Historic Sites of Manitoba: Brown Block (323-327 Garry Street, Winnipeg)
Located on the east side of Garry Street in Winnipeg, this three-storey printing and publishing warehouse was commissioned by James Brunless Brown (1876-1947) of the James B. Brown Company. Brown (who lived at Brown House), began operations under that name in 1899 and initially maintained a presence at 214 Notre Dame Avenue.
Architectural plans for this building were provided by John Schwab and built by contractor Louis Pachal in 1903. The pentagonal structure measured 19.5 feet parallel to the Argyle Block, 60.5 feet backing onto the Oxford Hotel, and Garry frontage in excess of 44.75 feet. With construction underway, an additional storey was added to the final design, with total construction costs being about $9,000. The ground level contained three commercial suites, including one for Brown's business, and the upper two floors each outfitted as an apartment with five suites per level. Brown opened his new premises in late October 1903.
In 1912, Brown expanded operations to the Brown Block on Home Street.
This Brown Block was later demolished and replaced with the present (2022) structure at 325 Garry Street.
Photos & Coordinates
“When a man talks business [ad],” Winnipeg Tribune, 29 November 1899, page 3.
“Job Printing [James B. Brown],” Winnipeg Tribune, 15 September 1900, page 5.
City of Winnipeg Building Permit 273/1903, City of Winnipeg Archives.
City of Winnipeg Building Permit 702/1903, City of Winnipeg Archives.
“Warehouse sold on Notre Dame,” Winnipeg Tribune, 19 September 1903, page 6.
“Moved into new office,” Winnipeg Tribune, 27 October 1903, page 5.
“New tailoring business,” Winnipeg Tribune, 29 October 1903, page 16.
“James Brown's Block,” Manitoba Free Press, 14 November 1903, page 18.
“James B. Brown dies in hospital,” Winnipeg Tribune, 24 September 1947, page 48.
Companies Office corporation documents (CCA 0059), 88J - James B. Brown Company Limited, GR6427, Archives of Manitoba.
Henderson’s Winnipeg and Brandon Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.
Preparation of this page was supported, in part, by the Gail Parvin Hammerquist Fund of the City of Winnipeg.
We thank Jordan Makichuk for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.
Page revised: 16 October 2022