Mayor Milton Francis sitting wearing a military uniform and has a moustacheMilton Francis moved to Fort William from Huron County, Ontario some time before 1907 and worked as Manager of the Nordheimer Piano Company. Later, he formed the Francis-Smith Agency, which operated two stores in Fort William and Port Arthur selling pianos and Victrolas.

In August 1914, Francis enlisted with the Canadian Expeditionary Force. When he left Canada to serve overseas in 1915, he was made Captain. During the war, Francis participated in the major battles fought at Ypres, the Somme, Vimy Ridge, and Passchendale. In August 1917, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his valour at Vimy Ridge, and by 1918 he was an instructor in Aldershot, England, at the Senior Officers Staff School.

Upon returning, Francis relocated his music store to Port Arthur, and also became Vice-President of a coal merchants' company. In 1925 he opened a lumber yard which incorporated with John Stirrett’s company, and became the Milton Francis Lumber Company.

Francis was elected Mayor in 1926, at a time when the post-war cynicism and economic restraints were lifting. His platform included increasing tourism, establishing pulp and paper industries and subsidiaries, and looking into the loss of the Canadian National Railway terminals.

Born: March 26, 1884 in Middlesex County, Ontario

Died: June 4, 1950 in Port Arthur, Ontario at the age of 66

Mayor: 1926-1927


Previous Mayor: Mayor James White Crooks

Next Mayor: Mayor John Oswald Hourigan


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