University of Guelph Acquires Sleeman Collection, Launches Companion Website


GUELPH, ON – The University of Guelph has announced that it has acquired the Sleeman Collection, an archive of documents that chronicle the history of Sleeman Brewing and the family behind it.

Founded in 1851 by John H. Sleeman as the Silver Creek Brewery, the Sleeman brewing dynasty has had a storied history that has included a bankruptcy, smuggling and tax evasion charges, and a 50-year brewing ban that ended in the 1980s, after which the brewery was relaunched as Sleeman Brewing & Malting Co. by current chairman John W. Sleeman.

According to a press release announcing the acquisition, the collection features “photographs, business records, newspapers, correspondence and other materials showing the brewing dynasty’s impact on Canada in the past 150 years, from industry advancement to infrastructure to politics.”

The collection will be officially unveiled on Wednesday April 3rd at 2:30 PM with an event in the Academic Town Square on the 1st floor of the McLaughlin Library. Speakers will include John W. Sleeman, beer historian Ian Bowering, and  Rebecca Graham, CIO and chief librarian of the University.

In addition to the archive of original documents, the University will also be launching a companion website for the Sleeman Collection, with an initial version now online.

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