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Memorable Manitobans: William Pearson (1865-1940)

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Born at Manchester, England on 20 March 1865, son of Charles and Mary Pearson, he was educated in England then came to Manitoba in 1883 and engaged as stock breeder and farmer near St. Francois Xavier, establishing one of the first creameries in western Canada. He moved to Winnipeg in 1902.

Click to enlargeHe was a member of the Central Emigration Board, Settlers’ Information League, Winnipeg Real Estate Exchange, and the Winnipeg Industrial & Development Bureau. He cooperated in organizing the Central Canada Chamber of Mines, Agricultural Banks of Canada, Young Liberal Club, Canadian-American Immigration Association, the Town Planning Commission, the and the Social Welfare Commission. In 1906 he formed the William Pearson Company which developed and settled the Qu’Appelle and Last Mountain areas of Saskatchewan, and the Wildwood subdivision of Fort Garry.

On 17 October 1888, he married Margaret Eleanor Morrison at St. Francois Xavier, Manitoba. They had six children: Evelyn Mowbray Pearson (b 1889), Arthur Maurice Pearson (b 1890), Agnes Dorothy Pearson (b 1892), James Morrison Pearson (b 1894), Gertrude Margaret Pearson (b 1896), and Winnifred Irene Pearson (b 1907). He helped to organize, with Robert Aitken, J. H. R. Bond, and Ella Cora Hind, the Winnipeg Garden Club. He also helped to organize the Fort Rouge Bowling Club and was a charter member of the Carleton Club. He was Chairman of the Winnipeg Board of Trade. He was a member of the AF & AM (Prince Rupert’s Lodge No. 1), Canadian Club of Winnipeg, and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church.

He died at Winnipeg on 3 October 1940 and was buried in St. John’s Cemetery.


Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Who’s Who in Western Canada: A Biographical Dictionary of Notable Living Men and Women of Western Canada, Volume 1, edited by C. W. Parker, Vancouver: Canadian Press Association, 1911.

“William Pearson dies; was real estate pioneer” Winnipeg Tribune, 4 October 1940. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B9, page 98]

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

Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by J. M. Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

Page revised: 7 March 2010

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