Memorable Manitobans: George Thomas Chapman (1861-1940)
Market gardener, municipal official.
Born at Corby, North Hants, England on 22 February 1861, he emigrated to Canada in 1882, settling near Winnipeg in what would become the Charleswood suburb. On 27 June 1889, he married Catherine Mary Bourke (1862-1947), granddaughter of John Palmer Bourke, in the Old St. James Anglican Church. They went to live in a log cabin on the south side of the Assinibione River in what is now Charleswood. There, they had seven children: Walter Bourke Chapman (b 1890), Ada Blanche Chapman (b 1892), Charles Arthur Chapman (b 1895), Annie Flora Chapman (b 1897), George Thomas Chapman, Bertha Mable “Dossie” Chapman (b 1900), and Alfred Joseph Chapman (b 1903).
He was the proprietor of a successful market garden and nursery business, winning many horticultural competitions. He was Chairman of the first school board in St. James and, for several years, was a member of the Assiniboia council. He was the Reeve of Assiniboia (1909-1911) but stepped down and, in 1913, became Reeve of the newly created Rural Municipality of Charleswood. He served in the position (with the exception of the years 1914 to 1916) from 1913 to 1926, when he retired. He donated the site for St. Mary’s Anglican Church in Charleswood, to which he was a life-long adherent.
He died at Charleswood on 30 December 1940 and was buried in the St. James Anglican Cemetery. He is commemorated by Chapman School in Charleswood.
Marriage registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
“Assiniboia,” Manitoba Free Press, 20 December 1911, page 14.
“Charleswood pioneer dies,” Winnipeg Free Press, 8 April 1947, page 7.
“George T. Chapman, Charleswood, dies,” Winnipeg Free Press, 31 December 1940, page 2.
Photos & Fragments of Charleswood History: A Collection of Historic Photographs of Our Community and the Stories They Tell by Len Van Roon & Verna Van Roon, Charleswood Historical Society, 2003.
We thank George E. Chapman, grandson of George T. Chapman, for information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 3 September 2014