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Endangered Top 10
Endangered
Top 10
2019

Jens Munk at Churchill
Field Trip:
Churchill
2020

Manitoba History No. 89
Manitoba
History

No. 89

War Memorials in Manitoba
War
Memorials
in Manitoba

This Old Elevator
This Old
Elevator

Abandoned Manitoba
Abandoned
Manitoba

Memorable Manitobans
Memorable
Manitobans

Historic Sites of Manitoba
Historic Sites
of Manitoba

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Trans-Canada Highway Monument (Eastern Manitoba)

A large boulder marks the spot where the original Trans-Canada Highway crossed the Manitoba-Ontario border. Built by men employed by government relief programs during the Great Depression of the 1930s, the highway in eastern Manitoba was 145½ miles in length, from the intersection of Portage Avenue and Main Street in Winnipeg to Kenora. This portion of the highway opened to vehicle traffic on 2 June 1932 and an official opening ceremony was held on Dominion Day (1 July) 1932. Four days later, the first hitchhikers, a pair of 15-year-old boys from Winnipeg, headed to Kenora on the new highway, allowing themselves two weeks for the return trip.

A metal plaque that was formerly affixed to the side of the boulder has been moved to a tourist information centre about ½ mile to the west. The plaque lists the names of Manitoba and Ontario officials present at the ceremony in 1932. For Manitoba, they were William R. Clubb (Minister of Public Works), Archibald McGillivray (Deputy Minister), Manson A. Lyons (Chief Engineer), and William H. Hunt (District Engineer). For Ontario, they were William Finlayson (Minister of Lands and Forests), C. H. Fullerton (Deputy Minister), J. Sinton (Chief Engineer), and R. T. Lyons (District Engineer). The boulder remains at the overgrown original site beside an abandoned portion of the highway. Also present beside the boulder are two concrete bases for flag poles, presumably for Manitoba and Ontario flags.

A family at the Trans-Canada Highway monument

A family at the Trans-Canada Highway monument (1958)
Source: Doris Ames

Former Trans-Canada Highway monument

Former Trans-Canada Highway monument (June 2019)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Abandoned portion of the Trans-Canada Highway near the commemorative monument

Abandoned portion of the Trans-Canada Highway near the commemorative monument (June 2019)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Trans-Canada Highway commemorative monument beside the entrance to a Manitoba tourism centre

Trans-Canada Highway commemorative monument beside the entrance to a Manitoba tourism centre (June 2019)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Trans-Canada Highway commemorative monument

Trans-Canada Highway commemorative monument (June 2019)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Site Location (lat/long): N49.74080, W95.15349
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Steel Pony Truss Bridge (Brokenhead River, RM of Brokenhead)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Whitemouth River Bridge (Whitemouth River, RM of Whitemouth)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Trans-Canada Garage (Whitemouth, RM of Whitemouth)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Abandoned Manitoba

Sources:

“Trans-Canada Highway to be open June 2 to 6,” Winnipeg Tribune, 1 June 1932, page 3.

“First hitch-hikers start on Trans-Canada Highway,” Winnipeg Tribune, 5 July 1932, page 8.

We thank Doris Ames for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 5 June 2019

Historic Sites of Manitoba

This is a collection of historic sites in Manitoba compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

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Please note that inclusion in this collection does not mean that a particular site has special status or protection. Some sites are on private property and permission must be secured from the owner prior to visiting.

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