Historic Sites of Manitoba: North End Mennonite Brethren Church / European Meat and Sausage Building (533 Burrows Avenue, Winnipeg)
The North End Mennonite Brethren Church began as a small gathering at Winnipeg in 1911, formally organized in 1913, and worshiped in a chapel at the northwest corner of Burrows Avenue and Andrews Street. In 1917, the congregation commissioned local architect Max Zev Blankstein to design a substructure as their new place of worship and community. The basement was built with expansion in mind, as was not uncommon for other churches at the time, while both allowing a dedicated place for gathering and permitting the saving of funds for completion of the envisioned top-side building at a late date. The brick and masonry foundation was completed at a cost of around $4,500.
By the late 1920s, rather than complete their semi-finished church, they opted to redirect funds raised towards the construction of a new and larger venue at 621 College Avenue. In 1929, the premises were then sold at public auction under The Church Lands Act. Since then, the foundation has transformed from a place to meet into a place for meat, being operated as a few butcher shops and sausage manufacturers including the Warsaw Kosher Sausage Manufacturing Company (1930s), Zion Kosher Sausage Manufacturing Company (early 1940s), Smith Corned Beef & Sausage Manufacturing Company (c1948-late 1950s), and the European Meat & Sausage Company since 1961.
Photos & Coordinates
City of Winnipeg Building Permit 376/1917, City of Winnipeg Archives.
“Building permits for 1917 over half-million,” Manitoba Free Press, 24 May 1917, page 8.
““The Church lands Act” - Sale of Church Lands,” Winnipeg Tribune, 20 September 1929, page 21.
“Permits issued today for dozen new dwellings,” Winnipeg Tribune, 15 October 1929, page 3.
“Burglars enter kosher factory, get little loot,” Winnipeg Tribune, 21 October 1930, page 3.
“Two business places and delivery man are robbed,” Manitoba Free Press, 8 December 1930, page 1.
“Mennonites to hold Bible-reading session,” Winnipeg Tribune, 12 December 1930, page 3.
“Mennonite Brethren have new church,” Manitoba Free Press, 13 December 1930, page 30.
“Night raider gets cash ---pants, too,” Winnipeg Tribune, 26 September 1939, page 13.
“Three 19-year-olds sentenced for auto thefts and break-ins,” Winnipeg Free Press, 15 June 1948, page 3.
“Grand opening today [Congratulations to Samuel's ...],” Winnipeg Free Press, 18 February 1950, page 47.
“Notice - City of Winnipeg Zoning Board,” Winnipeg Free Press, 3 November 1960, page 49.
“Evidence of metro expansion,” Winnipeg Tribune, 27 March 1962, page C30.
Elmwood Mennonite Brethren Church, by I. W. Redekopp and Richard D. Thiessen, Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online, March 2022.
Henderson’s Winnipeg and Brandon Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.
“Pioneering an urban environment: The beginning of the Mennonite Brethren Church in Winnipeg” by Abe Dueck, Mennonite Historian, Volume 33, Number 1, March 2007, pages 1, 8.
Biographical Dictionary of Architects in Canada, 1800-1950 by Robert G. Hill, Toronto.
We thank Gordon Goldsborough, Jordan Makichuk, and George Penner for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.
Page revised: 14 May 2023