Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Ashton Dennis Cockrill (1887-1931)


Born at Norwich, Norfolk, England on 10 April 1887, son of William John Cockrill and Polly Spratt, he was educated at Lewis Private School and King Edward VI School at Norwich. He came to Canada in 1906 and spent four years trapping and trading for the Hudson’s Bay Company in the Peace River and Rocky Mountain areas. He was later engaged in commercial work in Winnipeg, Saskatchewan, and Alberta.

At the outbreak of the First World War, he enlisted in the Canadian Expetionary Force in August 1914, at Regina with the 16th Light Horse, B Squadron, at Moosomin. He went overseas with the First Canadian Division in February 1915, attached to the 5th Canadian Battalion (Machine Guns). He saw service at Ypres, Festubert, Givenchy, and Langumarckm, and was commissioned as a Lieutenant. Wounded at Messines and Hill 60, he was invalided to England. He later did instructional and propaganda work in the United States.

After his military discharge, he joined the B. H. Hill Company, seller of turpentine and oils, serving as its Secretary-Treasurer. He was a member of the Kiwanis Club, Knights of Pythias, United Service Club, Junior Board of Trade (President, 1925), and Anglican Church.

He was found dead, at the wheel of his car in a garage at 106 Furby Street, on 30 March 1931 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery.


Attestation papers, Canadian Expeditionary Force, Library and Archives Canada.

Pioneers and Prominent People of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Canadian Publicity Company, 1925.

Death registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Dies in auto,” Winnipeg Tribune, 30 March 1931, page 1.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 29 June 2021

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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