Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: William George Martin (1886-1973)

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William George Martin
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Cleric, MLA (1958-1959), MLA (1959-1962), MLA (1963-1966).

Born at Devonshire, England in 1886, he came to Canada in 1910. He attended Victoria College, University of Toronto, and received a divinity degree from Wesley College. He was the first Minister of Public Welfare in Ontario (1930-1934) and, in 1935, was the historian on a Canadian Arctic expedition. He served 19 years as the minister of Grace United Church in Winnipeg (1936-1955). In 1943, he was given an honorary degree by the University of Winnipeg.

He was married twice, first on 4 April 1917 to May Isabel Kappele (1878-1955, widow of H. H. Bicknell) at Wentworth, Ontario and second on 1 April 1957 to Dorothy Ellen Hardham (1911-2007) at Winnipeg. In 1958, he was elected MLA from Winnipeg St. Matthews and was re-elected in 1959 and 1962.

He died at the Misericordia Hospital on 19 December 1973 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.


Ontario marriage registration, Ancestry.

“Grace church minister's wife dies,” Winnipeg Tribune, 21 January 1955, page 2.

“Powers-that-be lacked vision says minister as Grace closes,” Winnipeg Free Press, 27 June 1955, page 3.

“Dorothy Hardham is honored at shower,” Winnipeg Free Press, 12 March 1957, page 13.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 20 December 1973, page 29.

Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

Obituary [Dorothy Martin], Winnipeg Free Press, 21 March 2007, page 32.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough and Oliver Bernuetz.

Page revised: 14 March 2021

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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