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Harry Byers fonds.
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Lawson [Byers?] placing roses on William Byers' grave.

Snapshot of a young child identified as Lawson, placing flowers on William Byers' grave. Explanation on verso reads: "This is Lawson putting the bunch of roses he had for his christining [sic] on his Uncle Will's grave. The words on the stone are 'In loving memory of Wm C. Byers born August 1, 1885, died August 13, 1921', the circle 'Woodmen of the World' his lodge."

Byers, Harry J.

Harry Byers fonds : 2018 accrual.

Materials relating to the personal and professional life of Harry J. Byers. Includes photographs, coins, artefacts, correspondence, ephemera and more. Most of the items relate to Byers' time working in Russia from 1930-1931.

Byers, Harry J.

Harry Byers fonds : 1992 accrual.

Materials relating to the professional and personal life of Harry J. Byers. Includes biographical documents, including his passport and WW1 papers, ephemera, clippings and correspondence as well as approximately 270 photographs of Harry Byers and his family. Also included are photographs from Byers' time living in Russia, and a diary recounting the two years he was there.

Byers, Harry J.

Postcard : Russian worker.

One postcard with Cyrillic writing on the front and an image of a draftsman working at a desk. Verso reads "Hello Jack, well we have been home for the last 4 days and it is sure H-. Leaving today for Valavodstok [Vladivostok?]. Had one hell of a trip on the train also had a wreck but they did not shoot the engineer. Best Regards, Kelly.

Clipping : "With Tractor Instructor in Russia".

Contains a newspaper clipping of an article describing the experiences of a Mr. Thome, who was a tractor instructor in Russia. His experiences would be similar to those of Harry Byers. A handwritten note appears on the article that reads: "Here is a good laugh Old Mom".

Byers, Harry J.

Nikolskoye Nov. 20, 1930.

File consists of 1 portrait of Harry Byers and an unidentified man posing in a studio prop of an automobile. Byers is drinking something from a bottle. Caption on the verso reads: "Nikolskoye Nov. 20: 30. Holy smokes here we come 2 the 4 Horseman give us room. Now if I only had our radiator cap - I'd show you some speed. My American friend with me."

Byers, Harry J.

Byers, Jim and Shirley : photograph.

One snapshot of Jim and Shirley Byers, children of Harry and Violet Byers. Verso reads " Jim 4 yrs & Shirley 3 yrs. Jim Jan 20/1942 Shirley April 3/1943. Harry & Violet Byers (parents)."

Byers, Harry J. and Violet : photograph.

One snapshot of Harry J. Byers and Violet used for their passport. Verso reads "This is our pass port picture, I was sore at the bird who snapped this. Funny looking out fit. Vi looks funnier than me. Don't tell her I told you. PS Look at my chin. 1930"

Byers, Harry J. and group : photograph.

One snapshot of Harry J. Byers with a group of unidentified other men. Verso reads "Xmas Day [Verblude]. Harry Byers - instructor in Siberia."

Byers, Harry J.

Valentine card.

One die cut valentine card of a woman holding a suitcase reading "ay ban gude girrul wit lotsa it, yu betcha."

Photographs and realia.

Photographs and realia created and collected by Harry J. Byers. Includes coins and banknotes, photographs of Harry with family and friends and more. Most of the materials were created or collected during Harry's time in Russia.

Byers, Harry J.

Postcard : Les rivales.

One postcard with the painting "rivals" by Nikolay Kasatkin. Verso reads "Dear Mother, May 13, this picture is so real I just had to send it. It looks just exactly like the village we lived in the far east & the women are just almost real. I'm feeling better mother, will be moving again in about 2 weeks. Violie will write in a few days. We send love. H &V" The letter is addressed to Mrs. Albert Scherbarth, West Monkton, Ontario, Canada.

Printing plate.

One printing plate used in the Kitchener-Waterloo Record of St. Basil's Cathedral.

Kitchener-Waterloo Record

Postcard : Old Inn in Berlin.

One postcard reading "Alte Schanke OLD INN Weinhandlung inh. Erich Haupt. Berlin W8. Unted den Linden 16. Telefon Zentrum 2736." Image shows the interior of a pub. Verso is blank


Diary maintained by Harry J. Byers during his time in Russia from 1930-1931. The diary is titled "Mile stones a five year diary", is ring-bound, and has ca. 202 one-sided leaves, with two days per leaf. The diary includes daily entries detailing general activities, conditions in Russia, places Harry and Violie Byers stayed, meals, sickness and health, agricultural details, how the Grain Trust Russian Five Year Plan was going, details of social activities and events, notes from friends, lists of books read while in Russia, and lists of names and addresses of acquaintances. Some entries are written by Harry's wife violet and a few include words in Russian.

Postcard : cooperation holiday in the country.

One postcard of a cooperation holiday in the country. Image shows a painting of coloured print of a celebration with people gathered outside with signs and what appears to be a picture of Lenin. Verso is blank.

Hamburg-Amerika Linie farewell dinner programme.

One programme for a farewell dinner aboard the S.S. New York of the Hamburg-Amerika Line held Thursday, October 15, 1931. The programme lists the menu and musical entertainment and has been signed by others on the ship.

Hamburg-Amerika Linie


One United States passport for Harry J. Byers and his wife Violet Byers. In the passport Harry is described as being 6 feet tall, having light brown hair and blue eyes, and a tattoo on his right arm. The passport also includes a photograph of Harry and Violet and visa stamps from countries they visited including Russia, Poland, Germany and the United States.

United States of America


One clipping from the Kitchener-Waterloo Record advertising a talk to be given by Harry J. Byers on his time in Russia.

Correspondence : Byers, Harry J. to Boyers, John

One item of correspondence from Harry J. Byers to John Boyers (his father in law) dated October 29, 1929. In the letter Harry mentions that he and Violet have recently married and their plans to head to Russia for work.

Address book.

One address book kept by Harry J. Byers. Includes lists of names and addresses of friends in North America as well as those met overseas. Also includes financial notes, Russian language translation notes, menus, etc.

Cunard Line menu.

One menu from the Cunard Line for a dinner held November 18, 1929. In attendance were Harry and Violet Byers as well as Mr and Mrs E. Poulson, Mr R. Robertson, Mr D. Lister and Mr J.M. Carlyle.

Cunard Line


Materials relating to the personal life of Harry J. Byers. Includes correspondence, ephemera, clippings, etc.

Byers, Harry J.

Up north, June 1944.

Snapshot of an unidentified woman, seated with a view of a lake behind her.

Byers, Harry J.

Infant sitting in chair.

Snapshot of an infant sitting in a chair. Caption on verso reads: "Age 10 months when the picture was taken & has 8 teeth."

Byers, Harry J.

Clark on horseback.

Snapshot of an Clark on horseback with [Harry Byers?] visible in the background.

Byers, Harry J.

Unidentified group.

Snapshot of members of the Byers family.

Back row: unidentified woman, unidentified man, Helen Bawman (nee Byers), unidentified man, Fred Byers and Marge Byers (nee Landwehr).

Front row: unidentified child, unidentified child, unidentified child

Byers, Harry J.

Unidentified men.

Snapshot of two unidentified men standing outside near what appears to be a brick works.

Byers, Harry J.

Two unidentified children in their first communion clothes.

Snapshot of 2 unidentified children wearing first communion clothing, and holding candles on a lawn in front of a house. Letter on verso reads: "To Kate, this is our youngest boy and the oldest
girl in their first communion suits they both went last fall, George
and Mary."

Byers, Harry J.

Unidentified woman.

Snapshot of an unidentified woman in a dress and a sun hat sitting outside.

Byers, Harry J.

Clark, Vivian and Dad, April 14 1930.

Snapshot of John Boyers and Clark, standing in front of a large brick building, with Vivian standing in the background, under one of the building's balconies.

Byers, Harry J.

This is Don and Pap.

Snapshot of John Boyers and Don (at right) sitting on the stairs of the front porch of a house. An unidentified woman is visible behind them looking out of a screen door.

Byers, Harry J.

Michigan City Annie Marge & kids.

Snapshot of Marge Byers (nee Landwehr) and a woman identified as Annie with children playing on a beach, at the edge of a large body of water.

Byers, Harry J.

Street in Grozny.

Snapshot of a city street in Grozny, with 4 unidentified individuals walking down it. Caption on verso reads: "Grozny. Photographer was --"

Byers, Harry J.

Two old sailors.

Snapshot of 2 unidentified individuals paddling a canoe in a lake, with land in the distance.

Byers, Harry J.

Orpha picking flowers beside a large building.

Snapshot of Orpha picking flowers from a bush beside a large building. Caption on verso reads: "This is Orphas [sic] picture she give [sic] Mick to send you Vi Mick said tell you that aunt Orpha was picking flowers from Mick to Vi and Jack. Mick is riting [sic] some to [?] [unintelligible from this point]."

Byers, Harry J.

Unidentified men.

Snapshot of Sam D. Bawman (centre) with two unidentified men standing on a sidewalk in a residential neighbourhood.

Byers, Harry J.

The wide open spaces.

Snapshot of a field with no trees, and small dots of animals and people on the horizon line.

Byers, Harry J.

Unidentified men in doorway.

Snapshot of two unidentified men standing in the doorway of a home. One man is offering a glass of an unidentified liquid to the other. Both are wearing aprons.

Byers, Harry J.

Jim and Marnie with bicycles.

Snapshot of 2 children identified as Jim and Marnie, standing in front of a house, on a sidewalk, with their bicycles. Caption on verso reads: "Jim 10 1/2 Marnie 11."

Byers, Harry J.


Snapshot of farmland with farm machinery in the foreground and buildings in the background.

Byers, Harry J.

Don outside of a house, holding a pipe.

Snapshot of Don holding a pipe with a house visible in the background. Caption on verso reads: "This is Dons [sic] picture I took of him Sunday and I told him I was going to send it to Vi and Jack he said all rite [sic] he sure thinks lots of me he is afel [sic] good harted [sic] I think he is nice looking dont [sic] you."

Byers, Harry J.

Reverend Huegli.

Snapshot of Reverend Huegli holding books with a car, house, road, and tree visible behind him. Caption on verso reads: "Rev. Huegli. Taken at Logan church July 1929."

Byers, Harry J.

Violet Byers.

Side profile snapshot of Violet Byers from the neck down.

Byers, Harry J.

Unidentified group outside building.

Snapshot of an unidentified group of people walking towards a building. The people are all seen from behind and include men, women, adults and children.

Byers, Harry J.

Group of people in the Court of the Little Theatre.

Informal group portrait of 7 unidentified individuals sitting by a fountain in a court. Caption on verso reads: "Note your big sis taken in the Court of the Little Theatre first of its kind in America and in the Old French Quarters a beautiful court, April 19 - 1930."

Byers, Harry J.

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