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Fonds Level Description

Accession Number: 84-1000


Helen Marryat fonds. Additions. -- 1841-1945. -- 1 folder.

Biography / History

Helen Lauder Marryat (nee Fowlds) was born at Hastings, Ontario, October 28, 1889. She was the only daughter of Frederick W. Fowlds and the former Elizabeth Sutherland, and the great granddaughter of Henry Fowlds, pioneer lumberman and founder of Hastings. On the maternal side, her grandfather was John Sutherland, Mayor of Cobourg, Ontario, in 1875. She received her education at Hastings, and the Norwood High School, and she graduated as a nurse from Grace Hospital, Toronto. During World War I, Helen served as a nursing sister in France, the Dardanelles, Salonica, and England, and she was awarded the Royal Red Cross decoration by George V in recognition of gallantry under fire (she was wounded while helping to evacuate a hospital in the Middle East). On April 25, 1921, Helen Fowlds married Captain Gerald Marryat who had served in the War with the Canadian Engineers. They lived in Montreal and then retired to Hastings where Gerald conducted an insurance agency (which Helen continued to run after his death). Helen Marryat is best known as a local historian who collected information and wrote many newspaper articles on Hastings Ontario, Asphodel Township and Peterborough County. Helen Marryat died in Hastings (Ashfield House) on June 16, 1965.

Custodial History


Scope and Content

This addition to the fonds includes World War I correspondence, 3 "water level" notebooks (Hastings), and typescript copies of Fowlds family correspondence, Asphodel Township, 1841. In December 2001, Trent University Archives launched an online exhibit which depicts Helen Fowld's experiences in World War I. All her letters and diaries are transcribed and are found at the following site:


Title based on subject of fonds.

Some of the records are extremely brittle and should not be reproduced by photocopy.

This fonds was donated by an unknown source.

Restrictions: N

This is an addition to 69-001.

For related records see: 72-001.  

Finding Aid

This additional group of papers consists of approximately eight letters written by Helen, Donald and Eric Fowlds from France and the Dardanelles during World War 1. There are excellent descriptions of preparations for Christmas dinner at the military hospital where Helen was stationed and also letters home from Helen after Donald was killed in action. The papers also contain typescripts of letters written by early members of the Fowlds family from Asphodel Twp in 1841. There is a miscellaneous packet of photograph negatives and assorted clippings.