George Simpson

Overview

Born in Scotland and trained as a sugar broker in London, England, Sir George Simpson (1792-1860) was unexpectedly appointed in 1820 as governor of Rupert’s Land and the Indian territories, an area encompassing all of Canada from Hudson Bay to the Pacific Ocean. By his friendliness of manner, strict discipline, and vigorous and constant travel, he brought peace and prosperity to the vast empire under his control.

Simpson’s explorations opened Canada from Labrador to British Columbia and from Yukon to Nunavut. He was knighted in 1841, then travelled around the world, predicting the fall of California to the United States, saving the Hawaiians from colonial occupation, and describing the mysteries of remotest Siberia. Praised as the governor who "combined the widest range of authority and the longest tenure of power ever enjoyed by one man in North America," he stands with Sir John A. Macdonald as one of the greatest Makers of Canada.

Reviews

"Lahey's passion for his subject is obvious, and his decision to draw upon Simpson's own writings and those of his contemporaries to give voice and historical credibility to the biography is admirable. He makes a compelling argument for the study of Simpson as one of the Makers of Canada."

CM Magazine

"Lahey uses Simpsons extensive letters and journals to recreate his life, and discover more about Simpsons character."

Resource Links (June, 2011)

About the Author

D.T. Lahey

Posted by Kendra on December 6, 2014

D.T. Lahey

D.T. Lahey is a retired Ontario teacher and department head of English. Lahey's interest in genealogy led to research of Sir George Simpson's origins, his wives, and his children. He has published articles breaking new ground in Simpson research in Families: The Journal of the Ontario Genealogical Society, and lives in Guelph, Ontario.