Oct 142014

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Rev. George A. McMillan Fonds

Rev. George A. McMillan Fonds: Photographs Related to Indian Residential Schools


McMillan Fond Photos

Indian Residential Schools

509/2 Superintendents of Home Missions Excerpt 1: General Files



Title: Rev. George A. McMillan Fonds

Dates: 1918 – 1975 (predominant 1943 – 1959)

Extent: .17m textual material, 155 still images, approx. 347 slides; two boxes

Repository: The United Church of Canada Archives Manitoba Northwestern Ontario Conference and All Native Circle Conference

Retrieval Numbers: Acc. 99-6, 2012-32; ID # 3333; PP 128, PP129

Historical Note:
George McMillan UCCArchivesWpg mcmillan 29

George McMillan UCCArchivesWpg mcmillan 29

Rev. George A. McMillan (1902 – 1959) served the United Church of Canada for over twenty-five years. McMillan was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba on April 30, 1902. After completing his Grade 10 education McMillan went to work for Canadian Northern Railway, before taking a position as Associate Boys’ Work Secretary at the Winnipeg YMCA. In 1929 McMillan enrolled in the Collegiate at United College, beginning his theological studies at United College in 1931. He was ordained in 1934. During his ministerial career he served Benito, Manitoba, Miniota, Manitoba, Sparling United Church in Winnipeg and Knox United Church in Fort Frances, Ontario. McMillan served as the Chairman of both the Christian Education Committee’s Radio Committee and Manitoba Conference’s Radio Committee, where he helped produce United Church broadcasts and contributed morning devotions. He was chairperson of Winnipeg Presbytery, President of Conference in 1950 and was honored by United College with an honorary Doctorate of Divinity Degree in 1955. McMillan was also Superintendent of Home Missions from 1956 to 1959. Rev. McMillan passed away on August 21, 1959. His memorial was held in Augustine United Church in Winnipeg. A memorial fund was created in the memory of Rev. McMillan to support the building of churches and manses in isolated First Nations communities.

Scope and Content:

The surviving records of George A. McMillan include approximately 347 color slides and 49 black and white still images depicting northern Manitoba communities in the 1950s (Berens River, Churchill, Cross Lake, Fisher River, God’s Lake, Herb Lake, Illford, Indian Springs, Island Lake, Kelsey, Little Grand Rapids, Lynn Lake, Moak, Nelson House, Norway House [including the Residential School and Rossville], Oxford House, The Pas, Poplar River, Red Sucker Lake, Sandy Lake, Snow Lake, South Indian Lake, Thicket Portage, Thompson, Wabowden); also Brandon Industrial School, Portage la Prairie Indian Residential School and Vita.

Textual records pertaining to McMillan’s ministerial work in various pastoral charges (St. Stephens-Broadway [Winnipeg], Dauphin Plains, Benito, Thunder Hill, Grandview, Miniota,[all Manitoba] Sparling [Winnipeg] and Knox [Fort Frances]), work in Christian Education, work as Conference President, work in radio broadcasting (both for the Christian Education Committee and Manitoba Conference’s Radio Committees) and work as Superintendent of Home Missions are also included in the fonds. Biographical records regarding McMillan can also be found in the fonds. Finally, records collected by McMillan pertaining to church Union, historical figures (John Wesley, John Black, Samuel Matheson) and mission work amongst First Nations groups exist within the fonds.

Finding Aids:

Folder-level descriptions and descriptive inventories of the slides and still images are available. The photographs have been digitized as individual images. The slides have been digitized on contact sheets. Cliff McMillan’s folder-level descriptions of George McMillan’s records exist as a file folder within the fonds.   See “Rev. George A. McMillan Fonds: Photographs Related to Indian Residential Schools” for details of the 24 related still images/slides.

Related Material in this Repository:

Additional records pertaining to George A. McMillan exist and can be found through the Conference of Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario finding aid (“Special Committee to Study the Indian Work in Manitoba Conference” in the Committees/Task Forces/Working Groups series, Conference Home Missions Committee series, Records of Churches in Indian Communities series, Records of the Superintendents of Home Missions series, Broadcasting series and Church Home for Girls series). Biographical file available.

Custodial History:

The records arrived at the archives in two separate accessions. The first batch of records arrived in1997 and was accessioned in 1999. The second batch of records arrived in 2012 via Cliff McMillan (George McMillan’s son).

Arrangement Note:

Order – sometimes chronological, sometimes topical – was imposed on the records prior to their arrival at the archives. This order was largely retained during processing, although some folders were amalgamated due to topical similarity and folder size. The slides have been arranged according to location. The order imposed on the photographs prior to donation has been, mostly, retained. Identical duplicate copies of records and slides were removed from the collection. Some items were re-formatted via photocopying.

Documentation Digitization:

Relevant items in this fonds related to Indian Residential Schools are included in The United Church of Canada Archives Manitoba Northwestern Ontario Conference and All Native Circle Conference 2014 Index of IRS Related Records and were digitized for submission to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Contact the Archivist for more information.

Language:   Nearly all of the material is written in English. A single document is written in syllabics.

Restriction on Access: Some restrictions on access may apply.

Accruals: Further additions to the collection may be forthcoming.

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The fonds includes the following series:

 George McMillan Ministerial Work and Church Records

  • Ministerial Work at St. Stephens-Broadway, Dauphin Plains, Benito, Thunder Hill and Grandview
  • Ministerial Work at Miniota and Sparling
  • Ministerial Work at Knox – Fort Frances
  • Dedication Services
  • Augustine United Church
  • Holy Bible
  • A Service Book
  • The Book of Praise

George McMillan Manitoba Conference Work

  • Board of Christian Education and Boys’ Work
  • Conference Annual Meeting – Recommendations for Proceedings
  • George McMillan – Conference President
  • United Church Academic Papers and Sermons
  • Articles for Annual Meetings of the Four Western Conferences
  • Kenora – Rainy River Presbytery
  • Correspondence – Forming of Atikokan United Church

United Church Radio Material

  • C.B.C. Morning Devotions 1943
  • Radio Devotions [1945]
  • Radio Devotions 1949
  • Poems and Readings Used in Radio Devotions
  • Sunday School of the Air
  • Radio Committee for Manitoba Conference
  • Radio Devotions Workshop (Chicago)
  • “Come to Church” Radio Program
  • CBC “Religious Period”

Home Missions Work

  • Commission to Study Indian Work
  • George McMillan – Superintendent of Home Missions
  • Northern Missions Work
  • Residential Schools and Missions in First Nations Contexts
  • From Lakes to Northern Lights
  • Cree Hymn Book
  • United Church Missions Publications

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United Church History Material

  • John Wesley
  • John Black and Archbishop Samuel Matheson
  • The New Outlook, United Church Observer, The United Churchman
  • File on Church Union

Still Images

  • 129 black and white photographs; 170 colour slides.


  • Biographies of George McMillan; Obituaries
  • Conferral of Honorary Doctorate of Divinity Degree
  • George McMillan Fund
  • Various Publications and Documents
  • George McMillan Records as Described by Cliff McMillan
  • Book of Common Prayer, Hymn Book
  • Prayer Book for Little Children