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Memorable Manitobans: James Wesley Umphrey (1864-1948)


Born at Uxbridge, Ontario on 4 June 1864, he came to Manitoba with his parents in 1881. Eventually settling in the village of Miami, where he worked as an agent, he served as the Reeve of the RM of Thompson from 1909 to 1914. The family moved to Winnipeg in 1915 where he worked for the implement jobbing firm of F. N. McDonald and Company. By the time of his death, he had reached management level.

On 20 February 1889, he married Susanna Mclean (1862-1949) in Winnipeg. They had five children: Susan Beatrice Umphrey (b 1890, wife of George Douglas), Sarah Alma Umphrey (b 1892, wife of A. Lindsay), Effie Maude Umphrey (b 1895, wife of Franklin N. McDonald and J. Gordon Ritchie), Hattie Alberta Umphrey (b 1898, wife of A. G. Gronow), and Edwin Jefferson Umphrey. An avid sportsman, he was President of the Elmwood Curling Club. He also held memberships in the Manitoba Life Members’ Association, Independent Order of Odd Fellows (No. 34, Miami Lodge), and the Masons (Past Master of the Midlothian Lodge).

He died in July 1948 and was buried in a family plot at Elmwood Cemetery.


Birth and marriage registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

1901 Canada census [Wesley Humphrey], Automated Genealogy.

“Manitoba pioneer J. Umphrey dies,” Winnipeg Tribune, July 1948. [Manitoba Legislative Library, Biographical scrapbook B10, page 28]

“Mrs. J. W. Umphrey funeral held,” Winnipeg Free Press, 8 June 1949, page 23.

This page was prepared by Sarah Ramsden, Nathan Kramer, and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 5 January 2014

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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