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We Made Baldur


Restauranteur Lee Foon



In “The Way of the Bachelor” * her study of “Early Chinese Settlement in Manitoba”, historian Alison Marshall includes the story of Lee Foon and his family.

Mr. Lee arrived by boat from China in 1893.Several years were spent working in B.C. He returned to China to marry See Yee about 1914.  In 1916 he left his wife and new son, Kenneth Kwong while he set out establishing himself in Canada. This time he wended his way across the prairies and settled in Baldur, Man. From Charlie King, he purchased an ice-cream parlour and grocery in a small building on one of the side streets. He built a new building in 1924 which housed a store,  café and ice-cream shop.

He was also able to have his brother bring his wife and son over in 1919. His store remained in the Lee family until it closed in 2010. After many years of hard work and raising nine children, Mr. and Mrs. Lee retired to Vancouver in 1959 leaving the business in charge of their son Tom.

Several of their children achieved noteworthy success, including
Lillian, the first of their children born in Baldur, who graduated from the Grace Hospital School of Nursing after being the first Chinese student to be admitted. Elin embarked on a teaching career and became Manitoba's first Chinese school teacher.
Oscar, who served with the Canadian Army in WWII. returned to Baldur in 1961, where he and his wife, Jean from Kuala Lumpur, took over the original family business.

Adapted from Come into our Heritage, page 527.

See also:

**   The Way of the Bachelor: Early Chinese Settlement in Manitoba
By Alison R. Marshall, 108

Our Heritage  People / Index