Cornelius Regehr fonds, 1894, 1979-1993, 3 cm.
Cornelius Regehr was born 27 September 1911 in Terek, Russia, the son of Peter H. and Anna (Reimer) Regehr. The family immigrated to Canada in 1925 and settled in Coaldale, Alberta. Cornelius married Katharina Klassen in 1940 and, sortly therafter the couple moved to Yarrow, British Columbia where Cornelius worked in various jobs. Katharina died in 2002. Cornelius then married Elizabeth Wipf who died in 2008. Cornelius died 26 December 2010.
Numerous relatives remained in the Soviet Union and, for many years, those living in Canada had only very limited contact with those still living in the Soviet Union. That increased dramatically after 1979 when it became possible for family members to communicate more freely with relatives in Canada. Many eventually left the Soviet Union and established new homes in Germany.
Scope and Content
The fonds consists of three distinct and very different collections of letters.
Folder 1 contains a carbon copy of a five page letter written by Liese and Johannes Janzen, dated 23 November 1952 to Cornelius Regehr’s parents, Peter H. and Anna (Reimer) Regehr. This letter containes detailed genealogical information pertaining to both the Janzen and Regehr families.
Folder 2 contains three letters, written 6, 9 and 15 March 1894. They were written by Wilhelm [Janzen] to his wife Maria while he was on a preaching and evangelization trip. In the letters, written from Gnadenthal, Bachmut and Alexanderfeld, all in the Soviet Union, the writer refers to evanglistic services, house visitations and conversations with local Mennonite residents. It is not evident how Cornelius Regehr received these letters.
Folder 3 contains 31 letters or notes written to Cornelius and Katharina Regehr by relatives living in the Soviet Union but then emigrating to Germany. The letters descibe in some detail conditions in the Soviet Union, the complexities and challenges of the migration from the Soviet Union to Germany, and conditions after they settled in Germany.
Source of Aquisition
Donated by Marge Friesen, daughter of Cornelius and Katharina Regehr.