Memorable Manitobans: Arthur John Bonnett (1874-1942)

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Arthur John Bonnett
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Building contractor, architect.

Born at Woodstock, Ontario on 4 July 1874, he came to Winnipeg in 1904 and worked as a general contractor under the name of A. J. Bonnett and Brothers.

On 15 February 1899, he married Catherine Annie Gillies (1879-1959) at Woodstock and they subsequently had three children: Cecil George Bonnett (1903-1978), Robert Frank Bonnett (1904-1957), and Marion Isabel Bonnett (1906-?, wife of Ellwood Simon Van Alstyne). He was a member of the Winnipeg Board of Trade, Builders’ Exchange, Masons (Lord Selkirk Lodge), IOOF (Hiawatha Lodge), St. John's Curling Club (President, 1922-1923), and St. John’s United Church.

He died at his Winnipeg home, 101 Cathedral Avenue, on 3 March 1942 and was buried in the St. John's Cathedral Cemetery.

Some of his construction works in Manitoba included:

Building

Location

Year

Status

Braemar Court

470-476 Balmoral Street, Winnipeg

1910

 

Braemar Court (annex)

470-476 Balmoral Street, Winnipeg

1910

 

Johnstone Block

209-215 Pacific Avenue, Winnipeg

1910

 

Jackson House

15 West Gate, Winnipeg

1912

 

Winnipeg Hebrew Free School (Talmud Torah)

121 Charles Street, Winnipeg

1912

 

Shragge Warehouse

400 King Street, Winnipeg

1913

 

Gronbach Block

394 Selkirk Avenue, Winnipeg

1914

 

Plaxton Block (addition)

244 Main Street, Winnipeg

1914

Demolished (1999)

Weidman Warehouse Stable

244-246 Jarvis Avenue, Winnipeg

1916

 

Weidman Warehouse (addition)

244-246 Jarvis Avenue, Winnipeg

1919

 

Bucknam-Walmsley Garage Building

275 Smith Street, Winnipeg

1920

Demolished (1983)

Rice Knitting Warehouse

165 Selkirk Avenue, Winnipeg

1921

 

King Memorial United Church

127 Cobourg Avenue, Winnipeg

1927

 

Allen Garage

1370 Main Street, Winnipeg

1928

Demolished (?)

Imperial Oil Service Station

566 Osborne Street, Winnipeg

1929

Demolished (?)

Miles House

241 Cathedral Avenue, Winnipeg

1930

 

Monk House [Mrs. Mary Monk]

377 Oakwood Avenue, Winnipeg

1930

 

St. John’s Curling Rink (repairs)

305 Machray Avenue, Winnipeg

1931

Demolished (?)

Winnipeg Humane Society Building

1059 Logan Avenue, Winnipeg

1935

Demolished (?)

Sources:

Ontario birth registration [Cecil George Bonnett], Ancestry.

Birth, marriage, and death registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Permits passed $10,000,000 mark,” Winnipeg Tribune, 10 July 1913, page 1.

“Issues permits for buildings worth $244,000,” Winnipeg Tribune, 25 March 1920, page 3.

“Building permits,” Winnipeg Tribune, 18 April 1925, page 15.

“Week’s permits exceed $100,000 by hood margin,” Winnipeg Tribune, 21 July 1928, page 5.

City of Winnipeg Building Permit 3145/1929 [Imperial Oil Service Station], City of Winnipeg Archives.

“Safeway Stores receive four building permits,” Winnipeg Tribune, 10 July 1929, page 3.

“Permits issued for new houses number fifteen,” Manitoba Free Press, 3 May 1930, page 24.

“Winnipeg building permits for four months nearing three million dollar mark,” Winnipeg Tribune, 3 May 1930, page 33.

“53 permits issued in week aggregate value of $77,800,” Winnipeg Tribune, 27 June 1931, page 6.

City of Winnipeg Building Permit 3847/1931 [St. John’s Curling Rink], City of Winnipeg Archives.

“Repairs to rink,” Manitoba Free Press, 14 November 1931, page 15.

“Building notes,” Winnipeg Tribune, 2 November 1935, page 5.

“New home near city pound for humane society,” Winnipeg Free Press, 9 November 1935, page 2.

“A. J. Bonnett, builder, dies,” Winnipeg Tribune, 3 March 1942, page 17.

“Frank Bonnett, early radio ‘ham’ dies at home,” Winnipeg Free Press, 15 January 1957, page 4.

Obituary [Catherine A. Bonnett], Winnipeg Tribune, 26 December 1959, page 27.

Obituary [Cecil G. Bonnett], Winnipeg Free Press, 11 December 1978, page 45.

Henderson’s Winnipeg and Brandon Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

We thank Rick Mutton and Jordan Makichuk for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 21 November 2023

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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