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Memorable Manitobans: William Wellband (1846-1914)

Click to enlargeBoot and shoe merchant.

Born at Spalding, England on 12 July 1846, son of Thomas Wellband and Catherine Rust, he learned the boot and shoe making trade from his father. In 1868 he emigrated to Canada and settled at Peterborough, Ontario. He later enlisted as a member of the Nintieth Ontario Rifles under Colonel Scott, which came to Manitoba in 1871 as part of the Second Red River Expedition. He served for eighteen months, the last twelve months of which he was the regimental boot and shoe maker. He was discharged at Winnipeg and purchased a lot on Main Street, near Notre Dame, where he erected a building and established the first boot and shoe store in Winnipeg.

In 1890 he married Ellen Storker, widow of William Storker. They had no children. He was a member of the AF & AM Ancient Landmark Lodge and Central Congregational Church. He died at Winnipeg on 12 December 1914 and was buried in St. John’s Cemetery.


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.

Death registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Pioneer merchant died on Saturday”, Manitoba Free Press, 14 December 1914, page 9.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 3 April 2010

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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

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