Memorable Manitobans: Harry Don Mewhirter (1874-1957)
Businessman, MLA (1914-1915).
Born at Sugar Grove, Illinois on 30 July 1874, son of Robert Mewhirter and Esther Robinson, he was educated at New Providence (Iowa) and Des Moines (Iowa), with a degree in pharmacy and chemistry.
He came to Canada in 1906 and was employed as Manager of the Gutta Percha and Rubber Company of Winnipeg. He was elected to the Manitoba Legislature at the 1914 general election, never having previously voted in a provincial or federal Canadian election, and having taken out Canadian citizenship shortly before the election. He did not run in the 1915 general election, being replaced by Thomas Glendenning Hamilton. At the time of the 1916 federal census, he was living at Strasbourg, Saskatchewan.
He was married three times. In the 1890s, he married Nancy Mewhirter (?-?) and had two children: Raleigh Mewhirter and Myrne Mewhirter. They divorced in May 1897. He then married Mary Marie Moe (1878-?, daughter of Gunder J. Moe) of Decorah, Iowa. They had one child: Merle Harry Mewhirter Martin (born South Dakota, 1898). With his third wife, Alma Ann Leuser (1889-1968), he had a daughter, Betty Mae Mewhirter.
He died on 2 September 1957 and was buried in the Saint Rose of Lima Cemetery, Chesapeake City, Maryland.
The Canadian Parliamentary Guide, 1914.
1916 Canada census, Library and Archives Canada.
“Choose Mewhirter,” Manitoba Free Press, 3 January 1914.
Harry Don Mewhirter, FindAGrave.
We thank Denise Hahn and Oliver Bernuetz (Legislative Library of Manitoba) for providing information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 5 April 2022