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Memorable Manitobans: James Mathewson Ewens (1862-1947)

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James Mathewson Ewens
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Born at Bridport, Dorsetshire, England on 22 October 1862, son of George Browne Ewens (a manufacturer of twine, nets and canvas who exported to Newfoundland) and Susan Spittal Mathewson, he was educated in the public schools of Dorsetshire, quitting school at the age of seventeen to become a shipping clerk for the Union Steamship Company. He left the position to emigrate to Canada in 1881, breaking virgin prairie near Glendale to establish a farmstead. He sold it in 1898 and moved to a 480-acre property near Bethany. He broke land, built barns and outbuildings, and raised pure-bred Shire horses, shorthorn cattle, Shropshire sheep, and Berkshire swine. He exhibited his prize-winning livestock at agricultural fairs around Manitoba.

On 7 January 1886, he married Evelyn Bessie Pearson (1859-1925), daughter of John Pearson and Sarah Eliza Greenwood, at Glendale. They had eight children: James Allen Ewens (1887-1970), George Basil Ewens, Evelyn May Ewens (1891-1977), Arthur Cyril Ewens (1894-1978), Thomas Ewens (1896-1968), Marjorie Bertha Hargreave Ewens (1898-?), Constance Gwendolyn Ewens (1900-1946, wife of Thomas H. Bell), and Phyllis Mary Violet Ewens (1905-1994, wife of J. Leslie Sturk, daughter-in-law of John Neriah Sturk). He served as a trustee on the Bethany School board and a director of the Minnedosa Exhibition Board. He was a member of the Anglican Church.

He died at Winnipeg on 9 July 1947 and was buried at Bethany.

See also:

Reminiscences of an Old Timer by James Mathewson Ewens


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

1901 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.

The Story of Manitoba by F. H. Schofield, Winnipeg: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1913.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 11 July 1947, page 14.

Obituary [Thomas Ewens], Winnipeg Free Press, 2 July 1968, page 39.

Obituary [Evelyn May Ewens], Winnipeg Free Press, 4 August 1977, page 32.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

We thank C. Terry Sturk and Nathan Kramer for providing information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 20 October 2021

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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