Frank H. Leslie - Arts and Culture Wall of Fame

Frank H. Leslie picture

Frank Leslie was born in 1876 in Toronto but grew up in Bruce County where he became a schoolteacher
and the county correspondent. Soon he became a newspaper publisher, purchasing the weekly
Tavistock Gazette. Looking for better prospects, he later sold the modest Gazette, and moved to Niagara
Falls to purchase the Review - a weekly newspaper. Under his careful and clever guidance, the paper
saw a dramatic increase in circulation and Leslie quickly became an active promoter of the Niagara Falls
community. In 1917, he became a member of the Canadian Press - Canada’s national news gathering
cooperative. He was known as the Dean of the Canadian newspaper publishers for his longevity and
prominent role in the industry.
For decades, Frank also ran a successful commercial printing company, becoming famous for producing
picturesque postcards of the Niagara area. Frank Leslie was particularly passionate about local history
and wrote numerous articles over his lifetime. Actively promoting Niagara’s history, he often reserved
space in the Review for local history writers. After the First World War, thousands of columns appeared
in the Review on a regular basis. Frank contributed to several historical publications, including Niagara
Falls Canada - a History, the Kiwanis Club of Stamford’s Centennial History of Niagara Falls in 1967, and
was still writing on the subject when he was over ninety years of age.
In his last years, Frank Leslie was Honorary President of both the Lundy’s Lane Historical Society and the
Willoughby Historical Society, and played an active role in the foundation of the Willoughby Historical
Museum in 1968.
Frank H. Leslie died in 1969 at the age of ninety-two, after spending nearly seventy years as a local
writer, publisher, newsman and promoter of Niagara Falls.