William Turner SABEL (1851-1882)

William was born 02 January 1853 in Islington, Middlesex, England, the son of Ephraim Sabel (1816-1895) and Mary Ann Turner (1830-1910).

In 1881, he married Sophia Margaret Bird (1856-1960) and they had two children: William Henry “Harry” (1882-1938) and Mary (1883-1979, wife of George Richard Flett).

Farmer, Draftsman, Artist

William, along with his friend James D’Arcy, set sail for Canada onboard the Polynesian on 03 March 1875. They settled on the shores of Lake Winnipeg, in the Whytewold area, to farm. They quickly cleared an area and raised a log cabin. He was an amateur artist and captured his experiences in a collection of sketches he sent back home to his family in England (these sketches have been donated to the Archives of Manitoba). He was also known as an interpreter for people immigrating to Manitoba, such as Icelandic settlers.

He later obtained a job as a draftsman with Vaughan, Dennis & Company, a Winnipeg surveying firm, and moved to Winnipeg.

On 01 May 1882, he applied for a homestead grant for SE-32-13-03-E1 (NE corner of Hwy 67 & PTH 220) which was cancelled after his death.

He died of typhoid fever at his Winnipeg home on 19 September 1882 and was buried in St. Andrews on the Red Anglican Church Cemetery.


  • Birth, Marriage and Death Registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
  • London, England, Church of England Births and Baptisms and Marriage and Banns, Ancestry.ca.
  • England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, Ancestry.ca.
  • ca.
  • Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 20 September 1882, page 8.
  • “An Immigrant’s Sketch Book 1855”, Winnipeg Free Press, page 25.
  • “Mrs Sophia Anderson Dies in 105th Year”, The Winnipeg Tribune, 22 December 1960, page 25.
  • Obituary [Mary Flett], 19 November 1979, page 31.


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