Very good. Some of the letters written in pencil are a little faded.
History / Biographical
Ruth Alverda Wade was born born July 11, 1912 in Brandon, MB to James and Etta Alverda. She had two younger siblings: sister Gwen and brother Sherry. The Wade family resided at 1837 Princess Avenue, Brandon, MB. Ruth graduated from Brandon College with the Class of 1933.
During her time at Brandon College Ruth met Archie MacLachlan. Archibald James MacLachlan was born in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan in 1907. He had four brothers: Howard, Edgar, Bruce, Curly and Stirling. When Archie was quite young the MacLachlan family moved to Alberta. Archie came to Brandon c. 1930 to attend Brandon College. During the summers of his years at Brandon College Archie held pastoral charges in Alberta. The first two summers were spent in the Peace River Country and the second two in Etzikom in Southern Alberta. This is the period during which the letters in the fonds were written.
Ruth Wade married Archie MacLachlan on September 19, 1934 in Brandon, MB. Following the wedding the couple moved to Hamilton, ON. Archie graduated from McMaster University with his Bachelor of Divinity degree in 1937. During this period their daughter Joann Ruth was born. After his ordination as a Baptist Minister the family moved to North Bay where Archie was minister for four years. The next six years were spent in Vancouver as Archie worked as minister at Fairview Baptist Church in Vancouver. The couple's sons Archibald James and Lachlan Wade were also born during this period.
At the end of the Second World War Archie decided to go back to school. The family travelled to Brandon, where Ruth and the children remained for part of a year while Archie went ahead to Andover Newton to enroll and find a parish that would support him while he went to school. The family was reunited in Penacook, New Hampshire; they lived there for two years while Archie completed his Masters in Sacred Theology. After a brief additional period of study at Harvard University, the MacLachlan family returned to Canada, settling in Toronto while Archie finished his second Masters degree (Psychology) and held positions as interim minister and then assistant minister at York Minster Church. Following the two years in Toronto they moved to Winnipeg.
Eventually Archie left the church ministry and became Chaplain at the Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital. He also continuted to train students in Pastoral Education through the courses he had begun at the Divinity College of McMaster University. He remained at the Hospital until his retirement.
During their married life Ruth was kept busy raising the couple's children and with her work as a minister's wife, particularly her work in the community. She sat on a number of community boards, including positions as President of the Baptist Convention of Ontario and Quebec and a member of the Board of Governors for McMaster University's Divinity School.
Ruth MacLachlan died on October 29, 1983 in Missassauga, ON.
Archie married Kathleen Marie (Green) French (b. January 22, 1908, d. June 1, 1998) on June 20, 1987. Archie MacLachlan died in December 1997.
Records were in the possession of Ruth and Archie MacLachlan until their deaths. At that time the records were inherited by their daughter Joann. Joann MacLachlan donated the records to the McKee Archives on October 24, 2009 at a donation event held as part of Homecoming 2009.
Scope and Content
Fonds consists of approximately 197 letters written by Ruth and Archie to each other during the spring and summers of 1932, 1933 and 1934. The letters were written during the courtship of the couple and contain details not only on about their lives in Brandon and Alberta but also more personal information about their relationship, families and future plans. Because Ruth and Archie were students at Brandon College during this period the letters also often reflect on events and personalities related to the College, as well as their own personal studies.
Fonds also contains a scrapbook compiled by Ruth during her Brandon College years. It includes photographs, newspaper clippings, graduation cards, event programs, place cards and other ephemera. There are also a few miscellaneous documents - McMaster University examination papers, handwritten sheet music, postcards - that appear to have belonged to Archie. Fonds also contains a graduation photograph of Ruth.
Description by Christy Henry. History/Bio information taken from Joann MacLachlan's book Ruth and Archie: Brandon and Brandon College 1932-1934.
Ruth and Archie's daughter Joann edited the letters into a book entitled Ruth and Archie: Brandon and Brandon College 1932-1934. A copy of the book is located in the Rare Book collection of the John E. Robbins Library, Brandon University.
William Ridley Sheridan Wade collection (28-2007)
The letters are arranged in chronological order with all of Archie's letters to Ruth for a particular year grouped together, followed by Ruth's letters to Archie for that same year. For preservation purposes photographs in the scrapbook have been removed and placed in photograph storage, with their corresponding scrapbook page number noted on the back. Because of the fragile condition of the scrapbook a note has been made concerning the original location of many items that have become detached from their original location in the scrapbook. These items remain with the remnants of the scrapbook in one archival housing. Note that Ruth did not place items on every page so the numbering is not sequential for scrapbook items. Some items were loose at the back of the scrapbook and therefore have no corresponding page number.