Manitoba's Legislative Building

A point of interest on the Winnipeg's Wealthy Beginnings GPS-guided audio walking tour.

Press play & listen to the tour audio!

Audio Transcript​

Soo we've been walking around it for awhile, we should probably talk about Manitoba's Legislative Building, all 250,000 sq. feet. of beauty and intrigue!

It was built in 1911 during an exciting time in architecture - a period of Gothic and Greek revival.

It’s made of Tyndall limestone from a quarry north of Winnipeg. Interestingly, this means walls hold some of Manitoba's earliest history. They're filled with fossils from the prehistoric tropical body of water that once covered our province - Lake Agassiz.

But, back to what we were saying ... 1911 was an exciting time in architecture. A contest to design the Ledge was extended to architects of the British Empire, with a hefty award for the winner. $10,000. That’s almost $275,000 today!

What they were looking for was to be, in the words of John Ruskin, “not for present delight nor use alone … but one that our descendants will thank us for”.

Liverpool’s Frank Worthington Simon, a Freemason, won. And although the intention was to WOW future generations, what he created in Manitoba’s Legislative Building has done so much more than that!

Many believe it has ties to secret society. Described as “an architectural Sudoku Puzzle”, harboring cryptic symbols, it’s whispered to be Manitoba’s own version of the DaVinci Code. The Ledge has been called “a Masonic temple masquerading as a government building” and “The Rosetta Stone of architecture”.

If what they say is true, there are sections that even hold magical powers. With that in mind, Manitobans might want to be careful when we vote!

Image by Mahesh Gupta

Winnipeg's Wealthy Beginnings

This POI is featured on the Winnipeg's Wealthy Beginnings Audio Walking Tour, part of the Tripvia Tours mobile app available for Android & Apple.

All audio walking tours are self-guided and include fully narrated commentary.

Trivia Challenge

Each POI has a fun multiple choice trivia challenge you can test your skills on.

The trivia questions are separate from the commentary and completely optional.

The app keeps score for you so you can challenge your friends and family.

How it Works

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automatically plays

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fun trivia questions

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