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Historic Sites of Manitoba: Dominion Post Office Building / Portage City Hall (55 Saskatchewan Avenue West, Portage la Prairie)

Link to:
Postmasters | Photos & Coordinates | Sources

The former Dominion Post Office in Portage la Prairie was designed by Thomas L. Fuller, one of Canada’s foremost architects and the designer of Canada’s first Parliament Buildings. The building is an example of Fuller’s interpretation of the Romanesque Revival style. The 2½-storey hammer-faced limestone building features a steep mansard roof and central gable. Originally, the ground floor housed the Post Office while the upper floor held the Customs and Revenue Office. Political controversy in Ottawa delayed construction, but the building was finally opened in 1898. In 1920, an addition was made on the south side. The building became the Portage la Prairie City Hall in 1960, when a new post office opened on the next block along Saskatchewan Avenue, and the old building has also provided space over the years for the Magistrate’s Court, Youth Court, RCMP detachment (with its jail cells), library, and arts centre.

A plaque was erected beside the building in 1983 by the Historic Sites and Monuments Advisory Board of Canada. It commemorated the building as a representative of small, urban post offices designed by Thomas Fuller, and the fact that it was largely intact and had not undergone major exterior renovation. It is a municipally designated historic site.

Postmasters

Period

Postmasters

1871-1872

Charles House

1872-1877

Charles Mair (1838-1927)

1877-1879

George Bates

1879-1880

Charles Hay (1843-1924)

1880-1912

William White Miller (1846-1912)

1912-1913

William Ralph Taylor (1863-1913)

1913-1936

Edgar L. Burns (1868-1943)

1936-1951

Albert John Mills

1951-1956

Thomas Chisholm Forbes

1956-1963

James William Cook

1963-1965

F. C. Meadwell

1965

J. A. Brydon

1965-1966

F. C. Meadwell

1966-1981

James Joseph Mulligan

Photos & Coordinates

Portage la Prairie Post Office

Portage la Prairie Post Office (circa 1908)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough, 2012-0167

The former Portage la Prairie Post Office

The former Portage la Prairie Post Office (June 2017)
Source: George Penner

The former Portage la Prairie Post Office

The former Portage la Prairie Post Office (June 2017)
Source: George Penner

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.97293, W98.29011
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Municipally Designated Historic Sites

Sources:

Portage la Prairie Dominion Post Office Building, 97 Saskatchewan Avenue E, Portage la Prairie, Manitoba Historic Resources Branch.

Post Offices and Postmasters, Library and Archives Canada.

This page was prepared by Tim Worth, George Penner, and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 17 October 2020

Historic Sites of Manitoba

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