Historic Sites of Manitoba: Crane-Ordway Building / Lombard Building (93 Lombard Avenue, Winnipeg)

This five-storey brick building on Lombard Avenue in Winnipeg was designed by local architect John Hamilton Gordon Russell and built in 1906. Tendered in late June, construction was completed by the year’s end at a cost of around $50,000. Commissioned by the Crane & Ordway Company of St. Paul, Minnesota (granted Letters Patent at Minnesota in 1892), the firm applied for an operating license under the Foreign Corporations Act on 18 December 1907 and was granted rights on 25 January 1908. The $200,000 capital stock company was licensed to R. T. Crane (President) and A. M. Gilbert (Vice-President & Secretary) of Chicago, Illinois, along with St. Paul, Minnesota businessmen L. P. Ordway (General Manager & Treasurer) and S. S. Rogers. All four of the men served as Directors of the Winnipeg-based operations.

Behind the primary five-storey warehouse, which measured 100 feet by 66 feet, was another structure owned by the company, a building that was 66 feet in length and 40 feet wide. In 1911, the site underwent $35,150 in modifications and expansion. The corporation expanded its capital stock value to $1 million in 1912. They supplied pipe valves, fittings, steam boilers, gas engines, pneumatic water supply systems, along with heating, plumbing, and threshing materials. For at least a decade after its construction, this warehouse site was both the firm’s Canadian headquarters and distribution centre for all operations between the Great Lakes and the Rocky Mountains.

It became a municipally-designated historic building in 2018.

Front view of the Crane-Ordway Building

Front view of the Crane-Ordway Building (circa 1915)
Source: Winnipeg Tribune, 25 September 1915, page 50.

Crane-Ordway Building

Crane-Ordway Building (July 1977) by Henry Kalen
Source: Henry Kalen fonds, University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections

Front view of the Crane-Ordway Building

Front view of the Crane-Ordway Building (October 2016)
Source: Nathan Kramer

Rear view of the Crane-Ordway Building

Rear view of the Crane-Ordway Building (October 2016)
Source: Nathan Kramer

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.89561, W97.13430
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: John Hamilton Gordon Russell (1863-1946)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Municipally Designated Historic Sites


“Tenders,” Manitoba Free Press, 28 June 1906, page 2.

“The Crane Ordway Co.” Manitoba Free Press, 6 December 1906, page 24.

“Winnipeg and her suburbs,” Winnipeg Tribune, 15 December 1906, page 17.

“Crane & Ordway,” Winnipeg Tribune, 21 December 1907, page 18.

“More big claims,” Winnipeg Tribune, 30 December 1908, page 11.

“Crane & Ordway,” Winnipeg Tribune, 25 September 1915, page 50.

“Building permits,” Winnipeg Tribune, 6 January 1911, page 5.

Companies Office corporation documents (CCA 0059), Crane and Ordway Company, Archives of Manitoba.

We thank Darryl Resch for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 29 October 2022

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