Source: Laurentian University Archives, Sudbury, Ontario
P208 Leslie M. Sheridan fonds
2015 (Originals ca1930-1946)
3 moving images
Born in Detroit, Michigan, on March 13, 1882, Leslie Mitchell Sheridan(1881-1969) was the son of a sawmill owner operating out of Missoula, Montana.
Sheridan graduated from the University of Montana in 1903 with a degree in engineering. In June 1907 he married Clara Peters daughter of Mr & Mrs Joseph Peters, in Anaconda, Montana.
After her death on March 13 1940, Sheridan married Ila Janes on April 6, 1942. He retired from Inco 5 years later in 1947.
Sheridan spent his early working life in Virginia City and Alder Oulch, Montana, where he worked as a mineral land surveyor and architect, finding a few nuggets while panning for gold
during his time off. After finishing his degree, Sheridan began work as a draftsman, then engineer, eventually being hired as chief engineer of the American Smelting and Refining Co.’s
five plants in Mexico. In 1919, finding the social climate unfavourable, he accepted the position of chief engineer for the International Nickel Company (Inco) in Copper Cliff, Ontario, and he
worked for the company for the next 25 years. Sheridan was in charge of all Inco plant design and construction in Canada and was also made chief engineer of the Port Colborne Refinery in
1923. With higher demand for stainless steel, the 1920s and 1930s saw massive growth in nickel production, and Sheridan oversaw major engineering projects during a time when production
increased by 375%. He is credited with developing a skip with curved sides and rounded corners that increased the tonnage of product that could be hoisted.
Sheridan was an avid film enthusiast and captured many aspects of Copper Cliff and Northern Ontario life including both the cultural landscape and industrial production. He also traveled extensively, always carrying his camera with him on such ventures. After his retirement, Sheridan moved to Santa Barbara, California, with his wife Ila.
He passed away there on February 11, 1969, at the age of 86.
Scope and Content:
The Leslie M. Sheridan fonds consists of three digitized 16mm film reels (Sheridan Reel 4 International Nickel, Sheridan Reel 14 INCO Copper Cliff, Reel 19-Copper Cliff & Biscotasing leisure activities)
that depict Copper Cliff, Sudbury, and other areas in Northern Ontario filmed by Sheridan. The films show the industrial landscape of Copper Cliff and Sudbury from the perspective of Inco management and hardrock miners during the first years of the 1930s, a period of increased industrial expansion despite the Great Depression. The films also give insight into life in Copper Cliff and surrounding Northern Ontario towns in the 1930s and 1940s and depict leisure activities including skiing, swimming, hockey, and the celebration of some national holidays. Northern Ontario communities depicted include Copper Cliff, Sudbury, Coniston, and Biscotasing. Industrial sites depicted include Frood Mine, the Copper Cliff Concentrator, the Coniston Smelter, the Port Colborne Nickel Refinery, and the Big
Eddy Dam and Power Plant at High Falls.