Classification scheme: 
Hist. Mss. 1.215

Title: Una Cressman fonds

Dates of creation: [1860?]-1988

Physical description: 25 cm of textual records and photo albums, including

Biographical sketch: Una Cressman was born 25 July 1905 to Isaiah and Lena Shirk Cressman. She grew up on a farm between Berlin (now Kitchener) and Breslau in a family of 15 children. The family was active in First Mennonite Church in Kitchener.

Una studied at Goshen College's high school program, and went on to nurse's training at the Mennonite nurses' training program at La Junta, Colorado.

She went on to serve as a missionary in Argentina (1940-1946, 1948-1952, 1954-1959), part of this time in the interior jungle. After returning to Ontario, Una continued to serve as a nurse until retirement in 1970. She eventually moved to the Fairview Mennonite Home, where she died 17 December 1996.

Custodial history: Donated to the Mennonite Archives of Ontario by Robert Woolner in February 2007.

Scope and content: The fonds consists of scrapbooks/photo albums related to her mission service and to family history, clippings, correspondence related to her mission service and travel diaries of her journeys to and from Argentina.

Notes: An encyclopedia entry for Una Cressman may be found in GAMEO.

Original archival description created March 2007 by Sam Steiner

File list:

  1. Two autobiographical clippings -- Christian Monitor (May 1940) and Mennonite Hospital News (1951?), some autobiographical notes by Una Cressman, a short article on the Cressman family; also clippings from Gospel Herald for years Una served in Argentina
  2. Correspondence, 1955-1958 with Mennonite Board of Missions personnel and family.
  3. Scrapbook / photo album, 1940s from mission field in Argentina
  4. Scrapbook / photo album, late 1940s-1950s from Argentine Chaco
  5. Scrapbook / photo album, late 1950s
  6. Scrapbook / photo album, assorted from 1940s to 1970s, including some from Fairview Mennonite Home
  7. Momentos from Argentina, including Christmas cards sent by Una Cressman from Argentina, and a friendship book prepared by Argentinian nations in 1944/45.
  8. Photo album, Cyrus Cressman family and descendants, 1860s-1980s
  9. Photo album, Peter Shirk family and descendants, 1900-1980s
  10. Photocopy of Cyrus Cressman family album
  11. Photocopy of Peter Shirk family album
  12. Diaries
    February-March 1940 (Journey from home to Argentina)
    February-march 1946 (Journey from Argentina to Canada)
    October 1952-April 1953
  13. Christmas cards, etc. sent by Cressman


Generally 9:00 am - 4:00 pm Monday to Friday. An appointment in advance is recommended.


Mennonite Archives of Ontario
Conrad Grebel University College
140 Westmount Road North
Waterloo, ON N2L 3G6

Phone: 519-885-0220 x24238