Winnipeg in Focus is a database for archival descriptions and digital collections at the City of Winnipeg Archives.

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authority records

Brooklands (Man.)

  • Corporate body
  • 1921-1968

Both the Rural Municipality and the Village of Brooklands were incorporated on June 10, 1921 through Order in Council No. 36806. Originally part of the Rural Municipality of Rosser, Brooklands qualified for village status under section 9 of chapter 133 of The Municipal Act. The Letters Patent incorporating Brooklands as a village describe the municipality’s original boundaries as “comprising not more than 640 acres, formerly comprised within the limits and extent of the Rural Municipality of Rosser, bounded on the south by Notre Dame Avenue, on the east by Keewatin Street, on the north by Geyser Avenue, and on the west by the center line running north and south of section 14 in township 11 in range 2 east of the first principal meridian in the Province of Manitoba.” On October 4, 1961, under section 16 of The Municipal Act and through Order in Council No. 1207, the Village of Brooklands became a Town. Six years later, in 1967, the Town of Brooklands amalgamated into the City of St. James. In 1968, a further merger between the City of St. James and the Rural Municipality of Assiniboia resulted in formation of the new City of St. James-Assiniboia, which in turn joined eleven other municipalities in amalgamation with the City of Winnipeg in 1972.

Note that from 1939 until 1954, the Village of Brooklands was under the jurisdiction of the Municipal and Public Utility Board. In 1959, after approximately four years of independence, the Village was taken back under the supervision of the Public Utility Board. In 1954, after nearly eighteen years under a provincial trustee, Brooklands was granted the right to administer its own school affairs.

As in other municipalities, government organization in Brooklands was dictated by its letters patent. Accordingly, council consisted of a mayor, sometimes called a reeve, and four councilors elected by qualified electors of the village/town. Council duties included the formulation of public policy, implementation and administration. Like other municipal councils, policy administration was delegated to standing committees comprised of council members. Standing committees were: finance, by-laws, public works, social welfare, water works, fire and police services. In addition to these functions, the municipality was responsible for assessment, tax collection, elections, and for at least part of its history, overseeing a school district. In the 1960’s, with powers acquired when it achieved Town status, council established a Parks Board and an Industrial Development Board.

Typically, daily operations within a municipality are carried out by line departments. It is likely that these records were merged into departmental records in the City of St. James following the merger in 1967, and subsequently into record series in the City of St. James-Assiniboia and the City of Winnipeg at amalgamation. Remaining records for the Village and Town of Brooklands provide little information on departmental organization or operations.

Smaill, William

  • Person
  • 1870-1947

William Smaill was born in Montréal in 1870 and was educated as a chemist and a civil engineer. In 1892, Smaill was living in Acadian Mines, Nova Scotia, but briefly returned to Montréal to marry Jane Robinson Batt, who was from Ireland. In 1894, they had a son, William Hubert, and a daughter, Margaret Kathleen, in 1896. Shortly after this, Smaill and his family moved to Rat Portage (now Kenora), where he worked as a mining engineer and had two more children: Elsie in 1899 and Carlton in 1901.

Smaill was involved in the construction of the Winnipeg Aqueduct that transports safe drinking water from Shoal Lake to Winnipeg. Preliminary work for the aqueduct began in 1914 and included the building of the Greater Winnipeg Water District Railway and the Falcon River Diversion that diverted the waters of Falcon River, which had an unwanted colour, to Snowshoe Bay. The diversion solved the problem of unwanted colouration of the water supply, but had the effect of limiting Kekekoziibii Shoal Lake 40 First Nation's access to the mainland. In September 1914, contracts were awarded to various companies to build portions of the aqueduct. The Northern Construction Company and the Carter Halls Aldinger Company made a joint bid and were awarded contracts 32, 33, and 34 to build over 47 miles of the aqueduct between Indian Bay and the Whitemouth River. The Winnipeg Aqueduct Construction Company, a conglomerate of Northern Construction and Carter Halls Aldiner, was incorporated in January 1915. William Smaill served as the new company’s superintendent, overseeing the construction of its portion of the aqueduct. The aqueduct was completed in March 1919.

Smaill took many photographs of the construction process and believed photography could be used as an engineering tool. He gave a paper to a University of Manitoba engineering class in 1918 titled, “The Uses of the Camera in Engineering Work”. He wrote several other papers on the aqueduct’s construction, including articles for the Excavating Engineer (1915 and 1917) out of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and the Engineer News Records (1917), out of New York City.

Smaill and his family lived in several places while construction of the aqueduct was underway. These places included Reynolds, Manitoba, the Rural Municipality of Springfield, Manitoba, as well as various camps along the aqueduct’s construction route. Shortly after the aqueduct’s completion, Smaill and his wife moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, where he was involved in the construction of the Ballantyne Pier and the Second Narrows Bridge. Smaill’s son, William Hubert, also an engineer, served in the First World War as a sapper from 1916 to 1918. Smaill’s other son, Carlton, died in 1921. Smaill passed away in Vancouver in 1947.

Tuxedo Park Company, Ltd.

  • Corporate body

Between 1903 and 1905, Winnipeg real estate agent Frederick W. Huebach began to purchase land for the Tuxedo Park Company, Limited, the controlling investors of which were located in the United States: E. C. Kenaston, E. C. Warner and Walter D. Douglas. Huebach was a managing director of the firm. In 1905, the company acquired farmland owned by Mary and Archibald Wright. This significant purchase, as well as several smaller land purchases, increased the amount of land intended for development to approximately 3,000 acres. Huebach planned to see the area transformed into a “Suburb Beautiful”, and approached architect and engineer Rickson A. Outhet at his Tuxedo Park, New York office to create an appropriate plan. Outhet visited Winnipeg in 1906 to survey the land and complete work on this commission (Manitoba Free Press, April 17, 1906). In 1910, Huebach and associates created the South Winnipeg Company and engaged the Olmsted brothers to plan the subdivision west of the Agricultural College. This plan included details of a site intended for a university. West of the proposed university site lay an area referred to as “Rydal” or “West Rydal”, which was laid out for residential development. While plans to develop the area were delayed for a variety of reasons, investors continued to support the venture and a number of companies were created to manage land transactions and investment: Tuxedo (Winnipeg) Syndicate, Limited; South Winnipeg Limited (later South Winnipeg 1923 Limited); Norwood (Winnipeg) Syndicate, Limited; Warner Land Company; Tuxedo Estates, Limited; Kenaston Realty Company; Univrsity Estates, Limited; Assiniboine Estates, Limited; Assiniboine Investments, Limited; South Assiniboine Estates, Limited; West Rydal Limited; and The Canadian Agency.

Frederick William Heubach was born in Ottawa in 1859 and arrived in Winnipeg in 1879. He was employed first as an accountant with the Hudson’s Bay Company, and then as Manager of the Winnipeg Industrial Development Exhibition Association. In 1902, he partnered with W. J. Christie, an established real estate broker, until incorporating his own business in 1905. Huebach died in 1914.

Winnipeg (Man.)

  • Corporate body
  • 1874-

The City of Winnipeg, Manitoba was created by Provincial statute in 1873. Its mandate was to govern and provide municipal services to citizens attracted to trade expansion between Upper and Lower Fort Garry and St. Paul, Minnesota. The City sprang from the Red River Settlement, an unincorporated village. Prior to creation of the Province of Manitoba in 1870, the area was administered by the Council of Assiniboia (1835-1870) and local community leaders, primarily Métis, who had camped within a fifty-mile radius of the junction of the Red and Assiniboine rivers since [1733]. Following the Dominion Government of Canada’s purchase of land from the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1869, the newly formed Province of Manitoba had jurisdiction over the area and began the process of municipal incorporation. Assiniboia had been created in circa 1812 by Lord Selkirk, who brought Scottish agricultural settlers to the area.

Since 1874, the City managed its affairs through various boards, commissions, and committees. Affiliations between 1881-1972 were thirteen suburban municipal Councils and, between 1960-1972, the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg (established to co-ordinate service delivery in the metropolitan region).

After 1972, when Chapter 105 of the Statutes of Manitoba came into force, the City of Winnipeg amalgamated with twelve area municipalities and the Metropolitan Corporation of Great Winnipeg into one city government.

The election of the first Council for the Unified City of Winnipeg was held on October 6, 1971 and the new City came into legal existence on January 1, 1972. The new unified City Council consisted of 50 Councillors elected on the basis of one from each of the 50 wards and a Mayor elected from the City-at-large. The Inaugural Meeting of the new Council took place on January 5, 1972.

Thirteen Community Committees were established under the Act; however, in 1974, on the recommendation of the Ward Boundaries Commission, the provincial government enacted legislation reducing the communities from thirteen to twelve while maintaining fifty wards. In 1977, further legislation reduced the communities to six and the wards to twenty-nine. Each had a Community Committee of Council and comprised the Councillors who represented the wards within each particular community.

In 1989, in accordance with the City of Winnipeg Act, a review of the boundaries of the City of Winnipeg was conducted and resulted in a number of changes to the community area boundaries and the number of wards for four of the communities. A subsequent review in 1991 resulted in further legislation passed in 1992, which reduced the communities to five and the wards to fifteen.

Further amendments were made to the City of Winnipeg Act in 1998. The powers of the mayor were increased and changes were made to the political decision-making structure.

In 2003, the City of Winnipeg Act was repealed and replaced with the City of Winnipeg Charter.

Winnipeg (Man.). Board of Parks and Recreation

  • Corporate body
  • 1893-1971

The first public parks board for the City of Winnipeg was created in 1893 through By-Law No. 575, which adopted provisions in the Public Parks Act enacted by the Province of Manitoba in 1892. Membership of the Public Parks Board was prescribed in the legislation and initially included the mayor, six councillors and six citizen members. The Board met at least once a month. Circa the late 1940’s, the Public Parks Act was incorporated into the Municipal Act RSM as Chapter 141 Division III. An amendment to the Act dated April 20, 1951 resulted in a change of name: from Public Parks Board or Winnipeg Public Parks Board to Winnipeg Board of Parks and Recreation.

When first established, the Board was involved in acquiring land to create a system of urban parks throughout the City – including Assiniboine and Kildonan Parks. In addition to park development, the Board constructed and operated municipal golf courses and swimming pools, was involved in city beautification through tree planting and boulevard construction and maintenance, provided facilities for recreation, and managed the zoo and municipal cemeteries – including Brookside.

The Board had wide-ranging powers, including the ability to purchase property for park purposes and pass by-laws for the use, regulation, protection and governance of City parks. A committee structure was adopted to facilitate the work of the Board. In 1911, the Board passed By-Law No. 10 to regulate the proceedings and conduct of its committees and officers. Committees established by the Board reflected major responsibilities and initiatives. Periodically, special or sub-committees were formed to address specific issues. These were dissolved once the issue had been resolved. For most of its history, the Standing Committees of the Board were as follows:

Finance Committee
Boulevards and Trees Committee
Parks Committee
Cemetery Committee
Recreation Committee
Golf Committee.

In 1964, following the transfer of golf courses and large urban parks to the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg, the City of Winnipeg held a referendum on the future of the Winnipeg Board of Parks and Recreation. The result of voting on City of Winnipeg By-Law 19003 was 15,144 for and 12,537 against the dissolution of the Winnipeg Board of Parks and Recreation. By-Law 19060 then established the Committee on Parks and Recreation, which took over all of the duties and responsibilities of the Winnipeg Board of Parks and Recreation effective January 1, 1965.

Winnipeg (Man.). City Clerk's Department

  • Corporate body
  • 1874-

The City of Winnipeg (1874-1971) was incorporated by a charter granted by the legislature of Manitoba on November 8, 1873. The office of the City Clerk was established early in 1874, its primary responsibilities having been defined in the Charter. The main duties of the City Clerk were to record and maintain a record of all resolutions, decisions and proceedings of Council and to act as the Returning Officer for the election of the Mayor and members of Council, for voting on money by-laws or plebiscites and for the election of school trustees for the School District of Winnipeg No. 1 (from 1891). By the 1880’s, the City Clerk was the Vital Statistics Division Registrar and kept records of vital statistics for Winnipeg (births, deaths and marriages). Further, the City Clerk was responsible for purchasing and distributing all stationery supplies required by the City and for preparing and distributing the Municipal Manual, an annual publication first published in 1904. The City Clerk also acted as Clerk of the Greater Winnipeg Water District (GWWD) and the Greater Winnipeg Sanitary District (GWSD). These districts were created in 1913 and 1935, respectively. When the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg (Metro) was created in 1961, the GWWD and the GWSD ceased to exist and the City Clerk was relieved of the task of clerking these two bodies. In 1964, the City Clerk became responsible for the regulation and control of the Civic Charities Endorsement Bureau, which was previously administered by the Public Welfare Department. With amalgamation in 1972, the City Clerk’s Department for the former City of Winnipeg took on this role for the new City of Winnipeg (1972-).

There have been seventeen City Clerks since the incorporation of Winnipeg as follows: A.M. Brown (1874-1883); C.J. Brown (1883-1926); M. Peterson (1926-1935); G.F. Bentley (1935-1945); L.M. Ault (1945-1948); G.L. Gardner (1948-1962); J.B. Kinnear (1962-1964); T. Mitchell (1964-1966); J.A. Masson (1966); W.A. Quayle (1966-1976); H.E. Sanger (1976-1979); R.J. Fergusson (1979-1986); M.G. McCullough (1986-1987); R.B. Hayes (1987-1991); D.E. Browton (1992-2000); R. Kachur (2001-2018); and M. Lemoine (2018-present).

Charles E. Goad Company

  • Corporate body
  • 1895-1915

The Charles E. Goad Company was established by Charles Goad in Montreal in 1875 and dominated the Canadian fire insurance plan business for more than fifty years. Fire insurance underwriting firms like Goad’s produced detailed plans of urban communities for subscribing fire insurance companies and their agents to assist in assessing fire liability of insurance holders. At the time of his death in 1910, Goad and his surveyors had mapped over thirteen hundred Canadian communities. The company continued under the direction of Goad’s three sons. In 1911, an agreement was reached between the Goad Company and the Canadian Fire Underwriters’ Association (CFUA) by which the Goad’s was to make and revise plans for the CFUA. The agreement was terminated in 1917 and soon after the CFUA acquired exclusive rights to revise and reprint the Goad plans for the use of Association members. The company ceased production of fire insurance plans by 1918 and was dissolved in 1930.

Charleswood (Man.)

  • Corporate body
  • 1913-1971.

The Rural Municipality of Charleswood was incorporated in 1913 when the community on the south side of the Assiniboine River chose to separate from the Municipality of Assiniboia. The RM included those portions of the Parishes of Headingley and St. Charles that lay south of the river, but excluded any property belonging to the Town of Tuxedo or City of Winnipeg. According to the Charleswood Historical Society, Charleswood was either named after the councilman Charles Kelly or the Parish of St. Charles and the nearby woodlands. An Act to Amend "The Municipal Boundaries Act" officially created the RM. This piece of provincial legislation came into force on February 15, 1913. George Chapman became the first Reeve shortly thereafter.

Councils consisted of a Reeve or Mayor and four Councillors. The functional responsibilities of the RM of Charleswood were defined in versions of The Municipal Act and would later change in 1960 with the creation of the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg. At one time, the municipal office would have included the following positions: City Clerk, Treasurer, Superintendent of Public Works, Municipal Accountant, Chief Constable, Fire Chief, Shop Foreman, Draughtsman, and Welfare Officer. The law firm Lawrence & Sansome was routinely hired as solicitors and Templeton Engineering served as consultants for many years. In addition to Council, the municipal government included the Town Planning Committee, Public Works Committee, and Charleswood Voluntary Fire Brigade. It was part of the St. James-St. Vital-Fort Garry-Charleswood-Assiniboia-Tuxedo Health Unit.

Charleswood was a predominantly rural area supported by agricultural production, dairy and poultry farms, and mink ranches. Following the Second World War, there was a marked increase in population and an expansion of residential areas. One development that dates from this time was a settlement for ex-servicemen called Roblin Park, a project made possible by the Veteran’s Land Act. The growth of Charleswood into “the Suburb Beautiful” was accompanied by the increase and diversification of local services and businesses. The municipal government mirrored these changes and constructed the first Municipal Civic Centre in 1965.

The RM of Charleswood ceased to exist in 1972, when Chapter 105 of the Statutes of Manitoba came into force unifying twelve area municipalities and the Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg into one city government. Following amalgamation, Charleswood Park was created as part of the new municipal structure.

Clark, Owen

  • Person
  • 1938-

Owen Clark was born on July 16, 1938 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. His first experience playing a musical instrument occurred in 1955 at a Canadian Army cadet camp in Dundurn, Saskatchewan where he played the snare drum. A year later at Tec Voc High School in Winnipeg, Clark replaced an absent bass drummer in a school performance, and decided to become a professional musician when he was invited to join the country group, the CKY Playboys in the late 1950s. In 1971, Clark graduated with a Bachelor of Music Education and a Licentiate Diploma in Performance (High Distinction in Percussion) from McGill University in Montreal. In 1974, he received a Masters of Science in Education (Major in Music) from Moorhead State University in Moorhead, Minnesota. Clark has five children and is married to Kolleen Karlowsky.

Clark’s musical skills include drums, vocals, percussion, electric bass, composing and arranging. For many years, he taught The History of Rock Music and Percussion at the University of Manitoba, and Music, Canadian History and Computer courses in the Seven Oaks School Division (Winnipeg). He was a radio announcer and chair of the program committee at CJNU radio station in Winnipeg and performed for radio and television, including recording at CBC (TV and Radio), CTV, CKND, and Shaw cable television network. In addition, Clark performed on albums, jingles, films, documentaries and videos at major Winnipeg recording studios. His symphonic experience includes the CBC Montreal Opera Orchestra, Les Grande Ballets Canadienne, National Arts Center Orchestra (Ottawa), Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Royal Winnipeg Ballet, National Ballet, the Manitoba Opera Co., and the CBC Winnipeg Orchestra. Commercially, Clark has performed Classical, Jazz, Rock, Country, Pop, Latin music and in musical theatre, and has appeared with Stevie Wonder, Sarah Vaughan, the Four Aces, Esquivel, Lionel Hampton, Jazzmobile, Stanley Black, Arthur Fiedler, Vincent Price, the Queen City Kids, Rich Little, Lenny Breau, Tom Jackson, Harry Belafonte, Ron Paley, Bob Hope, Andy Williams, Gloria Loring, Freddy Fender, Pat Boone, Bobby Curtola, Len Cariou, Catherine McKinnon, and on Sesame Street, Disney On Parade, the Ice Capades, Alan Blye, Aubrey Tadman, Rainbow Stage, Manitoba Theatre Centre, and The Warehouse Theatre. As co-owner of Clark Productions Ltd. since 1980, Clark plays drums, bass, and percussion and sings with Owen Clark and the Good Time Dance Band, the Owen Clark Big Band, the Ragtime Strutters, and the Owen Clark Jazz Group. He also freelances with many bands, singers, and performing groups in the Winnipeg area. In 2008 he published the book, Musical Ghosts: Manitoba’s Jazz and Dance Bands, 1914-1966 using many photographs from his Collection in the book.

As part of a creative arts committee at Elwick Community School in Winnipeg, Manitoba Clark was awarded the Hilroy Fellowship for Innovative Teaching in 1986. In 2009, he received the Manitoba Jazz Musician of the Year Award and an Association for Manitoba Archives Manitoba Day Award. In 2011 he was nominated for a Winnipeg Arts Council Arts Award.

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