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Historic Sites of Manitoba: St. John’s Technical High School (Machray Avenue, Winnipeg)

Link to:
Principals | Teachers | Photos & Maps | Sources

Designed by Winnipeg school architect J. B. Mitchell and built between 1910 and 1912, St. John’s Technical High School opened for classes in 1912. Its twin, Kelvin Technical High School, opened around the same time for students from the southern part of the city.

With exteriors of Tyndall stone and red brick, the interior floor plans for the two schools were identical. The basement housed rooms for “technical” instruction in machining, woodworking, electrical work, mechanical drawing, and plumbing; dressing rooms for the gymnasium; the boiler room; four toilets; and two offices for teachers. On the ground floor was the auditorium, gymnasium, eight classrooms, household science room, and four toilets. On the second floor was a balcony overlooking the auditorium, a running track over the gymnasium, five classrooms, library, commercial classroom, typewriting classroom, and rest rooms and toilets for teachers. Finally, the third floor had eight classrooms, chemical and physical laboratories, museum, and two toilets. Altogether, there were 38 rooms where instruction was done. At the time of their construction, the schools were thought to be the most thoroughly modern schools in Canada.

The original St. John’s building served the community into the 1960s. By that time, its layout was seen as obsolete and its structure and mechanical systems needed repairs. Rather than make a large capital investment for renovations, a new St. John’s school was constructed nearby and the old building was demolished in 1967.

Noteworthy alumni of St. John’s High School include Burton Cummings, Monty Hall, Sybil Shack, Louis Slotin, Arnold Spohr, David Steinberg, Adele Wiseman, Abe Yanofsky, and Joe Zuken.

Principals of St. John’s School

Period

Principal

1910-1925

Alexander Charles Campbell (1874-1951)

1925-1952

George Joseph Reeve (1886-1968)

1952-1961

John Elwood Ridd (1896-1986)

1961-1971

Allan J. Ryckman (1910-1982)

1971-1982

Richard Malcolm “Dick” Mutchmor (1928-2000)

Teachers of St. John’s School

Among the teachers of St. John’s High School was James W. Beer.

Photos & Maps

St. Johns High School

St. John’s High School under construction (circa 1911)
Source: Winnipeg School Board, Annual Report 1921, Legislative Library of Manitoba.

St. Johns High School

St. John’s High School (no date)
Source: Winnipeg School Division

Site Location (lat/long): N49.92492, W97.13425
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Kelvin Technical High School (55 Harrow Street, Winnipeg)

Sources:

“Winnipeg’s new technical high schools – Kelvin and St. John’s,” Manitoba Free Press, 22 April 1911, page 52.

We thank the Winnipeg School Division for providing additional information used here.

Information for this page was collected and prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 9 November 2013

Historical Sites of Manitoba

A collection of historic sites in Manitoba compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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