Memorable Manitobans: Henry Norlande Ruttan (1848-1925)
Born at Cobourg, Ontario on 21 May 1848, son of Henry Jones Ruttan and Margaret Ruttan, he was educated at Cobourg. He worked as an engineer with the Grand Trunk Railway (1866-1869), Intercolonial Railway (1869-1874), and Canadian Pacific Railway (1874-1877) before working on his own account from 1877 to 1885. He served as Engineer for the City Winnipeg from 1885 to retirement in 1914, after which he was retained by the City as a consulting engineer. He performed the engineering feasibility study for construction of the Shoal Lake Aqueduct. In 1918, he supervised construction of the Provencher Bridge.
Active in military affairs, he served in No. 1 Company, 40th Battalion, during the 1866 Fenian Raid of Ontario. On formation of 90th Battalion, Winnipeg Rifles, he was gazetted Captain of Company B and he served during the North West Rebellion of 1885 under General Middleton. He commanded 90th Battalion from 1895 to 1900 when was placed on a list of Reserve Officers. In 1910, on organization of 100th Regiment of the Winnipeg Grenadiers, he was gazetted to command.
In 1882, he married Andrina Barberie (1847-1941) of Dalhousie, New Brunswick. They had five children: Mary Louise Ruttan (1877-?, wife of H. L. Wethey), Henry Andrew Ruttan, Charles Millidge Ruttan, Francis Norlande Ruttan, and John Douglas Ruttan. He was a member of the AF & AM, Institute of Civil Engineers (London), American Society Civil Engineering (New York), Canadian Society Civil Engineering (President in 1910), Royal Society Arts and Manufacturing, Manitoba Club, Carleton Club, St. Charles Country Club, Winnipeg Automobile Club, Granite Curling Club (President, 1892-1893), Manitoba Curling Association (President, 1893-1894), and the Anglican church.
He died at his Winnipeg residence, 180 West Gate, on 13 October 1925 and was buried in the St. John’s Cathedral Cemetery. His papers are at the Archives of Manitoba.
Birth 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.
A History of Manitoba: Its Resources and People by Prof. George Bryce, Toronto: The Canadian History Company, 1906.
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]
“Brig.-Gen. H. N. Ruttan succumbs early today,” Manitoba Free Press, 13 October 1925, page 1.
“To pay last respects to Brig.-Gen. Ruttan,” Manitoba Free Press, 15 October 1925, page 4.
Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.
Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.
We thank Terry Webber and Rick Mutton for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 12 April 2022