Manitoba Historical Society
     Keeping history alive for over 139 years


Pay & Donate in the MHS Online Shop


No. 86

MHS Summer
Field Trip

This Old



Historic Sites
of Manitoba

Memorable Manitobans: John Henry Lefroy (1817-1890)


Born in Hampshire, England, and educated at the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich, he took up the superintendency of the Toronto observatory in 1842. A few months later, in May 1843, he left on an expedition to locate the magnetic north pole. The journey of 5,000 miles took him across the Northwest before he returned to Toronto late in 1844. He came back to Manitoba several times in later life. He received the CB in 1871 and a KCMG in 1877. He died in Cornwall, England. His autobiography was published in 1895.

More information:

Diary of a Magnetic Survey of a Portion of the Dominion of Canada, Chiefly in the North-Western Territories: Executed in the Years 1842-1844 by J. H. Lefroy (1883).

In Search of the Magnetic North: A Soldier-Surveyor’s Letters from the North-West, 1843-44 edited by G. F. G. Stanley (1955).

John Henry Lefroy, Dictionary of Canadian Biography XI, 508-10.


Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by J. M. Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

Page revised: 24 March 2008

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society.

Search the collection by word or phrase, name, place, occupation or other text:

Custom Search

Browse surnames beginning with:
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z | 2017

Send corrections and additions to the Memorable Manitobans Administrator at

Criteria for Memorable Manitobans | Suggest a Memorable Manitoban  | Our Inspiration | Acknowledgements

Support the MHS and

Back to top of page


To report an error on the above page, please contact the MHS Webmaster.

Home  |  Terms & Conditions  |  FAQ  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy  |  Donations Policy

© 1998-2018 Manitoba Historical Society. All rights reserved.