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Welcome to the University of Toronto Libraries’
Barren Lands Digital Collection

This site documents two exploratory surveys of the Barren Lands region west of Hudson Bay, in northern Manitoba and Saskatchewan and the area now known as Nunavut. Drawing on materials from the J.B. Tyrrell, James Tyrrell and related collections at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto, it includes over 5,000 images from original field notebooks, correspondence, photographs, maps and published reports.

"Boulder wall around island in Kasba Lake"

August 8, 1894

Contents of the Digital Collection

The digital collection consists chiefly of material describing the two Barren Lands expeditions of 1893 and 1894 for the Geological Survey of Canada. It also includes material on the Hudson Bay Expedition of 1885 and the 1900 survey of the area between Great Slave Lake and Hudson Bay.

1893 Expedition
Overview | Interactive chronology | Interactive map

1894 Expedition
Overview | Interactive chronology | Interactive map

About J.B. Tyrrell

J.B. Tyrrell was a geologist in the employ of the Geological Survey of Canada when he led two expeditions to the Barren Lands in 1893 and 1894.

Biographical sketch | Detailed illustrated chronology

About James W. Tyrrell

J.B. Tyrrell's younger brother James accompanied him on the 1893 Barren Lands expedition, as surveyor and interpreter.

Biographical sketch

Expedition Maps

Map showing the routes of all expeditions, with links to interactive maps of the Barren Lands expeditions.

Links to Maps
All routes | Aboriginal Maps