Memorable Manitobans: Frederick Laurence Schaffner (1855-1935)
Physician, MP (1904-1908), MP (1908-1911), MP (1911-1917), Senator.
Born at Williamstown, Nova Scotia on 18 August 1855, son of William Caleb Schaffner and Azubah Phiney, he attended Acadia College (BA) before coming to Manitoba and teaching at Rapid City School (1882-1884) and Acton School (1885-1886). He later received a medical degree at Trinity College and studied medicine at New York and Chicago. He practiced medicine at Boissevain and served as a medical officer during the First World War.
On 19 April 1887, he married fellow teacher Christina A. Allan (1863-1937) at Montreal. They had two children, both of whom died in childhood. A candidate for the Turtle Mountain constituency in the 1888 and 1892 provincial general elections, he later served as a councillor and Mayor of Boissevain (1903-1904). Elected to the House of Commons for Souris in 1904, he was re-elected in 1908 and 1911, defeating Archibald McIntyre Campbell each time. He was not a candidate in the 1917 election, as he was called to the Senate in October 1917.
He died at his Winnipeg home, 70 Balmoral Place, on 22 May 1935 and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery. He was commemorated by the railway siding of Schaffner.
“Education,” Manitoba Free Press, 17 March 1884, page 4.
The Canadian Directory of Parliament, 1867-1967, edited by J. K. Johnson, Public Archives of Canada, Ottawa [Library and Archives Canada], 1968.
Biographical sketch of F. L. Schaffner, PARLINFO.
A History of Manitoba: Its Resources and People by Prof. George Bryce, Toronto: The Canadian History Company, 1906.
The Story of Manitoba by F. H. Schofield, Winnipeg: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1913.
“Hon. F. Schaffner member of Senate dies Wednesday,” Winnipeg Free Press, 23 May 1935, page 1.
“Hon. F. L. Schaffner to be buried Friday,” Winnipeg Free Press, 24 May 1935, page 8.
Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.
We thank Pat Allan for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 8 July 2022