1880 Alexander Avenue (1)
Two Murals at one location: (l) 'Patterson's Barn Dance'; (r) 'Tribute to Stephenson'.
Location: S side at Alexander and Dee 'T' intersection; West Face
Occupant: Norwest on Alexander Resource Centre
Artist(s): Sarah Collard (Collard Creations)
Sponsors: Take Pride Winnipeg!
Commentary for 'Patterson's Barn Dance' (photo 2 and 4)
With the development of the Canadian National Railway in 1867, settlers travelled to the area and
formed a community which later became known as Brooklands, Manitoba. Some of its most
notable accomplishments were the Patterson's Ranch House, The Brooklands Speedway,
Stevenson Airfield, Brooklands Voluntary Fire Department, the Red School, the Ukrainian
Orthodox Church, the change in Privy Laws and the many Scottish, Ukrainian and Aboriginal
residents who made this community unique. Patterson's Dance Barn hosted many big names
such as Burton Cummings (on left) as well as many gospel and country bands such as Andy de
Jarlis, Don Reynolds and Ferlin Husky (center in white). It was a popular gathering place for
many young people especially during the 1940's and 50's. Leading the Carnival parade is
Speedway driver Don Guida in 1969 and the 1970 Beauty Queen. They are followed by the
Volunteer Fire Department in 1952. For emergencies there is an outhouse located behind the
barn, referencing the notable improvement in privy laws which Brooklands was noted for. In the
background lies the town with its characteristic 'shanty' houses giving off smoke that hangs in
the cold prairie sky. From left to right is the Red School, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church,
residential houses, J. Mroz (blacksmith) and the Canadian Bank of Commerce on Logan.
Stevenson flies above.
Description of photographs used in the mural:
Patterson's Ranch House - The Red Barn. This was located just North of Logan
Avenue on Keewatin Street, before it was named and painted red. The Red Barn was known
throughout the city for its lively times and well known country and western performers: Del
Genthon and his popular CJRC Grainbelters, Wilf Carter and Hank Snow. The Red Barn in its
final years became a three floor Bingo Hall until its demise in the 1980s. A license was issued on
June 13th 1938 to Mr. B. A. Patterson of Patterson's Stables to conduct dances on his property at
Keewatin and Logan. At the time a letter to the Manitoba Tax Commission from the Village
Administrator stated "We understand that a charge of 35 cents is made for admission. They had a
good-sized crowd in attendance every Saturday night. Certain conditions had to be made to the
building due to its popularity and crowded conditions. In 1947 charges were made of
discrimination against a colored person. There were inevitable fights and brawls that
accompanied any busy dance serving liquor."
The Brooklands Speedway - (located to the northwest of Brooklands off Oak Point
Highway, near Selkirk Avenue) was well known in Western Canada. In 1963 one Stock car race
meet saw 4,640 spectators. Racer is Don Guida in 1969 with owner Ernie Johnson's name on the
Train - from the museum. It is a replica of an original, early train 1867-90.
Stevenson Airfield - plane flying above to symbolize Captain Frederick Joseph
Stevenson who was named Canada's first bush pilot in 1926. He was known for opening up the
north (to fly-in reserves) but unfortunately died early in 1928 on a flight into The Pas,
Brooklands Voluntary Fire Department - 1965
the Red School, (Krawchyk School Today)
the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Brooklands
Privy - In 1957 sanitary sewers and watermains were installed on the remaining streets
in Brooklands. Resident water meters were installed for $28.00. These replaced the common
outhouse or privy.
Burton Cummings -1960's - the Early Years,
Ferlin Husky - 1964
Beauty Queen on a Ford Thunderbird convertible - Brooklands used to have an
annual carnival organized by the Kinsmen and later by the community club. At one time it was
one of the largest in the Winnipeg area. Carnival Queen Debbie Kohler is shown in 1970.
residential houses -Ada Street water pails in 1942.
Mrs. Tataryn and Bill Jr. on Elgin Street (Mom and baby crossing the street). The
child looks toward the blacksmith (J. Mroz).
Canadian Bank of Commerce on Logan - 1906
dancing from 1950's
Commentary on 'Tribute to Stephenson' (photos 3 and 5):
This is a tribute to Stevenson, the bush pilot who courageously opened up remote communities by
delivering heavy cargo to them when nobody else would. Stevenson is seen unloading the plane
from Fort Churchill, enabling mothers to feed their children. The original Stevenson airport is
depicted above and an aboriginal teepee is seen to the right, referencing a Northern Manitoba
Reserve. The Brookside Cemetery is where many heroes rest including Stevenson. After World
War II, many veterans were buried here as well as early settlers- which it became famous for.
The 'Brooklands Cemetary Motor Bus' is seen in the bottom right pointing to its historical roots
(1915). In a way, Stevenson turned the many casualties of war into victory for Aboriginal people.
The Speedway has also been placed in the top below the airport landing strip giving meaning to
the early immigrant advertisement "Fruitful Manitoba".
Description of the photographs used in the mural:
Captain Frederick Joseph Stevenson - December 2, 1896 - January 5, 1928
Located in Field of Honour Section, Lot 150A, Brookside Cemetery, Winnipeg, MB.
Stevenson attended Kelvin High School and later Wesley College. In 1917 at age 19, he flew for
the Royal Flying Corps in England where he began pilot training. He was awarded the
Distinguished Flying Cross and was decorated with the Belgian and French Croix de Guerre.
After the war, Stevenson was one of many Royal Air Force pilots who ferried diplomats and
other officials between London and Paris. After this, he began a short stint as a sea pilot in
northern Russia. After returning to Canada in 1920, he went back to Winnipeg where he joined
the Canadian Aircraft Company. With the company, he flew as part of flying exhibitions at
small-town fairs in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. In 1926 he moved on to Western Canada
Airways and became one of Canada's first bush pilots, transporting air freight to the North. By
the following year, Stevenson was regularly transporting material and equipment from Cache
Lake to Fort Churchill on Hudson Bay. On January 5, 1928 during a test flight in the Pas,
Manitoba, the engine of his Fokker aircraft failed and his plane went into a spin at a low altitude
and fell onto a quiet residential street and he was killed. Captain Frederick Stevenson is buried at
Brookside Cemetery, facing southwest toward the airfield that would later be named after him
(Stevenson's Airfield). On May 27, 1928 the City of Winnipeg and the Municipality of St. James
opened the new airdrome. Five hundred people attended the opening where Stevenson's mother
unveiled a marble plaque that read: "This airdrome is named Stevenson Airdrome in dedication to
the late Captain F. J. Stevenson of Winnipeg, Canada's Premier Commercial Pilot. The field
eventually became known as Stevenson Field which was later renamed Winnipeg International
- an early photo of Stevenson Field in 1928
Photo - F.J Stevenson flies newspapers to Red Lake in 1927. (Fort Churchill is written
on side of plane)
Brookside Cemetery - modern photo of the field of honour 1-150A.
Native Aboriginal Woman Feeding her Children - from Hudson Bay Archives. An
aboriginal flag is painted on the airport to represent the significance of first nations people in the
area but also Stevenson's flying destination.
First Nations People Standing in Front of a Teepee: This is an early photo from the
Hudson Bay Archives. It is meant to give sight to the communities which Stevenson helped.