Memorable Manitobans: Henry George “Harry” Franklin (1892-1987)
Born at Brighton, England on 4 May 1892, son of Mr. and Mrs. George Franklin, he studied in the Art Department of Printing at the University of London then apprenticed with Wightman, Mountain & Andrews, Government Printers, at London. He was swimming champion at the 1910 London Olympics. He came to Canada in 1912 and worked with Stovel, Bulman’s, and the Winnipeg Free Press. He moved to Roland in 1914 to work on the Roland News.
In 1915, he enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force and served in France with the 27th and 184th Battalions, at Somme and Vimy Ridge. He was wounded in April 1917 and was invalided to England, returning to Canada at Christmas 1917. He received his military discharge in May 1918 and worked at the Public Press (Winnipeg) before returning to Roland and purchasing the Roland News. He served as its Editor and Publisher until 1945, when he became employed with the Winnipeg Tribune, remaining there until retirement in 1961. He came out of retirement to be Managing Secretary of the Manitoba Community Newspapers Association until 1972, after which he was its President. He served on the Promotion Council of the Manitoba Centennial Corporation.
On 16 November 1918, he married Elizabeth Victoria “Elva” Stewart (c1897-1985) at Roland and they subsequently had four daughters: Gwendolene Franklin Kerley, Violet Franklin Hull, Elva Franklin Stevens, and Shirley Franklin Perram. He was a member of the IOOF, Masons, Charleswood Golf Club, Manitoba Seniors Golf Association, and a founding member of the Royal Canadian Legion in Manitoba. He was a Justice of the Peace, Secretary of the Roland Board of Trade, and a member of the Roland School Board. He was a recruiting officer during the Second World War and organized four air cadet squadrons in southern Manitoba.
In recognition of his community service, he received the Order of the Crocus (1967), and life membership in the Royal Canadian Legion, Northern Light Masonic Lodge, Canadian Community Newspapers Association, Manitoba Community Newspapers Association, and Winnipeg Press Club.
He died at Winnipeg on 11 December 1987 and was buried in the Chapel Lawn Memorial Gardens.
Attestation papers, Canadian Expeditionary Force, Library and Archives Canada.
Pioneers and Prominent People of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Canadian Publicity Company, 1925.
“Weekly papers get awards,” Winnipeg Free Press, 17 May 1966, page 8.
“Charleswood golfers eager,” Winnipeg Free Press, 23 February 1967, page 50.
“Anniversaries,” Winnipeg Free Press, 12 November 1983, page 27.
“Did You Know,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 November 1984, page 21.
Obituary [Elizabeth Victoria Franklin], Winnipeg Free Press, 22 January 1985, page 38.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 13 December 1987, page 23.
This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer and Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 3 November 2022