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Memorable Manitobans: Garnet Coulter (1882-1975)

Click to enlargeLawyer, Mayor of Winnipeg (1943-1954).

His parents came to Manitoba from Ontario and settled on a farm near Dominion City. Here, Coulter was born in August 1882. After a grade school education, he taught at Langside School (1902-1903) then moved to Winnipeg in 1903, where he subsequently graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Law degree.

He practiced law in Winnipeg from 1907 until the outbreak of the First World War. Coulter joined the Canadian Forestry Corps and went overseas, where he served in France as a transport officer. He later returned to Winnipeg and resumed his law practice. He was appointed a King’s Counsel in 1934.

He served as a member of the Winnipeg School Board from 1924 to 1936 and, in 1936, was elected as Winnipeg City Alderman from Ward Two. On city council he was an inveterate opponent of Mayor John Queen. He ran successfully for mayor as an independent in 1942, and served until 1954. In the 1946 election, he received more than 62,000 votes. Mayor during the Manitoba flood of 1950, he was responsible for the creation of the Manitoba Flood Relief Fund. As mayor he was regarded as fair, but dull. After his defeat in 1954, he became chairman of the Court of Revision. In 1970 he was awarded a Manitoba Centennial Medal by the Manitoba Historical Society.

Husband of Jessica Coulter.

Coulter died on 8 October 1975 and was buried in Brookside Cemetery.


This profile is prepared, in part, from information compiled by historian Harry Shave.

Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by J. M. Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 2 February 2014

Memorable Manitobans

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