Quebec History Marianopolis College

Date Published:
July 2007

L’Encyclopédie de l’histoire du Québec / The Quebec History Encyclopedia


George Taylor Denison


Denison, George Taylor (1839-1925), soldier and author, was born in Toronto on August 31, 1839, the eldest son of Col. George Taylor Denison and Mary Anne Dawson. He was educated at Upper Canada College and at the University of Toronto (LL.B., 1861), and was called to the bar of Upper Canada in 1861. He joined "Denison's Horse" in 1855 as a cornet, and in 1866 he became lieutenant-colonel commanding the Governor-General's Body Guard, as the unit was henceforth to be known. He saw active service in 1866 during the Fenian raids, and in 1885 during the North West Rebellion. In 1868 he was one of the group of young men who founded the "Canada First" movement; and twenty-five years later he was the chief figure in Canada in the Imperial Federation movement. From 1877 to 1923 he 'was senior police magistrate of Toronto, and he died at Toronto on June 6, 1925. He was twice married, (1) to Caroline Macklem (d: 1885), by whom he had three sons and three daughters, and (2) to Helen Amanda Mair, by whom he had two daughters. In 1882 he was appointed a charter member of the Royal Society of Canada, and in 1903 he was elected its president. He was the author of The Fenian raid at Fort Erie (Toronto, 1866), Modern cavalry (London, 1868), A history of cavalry (London, 1877), Soldiering in Canada (Toronto, 1900), The struggle for imperial unity (Toronto, 1909), and Recollections of a police magistrate (Toronto, 1920).


Source: W. Stewart WALLACE, The Encyclopedia of Canada, Vol. II, Toronto, University Associates of Canada, 1948, 411p., p. 197.

© 2007 Claude Bélanger, Marianopolis College