Title and statement of responsibility area
YMCA of Montreal Fonds
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- Textual record
- Graphic material
- Moving images
- Sound recording
- Cartographic material
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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)
Dates of creation area
- YMCA of Montreal
Physical description area
approximately 125 m of textual records
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Archival description area
Name of creator
The first YMCA-the Young Men's Christian Association-was founded in London, England in 1844 by George Williams, age 23. It was a religious (Evangelical Protestant) movement for young men who had left their families and migrated from outlying areas to jobs in London. Its goal was their character development. It provided fellowship and opportunities for constructive use of leisure time.
At the world's fair that took place in London in 1851, YMCA pamphlets were distributed to visitors from all over the world, including a number of Montrealers who judged that it would fulfill a need in their city.
An inaugural meeting of the Montreal YMCA took place at St. Helen Street Baptist Church in November 1851. The Montreal YMCA can claim to be the first in North America, although YMCAs started up in Boston, New York, Toronto, and other North American cities about the same time.
The North American YMCAs formed a confederation in 1854. The World Alliance of YMCAs was formed in 1855.
In 1853, the Montreal YMCA hired its first paid employee, Samuel Massey. He worked as a missionary to young men in Montreal. As an adjunct to its religious mission, in the 1850s the Montreal YMCA created a social centre in rented quarters where young men could gather. It included a library and reading room. The Y began offering lectures, an employment service, and charitable relief to the indigent.
The first Montreal YMCA building was erected in 1873 on Victoria Square.
That year, the first evening educational courses were held, in French and shorthand. Services were added for younger boys and immigrants. Sports were added in the late 1880s. War work-services to military personnel-was first undertaken during the Boer War. Foreign service-outreach to other countries-became important early in the twentieth century.
Expansion was rapid, and in 1892 the Montreal YMCA created new quarters on Dominion Square, where the Sun Life building now stands. In the Dominion Square Y building there were meeting rooms, a reading room and a library, club and class rooms, an auditorium, a gymnasium, locker and shower rooms, a swimming pool, a bowling alley, and a dining room.
In 1894, a boys' summer camp was opened in the Laurentians north of Montreal. Outdoor programs have been part of the Association's programming ever since.
In 1912, the Central/Downtown Branch of the Montreal Association moved to new quarters on Drummond Street. That year, the Association opened the Westmount Branch and the North Branch (now YMCA du Parc). Other branches and various satellite units have existed at various times throughout the Metropolitan Montreal region.
In 1931 the Downtown Branch was remodeled and a 500-room residential annex was added to provide low-cost accommodation and meals for men. The residence would later serve as accommodation for refugees. (In 2001 as part of a major renovation of the YMCA Centre-ville, the downtown residence was demolished. The Y opened refugee accommodation in the former Reddy Memorial Hospital on Tupper Street.)
The Montreal YMCA has offered many programs, including physical and aquatics programs and social programs. The educational programs grew to become one of Concordia University founding institutions, Sir George Williams College/University. In the 1970s a shift in government policy in Quebec meant increased emphasis on community recreational programs, and the YMCA provided input and management services for these programs. Community development programs, including immigrant, crime prevention, and offender rehabilitation programs, were added.
At the beginning of the twenty-first century, the Metropolitan Montreal Association included the YMCA Centre-ville, the du Parc YMCA, the Guy-Favreau YMCA, the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve YMCA, the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce YMCA, the Pointe Saint-Charles YMCA, the Saint-Laurent YMCA, the West Island YMCA, the Westmount YMCA, Kamp Kanawana, the YMCA residence for refugee claimants, and the YMCA International Language school and the YMCA Foundation and Metropolitan services offices which were located in the same building as the YMCA Centre-ville.
Scope and content
The fonds documents the mission, structure, senior personnel, administration, programs, activities, facilities, and evolution of the Montreal YMCA (as of 2009, Le Y du Québec) from its founding in 1851 to the late 20th century.
The records document the Montreal YMCA's relationships with a wide range of external bodies, including YMCAs in other Canadian cities and towns, the National Council of YMCAs of Canada, the YMCA movement in North America and the world, and other entities.
The records document Concordia University founding institution Sir George Williams College/University and its precursors in the YMCA's educational programs. In addition, the records document the demographic history of the Montreal region, in particular the English-speaking Protestant community.
The fonds includes materials that were amassed by Harold C. Cross and Murray C. Ross when they were developing their histories of the Montreal Association and the YMCA in Canada, respectively.
The fonds includes materials from the former Metropolitan Montreal YMCA library/documentation centre.
The fonds includes correspondence of YMCA officials and others, board and committee minutes and related records, program and fund-raising publicity, books, newsletters, annual reports, year books, statistical and other reports, demographic studies, lecture notes, photographs, sound recordings on tape and vinyl, videotapes, films and film strips, posters, commemorative T-shirts, badges, trophies and other objects, artwork, blueprints, maps and other items on a variety of material media.
The fonds is arranged according to the following classification plan.
P0145/01 Founding documents, constitution, by-laws, histories.
P0145/01A Founding documents, constitution, by-laws.
P0145/02 Metropolitan Board of Directors.
P0145/02A Directors, presidents.
P0145/02B Metropolitan Board and Executive Committee meetings.
P0145/02C Nominating Committee.
P0145/02D Annual Reports.
P0145/03 Annual and Special General Meetings.
P0145/04 Professional Staff.
P0145/04A Individual senior employed officers.
P0145/04B Staff professional development.
P0145/04C Training for YMCA secretaryship (Fellowship Plan).
P0145/04D Managerial groups.
P0145/04D01 Meetings, conferences, administration.
P0145/04D02 Publications, studies.
P0145/05 Planning, policy, structure.
P0145/05B Organization charts, directories.
P0145/05C Organizational review.
P0145/05D Policies, procedures.
P0145/05D03 Language policy.
P0145/05E Planning, surveys.
P0145/05E01 1925 Montreal YMCA Population Study.
P0145/05E02 1946 Hugg Study.
P0145/05E03 1949-1952 Branch Study.
P0145/05E04 Guide Lines to the Sixties.
P0145/05E05 1964-1969 Planning and Development.
P0145/05E06 1969-1970 Planning Process.
P0145/05E07 1971 Planning Process Mobilization.
P0145/05E08 Development Plan for 1980-1985.
P0145/05E09 1984-1987 Strategic Plan.
P0145/05E10 1986-1988 Strategic Planning Review.
P0145/05E11 1990s surveys.
P0145/05E12 Small surveys and planning exercises.
P0145/05E13 Proposals for unrealized branches, facilities.
P0145/05E14 Source materials.
P0145/06 Financial administration.
P0145/06A Committees, policies.
P0145/06C Budget control, accounting.
P0145/06D Financial statements.
P0145/06F Investments, gifts.
P0145/06G Tax-exempt status.
P0145/07 Human resources.
P0145/07A Personnel committee and personnel management.
P0145/07B Employee files.
P0145/07C Union affairs.
P0145/08B Public relations.
P0145/08E Records management.
P0145/10A Committees, policies.
P0145/10C Boys work, boys and girls work, girls work, youth work.
P0145/10D Citizenship training.
P0145/10E Community development.
P0145/10F Community justice.
P0145/10G01 Constitutive documents, histories.
P0145/10G03 Financial management.
P0145/10G05 Buildings, properties.
P0145/10G06 Faculty, staff.
P0145/10G07 Students, student services, associations.
P0145/10G08 Curriculum, programs.
P0145/10G10 External relations.
P0145/10J Handicapped persons.
P0145/10K Health care.
P0145/10L Immigrants, refugees.
P0145/10M Industrial Work.
P0145/10N International Development.
P0145/10O Leadership development.
P0145/10P Physical Education.
P0145/10Q Pre-school, children.
P0145/10R Railroad Work.
P0145/10S Religious Work.
P0145/10U Social recreation.
P0145/10W Y's Men, Y's Menettes.
P0145/11 Branches, buildings, facilities.
P0145/11A Branches and facilities general.
P0145/11B YMCA Centre-ville.
P0145/11B02 Administration, Board of Management.
P0145/11B03 Annual Reports.
P0145/11B04 Annual General Meetings.
P0145/11B05 Financial administration.
P0145/11B07 Human resources administration.
P0145/11B09 Facilities, buildings, equipment, supplies.
P0145/11C Du Parc/North/International/Fairmount.
P0145/11E Pointe St-Charles.
P0145/11G West Island.
P0145/12 Camping, outdoor programs.
P0145/12B Kamp Kanawana.
P0145/12B01 General administration.
P0145/12B02 Financial administration.
P0145/12B03 Land, facilities, equipment, supplies.
P0145/12B05 Staff, counsellors.
P0145/12C Camp Otoreke.
P0145/12C01 General administration.
P0145/12C02 Financial administration.
P0145/12C03 Land, facilities, equipment, supplies.
P0145/12C05 Staff, counsellors.
P0145/12D Camp Becsies.
P0145/12E Camp Dorval.
P0145/12F Camp Weredale.
P0145/12G Camp Perrot.
P0145/12H Ski lodge.
P0145/12I Camp Thunderbird.
P0145/12J Wilderness Survival Camp.
P0145/12K Les Voyageurs de la Vérendrye.
P0145/12L Lac St-Joseph/Camp Jubilee.
P0145/12M Day camp.
P0145/12N Camping associations.
P0145/12N01 American Camping Association.
P0145/12N02 Canadian Camping Association.
P0145/12N03 Quebec Section, Canadian Camping Association (also known as Quebec Camping Association).
P0145/12N04 Quebec Camping Association/Association des camps du Québec.
P0145/13 Special events.
P0145/13A Visits of dignitaries.
P0145/13C Open house.
P0145/13D Memorials, tributes, testimonials, honours.
P0145/13E Expo 1967/Canadian centennial.
P0145/13F 1976 Montreal Olympic Games.
P0145/14 External relations.
P0145/14A The World Alliance of YMCAs, World Councils, World Conferences, international visits.
P0145/14A01 World Alliance, World Councils, World Conferences.
P0145/14A02 International visits.
P0145/14B World Service, Foreign Work.
P0145/14C International Committee, other North American YMCA organizations.
P0145/14D National Council of YMCAs of Canada.
P0145/14D01 Constitutive documents.
P0145/14D03 Annual Reports.
P0145/14D04 Correspondence, reports.
P0145/14D05 Meetings of Council, Board, Executive Committee, staff.
P0145/14D06 Committee meetings, reports.
P0145/14D07 Annual, Special General Meetings.
P0145/14D08 National conferences, conventions.
P0145/14D09 Policy, planning, surveys.
P0145/14D10 Program support.
P0145/14D11 Military Work.
P0145/14D11a Boer War.
P0145/14D11b World War I.
P0145/14D11c Interwar period.
P0145/14D11d World War II.
P0145/14D11e Post-World War II.
P0145/14D12 Geneva Park: Couchiching national centre.
P0145/14D13 Camp Canada.
P0145/14D14 Human resources administration.
P0145/14D15 Financial administration.
P0145/14D16 Communications, public relations.
P0145/14D17 Directories, rosters.
P0145/14E Regional YMCA councils, committees.
P0145/14F YMCAs of the United Kingdom.
P0145/14G YMCAs of the United States.
P0145/14H Canadian local YMCAs.
P0145/14I YWCA, other organizations.
Immediate source of acquisition
The Montreal YMCA donated the documents to the Concordia University Archives. The first accession was moved to the Archives on the occasion of the Downtown YMCA's re-occupation of the renovated Norris Building in 2000 and 2001. Additional materials were received in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005.
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A selection of digital objects is accessible: https://archive.org/details/ymca-montreal-fonds
Further accruals are expected.
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Name access points
- YMCA of Montreal (Subject)