Rankin, Colin, 1826-1921.
Colin Rankin fonds. - 1799-1920.

13 cm. of textual records. - 1 photograph.

View full finding aid of Colin Rankin fonds (PDF)

Colin Rankin was born July 29, 1826. He was married twice, first to Rebecca Scott and then in 1873 to Rebecca Deacon. Engaged by Sir George Simpson in March 1848, he became a Chief Trader for the Hudson's Bay Company in 1868, a Factor in 1872, and a Chief Factor in 1879. He was in charge of Mattawa Post for several years; left for Lachine in August, 1853; then to St. Maurice district; spent the winter at Kickendatch Post; was called to Montreal in August, 1854, and appointed to succeed Chief Trader Anderson in charge of Bersimis Post. In June, 1856, he was appointed to take charge of St. Maurice district, where the Company was erecting a Post and constructing new buildings. He was ordered to Montreal and appointed to Lake Superior district in 1860. In July, 1866, he was transferred to Saguenay district and there remained until November 1863, when he was ordered to take charge of Simcoe and Ottawa River districts. In 1873 he was appointed to Temiskaming district, until 1882, when headquarters moved to Mattawa, Ont. Mr. Rankin retired from the service in 1898. He was mayor of Mattawa and was a magistrate there as well (n.d.). He was also commissioned to be a Justice of the Peace in and for the North West Territories (1874). Colin Rankin died April 20, 1921.


Fonds consists of correspondence, documents, journals, and a photograph relating to Colin Rankin's activity as a Fur Trader for the Hudson's Bay Company. Included are three journals kept by Donald McKay, Fur Trader, between 1799 and 1806, which were acquired by Rankin probably during his stay in the Temiskaming district.


  • Title based on the contents of the fonds.
  • Two grandsons of Colin Rankin donated the contents of this fonds. Colin Rankin's papers were donated by John L. Rankin, Lac Marois, Quebec in 1966. Donald McKay's Journals and biographical information copied from the Rankin Family Bible were donated by J.E.R McDougall, Hollywood, Calif., also in 1966.
  • A microfilm copy of this fonds is available in the Archives of Ontario and is listed in Guide to the Archives of Ontario (1985) as MS 65.
  • Finding aid available.
  • Further material relating to Colin Rankin can be found at the Archives of Ontario in their Hudson Bay Company Collection in MU 1390 McKay-Rankin Letter, and in MU 1392-MU 1400 Temiskaming District Correspondence and Accounts. The Hudson's Bay Company Archives at the Provincial Archives of Manitoba also holds five letters to Colin Rankin, 1877-78, and a small personal pocket diary containing entries for part of August and Sept. 1882.

Call number: GA3