Hugh Jeffery Gray Allan was born on May 14, 1917 in Cypress River, Manitoba. The Allan family moved frequently when Allan was a child, but he spent most of his adult life in Winnipeg. Allan was a well-respected photographer whose work has been displayed in many publications including: The Winnipeg Tribune, Time magazine, Swedish Press International, Maclean's magazine, and Sports Illustrated. Allan attended Gordon Bell High School and designed the school's crest. In 1947 while Allan was working at the Swift's Plant in St. Boniface, Harold Plant and Art Smales, Swift's news correspondents, knew of Allan's work as an amateur photographer and thought he would be the ideal for taking pictures for the Swift's newspaper. Allan used this as an opportunity to improve his technique and to produce better quality photographs. Over the next few years, Allan began to establish himself as a high quality photographer within the Winnipeg region. Allan was one of the first photographers to perfect the panoramic shot and to use bouncing light to conquer harsh shadows. Allan's big break happened during, the 1950 Manitoba flood disaster where the Winnipeg Tribune hired him to help their photo staff cover the flood. By October 1950, the Winnipeg Tribune hired him as a full time staff photographer. Allan became a well-respected photographer within the Tribune for over twenty years but decided to leave and form his own free lance business in 1970. During Allan's long career, he had the opportunity to cover many exciting events, sports and people such as: the Winnipeg Centennial celebrations, royal visits, the last steam locomotive passenger train, John F. Kennedy in Grand Forks, ND, the 1967 Pan Am games, the Bobby Hull signing at Portage and Main, the Winnipeg Jets, the Blue Bombers, the 1972 Canada-Russia Summit Series, and visits to Winnipeg by Gypsy Rose Lee, Harry Belafonte, Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Gordie Howe and many more.</p>
Allan's love of sports was evident by his participation and his photographic coverage of sports. Allan especially enjoyed golf and curling. Allan was a founding member of the Grey Owl Tournament and was five times skip champion at the newsmen bonspiel tournament. Allan was also one of eight media journalists to begin the Manitoba Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association, (M.S.S.A.) and in 1956, they inaugurated the annual dinner and awards ceremony for Manitoba Athlete of the Year. Allan covered many sport including golf, curling, the Blue Bombers, the Winnipeg Jets, and M.S.S.A atheles of the year.
Allan accumulated awards and honours based on hi swork and contributions to photojournalism which include: the Floyd Davis Memorial Award for substantially contributing to the preservation of the bonspiel (1973), he was inducted to the Media Roll of Honour from the M.S.S.A. (1989), and he was inducted to the Winnipeg Blue Bomber Media Roll of Honour (2002). Hugh Allan passed away on May 30th, 2004.