Fonds F 530 - Ross and Peggie Thatcher fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Ross and Peggie Thatcher fonds

General material designation

  • Textual record
  • Graphic material
  • Sound recording
  • Moving images

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Reference code

F 530

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • 1917-1976 (Creation)
    Thatcher, Ross and Peggie, 1917-1988

Physical description area

Physical description

1.430m of textual records
1044 photographs
5 audio discs
2 audio cassettes
1 film reel; 16 mm
19 photographs : slides; 35 mm
10 albums

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Wilbert Ross Thatcher was born in Neville, Saskatchewan on May 24, 1917 to Wilbert Thatcher Sr. and his wife. Thatcher received his primary and secondary education in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan and his post-secondary training at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. He graduated from Queen's in 1936 with a Bachelor of Commerce degree.

Prior to his entry into politics, Thatcher worked as an assistant to the Vice-President of Canada Packers in Toronto, Ontario. When Thatcher's father fell ill in the late 1930s, Thatcher returned to Moose Jaw with his wife and son to assist in the family hardware business. Thatcher's political career began when he was elected to the Moose Jaw city council in 1942. He served a two year term before entering the federal political arena in 1945 as a Member of Parliament (MP) for the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) party in the Moose Jaw riding.

After serving as an MP for Moose Jaw with the CCF for ten years, Thatcher left the party in 1955 over divergent viewpoints on corporate taxation policy and joined the federal Liberal caucus. He ran unsuccessfully as an Independent federal candidate in the Assiniboia riding (for two years), and in 1957 Thatcher joined the Saskatchewan Liberal Party. In 1959, Thatcher won the leadership of the Saskatchewan Liberal Party elected in the Morse constituency. Following the 1960 election he became Leader of the Official Opposition to a CCF government under Woodrow Lloyd. In 1964 Thatcher was elected Premier of Saskatchewan when the Liberal party defeated the CCF party.

During his first term as Premier of Saskatchewan, Thatcher sought to increase Saskatchewan's appeal to outside investors by cutting government spending, increasing privatization, and selling Crown corporations. Thatcher believed that Saskatchewan's "socialist" reputation was hindering economic development in the province.

Upon re-election in 1967, Thatcher's increasing fiscal conservatism became widely unpopular as his government instituted hospital utilization fees, and severely cut health and education funding. Thatcher's Liberal government practices were routinely at odds with the Federal Liberal party of Canada under Pierre Trudeau, leading to conflict between the two levels of the Liberal government.

After two terms as Premier, Thatcher's Liberals were defeated by Allan Blakeney's New Democratic Party in the Provincial election on June 22, 1971.

Peggie Thatcher was born Adrah Leone McNaughton ca. 1916 in Worthing, England to A. Charles and Flora McNaughton. When she was a young child her family immigrated to Canada and settled in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan where her father owned and operated the Capital Ice Company. She received her primary education at King George Elementary School and secondary education at Central Collegiate in Moose Jaw.

Prior to her marriage, McNaughton wrote articles for the women's pages of the Moose Jaw Times Herald. In Moose Jaw she volunteered with the Howard Johnson Society, was a member of St. Andrew's United Church and was an ardent supporter of both the Girl Guides and the Saskatchewan Liberal Women's Association. She was also a locally renowned badminton player.

Ross Thatcher and Peggie McNaughton were married in January of 1938, while Ross was living and working in Toronto. Once the family moved back to Saskatchewan in 1939 and Ross Thatcher had entered politics in 1942, their life became increasingly public. Peggie Thatcher provided a supporting role to her politically active husband. However, in 1972, one year after Ross Thatcher's death, Peggie Thatcher ran unsuccessfully in the riding of Regina East.

Ross and Peggie Thatcher had one son, Colin, born on August 25, 1938 in Toronto, Ontario.

Ross Thatcher died at his home in Regina on July 22, 1971. Peggie Thatcher continued to live in Regina until her death on July 1, 1988.

Custodial history

W. Colin Thatcher, son of Ross and Peggie Thatcher, donated these records to the Regina Office, Saskatchewan Archives Board, in one accession in 2009: 2009-013 (January 21, 2009).

Scope and content

This fonds consists of records created, accumulated and by Ross and Peggie Thatcher focusing primarily on the public side of Ross Thatcher's political career prior to and while he was Premier of Saskatchewan. Most of the items were collected and compiled by Peggie Thatcher. Some items feature other members of the family, but the central focus is the public life of Ross and Peggie Thatcher.

The types of records included are newspaper clippings; photographs; photo albums; scrapbooks; slides; certificates of achievement and recognition; correspondence; copies of Ross Thatcher's speeches; Ross Thatcher's 1936 Bachelor of Commerce thesis "The Marketing of Milk" and yearbook; audio cassettes; a 16 mm film and some mementos.

Also included are official portraits of Pierre Elliot Trudeau and Roland Michener, signed by photographer Yousuf Karsh; an official signed family photograph of Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra, Sir Angus Ogilvy and their children; audio recordings of Thatcher's final Speech from the Throne recorded on five long play albums; original political cartoons featuring Ross Thatcher and his Cabinet and audio recording of Ross Thatcher's funeral. Most of the photographs are unlabelled and unidentified, and were taken by a Saskatchewan Government Services photographer.

No series assignment has been applied to the records in this fonds; however, most records are described at the item or file level.

Notes area

Physical condition

Textual records, photographs, and film are in good physical condition.
Some of the albums are fragile, and none of the original sound recordings should be played.

Immediate source of acquisition


Order imposed by archivist.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Location of originals

Box number(s): 19

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

Records are open for research use.

No access to original sound recordings. CD copies are available for consultation.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Use, publication and/or reproduction of records are subject to terms and conditions of the Copyright Act.

To consult the records, visit or contact the Regina office.

Finding aids

SAFA 416 consists of a fonds level description, some file level listings and some item level listings of photographs and media items.

Uploaded finding aid

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No further accruals are expected.

General note

Location for retrieval: Regina - Henderson.


Archival staff replaced the original file folders with acid-free folders and removed metal fasteners. Photographs were placed in Mylar sleeves. Oversize items have been removed to appropriate oversized storage boxes and have been interleaved with acid free tissue.

Alpha-numeric designations

Photographs: GM-PH-5(1)-(3) to GM-PH-123
Moving Images: MI-262
Sound Recordings: SR-2, SR-3, SR-4(1)-(5)

Alternative identifier(s)

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Standard number

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Control area

Description record identifier

F 530

Institution identifier

Rules or conventions

Saskatchewan Archives. Archival Description Manual 2004.



Level of detail

Language of description

  • English

Script of description

  • Latin


Contents of the fonds.

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