Fonds MS-209 - William A. Griesbach fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

William A. Griesbach fonds

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  • Textual record

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on contents of fonds.

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • 1893 - 1943 (Creation)
    Griesbach, William A.

Physical description area

Physical description

4 m of textual records

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Name of creator


Biographical history

The son of one of the first North West Mounted Police officers, William Antrobus Griesbach was born in Fort Qu'Appelle in 1878. His father soon became the commanding officer at Fort Saskatchewan and he spent his early childhood in the Edmonton area before going to school in Winnipeg. At the age of 22 Griesbach enlisted in the Canadian Mounted Rifles and served with distinction in the Boer War in South Africa. He returned to Edmonton to embark on a career as a lawyer and in 1903 was elected as an alderman. In December 1906 Griesbach ran for the Mayor's office and was duly elected. He was 29 years old at the time and thus became Canada's youngest mayor. He remains the youngest mayor in Edmonton's history. After a short career in municipal politics, William Griesbach was elected MP for Edmonton in 1917, a position he held until his appointment to the Senate in 1921. However, the military was always at the centre of Griesbach's life. In 1906 he single-handedly organized the 9th Alberta Dragoons and in 1914 he recruited and organized the 49th Battalion, later known as the Loyal Edmonton Regiment. In 1917 he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General in command of the 1st Infantry on the western front. His troops were confronted with some of the heaviest fighting of the war. He was decorated for his service and later became the commanding officer of the Canadian army in western Canada. William Griesbach died in 1945, shortly before the publication of his autobiography "I Remember".

Custodial history

Gordon Armstrong was the Commanding Officer of the Loyal Edmonton Regiment (LER) at the time of the donation. Though Mr. Griesbach was involved in the Loyal Edmonton Regiment, it is unclear how the regiment acquired his papers.

Scope and content

The fonds consists of political, military, and personal papers.
Political papers consist of reports, correspondence, financial documents concerning the City of Edmonton and the City of Strathcona between 1892 and 1935. There is also a 1912 Edmonton Subdivision map (EAM-178).
Military papers include correspondence, clippings, programs, pamphlets and other materials related to Mr. Griesbach's military career and created between 1919 and ca.1943.
Personal papers include correspondence, financial documents, programmes and other materials relating to Griesbach's personal life.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

This fonds was donated to the City of Edmonton Archives by Gordon Armstrong in 1958.


The material was arranged by the archivist based on the different aspects of Griesbach’s life (political, military, personal) and then in chronological order.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

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Restrictions on access

There are no restrictions on access.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Copyright may apply.

Finding aids

Finding aid available online.

Associated materials


No further accruals are expected.

General note

Accession numbers: Unknown

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City of Edmonton Archives

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Rules for Archival Description (RAD)
Archives Society of Alberta Subject Terms



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