William Kennedy

William Kennedy, explorer (b probably at Cumberland House, Rupert's Land 26 Apr 1814; d at St Andrews, Red River Settlement 25 Jan 1890).

Kennedy, William

William Kennedy, explorer (b probably at Cumberland House, Rupert's Land 26 Apr 1814; d at St Andrews, Red River Settlement 25 Jan 1890). He was the son of a fur-trading father and an Indian mother, was educated in the Orkney Islands and worked for the HUDSON'S BAY CO, 1833-46, serving mostly at posts in Québec. In 1851-52 he led the 13th expedition in search of Sir John FRANKLIN. In what was unknown territory, he and Joseph-René Bellot sledged along the east coast of Somerset Island, crossed BELLOT STRAIT to Ommanney Bay on Prince of Wales Island, then trekked north to Cape Walker and back to base at Batty Bay. Kennedy settled at St Andrews, Man. He was a strong advocate of the annexation of RUPERT'S LAND to Canada and worked diligently for an all-Canadian route from Toronto to the RED RIVER COLONY, and for the development of the seaport at Churchill.