Manitoba Historical Society
     Keeping history alive for over 144 years

Volume 36, No 5
June / July 2004


Let's Celebrate
President's Message
Dalnavert News
New Members
Centennial Farms
Margaret McWilliams Awards
Prairie Pathfinder Events
Web Site News
On the Road to Rural Museums - Part 2
Heritage News
Provincial and Municipal Historic Site Designations
The Manitoba Agricultural Hall of Fame
MHS Award Reception

125th Ceremony

This year marks the 125th Anniversary of the Manitoba Historical Society. On Thursday, June 24th we invite you to join in celebration of this milestone event in the rotunda of the Manitoba Legislative Building. The event will start at 7:00 p.m. and will be followed by light refreshments.

Since capacity is limited, we ask that you confirm your attendance by May 15. RSVP to Bill Fraser at 204-269-4639 or Carl James at 204-631-5971. Please leave a voice message if there is no answer.

President's Message

Hello Members! Those were the very first words I wrote introducing myself as the Society's newly-elected President in August 2002. It is hard to believe that two years have almost passed since I announced four goals that I hoped to achieve during my presidency:

1. To invite multi-ethnic and other similar-goaled groups and associations to work with us:

Over the past two years, the Manitoba Historical Society has worked with such ethnic groups as the Czech and Slovak community, the German community as well as the Franco-Manitoban community. Our Society has created partnerships with such organizations as the United Empire Loyalists, Heritage Canada and Heritage Winnipeg. I hope that the MHS continues these friendships and expands to others in the future as well.

2. To reach out to rural historical and cultural groups in regards to communication and cooperation:

While serving as President, the Society has made gains in contact with rural communities. Field trips to such locations as Norway House and organizing Annual General Meetings "beyond the Perimeter" are two such examples of this. To proclaim that the Manitoba Historical Society is truly a provincial body, the Society must continue the policy of trying to engage all citizens of our majestic province.

3. To make our Society familiar to all Manitobans - the general public, the media, our elected officials and most important to me, students, both high school and post-secondary:

Through the constant hard work of Councillors and Staff, the Manitoba Historical Society is increasing in recognition. TV and radio appearances as well as newspaper articles have been on the rise with more and more Manitobans becoming interested. The Society's revised and recently award-winning web site has also been a great contributor in reaching the hundreds who "hit" it each month. As Past-President, and with the Council's blessing, I promise to continue to focus on this issue in the coming months.

4. To ensure that our governments, who have been charged with the task of safeguarding our Province's rich and colourful history, actually follow through with that duty:

The MHS continues to try to influence governments to explore all options prior to demolishing important buildings and artefacts pertaining to keeping our Province's past alive. Our excellent relationship with elected officials, both at the provincial and municipal levels should always remain a long-term goal and priority.

Of course, the past two years have been extremely exciting for Council. Not only is the Manitoba Historical Society reaching its 125th year of existence, we are also witnessing the largest change to Dalnavert Museum since its original renovation. This Autumn, the long-debated Visitor Centre will open. It is the hope of many that, through the hard work of planning activities and events, the Visitor Centre will attract many people and groups for various reasons.

The idea of re-visiting the Society's Constitution is still currently in progress. Having met as a committee, its Members decided to continue reviewing it in order to present a modern, updated legal document. This should take some time, with the revamped Constitution to formally be presented to the Membership for ratification in one year.

The Society's "Quasquicentennial" celebration will take place on June 24th at the Manitoba Legislature. This will be the formal event announcing our 125 years as a Society. I strongly encourage all Members to attend this and participate in this important milestone. The evening will include speeches, stories of the Society, musical entertainment followed by a reception to celebrate the Society’s achievements. Plans have been made to make it a wonderful and memorable event.

Again, I would like to thank the Governing Council and Staff for their continued support over the past two years. I look forward to my new role as Past-President and am eager to accomplish unfinished business in regards to benefiting and promoting the Society. I would also like to thank all Members for participating in the Society's events and activities and for their continued support. I wish the new Council much success and offer incoming President, Gordon Goldsborough my ongoing involvement during his term. It truly has been an honour and a privilege to serve our Society as President.

Steven Place

Dalnavert News

We would like to thank all those who contributed items for the joint Dalnavert and Ukrainian Labour Temple Garage Sale in May. The Museum would also like to extend a special thank you to Lily Stearns and those of the Ukrainian Labour Temple for helping Dalnavert while the regular operation of Dalnavert Museum has been curtailed pending the completion of the Visitors Centre.

At the Society's 2004 Awards Reception in St. John's College the Dalnavert Volunteers were thanked for their efforts over the past year. It is quite commendable that individuals contribute their time and effort over a long period of time. This year the museum added a new category for those who had been involved with Dalnavert for thirty years. Volunteers receiving special recognition this year included: for Five Years - Stephanie Middagh; for Ten Years - Fran Coulter and Dodie Metcalfe; for Fifteen Years - Rob Inman and Liliane Puhach; for Twenty Years - Louise Beatty; for Twenty-Five Years - Joan Spencer and for Thirty Years - Betty Jo Johnston, Kathleen Campbell and Kathleen Richardson.

30-year Dalnavert Volunteers
(Click photos to enlarge)

Betty Jo Johnson

Kathleen Campbell

Kathleen Richardson

New Members

Don Finkbeiner
Norman J. Beaton
Rosemary Gill
Monique Woroniak
Robert D. McIntyre
Joanne Holland



Carol Holm
Dr. Sam Loschiavo
Donald A. Bailey
Muriel Aboul- Atta

MHS Dalnavert Visitor Centre

Anton Kirk
Joanne Holland
Fern Morris
Audrey Thompson
Muriel About-Atta
Flora E. Langton
Roslyn & Meyer Silver
Louise Beatty
Daisy Knox
Ada Allen

Ross House

Entegra Credit Union


Gordon Thomas MacDonell, a long-time MHS member, died in Winnipeg on May 17 at 96 years. He received a B.A. degree in 1927 from he University of Manitoba where he subsequently earned B.Ed and M.Ed degrees. He started his career in education as a teacher at Lundar School in 1927. Two years later he began 44 years service with Winnipeg School Division No. 1. He taught at General Wolfe Junior High School and Daniel McIntyre Collegiate and then he served in the Canadian Army in Canada and Europe during World War II. Following the war he spent six years as principal of George V School, one year as vice principal of Tec-Voc High School and 18 years as Superintendent of Secondary Schools. Gordon was active in his church and many community organizations, including the Manitoba Historical Society. In recent years his most active community involvement has been with the United Nations Association where he served as an active Board member for 20 years. MHS members will recall that even in his later years Gordon and his wife Doris regularly attended Sir John A Macdonald Dinners.

Harry Gutkin, a long-time MHS member, died in Winnipeg on May 17 at 88 years. He was a former member of the MHS Council and a Margaret McWilliams Medal Winner. He wrote several and articles and books including Journey Into Our Heritage - The Story of the Jewish People in the Canadian West (1980) and, with Mildred Gutkin, Profiles of Dissent: The Shaping of Radical Thought in the Canadian West (1997). Harry was one of the founders of the Jewish Historical Society of Western Canada and for 19 years he served as its president. In 1997, he received the Prix Manitoba Award for distinguished service in heritage preservation. He was also a graphic designer and one of the owners of the animation company Phillips, Gutkin and Associates (PGA) which was well known in the 1950s and 1960s for producing animated TV commercials.

Centennial Farms

Click here for an up-to-date list of Centennial Farms.

Margaret McWilliams Awards

Click here for an up-to-date list of McWilliams Award winners.

Prairie Pathfinder Events

(1) On Saturday June 26th Prairie Pathfinders Inc. is organizing a historic walking tour of Emerson. Our tour guide will be Wayne Arsney. We will be walking about 14 km over a 4-5 hour period with a break for lunch. If you would like to attend please see our web site for more information and a registration form or call us at (204) 774-0190. $15. including lunch.

(2) Consider joining the Prairie Pathfinders on July 9th for a scenic bus tour to the Duck Mountain Provincial Park (from 7:00 am - 11:00 p.m.). We will hike at Blue Lakes and have time to see the view from Mt Baldy. After the hike we will have a guided tour of the Negrych homestead which is generally recognized as one of North America's most impressive folk sites. A must see for anyone interested in history and architecture. We will end the tour with supper at Riverside Colony on the Arden Ridge. Cost is $72. You must register before June 11th. For details see our web site ( or phone (204)774-0190.

Web site news

There have been numerous additions to the web site as a result of our ongoing digitization project. The full text of the Transactions, a series of articles published by the Society between 1882 and 1980, are now nearly all online. In January, we applied for a provincial Heritage Grant to could continue the project. We learned recently that the grant was approved with sufficient funds to employ a student full-time for most of the summer. Among the documents to be digitized include Manitoba Pageant, the Society's popular history articles published between 1956 and 1980. As time permits, early articles from Manitoba History will also be digitized.

MLA President Linwood Delong presents Web Site of the Year award
to Gordon Goldsborough, MHS Webmaster
(Click photo to enlarge)

The Manitoba Library Association selected our site to receive its "Web Site of the Year" in the non-profit category. The award recognized that the site contains "information that is unique, relevant, or helpful in such a way as to encourage users to visit again." The award was presented by MLA President Linwood DeLong at the MLA annual general meeting at the University of Winnipeg on 21 May.

On the Road to Rural Museums - Part 2

Click here for this feature on the excellent museums of rural Manitoba, as explored by Maria Zbigniewicz.

Heritage News

Mountain Road Homecoming and Church Centennial will be held in the Mountain Community Hall, south of Riding Mountain National Park, on July 24 & 25. Opening ceremonies at 2:00 p.m. include a cairn dedication. On July 24 there will be displays in the hall and a beer garden on the hall grounds at 4:00, a barbecue supper at 5:30, and a dance at 8:30. On July 25 there will be a homecoming breakfast from 8:00 a.m. to 11 a.m., Divine Liturgy at 3:00 and dinner at 5:00. Phone 1-204-636-2418 or 1-204-966-3838 for prices and other information

The Fort Garry Historical Society launched its new book, Fort Garry Remembered II on June 3. The book continues with more interesting stories on life in the former municipality of Fort Garry. The price is $12. For more information phone 284-6567.

The Forks National Historic Site of Canada is presenting a program,: "Beaver Tails and River Trails" (guided interpretive tour) from July 2 to August 29, Tuesday to Sunday at 11:00 a.m. Join costumed Parks Canada interpreters as they recount the 6,000 year evolution of The Forks and Winnipeg from a meeting place to a booming metropolis. Using reproduced artifacts, anecdotes, historical photos, maps and landmarks, as well as the site's scenic vistas, the history of this national historic site will unfold. English or French. 1 hour. Booked programs are available at other times. Another walking tour is "Raising Spirits". An interpretive slide show, "A Snapshot of the Forks" is also offered.Please call. The cost is $3.00 for adults (17-64), $2.25 for seniors (65+), $1.50 for youths (6-16), free for children under 6, $7.50 for families (2 adults, 3 children). Educational groups cost $1.00 per person. Forty people maximum (30 maximum for educational groups) can be accommodated per tour. To book or for more information, please contact The Forks National Historic Site of Canada, 401-25 Forks Market Road, Winnipeg at (204) 983-6757, fax to (204) 983-2221, email to or web

The Annual Canada Day Fish Fry (all you can eat pickerel) takes place on July 1 at Delta Interpretive Centre at Delta Beach, just west of Delta Waterfowl Station at the end of Highway 240 on Cherry Avenue. Come any time between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. All proceeds will help to support the work of the Delta Beach History Initiative. For info, call (204) 857-8637.

The Manitoba All Nations Cultural Society Inc (MANCS) is preparing for a Treaty 2 Cultural Celebration which will be held on August 21st and 22nd 2004 in Bird's Hill Provincial Park. This year will mark 133 years since the first signing of the treaty on August 21, 1871. The celebration is a program filled with a variety of events that promote culture and awareness through song, dance and prayer. No admission charges are planned, but MANCS is looking for financial support from individuals, foundations, public and private corporations, organizations and government. For more information phone (204) 233-9354.

The St. Vital Historical Society Inc. and the Old St. Vital Biz invite you to the Annual Sidewalk Sale on Saturday, June 19 at locations surrounding the junction of St. Mary's and St. Anne's. Included are displays, entertainment, refreshments and tours of Deanna Durban House. Several books relating to the history of St. Vital are available at the St. Vital Historical Society office, Room 17, 900 St. Mary's Road. Phone Hugh R. Kennedy at 256-4003 for more information.

Eriksdale celebrates its centennial this year. In 1904 Swedish pioneer Jonas Erikson built a log cabin immediately north of the present village of the Eriksdale site. The village is now part of the R.M. of Eriksdale on the western side of Lake Manitoba. Colourful murals and a creamery museum have become tourist attractions to the community.

The Manitoba Agricultural Museum at Austin celebrates its 50th anniversary with the Threshermen's Reunion from July 28 to 31. For information contact Sandra Head, (204) 637-2534 or email

The Carillon reports that James Penner has been appointed executive director of the Mennonite Heritage Museum in Steinbach as the museum celebrates its 40th anniversary. Penner says that two groups should be especially recognized this year, the founders who had the vision to establish and build it and the volunteers past and present who are "at the heart" of the museum. He replaces Sue Barkman who has taken a position with the new Human Rights Museum in Winnipeg.

On April 3, the Faculty of Science at the University of Manitoba celebrated its centenary with a banquet at the Fort Garry Hotel. Highlights of the banquet included a speech by one of the original professors, Dr. Reginald Buller (played by Brandon University drama professor Jim Forsythe), transfer of Buller's personal papers to the U of M Archives and presentation of the MHS Centennial Organization Award to the University of Manitoba.

Provincial and Municipal Historic Site Designations

The Historic Resources Branch of Manitoba CUlture, Heritage & Tourism is pleased to report the following heritage site designations under The Heritage Resources Act for the period April 1, 2003 to March 31, 2004.

Provincial Sites

Site Name






Commonwealth Air Training Plan Hangar





16 July 2003

Ralph Connor House

54 West Gate




10 March 2004

Mowbray Schoolhouse





15 March 2004

Municipal Sites

Site Name






Strathclair CPR Station

33 Main Street



RM of Strathclair

9 April 2003

Netley River Cottage




RM of St. Andrews

22 April 2003

Rodmond Roblin House


Carman area


RM of Dufferin

26 May 2003

McPhail House


Forrest area


RM of Elton

9 June 2003

Shillinglaw House

302 Russell Street



City of Brandon

23 June 2003

Carman CNR Station

38 Centre Avenue West



Town of Carman

26 June 2003

Scott House


Eden area


RM of Lansdowne

8 July 2003

Ledwyn Pioneer Park


Riverton area


RM of Bifrost

10 September 2003

Johnston Estate

547 - 13th Street



City of Brandon

6 October 2003

Willow Plain School




RM of Hanover

17 December 2003

St. Helen's Anglican School




RM of Grahamdale

17 December 2003

Yerex House


Neepawa area


RM of Rosedale

13 February 2004

The Manitoba Agricultural Hall of Fame

The Manitoba Agricultural Hall of Fame Inc. held their Annual General Meeting at the Keystone Centre in Brandon on April 15th, 2004. The Hall of Fame is pleased to announce that eight outstanding individuals who have made a significant contribution to agriculture in their respective communities, the province, and in some instances nationally and internationally will be inducted into the Hall of Fame. A formal induction ceremony will take place in July of this year to recognize these individuals.

Charles Balmer of Elie, founder of Valmar Airflo Inc., has spent the past 53 years as an inventor and designer of farm machinery.

Bruce Campbell has made significant contributions to the livestock industry in Manitoba through his vision and entrepreneurial spirit.

Robert Oliver Douglas’s management and negotiation skills in policy development benefited the Manitoba Federation of Agriculture and Co-operation (MFAC), the Manitoba Farm Bureau (MFB), the Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP) and many youth benefited from his guidance at Camp Wannakumbac.

Daryl Kraft (deceased), a professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics at the University of Manitoba, dedicated his life to understanding and providing sound advice on every aspect of agriculture.

Marie Salway (deceased) used her training in Home Economics and Public Health Education to initiate much needed community programs throughout Manitoba and Canada. Her book, Butter Side Up - Common Sense Solutions to Critical Family Issues, was published in 1995.

Alex and Bette Scott were committed to making organic farming work in the production of crops and livestock. They provided the impetus for the formation of the Organic Producers of Manitoba (OPAM) in 1988, and have been actively involved since its inception.

Dr. Leonard Hylary Shebeski was head of the Department of Plant Science at the University of Manitoba and then Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture. He earned national and international acclaim for his initiative in spearheading the development of triticale, and was a key player in the development of Glenlea, Canada's first utility wheat.

MHS Award Reception

The first of what is anticipated to be an annual MHS awards reception was held at St. John's College, on the Fort Garry campus of the University of Manitoba, on 16 April. The event, which drew an audience of about 100 people, included presentations of several awards over the course of the afternoon. Following opening remarks by MHS Past-President Jim Blanchard, Gordon Goldsborough announced the first recipients of our new Centennial Organization Awards, given to non-profit groups, clubs, and congregations which have operated continuously in Manitoba for 100 years or more. The recipients (and their years of founding) included the Manitoba Beekeepers' Association (1903), the University of Manitoba (1877), Brandon University (1899), the University of Winnipeg (1871), CAA Manitoba (1904), Grand Lodge of Manitoba AF & AM (1875), and Starbuck United Church (1886). Profiles of each recipient can be found on our web site (

Centennial Organizations
(Click photo to enlarge)

Executive Director Lorne Peters,
Manitoba Beekeepers' Association (center)

President Emoke Szathmáry,
University of Manitoba (left)

Vice-President (Academic) Patrick Deane,
University of Winnipeg (right)

President Jerry Kruk,
CAA Manitoba

Grand Secretary C. Rae Haldane-Wilsone,
Grand Lodge of Manitoba (right)

Council Chairman Len Goldsborough,
Starbuck United Church (right)

Anne MacVicar, chair of the Centennial Farm committee, presented the newest award to the Froese family of Winkler, after which Dalnavert staff members Tim Worth and Nancy Anderson recognized volunteer service. Among the volunteers were three whose participation spanned the entire 30-year history of the museum: Kathleen Campbell, Betty Jo Johnston, and Kathleen Richardson. Other volunteers whose long service was acknowledged included Joan Spencer, Louise Beatty, Rob Inman, Liliane Puhach, Fran Coulter, Dodie Metcalfe, and Stephanie Middagh. To acknowledge corresponding volunteer service to the Society, First Vice-President Gordon Goldsborough thanked people who help in the MHS office - Doreen Ball, Joan Birt, Kay Crowston and Areen Mulder - and the chairs of our various working committees: Judith Hudson Beattie (Centennial Business, Young Historians), Bob Coutts (Manitoba History), Alan Crossin (Program, Planned Giving, Heritage Trust), Ashley Drewett-Laird and Irene Shaw (Historic Preservation), Bill Fraser (Keywords, Ross House Management), Carl James (125th Anniversary), John Lehr (Field Trips), Anne MacVicar (Centennial Farm), Margaret Morse (Macdonald Dinner), Morris Mott (Manitoba History), Jim Richtik (McWilliams), and Ken Zealand (Finance).

George and Nettie Froese (left, center) receive Centennial Farm Award
from Anne MacVicar
(Click photo to enlarge)

A short intermission featured a performance by Métis recording artist Ted Longbottom, whose music was used in the History Channel’s acclaimed "Quest for the Bay" television series. Daniel Koulack on the fiddle accompanied Ted on the guitar and spoons, while historical photographs projected in the background. Ted concluded the performance with a poignant song about one of his ancestors killed in the Second World War, from his recent CD entitled Longbottom - River Road which was available for sale at the end of the program.

Ted Longbottom (right) and Daniel Koulack perform
(Click photo to enlarge)

The program resumed with the presentation of Centennial Business Awards by Judith Hudson Beattie, Ken Zealand, and David Deane. The theme of the presentations was "hotels" with awards made to the Queens Hotel of Rapid City (1881), and the Woodbine (1878), Winnipeg (1881), Occidental (1886), Vendome (1898), Windsor (1902), and Mariaggi (1903), all of Winnipeg. Profiles of each recipient can be found on our web site (

Centennial Businesses
(Click photo to enlarge)

Woodbine Hotel,
Dana & Don Matthews (center, right)

Queens Hotel,
Jim Christie (left)

Winnipeg Hotel,
Mervin Bauming (left)

Occidental Hotel,
Richard Wells (right)

Vendome Hotel,
Doug & Ed Romanik (right)

Mariaggi Hotel,
Lowell Laluk (right)

The final Margaret McWilliams Award for 2003, in the Local History category, was presented by Jim Blanchard to Barbara Huck, editor for Crossroads of the Continent: A History of the Forks of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers.

McWilliam Award presentation to Ms. Huck (left)

Jackie Friesen concluded the program with more Centennial Organization Awards presentations to Crescent Fort Rouge United Church (1883), St. Demetrius Ukrainian Greek Orthodox Church of Gardenton (1904), Cathedral Church of St. John (1820), Westminster United Church (1892), St. John's-Ravenscourt School (1820), Villa Rosa (1898), and the North West Commercial Travellers Association of Canada (1882). As above, profiles of each recipient are on our web site.

Centennial Organizations
(Click photo to enlarge)

Crescent Fort Rouge
United Church

St. Demetrius Ukrainian Greek Orthodox Church

Cathedral Church of
St. John

United Church

St. John's-Ravenscourt School

Villa Rosa

North West Commercial Travellers Association of Canada

MHS YouTube Channel

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