Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: John Folliott Crofton (1801-1885)

Soldier, Governor of Assiniboia (Red River Settlement) (1846-1847).

Born in Dublin, Ireland in 1801, the son of Reverend Henry Crofton, he was educated at Trinity College there. He served in the British army in Cape of Good Hope, India, and Aden before being sent as a lieutenant-colonel to command a detachment of troops in Red River in 1845. He and the troops arrived after the Oregon emergency for which they had been sent was settled, and he despised the local society as full of “vulgar and ill-bred folk.” He was acting-Governor of Assiniboia from June to August, 1847. He left in 1847, subsequently defending the Hudson's Bay Company against a petition of grievance presented by Alexander Kennedy Isbister and then before the parliamentary inquiry of 1857. He was promoted to the rank of general in 1877 and died in London on 17 July 1885.

His diary 1846-47 are on microfilm at the Archives of Manitoba and in typescript at the Winnipeg Public Library.

He is commemorated by Crofton Bay in Winnipeg.

More information:

John Folliott Crofton, Dictionary of Canadian Biography XI, 219-20.


Pioneers and Early Citizens of Manitoba, Winnipeg: Manitoba Library Association, 1971.

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

Page revised: 2 August 2008

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society. We acknowledge that the collection contains both reputable and disreputable people. All are worth remembering as a lesson to future generations.

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