Memorable Manitobans: Francis White “Frank” Peters (1860-1933)
Born at St. John, New Brunswick on 25 March 1860, son of barrister William Tyng Peters, he was educated at the St. John Grammar School. He began his life-long railway career at the age of 13, as a telegraph operator with the Intercolonial Railway, then served as an agent at Port Huron and other points in Michigan. For several years in the 1880s, he worked as a freight agent and freight traffic manager with the Chicago and Grand Trunk Railway.
He came to Winnipeg in October 1881 as a billing clerk for the Canadian Pacific Railway, later serving as a cashier, agent at Brandon (1882), and agent at Port Arthur (1889) before returning to Winnipeg in 1896 as a freight agent. He later went to Kootenay, BC as general freight agent, returning to Winnipeg in 1902 as assistant freight traffic manager. From 1907 to 1912, he was Assistant to the Vice-President. He moved to British Columbia in 1912 where he retired in June 1925 as General Superintendent of the BC Division. He remained in an advisory capacity with the railway until his death.
On 2 July 1884, he married Gertrude Wynyard Hurd at Winnipeg. They had no children. He was a member of the Commercial Club (Fort William), Brandon Club, Nelson Club (Vancouver, Board of Governors), Manitoba Club, St. Charles Country Club, Union Club (Victoria), Manitoba Curling Association (President, 1894-1895), Conservative party, and Anglican Church. His recreations included golf and shooting. In 1911, he lived at 72 Nassau Street, Winnipeg.
He died at Vancouver on 13 May 1933.
Marriage registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Who’s Who in Western Canada: A Biographical Dictionary of Notable Living Men and Women of Western Canada, Volume 1, edited by C. W. Parker, Vancouver: Canadian Press Association, 1911.
“F. W. Peters, aged 73, oldest C.P.R. official, is dead,” Winnipeg Free Press, 15 May 1933, page 5.
We thank James Johnstone and Terry Webber for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 13 July 2017