Ukrainian pioneer and potter recognized in newly revised book

SASKATOON - In December the new revised edition of the book "Made in Saskatchewan: Peter Rupchan, Ukrainian Pioneer and Potter" by award-winning author Judith Silverthorne was launched. This exciting biography highlights the innovative, eccentric and industrious nature of one of Saskatchewan's first prominent potters.

Rupchan was more than just another pioneer trying to survive the hardships and personal tragedies of early settlement. Considered a folk hero by some, by others a genius in his own time, Rupchan worked his clay with a passion, fulfilled a dream and left behind a meaningful historical legacy.

Rupchan established his pottery works just north of the northeastern Saskatchewan community of Usherville. From there he traveled extensively, selling and bartering his wares during the depression and early 1940s. The book also captures other innovations and the humor of this unique pioneering spirit. It is this stalwart character and his adventurous experiences that the author, Ms. Silverthorne brings to life in this remarkable portrayal of his life.

The book, "Made in Saskatchewan: Peter Rupchan, Ukrainian Pioneer and Potter" features the world of Rupchan (1882-1944) as he struggled to find local clay, build his kilns, and capture wind power for grinding his clay and glazes to produce his valuable art.

The book's author was recently honored with the Saskatchewan Book Award for Children's Literature. She is a two-time recipient of this award, and has several books to her credit. She has also written various articles for Saskatchewan's weekly newspapers.

Copyright © The Ukrainian Weekly, December 14, 2003, No. 50, Vol. LXXI

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