Dauphin Canadian Northern Railway Station
103 - 1st Avenue NW,
Designation Date: January 27, 1998
Designation Authority: Honourable Rosemary Vodrey, Minister of Culture, Heritage and Citizenship
Present Owner: The Town of Dauphin
Railway service became essential as Manitoba was opened to settlement and agricultural commerce during the 1880s and 1890s. In one of the province’s greatest waves of construction, first the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) and then other smaller companies, laid down hundreds of kilometres of track and built scores of stations at important points. In 1896, a fledgling railway, the Lake Manitoba Railway and Canal Company, was completed from Gladstone to Dauphin. This stretch of track became the genesis for a major transcontinental service. The company, renamed Canadian Northern in 1899, rivalled the mighty CPR.
As the railway companies extended their lines through the West, each imposed a system that identified certain locations as major and minor distribution centres. The stations were intended through placement and design to make a powerful statement about their place in the local economy and in the community. Stations were often the centre of town, strategically placed at the terminus of a main street.
Dauphin was one of Canadian Northern’s most important divisional points. This station, built in 1912, is one of Manitoba’s finest pieces of railway architecture, with its impressive size, picturesque roofline, dormers, turrets and decorative brick and stone work.