Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: William Wardell Cross (1860-1939)

Building contractor.

Born at Oakville, Ontario on 10 February 1860, he came to Winnipeg in 1890 where he worked as a building contractor. He was responsible for building a diverse range of structures: stores, single family houses, garages, apartment blocks, and a bowling alley. He also owned and operated a farm near Rosser.

He was married twice, first on 20 December 1893 to Isabella Catherine Nesbitt (1867-1907) at Oakville with whom he subsequently had four children: ? Cross (?-?, wife of Walter E. Carr), Mary Isabel Cross (1895-1973, wife of Paul Guyot DuVal), Charles Gordon Cross (1897-1921), and Elwood Cross (?-?). The family lived at 349 Carlton Street (c1902). On 3 July 1920, he married Catherine Mary McConkey (?-?). He was a member of the AF & AM (St. John's Lodge) and Khartum Shriners.

He died at Winnipeg on 10 June 1939 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.

Some of his construction works in Manitoba included:

Building

Location

Year

Status

Glamour Terrace

367 Kennedy Street, Winnipeg

1902

 

Panama Court

785 Dorchester Avenue, Winnipeg

1903

 

Rideau Hall

85 Kennedy Street, Winnipeg

1905

 

Prince Rupert Block

376-384 Ellice Avenue, Winnipeg

1906

Demolished (?)

Russell House

213 Kingsway, Winnipeg

1908

 

McPherson House

36 Balmoral Street, Winnipeg

1909

 

Grosvenor Court

161 Stafford Street, Winnipeg

1909

 

Amulet Apartments

640 Westminster Avenue, Winnipeg

1909

 

Bannatyne Apartments / Shipman Court

543 Bannatyne Avenue, Winnipeg

1910

 

Chevrier House

104 Balmoral Street, Winnipeg

1910

 

Dorchester Court

162-166 Lilac Street, Winnipeg

1910

 

Ulrich House

54 Balmoral Street, Winnipeg

1911

 

Erzinger House

50 Yale Avenue, Winnipeg

1911

 

Aynsley Court

734-738 Dorchester Avenue, Winnipeg

1912

 

Hugo Apartments

261 Wellington Crescent, Winnipeg

1912

Demolished (?)

McBeth House

31 McBeth Avenue, Winnipeg

1912-1913

 

Milan Apartments

890 McMillan Avenue, Winnipeg

1913

 

Lucerne Apartments

847 McMillan Avenue, Winnipeg

1913

 

Sources:

Ontario marriage registration, Ancestry.

Obituary [Isabella Catherine Cross], Winnipeg Tribune, 23 March 1907, page 15.

Marriage and death registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“G. Cross dies after fall on pitchfork,” Winnipeg Tribune, 29 August 1921, page 3.

Obituary, Winnipeg Tribune, 12 June 1939, page 24.

Rideau Hall Apartments, 85 Kennedy Street by Murray Peterson, Peterson Projects, February 2007.

We thank Nathan Kramer for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 7 November 2021

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