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Memorable Manitobans: Edmund Marter Wood (1858-1936)

Lawyer, civil servant.

Born at Brantford, Ontario on 20 April 1858, son of Edmund Burke Wood and Jane Augusta Marter (?-1925), he was educated at Upper Canada College and came to Winnipeg in 1874. He studied law with the firm of Bain and Blanchard, and was admitted to the Manitoba Bar in 1880. He practiced law for a time in partnership with S. C. Biggs. One-time solicitor for the City of Winnipeg, in 1890 he was appointed by James A. Smart the first Deputy Municipal Commissioner for the Province of Manitoba, under L. W. Coutlee. He served in the position for 42 years, having served under the Greenway, Macdonald, Roblin, Norris and Bracken governments. In a newspaper interview conducted at the time of his retirement in early 1931, he said:

... that among the things in which he took the greatest pride were the part he played in the extension of the Province’s boundaries during the Roblin administration, his work in establishing the Ninette sanatorium and his work in preparing legislation which forms a substantial part of the statutes of Manitoba. Thirteen acts of the province were prepared by himself, Mr. Wood said. These were the Railway Taxation Act, the Manitoba Election Act, the first Motor Vehicle Act, the Municipal Audit Act, the Land Drainage Act, the Public Health Act, the original Sanatorium Act, the Good Roads Act, the Hail Insurance Act, Unoccupied Territory Act, Fair Wage Act, and Tax Commission Act, and in addition, annual amendments to the Municipal and Assessment Acts.

He was married twice, first to Georgiana Gove (c1858-1921), with whom he had two sons: Edmund Burke Wood (1881-?) and Frank Andrews “Bob” Wood (1889-?). On 10 November 1923, he married Nina Emily Macdonald (?-?) at Winnipeg. They lived in a suite in the Royal Alexandra Hotel until his death.

He died at Winnipeg on 26 January 1936 and was buried in Elmwood Cemetery.

See also:

Métis Lands in Manitoba by Gerhard Ens
Manitoba History, Number 5, Spring 1983

Edmund Marter Wood, Dictionary of Canadian Biography.


Obituary [Georgianna Gove Wood], Manitoba Free Press, 2 June 1921, page 16.

Western Municipal News, 1931, page 8.

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

“E. M. Wood, former Deputy Municipal Commissioner dies,” Winnipeg Free Press, 28 January 1936, page 8.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 27 March 2019

Memorable Manitobans

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