Sir William Young

Sir William Young, lawyer, politician, judge, philanthropist (b at Falkirk, Scot 8 Sept 1799; d at Halifax 8 May 1887). A political opportunist, Young maneuvered his career to achieve 2 goals: the office of premier and that of chief justice.

Young, Sir William

Sir William Young, lawyer, politician, judge, philanthropist (b at Falkirk, Scot 8 Sept 1799; d at Halifax 8 May 1887). A political opportunist, Young maneuvered his career to achieve 2 goals: the office of premier and that of chief justice. He entered the NS legislature in 1836 as a Reformer (Liberal) and achieved prominence defending Reform journalists in several heated libel cases. He tailored his political climb, hoping to become first premier under RESPONSIBLE GOVERNMENT in 1848, but lost to J.B. UNIACKE, whom he succeeded in 1854. Young's leadership was not outstanding, and was marred by indecision, flagrant patronage and growing religious-political turmoil. In 1860 he resigned to accept the pinnacle of his aspirations - the office of chief justice. His later life was marked by great philanthropy, which brought power and acclaim to a man once described as "so tricky a character that he probably never ate his dinner without a stratagem."