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Alberta, Past and Present, Historical and Biographical
Vol 3
Robert J. Ritchie Paterson

Robert J. Ritchie Paterson, a public accountant, practicing his profession in Lethbridge, was born in Greenock, Scotland, January 23, 1890, his parents being William and Elizabeth (Sutherland) Paterson, who were also natives of the land of hills and heather, in which country the father passed away. He was a retail grocer throughout his life and died at the age of sixty-five. His father was John Paterson, who was a crofter and farmer but William Paterson turned toward commercial pursuits and devoted his life to the grocery business. He was a well-read man, progressive in relation to all public interests as well as his business affairs and his life was ever guided by his belief as a member of the Presbyterian church. In politics he was a Conservative. His widow is now living in Lethbridge. She is a daughter of Robert Sutherland, who was a Scotch farmer. In the family were two children, the younger being Isabelle Whitson Paterson, who is now connected with the public library of Lethbridge.

Robert J. Ritchie Paterson pursued his education in the Greenock Academy and when he left school entered an office as an apprentice accountant. He completed his course at Greenock and at Glasgow and in 1913, well equipped for professional duties, he came to Canada, settling first in Winnipeg. There he was employed as an accountant for three months, after which his firm transferred him to Lethbridge, in April, 1914. He continued in the employ of others for two years, acting as manager of the office at the same time and was then admitted to a partnership, which relation also existed for two years. On the expiration of that period he purchased the business, which he has since conducted under the name of Ritchie, Paterson & Company. He is accorded a good clientage, his business growing year by year, as the public becomes familiar with the thoroughness and efficiency of his methods. That he is now successful is indicated in the fact that he has a branch office at Medicine Hat. His work takes him frequently from home, as he does accounting over a considerable territory from Lethbridge. Today he employs a staff of eight people, devoting practically his entire time to the business and his professional record is a most creditable one.

Mr. Paterson is independent in politics. His interest in civic affairs and in the improvement of business conditions in the community is shown in the fact that he is a member of the Rotary Club. He also belongs to the Masonic fraternity and has membership in the Knox Presbyterian church, serving at the present time as a member of its board and taking active and helpful part in everything that tends to promote the material, intellectual and moral progress of the community.


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