Prairie Icons Project

Historic prairie architecture is disappearing. That famous sentinel, the grain elevator, is being replaced by concrete terminals. The hip roof barn of calendars and cards is giving way to prefabricated metal buildings. Vinyl is covering historic facades.

As with the Prairie Churches Project, this was a collaborative effort with the J. M. Kaplan Fund of New York, the Thomas Sill Foundation and the Historic Resources Branch of the Province of Manitoba. Kaplan and Sill contributed $65,950 and $63,450, respectively, to the project for a total of $129,400. tTe Historic Resources Branch provided technical assistance and the allocation of existing budgets for heritage preservation.

The selection of icons funded was subject to a proactive process that sought to identify the most unique architectural structures of a particular type in rural Manitoba. Barns, railway stations, bridges, grain elevators and so on were eligible for consideration on a matching basis.

The following structures were funded:


Portage Railway Station


$15,000

 
Canadian Pacific Railway station, Portage la Prairie.

Canadian Pacific Railway Station, Portage la Prairie.

Darlingford War Memorial Park

Darlingford War Memorial Park, on the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I

Inglis Elevators National Historic Site

Inglis Elevators National Historic Site, bus tourists


Gimli Dancehall


15,000

 

Inglis Elevators National Historic Site


10,000

 

Commonwealth AIR Training Museum, Brandon


10,000

 

Neubergthal Housebarn


10,000

 

Display Building II, Brandon


10,000

 

White Family House Museum, Carberry


10,000

 

Tergesen General Store, Gimli


8,000

 

Carberry Heritage District


8,000

 

Hans Erickson Log House, Lac Du Bonnet


7,500

 

Emerson Court House


6,000

 

Darlingford War Memorial Park


5,105

 

Gardenton Bridge


4,000

 

Willow Plains School, Sarto


3,800

 

Angusville Heritage Hall


2,300

 

Log Repair Workshop, Austin


2,000

 

Swistun Family Boodas


1,695

 

Rhodes Community Hall, Dauphin


1,000

 

Total


 


$129,400


 

 

Manitoba’s rural architecture is under-appreciated and, therefore, threatened. This project has helped to raise awareness of that threat by focussing on the best examples for preservation.