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Hamm, Martin (1899–1982)

Proper Title

Martin Hamm fonds

Dates of Creation


Physical Description

2 cm of textual material and 2 audio tape cassettes

Biographical Sketch

Martin Hamm, son of Martin and Helena Penner Hamm, was born in Blumenhof, South Russia on June 29, 1899. The family moved to Schoenau in 1910. Hamm was converted at the age of 17, was baptized, and joined the Evangelical Mennonite Brethren Church. Plans to study abroad were interrupted by his father’s death, and he became a self-taught teacher, a profession he was unable to continue in Canada.

He married Anna Warkentin on August 28, 1921 and in 1926, the couple emigrated to Canada. The following year he took up farming in the Peace River settlement in northern Alberta and also served as minister of the La Glace Mennonite Brethren Church. The family moved to Chilliwack, B.C. in 1945, where he became a charter member of the Chilliwack Mennonite Brethren Church. In July 1953 his wife died. He married widow Elizabeth Neufeld Willms of Winnipeg in 1954 and became step-father of four additional children. The couple settled in Winnipeg and joined the Elmwood Mennonite Brethren Church. Martin Hamm died on February 6, 1982. His extended family remembers his deep Christian convictions, his cheerful optimism, his zest for life and congenial friendship.

Custodial History

The Martin Hamm fonds was donated in May 1981 by Carolyn Hamm.

Scope and Content

The Martin Hamm fonds contains autobiographical material, some written by Hamm in the Gothic German script, some published in the Mennonitische Rundschau, and some transcribed by Carolyn Hamm as related to her by her grandfather. Also in this fonds are two audio tape cassettes (interviews by Carolyn Hamm in 1981) of Martin Hamm speaking about his childhood in Borosenko, his immigration to Canada, farming and church life in La Glace, Alberta, and his move to British Columbia.


  • Volume 965.
  • Title based on contents of fonds.
  • The Accession Number is 1981–38.
  • Finding aid: Small collections H, File 1.
  • Finding aid for tapes: NA-15–040 and NA-15–041.

File List

Volume 965

  • 1:1 Life in the Peace River country, 1927–45, the story of Martin Hamm as told to Carolyn R. Hamm. – 1981.
  • 1:2 Tagebuch von Martin Hamm (Borosenko Colony in South Russia). Covers the period from 1908 to 1918.
  • 1:3 Mennonitische Rundschau articles:
    • Durch Sudamerika und zur Mennonitische Welt Konferenz; in 9 instalments. – August, 1972 to October, 1972.
    • Aus der alten in die neue Heimat; in 52 instalments. – October, 1970 to November, 1971.
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