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- Pentland, H. Clare
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(abbreviated from the "Introduction" to Paul Phillips' edition of Pentland's Labour and Capital in Canada 1650-1860 )
Clare Pentland was born October 17, 1914, on a farm near Justice, Manitoba, a town some ten miles north-east of Brandon. His father was a farmer, later a trucker, his mother a school teacher. The Pentland family, however, were not recent immigrants to Canada. Clare's great-great-grandfather, an Ulster-Scot hand-loom weaver, emigrated to Canada from County Down, Ireland in 1821, settling first at Amherst Island, near Kingston, Ontario, where he practiced the dual vocations of farmer and weaver. His son, John, continued the agrarian-artisan tradition, becoming a carpenter . . . In 1843, the family moved to homestead in the Huron Tract, eight miles north of Goderich.
John's son (Clare's grandfather), Thomas, continued the westward move to the frontier, homesteading near Justice in 1881 where he combined farming with blacksmithing. This was the limit of the westward movement. The Pentland family became well established in the Elton municipality around Justice, and a Pentland has been reeve of the area for a good part of its political history. It was there that Clare's father grain-farmed and began his trucking business. While Clare was still a child, his family moved to Brandon to develop the business, largely in shipping cattle to the packers.
Clare grew up in Brandon, graduating from the Collegiate in 1931 and the Brandon Normal School in 1933. This was followed by three years of teaching in small country school houses at Whirlpool, a soldier settlement area near Clear. Lake, and at Ericson . . . He returned to university in 1936 and four years later, in 1940, graduated with a B.A. in Economics from Brandon College. . . While he attended university, he worked as an attendant at the Brandon Mental Hospital . . . It was also at the hospital that he met a young nurse Harriet Brook, who was later to become his wife. The following summer found him working as a brakeman on the CPR running between Brandon and Broadview. . .
The outbreak of war did not immediately interrupt Pentland's renewed educational program. From 1940 to 1942, he attended the University of Oregon where he obtained his Master's . . .
Almost immediately after completing his thesis in the early summer of 1942, Pentland enlisted in the Army and while undergoing training in British Columbia married Harriet in the fall of 1942 in Vancouver. After officer training near Victoria and artillery training at Brandon and Brockville, he went overseas in February of 1944 where he was transferred to the infantry as an education officer. He returned to Canada and to university, this time in Toronto, in the spring of 1946, under the Veterans Assistance Program and by 1948 completed all the requirements but the thesis for his Ph.D.. . He lectured briefly at Toronto, from 1947-1949, before returning to his native province as Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Manitoba in 1949. He remained at Manitoba for the remainder of his career. . . Finally. . the thesis was presented and defended late in 1960 and the degree conferred in 1961 . . .
In 1962-63, Pentland spent a sabbatical in Cambridge, England. Again in 1969-1970, he spent a sabbatical in England, this time at the University of Sussex working on parish population studies. Unfortunately, failing health prevented him from completing this work and further refining and developing the ideas introduced in his 1965 paper to the Third International Conference on Economic History in Munich.
Despite his pursuit of historical demography in the 1960's Pentland was also able to research and write his second major and influential unpublished manuscript, "A Study of the Changing Social, Economic, and Political Background of the Canadian System of Industrial Relations", commissioned by the federally-appointed Task Force on Labour Relations . . .
The 1960's were intensely productive years for Pentland. In addition to his population research and Task Force report, he also pursued his interest in technological change, producing three major reports for both provincial and federal agencies on skills, training and technological change plus a number of lesser reviews on related issues.
Unfortunately, this level of intellectual activity could not be maintained. Heart problems plagued the last ten years of his life, robbing him of his stamina, a terrible frustration for a man so dedicated to his teaching and his work. Yet despite this he shouldered a heavy administrative load in university affairs, as a member of Senate from 1963 to 1966 and again from 1969 to 1976, and as a member of the Board of Governors representing the Senate from 1973 to 1976. He also served on numerous university and Faculty Association committees as well as continuing to teach, write and research. Two articles (published posthumously) and two reviews were the primary academic output of the 1970's before his premature death on October 13, 1978.
Chronology of Important Dates
1914 Harry Clare Pentland born October 17 to Mr. and Mrs. H.M. Pentland, near Justice, Manitoba
1931 Graduated from Brandon Collegiate Institute
1933 Graduated from Brandon Normal School 1933-36 Taught in rural Manitoba
1940 B.A., Brandon College, University of Manitoba
1942 M.A., University of Oregon; married Harriet Brook by whom he had three sons: David, Don, John
1942-46 Canadian Army
1946-49 Doctoral studies and teaching, University of Toronto
1949-78 Dept. of Economics, University of Manitoba
1961 Ph.D., University of Toronto
1961-62 "A Study of Labour Skills in Reference to Manitoba's Economic Future" for the Committee on Manitoba's Economic Future. Unpublished.
1962-63 Sabbatical leave, University of Cambridge
1963-65 President, Manitoba Historical Society
1965 "Population and Labour Supply in Britain in the Eighteen Century": paper presented to the third International Conference of Economic History, Munich
1965 "Implication of Automation for the Employment and Training of White Collar Workers in Manitoba", for the Manitoba Economic Consultative Board. Unpublished
1967-68 "A Study of the Changing Social, Economic and Political Background of the Canadian System of Industrial Relations", for the Task Force on Labour Relations. Unpublished
1968-69 "Human Adjustment to Technological Change: The Case of the Manitoba Rolling Mills.:`, for the Dept. of Manpower and Immigration. Unpublished
1969-70 Sabbatical leave, University of Sussex
1978 Died 13 October, at Winnipeg
1981 Labour and Capital in Canada 1650-1860: published version of doctoral thesis
Scope and content
The H. Clare Pentland Papers comprise a large part of the professional papers from Pentland's academic and public career, extending from his undergraduate studies (1938) to the posthumous publication of his doctoral thesis (1981). Included are student papers and reading and lecture notes from Brandon College, University of Oregon and University of Toronto, and many portions of drafts of the doctoral thesis. There is material relating to the history, administration and curriculum of the University of Manitoba Department of Economics, and to broader university and educational concerns.
Pentland's activity as an economic historian is represented both by major pieces of research either pursued independently'. as during his sabbatical leaves, or commissioned by government agencies; and by numerous scholarly articles, lectures, book reviews and the radio talks which demonstrate his sense of responsibility for public education. His practical involvement in social issues appears in the records of his work as arbitrator or conciliator in labour disputes, and of his intervention in the controversies arising from the Brandon Packers strike and the Crowe case at United College. Papers by his graduate students show Pentland as a critical but sensitive teacher.
Personal documentation is present only incidentally. The considerable correspondence is largely confined to professional business. The little that is primarily of personal interest has survived through "re-cycling" in drafts of other work and is to be traced through the index to the correspondence.
Immediate source of acquisition
A. Correspondence, 1933-1977
B. Student Papers, 1939-1949
C. Doctoral Dissertation, n.d.
D. Doctoral Dissertation Documents, 1947-1960
E. University of Manitoba. Dept. of Economics, [ca. 1971]-1977
F. University of Manitoba - Administration, [ca. 1952]-1977 and n.d.
G. Education. Economics, [ca. 1957]-1969 and n.d.
H. Population and Labour Supply, 1964-1971 and n.d.
I. Lapford Demographic Study, [19-?]
J. Labour Relations Legislation, 1959-1976
K. Task Force on Labour Relations. Study 1 (a), n.d.
L. Task Force on Labour Relations, 1967 and n.d.
M. Manitoba Rolling Mills Report, 1968-1977 and n.d.
N. Arbitration/Conciliation, 1960-1976
O. Arbitration/Conciliation: The Crowe Case, 1958-1974
P. Articles, Lectures, Etc., 1950-1974
Q. Radio Talks, [1966?]-1969
R. Lecture Notes, Handouts, Reviews, 1949 and n.d.
S. Book Reviews, Evaluations, n.d.
T. Notes on Readings, n.d.
U. Newsclippings, n.d.
V. Papers, Etc. By Students, n.d.
W. Miscellaneous Papers: by Author, n.d.
X. Miscellaneous Papers: by Topic, n.d.
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Revised by N. Courrier (2019).