Historic Sites of Manitoba: The Pas Community Building and Court House / Sam Waller Museum (306 Fischer Avenue, The Pas)
In 1916, the Town of The Pas was named the seat of the Northern Judicial District, four years after Manitoba’s northern boundary was extended from 50° 50' to the 60th parallel. George Nelson Taylor, the first architect in town, designed a two-storey brick structure to serve as a court house. It was unique among provincial court houses because the second floor was to be used exclusively as a public assembly hall separate from the main floor courtroom.
Begun in 1916 and completed the following year by Snyder Brothers of Portage la Prairie, it became the centre of the town’s social activities. The building closed after new court facilities opened in 1982. With strong local support, the municipal government acquired the building from the provincial government and made it the home of the Sam Waller Museum. The building, northern Manitoba’s oldest standing brick building, is now a provincially-designated historic site.
A commemorative plaque in front of the museum was erected in 1991 by the Manitoba Heritage Council, along with a plaque for the East and West Mossy Portages.
Floor plans of The Pas Court House showing the second floor at top and the main floor at bottom (circa 1930)
Source: Manitoba Culture, Heritage and Recreation.
Sam Waller Museum (July 2021)
Source: George Penner
Rear view of the Sam Waller Museum (July 2017)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough
Site Coordinates (lat/long): N53.82327, W101.25263
denoted by symbol on the map above
Memorable Manitobans: George Nelson Taylor (?-?)
Memorable Manitobans: Samuel “Sam” Waller (?-1978)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Beautiful Plains County Court House (282 Hamilton Street, Neepawa)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Brandon Court House (1104 Princess Avenue, Brandon)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Dauphin Law Courts Building (River Avenue West, Dauphin)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Minnedosa Court House (70 Third Avenue SW, Minnedosa)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Morden Court House and Gaol (Wardrop Street, Morden)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Winnipeg Law Courts (Broadway and Kennedy Street, Winnipeg)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: East and West Mossy Portages Monument (Fischer Avenue, The Pas)
Historic Sites of Manitoba: Provincially Designated Historic Sites
Sam Waller Museum
The Early Court Houses of Manitoba by R. R. Rostecki, Parks Canada Manuscript Report No. 285, 1977. [Copy at Legislative Library of Manitoba, RBC FC3362 Ros]
The Pas Community Building and Court House, Manitoba Culture, Heritage and Recreation, 1988.
We thank George Penner for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 28 December 2021
Historic Sites of Manitoba
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