bibliography 5: Canadian History of Business

Reading List with Annotation:

This bibliography lists works that serve to introduce Business History in Canada. It is not comprehensive, but will be expanded, and have links added, on an ongoing basis. Additional resources can be found by searching under such related subject headings as: Accounting History; Advertising History; Economic History; Commerce History; Corporations; Industries, etc. Entries marked by asterisk * might serve as primary sources.

1) Canadian Business History

a) Books:

i) General Survey/Representative Essay Collections

Atkinson, Michael M., and William Donald Cloeman. The state, business, and industrial change in Canada, Vol. 13 State and Economic Life. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1989. [Includes bibliographical references and index. Description:].

Austin, Barbara J. Capitalizing knowledge: essays on the history of business education in Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2000. Electronic Resources.

Baskerville, Peter. Concise History of Business in Canada. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1994. [Introduction, Chapter 20, Epilogue].

Bliss, Michael. A living profit: studies in the social history of Canadian business, 1883-1911. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1974.

______. Northern enterprise: five centuries of Canadian business. Toronto : McClelland and Stewart, 1987. [Introduction and Chapter 19].

Easterbrook, W.T., and H.G. Aitken, Canadian Economic History. Toronto, 1956.

Macmillan, David S. Canadian business history; selected studies, 1497-1971. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1972.

Martin, Joe. Relentless change: a casebook for the study of Canadian business history. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2010.

Naylor, R. T. The history of Canadian business, 1867-1914. 2 vols. Toronto: J. Lorimer, 1975.

Porter, Glenn, and Robert D. Cuff, eds. Enterprise and national development: essays in Canadian business and economic history. Toronto: Hakkert, 1973. [Essays first appeared in a special issue of Business history review 47, no. 2 (summer, 1973)].

Shortt, Adam. [“father of Canadian business history”] Canada and its Provinces. 23 vols. (1913-1917) [vol.s 9 & 10 deal with post-Confederation industrial development, specific sections on business, on banking. In addition Shortt edited a 2 volume set of documents on currency, exchange and finance during French regime (1926)].

Taylor, Graham D. A concise history of business in Canada. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1994. [Description:].

Traves, Tom, ed. Essays in Canadian business history. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1984.

ii) Selective/Topical/Localized Studies

Anastakis, Dimitry. Auto Pact: Creating a Borderless North American Auto Industry, 1960-1971. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005.

Armstrong, Christopher. Blue skies and boiler rooms: buying and selling securities in Canada, 1870-1940. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1997.

* Austin, B.F., ed. Woman: maiden, wife and mother a study of woman’s worth and work in all departments of her manifold life, education, business, society, housekeeping, health, physical culture, marriage and kindred matters. Toronto: Linscott Pub. Co., [1898?]. [Microfiche: CIHM no. 07375]. [“Illustrated with many engravings, including portraits and biographical sketches of numerous noted women.” Includes index.]

Bellamy, Matthew J. Profiting the crown: Canada’s Polymer Corporation, 1942-1990. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2005.

Bliss, Michael. A Canadian millionaire: the life and business times of Sir Joseph Flavelle, Bart., 1858-1939. Toronto: Macmillan of Canada, 1978.

Buik, William A. Noranda Mines Limited: a study in business and economic history. M.A. Thesis, University of Toronto, 1958. [microfilm, 1973: AS 40 no.16095].

Careless, J.M.S. [James Maurice Stockford] Brown of the Globe. Toronto, Macmillan, 1959.

______. Frontier and metropolis: regions, cities, and identities in Canada before 1914. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1989. [Electronic Resources].

Carr, David. Candymaking in Canada: the history and business of Canada’s confectionery industry. Toronto: Dundurn Group, 2003. [Electronic Resources].

Carter, Sarah, Simon M. Evans, Bill Yeo, eds. Cowboys, ranchers and the cattle business: cross-border perspectives on ranching history. Calgary: University of CalgaryPress, 2000. [Electronic Resources].

*Carver, Thomas Nixon. Government control of the liquor business in Great Britain and the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, American Branch, 1919.

Chambers, Edward J. Alberta’s labour force and employment structure over the last quarter century: assessing the changes. Edmonton: University of Alberta, Faculty of Business, 1998.

Clark, E. Ritchie. The IDB: a history of Canada’s Industrial Development Bank. Toronto: Published for the Federal Business Development Bank by University of Toronto Press, 1985.

*Clark, W.C. [William Clifford] Business cycles and the depression of 1920-1. Kingston: Jackson Press, 1921.

Coates, Kenneth. The keystone province: an illustrated history of Manitoba enterprise. Burlington: Windsor Publications (Canada), 1988.

Craven, Paul. “An impartial umpire” : industrial relations and the Canadian state 1900-1911, Vol. 3, The state and economic life. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1980. [Description:].

______, ed. Labouring lives: work and workers in nineteenth century Ontario. Toronto: University of Toronto Press for the Ontario Historical Studies Series, 1995.

Creighton, Donald. The empire of the St. Lawrence. Toronto, Macmillan Co. of Canada, 1956.

Cross, Michael S., and Gregory S. Kealey, eds. The consolidation of capitalism, 1896-1929.  Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1983.

Davies, Charles. Bread men: how the Westons built an international food empire. Toronto : Key Porter Books, 1987.

Forbes, Elizabeth. With enthusiasm and faith: history of the Canadian Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs, la Fédération canadienne des clubs de femmes de carrières libérales et commerciales, 1930-1972. Ottawa: Canadian Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs, 1974.

Forster, Jakob Johann Benjamin. A conjunction of interests: business, politics, and tariffs, 1825-1879. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1986. [Description:].

Fournier, Lori. Building business: a history of the Business School at Humber. Toronto: Business School at Humber, 2004.

Glazerbrook’. History of Transportation in Canada.

Heron, Craig. Working in Steel. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1988. [Esp. Chapter 3].

______. Booze: a distilled history. Toronto: Between the Lines, 2003. [Electronic Resources].

Heron, Craig, and Robert Storey, eds. On the job confronting the labour process in Canada. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press,1986. [Electronic Resources].

*Innis, Harold A. The Hudson Bay Railway. New York, American Geographical Society, 1930.

______. The fur trade in Canada: an introduction to Canadian economic history. [1930] Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999. [Electronic Resources; see also 1975 ed. “reprinting of the revised edition of 1956, with a revised foreword from the 1962 edition].

______. The cod fisheries: the history of an international economy. [1940] Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1954.

______. The bias of communication. [1951] Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008.

Lamontagne, Maurice. Business cycles in Canada: the postwar experience and policy directions, 1917-1983. Toronto: Published for the Canadian Institute for Economic Policy by J. Lorimer & Co., 1984.

Lower. A.R.M. The North American Assault on the Canadian Forest: A History of the Lumber Trade between Canada and the United States. Toronto, 1936.

McCalla, Douglas. The Upper Canada trade, 1834-72 : a study of the Buchanans’ business. Toronto : University of Toronto Press, 1979.

McDowall, Duncan. Quick to the Frontier. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1993. [Esp. Chapter 3].

*Henry John McPhillips. McPhillips’ alphabetical and business directory of the District of Saskatchewan, N.W.T. : together with brief historical sketches of Prince Albert, Battleford and other settlements in the District, 1888. Qu’Appelle, N.W.T.: Printed at “The Progress” Book and Job Office, 1888.

Mellett, Edward Bruce. From stopwatch to strategy: a history of the first twenty-five years of the Canadian Association of Management Consultants. Toronto: Canadian Association of Management Consultants, 1988.

Mills, Rachel Joanne. Gender, ethnicity, and religion in the context of entrepreneurship: the Loewen lumber businessmen of Steinbach, Manitoba, 1877-1985. Ph.D. Diss., Winnipeg: University of Manitoba and University of Winnipeg, 2003.

Monod, David L. Store wars: shopkeepers and the culture of mass marketing, 1890-1939. Toronto : University of Toronto Press, 1996.

Mouat, Jeremy. The business of power: hydro-electricity in southeastern British Columbia, 1897-1997. Victoria, BC: Sono Nis Press, 1997.

Kilbourn, William. Pipeline: Transcanada and the great debate, a history of business and politics, 1926-1995. Toronto: Clarke, Irwin, 1970.

Klassen, Henry C. A business history of Alberta. Calgary: University of Calgary Press, 1999. Electronic Resources.

Nish, Cameron. François-Étienne Cugnet, 1719-1751 : entrepreneur et entreprises en Nouvelle-France. Montréal: Fides, 1975.

Rich, E.E.

Ross, Becki. Burlesque West: showgirls, sex, and sin in postwar Vancouver. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2009.

Sweeny, Robert, with Richard Rice, and Brian Young, eds. A guide to the history and records of selected Montreal businesses before 1947 / Guide pour l’étude d’enterprises montréalaises et leurs archives avant 1947. Montreal: Montreal Business History Project, 1978.

Tremblay, Miville. Le sang jaune de Bombardier la gestion de Laurent Beaudoin. Sainte-Foy: Presses de l’Université du Québec, 1994. [Electronic Resources].

Waddell, M. Ross. The Exchange district: an illustrated guide to Winnipeg’s historic commercial district. Winnipeg: Heritage Winnipeg Corporation, 1989.

Wei Djao. Being Chinese: voices from the diaspora. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2003. [Description: QEII]

Young, Brian J. In its corporate capacity: the Seminary of Montreal as a business institution, 1816-1876. Kingston and Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 1986.

b) Articles:

Anastakis, Dimitry. “Building a ‘New Nova Scotia’: State Intervention, the Auto Industry, and the Case of Volvo in Halifax, 1963-1968.” Acadiensis (Autumn, 2004).

______. “From Independence to Integration: The Corporate Evolution of the Ford Motor Company of Canada, 1904-2004.” Business History Review 78, no. 2 (2004): 214-253.

Armstrong, Frederick H. [Associate professor of history, University of Western Ontario, London ON] “Approaches to Business History in Canada: The Historian’s Approach.” Proceedings of the Fourteenth 4nnual Meeting of the Business History Conference (London, ON: University of Western Ontario, 1967): 16-33.

Ban Seng Hoe. “Enduring Hardship: The Chinese Laundry in Canada.” Mercury Series, Cultural Studies Paper 76 (Gatineau: Canadian Museum of Civilization, 2003).

Borins, Sandford F. “World War II Crown Corporations: Their Wartime Role and Peacetime Privatization.” Canadian Public Administration 25, no. 3 (1982): 380-404.

Canada: special issue. Business History Review 47, no. 2 (1973): 142-287.

Craven, Paul. “The law of master and servant in mid-nineteenth-century Ontario.” In Essays in the History of Canadian Law I, ed. D.H. Flaherty. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1981. [topic: Business and Law; paternalism]

Craven, Paul, and T.D. Traves. “Dimensions of paternalism: discipline and culture in Canadian railway operations in the 1850s,” in On The Job, ed. Craig Heron and Robert Storey. 47-74. Montreal & Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 1986. [topic: Managerial strategy, paternalism]

______. “Canadian railways as manufacturers, 1850-80.” Canadian Historical Association, Historical Papers, 1983. Reprinted in Perspectives on Canadian Economic History, ed. Douglas McCalla, Copp Clark Pitman, 1987, and in A History of  Ontario: Selected Readings, ed. Michael J. Piva,Copp Clark Pitman, 1988.

Cruikshank Ken, and Nancy Bouchier. “Blighted Areas and Obnoxious Industries: Constructing Environmental Inequality on an Industrial Waterfront, Hamilton, Ontario, 1890-1960.” Environmental History 9, no. 3 (2004): 464-496.

Forster, Ben. chapter on business history. In Canadian History: A Reader’s Guide, Vol. 2. ed. Owram

Forster, Ben, and Kris Inwood. “The Diversity of Industrial Experience: Cabinet and Furniture Manufacture in Late Nineteenth Century Ontario.” Enterprise and Society 4 (June 2003): 326-371.

Girard, Philip. “Taking Litigation Seriously: The Market Wharf Controversy at Halifax, 1785-1820.” In Essays in the History of Canadian Law: In honour of R.C.B. Risk, ed. G. Baline Baker and Phillips. 213-240. Toronto: University of Toronto Press for the Osgoode Society for Canadian Legal History, 1999. [topic: Business and Law; infrastructure ownership/access]

Heron, Craig. “The Second Industrial Revolution in Canada, 1890-1930.” In Class, Community, and the Labour Movement: Wales and Canada, 1850-1930, ed. Diane Hopkin, and Gregory S. Kealey. 48-61. St. John’s, 1989.

Inwood, Kris Edward. “Introduction: Women, property and legal change.” Women, Property and the Law, a special issue of the journal Continuity and Change, (February 2004).

______.  The Persistence of Old Technology, a special issue of the journal Material History Review (Fall 1992).

Kenny, James L., and Andrew Secord. “Public Power for Industry: A Re-examination of the New Brunswick Case, 1940-1960.” Acadiensis 30, no. 2 (2001): 84-108.

Klassen, Henry C. “Entrepreneurship in the Canadian West: The Enterprises of A.E. Cross, 1886-1920.” Western Historical Quarterly 22, no. 3 (1991): 313-333.

Leake, Jonathan. “Scientists say dolphins should be treated as ‘non-human persons.” The Sunday Times, via Times Online (3 January 2010),

McDowall, Duncan. “Business History as Public History: One of Canada’s Infant Industries.” Journal of Canadian Studies (Fall 1985).

Nelles, H.V. “Commerce in a Cold Climate: Bliss on Canadian Business History.” Review of Northern Enterprise: Five Centuries of Canadian Business, by Michael Bliss. The Business History Review 62, no. 2 (Summer, 1988): 310-316.

Newell, Diane. “The Rationality of Mechanization in the Pacific Salmon Canning Industry before the Second World War.” Business History Review 62, no. 4 (1988): 626-655.

Norrie, Kenneth, et al. “The Staples Thesis.” In A History of the Canadian Economy, 3rd ed., Norrie, et al. xviii-xxi. Scarborough, 2002.

______. “The Modern Era: Since 1945.” In A History of the Canadian Economy, 3rd ed., Norrie, et al. 363- … Scarborough, 2002.

______. “Growth and Prosperity, 1946-1973.” In A History of the Canadian Economy, 3rd ed., Norrie, et al. …-387. Scarborough, 2002.

Thorburn, H.G. Review of A Living Profit, by Michael Bliss. Canadian Public Policy 2, no. 1 (Winter 1976): 121- 122.

Wong, Lloyd L. “Globalization and Transnational Migration: A Study of Recent Chinese Capitalist Migration from the Asian Pacific to Canada.” []

c) Media:

“Chinese Immigration to Canada: A Tale of Perseverance.”

LAC. “The Early Chinese Canadians, 1858-1947 The History Working Across Canada: Laundries and Cafés.”
Portage Avenue dreams of castles in the sky. Winnipeg: Prairie Public Broadcasting, 2004. [Video].

The Voyageurs. Montreal: National Film Board of Canada, 1964. [Video].

d) Reference Works:

Dictionary of Canadian Biography.

Brown, Barbara. Canadian Business And Economics: A Guide To Sources Of Information.

Craven. Canadian company histories: A Checklist. Toronto : Gale Canada, 1996. [Includes bibliographical references and index.]

Geahigan, Priscilla. U.S. and Canadian Businesses, 1955-1987: A Bibliography (1988).

Canadian Encyclopedia.

2) Relevant Atlantic & Pacific World

a) Books

Chandler, Alfred Dupont. The visible hand: the managerial revolution in American business. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 1977. [Introduction, General Propositions, Chapter 3, Conclusion.]

Freyer, Tony Allan. Regulating big business : antitrust in Great Britain and America, 1880 to 1990. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992.

Grassby, Richard. The business community of seventeenth-century England. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995.



b) Articles

Anchordoguy, Marie. “Nippon Telephone and Telegraph Company (NTT) and the Building of the Telecommunications Industry in Japan.” Business History Review 75, no. 3 (2001): 507-541.

Fulcher, James. “What is Capitalism?” In Capitalism: A Very Short Introduction, by James Fulcher. 1-18. Oxford, 2004.

McCraw, Thomas K., and Richard S. Tedlow. “Henry Ford, Alfred Sloan, and the Three Phases of Marketing.” In Creating Modern Capitalism, ed. T.K. McCraw. 301-348. Cambridge, 1997.

c) Reference

Derdak, Thomas, ed. International Directory of Company Histories.

Jones, Geoffrey, and Jonathan Zeitlin, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Business History. New York: Oxford University Press, 2008. [Publicity description:].

Nasrallah, Wahib. United States Corporation Histories: A bibliography, 1965-1985. New York: Garland, 1987.

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