Memorable Manitobans: Montague Aldous (1850-1946)
Born at Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island on 30 September 1850, son of the Honourable John Aldous, he was educated at Prince of Wales College (Charlottetown) and Bowdoin College (Maine). He came to Winnipeg in 1874, in the employ of the Dominion Government (Surveys), where he helped to establish the system of meridians across the prairies. He retired from Government work in 1882, and entered the service of the Hudson’s Bay Company in charge of their surveys for several years; later in charge of their Land Department. He resigned from the HBC in 1907. He served as President of the Association of Manitoba Land Surveyors (1888-1892).
In 1882, he married Mary Agnes Bate (c1860-1924), daughter of Sir Henry Bate of Ottawa, with whom he had seven children: Claude Aldous (1883-?), Ethel Aldous (1883-?), Gerald Bate Aldous, Allen Aldous (1886-?), Henry Aldous (1888-?), John Aldous (1889-?), and Doris Thornton Aldous (1892-?). He served as President of the Manitoba Club (1909-1912) and Assiniboine Curling Club (1898-1899, 1904-1905), and was a member of the St. Charles Country Club, Winnipeg Hunt Club, Conservative party, and Anglican church.
After his retirement, he lived during the winter at the Manitoba Club, summered at the Lake of the Woods, and between seasons spent time in Montreal and Barbados, where he was regarded as a “character.” Fond of curling, fast cars, golf, and sailboats, he was a huge bear of a man, 6 feet, 4 inches tall, and weighing 300 pounds.
He died at the Manitoba Club on 25 May 1946 and was buried in the St. Johns Cathedral Cemetery.
Who’s Who in Western Canada: A Biographical Dictionary of Notable Living Men and Women of Western Canada, Volume 1, edited by C. W. Parker, Vancouver: Canadian Press Association, 1911.
Pioneers and Prominent People of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Canadian Publicity Company, 1925.
Death registration [Mary Agnes Aldous], Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Association of Manitoba Land Surveyors, 1930 Annual Report.
“Montague Aldous dies in 97th year,” Winnipeg Free Press, 25 May 1946. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B9]
Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.
Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.
We thank Alan Crossin for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 11 November 2022