Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: David Dale Owen (1807-1860)

Geologist, surveyor.

Born near New Lanark, Scotland, 1807, he was a son of the British social reformer, Robert Owen. He emigrated to the United States in 1828. He attended lectures in geology and chemistry in London, England, 1831-32, and graduated from the Ohio Medical College in 1836. He began his career of geological surveying in 1836 with a trip through Tennessee.

In the summer of 1848, while making a geological survey of Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota for the United States government, he descended the Red River to Lake Winnipeg, and ascended the Winnipeg River to Lake of the Woods and thence to Lake Superior. He described the character of the country around Upper Fort Garry (Winnipeg) and the rock exposures at Lower Fort Garry, giving a list of fossils and analyses of two specimens of rock. The beds he stated to be of the same age as the Upper Magnesian Limestone of Wisconsin. He also described the exposures on Lake Winnipeg, and in a small bay near Big Swamp Point.

Authorof Report of a Geological Survey of Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota (Philadelphia, 1852).


Pioneers and Early Citizens of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Manitoba Library Association, 1971.

Page revised: 25 November 2008

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society. We acknowledge that the collection contains both reputable and disreputable people. All are worth remembering as a lesson to future generations.

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