Ward Chipman

Ward Chipman, lawyer, public servant, politician (b at Marblehead, Mass 30 July 1754; d at Fredericton 9 Feb 1824).

Chipman, Ward

Ward Chipman, lawyer, public servant, politician (b at Marblehead, Mass 30 July 1754; d at Fredericton 9 Feb 1824). As a graduate of Harvard College (1770) who assisted the LOYALIST forces during the American Revolution, he helped organize the agitation which led to the creation of New Brunswick in 1784. He became the colony's solicitor general, drafted the charter for the city of Saint John, and as clerk of the Crown acted as crown prosecutor in most criminal cases for some 25 years. His law office was a Mecca for students.

Chipman's arguments in defence of a black slave in 1800 contributed to the gradual disappearance of legal slavery in NB. An MLA 1785-95, he was appointed to the council in 1806 and became a judge of the Supreme Court in 1809. As British agent to 2 commissions established to determine the boundary with Maine, he successfully upheld NB's claim to much of the disputed territory. Before his death, he briefly administered the government of the colony. He was arguably the most influential of NB's founding fathers.