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Detailed Record


W.W. Francis Fonds

W.W. Francis Fonds

Physical Description

185 cm of textual records



Biographical Sketch / Administrative History

Born in Montreal in 1878, William Willoughby Francis earned his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore in 1902. After interning at Montreal’s Royal Victoria Hospital and spending some time in Europe to pursue post-graduate studies, Francis came back to Montreal where he opened a practice in 1906. He later became editor of the Canadian Medical Association Journal, then Registrar of the No.3 Canadian General Hospital in France during the First World War. When his second cousin Sir William Osler died in 1919, he donated his library to McGill University. Francis co-edited the catalogue of Sir William Osler’s library, the Bibliotheca Osleriana, and ran the Osler Library of the History of Medicine until his death in 1959.

Scope and Content

The fonds contains correspondence related to the Osler Library and its holdings with people such as Maude Abbott, Edward Archibald, William B. Bean, Edward Horton Bensley, Archibald Malloch, Casey Wood, as well as John Farquhar Fulton, Keeper of the Medical History Collections at Yale University’s library; the fonds also contains a typescript of talks by W.W. Francis (titled “Showman’s Patter”) about books and other items held in the Osler Library.

Finding Aids

Complete online inventory list available.

Custodial History

The fonds was generated by W.W. Francis during his time as Osler Librarian.


The documents are in English.

Source of Supplied Title Proper

Title based on the documents in the fonds.

Retrieval Number




Abbott, Maude E. (Maude Elizabeth), 1869-1940
Archibald, Edward William, 1872-1945
Bean, William B.
Bensley, Edward Horton, 1906-1995
Francis, W.W. (William Willoughby), 1878-1959
Fulton, John Farquhar, 1899-1960
Malloch, Thomas Archibald, 1887-1953
Osler Library of the History of Medicine
Wood, Casey A.