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Angus McGill Mowat, 1892-1977

Angus Mowat was was born on 19 November 1892 at Trenton, Ontario. He held a number of positions as chief librarian at Trenton, Belleville, Windsor, and Saskatoon, before being appointed in 1937 as Inspector of Public Libraries for the province of Ontario. He remained head of the provincial library office, a part of the Department of Education, until his retirement in 1960. He was a dynamic and positive force for library progress in Ontario, especially his advocacy for county and regional library service in rural and northern parts of the province.

Throughout his career he encouraged better quality collections for adults and children, professional staffing and library training, the necessity for improved finances, more efficient management by trustees and librarians, and upgraded or new buildings. He believed strongly that the 'personal touch' was essential for library service and that local effort, supplemented by provincial assistance, was the key ingredient in advancing local library development.

He retired, in 1960, and died at Kingston on 21 September 1977. In 1988, the Ontario government established the Angus Mowat Award of Excellence to recognize outstanding delivery of public library service.

Photo caption: Angus M. Mowat, c.1930
Photo source: University of Western Ontario
Page created on 2 August 2013
Last modified on


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