Clearsprings Cemetery: Close to Home!

I grew up knowing all about Clearsprings! Wait. No I didn’t. But I thought I did. That’s because Steinbach’s mall is called Clearspring Centre. As a child, I loved Clearspring Centre, mostly because of its infamous red carpeted “pit” which features fondly in the memory of every child of the Eighties in southeast Manitoba.

I always assumed I knew where the mall’s name came from: a clear spring, obviously.

That may be true, but who gave this spot its English name in the first place? Settlers from Great Britain! They began moving into this area in 1870, beating the Mennonites to it by about four years. This is pretty interesting, because later the government included this area in the East Reserve, meaning, reserved for the Mennonites. Though when the Mennonites did arrive, they seemed perfectly fine with their English-speaking neighbours, and in fact you can see on some maps that the East Reserve kind of has a bite taken out of it at the Clearsprings area just north of Steinbach.

Of course by now it’s all kind of intermeshed in my mind and I’d been under the impression that the mall was where the settlement had been. This is not true! I learned this from reading the Historical Atlas of the East Reserve. It seems ridiculous to have to learn about something from a book when I live literally two miles from it. But what can I say, I haven’t (yet) navigated every single gravel road surrounding Steinbach.

A lovely gate, and such a well-cared-for place, too. I signed the guest book.

While we were here, some other people entered the cemetery. With a truck. And mowers. The folks who care for the cemetery! To me, they’re kind of rare and magical, because they’re rumoured to exist, yet I never see them. Until this very day, at Clearsprings Cemetery.

Join me for a little walk through the cemetery!

The above cairn says this: 

Clearsprings Cemetery
Established 1884
Dedicated to all those pioneers who with hardship and toil began in 1870 to settle in the Clearsprings and Giroux districts. The log Presbyterian Church built in 1879 just to the north of this cemetery was their source of strength and guidance. May their memory inspire future generations.

The above cairn says this:


Presbyterian 1893-1925 / United 1925-1967

This monument, erected in the year 2001, by present generations, is dedicated to the pioneers who settled around the clear running springs and rich loamy soil of this area, named “Clear Springs”. After a few years, the surnames listed below, with their hard work, courage, vision, and continued need for worship, erected their second church building, to the south of this cemetery, in 1893.


Mack – 1869   Slater – 1869   Jamieson – 1870   Rankin – 1870   Keating – 1872   Laing – 1872   Peterson – 1872   Acres – 1873   Langill – 1873   Winfield – 1873   Carleton – 1873   Adams – 1874   Cohoe – 1874   Dykes – 1874   Glover – 1874   Gorrie – 1874   Steel – 1874   Borland – 1875   McIntyre – 1875   Tomlinson – 1875   Wright – 1875   Matthews – 1875   West – 1875   Lund – 1876   Reiach – 1877   Binnie – 1878   Burns – 1878   McCaskill – 1878   Mooney – 1878   Norris – 1878   Stanger – 1878   Anderson – 1879   Simpson – 1879   Crawford – 1880   Atkinson – 1881   Bruce – 1882   Penwarden – 1883   Hasted – 1884   Hovey – 1884
Thomson – 1884

“Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you: and consider the results of their conduct, imitate their faith.” Hebrews 13:7

The “Veterans Remembered” cairn.
Everyone drives down Borland Road… but perhaps few know it was named for this person.

Thank you for joining me for this sunset stroll through a lovely, and very nearby, cemetery!