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Manitoba History No. 90

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Memorable Manitobans: Samuel James Rothwell (1868-1924)

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Samuel James Rothwell
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Born at Ferguson’s Falls, Ontario on 25 July 1868, son of John Rothwell and Eleanor Warren, he attended Perth Collegiate Institute then taught school for a year. He then attended the Dutton Collegiate Institute before becoming a student of the University of Toronto, from which he graduated in 1891, with honors in mathematics and philosophy. Later that year he came to Winnipeg and studied law for 18 months in the firm of Perdue and Robinson. He then joined the firm of Hough and Campbell, and was called to the Manitoba Bar in 1895.

In May 1900 he joined W. E. Perdue in a partnership under the firm name of Perdue and Rothwell, which continued until June 1903 when Perdue was made a judge, after which Rothwell took in T. H. Johnson as a partner. Four years later, they took on their former law student H. A. Bergman as a partner. Rothwell served as a solicitor for the Hudson’s Bay Company, Lord Strathcona, London Canadian and Loan Company, Toronto Mortgage Company, and National Cash Register Company. In 1916, he was made a King’s Counsel.

On 15 June 1898, he married Kate Whinnerery at Winnipeg. They had five children: Dora May Rothwell (b 1902), Lucille Eleanor Rothwell (b 1904), James Gerald Rothwell (b 1908), William Stanley Rothwell (b 1909), and Keith Whinnerery Rothwell (b 1912). He was a member of the Knights of Pythias, Carleton Club, Canadian Club, and St. Luke’s Anglican Church. He served as a Bencher for the Law Society of Manitoba from 1916 to 1924.

He died at his Winnipeg home, 73 Spence Street, on 6 February 1924 and was buried in the St. John’s Cemetery.


The Story of Manitoba by F. H. Schofield, Winnipeg: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1913.

Birth and death registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Nine new K.C.’s,” Manitoba Free Press, 24 May 1916, page 5.

“S. J. Rothwell, eminent local barrister, dead,” Winnipeg Tribune, 7 February 1924, page 3.

“S. J. Rothwell, leading Winnipeg lawyer, dead,” Manitoba Free Press, 7 February 1924, page 1.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 2 February 2017

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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