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Memorable Manitobans: Théophile Lavoie (1836-1908)

Educator, cleric.

Born in Kamouraska, Lower Canada, he studied law at Université Laval in 1857-58, before entering the Oblate Order. He was ordained in France in 1864, and he returned to Canada as director of studies at the Collège d’Ottawa, where he found bilingualism awkward. He attempted to oppose the English group at the college and found himself transferred to Manitoba in 1870, where he became director of the Collège de Saint-Boniface. His term saw the college incorporate and become part of the foundation of the University of Manitoba. But the Oblate presence could not be sustained at the college, and Lavoie became a parish priest in Winnipeg before being sent to various parishes in the United States. He ended up at the Collège d’Ottawa, where he now supported bilingualism. He died in Montreal.

More information:

Théophile Lavoie, Dictionary of Canadian Biography XIII, 585-86.


Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

Page revised: 21 March 2008

Memorable Manitobans

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