Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Alexander Russell “Alex” Paterson (1882-1958)


Born near Glasgow, Scotland in February 1882, son of James Paterson (1853-?) Grace Paterson (1854-?), he earned a Masters degree at Glasgow University and worked as a student teacher before moving with his family to Canada in 1906. He arrived at Winnipeg in 1907, first working at the P&B chain stores before taking ownership of the Portage Avenue at Beverly Street location. On 12 June 1912, he married Ethel May Davidson (c1892-1974) at Winnipeg and had three sons: Alexander Russell “Alex” Paterson (1920-2001), James Paterson, and Edward “Ed” Paterson.

He returned to teaching in 1926, working in rural Manitoba schools until 1932 when a growing family and limited teaching income prompted a career change. He opened Paterson’s Farm Produce on Lilac Street, later moving to the corner of Lilac and Corydon Avenue before relocating to 807 Corydon Avenue. He continued in the grocery business until 1938, when he resumed teaching at Headingley School (1944-1946), Grosse Isle School (1946-1948, Principal), Lac du Bonnet School (?-?), and Oak Point School (1954-1955, Principal), after which he retired.

He died at his Headingley residence on 22 December 1958 and was buried in the Chapel Lawn Memorial Gardens.


1911 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.

Marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Paterson - Simons vows are made at Headingley,” Winnipeg Free Press, 1 July 1953, page 12.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 23 December 1958, page 22.

“It happened here [Green grocer Paterson a philosopher too - 1934],” by Edith Paterson, Winnipeg Free Press, 29 December 1973, page 82.

Obituary [Ethel May Paterson], Winnipeg Free Press, 3 July 1974, page 36.

Obituary [Alexander Russel Paterson], Winnipeg Free Press, 16 August 2001, page C8.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.

Page revised: 29 October 2016

Memorable Manitobans

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