Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Charles Victor Combe (1888-1953)


Born near London, England on 23 February 1888, he came to Manitoba at the age of 14 and worked on the farm of his uncle near LaRiviere. In 1910, he graduated from the University of Manitoba with a degree in philosphy and political economy then joined the staff of the Manitoba Free Press. He was its City Editor when, in late 1914, he enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force.

He went to France as a member of the 8th Battalion where he was wounded and gassed. On 25 April 1915, he was captured at Ypres, along with his friend W. A. Alldritt, and was a prisoner-of-war at Glesson, Germany. He was released in February 1917 as part of a prisoner exchange and received his military discharge in April 1918, having received the Distinguished Conduct Medal. He returned to Winnipeg and to journalism at the Winnipeg Tribune, where he served successively as City Editor, Night Editor, and Magazine Editor. He became its Financial Editor in 1944 and held the position to his death.

On 12 December 1918, he married Jessie Winifred Cochrane (who had served in France as a Red Cross nurse during the war) at Rossburn. They had five children: James Combe, Charles Joseph Combe, Stanley A. Combe, Douglas Combe, and Elsie Alvina Combe (wife of Gerald Patz).

He died suddenly at his Winnipeg home, 530 Dominion Street, on 26 March 1953.


Attestation papers, Canadian Expeditionary Force, Library and Archives Canada.

“Pte. Combe a prisoner,” Manitoba Free Press, 10 August 1915, page 26.

“Canadian tells war experience,” Manitoba Free Press, 25 September 1918, page 14.

Marriage registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Photo caption, Winnipeg Tribune, 13 April 1944, page 20.

“Social and personal,” Winnipeg Free Press, 21 October 1947, page 12.

“Finance expert dies at 68 years,” Winnipeg Free Press, 27 March 1953, page 47.

We thank Robert Alldritt for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 3 September 2014

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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