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Monday, 7 June 2010

Winnipeg's First Sex Scandal !

Today, take time to remember Winnipeg's first Police Chief James S. Ingram.

Image source

Ingram was a man who loved drinking, fighting and women and was not afraid to do all three in public view.

He fit in a bit too well with the characters that he was hired to keep in check. On June 7, 1874 Ingram's deputies raided a Sherbrook Street brothel. One of the johns found in a state of undress with a prostitute was, yes, their chief.

That was not the last time that Ingram made the news !

He was part of the rough, tough, adventurous wave of Ontarians attracted by the frontier West. Unlike men such as Sir Sam Steele, though, he came from the opposite end of the morals pool. Nonetheless, he is one of those great colourful figures that make our local history so interesting.

I can't help but think that if we were in America there would have been at least a couple of Hollywood movies made about him. If we were in Britain at least one prime time mini-series. For better or worse we are in a land where colourful figures in local history don't get much, if any, attention at all and that's really a shame.

For more on Ingram read my expanded piece about him here. For more events from today in Manitoba history.

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