McPhail, Effie and Alex

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McPhail, Effie and Alex

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  • Effie McPhail
  • Alex McPhail

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Dates of existence

1900-1999; 1887-1989


Effie Weir (1900-1999), later Effie McPhail, was born in British Colombia to parents Alex Weir and Blanche Rae. The family moved near Brandon, Manitoba in 1903 to farm. After growing up in Brandon, Effie finished Normal School at the age of 16 and became a teacher. She taught in rural Manitoba for five years until marrying Alex McPhail (1897-1989) in 1923. Alex was born and raised on a farm in Forrest, Manitoba, near Brandon. He was the eldest son of Archie and Mary McPhail who came to Manitoba from Ontario. Before his marriage, in addition to farming, Alex was a lieutenant in the Royal Canadian Air Force during the First World War. Alex and Effie had four children: Donna, Ronald, Malcolm, and Archie. They farmed in Forrest, Manitoba until moving to Brandon in 1950. Effie and Alex were both active members of their community. Alex was especially involved in the agricultural community and won many prizes over the years for his livestock. Between 1954 and 1965, he served as manager for the Provincial Exhibition of Manitoba and the Manitoba Winter Fair. He also served one term as the president of the Canadian Association of Exhibitions. Additionally, Alex was on the Brandon General Hospital board, the Brandon College board, and was a member of the Kiwanis and Shriners clubs. He was also involved in local sports. Both Alex and Effie McPhail were active members of the United Church. Effie was also involved in multiple community organizations. She was a member of the Brandon Council of Women and served as president of the council for three years (1955-1957). In 1960, she served a term as president of the Brandon Liberal Women’s Association. Effie was also an advocate for the preservation of local history. She was part of the Assiniboine Historical Society and the initiative to open the Daly House Museum.


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