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- Kuryliw family
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2 mp4 files (7.29 GB, 428.9 MB)
13 sheets of handwritten text
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Archival description area
Name of creator
Anna Zabolotna Kuryliw and Wasyl (Bill) Kuryliw were Ukrainian immigrants who settled in Sudbury, Ontario and became actively involved in Sudbury's Ukrainian community as well as in the community at large.
Wasyl Kuryliw was born in the village of Potochyshche, Ukraine, in 1910. He emigrated to Canada in 1928, working first in Saskatchewan as a contract farm labourer and later finding work in various places during the Depression, including Fort William. After joining Inco, he initially worked as a miner and then trained as a welder, remaining with the company until his retirement in 1975.
Anna Zabolotna was also born in Potochysche, in 1910. After receiving her elementary education in the village, she attended high school in Horodenka and completed several courses at the University in Lviv. Wasyl Kuryliw sponsored Anna's voyage to Canada in 1936 after several years of courtship by correspondence, and the couple was married immediately following her arrival. They lived first in Kirkland Lake, moving to Sudbury in 1938. Anna and Wasyl had three children: Ihor, Sonia and Oksana.
Known for his commitment to the Ukrainian community, Wasyl Kuryliw was a founder of the Ukrainian National Federation's Sudbury branch in 1930. Throughout his life, he remained a dedicated volunteer in the UNF - serving in various capacities, assisting in renovations and fundraising, and providing financial support. He also volunteered for "The New Pathway", a Ukrainian Canadian newspaper.
In the wider community, he encouraged many businesses to join the local Chamber of Commerce, volunteered at hospitals and supported other causes. He enjoyed teaching and playing the mandolin and other instruments. Kuryliw also played cello in the Sudbury Symphony and was an avid outdoorsman.
Anna Zabolotna Kuryliw was actively involved in the Ukrainian Women's Organization of Canada, serving as branch president, secretary and cultural co-ordinator. She also headed the National Executive's Organizational Committee.
In later years, they established the Wasyl and Anna Kuryliw Family Foundation at the University of Alberta. The purpose of the foundation is to fund scholarships for those studying Ukrainian ethnography.
The couple moved to Toronto in 1995; Anna Kuryliw died in 2001 and Wasyl Kuryliw in 2004.
Scope and content
The collection consists of the film Chapters & Verses: Action Bill's Walk through Life - a documentary about Wasyl Kuryliw directed by his daughter Oksana Kuryliw and produced by Oksana Kuryliw and John Leeson; Sonia Holiad's introduction to the premier screening of the film on September 12, 2017 at the Spadina Theatre at Alliance Française in Toronto; poems by Ivan Franko handwritten by Wasyl Kuryliw, which he used to take with him to work around 1965-1974 in Sudbury; photographs of the Edmonton screening of the film, on October 27, 2017, and a poster of the event.
Anna Kuryliw's weeding dress with the veil is also part of this collection, as well as the wedding photograph of Wasyl and Anna. There is also a photo print of 4 women (Anna among them - 3rd from the left) with a sewing machine, which was bought by Vasyl and sent to the Old Country with the proposal to Anna to marry her. Her wedding gown was sewn with it.
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Audiovisual Collections Room