Memorable Manitobans: William James McMartin (1871-1920)
Born at Martintown, Ontario in January 1871, he moved to Duluth, Minnesota before coming to Winnipeg in 1904. He established the Winnipeg Ceiling and Roofing Company to manufacture sheet metal goods including corrugated iron and metal ceilings, siding, cornices, skylights, and fireproof windows. He was also President of the Edmonton Metal Works (Edmonton, Alberta), Treasurer of the Sheel Metal Manufacturing Company (Calgary, Alberta), President of the Duluth Corrugated and Roofing Company (Duluth, Minnesota), and President of the Economy Foundary (Portage la Prairie).
He and wife Maud Richardson (1875-1954, daughter of William Richardson) had four children: Vernon McMartin (1894-?, wife of Edward Reffell), Ruth Richardson McMartin (1897-?, wife of Guy S. Clarkson), Robert McMartin (1901-?), and Marjorie McMartin (1908-1922). The family lived at 283 Kingsway, designed by architect Max Zev Blankstein, from 1912 to his death. He was a member of the Carleton Club, AF & AM, and Presbyterian church. His recreations included farming and stock-raising.
He died of pneumonia at his Winnipeg residence, 283 Kingsway, on 11 April 1920 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.
1911 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.
Who's Who and Why, Volumes 6 and 7, 1915-1916, page 694.
Death registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
“Business man is pneumonia victim,” Winnipeg Tribune, 12 April 1920, page 11.
Obituary, Winnipeg Tribune, 15 April 1920, page 6.
“Important announcement to western sheet metal trade,” Winnipeg Tribune, 19 December 1922, page 6.
“Returns to visit,” Winnipeg Tribune, 30 July 1927, page 6.
Max Blankstein: Architect by Murray Peterson, Winnipeg Architecture Foundation, 2022.
We thank Jordan Makichuk for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 10 January 2023