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John H. Archer

ARCHER, John H.  (1914-2004)
Administrator, Educator, Historian, Librarian

John H. Archer was born on July 11, 1914, near Broadview, Saskatchewan.  He was a teacher in rural districts between 1933 and 1940, and during World War II served with the Royal Canadian Artillery in the United Kingdom, North Africa and Italy.  After the war he enrolled at the University of Saskatchewan where he earned a Bachelor’s degree and a Master of Arts degree in history and then a Bachelor’s Degree in Library Science from McGill University. 

From 1951 to 1964 he served as Saskatchewan’s legislative librarian, was assistant clerk of the Legislature from 1956 to 1961, and the provincial archivist from 1957 to 1962.  In 1964 Archer became director of libraries at McGill University where he worked until 1967.  At Queen’s University he was archivist and an associate professor of history – while earning a Doctoral degree in history.  Archer returned to his home province and to the new University of Saskatchewan, Regina Campus in 1969, and was installed in 1970 as the Principal and in 1974 became the first President of the new University of Regina, a position he held until his retirement in 1976.

Archer served on several boards, advisory councils and Royal Commissions, he is the author of Land of Promise (1969), Saskatchewan: A History (1980), Honoured with the Burden (1987),   and edited the memoirs of John Diefenbaker in One Canada (1975 - 78).

John Archer received the Order of Canada and the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, the main library of the University of Regina campus is named for him.  He passed away on April 5, 2004.


Revised by Elizabeth Seitz

Archival Collections (Finding Aids in PDF format)

75-14 - Personal and Professional Papers, 1940-75

80-30 - Personal Artifacts Related to Saskatchewan Roughriders, 1971

80-35 - Speeches and Reports, 1954-1976

2007-18 - Memorabilia, 1970-2007

2007-28 - Personal and Professional Papers Including Memorabilia and Video Tapes, 1882-2001