Fonds PR1901 - Viola Martin fonds

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Viola Martin fonds

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    • Source of title proper: Title based on the content of the records.

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    Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

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    • 1905-1978 (Creation)

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    Physical description

    24 paintings and other material

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    Name of creator


    Biographical history

    Viola (Vi) Dorcina Burton was born December 22, 1910 in Burtonsville, Alberta; she was the daughter of Cornelius (Neilie) and Marie Louise (Facette) Burton. Both originally from eastern Canada, Cornelius Burton and Marie Louise Facette were married May 9, 1905 in Parnell County, Minnesota.

    The Burtons, along with their two sons, had come to Alberta from Wisconsin in 1908, settling west of Edmonton, Alberta in what would become Burtonsville. In 1919, the family moved to Brightbank, Alberta. Beginning in 1923, the Burtons lived in Waterways, Alberta, where they operated the Waterways Hotel. Vi studied at Alberta College from 1930 to 1931. After briefly living in Edmonton, the family moved to Alberta Beach, Alberta in June of 1933.

    On July 29, 1935, Vi married Raymond Martin (1900-1987), whom she had met while at Waterways. A son, Marlo Raymond, was born July 31, 1936. After living in Conklin, Alberta and Ferguson, British Columbia, the Martins returned to Alberta Beach. A daughter Marlene Helen, was born in Edmonton on February 10, 1939; at the time, Ray was in California looking for work. The Martins family moved to Kellogg, Idaho in 1939. They later lived at various locations in California and in Victoria, British Columbia. Vi and Ray eventually moved to Florida. Vi was an accomplished artist, producing oil paintings, watercolours and landscape sketches.

    She died in California in 2007.

    Custodial history

    Scope and content

    The fonds primarily consists of 24 oil paintings, painted from memory and photographs by Viola Martin specifically for the Provincial Archives of Alberta and donated to the Archives as the Burton Memorial Collection; the paintings are of various homes and scenes at Burtonsville, Waterways and Alberta Beach from the lives of Vi’s parents, Cornelius and Louise Burton.

    The fonds also includes descriptions and photographs of the paintings, a publication about Burton family descendents (The Burtons of Black Cape and their Descendents), newspaper clippings about Cornelius and Louise Burton, a small published booklet entitled The Gaspé with sketches by Vi Martin, a poem about Cornelius and Louise Burton, photographs of the Burton family and places of importance to the family, certificates for the Bituminous Sand Extraction Company, Limited and the publication Incidents in the Life of John L. Sullivan and Other Famous People of Fifty Years Ago.

    Notes area

    Physical condition

    Immediate source of acquisition

    Viola and Raymond Martin deposited the records, in memory of her parents, in the Provincial Archives of Alberta in 1978.


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        Language and script note

        The material is in English.

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        Restrictions on access

        Access Conditions: None

        Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

        Use Conditions: Permission for use required. Subject to the Copyright Act.

        Finding aids

        Inventory is available.

        Associated materials

        See PR1978.0195 for photographs of the presentation of the oil paintings to the Provincial Archives of Alberta on July 10, 1978.

        Viola Martin also gave paintings to the Stony Plain Multicultural Heritage Centre.


        Further accruals are not expected.

        General note

        Information for the biographical sketch is taken from Spirit and Trails of Lac Ste. Anne, which is available in the Provincial Archives of Alberta Reference Library, 971.233 Sp48 PAA and from the records. This fonds was donated at the same time, and in the same accession as the following fonds: the Raymond Martin fonds (PR1902) and the Alberta Patterson fonds (PR1903); and the following discrete item: a painting of Viola and Ray Martin’s cabin at Cameron Bay (PR1904).

        General note

        Includes accession PR1978.0194.

        Physical description

        Includes 14 photographs, 0.04 m of textual records, and 1 photograph album.

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