Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Abraham Cohen (1876-1944)

Building contractor, community activist.

Born in Russia on 20 December 1879, he came to Winnipeg around 1904 and worked in real estate. Active in the city's Jewish community, he co-founded the Chesed Shel Emes Chapel with his older brother Reuben Cohen, was an organizer and charter member of the Hebrew Sick Benefit Association, organizer of the B'Nai Jacob Free Loan Association, and served on the board of the Winnipeg Hebrew Free School. In the 1920s, he was the proprietor of the European Sanitary Baths in the European Block.

He and wife Etta (Ethel) Gladstone (1881-1972) had four children: Louis Cecil Cohen (1903-1972), Sarah Clara Cohen (1909-1991, wife of Maurice Karalnick), Jennie “Jen” Cohen (1910-2009, wife of Jack Ralph Boxer), and Jack Hershel Cohen (1912-2006).

He died at his Winnipeg home, 374 Pritchard Avenue, on 8 January 1944 and was buried in the Hebrew Sick Benefit Cemetery.

Some of his construction works in Manitoba included:

Building

Location

Year

Status

Galsky Block

656 Aberdeen Avenue, Winnipeg

1910

 

Continental Block

794-796 Main Street, Winnipeg

1911

 

Wasserman Block

581-583 Selkirk Avenue, Winnipeg

1911

 

Mindell House

292 Austin Street North, Winnipeg

1912

 

European Block

588 Manitoba Avenue, Winnipeg

1914

 

Sources:

Birth registrations [Louis Cohen, Sarah Clara Cohen, Jennie Cohen, Jack Hershel Cohen], Manitoba Vital Statistics.

1916 Canada census, Ancestry.

Marriage registration [Jennie Cohen, Jack Ralph Boxer], Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Death registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 8 January 1944, page 2.

“Abraham Cohen funeral held,” Winnipeg Tribune, 10 January 1944, page 5.

Obituary [Louis C. Cohen], Winnipeg Free Press, 15 March 1972, page 41.

Obituary [Eta Cohen], Winnipeg Tribune, 18 October 1972, page 36.

Obituary [Sarah Karal], Winnipeg Free Press, 23 June 1991, page 27.

Obituary [Jack H. Cohen], Winnipeg Free Press, 23 February 2006.

Obituary [Jennie Boxer], Winnipeg Free Press, 28 March 2009.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

We thank Jordan Makichuk for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough and Monica Ball.

Page revised: 17 June 2023

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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