Robert Klymasz fonds:

An Inventory of Robert Klymasz Papers at the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections

Inventory prepared by Vladimira Zvonik
University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections
Winnipeg, Manitoba

Finding aid encoded by Vladimira Zvonik (2006)
Finding aid written in English.

Collection Summary

University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections,
Winnipeg, Manitoba

Robert B. Klymasz

Robert Klymasz fonds


36 cm of textual records; 26 photographs, 52 slides, 2 negatives, 1 video-cassette; and 1 audio-cassettes

Mss 176, PC 170 (A.06-61)

English and Ukrainian

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Biography of Dr. Robert Bohdan Klymasz

Dr. Klymasz was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1936. In 1957 he obtained his BA from the University of Toronto, and later studied at Charles University, Prague (1952), University of Manitoba (M.A. 1960), Harvard University (1960-1962), and Indiana University (Ph.D., 1971). He married Shirley Zaporozan in 1962, and they have two daughters Andrea and Lara. In 1967 he joined the Canadian Museum of Civilization and served as its first programme director for Slavic and East European Studies. Throughout his career he has held several prestigious positions, including: the executive director of the Ukrainian Cultural and Educational Centre (Oseredok ) in Winnipeg; visiting associate professor in Folklore, Department of Folklore, Memorial University (Newfoundland); visiting professor in Folklore and Slavic Studies at the University of California at Los Angeles; and visiting scholar at the Harvard Divinity School.

Upon his retirement in 2000, he was named Curator Emeritus with the Canadian Museum of Civilization, and is currently an adjunct professor with the Department of German & Slavic Studies (University of Manitoba). Dr. Klymasz is a renowned expert on Ukrainian Canadian folklore, having extensively written, published, and lectured on this subject. His publications include: An Introduction to the Ukrainian-Canadian Folksong Cycle (1970); Ukrainian Folklore in Canada (1980); "‘Svieto': Celebrating Ukrainian-Canadian Ritual in East Central Alberta Through the Generations" (1992); and The Icon in Canada (1996). Dr. Klymasz also published many reviews of books and exhibitions in Canada's ethnic press (Ukrainian and Icelandic ). He continues to pursue his recent interest with the grants from the University of Alberta (CIUS) and the University of Manitoba (CUCS).

In 1993, as a curator with the Museum of Civilization, Dr. Klymasz began a comprehensive study on community life in Gimli Manitoba. Fieldwork on this project began in 1993, and continued on an annual basis every summer until the summer of 2001. The project which became known as the Gimli Community Research Project (G.C.R.P.), was meant to offer insight on what makes the Town of Gimli a safe and prosperous town to live in. The early work was low-key in nature, focusing on the town's life and culture, attending for example, meetings of the town's council, various public forums, proceedings of the local public law court, and meetings of the Board for the New Iceland Heritage Museum. Gradually the fieldwork shifted to monitoring phenomena that gave Gimli its "dreamtown" quality. The final report was completed in 2002, and was entitled "Dream Town": Art and the Celebration of Place in Gimli, Manitoba.

In 2004 he delivered a paper at the Congress of Humanities and Social Sciences in Winnipeg. Dr. Klymasz was awarded the Marius-Barbeau Prize by the Folklore Studies Association of Canada (Laval University) for his studies in Ukrainian Canadian Folklore.

In 2005 he completed the Archival Research Project on Walter Klymkiw, the conductor of Koshetz Choir, titled "Playing around with Choir": the Correspondence and Papers of Walter P. Klymkiw. The manuscript is held at the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The fonds consists of correspondence (2002-2006); research material (Koshetz Project, Ukrainian Canadian Music); various announcements of Ukrainian Canadian cultural events; collections of post cards/collection cards; and a photograph collection (PC 170, A.06-61).

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Arrangement of the Papers

This collection is arranged into five series and Photograph Collection -PC 170

  • 1. Biographical info and Correspondence
  • 2. Reviews
  • 3. Ukrainian Canadian Cultural Events
  • 4. Research Material - Koshetz Project, Ukrainian Music
  • 5. Post cards, Collection cards
  • PC 170 (A.06-61) - Photograph Collection

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Restrictions on Access

No restrictions on Access

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Restrictions on Use

No restrictions on Use.

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Custodial History

The fonds was donated by Dr. Robert Klymasz in 2006.

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Other Finding Aids

A.02-32, A.03-87; A.05-52

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Detailed Description of the Collection

Biographical info and Correspondence []

11 Biographical info, 2006
2 General Correspondence, 1974-2003
3 Christmas card from J.B. Rudnyckyj, 1992

Christmas card was designed by Zhdan, J.B. Rudnyckyj's son

4 General Correspondence, 2006
5 General Correspondence - Outward, 2005-2006
6 CIUS - re: Petro Chornyj Memorial Fund, 2005-2006
7 Oseredok, 2001-2006
8 Ukrainian Catholic Women's League, Ottawa Branch, 1994-2001
9 University of Manitoba, 2002-2006
10 University of Manitoba - courses, 2001-2002
11 Cantor Course, 2004
12 Ukrainian Folklore Centre, University of Alberta, 2005-2006

includes - "Local Culture and Diversity on the Prairies" by A. Nahachewsky (Final Project Report)

see also a video cassette "Real Communities: Local Culture and Diversity on the Prairies" in PC 170 (A.06-61)

13 Business cards

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Reviews, 2006
114 "Kovzar's Children: a Century of Untold Ukrainian Stories" by Skrypuch

reviewed by R. Klymasz

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Ukrainian Cultural Events, 1979-2006
115 Ukrainian Canadian Cultural Events, 1979-2006
16 25th Anniversary of the Centre for Ukrainian Canadian Studies, 2006

includes minutes and correspondence

17 Zemovay: Ukrainian festival, 2005

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Research Material,
118 Sawycky, R. - Magic of Mykola Fomenko; Cossack Love Song - correspondence and research material, 2006

includes a audio tape -

A: "The Cossack Love Song" in World Music

B: "The Magic of Mykola Fomenko"

Koshetz Project
21 O. Koshetz letters (English translations by R. Klymasz), 2006

Letters were published in a collection of Koshetz letters "Lysty do druha, 1904-1931"

2 O. Koshetz: French- Canadian Songs, 2006

includes correspondence and research material

3 O. Koshetz - Research material, 1917-2006


Research material was sent to R. Klymasz by Roman Sawycky in 2006

4 Program of Koshetz Choir performance at Washington, D.C., May 24, 1940
5 Vasyl Barvinsky - articles by Roman Sawycky, 1983
6 Archbishop Lawrence Huculak - articles in "Western Catholic Reporter", February 20, 2006
7 Holy Family Church (1001 Grant Avenue) - Song Book, 1985 Holy Family Church (1001 Grant Avenue) - Parish Directory, [ 2000 ]
8 Ukrainian Catholic Hymns - St. Nicholas Church, 2000
9 Ukrainian Canadian Studies - Filed Notes, vol. 2, no.1, 2006
10 St. John's High School Publication (yearbook) - "The Torch", 1944-45
11 Churches - newsletters, pamphlets, prayers, 1971-2006
31 Holy Family Ukrainian Catholic Church (1001 Grant Ave.) - newsletter, 2002-2006
Ukrainian Music
32 Robert Klymasz' paper: Prolegomena for the study of Winnipeg's Legacy of Ukrainian Music: a Tentative Guide to Selected Sources of Information, 2006
3 Ukrainian experience in Quebec by Claudette Berthiaume-Zavada, 1994

(English, French)

includes R. Klymasz' letter to P. Melnycky

4 Danny Schur - Ukrainian music in Canada - articles, 2006
5 Klymasz' notes on Ukrainian Music (source: Richard Stites), 2005
6 Klymasz' notes on Ukrainian Music (various source books), 2006
7 Ukrainian Canadian Music - articles, 1951-2006
8 Various articles (Ukrainian history, music), 1960-2006

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Post cards, Collection cards
38 Ukrainian costumes, paintings
10 Ukrainian Catholic Shrine/Churches
11 Ukrainian Artists
12 Iconography
13 "Spirit of Ukraine" - exhibit, WAG, 1991
14 Ukrainian Post Cards, 1920's

4 cards

- bought at the Ukrainian bookstore on Main St.

15 Post Cards - Winnipeg
16 Collection cards - Tretyakov State Gallery (1984) Pecherska Lavra (1980) Ukrainian paintings (1985)
17 Ukrainian Catholic Churches - Bell-towers, 1964

Photo prints by Shirley Z. Klymasz

18 Ukrainian post cards - misc.
Posters - oversize

Map Cabinet #4

"Spirit of Ukraine" - exhibit, WAG, 1991 - 2 posters

Zabava: Western Canada's Largest Ukrainian Music Festival, 2006 - 1 poster

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PC 170

Box Fd. # Title: Biographical info - photographs Year
1 1 1-2 U.N.Y.F. (Toronto) - Brothers of R. Klymasz 1945
3 R. Klymasz (age 9) with his father Nicholas 1945
4 R. Klymasz with his parents 1956
5 R. Klymasz with his parents and brother Russell 1963
6 Junior U.N.Y.F.(Toronto) - R. Klymasz 1952
7-8 R. Klymasz - Rainbow Restaurant (Toronto) 1954
9 U.N.Y.F. (Toronto) R. Klymasz - home party 1954
10 W.& M. Klymkiw' house party - Alpha Omega - Students Club, Winnipeg 1959
11 R. Klymasz beside his friend's car 1950's
12-15 R. Klymasz - B.A. (U of T) graduation day 1957
16-17 R. Klymasz - M.A. (U of M) graduation day 1960
18 Myron Momryk; George Fedak 1990
19 R. Klymasz - Walter, Mary, Slawko Klymkiw 1956
20 R. and Lora Klymasz -Walter, Mary Klymkiw 1993

Box Fd. # Title: Ukrainian National Choir Year
1 2 21 Ukrains'ka Republikans'ka Kapelia 1919
22 Ukrains'ka Republikans'ka Kapelia (3 copies) 1922
23 Ukrains'ka Republikans'ka Kapelia 1921
24 Ukrains'ka Republikans'ka Kapelia - negative 1921
25 Ukrains'ka Republikans'ka Kapelia - negative 1922

Photographs were sent to R. Klymasz by Roman Sawycky in 2006

Box Fd. # Title: St. John's College Year
1 3 26 High School Class - St. John's 1923-24

(photo in bad condition)

Box Fd. # Title: Ukrainian Churches-Bell-towers
1 4 27 Ukr.Cath. Church, Ethelbert, Manitoba 1962
28 Ukr. Cath. Church, Gilbert Plains - negative 1984
29 Church bell-tower cross - slide

Box Fd. # Title: Kiev, Ukraine - slides Year
1 5 1-20 Kiev - historical buildings (20 slides) 1959

R. Klymasz' trip to Europe, 1959

Box Fd. # Title: St. John's, Newfoundland - slides year
1 6 1-31 St. John's, Newfoundland 1978-79

R. Klymasz' trip to Newfoundland in 1979

(includes handwritten notes with commentary)

Box Fd. Title: Video cassette
1 Real Communities: Local Culture and Diversity on the Prairies -

see also Mss 176, Box 1 Fd.12 - Ukrainian Folklore Centre correspondence

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