Christopher Stephen “Steve” QUELCH (1898-1986)

Christopher Stephen “Steve” QUELCH (1898-1986)

Steve was born at Cooks Creek on 12 July 1898, he was the son of Arthur Quelch (1967-1948) and Gertrude Clerk Winter (1864-1958).

On 03 October 1925, he married Kathleen Violet Marshall (1903-1979) in the RM of North Cypress and they had three children: Vivian Faye Edith Quelch (wife of Richard Paul Desautels), Shelagh Quelch (wife of John Stevenson), and Marshal Quelch.

He attended the University of Manitoba for a year, then attended summer school, evening classes and home study to eventually earn his BA and BEd degrees. He was a teacher for 43 years and taught at Birtle School and Whytewold Beach School and then was a teacher at the Transcona Collegiate for several years (1936-1953) before becoming Principal of Westview School (1953-1956) and Transcona Collegiate (1956-1964). He retired in 1964 and then worked for three years as a guidance counsellor at the West Kildonan Collegiate.

Educator, Naturalist

He was active in the Manitoba Teachers’ Society, was President of the Transcona Teachers’ Association, chairman of the Transcona Parks Board, past president of the Suburban Principal’s Association, and a member of the Transcona Stadium Commission and Transcona Hockey Association.

Steve worked as a farmer, on construction, surveying and trapping before teaching. His hobbies were collecting insects, woodworking, gardening, hunting and fishing. In sports he took an active interest in hockey, soccer, baseball, swimming, track and field, boxing and wrestling. His interest in natural history began at an early age.

He was interested in the science of Oology at a young age began collecting bird eggs. He would pierce the shells, blow out the contents and record the name of the bird to which each egg belonged. His collection resides at the Transcona Historical Museum and consists of over 1,000 specimens representing over 100 species. He started collecting butterflies in 1943 and soon extended his collections to include moths. He became known as an expert on local butterflies and moths. The Transcona Historical Museum houses the C.S. Quelch Lepidoptera collection of more than 8,000 butterfly and moth specimens from around the world. In recognition of his community service, he received the Canadian Centennial Medal in 1967.

Steve moved to Toronto, Ontario in 1979 and died there on 11 June 1986. He was buried in the Transcona Cemetery.


  • Birth, Marriage and Death Registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
  • Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 14 June 1986, page 65.
  • “Transcona Notes”, Winnipeg Free Press, 31 Augus6 1936, page 21.
  • “Transcona Notes”, Winnipeg Free Press, 12 September 1953, page 10.
  • “Transcona Notes”, Winnipeg Free Press, 24 March 1956, page 61.
  • “Transcona Head Once a Trapper”, Winnipeg Free Press, 04 Jun 1964, page 1.


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