Eggleston, Wilfrid, 1901-1986: Wilfrid Eggleston, author and journalist, was born in 1901 in Lincoln, England, but came to Canada with his family in 1909. His parents homesteaded in the west and Eggleston was educated at Regina Collegiate and Calgary Normal School. He taught school in Alberta (1919-1924), and began publishing weekly articles in the Lethbridge Herald in 1920 under the by-line Altair.
Eggleston graduated from Queen's University in 1926 with an honours B.A. in English and history and worked as a reporter and editor for the Toronto Star, 1926-1933. In 1929 he became the Star's parliamentary reporter in Ottawa and was a member of the Parliamentary Press Gallery, 1929-1952, and its president, 1933-1934. After resigning from the Star, Eggleston became the parliamentary correspondent for Reuter's, 1934-1936. He was the Canadian correspondent for the Manchester Guardian, 1945-1947, and the Ottawa editor of Saturday Night, 1945-1949. During the 1930's and 1940's, Eggleston's syndicated columns appeared in about fifty Canadian newspapers and between 1945 and 1950 he also contributed to Canadian radio.
Eggleston acted as assistant secretary and researcher for the Royal Commission on Dominion-Provincial Relations, 1937-1939, and co-authored two of its reports. During World War II, he served as Press Censor and then Director of Censorship in Ottawa, 1939-1944. His association with Carleton University dated from 1942, when he began teaching English, and after teaching a journalism course in 1945, Eggleston became the first director of Carleton's School of Journalism in 1947, resigning from that position in 1966. He was an early member of the Canada Foundation, 1945, and served as its president during the 1950's. In 1946, he was a founder of the Ottawa Civil Liberties Association and its first president.
Eggleston was always interested in Canadian literature and as well as teaching at Carleton, wrote extensively on the subject throughout his career. He was an active member of the Canadian Authors' Association and the Canadian Writers' Foundation. He privately published a chapbook of poetry in Toronto, 1927, and later published two novels: The High Plains (Macmillan 1938, reprinted Borealis 1978) and Prairie Symphony (Borealis 1978). He edited the L.M. Montgomery correspondence to Ephraim Weber, The Green Gables Letters (Ryerson 1960), and published a study on Canadian literature, The Frontier and Canadian Letters (Ryerson 1957, reprinted McClelland & Stewart 1977). His memoirs, Literary Friends (Borealis 1980), record his many literary associations.
Eggleston also published a number of histories, including ones on Canadian scientists during W.W.II, the National Capital Commission, the development of nuclear energy in Canada, and Newfoundland and Confederation. His history of the National Research Council was published as National Research in Canada (Clarke, Irwin 1978) and The Road to Nationhood (Oxford University Press 1946) traces the history of dominion-provincial relations in Canada. He wrote the text for a promotional work on Canadian industry: Canada At Work (Provincial Publishing Company, Montreal 1953). His autobiography, While I Still Remember (Ryerson), was published in 1968.
Eggleston was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire, 1943. He received many other awards in his life including honorary degrees from Carleton University, 1966, and the University of Western Ontario, 1967, and the National Press Club Award in Journalism, 1968.
Wilfrid Eggleston married Magdalena Raskevich in 1928 and they had one daughter, composer Anne Eggleston. Magdalena Eggleston was herself an author, and published a novel, Mountain Shadows (1955), based on her experiences growing up in a Lithuanian community in Alberta.