Manitoba Historical Society
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Historic Sites of Manitoba: Singer Sewing Machine Building (424 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg)

This three-storey brick and Tyndall stone building on Portage Avenue in Winnipeg was designed by the local architectural firm of Northwood and Chivers and built in 1929 by the construction firm of Fraser and MacDonald for the Singer Sewing Machine Company of New York. Measuring 22 feet by 114 feet, the building was constructed at a cost of about $84,000. The main floor held a retail area at the front while the machine area and work room were at the rear. The second floor held washrooms in the middle with a “Purchasers’ Demonstration Room” in the front and a “Manufacturing Trade Department” area at the rear. The third floor was given to a large general office and smaller private office at the rear.

Occupants of the main floor have been Thomas Cook Travel Agency (1981-1989) and Cristall Opticians (1990 to present).

The building became a municipally-designated heritage site (2020).

Singer Sewing Machine Building

Singer Sewing Machine Building (October 2019)
Source: George Penner

Singer Sewing Machine Building

Singer Sewing Machine Building (January 2023)
Source: Jordan Makichuk

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.89143, W97.14892
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Manitoba Business: Northwood and Chivers / Northwood Chivers and Casey

Manitoba Business: Fraser and MacDonald

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Singer Sewing Machine Building (590 Main Street, Winnipeg)


City of Winnipeg Building Permit 4755/1929, City of Winnipeg Archives.

“Singer Sewing Machine Company to build here,” Winnipeg Tribune, 7 September 1929, page 26.

“Store, office structure will cost $84,000,” Winnipeg Tribune, 5 October 1929, page 28.

“Singer Sewing Machine Co. In fine new home,” Winnipeg Tribune, 1 April 1930, page 8.

Singer Sewing Machine Building, 424 Portage Avenue by Murray Peterson, City of Winnipeg, Historical Buildings and Resources Committee, May 2019.

We thank George Penner for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Jordan Makichuk and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 28 February 2023

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