Historic Sites of Manitoba: Kildonan Industrial Home for Women / Sunset Lodge / Sunrise Youth Hostel (2281 Main Street, Winnipeg)
This location on River Lot 25 in what was once the Rural Municipality of Kildonan was acquired in early 1911 by the Salvation Army’s (SA) Winnipeg-based leadership in response to the campaigning of Juvenile Court Judge Thomas Mayne Daly. They began the process to establish an industrial home for wayward women and girls found guilty of minor or moral offences by Provincial Courts, Police Courts, and Juvenile Courts, rather than see them sent to local gaols. Prior to this, the SA already operated an Industrial Home at 220 Arlington Street, on the grounds of the original Grace Hospital, as well as a Detention Home / Detention Home School for minors, though both with much smaller capacity.
This site was bordered by Main Street on the west, the Red River on the east, and what is now the northern edge of the Kildonan Park Golf Course on the south. Architectural plans were drawn up by Salvation Army architect Major Gideon Miller of Toronto, Ontario. Project preparation began in the summer of 1911, with construction on the $100,000 project overseen by contractor Mr. McBain. The imposing four-storey structure was built of red brick and masonry elements, and was a landmark presence in the area. Upon completion, it boasted steam heating throughout as well as its own water and sewage systems, both housed in the basement. The final cost for the six acres of land and structure itself was $48,497.95, with the remaining funds used to equip and furnish the facility. Initial financing was provided, in part, by matching $15,000 provincial and city grants, as well as over $3,000 in private donations.
The Kildonan Industrial Home for Women was formally opened on 15 May 1912, with the event attended by many Salvation Army officers, including Commissioner David M. Rees, Chief Secretary Mapp, Colonel Gaskin, Brigadier Burditt, and the SA’s Winnipeg No. 1 Band. Local notables in attendance included Lieutenant-Governor Douglas C. Cameron, Premier Rodmond P. Roblin, Winnipeg Mayor Richard D. Waugh, Kildonan Reeve Samuel R. Henderson, and Reverend Hugh Hamilton of the nearby Kildonan Presbyterian Church who dedicated the building. The facility would be known by a plethora of names including the Salvation Army Industrial Home, Industrial Home for Women, Kildonan Home for Girls, Kildonan Industrial Home, Kildonan Girls’ Industrial Home, and other variations thereof, especially following the 1914 municipal split into the Municipality of West Kildonan. Though the site became part of the Municipality of Old Kildonan in 1921, the name did not change accordingly, often still carrying over the West Kildonan name references.
Staff were lodged in a separate residence known as Hope Cottage. Also located on the property was a caretaker’s bungalow, in addition to cultivated acreage for gardening and recreational green space. The Industrial Home itself had quarters for 48 inmates who were overseen by a Superintendent and attended by a staff of female officers lead by a Matron. In addition to moral instruction, those incarcerated were taught an array of skills, including gardening, home-making, needlework (sewing & knitting), as well as reading and writing of the English language. By early 1914, of the almost 50 females admittees, 36 were under 20 years of age, with the youngest being 14. The total population was always in flux, with census counts detailing an inmate count of 30 as of the 1916 census and 37 in the 1921 census. The 1926 census records show an inmate count of 35, including seven mothers, plus their infants and young children. The age of those committed varied from teenagers through women in their sixties.
In 1920s, the plaster ceilings were replaced with metal ceiling tiles, and a fire alarm system with hoses was installed. By 1927, Hope Cottage had been enlarged and converted for other uses. It remained in operation until the province assumed responsibility for the facility. Early 1931 saw the building undergo $4,285 in renovations and a further $1,855 in furnishings prior of re-opening as Sunset Lodge, a retirement home for women. It was officially re-opened on 17 April 1931 by Alice Wylie Bruce (wife of Premier John Bracken) and Winnipeg Mayor Ralph H. Webb. Other noted Salvation Army notables in attendance included Dr. Mary Whittacker (Head of the Grace Hospital), Colonel Henry G. Miller, and Commissioner Henry. Quarters for 50 women were available and later increased to almost 60. The Sunset Lodge name was also used at several other SA retirement homes across the country. Around 1968, the Salvation Army sold the building and property to the Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC) for $140,000, though it remained in operation until 1970 while the Salvation Army commissioned a new facility to replace former capacity here. That new SA complex, known as Golden West Centennial Lodge at 811 School Road (in St. James), opened in 1970. The MPC acquired the property as part of their envisioned Metro’s inner beltway.
After serving as a retirement residence for 39 years, its last year would prove to be its highest occupancy. To accomodate the high number of young seasonal travellers, the provincial government’s Department of Youth and Education leased the premises from the MPC for $1 and sponsored a project to use the building as a youth hostel. The former Sunset Lodge was re-opened as Sunrise Youth Hostel. This decision was protested, unsuccessfully, by the local Old Kildonan Municipal Council along with a petition of 150 local residents who feared the choice would harm their community’s image. The hostel operated from mid-June through the September Long Weekend and was managed by Arlene Scherbain and Gary Scherbain. Bedding and breakfast was provided to lodgers for $1 per day (to a maximum limit of three days). Roughly 5,000 transient male youths stayed here over the season’s duration, with averages of 50-60 per night. Female travellers were accommodated via Young Womens’ Christian Association (YWCA) facilities elsewhere. Of the roughly 80 percent who did not or were unable to pay the daily fare, the province’s Committee Representing Youth Problems Today (CRYPT) program paid the bill. Public tenders for demolition and/or removal of the present structures, including the Industrial Home along with five other dwelling units, were called in late October 1970. The site was subsequently cleared over the next four months.
The land was eventually used as part of the inner beltway, opening as the first segment of the Chief Peguis Trail between Main Street and Henderson Highway, with the former buildings location now underneath the western approaches to the Kildonan Settlers Bridge.
Photos & Coordinates
Death registrations [Maraget Jane Chatterson], Manitoba Vital Statistics.
“Council recommend grant of $15,000,” Manitoba Free Press, 28 March 1911, page 16.
“Women’s Industrial home for Winnipeg,” Winnipeg Tribune, 19 June 1911, page 1.
“New salvation army building,” Manitoba Free Press, 20 June 1911, page 17.
“Brigadier and Mrs. Burditt to make adieux tomorrow,” Manitoba Free Press, 25 November 1911, page 5.
“Industrial home opening,” Winnipeg Tribune, 12 April 1912, page 8.
“Salvationist Chief coming,” Manitoba Free Press, 10 May 1912, page 32.
“Industrial home in Kildonan opened,” Manitoba Free Press, 16 May 1912, page 32.
“Personalities [Before returning to Toronto ...],” The War Cry, 25 May 1912, page 9.
“The Women’s Industrial Home opened at Kildonan, Manitoba,” The War Cry, 1 June 1912, page 1.
“The Women’s Industrial Home,” The War Cry, 1 June 1912, pages 8-9 & 11.
“The city today [Industrial Home],” Winnipeg Tribune, 6 July 1912, page 5.
“Salvation Army budget of news,” Winnipeg Tribune, 14 August 1912, page 8.
“Salvation officers go East,” Manitoba Free Press, 10 October 1912, page 28.
“General Booth to arrive tomorrow,” Manitoba Free Press, 7 November 1913, page 10.
“Social work of Salvationists,” Winnipeg Tribune, 17 March 1914, page 3.
“Saving frail humanity is this Home's work,” Manitoba Free Press, 29 January 1916, page 32.
“Police Matrons are appointed,” Manitoba Free Press, 30 December 1916, page 5.
“City and District [Policewoman now on duty],” Manitoba Free Press, 1 January 1917, page 5.
“Personalia [Canada West - Two Police Matrons ...],” The War Cry, 20 January 1917, pages 8 and 9.
“23 Army cadets get commissions,” Winnipeg Tribune, 17 April 1917, page 3.
“Civic grants approved,” Manitoba Free Press, 3 August 1917, page 29.
“Salvation Army launching drive,” Manitoba Free Press, 7 September 1918, page 11.
“The Citizens of Winnipeg and the Salvation Army Appeal,” Manitoba Free Press, 30 September 1918, page 7.
“Deaths and Funerals [Ensign Maggie Chatterson],” Manitoba Free Press, 16 January 1919, page 8.
“2 wards escape industrial home,” Winnipeg Tribune, 2 June 1919, page 5.
“Inmates of Salvation Army Industrial Home live in peace like one big, contented family,” Manitoba Free Press, 22 April 1922, page 19.
“Christmas Eve marked by seasonable treats,” Manitoba Free Press, 25 December 1924, page 8.
“More Salvation Army hostels are planned,” Manitoba Free Press, 28 December 1925, page 4.
“Salvation Army officer pays a farewell call,” Winnipeg Tribune, 20 November 1925, page 5.
“Industrial Home girls bid Commandant farewell,” Manitoba Free Press, 18 January 1927, page 3.
“Winnipeg benefits,” Winnipeg Tribune, 17 May 1928, page 3.
“McKerchar to represent city at convention,” Winnipeg Tribune, 14 February 1931, page 3.
“New Salvation Army Home for Aged,” Winnipeg Free Press, 11 April 1931, page 17.
“Clubs [The Kildonan Eventide Home],” Winnipeg Tribune, 13 April 1931, page 6.
“Aged women’s home is officially opened,” Winnipeg Free Press, 18 April 1931, page 3.
“Sunset Lodge,” The War Cry, 9 January 1932, page 6.
“White way Beltway? Nobody seems to know,” Winnipeg Tribune, 16 November 1968, page 41.
“‘Haven’ to get trial,” Winnipeg Free Press, 24 April 1970, pages 1 and 6.
“4,000 youths may stop here,” Winnipeg Free Press, 17 April 1970, page 22.
“‘Hippie Haven’ hacked,” Winnipeg Free Press, 22 April 1970, page 4.
“Miller defends youth hostel,” Winnipeg Tribune, 24 April 1970, page 7.
“Salvation Army drive started for $240,000,” Winnipeg Free Press, 2 May 1970, page 7.
“Couple celebrate 72nd anniversary,” Winnipeg Tribune, 25 May 1970, page 8.
“230 young men stay at hostel,” Winnipeg Free Press, 27 June 1970, page 9.
“Brisk opening week for Sunrise Hostel,” Selkirk Enterprise, 1 July 1970, page 2.
“Youth hostel held open house Sunday,” Winnipeg Free Press, 29 July 1970, page 23.
“Sunrise Youth Hostel provides for wayfarers,” Winnipeg Free Press, 1 August 1970, New Leisure page 11.
“Medical aid clinic a highlight of ’70,” Winnipeg Free Press, 23 September 1970, page 3.
“Public foots the bill for Crypt-ical activities,” Winnipeg Free Press, 1 October 1970, page 18.
“Ex-hostel Director opens lecture series,” Winnipeg Free Press, 14 October 1970, page 31.
“The Metropolitan Corporation of Greater Winnipeg - Transportation Division - Invitation to tender [...],” Winnipeg Free Press, 17 October 1970, page 61.
“Would avoid hospital,” Winnipeg Free Press, 13 February 1971, page 8.
“It happened here,” by Edith Paterson, Winnipeg Free Press, 9 October 1976, New Leisure Saturday Magazine page 4.
“Golden West Centennial Lodge,” Winnipeg Free Press, 29 October 1988, page 12.
Committee Representing Youth Problems Today (CRYPT), Junior League of Winnipeg fonds, Archives of Manitoba.
History, Golden West Centennial Lodge.
Henderson’s Winnipeg and Brandon Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.
This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.
Page revised: 3 July 2020