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Memorable Manitobans: John Hamilton Gordon Russell (1863-1946)

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John Hamilton Gordon Russell
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Architect.

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J. H. G. Russell
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Born at Toronto, Ontario on 5 November 1863, son of James and Fanny Heath Russell, he was educated at the Toronto Model School. He worked as a draughtsman in Toronto starting in 1879 then came to Winnipeg in 1882. He set up an architectural practice in 1895, and over the course of nearly a half century, Russell designed some of Winnipeg’s finest buildings. A Presbyterian church at Roslyn, Washington is also attributed to him.

He served as the First Vice-President (1906) and President (1910) of the Manitoba Association of Architects. In addition to his architectural work, Russell was Vice-President of the Winnipeg Mercantile Trust Company, President of the Manitoba Association of Architects, a Director of the Canadian Securities Company, a member of Manitoba Board of Examiners of Architects, and a stockholder in Monarch Life Assurance Company, Sovereign Life, Standard Trusts Company, Great West Permanent Loan and Savings Company, and Northern Crown Bank.

On 2 March 1898, he married Agnes McAlpine Campbell (1868-1943) of Milton, Ontario. They had three children: John Gordon Russell (1899-1983), Ruth McAlpine Russell (1903-?, wife of Fred Walker), and Norman Campbell Hall Russell. He was a member of the Canadian Club of Winnipeg and the AF & AM. In 1911, the family lived at 237 Wellington Crescent, Winnipeg.

Uncle of architect G. Leslie Russell.

Russell died at Winnipeg on 7 February 1946 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.

Some of his architectural works in Manitoba included:

Building

Location

Year

Status

Maw Block

280 William Avenue, Winnipeg

1897

 

Gladstone School

Osborne Street, Winnipeg

1898

Demolished (1962)

Wellington School

Wellington Avenue, Winnipeg

1898

Demolished

Ashdown Warehouse addition

179 Bannatyne Avenue, Winnipeg

1899

 

Carnefac Block

188 Princess Street, Winnipeg

1901

 

Lake of the Woods Building

212 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg

1901

 

L. L. Lang Residence

62 Roslyn Road, Winnipeg

1901

 

Children’s Home of Winnipeg (expansion)

198 River Avenue, Winnipeg

1901-1902

Demolished

Hammond Building

63 Albert Street, Winnipeg

1902

 

McKerchar Block

600-602 Main Street, Winnipeg

1902-1903

 

J. Porter and Company Building

368 Main Street, Winnipeg

1902-1903

Demolished

Adelman Building

92-100 Princess Street, Winnipeg

1903

 

Bole Drug Building

70 Princess Street, Winnipeg

1903

 

McArthur House

159 Mayfair Avenue, Winnipeg

1903

 

William A. Windatt House

657 Wellington Crescent, Winnipeg

1903

 

Free Kindergarten Building

294 Ellen Street, Winnipeg

1903

 

Thomson Block

499 Main Street, Winnipeg

1903

Demolished

Bright and Johnston Building renovations

137 Bannatyne Avenue, Winnipeg

1903

 

Augustine Presbyterian Church

444 River Avenue, Winnipeg

1903-1904

 

Starbuck Presbyterian Church

Starbuck, RM of Macdonald

1903-1904

Destroyed (2014)

Allman Block

592-594 Main Street, Winnipeg

1904

 

Daylite Building addition

296 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg

1904

 

Ashdown Building

476 Main Street, Winnipeg

1904

 

C. H. Becket House

94 Middlegate, Winnipeg

1904

 

Franklin Press Building

168 Bannatyne Avenue, Winnipeg

1904

 

Green and Litster Block

235-237 Fort Street, Winnipeg

1904

Demolished

Silvester-Willson Building

222 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg

1904

 

Wilson House

545 Broadway, Winnipeg

1904

 

Calvary Temple / First Baptist Church

400 Hargrave Street, Winnipeg

1904

 

F. M. Morse House

515 Wellington Crescent, Winnipeg

1905

Demolished

Pilot Mound School No. 105

Pilot Mound

1905

Demolished

Aikins Block renovation

221 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg

1905

 

Killarney Public School

Killarney

1905-1906

Demolished

Porter Building

165 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg

1906

 

J. D. Clark House

511 Stradbrook Avenue, Winnipeg

1906

 

G. H. West House

124 Nassau Street North, Winnipeg

1906

 

Crane-Ordway Building / Lombard Building

93 Lombard Avenue, Winnipeg

1906

 

Canadian Moline Plow Company

Winnipeg

c1906

 

William Grassie House

53 Harvard Avenue, Winnipeg

1907

 

Treherne Presbyterian Church

Treherne

1907-1908

 

N. T. MacMillan House

412 Wardlaw Avenue, Winnipeg

1908

 

Casa Loma Building

644 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg

1909

 

McArthur Building / Childs Building

211 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg

1909

Demolished (1988)

Royal Bank of Canada Building

460 Main Street, Winnipeg

1909

 

Whiting Hardware Building

106 Osborne Street, Winnipeg

1909

 

H. Archibald House

176 Roslyn Road, Winnipeg

1909

 

Campbell Brothers & Wilson Limited

102 Princess Street, Winnipeg

c1910

 

Glengarry Building

290 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg

1910

 

Westminster Presbyterian Church

745 Westminster Avenue, Winnipeg

1910-1912

 

Fort Rouge Methodist Church

525 Wardlaw Avenue, Winnipeg

1910-1911

 

Chatsworth Apartments

535 McMillan Avenue, Winnipeg

1911

 

Trust and Loan Building

173 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg

1911

 

Dingwall Building

62 Albert Street, Winnipeg

1911

 

Robertson Memorial Presbyterian Church

648 Burrows Avenue, Winnipeg

1911

 

YMCA Building

475 Selkirk Avenue, Winnipeg

1911

 

YMCA Building

301 Vaughan Street, Winnipeg

1911-1913

 

John Williams House

2 Ruskin Row, Winnipeg

1912

 

Wesley Hall Annex / Sparling Hall

University of Winnipeg

1912

 

Great West Permanent Loan Company Building

356 Main Street, Winnipeg

1912

Demolished

Guelph Apartments

778 McMillan Avenue, Winnipeg

1912

 

Ashdown House

529 Wellington Crescent, Winnipeg

1913

 

Knox Presbyterian Church

400 Edmonton Street, Winnipeg

1914-1917

 

Children’s Home of Winnipeg

615 Academy Road, Winnipeg

1915-1916

Demolished

Stanley Brock Building

145 Market Avenue, Winnipeg

1916

 

E. S. Popham House

555 River Avenue, Winnipeg

c1916

 

Neil T. MacMillan House

137 Kingsway, Winnipeg

c1918

 

Grosse Isle Consolidated School No. 1975

Grosse Isle, RM of Rosser

1919-1920

 

Home Street Presbyterian Church / Home Street United Church / Home Street Mennonite Church

318 Home Street, Winnipeg

1920

 

Gladstone Public School

Gladstone

1921

 

Marlborough Hotel addition

331 Smith Street, Winnipeg

1921-1923

 

Odd Fellows Home

4025 Roblin Boulevard, Winnipeg

1922

 

St. John’s Presbyterian Church

250 Cathedral Avenue, Winnipeg

1923

 

Riverview Presbyterian Church

360 Oakwood Avenue, Winnipeg

1925

 

R. R. Wilson House

680 Wellington Crescent, Winnipeg

1925

 

Canadian National Institute for the Blind Building

1031 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg

1928

 

Neepawa Collegiate Institute

213 Mountain Avenue, Neepawa

1928

Demolished (1985)

Eastman Kodak Building

287 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg

1930

Demolished

Sources:

Ontario marriage registration, Ancestry.

Birth registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Winnipeg Tribune, 2 June 1899, page 6.

1901 and 1911 Canada censes, Automated Genealogy.

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.

A History of Manitoba: Its Resources and People by Prof. George Bryce, Toronto: The Canadian History Company, 1906.

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

The Leading Financial, Business & Professional Men of Winnipeg, published by Edwin McCormick, Photographs by T. J. Leatherdale, Compiled and printed by Stone Limited, c1913. [copy available at the Archives of Manitoba]

“Tenders,” Manitoba Free Press, 27 February 1928, page 22.

“J. H. G. Russell architecture pioneer, dies,” Winnipeg Free Press, 7 February 1946. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B9]

Obituary [John Gordon Russell], Winnipeg Free Press, 13 July 1983, page 49.

Crescentwood, A History by R. R. Rostecki, Winnipeg: Crescentwood Home Owners Association, 1993.

We thank Randy Rostecki, Grant Klassen, Nathan Kramer, and Robert Hill for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 29 August 2017

Memorable Manitobans

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