Magnus Eliason

Magnús Eliason

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Taken from the Icelandic Appeal website, circa 2000.
Eliason, Magnus

Adapted from “The Eliasson’s at Laufhóli” in Arnes and District 1876-1990: The Point and Beyond, pp. 96 & 97.

Of the four boys born to Margret and Guðmundur, Agúst (Gusti) (b. 1904), the eldest, took over the farm. He later moved to Gimli and set up a blacksmith and welding shop. When he retired he moved back to Laufhóll where he indulged his favourite hobby of restoring antique farm machinery. Among the more notable pieces of machinery he rebuilt, were the grain binder that his father brought from North Dakota (an 1895 McCormick right handcut, six foot) a 1911 25 horse Case steamer, and the democrat which Gísli Jónsson drove to Gimli to get the Doctor in 1911 when the youngest boy, Magnús, was born. The antique machinery that Gústi left behind is now in the Manitoba Agricultural Museum at Austin, in his name. He was loved and respected in the neighbourhood. He died at Laufhóll in 1980.

Helgi (b. 1906) the second son was a remarkably self-educated man, and gained knowledge of a number of languages. The sciences interested him very much. He was familiar with sawmills and had an insight into how to make a circular saw function. After listening to the noise of a saw, he seemed to know exactly how to set it. Helgi was a quiet methodical man with a gentle disposition. He died in Edmonton in 1974.


Franklin (b. 1907) worked as a painter in British Columbia for many years. Sign painting was his specialty. As a handyman he has no peer. Frank can fix anything! He has a bent for artistic drawing and cartoons. Later he spent eleven years in Columbia, South America and speaks Spanish fluently. He now resides in Winnipeg.

Magnús (b. 1911), the youngest, has been involved in many activities. At one time he studied public speaking with the famous Dale Carnegie of New York. He has been active in politics since the age of twenty-one and helped build the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation in British Columbia. Magnús served fifteen years on Winnipeg City Council. He was in and out of business all his life, his last business venture being Eliason Insurance, and then Eliason and Maloway. His old Company, now Maloway and Eliason, is the only remaining business with an Icelandic name on Sargent Avenue in Winnipeg. Magnus still lives in Winnipeg’s West End.