This collection is of particular interest for the detailed diaries kept by an Oxford clergyman and his wife during a large proportion of the twentieth century. They contain details of their daily activities and thoughts, as well as comments on the weather and events of local and national importance.
Robert Martin was born in Ceylon in 1895, went to Bedford Grammar School and matriculated at Lincoln College in 1914. The same year he was commissioned to the 9th Battalion Bedford Regiment and billeted with the Setterington family at Finchley, where he met Madge. He served at Ypres, was discharged due to ill-health in 1918, and obtained his B.A. in 1919 and M.A. in 1921. He was appointed as an assistant curate in the church of Oxford St. Michael in 1922. After his ordination as a priest in 1923, he became Chaplain of New College (1925-46), perpetual curate of St.Michael's (from 1927), Rural Dean of Oxford (1943-59) and rector of the parish of St.Martin and All Saints (from 1943). He resigned from office in1961, and died in 1966.
Madge Martin (nee Setterington) was born in Leeds in 1899, and she and Robert married in 1917. They moved to High Street in Oxford in 1923, then to Wellington Place in Oxford St.Giles in 1936. After Robert's death, she moved to Plantation Road, and the diaries she kept while living there survive for several years up to and including 1989.
This archive was deposited in two installments in 1990, as accession numbers 3141 and 3151, on permanent loan. Apart from the diaries, there are other personal papers, photographs, anniversary and other cards, theatre programmes, drawings, accounts, and orders of service.