Welcome to the September edition of our 50 in 50 blog series, where we highlight 5 different artifacts from the Transcona Museum's collections every month. There will be a total of 50 artifacts discussed by the time we reach our last post which will be next month in October. This series is done in commemoration of our 50th Opening Anniversary of the Transcona Museum. Following the completion of the blog series in October, the Transcona Museum will attempt to display the majority of the 50 artifacts discussed in our galleries.
#41 - TH72.433.6
City of Transcona Charter
On Saturday, 10 June 1961, the community of Transcona celebrated as the Town officially became a City. Ten of the new city's runners - led by running captain Bill Paulson - carried the charter from the Legislative Building along the 13.5-km course to the official ceremony in Transcona. Crowds of people jammed the intersection of Regent Avenue and Oxford Street that Saturday evening to witness Premier Duff Roblin hand the City Charter to Mayor Tom Copeland while proclaiming Transcona the newest city in Manitoba. Mayor Tom Copeland was one of the most ardent supporters of the town's move to become a city. The proclamation coincided with the community's 50th Golden Jubilee celebrations.
The charter was donated to the Transcona Historical Museum in 1972 by the former City of Transcona following amalgamation with the City of Winnipeg.
#42 - TH69.58.2
"Transcona Silver Jubilee, 1911 - 1936" Book
This historical book was published on the occasion of Transcona's Silver Jubilee celebration in June 1936 by the Transcona Board of Trade. The book contains information on the Town of Transcona's 25 years of progress including sections on prominent people and businesses, schools and local churches, clubs and organizations, as well as important milestones in the community's history.
What's interesting to note is that the jubilee celebration dates for the 25th (1936), the 50th (1961), and the 75th (1986) were incorrect. The dates were based on the inauguration of the Transcona Board of Trade in 1911, rather than the official incorporation of the Town of Transcona a year later in 1912. This error would be corrected for the centenary celebrations in 2012.
#43 - TH84.3.86
Real Estate List, Transcona
This real estate listing from 1910 is a wonderful snapshot of the community as it would have been at the time the Transcona Shops Complex was under construction. At the time, the community would have had a population of approx. 100 people. As of 29 May 1910, the community of Transcona consisted of the following:
27 shacks / houses / cottages
6 houses under construction
1 wounded soldier's house
1 boarding house
1 hardware store
1 drug store
1 butcher shop
1 pool room
1 grocery store
1 general store
1 library (tent)
Below is an image taken from the 1912 Township Map of Transcona by W.J. Christie & Co. The highlighted red areas are the general block locations (as there are no specified lot numbers) for the structures that were present in 1910.
#44 - TH84.3.105
Fire Insurance Plan of Transcona
Fire insurance plans were very detailed maps that provided valuable data to the fire insurance companies on a building's size, its function, and its construction material. All this information was useful to gauge the risk for fire and therefore the ability to quote insurance premiums to customers. This plan dates back to 1923 and consists of one master map of the Transcona community with block numbers and associated maps for each block.
The plans were revised periodically as buildings were torn down, rebuilt, or a new area was developed. The revisions were printed and distributed to the agents to paste in, as can be seen in the image above. The last revision to the plans was in the 1930's.
#45 - TH188.8.131.52
Construction of the Transcona Shops Complex, Photograph
In September 1909, the Grand Trunk Pacific and National Transcontinental Railways began construction of their western repair shops on the open prairie seven miles east of Winnipeg. When completed, the complex would have the capacity to employ an estimated 5,000 workers. Following the arrival of railway workers, real estate developers and merchants, the Town of Transcona rapidly developed. By the time the Transcona Shops officially opened in 1913, Transcona had a population of over 1,600.
This photograph was taken early in the construction phase in 1910 and it depicts workers on top of a building still under construction. The photograph holds the distinction of being one of the earliest images taken of the Transcona Shops from the Transcona Museum Archives.
Come back in October to read about the final artifacts #46 - 50
-----. "Transconans Celebrate As Town Becomes A City". Winnipeg Free Press. 12 June 1961.
Transcona Museum Archives.