Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Kristjan “Chris” Fridfinnson (1898-1938)

Athlete, bookkeeper.

Born at Baldur on 21 June 1898 to Jon Fridfinnsson and Anna Sigridur Jonsdottir Johnson (1867-1940), he moved with the family to Winnipeg in 1905 and attended Wellington School. He was an office boy and clerk with Credit Foncier Franco-Canadien (1914-1915) before becoming a bookkeeping clerk at Dominion Bank (1919-1921) and Drewrys Limited (1924-1925).

He played team hockey with the Young Men’s Lutheran Church club prior to playing for the Winnipeg Monarchs (1918-1919) before joining the Winnipeg Falcons for the 1919-1920 season. In 1920, he played with the team as they won the 1920 Allan Cup and represented Canada at the 1920 Olympic Games in Antwerp, Belgium where they handily won the Olympic championship gold medal. He remained with the club for the 1920-1921 season, joining their junior team roster and was a member of the team that won the Canadian Junior Championship, the first team from Winnipeg to do so. In the late 1920s, he moved to Edmonton, Alberta where he refereed local hockey leagues (1932) before returning to Winnipeg, where he continued occasionally officiating games.

He married Amelia “Molly” Zielkie (1899-1983) and had one daughter, June Fridfinnson (wife of Mr. Patson).

He died at Selkirk on 10 November 1938 and was buried in Brookside Cemetery. He was inducted posthumously into the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame and Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame (1980, 1982).


1916 Canada census, Library and Archives Canada.

Marriage and death registrations, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

“Kingly crew will keep other teams hustling, opine the rail birds,” Manitoba Free Press, 14 December 1918, page 41.

“Achievement of local team was outstanding one,” Winnipeg Free Press, 13 February 1932, page 22.

“Kildonan Stars win from Seals by 5 to 2 score,” Winnipeg Free Press, 15 December 1934, page 26.

“Snap shots on sports,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 March 1935, page 25.

“Former Olympic hockey star dies,” The Winnipeg Tribune, 12 November 1938, page 3.

“Deaths,” Winnipeg Free Press, 15 November 1938, page 21.

“Icelandic pupils backbone of Wellington School,” Winnipeg Free Press, 4 February 1949, page 1.

Logs & Lines From the Winnipeg River: A History of Lac du Bonnet Area by Lac du Bonnet History Book Committee, 1980.

Obituary [Amelia Fridfinnson], Winnipeg Free Press, 11 March 1983, page 22.

Henderson’s Winnipeg Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.

Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame, 1920 Winnipeg Falcons.

Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame, 1920 Winnipeg Falcons Team & 1921 Winnipeg Junior Falcons Team.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer.

Page revised: 15 May 2014

Memorable Manitobans

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