John Graves Simcoe

About John Graves Simcoe

Who is it?: First Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada
Birth Day: February 25, 1752
Birth Place: Cotterstock, United Kingdom, British
Monarch: George III
Governor General: Gen. Sir Guy Carleton, 1st Baron Dorchester
Premier: William Pitt the Younger
Preceded by: None
Succeeded by: Peter Russell
Spouse(s): Elizabeth Posthuma Gwillim (m. 1782)
Relations: Henry Walcot Simcoe (1823–1848) – son of Henry Addington, grandson of J.G. Simcoe Charlotte Simcoe (?– 1842) Katherine (1801–1861) Anne Simcoe (1804–?) Anne Eliza Marke Simcoe (1824–1869) – daughter of Henry Addington Paul Creed Guillim Simcoe (1835–1875) – son of Henry Addington Philip Francis Simcoe (1834–1885) son of Henry Addington John Kennaway Simcoe (1825–1891)
Children: John Cornwall Simcoe (1798–1799) Francis Gwillim Simcoe (1791–1812) Eliza Simcoe Henry Addington Simcoe (1800–1868) Charlotte Henrietta Maria (?–1845) Caroline (?–1858) Katherine Simcoe (1793–1794) Sophia Jemima Simcoe (1789–1864)
Parents: Captain John Simcoe Katherine Simcoe
Education: Eton College, Merton College, Oxford
Occupation: Military officer, Colonial administrator
Allegiance: Kingdom of Great Britain
Service/branch: British Army
Years of service: 1770–1806
Rank: Lieutenant-General
Unit: 35th Regiment of Foot 40th Regiment of Foot
Commands: Queen's Rangers 22nd Regiment of Foot Commander-in-Chief, India
Battles/wars: American War of Independence Siege of Boston New York and New Jersey campaign Philadelphia campaign Battle of Monmouth Battle of Crooked Billet Battle of Quinton's Bridge Battle of Brandywine Yorktown campaign Battle of Spencer's Ordinary Siege of Yorktown Haitian Revolution

John Graves Simcoe

John Graves Simcoe was born on February 25, 1752 in Cotterstock, United Kingdom, British, is First Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada. John Graves Simcoe was a General of the British Army who later served as the first Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada, which later became Ontario. He helped in the establishment of institutions such as courts of law, freehold land tenure, trial by jury, and English common law. He also contributed to the abolition of slavery in Canada. Born in Cotterstock, Oundle, England, he joined the British Army at the age of 18. He took part in the American Revolutionary War during the Siege of Boston as a young man. Shortly after that, he was promoted to the rank of Captain. A year later, he is believed to have commanded a massacre of Americans in their sleep. He entered politics as a Member of Parliament from St Mawes, Cornwall. After the Constitutional Act was passed in 1791, giving a representative government to Canada, Simcoe was appointed Upper Canada’s first lieutenant governor. In this post, he promoted immigration, agriculture, as well as road building. Later, he was also made Commander-in-Chief in India. However, he passed away before he could take up this post.
John Graves Simcoe is a member of Military Leaders

Does John Graves Simcoe Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, John Graves Simcoe has been died on 26 October 1806(1806-10-26) (aged 54)\nExeter, England.

🎂 John Graves Simcoe - Age, Bio, Faces and Birthday

When John Graves Simcoe die, John Graves Simcoe was 54 years old.

Popular As John Graves Simcoe
Occupation Military Leaders
Age 54 years old
Zodiac Sign Pisces
Born February 25, 1752 (Cotterstock, United Kingdom, British)
Birthday February 25
Town/City Cotterstock, United Kingdom, British
Nationality British

🌙 Zodiac

John Graves Simcoe’s zodiac sign is Pisces. According to astrologers, Pisces are very friendly, so they often find themselves in a company of very different people. Pisces are selfless, they are always willing to help others, without hoping to get anything back. Pisces is a Water sign and as such this zodiac sign is characterized by empathy and expressed emotional capacity.

🌙 Chinese Zodiac Signs

John Graves Simcoe was born in the Year of the Monkey. Those born under the Chinese Zodiac sign of the Monkey thrive on having fun. They’re energetic, upbeat, and good at listening but lack self-control. They like being active and stimulated and enjoy pleasing self before pleasing others. They’re heart-breakers, not good at long-term relationships, morals are weak. Compatible with Rat or Dragon.

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Famous Quotes:

The principles of the British Constitution do not admit of that slavery which Christianity condemns. The moment I assume the Government of Upper Canada under no modification will I assent to a law that discriminates by dishonest policy between natives of Africa, America, or Europe.

— John Graves Simcoe, Address to the Legislative Assembly



John Graves Simcoe (25 February 1752 – 26 October 1806) was a British Army general and the first Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada from 1791 until 1796 in southern Ontario and the watersheds of Georgian Bay and Lake Superior. He founded York (now Toronto) and was instrumental in introducing institutions such as courts of law, trial by jury, English Common law, and freehold land tenure, and also in the abolition of slavery in Canada.


Simcoe was the only surviving son of John (1710–1759) and Katherine Simcoe (d. 1767). His parents had four children, but he was the only one to live past childhood; Percy drowned in 1764, while Paulet william and John william died as infants. His father was a captain in the Royal Navy who commanded the 60-gun HMS Pembroke during the Siege of Louisbourg (1758), with James Cook as his sailing master. He died of pneumonia on 15 May 1759 on board his ship in the mouth of the Saint Lawrence River, a few months prior to the siege of Quebec. The family then moved to his mother's parental home in Exeter. His paternal grandparents were william and Mary (née Hutchinson) Simcoe.


He was educated at Exeter Grammar School and Eton College. He spent a year at Merton College, Oxford; he was then admitted to Lincoln's Inn, but decided to follow the military career for which his father had intended him. He was initiated into Freemasonry in Union Lodge, Exeter on 2 November 1773.


Simcoe wrote a book on his experiences with the Queen's Rangers, titled A Journal of the Operations of the Queen's Rangers from the end of the year 1777 to the conclusion of the late American War, which was published in 1787.


On August 31, 1778, Lieut. Col. Simcoe led a massacre of forty Native Americans, allied with the Continental Army, in what is today the Bronx, NY. This place is known as Indian Field in Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx. NY.


During October 1779, Simcoe and 80 men launched an attack on central New Jersey from southern Staten Island known as Simcoe's Raid, from what is known today as the Conference House, resulting in the burning of Patriot supplies inside a Dutch Reformed Church in Finderne, including hay and grain; the release of Loyalist prisoners from the Somerset County Courthouse; and Simcoe's capture by Armand Tuffin de La Rouërie. Simcoe was released at the end of 1779 and rejoined his unit in Virginia. He was involved in a skirmish near Williamsburg and was at the Siege of Yorktown. He was invalided back to England in December of that year as a Lieutenant-Colonel, having been promoted in March 1782.


Simcoe convalesced at the Devon home of his godfather, Admiral Samuel Graves. In 1782, Simcoe married Elizabeth Posthuma Gwillim, his godfather's ward. Elizabeth was a wealthy heiress, who acquired a 5,000 acre estate at Honiton in Devon and built Wolford Lodge. Wolford was the Simcoe family seat until 1923.


Simcoe's first priority was the North West Indian War between the United States and the "Western Confederacy" of Native Americans west of the Appalachian Mountains and south of the Great Lakes (the Shawnee, Miami, Wyandot, and other tribes). This conflict had begun in 1785, and was still raging when Simcoe arrived in 1792. Simcoe had hoped to form an Indian buffer state between the two countries, even though he distrusted Joseph Brant, the main Indian leader. Simcoe rejected the section of the Treaty of Paris (1783) which awarded that area to the US, on the grounds that American actions had nullified the treaty. However, the French Revolutionary Wars broke out in 1793. The government in London decided to seek good terms with the United States. Simcoe was instructed to avoid giving the US reason to mistrust Britain but, at the same time, to keep the Native Americans on both sides of the border friendly to Britain. The Indians asked for British military support, which was initially refused, but in 1794 Britain supplied the Indians with rifles and ammunition.


Simcoe entered politics in 1790. He was elected Member of Parliament for St Mawes in Cornwall, as a supporter of the government (led by William Pitt the Younger). As MP, he proposed raising a militia force like the Queen's Rangers. He also proposed to lead an invasion of Spain. But instead he was to be made lieutenant governor of the new loyalist province of Upper Canada. He resigned from Parliament in 1792 on taking up his new post.


Simcoe was appointed Lieutenant-Governor on 12 September 1791, and left for Canada with his wife Elizabeth and daughter Sophia, leaving three daughters behind in England with their aunt. They left England in September and arrived in Canada on 11 November. Due to severe weather, the Simcoes spent the winter in Quebec City. Simcoe finally reached Kingston, Upper Canada on 24 June 1792.


Under the Constitutional Act, the provincial government consisted of the Lieutenant-Governor, an appointed Executive Council and Legislative Council, and an elected Legislative Assembly. The first meeting of the nine-member Legislative Council and sixteen-member Legislative Assembly took place at Newark (now Niagara-on-the-Lake) on 17 September 1792.


Simcoe began construction of two roads through Upper Canada, for defence and to encourage settlement and trade. Yonge Street (named after British Minister of War Sir George Yonge) ran north-south from York to Lake Simcoe. Soldiers of the Queen's Rangers began cutting the road in August 1793, reaching Holland Landing in 1796. Dundas Street (named for Colonial Secretary Henry Dundas) ran east-west, between York and London.


In 1794 Simcoe had been appointed Major-General. In July 1796 poor health forced him to return to Britain. He was unable to return to Upper Canada and resigned his office in 1798.


He served briefly as the commander of British forces in Saint-Domingue (later Haiti). There, in the spring of 1797, he defended the coastal town of Saint-Marc but lost Mirebalais and the Central Plateau to the forces of Toussaint Louverture, leader of the slave revolt and by that point commander-in-chief of the French Republican forces on the island. This campaign signalled the end of the English attempt, in collaboration with planters, to restore slavery and other aspects of the ancien regime to take over the rich, sugar-producing island while France was involved in internal affairs of its Revolution.


Simcoe was appointed colonel of the 81st Foot in 1798, but exchanged the position for the 22nd Foot less than six months later. He was also promoted to Lieutenant-General and was made commander of the Western District. In 1806, he was appointed Commander-in-Chief, India (to succeed Cornwallis, who had died shortly after arriving in India.) Simcoe died in Exeter before assuming the post. Gerard Lake, 1st Viscount Lake, was reappointed to replace Simcoe.


Slavery was thus ended in Upper Canada long before it was abolished in the British Empire as a whole. By 1810, there were no slaves in Upper Canada, but the Crown did not abolish slavery throughout the Empire until 1834.


Captain John Kennaway Simcoe, the last member of the Simcoe family, died without issue in 1891 and was survived by widow beyond 1911.


Simcoe was buried in Wolford Chapel on the Simcoe family estate near Honiton, Devon. The Ontario Heritage Foundation acquired title to the chapel in 1982.


Simcoe realised that Newark made an unsuitable capital because it was on the Canada–US border and subject to attack. He proposed moving the capital to a more defensible position, in the middle of Upper Canada's southwestern peninsula between Lake Erie and Lake Huron. He named the new location London, and renamed the river there the Thames in anticipation of the change. Dorchester rejected this proposal, but accepted Simcoe's second choice, the present site of Toronto. Simcoe moved the capital there in 1793, and renamed the settlement York after Frederick, Duke of York, King George III's second son. The town was severely underdeveloped at the time of its founding so he brought with him politicians, builders, Nova Scotia timber men, and Englishmen skilled in whipsawing and cutting joists and rafters.

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