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The Architectural-Historical Survey, Part 2

by Norman C. H. Russell

MHS Transactions, Series 3, Number 26, 1969-70 season

MHS Transactions were originally published by the Manitoba Historical Society on the above date. We make online versions available as a free, public service. As an historical document, Transactions may contain language that is no longer in common use and which may offend some readers. They should not be construed to represent the views of today’s Manitoba Historical Society.

This online version was prepared using Optical Character Recognition software so that spelling and punctuation errors may have occurred inadvertently. If you find any such errors, please inform us, indicating the document name and error.

Please direct all inquiries to webmaster@mhs.mb.ca.

The first illustrated review of the Architectural-Historical Survey of Manitoba was presented by Mr. Russell at the meeting of the society held in Brandon on 10 February 1968. A reference to this presentation appears in the Transactions, Series III, Number 24, 1967-1968, and a selection of the photographs is in the Winter 1969 issue of Manitoba Pageant, Volume XIV, No. 2, Whole Number 39.

As an introduction to the slides in Part II of the Architectural-Historical Survey, Mr. Russell quoted extracts from a paper presented to the Manitoba Historical Society in 1963 by Mr. J. Friesen as follows:

Prior to 1870 settlement was confined mainly to the river lots along the Red and Assiniboine rivers. By 1871 Manitoba had been well advertised in Ontario and those who undertook the difficult and slow move to Red River began to occupy the prairie and parklands in the Stonewall, Prairie Grove and Springfield areas. Very few settlers were willing to homestead on the open prairies, for lack of wood and running water.

Emerson became the dispersal point for settlers pushing west. Trails from the Kildonans toward Shoal Lake gave rise to settlements such as Grassmere, Argyle and Woodlands. Immigrants followed the North Branch of the Saskatchewan Trail and established settlements such as Westbourne and Woodside. Beginning in 1877 settlers discovered that south of the Assiniboine River the lands above the escarpments were fertile and better drained than those lands in the valley and had a considerable growth of trees. This gave rise to settlements such as Darlingford, Somerset, Snowflake, Beaconsfield, Crystal City, Clearwater, and Swan Lake.

Traffic along the Assiniboine River called attention to the lands adjacent to the valley. From points of debarkation along the river, settlers proceeded to the Rapid City area, to the area surrounding the Brandon Hills as well as Minnedosa and Birtle. In 1881 settlement in more or less direct relation to the North and South Saskatchewan Trails appeared, giving rise to Wellwood, Oberon, Osprey, Neepawa and Eden.

In 1882-1887 immigration was at a low ebb. These were years of depression, of severe frost damage to crops and of drought. There remained areas of empty land in the southwestern portion of the province. There were the scantily settled wet lands between Morris and Carman, and the sandy lands along the Assiniboine. The largest area of relatively unoccupied land was in the southeast where poor soil and poor drainage effectively retarded settlement.

In 1874 group settlements such as the first Mennonites appeared, and French settlers from Quebec and Massachusetts settled in Letellier, St. Pierre, St. Malo, Ste. Anne and Ile des Chenes. Mennonites also moved into the area west of Red River toward the Pembina Hills. Icelanders in 1875 began settling along the west shore of Lake Winnipeg.

This is a thumbnail sketch of how Manitoba was settled prior to 1890. The specific development of Winnipeg between 1872 and 1892 is shown in the following table:

1872

1880

1892

Population

500

6,178

30,000

Number of buildings

50

1,000

6,000

Business houses

10

65

400

Number of factories

0

16

45

Churches

4

8

26

Schools

2

5

19

Banks

1

4

16

Newspapers

2

4

16

Miles of sidewalks

0

20

122

Graded streets

1

10

85

Paved streets

0

0

20

Sewers

0

2

22

Water mains

0

0

20

Gas mains

0

0

11

Miles of street railway (horse)

0

0

9

Miles of street railway (electric)

0

0

13

Telephone subscribers

0

0

781

Value of city property

$500,000

$4,200,000

$24,000,000

Bank capital

1,000,000

10,000,000

40,000,000

Post office collections and delivery

100,000

900,000

8,000,000

Value of local improvements

0

100,000

2,000,000

From the developments in Winnipeg, as itemized in the foregoing table, a division of architectural-historical periods may be made which has valid application to both urban and rural areas. Buildings which were built by 1880 (90 years ago) may be classified as historical. Those built between 1880-1895 may be classified as the products of the expanding era in which Winnipeg grew at a rapid rate.

The following slides are of buildings which were built during these three periods. They are listed in chronological order and are grouped according to localities.

Location

Site

Built

Winnipeg

Upper Fort Garry Gate

1835

St. James Anglican Church

1849

Seven Oaks House

1851

Ross House

1853

Kildonan Presbyterian Church

1854

Redwood Brewery and Malt House

1874

St. Mary’s Cathedral

1880

Winnipeg Hotel

1881

Manitoba Free Press

1882

154 Princess Street

1882

Government House

1883

Holy Trinity Anglican Church

1884

Leland Hotel

1884

Empire Hotel

1884

Fortune Block

1892

King George Hotel

1892

Vulcan Iron Works

1892

Rosh Pina Synagogue

1892

Salvation Army Citadel

1895

Masonic Temple

1895

Hugh John Macdonald residence

1895

Alexander Black residence

1895

Wesley College

1896

Birks Building

1911

Whitla Building

1900

Isbister School

1898

Somerset School

1901

Fort Garry Court

1902

Avenue Building

1904

Canadian Pacific Station

1904

Manitoba Club

1905

St. Luke’s Anglican Church

1905

Union Bank Building

1906

Royal Alexandra Hotel

1906

Nanton Building

1909

McArthur Building

1909

Trust and Loan Building

1910

Bank of Nova Scotia

1910

Canadian Imperial Bank

1912

Electric Railway Building

1912

Great West Permanent Building

1912

Paris Building

1913

Bank of Montreal

1913

Red River

Lower Fort Garry

1831

St. Andrew’s Anglican Church

1845

St. Andrews Rectory

1853

St. Peter’s Anglican Church (Dynevor)

1853

Miss Davis’ School

1858

William Scott residence

1858

St. Clement’s Anglican Church

1860

Kennedy House

1870

Little Britain Presbyterian Church

1874

St. Boniface

Grey Nuns’ House

1846

Archbishop’s residence

1864

Hospice Tache

1882

Poplar Point

St. Anne’s of the Poplars Anglican Church

1858

Ste. Anne’s

Hudson’s Bay Store

1872

Dominion City

McKerchar residence

1874

Methodist Church

1879

Presbyterian Church

1880

Macdonald

Lawrence Ferris residence

1875

Emerson

Custom House and Jail

1878

William Fairbanks residence

1880

McCarther residence

1884

George Pocock residence

1890

Grunthal

Hoffen residence

1878

Thornhill

Boarding House

1879

Shazenfeld

J. B. Karenfloffen residence

1878

Lorette

William Lagimodiere residence

1880

Dugald

School

1880

Kronstal

Nichol residence

1880

Neufeld home and granary

1890

Stonewall

Church of the Ascension (Anglican)

1882

Whitemouth

Wardrope residence

1884

Brandon

City Hall

1890

Merchants Bank Building

1890

Post Office

1890

Gretna

A. N. Smith residence

1890

See also:

Photographs from an Historical-Architectural Survey
Manitoba Pageant, Volume 12, Number 2, Winter 1967

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Architectural Survey of Rural Manitoba (1964-1968)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Architectural Survey of Winnipeg (1970-1971)

Page revised: 11 January 2013

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