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CNE History

Two young girls at the fair with cotton candy.

The CNE has always been proud of its history and the wealth of memories that have been created here since its incorporation in 1879.

The CNEA Archives, established in 1964, works hard to acquire and preserve the historical memories of the organization and make them available to the public through their online database. The collection is mainly comprised of photographs (negatives/prints/slides) spanning almost the entire history of the CNE. Smaller print material, ephemera, artifacts, and sound and moving images collections help round out the archival collection. At this time the CNEA Archives are closed to the public. Research and reference requests can be directed to Shayda Spakowski.

Check out our curated Heritage Website for a photo retrospective of around 100 years of the CNE.

Search Our Database

The CNEA Archival Collection is arranged and described according to the Rules of Archival Description at the fonds (collection) level and subdivided into series, sub-series, files, and items as needed. To search our database, you can click on the link below and use a simple keyword search or by using the menu links in the header you can “browse collections” or click “advanced search” where you will be able to refine your search parameters. Make use of the cart feature to save and make requests for images.

Personal/Educational Use

Public Domain images contained in the CNEA Archives’ physical and digital repository may be reproduced in print or electronic form for personal use, educational use, and research.

Please ensure any Public Domain image used includes the following credit line: Courtesy of Canadian National Exhibition Association Archives.

Those copies (photographic, moving images, photocopies, etc.) which are not in the Public Domain are made for research and private study purposes.

Information about any request for copies made for research and private study may be made available to the copyright owner or his/her authorized representative.

Commercial/Marketing Use

Use of CNEA Archival holdings for Commercial or Marketing endeavors must receive permission from the CNEA Archives prior to publication regardless if the item is in the Public Domain or not. There is also an associated fee for their use, for more details please contact Shayda Spakowski.

User Responsibility

Any use of reproductions for a purpose other than research or private study may require the authorization of the copyright owner of the work in question. 

Responsibility regarding questions of copyright that may arise in the use of reproduction is assumed by the recipient.

Upon request, the staff of the Archives will endeavor to provide recipients with the copyright status of the material in its holdings as well as the name of the person, company or organization holding the copyright, when this information is known.


Need more information? Please reach out and we will love to guide you.