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No.: PR1979
TITLE: Ross family fonds
CREATOR: Ross family
DATE RANGE: 1911-[197-]
EXTENT: 0.04 m of textual records. -- 4 photographs. -- 1 postcard.
HISTORY/BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH: William MacKinnon Ross born September 15, 1881 in Valleyfield, Prince Edward Island (PEI). Raised in PEI, he attended Prince of Wales College and taught school for a few years before heading west in 1904 and finding work in copper mines in British Columbia. While in Greenwood, British Columbia, he met Helen Bertha McClure. She was born August 7, 1883 in Watford, Ontario and was in Greenwood visiting her sister. William and Helen were married June 27, 1911 in Fort Nelson, British Columbia. William continued to work in mines, and in 1912 Helen traveled to Ontario for the birth of their first child, Mary Vivian, on March 1, 1913. In early 1913, after hearing of a possible teaching opportunity at Flat Lake, Alberta, William moved to Flat Lake and was joined by his family that fall. William taught at Flat Lake School and later Beacon (originally Nova Bukovina) School and homesteaded near Chicken Hill, Alberta on the southeast section of Section 4, Township 60, Range 8, West of the 4th Meridian (4-60-8-W4). A son John Donald was born October 4, 1917 and twins William Alexander (Alex) and Catherine Anna were born June 26, 1919. The Ross family moved to Rife, Alberta in 1928. William and Helen farmed in Rife until retiring in 1961. They moved to Bonnyville, Alberta and their son Donald took over the farm. William died in November 1963 and Helen in September 1968. Vivian married Ray White in 1936 and they had four children: Edgar, Diane (Brown), Lynn and Ross. Donald married Olive Monro in 1949 and they had three children: Elsie (Cunningham), Lawrence and Allan. Alex married Julia Strumecki Damowhry in 1964. Catherine married Dannie Smith in 1940 and they had four children: Jean (Mottershead), Mack, Sidney and Richard.
SCOPE AND CONTENT: The fonds consists of the records of the Ross family, mainly Helen and William Ross, and includes correspondence, primarily to Helen Ross from William Ross; a Western Federation of Mines withdrawal card; records relating to William Ross’ teaching career; an agreement with Alfred Stroulger; a promotional pamphlet for the St. Paul area; an assessment notice; newspaper clippings; photographs of the Beacon school students, family and friends; and a postcard of a boat on the Columbia River. The fonds also includes transcriptions of the correspondence done by Catherine Smith and her comments about the correspondence.
GENERAL NOTE: Information for the biographical sketch is taken from So Soon Forgotten: A History of Glendon and Districts and Portrait of a Community: A History of Rife, Hoselaw and Moose Lake, which are available in the Provincial Archives of Alberta Reference Library, 971.233 G485 and 971.233 P838, from the 1901 Census of Canada and from the records. The homestead is represented according to the Alberta Township Survey (ATS) system.
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