Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Frederick Walter S. “Fritz” Sparling (1877-1947)


Born in Ontario on 5 October 1877, son of Joseph Walter Sparling and Susannah Mary Weir Kerr (1850-1915), he came to Winnipeg with his parents in 1888, and was educated at the Winnipeg Central School and the Winnipeg Collegiate Institute. In May 1896, after graduating with a BA (Mathematics) from Wesley College, he began articling in law with J. A. M. AIkins. Three years later he graduated from the Manitoba Law School.

He worked in the Aikins law firm from 1900 to 1906 then joined William Frederick Hull and his brother, John Kerr Sparling, in the law firm of Hull, Sparling, and Sparling. After the death of Hull and Sparling, the firm was reorganized as Sparling, Bowles, Stewart, and Pybus.

On 30 September 1914, he married Gratia Julia Newman (1890-1969, daughter of Frederick Leslie Newman) of Portage la Prairie. They had three children: Frederick Newman Sparling (1916-?), Lois Sparling (1923-2004, wife of Robert G. Fraser), and Laura Ethel Sparling.

He died of a heart attack at his Winnipeg home, 70 Niagara Street, on 6 January 1947 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.


1901 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.

Birth, marriage, and death registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“F. W. S. Sparling, barrister, dies of heart attack,” Winnipeg Free Press, 6 January 1947, page 10.

“Laura Ethel Sparling weds William Cooper Gardner,” Winnipeg Tribune, 4 July 1947, page 8.

Obituary [Gratia Julia Sparling], Winnipeg Free Press, 22 January 1969, page 40.

Obituary [Lois Merrill Fraser], Winnipeg Free Press, 24 August 2004.

Obituary [Laura Ethel Gardner], Winnipeg Free Press, 8 July 2017.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

We thank Linda Dietrick for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 8 June 2021

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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