This impressive 28-foot by 44-foot stone church south of Manitou, just passed the town of Kaleida was designed by Winnipeg architect, Charles Wheeler. Built in 1892 for a cost of $6,500 by W. H. Bowler and the construction firm of Kerr and Magee.
The church was originally named Winram Memorial Church in commemoration of W.J. Winram. Born in the Isle-of-Man on 8 January 1838, and the son of shipbuilder, he worked as a mechanical engineer in his father’s shipyard. Upon coming to Canada around 1866 he settled in Simcoe County, Ontario and resided there until May 1878, when he came to Manitoba.
In 1860 he married Catherine Ingersoll and together they had 3 children. He won his first seat in the Manitoba Legislature by acclamation in 1879 and was re-elected or acclaimed at the general elections of 1883, 1886 and 1888. He was also a Speaker of the Legislative Assembly from 1888 until his death.
Upon my arrival at the church which is down a horrid PTH (that’s not surprising in this Province right now) to this well kept church and cemetery, it wasn’t what I was expecting. When I came around the back I found the headstone of a friend’s Dad. She told me today that her parents were also engaged at this church and her Mom grew up not far from here. Her maternal grandparents are buried beside her Dad.
I’m happy I made my way down here. Of course I tried to avoid going back down the PTH and ended up in a maze of gravel roads and pouring rain but with Colton’s keen Snapchat mapping skills, we made it home.
Well, not really but this house would be right smack in the middle of a section of land and of course, I can’t confirm anything with the material that I have here.
I have had permission to photograph this house for some time. I went in the Fall and it was muddy.
So Cade and the kids stopped with me on the way home from Brandon one day and Cade drove in part of the way and I hiked in the rest. I didn’t go into the house but I did wander around as far as the snow would permit to get this tractor and a couple different angles of the house.
While it was the house that got my attention and led me to this old homestead, once I was there it was this barn that I really liked. Its held its own in our harsh Manitoba weather.
When we were driving out, Cade spotted this little rodent in our tire tracks so I got out of the car to chase him away so that we wouldn’t drive over him. I truly think he was blind because I could literally reach out and grab him if I wanted to and I followed him down our tire tracks for some time.
The Belfry School District was established in January 1891 on land donated by local farmer, Warren Belfry from whom the school name was derived.
Five years later, the building was moved to its present location where it remains somehwat stable. The floor is caving in so I did not attempt to enter beyond the front step.
Due to low numbers, the school was closed between June 1940 and January 1945. The school closed permanently in June 1962 and the remaining students were bused to Elva School, Pierson School, or Melita School.
Some of the teachers who worked at Belfry School included: Miss Hope (1907), Miss Wheeler, Miss Rodgers, Miss Carson, Miss Fizzell, Miss Pheonix, Miss Archibald, Miss Strong, Miss Wells, Miss Shands, Olive House, Ruby Fletcher Reddaway (1939-1940), Miss Munro, Melba Dobbyn, Miss Cooper, Miss Stamper, Hazel McLintock, Mrs. Baker, Mrs. Roblin, and Mrs. Betty Pederson (1961-1962).
Back in February, on a beautiful sunny and mild day, I went out. Just my camera and I. It was just what I needed. On my way home I thought I’d check for another place when I decided to check out an old favourite of mine, in the winter.
This house was one of the very first contacts I made and I often think I’d like a re-do of the first shots that I took because of the growth I’ve made in my photography. I may have to put it back on my to-do list.
James was born in Ireland in 1828. In 1848 he immigrated to Ontario where he met Elizabeth. They married in 1850. Elizabeth is said to be the sister of Walt Disney’s Grandfather. James and Elizabeth moved to Manitoba in 1889. James was a wheelwright and Elizabeth wove carpets. Together they had 10 children.
Their son John married Annie and together they had 6 children. In 1902 they built their second home on this land, this stone home. Before the family moved in, Annie painted the kitchen with a high gloss white enamel oil paint. She died a few days later of lead poisoning. This was a devastating loss to the family. For many years their oldest daughther stepped in to help her father raise the younger children with the help of her aunt from Ontario. In 1908 John remarried.
In 1918 John and his second wife retired to the nearby town and John’s son Cliff took over the farm and the old stone home. John helped Cliff on the farm and two years after his retirement, John was killed in a binder accident.
In 1939 Cliff sold the farm and moved to Brandon where he worked as a carpenter and operated the Four Star Theatre at Rivers, Manitoba. Cliff died at 62 years of age.
This beautiful field stone home still stands tall and was occupied up until a few years ago. Rumor has it that the large home is very expensive to heat and decided to move.
Constructed between 1916 and 1917 using day labour, at a cost of about $6,000, this abandoned concrete arch bridge is situated in the RM of Prairie Lakes, Manitoba.
Now over a hundred years old and recently under the extreme pressure of a winter run off, the bridge remains at the edge of their small community and is used as a foot bridge.
The remains of a former concrete culvert bridge sits below it.