Historic Sites of Manitoba: Western Canada Flour Mills / Purity Flour Mills / Maple Leaf Mills (440 Archibald Street, Winnipeg)
In 1905, the Toronto architectural firm of Darling & Pearson collaborated with Winnipeg architect Walter P. Over in the design of a large grain-processing mill for Western Canada Flour Mills, supplementing its existing facilities at Goderich (Ontario) and Brandon. The six-storey brick structure, capped by a sixteen-foot cupola, was one of the tallest structures in St. Boniface, located at 440 Archibald Street, on the east side between Kavanagh and Messier streets. Next to it sat a three-storey brick warehouse where the processed grain was packed and stored prior to shipment. Initially designed to produce 4,000 barrels of flour per day, it would eventually grow into one of the largest grain-processing facilities in Canada. By 1919, the mill produced 5,000 barrels daily and could store 730,000 bushels of grain. Its three shifts of 170 workers, many of them of Polish or Ukrainian descent, kept the mill operating 24 hours a day.
Later names under which the mill operated were Purity Flour Mills (1950s) and Maple Leaf Mills. It closed in February 1981 and was sold to an Australian grain company. Although much of the infrastructure was present in 2002, most of it had been demolished by 2005, although the six-storey portion appears to have survived until 2007. Nothing remains at the site today.
“A mammoth milling plant,” Winnipeg Tribune, 22 July 1905, page 2.
We thank Murray Peterson for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough and Robert Hill.
Page revised: 24 January 2018
Back to top of page