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Wood's Christian Home fonds

1873-2004, predominant 1915-1974

Physical Description:
11 m of textual records. -- 2362 photographs

In 1915 Reverend George Wood, 1878-1928, a Presbyterian minister in Innisfail, Alberta agreed to care for the motherless children of a soldier going overseas. This was the beginning of Wood's Christian Home, originally an orphanage, and presently a facility for emotionally disturbed children. He married Annie Jarvie in 1916, and together the Woods provided a loving environment for orphaned and neglected children. In 1918, due to space shortages, the Woods moved to Olds, Alberta where 30 acres of land had been obtained. In 1926 another move was made to find adequate space for the growing number of children. The 32 children were moved to the large Hextall mansion in Bowness, Alberta. When Mr. Wood died in 1928, Mrs. Wood continued to run the home until her death in 1939. During the depression approximately 100 children were housed and educated at Wood's. The numbers of children cared for dropped significantly by the 1960s due to duplication of services by other agencies. The home closed in 1969 to re-evaluate its role in child welfare, but reopened in 1970 to care for emotionally disturbed adolescents, under the auspices of the provincial Department of Health. Its name is now Wood's Homes. For further information see The Evolution of Woods' Christian Homes / David Seymour Bazeley. -- MEd thesis, University of Alberta, 1988; and One Hundred Stories for One Hundred Years / Clem Martini. -- Edmonton : Brush, 2013.

Scope and Content:
The fonds consists of board minutes and annual reports; records relating to fundraising campaigns; admissions records and personal files of children; attendance registers, yearbooks, etc. for the school run by the Home; records of extra-curricular activities of the children; financial records and tax returns; architectural plans and other records re the construction and maintenance of buildings; personal papers of the Wood family; and extensive photographs of the children, staff and activities of the Home.

Source of Acquisition:
Gifts of Wood's Christian Home Alumni, 1974, Eileen Thornton, 1993, Alex Crocket, 2004, Rondo Elizabeth Wood, 2004, and Wood's Homes Foundation, 2008.

The material is in English.

Permission must be obtained from Wood's Homes to view the personal files and admissions records of former residents.

Finding Aids:
Inventory available. Please consult before requesting material.

View finding aid / scanned documents:

Call Numbers:
(M=manuscript; N&P=photos; R=sound recordings; S=slides; F=films)
M-2151, M-2152, PA-1712, PB-744, PD-126, NA-3010

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