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Page Index of A History of Portage la Praire
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The village of Macdonald was built on land donated by Mr.
James Cowan; the location being the northwest quarter of Sec. 35, Tsp. 12, Rge. 8. and from the time it was seen through the eyes of the reporters in 1893 to 1900 it had grown considerably. Added to the list of business establishments that they mentioned were: a boarding house (operated by Mr. and Mrs. A. Curtis), a barber shop, a butcher shop, a creamery and two churches - the Presbyterian and the Methodist.
Gent1emen credited with having the churches built were: John Ferris, Henry Clark, J ames Askin and Elias Brown.
The Methodist church is again in operation after having been used as a classroom for a year or so.
In 1936 the Presbyterian Church was bought by the school board and by 1954, with two rooms added to the building through the years, MacDonald had a fair-sized high school.
The school system had its start in the village in 1885 when a little log school-house was built and registered as Drumconner S.D. No. 476. The first trustees were Elias Brown, Henry Clark and Thos. Connor. The first teacher was Miss Mary Morrison.
This school served the educational needs of the community until 1905 when a larger one became a necessity. The new building which was erected that year was named the "Connor" school.
Consolidation came about in 1962. The school districts of Dun donald, Longburn and West Oakland united with Connor and the new school was registered as "Macdonald Cons. School No. 2401.»
In 1964 Belle Plain and in 1966 Elsmith came in as closed school districts. Since 1964 high school students have attended the Portage Collegiate and the three room school in Macdonald (with 70 to 80 pupils) operates with three teachers.
Back in 1910, Macdonald had a C.P.R. station with a resident agen t and mail service twice daily. This con tin ued un til 1954 when the trains were taken off. The mail has been delivered by truck since that time. (Mrs. M. Burton and Mrs. D. Gillespie took the last mail off the train).
Macdonald got telephone service in 1907. The local exchange was situated in Curtis' store.
By this time more businesses had been added: a livery stable, Curtis' general store, R. E. Barber's store and two elevators (Lake