Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Islay Mary Colcleugh Sinclair (c1872-1949)

Pioneer.

Born in Mount Forest, Ontario, daughter of James Colcleugh of Ayr, Ontario, she came to Manitoba in 1878, where her father became a pioneer druggist and the first Mayor of Selkirk. After receiving her education at the Waugh’s school for girls, she married Charles C. Sinclair of the Hudson’s Bay Company on 20 October 1898. As a bridge, she relocated to Cumberland House spending 12 years there before moving to Norway House, where her husband was a district officer. A pioneer resident of Manitoba, she was, according to her obituary “believed to have been one of the last living authorities on the ‘bungee’ dialect, a sing-song Indian version of the English language.” Her and her husband shared two children: Moray MacDougall Sinclair and Ramona Sinclair. She died at her Winnipeg home, 875 Ingersoll Street, on 12 February 1949. Her body was taken to Vancouver, British Columbia for burial.

See also:

Backgrounds of the Dialect Called Bungi by Margaret Stobie
MHS Transactions, Series 3, Number 24, 1967-68 Season

Sources:

Marriage registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Pioneer resident of Manitoba dies aged 77,” Winnipeg Free Press, 14 February 1949. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical Scrapbook B10, page 83]

This page was prepared by Sarah Ramsden.

Page revised: 29 October 2019

Memorable Manitobans

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