There are various types of records in this digital collection. All are originals from the St. Francis Xavier University Archives, the St. F.X. Extension Department, the Coady International Institute, local archives and other corporations. Those that were chosen for this project represent the best and/or most significant records which illustrate the history, development and activities of The Antigonish Movement, The St. F.X. Extension Department, and The Coady International Institute. The records primarily cover the period from 1920 to the present, with an emphasis on the 1920’s-1950’s. The majority of the records are from The Extension Department Collection (RG 30) and to a lesser degree from The Coady International Institute Collection (RG 50), both housed at the St. F.X. University Archives. The records on this site constitute only a small percentage of the total number of records from these two important and very valuable collections.

St. F.X. Extension Department

Pamphlets: The largest number of items on this site are pamphlets and other publications created and published by The Extension Department. They were meant to be primarily instructional and educational in nature and were widely distributed across Canada and the United States by the Extension Department for discussion by study clubs and at kitchen meetings. Most were either written by Extension Department staff or by people working in the cooperative movement. They primarily deal with the 1920’s-1950’s which were the glory days of The Antigonish Movement. Topics that are covered are:
  • the general nature, development and philosophy of the Antigonish Movement
  • Catholic social action
  • rural life
  • women
  • adult education
  • credit unions
  • coop housing
  • cooperative stores and management
  • cooperative societies
  • health care
  • the economy
  • labour and labour unions
  • forestry
  • agriculture
  • the fisheryThe Extension Bulletin: Very significant to note on this site is the complete run of The Extension Bulletin. It became the central and most important vehicle designed to provide general material for discussion in study clubs. It was published bi-weekly between 1933- 1939 with a circulation of 8000.

Leaflets, posters, minutes, papers, reports: Other more important documents are:

  • promotional leaflets, posters, minutes, papers, and reports for clergy and rural and industrial conferences (1924-1960’s)
  • Board of Governors minutes depicting the establishment of The Extension Department (1928) and the Coady International Institute (1959)
  • Extension Department annual reports (1930-2005)
  • The Extension News (1947, 1951)

  • a sampling of letters from the 1930’s regarding Extension and cooperative activities
  • ledgers of study club and rural and industrial conference registrants (1930’s, 1950’s)
  • newspaper clippings and articles from Extension Department scrapbooks (1930- 1940’s)
  • transcripts for CJFX broadcasts (1940’s-1950’s)
  • papal blessings (1938, 1947)
  • the original manuscript of Masters of Their Own Destiny (1938) written by Dr. Moses Coady which is significantly different from the published version
  • a selection of letters from Dr.Coady’s professional and personal papers regarding speaking tours (1948-1952)
  • letters, telegrams, acknowledgements and tributes regarding Dr. Coady’s death on July 28, 1959
  • a sampling of Extension Department course materials, programs, and reports for the period from the 1980’s-1990’s

Coady International Institute

Also significant is the documentation regarding the establishment and official opening of the Coady International Institute (hereafter Coady) in 1959. Valuable records which present an overview of the history and activities of the Coady included are:
  • Coady annual reports (1961-2008)
  • Coady newsletters (1963-2003)
  • Coady student newsletters (1979-1996)
  • Coady yearbooks (1960’s-1970’s)
  • course materials
  • overseas workshop reports
  • conference reports


A large percentage of this digital collection includes photographs which form part of the Extension Department and the Coady International Institute collections of the St. F.X. Archives. They were either created or collected by the staff of these two institutes. The majority deal with the Maritime Provinces and covers the period primarily from the 1930’s-1960’s. There are, however, a sampling of photographs from approximately the 1970’s to the present on this site. A small number of photographs were chosen from the main St. F.X. Archives photograph collection. As well, various other photographs were obtained from St. F.X. Extension Department, The Coady International Institute, The Congregation of the Sisters of St. Martha (Bethany) Archives, The Beaton Institute, CBU, CJFX Radio, and The Casket Printing & Publishing Co. Ltd. Only the most significant were chosen to depict the more important activities, events, and people connected with the Antigonish Movement, the St. F.X. Extension Department, and the Coady International Institute. The majority are of :
  • people who worked in the cooperative movement, Extension Department and Coady staff
  • credit unions, coop stores, coop services, coop housing, coop dairies, coop warehouses
  • conferences, study clubs and workshops
  • Coady activities both at home and abroad


A sampling of audio recordings was chosen from The Extension Department and Coady International Institute collections of the St. F.X. Archives. Most were recorded in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Important to note are:
  • Dr. Moses Coady and Rev. Michael Gillis speaking about the philosophy, history, and development of the St. F.X. Extension Department and the Antigonish Movement
  • papers presented at rural and industrial conferences
  • CJFX radio broadcasts produced by the St. F.X. Extension Department as part of the Life in these Maritimes and Extension Speaks programs. Transcripts and other documentation regarding these recordings are also available on the site.
~Kathleen MacKenzie Archivist