveying tasks, in addition to its cadastral work. These tasks included the setting of standards for land surveys, and the certification of surveyors; all work in connection with the designing, engraving, printing, and distributing of maps; astronomical research and geodetic surveys; the introduction, testing and evaluation of new surveying technology; the Office of the Chief Geographer; and the monitoring of Canadian geographical names and orthography in federal government publications. As the Surveys Branch continued to expand some of its functions were eventually carved off into separate areas under the portfolio of the Minister of the Interior, such as the Geographical Branch and the Astronomy Branch. The Surveys Branch naturally went through a number of name changes during this period: in 1883, it was renamed the Technical Branch, and in 1890, in became the Topographical Surveys Branch. The Branch took its pivotal role in the surveying of Canada seriously, as evident in 1922 when it joined with the Department of Militia and Defence and the Geological Survey of the Department of Mines to form the Board of Topographical Surveys and Maps. The Board had the authority "...to consider and advise upon all questions...in relation to topographical surveys, [and] the compilation of new maps.." (PC 540, 8 March 1922). A few years later it also played a leading role in the formation of an interdepartmental aerial survey committee. In 1925, both these committees were combined to form the Board of Topographical and Aerial Surveys (PC 1394 , 1 September 1925). With the dissolution of the Department of the Interior in 1936, and the creation of a new Department of Mines (1 Edw. VIII, c. 33), the Topographical Surveys Branch was re-organized and renamed the Hydrographic and Map Service, and was placed in the Surveys and Engineering Branch of the new department, along with Dominion Observatories and the Geodetic Service. The branch was headed by Deputy Minister J.M. Wardle. This new arrangement remained in effect until 1947 when the Department re-organized itself and amalgamated all its research activities into the Mines, Forests and Scientific Services Branch (all non-scientific activities relating to natural resources administration were brought together under the Land and Development Services Branch). The Surveys and Mapping Branch was re-named the Surveys and Mapping Bureau and was placed in the new Mines, Forests and Scientific Services Branch along with the Bureau of Mines, the Dominion Forest Service, the Geological Survey, the Dominion Water and Power Bureau, the Geographic Bureau, the National Museum of Canada, and the Dominion Observatories. Just three years later, a major re-alignment of the functions of two federal departments was initiated by the St-Laurent government. The Department of Mines and Resources, and the Department of Reconstruction and Supply were abolished (13 Geo. VI, c. 18) and in their place were created three new ministries: Citizenship and Immigration (13 Geo. VI, c. 16), Mines and Technical Surveys (13 Geo. VI, c. 17), and Resources and Development (13 Geo. VI, c. 18). The shuffle was justified on the grounds "...that the importance of the mineral industry and of the Government's relations with the industry was such that there might well be a Minister of the Crown who would devote his full attention to the fields of mines and mining". The new Department of Mines and Resources had five branches: Mines, Geological Survey, Dominion Observatories, Geographical, and Surveys and Mapping. The latter was placed under Director W.H. Miller, and was to provide the base maps required for use in the development of Canada's natural resources. The Surveys and Mapping Branch (as it was now called) was also given responsibility for the production and distribution of all Canadian aids to navigation, for all legal surveys of federal lands, for the production of a national system of levelling and geodetic control, for maintaining a national air photo library, for the preparation of aeronautical charts and flight manuals, and for the production of electoral maps. The Chief of it Geodetic Survey was to act as the Canadian representative on the International Boundary Commission. Two years following the appointment of S.G. Gamble as Director of the Branch in 1958, oceanographic research was added to the portfolio as a result of growing interest in the resources of Canada's continental shelves. This move prove only temporary, however, because by 1962 all the Department's marine work was placed in a separate Marine Sciences Branch. Under the Government Organization Act of 1966, the Department of Mines and Technical Surveys was renamed the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources (14-15 Eliz. II, c. 25). The new department became the federal government's principal agency for the discovery, investigation, development and conservation of Canada's mineral, water and energy resources. To meet this new responsibility, the Department acquired from the Department of Northern Affairs and Natural Resources responsibility for water resources inventory and planning; mineral resources exploration for certain areas under federal jurisdiction, including Hudson Bay and the continental shelves; and federal energy policy. The department's operative agencies were organized into four groups (which were renamed "sectors" in 1969): Mines and Geoscience, Water, Mineral Development, and Energy Development. The Mines and Geosciences Group retained most of the original agencies of the former Department of Mines and Technical Surveys, including: the Surveys and Mapping Branch, the Geological Survey of Canada, the Mines Branch, the Observatories Branch, the Polar Continental Shelf Project, and the Geographical Branch. The following year, the Geographical Branch was disbanded, and as a result, the Surveys and Mapping Branch also re-acquire new responsibilities in the area of toponymy and thematic mapping. Branch responsibilities then remained unchanged until 1987 when it was merged with the Canada Centre for Remote Sensing to form the Surveys, Mapping and Remote Sensing Branch.
- Finding aid:
(Other) Finding aids are available. See lower level descriptions or consult ArchiviaNet. (96: Restrictions vary)
- Additional information:
- Source of title:
- Annual Reports
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