Saskatchewan Archives : Sources on Doukhobors
by Nadine Charabin, Chief Archivist, Collections,
Saskatchewan Archives Board, Saskatoon, SK, 2006
Updated January 2016
Saskatchewan Archives is a rich source of Doukhobor documentary heritage. The provincial archives’ offices in Saskatoon and Regina house a variety of personal and organizational records, including photographs, sound recordings and oral history interviews, which pertain to the history of Doukhobors in Saskatchewan and in western Canada.
Some of the larger Doukhobor-related collections in the Archives’ holdings include:
- Koozma Tarasoff fonds Index online
- William P. Sherstobitoff fonds
- Peter G. Makaroff fonds
- John G. Bondoreff fonds
- Slavyanskoye Society (Blaine Lake) fonds
- Sam George Stupnikoff fonds Index online
- Peter John Serhienko fonds
- National Doukhobor Heritage Village Photograph Collection
- Ivan Feodorovich Sysoev fonds
- J.F.C. Wright Family fonds
- John Anton Popoff fonds
- Peter Bloudoff fonds (in-progress)
For more information about Saskatchewan Archives sources related to Doukhobor history, see Nadine Small, “Centennials: Time for a New Look at the Spirit Wrestlers,” Canadian Ethnic Studies, vol. XXVII, No. 3, 1995, pp. 270-280 (special Issue: From Russia with Love: The Doukhobors, guest editor: Koozma J. Tarasoff) or contact Saskatchewan Archives Reference Services at either the Saskatoon or Regina location by phoning 306-933-5832 (Saskatoon) or 306-787-4068 (Regina); or using our online Contact Form: http://www.saskarchives.com/contact-us-by-email Website: Saskatchewan Archives : http://www.saskarchives.com.
Koozma Tarasoff fonds (F 370) [Also see: Tarasoff Papers]
1882-2004, 64.06 m textual records, plus sound recordings, maps, photographs, and other media types
Index : http://sain.scaa.sk.ca/collections/index.php/koozma-j-tarasoff-fonds
The fonds consists of records created, accumulated and used by Koozma Tarasoff resulting from his personal life; his academic education; his baseball activities in the 1950s; his activities within Doukhobor communities in Saskatchewan and British Columbia and his extensive Doukhobor-related research; his work as an ethnologist for the Saskatchewan and federal governments; his involvement in pacifist organizations; and his ongoing research in socio-ethnological fields.
The types of records included are correspondence; research materials; publications; published and unpublished manuscripts; newspaper clippings; theses; essays; recorded oral history interviews; sound recordings of conference proceedings, festivals, Doukhobor musical performances; photographs; personal diaries; reports; maps; questionnaires; computer data printouts; reference manuals; subject files; and interview transcripts.
An extensive personal library is included in the fonds, together with an index to these holdings.
The fonds pertains to the period 1882 to 2004 and has been divided into six series: Correspondence; Doukhobors; Personal; Professional; Library; and Research and Writings. Due to the multi-faceted and long-term nature of Tarasoff’s work in the ethnological and pacifist fields, there is much overlap found in material between series.
To consult the records visit or contact the Saskatoon and Regina offices. Some access restrictions apply.
William P. Sherstobitoff fonds (S-A 594)
1953-1979, 1.25 m
Correspondence, subject files and publications dealing with Doukhobor activities and issues including peace demonstrations, Doukhobor societies in Saskatchewan and British Columbia, concerts and conferences, Sons of Freedom and the proposed uranium refinery to be built near Warman. Mr. Sherstobitoff lived in Saskatoon.
Peter G. Makaroff fonds (S-A 28)
1919-1969, 2.7 m
P.G. Makaroff was a Saskatoon lawyer, a prominent Doukhobor and a member of the CCF Party. His fonds includes: correspondence files are concerning Doukhobor organizations and problems, politics, peace groups and some personal correspondence; publications about many organizations and subjects in which Mr. Makaroff was interested.
Some access restrictions apply.
John G. Bondoreff fonds (S-A 292)
1907-1979, 2.05 m
John G. Bondoreff served as secretary of the Central Executive Committee of the society of Named Doukhobors of Canada (1928-1934), served as a registrar of births, marriages and deaths on behalf of the Named Doukhobors, and was a member of a committee during the Second World War which negotiated with the national War Services Board for alternate service rights for Doukhobors. Although he lived in various Doukhobor communities in Saskatchewan and British Columbia, he ultimately settled in the Blaine Lake area. His fonds includes correspondence and documents of and about the Named Doukhobor Society, 1928-1939; registers of births, marriages and deaths of the Named Doukhobors, 1929-1943; reminiscences, autobiography, personal correspondence and literary works of John G. Bondoreff; publications (including Iskra, 1948-1979); photographs and negatives relating to Doukhobors.
Some access restrictions apply.
Slavyanskoye Society (Blaine Lake) fonds (S-A 419)
1926-1931, 1 cm
The fonds includes minutes, membership lists, correspondence and financial records of the Slavyanskoye Society (Obshchestvo) in Blaine Lake, relating to its varied activities as a rural Doukhobor organization, including the operation of its hall and the maintenance of its cemetery.
Sam George Stupnikoff fonds (S-A 420)
1913-1981, 6 cm
Index : http://sain.scaa.sk.ca/collections/index.php/sam-george-stupnikoff-fonds
The fonds includes an article on the history of the Blaine Lake district to 1911; family photographs; miscellaneous publications relating to community and Doukhobor activities; the Book of Life of Doukhobors (translated), Blaine Lake, 1912-1962; programme of the official opening of the Petrofka Bridge, September 26, 1962.
Peter John Serhienko fonds (S-A 613)
1905-1984, 2.5 m
Peter John Serhienko was born in the Blaine Lake and raised on his family’s farm in the district, and was well known for his work in the Doukhobor community. His fonds includes correspondence, photographs, publications and maps pertaining to fishing and outdoor recreation in Saskatchewan, to Doukhobors in Saskatchewan, and to Serhienko's business career, family life, and family history. Also included are newspaper articles on fishing in Saskatchewan which were prepared by Serhienko which appeared in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix.
National Doukhobor Heritage Village Photograph Collection
(Call Numbers S-B 9490 to S-B 9718)
Over two hundred images which document the lives and experiences of Saskatchewan Doukhobors from their pre-emigration days in Russia in the later 1880s up to the mid 1980s.
Ivan Feodorovich Sysoev fonds (S-A 536)
1975, 2.5 cm
The fonds includes Stikhotvorenia I. F. Sysoeva (The Songs of I. F. Sysoev), comprising poems and songs written while Sysoev resided in the Doukhobor village of Uspennie, Saskatchewan, 1909-1910, during the migration of the Doukhobors to British Columbia, and while residing in the village of Plodorodnoe, British Columbia (1911-1919) and in Kylemore, Saskatchewan (1919-1938), and later in various parts of the interior of British Columbia. Published in 1975 by N. N. Kalmakoff, Richmond, British Columbia.
J.F.C. Wright Family fonds (S-A 568)
1876-1985, 9.2 m
J.F.C. Wright is best known in Doukhobor circles as the governor Award-winning author of Slava Bohu, a history of the Doukhobors published in 1940. The J.F.C. Wright Family fonds includes correspondence, manuscripts, published and unpublished writings, photographs, sound recordings, and moving images; documentary materials and publications relating to various interests of family members including Doukhobor history, environmental concerns, and the farm and peace movements. The fonds are composed of the papers of James Fredrick Church Wright and his wife Diana, of rural Saskatoon, as well as their sons, Dane Wright and George Gordon-Lennox.
Some access restrictions apply.
John Anton Popoff fonds (S-A 562)
1924-1984, 4 cm
The fonds includes historical writings of John Anton Popoff of Yorkton, Saskatchewan, including "Abbreviated History of the Canadian Doukhobors and the Role in it of the Anton Popoff Family," his reminiscences regarding CCF activities in Yorkton and district, and the recollections of Vasili V. Zeibin and Alexei M. Chernoff, 1964, edited and published by Popoff. The fonds also includes Yorkton International Film Festival Committee programmes and record of proceedings, 1954-1960, and miscellaneous records relating to Popoff’s career as a schoolteacher and to his involvement in Doukhobor activities.
Peter Bloudoff fonds
In-progress January 2016, according to Jeremy Mohr, Manager, Records Processing Unit.
Peter Bloudoff arrived in Canada in 1899, part of the first contingent of Doukhobors to reach Canada from Russia. From this time to 1946, the year of his death, he resided in Saskatchewan, near the town of Arran, first in the Doukhobor village of Kamenka, and when the communal village system ended, he took out a homestead on the former village site. In addition to maintaining his farm, he worked as a salesman, a road contractor for the Dept of Highways, and as Reeve for RM of St. Phillips. He had many hobbies, but the most important was photography. His surviving photographs (ca 1910-25) document various aspects of Doukhobor life in this region including families, children, work, play, school, clothing, etc.
The records consist of 55 glass negatives, digital format of negatives (created by donor), proof prints, various related family print photographs, additional photographs created by donor, as well as his audio and video interviews with William Bloudoff (Peter Bloudoff’s nephew) and Fred Bloudoff (son of Peter), detailed description of each image, and related documentation.