Sir Edmund Walker Head

Sir Edmund Walker Head, 8th Baronet, scholar, public servant, lieutenant-governor of New Brunswick 1848-54, governor general of British North America 1854-61, governor of the HUDSON'S BAY CO 1863-68 (b at Wiarton Place, near

Edmund Head, scholar, public servant, lieutenant-governor
Portrait of Sir Edmund Head, Governor General of Canada, 1805-68, by Th\u00e9ophile Hamel (courtesy House of Commons, Speaker's Office).

Head, Sir Edmund Walker

Sir Edmund Walker Head, 8th Baronet, scholar, public servant, lieutenant-governor of New Brunswick 1848-54, governor general of British North America 1854-61, governor of the HUDSON'S BAY CO 1863-68 (b at Wiarton Place, near Maidstone, Eng 16 Feb 1805; d at London, Eng 28 Jan 1868). He was educated at Oxford, where he took first-class honours in classics at Oriel College and was elected a fellow of Merton. An author, editor and translator, Head wrote articles on law, government, language and philology as well as ballads and poems. He served on the Poor Law commission 1836-47 and was appointed lieutenant-governor of NB in 1848. An able administrator, Head helped to prepare NB for full RESPONSIBLE GOVERNMENT. His interest in defence, railways and a larger British North American federation made him a logical choice for the post of governor general of BNA in 1854. Head's refusal to grant George BROWN dissolution of the House during the DOUBLE SHUFFLE of 1858 caused considerable controversy. As the visitor to King's College (UNB) and McGill, Head contributed to their midcentury reorganization.


Further Reading

  • D.G.G. Kerr, Sir Edmund Head (1954).