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Hugh Hornby Langton

b. Aug. 29, 1862, Québec City, QC; d. Sept. 30, 1953, Toronto, ON

Hugh Hornby Langton c.1910s. Credit University of Toronto.


1883 BA (Toronto)
1887 Graduate of Law Society of Upper Canada [did not practice]
1905 MA. (Toronto)


1887-1892 Registrar and Assistant Librarian, University of Toronto
1892-1923 University Librarian, University of Toronto
1895-1896 College Librarian, Colorado College, Colorado Springs [temporarily on leave to restore health]
1898-1919 Joint editor with George M. Wrong, Review of Historical Publications Relating to Canada
1914-1919 Joint editor with George M. Wrong, Chronicles of Canada series
1923-1940 Editor and translator for publications of the Champlain Society

Publications (major works):


Langton, H.H. (Oct. 1896). “Systems of shelf notation.” Library Journal 21(10): 441-43.

Langton, H.H. (1898). “Co-operation in a catalogue of periodical publications.” In: Transactions and proceedings of the Second International Library Conference held in London, July 13-16, 1897: pp. 122-125. [London: The Conference].

Langton, H.H. (Feb. 1900). “A study of Gerhart Hauptmann.” East & West 1 (4): 108-116.

Langton, H.H. (1903). “Canada and public libraries.” Library Journal 28 (Conference no. 44): C43-C46.

Langton, H.H. (Sept. 1903). “Music study vs. performance.” Journal of Pedagogy 16 (1): 59-63.

Langton, H.H. (Feb. 1904). “University libraries.” University of Toronto Monthly 4 (5): 121-126.

Langton, H.H. (May 1904). “What a permanent library commission can do to aid libraries [in Ontario].” Public Libraries 9 (5): 212-216.

Langton, H.H. (May 1911). “The new library building.” University of Toronto Monthly 11 (7): 294-301 [new wing extension].


Langton, H.H., W.J. Alexander, and A.B. Macallum, (1906). The University of Toronto and its colleges, 1827-1906. [Toronto: University Library].

Langton, H.H. and G.H. Locke (1913), eds. A joint catalogue of the periodicals, publications and transactions of societies … to be found in the various libraries of the City of Toronto. 2nd ed. [Toronto: University of Toronto Press].

Langton, H.H. (1927). James Loudon and the University of Toronto. [Toronto: University of Toronto Press].

Langton, H.H. (1929). Sir Daniel Wilson, a memoir. [Edinburgh: T. Nelson].

Langton, H.H., ed. (1937). Travels in the interior inhabited parts of North America in the years 1791 and 1792 by Patrick Campbell. [Toronto: Champlain Society].

Langton, H.H. and E.F. Burton (1939). Sir John Cunningham McLennan, a memoir. [Toronto: University of Toronto Press].

Wrong, G.R., ed., and H.H. Langton, trans. (1939). The long journey to the country of the Hurons by Father Gabriel Sagard. [Toronto: Champlain Society, 1939].

Langton, H.H. (1940). James Douglas: a memoir. [Toronto: University of Toronto].

Langton, H.H., ed. (1950). A gentlewoman in Upper Canada: the journals of Anne Langton. [Toronto: Clarke, Irwin].


President, Ontario Library Association, 1902-1903
President, Champlain Society, 1934-1936
Member of American Library Association, committee work on Public Documents
University of Toronto executive positions with Alumni Association and University of Toronto Studies series published by the Library (1897-1929).


Hugh Langton was a prolific and accomplished scholar, author, editor, and translator from a noteworthy Toronto family. He was particularly interested in the history of Canada and the University of Toronto. Langton managed the University main library through a difficult transition period after the disastrous fire of 1890. By the time of his retirement, hastened by ill-health in 1923, the facilities, collections, staffing and services at the main library had been re-established and strengthened on a firm foundation for his successors. Although Langton’s library efforts and publications are seldom cited, his scholarly works are recognized as lasting contributions to Canadian history. Together with his friend, George R. Wrong, Langton edited and published an annual review of Canadian historical publications from 1898 to 1919 and their work led to the creation of the Canadian Historical Review. He was also active on the executive of the Champlain Society, eventually serving as President in 1934-1936. Langton’s career is an classic example of the male scholar-administrator-librarian model that prevailed in the management of Canadian college and university libraries into the first half of the twentieth century.


The University of Toronto Archives holds the textual records for Hugh H. Langton fonds, CA UTA 1464-2.
Blackburn, Robert H. (1989). Evolution of the heart: a history of the University of Toronto Library up to 1981: pp. 101-130. Toronto: University of Toronto Library.
W. Stewart Wallace (1953). “Hugh Hornby Langton.” Canadian Historical Review 34: 388.
“Hugh H. Langton.” Globe and Mail 3 Oct. 1953, 6 [editorial].

biographies/hugh-hornby-langton.txt · Last modified: 2023/11/23 16:03