Memorable Manitobans: Gerald Alfred John “Jerry” Hemsworth (1911-2005)
Born at St. Boniface on 27 October 1911, son of Thomas Henry Hemsworth (c1883-1959) and Lillian Hattie Collett (c1883-1961), in his youth he worked on Canadian National Railway dining cars and later at the first Salisbury House restaurant on Fort Street in Winnipeg, where he learned the restaurant business from owner Ralph Erwin. He also met John Porteous Rae there and, in 1936, they moved to Fort William (Ontario) with two others partners, Gordon Hill and Casey Byron, and operated a restaurant together.
Hemsworth and Rae returned to Winnipeg and in September 1939, with financial help from Arthur Chipman, opened a restaurant at the corner of Portage Avenue and Vaughan Street. In 1947, it was relocated to Kennedy Street and renamed Rae and Jerry’s Steak House, then in 1950 to a site on Portage at Langside. In 1957, it settled on a site immediately east of Polo Park that became a Winnipeg institution. In 1975, the two partners sold the business to Steve Hrousalas and Hemsworth retired.
On 29 April 1942, he married Marjorie Helen “Marge” Johnston (1915-2011). They had no children.
He died at Winnipeg on 6 June 2005.
Birth registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Obituary [Thomas Henry Hemsworth], Winnipeg Free Press, 18 March 1959, page 28.
Obituary [Lillian H. Hemsworth], Winnipeg Free Press, 24 May 1961, page 32.
“Cynthia Wine says ...,” Winnipeg Free Press, 20 January 1973, page 7.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 10 June 2005.
Obituary [Marjorie Helen Hemsworth], Winnipeg Free Press, 1 October 2011.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 10 December 2021