Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Joseph Duncan “Joe” Robertson (1913-2007)

Civil servant.

Born on the family farm in the Fork River area on 8 August 1913, son of John Dunbar “Jack” Robertson (1873-?) and Violet Hunter (1884-1966), at the age of 14 he went to Moose Lake to trap with his father and brother from 1927 to 1937. He operated a fur trading store at Cedar Lake and a fish-buying shed at Moose Lake from 1937 to 1943, then he served in the Royal Canadian Air Force from 1943 to 1946. Upon returning from military service, he joined the Manitoba Government and had a distinguished career in the Conservation Branch of the Department of Natural Resources, serving at Cranberry Portage, Winnipeg, Brandon, and Dauphin (1967-1976). In 1976, he retired as Regional Supervisor for the Western Region of Manitoba.

He was a founding member of the Manitoba Archaeological Society and a founding member and Chairman of its Dauphin Chapter. He was also a founding member, President and Director of the Fort Dauphin Museum. He was a member of the New York Explorers Club, Rotary International, Manitoba Wildlife Federation, Dauphin Fish and Wildlife Association and the Fort Dauphin Snowshoe Club. On 30 September 1939, he married Kathleen May Wilson (1922-1994) at The Pas and they had four children.

In recognition of his community service, he was inducted into the Order of Canada (2007). He also received a Canadian Outdoorsman of the Year Award for Outstanding Conservation Achievement from the Canadian Wildlife Federation, the Manitoba Premier’s Volunteer Service Award, and the Rotary Service Above Self Award.

He died at Dauphin on 7 October 2007 and was buried in the Dauphin Riverside Cemetery.


Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

1921 Canada census, Ancestry.

Obituary [Kathleen May Robertson], Winnipeg Free Press, 1 October 1994, page 39.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 22 October 2007.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 24 January 2021

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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