Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Walter J. N. Pratt (c1852-1924)


Born in England, he came to Manitoba in 1874 then returned home soon after. He came back to Manitoba the next year with his brother R. H. M. Pratt. They settled at Portage la Prairie and were the first to operated a steamboat on the Assiniboine River, between the Red River Settlement and Fort Ellice. He later moved to the Westbourne district and built the first steamboat that plied on Lake Manitoba, also operating a sawmill at Totogan. He was a candidate for the Westbourne constituency in the 1879 provincial general election. In 1896 he moved to Washington state, later going to British Columbia. In 1921 he moved to Fort Myers, Florida where he resided until his death, which occurred in May 1924. He was buried there.


“Walter Pratt, Portage Plains pioneer, dies,” Manitoba Free Press, 12 May 1924. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B8]

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 8 October 2018

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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