Historic Sites of Manitoba: St. Mary’s Convent School (Sifton, RM of Dauphin)

A three-storey brick building at Sifton, in the Rural Municipality of Dauphin, was built in 1921 as a convent and school for local Catholic children. Heavily damaged in a fire on 24 July 1924, the ruins were abandoned until 1935 when the property was purchased by Archbishop Alfred Arthur Sinnott, restored, and turned over to a Polish branch of the Benedictine nuns for use as an elementary school. It was destroyed by fire in 1954 and the nearby church was likewise destroyed on 15 February 1955. The proceeds of insurance were sufficient to rebuild the church but not the school.

Among the nuns who taught at St. Mary’s Convent School, Sifton School, and Wycliffe School were Sister Mathilda (1933-1935, grades 11-12), Sister Claicdia Kubas (1934-1935), Sister Louise Holub (1934-1935), Sister Zita Siwak (1935-1936, grades 9-11), Sister Leocadia Wozny (1935-1936), Sister Ethelburga Kost (1936-1938, grades 1-9), Sister Rosalia Boguski (1937-1939, grades 1-3), Sister Eleanor Grzymalowski (1942-1951), Sister Alfred Chwalitski (1952-1953, grade 1), Sister Boniface Zintne (1949-1950, grade 1), Sister Caroline Siwak (1950-1952), Sister Alfreda (1950-1952), Sister Hiltrude Kolodyazuk (1948-1952), Sister Gerarda Pura (1954-1955, grades 1-2), Sister Augustine Wenet (1955-1956, grade 1), Sister Scholastica Pilikowski, Sister Isidore, Sister Jerome Slugowcki, Sister Melania Czerkowski, Sister Callista Kaszur, Sister Pauline Angielski, Sister Julianna Kwolik, Sister Ursula Manczur, Sister Christina Wenges, Sister Bernadette Kozdeba (1953-1956), Sister Pelagia Medynski (1952-1953), Sister Eustacia Balawayder, Sister Fulgentia Wolkowski, and Sister Clemintine.

St. Mary’s Convent School

St. Mary’s Convent School (no date)
Source: Sifton Then and Now by Elsie Lesyk, page 117

St. Mary’s Convent School

St. Mary’s Convent School (no date)
Source: Diane Yates

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N51.36219, W100.14127
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Sifton School No. 1009 (Sifton, RM of Dauphin)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Wycliffe School No. 1564 (Sifton, RM of Dauphin)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Second Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church and Cemetery (Sifton, RM of Dauphin)


Sifton Then and Now: A Reminiscence of the Pioneer Era by Elsie Lesyk, Dauphin, 1992, pages 116-117, 184-185.

We thank Diane Yates for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 20 May 2023

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