Memorable Manitobans: William J. Boyd (1862-1943)
Born at Kemptville, Ontario on 7 April 1862, son of Hugh Boyd and Maria Kilfoyle, brother of N. Boyd, he was educated in Ontario public schools. He came to Winnipeg in 1885, where he started in the confectionery business on Main Street, where the Canadian Pacific Railway Telegraph office later stood, purchased the business of W. H. Paulin, and afterwards that of the Bateman Bread Company. Over time, he built up an extensive trade in bread, and was the proprietor of several confectionery stores and embarked in the manufacture of cakes, ice cream and confectionery. In 1913 he disposed of his bread business to the Canada Bread Company, and went into the manufacture of confectionery for the wholesale trade, Boyd Candy Company, occupying the whole five stories and basement of the factory at the corner of Portage and Spence. In 1913 he built a nine-story office building, known as the Boyd Building, at the corner of Edmonton and Portage.
On 16 March 1887, he married Frances Irene Venn (?-1925). They had four sons (Alva Kilfoyle Boyd, William Hugh John Boyd, Myron Nathaniel Boyd, and Raymond V. Boyd) and four daughters (Stella Irene Boyd, Valetta Boyd, Beatrice Alona Boyd, and Joy Boyd).
He contested the South Winnipeg constituency on behalf of the Conservative party in the 1915 provincial election but was defeated by A. B. Hudson. He served as President of the Conservative Association of Winnipeg, as well as President of the Association of South Winnipeg. He was one of the first members of the Carleton Club, St. Charles Country Club, Empire Club, Canadian Club of Winnipeg, a member and Past Master of the AF & AM (Ionic Lodge), and Holy Trinity Anglican Church.
Pioneers and Prominent People of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Canadian Publicity Company, 1925.
Birth registration [Stella I. Boyd], Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Article on death of W. J. Boyd, Winnipeg Tribune, 12 May 1943.
“Free Press Necrology Files,” Winnipeg Elite Study, G. Friesen Fonds, Mss 154, Box 15, File 16, University of Manitoba Archives]
We thank James Astwood for providing information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 11 June 2018
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