Papers of Ragnhild Whiting and Sister Marjorie Raphael

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The collection includes: biographical notes on Ragnhild Whiting; diaries; correspondence; texts of talks and address by Whiting; printed material and press cuttings; and the newsletters of St Margaret's Convent, Haiti, written by Sister Marjorie Raphael.

Administrative / Biographical History

Ragnhild Almquist Whiting (Rhon), Anglican physiotherapist and missionary in Haiti, was born in Norway in 1912 and trained as a physiotherapist there. She settled permanently in Canada in 1933 where she married and raised two daughters. In 1962 she took a year's physiotherapy course at McGill University and then worked as a physiotherapist until her retirement in 1977, a year after the death of her husband. At that time she was living in Windsor, Ontario and, in 1980, was sent by the Huron Diocese of the Anglican church to Haiti to help in the orthopaedic clinic of St Vincent's School for handicapped children in Port-au-Prince. The school was started by the Society of St Margaret, an Episcopal religious community of women based in Boston that first went to Haiti in 1927. Whiting returned to Haiti every year for six to eight months at her own expense and from 1985 was an associate of St Margaret's.

During the remaining months she was in Canada giving talks and attending events to raise money and interest in the Society and the work. In 1984 she helped to organise a Physiotherapy Association in Haiti and throughout her time there she was involved in training and encouraging rehabilitation workers. She was in Haiti during a period of political upheaval and was working at the Hospital Sainte Croix, Leogane during the election of Aristide in 1990. Whiting left Haiti for the last time in 1991. She was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Windsor in 1990.

Sister Marjorie Raphael was born on 17 October 1923. She was a member of the Society of St Margaret and worked in Haiti from 1955 to 1963 and from 1978 to 1994, often based at St Margaret's convent in Port-au-Prince. Both Whiting and Raphael were still alive in 2001.

Conditions Governing Access

Open to researchers. It is essential to arrange an appointment in advance to view the archive in order that someone can be available to help. Please contact us by email at divinity-CSWC@ed.ac.uk. Telephone the Centre on: 0131 650 8900. Postal address: Centre for the Study of World Christianity, University of Edinburgh School of Divinity, New College, Mound Place, Edinburgh, EH1 2LX.

Other Finding Aids

A paper catalogue is available to visitors to the Centre.

Archivist's Note

Description originally written and researched by Caroline Brown in June 2001. This had been added to Archives Hub in August 2012 by Louise Williams.

Conditions Governing Use

Reproduction of materials (for example by digital camera) is free for private research and educational use, although we ask researchers to sign an agreement. Please contact us for enquiries on using the material in a commercial setting, for which there will be a fee. Contact us by email at divinity-CSWC@ed.ac.uk. Telephone the Centre on: 0131 650 8900. Postal address: Centre for the Study of World Christianity, University of Edinburgh School of Divinity, New College, Mound Place, Edinburgh, EH1 2LX.

Accruals

No further additions to the colleciton are expected.

Geographical Names