Memorable Manitobans: Charles John Lee (1873-1959)
Born at Eau Claire, Wisconsin on 19 January 1873, son of John Lee (1839-1916) and Angnette Isaksen (1835-1918), he came to Winnipeg in 1906 to found the North American Lumber and Supply Company, serving as its General Manager until retirement in 1947. He was responsible for establishing retail lumber yards through prairie Canada and Ontario, the first branch being opened at Rivers.
In 1897, he married Mary Annette Houghton (1869-1954) and they had three daughters: Virginia Lee (1900-1959, wife of James A. Walstrom), Charlotte Elizabeth Lee (1905-1990, wife of Harry E. Bryant), and Roberta “Bo” Lee (1914-2014, wife of Murray Turner). The family resided at 68 Kingsway. He was a member of the St. Charles Country Club and Motor Country Club.
He died at the St. Boniface Hospital on 7 June 1959 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.
1911 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.
Birth registration [Roberta Lee], Manitoba Vital Statistics.
1916 Canada census, Ancestry.
Marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Obituary [Mary Annette Lee], Winnipeg Free Press, 29 December 1954, page 22.
“Founder of lumber firm dead at 86,” Winnipeg Free Press, 8 June 1959, page 5.
Obituary [Roberta Lee Turner], Winnipeg Free Press, 7 June 2014.
Charles John Lee, FindAGrave.
We thank James Arnett for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 25 December 2022