Memorable Manitobans: Agnar Rae Magnusson (1900-1996)
Born at Hecla Island on 2 June 1900, son of August Magnusson and Ragnheidur Straumfjord, the family moved to a farm east of Lundar in 1904. He began his formal education, at Nordurstjarna School, at the age of nine then studied at the Jon Bjarnason Academy in Winnipeg. He majored in Mathematics and Latin at Wesley College and the University of Manitoba, winning the University Gold Medals in both subjects upon graduation in 1923. He received an MA degree in Mathematics and a teaching certificate in 1925.
He began a 60-year teaching career, starting as the Principal of Riverton School (1925-1928), then moving to the Jon Bjarnason Academy where he served as Dean for several years and taught Mathematics, Physics, and Chemistry from 1929 to 1940. When the Academy closed in 1940, he joined the Winnipeg School Division, teaching at Faraday School and others until retirement in 1969. He contined to tutor Mathematics in his home until 1985.
Having learned to play chess from his father in childhood, he became the Winnipeg chess champion in 1929 and the Manitoba chess champion in 1932. He was married with four daughters.
He died at Winnipeg on 30 December 1996.
Annual Reports of the Manitoba Department of Education, Manitoba Legislative Library.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 3 January 1997, page C7.
We thank Frances Kasper and Janis Magnusson for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 1 March 2014
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