Manitoba Heritage Council Commemorative Plaques

Beginning of the Jewish Community In Manitoba

Beginning of the Jewish Community In Manitoba
(Courtesy of the Jewish Historical Society of Western Canada Collection,
Provincial Archives of Manitoba)
Installed 1998
Asper Jewish Community Campus
123 Doncaster Street, Winnipeg

In the spring of 1882 some 350 Russian Jews fleeing Czarist persecution arrived in Winnipeg. They had been assisted in their journey by the Mansion House Committee in London. Difficulties in negotiating for land to accommodate the colony prevented the immigrants from continuing further west. Awaiting resolution of the problems, the new arrivals had to remain in Winnipeg, where a handful of Jews recently arrived from England and Germany struggled to assist them.

The refugees spent a harsh winter in the spartan conditions of immigration sheds which were then situated near the junction of the Red and Assiniboine rivers. Although the Jews encountered some hostility from the public, there was sympathy and support from church and civic leaders.

It is from these difficult beginnings that subsequent generations of Jewish Manitobans established their community in Winnipeg.