Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: George William Leonard (1880-1959)


Born at Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, England on 25 May 1880, he immigrated to Canada in 1886 before heading to the United States. He earned a BA degree from the University of Syracuse in New York state and became a school teacher. He married Lois Disinger (c1891-1961) prior to moving to Manitoba around 1913. The couple had six children: James Lea “Jim” Leonard (1908-1982), Mary Leonard (1910-1993, wife of Roy Hertzog), Samuel Doney “Sam” Leonard (c1912-?), Elizabeth Lois “Betty” Leonard (1915-?, wife of Mr. Dow), Inez Leonard (c1920-1963, wife of Alfred Lamb), and Claude Timothy “Tim” Leonard.

The family took up residence at Moosehorn where he farmed and taught at local schools. With the onset of the First World War, he enlisted in May 1916, heading overseas with the 200th Battalion. After his military discharge in December 1918, he returned home and continued his teaching career, at Wingham School (1925-1926), Moosehorn School (1926-1929, 1942-1946), Steep Rock School (1929-1932, 1940-1942), Bethany School (1934-1939), and Ashern School (1946-1947). In the 1945 provincial general election, he was the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation candidate for the Fairford constituency but was defeated by Premier Stuart S. Garson.

He died at the Deer Lodge Hospital on 16 August 1959 and was buried in the military section of Brookside Cemetery.


Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Death registrations, British Columbia Vital Statistics.

1916 Canada census, Library and Archives Canada.

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

“Election nominations total even 100 Friday [Will oppose Garson],” Winnipeg Free Press, 28 September 1945, page 2.

“26 Candidates losing deposits,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 October 1945, page 1.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 17 August 1959, page 33.

Winnipeg estate file #62105, George W. Leonard, Archives of Manitoba.

Obituary [Lois Leonard], Winnipeg Free Press, 14 February 1961, page 27.

Obituary [James Lea Leonard], Winnipeg Free Press, 16 June 1982, page 73.

Obituary [Mary Hertzog], Winnipeg Free Press, 9 December 1993, page E2.

Obituary [Roy Hertzog], Winnipeg Free Press, 1 February 1999, page C7.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.

Page revised: 1 February 2020

Memorable Manitobans

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