Katharine Peters collection, 39 photographs, 151 letters from relatives in the Soviet Union.
Katharine Peters, was born in 1933, the daughter of David Peter Goerzen and Susanna (Wiens) Goerzen. Her parents had emigrated from the Soviet Union in 1924. They stayed with the Joe Burkholder family of Tofield, Alberta, until the spring of 1925 when they moved to a farm at Namaka. From there they moved to a farm west of Acme and east of Crossfield in 1927. Katharine grew up there and married Ed Peters.
In 1986 Katharine Peters’ mother, Susanna (Wiens) Goerzen gave her letters the family had received from relatives still living in the Soviet Union. The letters were all written in the cursive Gothic script, on fragile paper. Katharine undertook the very large task of first transcribing and then translating the latters. She donated the original letters and typewritten copies of the transcriptions and of the translations of the letters to the archives of the Mennonite Historical Society of Alberta in 2017.
Kathy Peters also received from her mother two family photograph albums, containing 39 photographs taken in Russia and brought to Canada by Katharine Peters’ parents in 1924.
Scope and Content
The collection consists of four sets of letters received by the family of David Peter Goerzen and Susanna (Wiens) Goerzen from relatives in the Soviet Union, 39 photographs, and genealogical information documenting the relationships of the letter writers living in the Soviet Union to the Goerzen family in Canada.
Source of Acquisition
Gift by Katharine Peters
61 letters, written between 1924-1933, by Maria Dueckman Goerzen,
to the family of her son, David Peter Goerzen, and Susanna (Wiens) Goerzen.
29 letters, written between 1924 and 1936, by Anna Fast, sister of David Peter Goerzen and sister-in-law Susanna( Wiens) Goerzen.
33 letters, written between 1924 and 1933, by David Peter Goerzen’s brothers, Heinrich and Peter and his sister Maria.
28 letters, written betweem 1924 and 1933, by members of the Johann Johann Wiens and Susanna (Dyck) Wiens family, to their daughters, Anna (Gerhard) Duerksen and Susanna (David) Goerzen who were living in Canada.
39 photographs taken in the Soviet Union before 1924 and brought to Canada by the Goerzen family.
Detailed genealogical notes documenting the relationships of the letter writers in the Soviet Union to their relatives in Canada.