Memorable Manitobans: Edmund Partridge (1868-1955)
Market gardener, municipal official.
Born in Boston, Lincolnshire, England on 2 July 1868, son of Edmund Partridge (1841-1923), he was educated in a private school and, at the age of 20, came to Canada with his family. After a short period in the employ of the Canadian Pacific Railway, he came to West Kildonan. He bought a ten-acre plot at what is now the corner of Hartford Avenue and McGregor Street and started a market gardening business.
On 2 July 1892, he married Edith Helen Kitts (1873-1953) at St. John’s Cathedral and they subsequently had eight children: Helene Ethelwyn Partridge (1893-1974, wife of Nelson M. McGill), Thomas Sidney Edmund “Ted” Partridge (1895-1975), Lillian Partridge (1896-1982, wife of Edward J. “Jack” Button), Edith Mary Partridge (1897-1973, wife of Robert Kirkwood McCrea), Eveline Partridge (wife of David E. Farlinger), William Arthur Partridge (1903-1958), Edna May Partridge (1904-1994, wife of Arthur Mountain), and John Frederick Archibald Partridge.
The Partridges were largely responsible for establishing the Anglican church St. Martin-in-the-Fields, first holding services in Mrs. Partridge’s uncle’s house, later in their own. The first church building was constructed across the road from their home and was named in honor of her uncle, Thomas E. Martin. Partridge served for 40 years in the local municipal government, 15 years as a councilor then 25 years as Reeve of Kildonan and Reeve of West Kildonan. He was also a member of the water district board from 1915 to 1945, except for a period between 1918 and 1924. He ran unsuccessfully in the 1940 federal general election.
Partridge died on 6 April 1955, at the age of 86 years, and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery. He is commemorated by Partridge Avenue in Winnipeg, and Edmund Partridge School.
Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
“Pioneer market gardener dead,” Winnipeg Tribune, 11 September 1923. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B7]
“Mr. and Mrs. Edmund Partridge,” Winnipeg Free Press, 30 June 1947, page 6.
“Mrs. E. Partridge, West Kildonan Oldtimer dies,” Winnipeg Free Press, 28 March 1953, page 38.
“New school board head is daughter and sister to West Kildonan Mayors”, Winnipeg Free Press, 9 January 1956, page 13.
Obituary [William Arthur Partridge], Winnipeg Free Press, 12 November 1958, page 28.
Obituary [J. F. A. Partridge], Winnipeg Free Press, 21 July 1966, page 13.
“West Kildonan school street honor Edmund Partridge”, Leisure Magazine, 18 March 1967, page 8.
Obituary [Edith Mary McCrea], Winnipeg Free Press, 10 January 1973, page 37.
Obituary [Helene Ethelwyn McGill], Winnipeg Free Press, 12 November 1974, page 23.
Obituary [Thomas Partridge], Winnipeg Free Press, 18 March 1975, page 29.
Obituary [Lillian Button], Winnipeg Free Press, 22 February 1982, page 32.
Obituary [Edna May Mountain], Winnipeg Free Press, 22 November 1994.
We thank Lyle Brennen for providing additional information used here.
This page is based on information compiled by historian Harry Shave.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough, Nathan Kramer, and Christian Cassidy.
Page revised: 4 September 2022