Fonds 139 Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie

fonds-139

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1942-1987. — 70 cm of textual records, 350 photographs.


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Agency History

The Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie was chartered in 1942 under president Tommy Blair. The object of the club was “to promote and direct fellowship among young men of good character” in order to educate and encourage them regarding ethical business practices, the welfare of their community, tolerance and acceptance of all peoples, and service work in their community. The motto of the club was “Serving the Community’s Greatest Need.”

The original club was made up mostly of men in their late 30s and 40s, but as the local boys returned from the war, they were quickly taken into the club. During the war years they formed a War Charities Trust and raised money for the Milk for Britain Fund, Aid for Russia, and Greek and Chinese Relief.

Meetings and Conventions formed the base of the Kinsmen year. Regular supper meetings were held every two weeks, with Conventions in Spring and Fall, Kin Week in February, and Installation Night in June, when new executives were installed and yearly awards given out.

The first large community project was started in 1946—raising $24,000 for a swimming pool which was then turned over to the town. The next project was raising $75,000 for a new arena, built in 1948. Over the years the Kinsmen worked on and raised money for many community recreational facilities: Bear Creek Park and its facilities, Bear Creek Swimming Pool, and the Grande Prairie Recreation Complex, as well as organizing the senior hockey club and sponsoring minor hockey. In 1980 they constructed the Kinsmen East Hillside Community Centre.

While the club put much effort into large recreational projects, it was not their only focus. Many organizations benefitted from time, goods and money donated by Kinsmen: the hospital, the fire department, municipal government, Sea Cadets, the City’s Marching Band, the Victorian Order of Nurses, Alberta Special Games for Handicapped Children, Cystic Fibrosis and Swan Industries. The Kinsmen raised money through personal pledges, raffles, radio auctions, carnivals, bingos, and cultivating a Christmas Tree farm.
The Grande Prairie Kinsmen, in Zone 1 District 4 of the Association of Kinsmen Clubs of Canada, was active throughout the Peace Region, chartering the Peace River Kinsmen in 1944, the Dawson Creek Kinsmen in 1950, the Spirit River Kinsmen in 1952, the Valleyview Kinsmen in 1961, and the Beaverlodge Kinsmen in 1974. Two provincial governors were elected from Grande Prairie—Keith Adams in 1960 and Gerry Fischer in 1965, and the club hosted the Alberta Convention in 1960, 1966, 1975 and 1982.

Custodial History

Records were collected by the Grande Prairie Kinsmen Club and donated to the Grande Prairie Regional Archives by Roy Borstad in 2001, and accruals were donated by Pat Kirton in 2011 and by Pat Olson in 2012.

Scope and Content

The fonds consists of minutes, financial and membership records, organizational and activity files, Milk for Britain promotional tool-kit from World War II, a large collection of photographs, news clippings, scrapbook, and material from associated national and fraternal organizations.

Table of Contents

Series 139.01Minutes
Series 139.02Financial Records
Series 139.03Membership
Series 139.04Organizational Files
Series 139.05Activity Files
Series 139.06Photographs
Series 139.07News Clippings and Posters
Series 139.08Associated Organizations
Series 139.09Kinsmen Scrapbook
Series 139.01Minutes. — 1942-1987. — 21 cm of textual records.

The charter meeting of the Grande Prairie Kinsmen Club was held on July 2, 1942 , and Vic Lloyd, District Governor, presented the charter to twenty-six members. By that time, the group had already been active for some time, with Tommy Blair as president and Buster Murphy as secretary, and had raised more than $1500 for the Milk for Britain fund, a project promoted by the Association of Kinsmen. The minutes were compiled into a wooden binder by Deane Toews on the 25th Anniversary of the Grande Prairie Kinsmen Club in 1967, and later updated to 1975. Later minutes were kept in rough form in a coil notebook.

The series consists of the minutes of the Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie from 1942 to 1975, and a notebook of rough minutes from 1985 to 1987. Minutes include lists of members, lists of accounts, details of correspondence, summaries of discussions, descriptions of club projects, and motions carried by the club members.

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Series 139.02Financial Records. — 1942-1987. — 6 cm of textual records.

The earliest financial records from the Kinsmen were kept, before the club was chartered, in the back of an old hospital ledger when they were raising funds for the Milk for Britain campaign. Milk Bottle Drives were conducted in stores and post offices, Concerts were presented, Radio Dances were held in schools and community halls, and donations were received from groups and individuals all across the Peace River Country: Canadian Red Cross, Junior Red Cross, Women’s Institutes, Girls Clubs, Elks, I.O.D.E., Stagettes, Sports Clubs, Community Clubs, Church Groups, Schools, and Students’ Unions. This was indicative of the long arm of the Kinsmen in the Peace Country, and the resulting chartering of clubs across the Peace.

The series consists of the first financial ledger detailing the Milk for Britain Fund drive, ledgers of accounts from the club’s formation in July 1942 to December 1944, an annual report for 1944, cheque stubs for 1948-49, annual reports for 1967 and 1968, financial files for 1969-70 and 1974-75, accounts book for 1979-1980, and miscellaneous financial records for 1981-1987.

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Series 139.03Membership. — 1950-1988. — 7 cm of textual records.

The series consists of membership rosters, lists of committee and executive members, member responsibilities, and social events to assist Kinsmen in getting to know one another. It includes newsletters printed by the Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie to communicate with its members. A certificate identifies Rudy Cepela as a Life Member.

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Series 139.04Organizational Files. — 1942-1987. — 6 cm of textual records.

The series consists of files containing information pertinent to the operations of the Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie: By-laws, Correspondence, Insurance and Policies and Procedures.

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Series 139.05Activity Files. — 1942-1987. — 18 cm of textual records.

The series consists of files relating to projects, events and fundraising which the Kinsmen undertook in their aim to serve the greatest needs in the community. Some of these include the Milk for Britain Campaign, the 1960 and 1982 conventions, Blood Donor clinics in cooperation with the Canadian Red Cross during the 1970s, Holiday lotteries and Car Awards, bingos and casinos, the Cystic Fibrosis Radiothon, the Christmas Tree Farm and the construction of the Kin Centre. There are also smaller, miscellaneous projects.

SubSeries 139.05.01Milk for Britain. — 1942-1943. — 1 cm of textual records.

“Kinsmanship—the fellowship and the obligation, implied, of service to others—was founded in the organization of Kinsmen in 1920, by veterans of the War of 1914-1918…. With the outbreak of another Great War in 1939, the interest and work of these men—still of a fighting age—logically turned again to War Service as the dominant objective of their kinsmanship. One of the first projects was Milk for Britain, under which Kinsmen Clubs promised British parents 1,500,000 quarts of milk in 1942.

The sub-series consists of a Milk-for-Britain Portfolio sent by the Kinsmen National War Service Committee as a “tool-kit for club presidents and war service chairmen for the management and promotion of National Kin War Services”. It contains an informational booklet, pamphlets, posters, paper artefacts such as tags and tickets, suggestions for fund-raising, certificates, bulletins, and testimonials.

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Series 139.06Photographs. — 1948-1982. — 353 photographs.

The yearly cycle of the Kinsmen Club is reflected in its photograph collection. The Kin year started in September with regular supper meetings held every two weeks, interrupted by Fall Conference (which was men only) and Spring Convention for Kinsmen, Kinettes and Kin Wives from the entire district. In addition, there was Kin Week in February, which welcomed new members and included Past Presidents Night and Family Day, and the Installation Night in June when new executives were installed and awards such as Life Membership and Kinsmen of the Year given out.

The series consists of photographs of regular membership meetings, conventions, Installation Night awards dinners and activities during Kin Week. There are two large group photographs of past presidents of the Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie taken in 1960 and 1980 and a photograph of the members in 1968-69.

SubSeries 139.06.01Membership. — 1960-1980. — 88 photographs.

The series consists of photographs of members used for the 1961 Slave Day fundraiser, regular supper meetings at local restaurants such as Heidi’s Restaurant; awards and new executives at Installation Night in June; special events such as the K-40 banquet in 1975; and initiation of new members. An accrual in 2012 includes a photograph of the members in 1968-69.

 
Slave Day, 1961
40 photographs; b & w; 1.5 x 2
Mug Shots of the members of the Kinsmen Club in 1961, used for Slave Day advertising in the newspaper.
Location: 0139.06.01.01
Kinsmen Club Supper Meeting, 1975 c.
5 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
A supper meeting at Heidi’s Restaurant.
Location: 0139.06.01.02
Installation Night–Executives, 1965-1971
8 photographs; b & w; 5 x 10 in.
Photographs of new executives taken on Installation Night in June, left to right: Radbourne, Wright, Bickell, Saga, Campbell, Barr, Wiebe, Phillips, and Rodseth.
Location: 0139.06.01.03
Life Membership Awards, 1965-1971
3 photographs; b & w; 3 x 3
Life Memberships were awarded to Kinsmen who had made significant contributions to the club.
Location: 0139.06.01.04
Kinsmen of the Year Awards, 1965-1971
5 photographs; b & w;
Each June, the member who had contributed most to the club that year received the “Kinsmen of the Year” award.
Location: 0139.06.01.05
Installation Night, 1977
7 photographs; colour; 3 x 4
1977 Installation Night celebration showing executive, awards, dinner and dancing.
Location: 0139.06.01.06
Installation Night, 1978
3 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
1978 Installation Night celebration showing executive, awards and dinner in the basement of the Golden Star Restaurant.
Location: 0139.06.01.07
Miscellaneous, [1960-1980]
5 photographs; colour; b & w;
Unidentified photographs of Kinsmen membership events.
Location: 0139.06.01.08
Welcome to New Members, 1974
4 photographs; colour; 3 x 3
Presentations of membership certificates to new members.
Location: 0139.06.01.09
K-40 Banquet, 1975
7 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
Photographs of a K-40 banquet removed from poster. Photocopy of the poster accompnies the series.
Location: 0139.06.01.10
Membership 1968-1969, 1968-1969
1 photograph; b & w; 7 x 9
The photograph shows thumb nail individual head shots of the men who were members of the Kinsmen in 1968-1969 in Grande Prairie.
Location: 0139.06.01.11
SubSeries 139.06.02Conventions. — 1966-1981. — 152 photographs.

The series consists of two slides of the Arabian costumes and one photograph of the train trip to Dawson Creek for the 1966 convention; one of the wooden train engine which was the Kinsmen float for convention parades; and a series of photographs of the 1975 convention, Timber Takin Daze, held at the Grande Prairie Regional College. These show the Kinsmen parade down Richmond Avenue, the campaign for election of District Governor and other convention events. The series includes a set of slides on Grande Prairie and area, most likely part of a bid package for the 1982 convention.

 
1966 Convention, 1966
3 2 slides; 1 photograph; colour; b & w;
The theme of the 1966 convention was “Arabian Nights under Northern Lights.” A train was chartered to take the Kinsmen, Kinettes and Kin Wives to Dawson Creek for a Bar-b-que.
Location: 0139.06.02.01
Grande Prairie Kinsmen Parade Entry, 1974
2 photograph; slide; b & w; colour; 5 x 7; 35 mm
Wooden Train which the Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie used as their float in Kinsmen and community parades.
Location: 0139.06.02.02
Timber Takin’ Daze, 1975
13 photographs; colour; 3 x 3
Convention at the Grande Prairie Regional
Location: 0139.06.02.03
Kinsmen Convention Parade, 1975
25 photographs; b & w; 3 x 3
Kinsmen Parade down Richmond Avenue during the 1975 convention.
Location: 0139.06.02.04
Convention Presentation, Canfor Lumber, 1981
10 slides; colour; 35 mm
“Timber Takin’ II” was the theme of the 1982 Convention for which this promotional package of slides was prepared. Views are of operations at the Canfor Lumber Mill.
Location: 0139.06.02.05
Convention Presentation, City of Grande Prairie, 1981
39 slides; colour; 35 mm
“Timber Takin’ II” was the theme of the 1982 Convention for which this promotional package of the City of Grande Prairie was prepared. Views include aerials, buildings, parks and the airport.
Location: 0139.06.02.06
Convention Presentation, Nature and Environment, 1981
11 slides; colour; 35 mm
“Timber Takin’ II” was the theme of the 1982 Convention for which this promotional package of slides was prepared.
Location: 0139.06.02.07
Timber Takin’ II, 1982
19 photographs; b & w; 3 x 5
Photographs of Timber Takin’ II removed from a Conference Poster.
Location: 0139.06.02.08
Past Presidents, Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie, 1960
1 photograph; b & w; 8 x 10
Past President Night, February 19, 1960. Back row L to R: Merv Lewis ’50, Jack Howarth ’49, Peter Eager ’56, Harvey Merryfield ’57, Max Henning ’58, George O’Brien ’45, Bob Davies ’43, Gerry Card ’51, Bob Campbell ’53. Front Row: Al Scholton ’49, Bob Field ’52, Fred Stevenson ’55, Bill Bessent ’59, Griff James ’48, Harold Ayre ’60, Sid Ross ’44, Gordon Cummings ’45, Roy Wright ’46, Art Whitlock ’54.
Location: 0139.06.03.01
Kin Week, 1970s
7 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
Welcoming new Kinsmen into the club during Kin Week in the 1970s.
Location: 0139.06.03.04
Past Presidents, Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie, 1982
1 photograph; colour; 8 x 10
Past presidents of the Kinsmen Club during Kin Week, 1982.
Location: 0139.06.03.05
SubSeries 139.06.03Kin Week. — 1960-[1980]. — 57 photographs.

The series consists of group photographs of Past Presidents in 1960 and 1982; a series of photographs from Kin Week 1969; of new Kinsmen being welcomed into the club, and of family events during Kin Week.

 
Past Presidents’ Night, Kin Week, 1960
14 photographs; b & w; 5 x 7
Dinner, entertainment and guests at Past President’s Night on February 19, 1960, during Kin Week, the year of the 40th Anniversary.
Location: 0139.06.03.02
Past Presidents Night, 1960
14 photographs; b & w; 5 x 7
Series of photographs of the 1960-1961 executive and the banquet celebrating Past Presidents’ Night on February 19, 1960.
Location: 0139.06.03.02-15
Kin Week, 1969
34 photographs; b & w; 3 x 3
Activities during Kin Week included the Past Presidents’ Banquet, welcoming New Kin and Family Day.
Location: 0139.06.03.03
SubSeries 139.06.04Kin Activities. — 1948-1982. — 56 photographs.

The series consists of photographs showing Kin major projects such as the Memorial Arena, the Bear Creek Pool, Bear Creek Park development, the RecPlex Arena and Pool, and building the Kin Centre. There are also photographs of activities such as playing on the Kinsmen Hockey Team, fundraising events and presentations; the Annual Car Award, and special events such as the Father, Son, Daughter Banquet in 1975 and the Kinettes and Kinsmen cooking for community breakfasts and Bar-b-ques. An accrual in 2012 includes 2 photos of the Kinsmen Radio Auction.

 
Major Kinsmen Projects, 1948-1972
15 photographs; colour; b & w; 3 x 3
Major projects of the Kinsmen Club: the Memorial Arena in 1948, Bear Creek Pool in 1961, Bear Creek Miniature Golf 1965, Bear Creek Tennis Courts 1966, Bear Creek Playground 1967, Recplex Arena and Pool 1972.
Location: 0139.06.04.01
Kinsmen Hockey Tournament, 1965
8 photographs; b & w; 3 x 5
The Kinsmen traveled to Edmonton to compete in the Kinsmen Hockey Tournament.
Location: 0139.06.04.02
Kinsmen Donations, [1960-1980]
4 photographs; ;
Unidentified Kinsmen and Kinettes presenting donations to community groups.
Location: 0139.06.04.03
Kinsmen Annual Car Award, [1965-1975]
3 photographs; ;
Each year, the Kinsmen Club awarded a new car to the winner of their car lottery.
Location: 0139.06.04.04
Community Breakfasts and Bar-b-ques, 1970s
10 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
The Kinsmen and Kinettes Clubs often catered for community breakfasts and bar-b-ques as a source of fundraising.
Location: 0139.06.04.05
Building the Kin Centre, 1979-[1982]
9 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
In 1978-79 the Kinsmen started to construct the Kinsmen Hillside Community Centre.
Location: 0139.06.04.06
Father, Daughter, Son Banquet, 1975
; ;
A Kinsmen family event in 1975.
Location: 0139.06.04.07
Father, Daughter, Son Banquet, 1975
5 photographs; colour; 3 x 5
A Kinsmen family event in 1975.
Location: 0139.06.04.07
Kinsmen Radio Auction, 1970 c.
1 photograph; b & w; 8 x 10
Kismen Radio Auction in action.showing members manning the phones. Rudy Cepela is second from the right and Merv Reynolds on far left.
Location: 0139.06.04.08
Kinsmen Radio Auction, 1970 c.
1 photograph; b & w; 6 x 10
Kismen Radio Auction in action.showing three members showing off a table full of auction items. L-R Jim Johnson, Rudy Cepela, Dave Barr
Location: 0139.06.04.09
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Series 139.07News Clippings and Posters. — 1957-1982. — 2 cm of textual records.

The series consists of newsclippings and posters containing photographs and news clippings of the activities of the Kinsmen Club of Grande Prairie. Subjects include executives as they are sworn in; the 1960, 1966, 1975 and 1982 conventions; the Edson Kin trek over the Edson Trail and the train chartered to Dawson Creek for a BBQ during the 1966 convention; Kinsmen of the Year awards; projects such as the Christmas Tree Drive, Grande Prairie Arena construction and the 1969 fire, Bear Creek Pool Construction, Red Cross work, sports events such as the 1969 Curl-O-Rama, Radio Auctions and Community Breakfasts, Bingos and Fashion Shows; and social events which included the entire family.

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Series 139.08Associated Organizations. — 1943-1986. — 10 cm of textual records.

The series consists of publications and information about associated organizations: the National Association of Kinsmen Clubs, the District Four Association, and the Kinettes. Information and communications regarding the K-40 Club for older Kinsmen is found throughout the records.

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Series 139.09Kinsmen Scrapbook. — 1959-1960. — 3 cm of textual records. — 12 photographs.

The series consists of a scrapbook created by Roy Borstad, a member of the Kinsmen club in Grande Prairie. The scrapbook contains 12 photographs, various news clippings of events the Kinsmen were involved in, two bulletins, a ticket book with ribbons from the Grande Prairie convention, and a history booklet for District 4.

 
Kinsmen Installation Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
A Kinsmen banquet, the man in the photo is giving a speech and two people are waitng to be presented. 3 people are seated.
Location: 0139.09.01
Kinsmen Installation Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
A Kinsmen banquet, the man in the photo is giving a speech and two more people are waitng to be presented. 3 people are seated.
Location: 0139.09.02
Kinsmen Installation Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
A Kinsmen banquet, the man in the photo is giving a speech and two more people are waitng to be presented. 2 people are seated.
Location: 0139.09.03
Speech at Kinsmen Installation Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
A Kinsmen banquet, the man in the photo is giving a speech and there are three people seated.
Location: 0139.09.04
Receiving Pins, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x13
A Kinsmen banquet and 2 people are receiving pins.
Location: 0139.09.05
Kinsman Installation Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
3 people seated at the Kinsmen Installation Banquet, the background shows the Kinsman banner.
Location: 0139.09.06
2 Ladies at the Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
2 ladies sitting at the Kinsmen banquet.
Location: 0139.09.07
4 people socializing at the Kinsmen Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
4 people socializing at the Kinmsen Banquet.
Location: 0139.09.08
4 Ladies at the Kinsmen Banquet, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 13
4 ladies sitting at the Knsmen banquet.
Location: 0139.09.09
12 Foot Davis, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 9 x 9
A photo of a 12″ Davis staue that the kinsmen used in the parade.
Location: 0139.09.11
7 Kinsmen in Cowboy Hats, 1959-1960
1 photo; b & w; 12 x 15
7 men in cowboy hat holding a banner who attended a conevntion in Dawson Creek.
Location: 0139.09.12
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