Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Newton Percival Brett (1889-1969)

Designer.

Born in the Rural Municipality of Springfield on 14 August 1889, son of William Brett and Elizabeth Scott (1855-1943), and brother of Norman Ewart Brett and William Herman Brett, he grew up in the Dugald area and attended North Plympton School. He became a fashion designer and worked at Brigdens in Winnipeg, by 1921 boarding with his sister Ena Violet Brett and her husband, Robert Alexander Hoey, at Rosetta Court Apartments. During the 1920s, he had portrait commissions including judge Hugh Amos Robson and lawyer Esten Kenneth Williams.

On 28 June 1922, he married Florence Alexandria “Flora” Batters (?-1997) at her parent’s Winnipeg residence, 214 Chestnut Street. They had two children: Peter A. Brett and Joanne Brett (wife of Jeremy Sibley) and, within several years, took up long-term residence at 263 Montrose Street. He served two terms as President of the Manitoba Society of Artists (1944-1946).

He died at Winnipeg on 23 July 1969 and his cremated remains were buried in the Brookside Cemetery.

Sources:

Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

1901 & 1911 Canada censes, Automated Genealogy.

1921 & 1926 Canada census, Library and Archives Canada.

“Dugald entertainment,” Manitoba Free Press, 6 July 1904, page 20.

“Social and personal [Miss Florence Batters ...],” Manitoba Free Press, 28 June 1922, page 8.

“Manitoba artists elect Norman Brett,” Winnipeg Tribune, 29 March 1944, page 33.

“Art [M. S. A. Annual],” Winnipeg Free Press, 1 April 1944, page 10.

“Newton Brett heads Society of Artists,” Winnipeg Free Press, 19 March 1945, page 6.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 25 July 1969, page 28.

Brookside Cemetery burial transcriptions, City of Winnipeg.

Henderson’s Winnipeg and Brandon Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.

Page revised: 31 October 2020

Memorable Manitobans

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