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Memorable Manitobans: Robert McDermott (1868-1947)

Farmer, municipal official.

Born at Clinton, Ontario in December 1868, son of Joseph McDermott and Frances Ferriss, the family came to Manitoba in June 1874 and took up a farm near Macdonald. In 1897, he joined the rush to the Yukon, seeking his fortune in gold, returning as “Klondike Bob” two years later with enough gold to propose marriage to Jessie Isabel Grant. They subsequently had three children: Winifred McDermott (b 1904), Frances Isabel McDermott (b 1907), and Hugh McDermott (b 1913). Active in community affairs, he served as a municipal councilor and was Reeve of the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie (1923-1925). He also served many years on the Board for the Portage Mutual Insurance Company. He died suddenly at his farm on 29 May 1947 and was buried in Burnside Cemetery.

See also:

Three Manitoba Pioneer Women: A Legacy of Servant-Leadership by Carolyn Crippen
Manitoba History, Number 53, October 2006


1911 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.

The Tread of the Pioneers by J. H. Metcalfe, The Portage la Prairie and District Old Timers’ Association, Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1932.

“Robert McDermott, colorful Portage man, died suddenly”, Portage la Prairie Leader, 29 May 1947, page 1.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 29 June 2012

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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