Winnipeg Architecture Foundation

People

Contractors

Suzuki Brothers

Biography

The development and construction firm known as Suzuki Brothers was established by brothers Jun (1921-2001), Kaoru Suzuki (1924 - 2011) and a younger sibling in 1948. The brothers were originally from Strawberry Hill, British Columbia, an area of present-day Surrey that was then a community of Japanese farmers largely focused on strawberry production on former logging lands. Along with their families, during the Second World War the three siblings were relocated by the Canadian government to Manitoba to work on sugar beet farms as a part of the Japanese internment program. At first the family was located in Dominion City, Manitoba, moving to Winnipeg in 1948. An early post-war project that the brothers worked on was the construction of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple (39 Tecumseh Street). Suzuki Brothers Limited was one of several successful Winnipeg Japanese-Canadian construction companies; a specialty for the firm was high quality custom homes, sometimes with extensive carpentry built-in details. Jun Suzuki worked with the firm until his retirement in 1985. Among the firm’s employees was carpenter Mamoru “Jack“ Shimane.