Fonds RG-102.28 - Karl Kruschen fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

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Karl Kruschen fonds

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  • Architectural drawing
  • Graphic material

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

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  • 1960-1970 (Creation)
    Kruschen, Karl

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Physical description

73 architectural drawings
12 photographs : b&w

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Karl Heinz Kruschen (1918-2000) was a Waterloo-based architect who was responsible for designing many buildings on Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo Campus as well as many local churches. Born in Berlin, Germany, Kruschen graduated from the Technical Universities of Berlin and Munich with degrees in engineering and architecture. Upon graduation he worked for the Department of Public Works in Wiesbaden, Germany where he worked on the post-war rebuilding of the Provincial Parliament Building and the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden (State Theatre and Opera House).

Kruschen and his wife Helga immigrated to Canada in 1951, settling in the Burlington/Oakville area, where he worked as a draftsman and architectural assistant with firms in Hamilton and Toronto. In 1955, Kruschen became the principal architect for Grace Lutheran Church, Oakville, and in 1958 he established his own firm, Kruschen and Dailey, in partnership with engineer William G. Dailey. Kruschen and Dailey were responsible for the designs of Lutheran, Christian Reformed, Pentecostal and Baptist churches throughout Ontario and as far away as Whitehorse, Yukon. They also designed industrial, commercial, residential, and school buildings in the Toronto area.

Because of his involvement in designing so many churches, Kruschen was elected to the Eastern Canada Synod Committee on Church Architecture and became a consultant for the Department of Church Architecture within the United Lutheran Church of America. In the early 1960s, Kruschen and Dailey were hired as the principle architects for Waterloo Lutheran University (now Wilfrid Laurier University). They were responsible for developing the overall campus design as well as many key buildings, including residence buildings, the Student Union building (Student Services Building today), Theatre-Auditorium, Dining Hall, Arts addition, Library addition, Central Teaching building (Dr. Alvin Woods Building today), as well as the Seminary building, including Keffer Memorial Chapel.

In 1963, Kruschen and Dailey relocated to Waterloo where he continued to work for the university while also designing many churches in the Region, including St. Peters Lutheran Church in downtown Kitchener. After his retirement in the late 1970s, Kruschen obtained a MA in Near Eastern Studies from WLU (1979) and pursed his love of archeology, spending several summers in the Middle East traveling and working with the Smithsonian Institute as chief engineer on archeological digs in Tunis, Tunisia. Kruschen died on August 17, 2000 at the age of 82.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The Karl Kruschen fonds contain over 70 architectural drawings and photographs of buildings on Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo Campus from the 1960s. Drawings and photographs are of the campus library, seminary building, chapel, fine arts centre, campus overview, athletic field, arts building and teaching addition, west teaching building, student union building, and residence buildings. Drawing types include building designs, landscape designs, lighting designs, and architect sketches.

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Physical storage

  • Shelf: Room 1-124 Shelf 29-5-2
  • Box: Room 1-124 Shelf 21-3-4