Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Thomas M. Harrington (1847-1937)

Building contractor.

Born at Montreal, Quebec on 3 January 1847, he attended country schools in Maryboro County, Ontario. At the age of 16 he took up the carriage-making trade until 1881, when he came to Manitoba with his wife and children. He worked as a general contractor in Winnipeg, as a partner in the firm of Harrington and Thompson, then moved to Brandon and continued work in this area. In 1906, the Brandon Construction Company was incorporated, with him as its managing director. It became the city’s largest building firm doing business throughout western Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta.

On 26 January 1870, he married Margaret Thomson (1852-1929) and they had six children: William James Harrington, Lilly Harrington (1874-1890), Mary J. Harrington (1877-?), Ida May Harrington (1879-?. wife of William Henry McKinnon of Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan), Carrie A. Harrington (1883-?), and Herbert Baldwin Harrington (1885-?). He was a member of the Masons (Royal Arch), Winnipeg Building Society, and Young Methodist (United) Church. He retired from business in 1916 and returned to Winnipeg, where he lived successively at 153 Hargrave Street and 141 Sherbrook Street.

He died at Winnipeg on 30 January 1937 and was buried in the St. James Anglican Cemetery.

Some of his construction works in Manitoba included:

Building

Location

Year

Status

Old Mulvey School

Winnipeg

?

 

Westminster Block

330 Donald Street, Winnipeg

?

 

Caldwell Block

Winnipeg

?

 

Wesley Methodist Church

520 William Avenue, Winnipeg

1898

 

Brandon College

270 Eighteenth Street, Brandon

1901

 

Carman School No. 176

Third Avenue SW, Carman

1902

Demolished (c1961)

Bank of Montreal Building

940 Rosser Avenue, Brandon

1903

 

Park School

Lorne Avenue, Brandon

1904

Demolished (1978)

Brandon Court House

1104 Princess Avenue, Brandon

1908-1910

 

A. E. McKenzie Building

30 Ninth Street, Brandon

1909-1910

 

Canadian Pacific Railway Station

1000 Pacific Avenue, Brandon

1911

 

Brandon Normal School

1129 Queens Avenue, Brandon

1912-1913

 

Bank of Commerce

Brandon

?

 

Great Northern Railway Station

Brandon

?

 

Indian Industrial School

Brandon

?

 

Brandon Winter Fair Building

Eleventh Street, Brandon

?

 

First Methodist Church

Brandon

?

 

Brandon Power House

Brandon

?

 

Sources:

Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

1901 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.

The Story of Manitoba by F. H. Schofield, Winnipeg: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1913.

“Old-time city resident dies, aged 69 years,” Winnipeg Tribune, 24 August 1929, page 5.

“His 90th birthday,” Brandon Sun, 7 January 1937, page 9.

Death registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“T. Harrington, pioneer in city building, dies,” Winnipeg Tribune, 2 February 1937, page 17.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 1 July 2022

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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