Historic Sites of Manitoba: Ryerson United Church / Ryerson School No. 360 / Maskawata Post Office (RM of Wallace-Woodworth)
A concrete monument in the Rural Municipality of Wallace-Woodworth, unveiled in July 1980, commemorates Ryerson Church, which operated from 1883 to 1939, Ryerson School No. 360, which operated from 1886 to 1967, and Maskawata Post Office, which operated from 1884 to 1939. Next to the monument is a bell which probably came from Ryerson School. Records for the church are held by the United Church Archives.
Among the teachers of Ryerson School were Robert Goodwin, Mr. J. E. Lane, Mr. Clayton, Miss Patrick, Mrs. William Cochrane, Nellie Henrietta “Nell” Koester (1929-1931, wife of Donald Hood Slimmon), Ethel Catherine Edwards (1931-1933), Lillian Tesley McKenzie (1934-1935), Florence Aitken (1937-1938), Mrs. P. M. Cairns (1940-1941), Elizabeth Jane Wilson (1941-1942), Susanne Fehr (1942-1943), Mary Findlay Stalker (1943), Johanna Coulthard (1944), Myrtle Cook (1944), Lucille Ruth Irwin (1944-1947), Dorothy Ellen Archibald Smith (1947-1948, 1951), Margaret Frame (1948-1950), George Ivan McBurney (1950), L. M. Budz (1951), Shirley Elizabeth Fisher (1951-1953), Margaret Bernice Johnston (1958-1961), Inez Madeline Iverson (1961-1962), Marion Myrta Douglas (1962-1964), Patricia Lorraine Lonsdale (1964-1965), and Winnie Steen (?-?).
The postmasters at Maskawata were D. McCallum (1884-1904), William T. Cowing (1905-1924), and May Orphant Cowing (1924-1939). The Cowings served in the position, using the Sloan family residence as the the post office, until Rural Route #1 was established and delivery to mailboxes at the site commenced. The Sloan farmhouse and ancillary buildings were derelect by the 1960s and were removed in the 1970s.
One Hundred Years in the History of the Rural Schools of Manitoba: Their Formation, Reorganization and Dissolution (1871-1971) by Mary B. Perfect, MEd thesis, University of Manitoba, April 1978.
Ox Trails to Blacktop by Oak Lake History Committee, 1982. [Manitoba Legislative Library, F 5649.O23 Oxt]
Manitoba School Records Collection (GR 1811), Ryerson School District No. 360 Daily Registers, Archives of Manitoba.
“Lenore news,” Hamiota Echo, 10 July 1980, page 11.
Post Offices and Postmasters, Library and Archives Canada.
Obituary [Nell Slimmon], Brandon Sun, 2 January 1997, page 10.
We thank Kurt Dorward and Trevor Slimmon for providing additional information used here.
Page revised: 20 March 2022