The history of Brandon is full of interesting people who have helped to shape the city as we know it today. Use the links below to explore the names from Brandon's past.

People (Glossary)


Lailey, W. Nicholson

W. Nicholson Lailey was born in England in 1877 and arrived in Canada in 1898. He worked as an architect in Brandon from 1904 to 1906. The Reesor Block, Campbell & Campbell Block, and the now-demolished Brandon Hotel were among Lailey’s designs. Lailey also designed many residences in the city, including homes for Robert A. Clement, Frank Calvert, and Robert J. Campbell, to name a few. He moved to British Columbia in 1908.


Lane, Robert

A well-known fuel and ice merchant, Lane is primarily known for his family misfortune. He moved to Brandon in 1890 and married Mary Robinson. While pregnant with her sixth child, Mary was shot to death by Emily Hilda Blake, the family’s domestic servant. Blake was hung at Rideau Park and remains the only woman ever hung in Manitoba. After Mary’s death, Robert married Jessie MacIlvride and from this union another seven children were born. Robert was described as a man of quiet demeanor and a good-hearted fellow with business interests in cartage, road building, coal and ice supply, and river transport on the Assiniboine River.


Laplont, J.

J. Laplont had the block at 924 Rosser Avenue built in 1886. He operated a barbershop and cigar store at that location until he sold the building in 1900.


Lawson, Thomas

Lawson was a pioneer preacher and the first Methodist minister of Brandon. Born near Toronto, he moved to the Brandon district in 1878. His first service was held in the open air on 1st Street in the rain. Lawson performed the first marriage ceremony and the first burial in Brandon. His son was the first child to be born in Brandon. During his pastoral career, Lawson built over 35 churches and was in the ministry for over 52 years, still active at the time of his death in 1929.


Lee, Thomas

Thomas Lee arrived in Brandon in 1881, and worked as a harness maker. By 1884 he was an alderman. He died in 1923.


Lissaman, Reginald Otto

Reginald Otto Lissaman was born in Brandon in 1908. He worked as a contractor alongside his father, Frank C. Lissaman. Later in life, Reginald took over as president of the contracting firm that his father had established in 1889. In 1952, Lissaman was elected to the Manitoba Legislature. He served six consecutive terms until 1969. He was also involved in the development of the International Peace Garden, and was honoured for this role shortly before his death in 1974.