Irish-born December 2, 1921, Padraig helped create the
Yukon territorial government as he had shaped an
independent Somalia. He was known as Paud (pronounced Podge). Paud was a competitive sportsman - won best in Ireland for javelin, discus and swimming and earned his caps for playing on the Irish International Rugby Team. After graduating law at University College Dublin and King's Inns Law School, he was called to the bar in 1945, his practice as a barrister beginning as a junior. He completed a tenure in the British colonial legal service where, among other things, he helped ease Somalia into independence and, by 1960, he had risen to attorney general of the British protectorate.
The family returned to Ireland in 1962 where he farmed pigs and chickens and continued to practice law, receiving payment in kind from clients who couldn’t afford to pay. His daughter Patricia“Patch” O’Donoghue said “He intended to retire but he couldn’t get away from the law”.
In 1966, following his brother Walter, Paud immigrated to Canada with Joan and their seven children. He was called to the Alberta Bar. He was a voracious reader with encyclopedic recall, which he sometimes used to comic effect - blessed with the Irish “gift of the gab.” He practiced law in Alberta for five years before piling the family into the car and driving to Whitehorse to take up the post of legal adviser to the new Yukon government as it evolved from colony to territory. O’Donoghue worked as legal adviser to the new territorial government from 1967 to 1983, during the critical stage of the development of the territorial government. He ended his career in Yukon in 1983 as Deputy Minister of Justice.
A labour arbitrator from 1975 until early 1990's and a Refugee Hearing Officer for the Government of Canada 1989-94., he was a trailblazer who never shied away from conflict or controversy, nor was he a man of few words. His oratory skills served him well when making his case before courts and commissions and when regaling friends and family with his stories. He was well known for writing clever and effective correspondence and drafting legislation. His passion for the English language prompted him to contact the Oxford English Dictionary regarding word omissions and in appreciation they presented him with a complete set.
He developed a friendship with Canadian artist Ted Harrison, who with his art students painted a pair of murals on the O’Donoghue house — a must-see tour-bus stop for years. Bridal parties were also attracted to the house for the beautiful garden, aided by grow lights and Paud’s vast research on what would grow up north. They won a “silver tray” for best Whitehorse garden. He also had time to teach duplicate bridge, at which he excelled — he and Joan won so many crystal glasses at their weekly bridge club, the family used them as everyday drinking glasses.
After a couple of heart attacks forced his retirement at age 62, he and Joan moved to Richmond. In retirement in Vancouver he spent his time appearing in TV shows and movies shot in B.C., including 21 Jump Street, MacGyver and the Ted Danson movie Cousins. He also worked as a movie extra and served as a refugee hearing officer. And he took up acrylic painting, recreating scenes from the north, Ireland and Africa, and painting portraits of friends and family. He never stopped learning or telling great stories. Tracy McLaughlin, a Richmond neighbour and friend for 10 years, said: “He was probably one of the most wonderful storytellers of all. He was a brilliant legal mind and he loved the law.”
May 17, 2009, Padraig (Paud) O'Donoghue died peacefully in Richmond Hospital at the age of 87 after a full and adventurous life.
William Ivan Clarke Wuttunee
McGill University Scholarship Award
first First Nations lawyer in Western Canada Co-founder and first National Chief of the National Indian Council (NIC).
French played an significant role in the history of Canada. Born out of a need for a national police force to implement
the law in Canada's newly acquired western territories, the North West Mounted Police was founded. It was French who organized and firmly established that force we know now as the Royal Canadian Mounted Police which has evolved into world-renowned organization of more than 28,000 people.
George Arthur French was born 19 June, 1841, in Roscommon, Ireland, son of John and Isabella (Hamilton) French. He started his military education at Sandhurst, but transferred to the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich (London) and became a gunner, which suggests that his family was not well-to-do. Commissions in the Royal Artillery were not purchased as were those in infantry and cavalry regiments.
Appointed lieutenant on 19 June, 1860, he served with the RA in Kingston from 1862 to 1866. On December 18, 1862, he married Janet Clarke in Kingston, Upper Canada. They had two sons and three daughters.
In 1869 he was seconded to the Canadian militia as inspector of artillery and warlike stores. Though promoted lieutenant-colonel, a rank he would not achieve in the army until Oct. 1887, he probably accepted the move as much for monetary as for career considerations. Conscious of the withdrawal of the imperial forces from Canada, French urged the Dept. of Militia and Defence, in his report of 1 Jan. 1870, “the absolute necessity of raising, permanently, a few batteries of garrison artillery.” To his recommendation he appended estimates for two batteries. In response the department moved to establish permanent schools of artillery in Kingston and Quebec City for training the militia. He retained his inspector-ship, and was authorized on 20 Oct. 1871 to set up and command Kingston’s School of Gunnery (A Battery, Garrison Artillery).
When the government of Sir John A. Macdonald created the North-West Mounted Police in 1873, the choice of who would be its first commissioner was of the utmost importance. There was no shortage of applicants, but this competent commander who had served briefly in the Royal Irish Constabulary before entering the army which was an important model for them.
He took over as commissioner on 16 Oct. 1873. News of the massacre in the Cypress Hills (Alta/Sask.) of Hunkajuka and some of his followers by a band of Canadian and American traders and hunters had forced the government to advance: 150 recruits and several officers were sent to Winnipeg, where they began training. In January 1874, having assessed his command, French returned to Toronto to raise a second contingent.
French, 16 officers, 201 men, and 244 horses boarded special trains on 6 June and travelled west through Chicago to Fargo (N.Dakota.). From there they rode north to Dufferin, Man., where they met the group who had wintered in Winnipeg. French’s instructions were to take his force west to what is now southern Alberta and stop the whiskey trade being conducted from the Montana Territory. The plan for the journey, which became known as the Long March, was to follow a route just north of the 49th parallel in order to take advantage of the camps and caches established by the international boundary surveyors, but reports of fighting near the border between natives and the United States army caused Ottawa to order French to stay well north. The change created serious difficulties for the NWMP. The only available map of the region, prepared by John Palliser’s expedition of 1857, turned out to be inaccurate; guides could not be found; and the police were unable to locate feed and water for their horses. At the end of July, nearly a month after the march had begun, French sent a troop and the sickest horses north along the Carlton Trail to the Hudson’s Bay Company’s Fort Edmonton. He moved on across the trackless prairie, pushing his weary men westward until they reached recognizable territory. On 18 September they halted and established a camp in the Sweet Grass Hills, Alberta/Montana border.
He took a party south to Fort Benton, Montana, to obtain horses and supplies, to telegraph Ottawa and to gather evidence about the Cypress Hills massacre. With the government’s approval he left most of his force and headed for a site that had been chosen in Ottawa near the proposed rail line. The site was no where near any First Nation communities and was barren, swept by fire. French, though he had no jurisdiction in Manitoba, wisely moved his headquarters south to Dufferin.
When French returned to Swan River in the spring of 1875, whilst he loyally tried to make it habitable, he lobbied strenuously to have his headquarters moved to Fort Macleod (Alta), where most of the force’s actual policing was centered.
Unfortunately the new prime minister, Alexander Mackenzie, was exceedingly parsimonious and he and his cabinet harboured grave doubts about the wisdom of creating the NWMP in the first place. French resigned in July 1876. To his credit, his officers and men showed a great a great appreciation for his leadership giving him a gold watch worth $150 (a large sum for the time) and Mrs French a silver service. The British government also recognized his efforts, with a Companion (of the Order) of St Michael and St George on 30 May, 1877.
He went back to postings with the Royal Artillery in England and appointments in Australia and India. He was commandant of the colonial forces in Queensland in 1883 where, in 1885, he reorganized the defence force under legislation drafted by French and based on Canada’s system. His last appointment was as commandant of the colonial forces was in New South Wales where he was promoted major-general. He retired in September 1902 and was made Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George that year. His wife, Janet, died in 1917. French lived in London until his death in 1921.
Tony O’Loughlin, born 1949, in Belfast, grew up on Bingnan Drive and Norfolk Drive, at the top of the Falls Road. He was educated at St Theresa’s, St Finian’s and St MacNissis College.
In the early 1970’s, at the height of the Troubles, Tony worked in the community at Divis Flats in the lower Falls, Belfast. For Tony, the Troubles provided some of the drive and feelings of responsibility he had to promote Irish culture. It was from family, school teachers and the Belfast community that Tony acquired his enduring love and respect for Irish culture. “If a Peoples can not militarily be defeated then they will be assimilated by wiping out their culture. If they loose their culture they lose their identity.”
Tony migrated to Canada in 1977 to volunteer with Bishop O’Grady in the B.C. interior where he worked mainly with the First Nations people for 4 years. He remained in Prince George for 10 years where he founded and, for many years, ran the Prince George Celtic Club which recently celebrated their 30 year anniversary. In 1987, he relocated to Nepean, Ontario in 1987 and, in 1989, to Kingston, Ontario where, a year later he founded and directed Kingston Irish Folk Club.
An article in the April 1990 Kingston Whig Standard newspaper stated that remains had been dug up while working on steam lines on the grounds of Kingston General Hospital. The remains were part of an unmarked mass grave of an estimated 1,400 Irish Famine victims buried on the hospital grounds in 1847. The hospital had expanded and built over the mass grave but did not put a marker there. He was surprised that there were no plaques or monuments except for the Angel of Mercy monument in an obscure corner of St Mary’s cemetery. Kingston, the Heart of Loyalist Canada, a city proud of its history, had many historical markers but none to acknowledge the mass grave of an estimated 1,400 on the grounds of Kingston General Hospital nor the estimated 300 Kingstonians who died helping the Irish Famine victims.
He founded The Kingston Irish Famine Commemoration Assoc (1995). and took a lead role to erect a plaque to mark the exact spot of the Irish mass grave and a Celtic Cross monument in the newly named An Gorta Mór Park to acknowledge Kingston’s estimated 1,500 Irish Famine victims (erected 1998). He also initiated and took a lead role in the Kingston Irish folk club to erect a Celtic Cross monument in Kingston’s upper cemetery (1813 till 1865) where an estimated 10,000 mainly Irish and Scottish immigrants are buried. Moreover, whilst there have been many monuments erected to Col. By it was not until Tony again took the initiative and lead role in 2000 directing the Kingston Irish Folk Club that the first monument anywhere along the Rideau Canal to acknowledge the labourers was erected - a memorial drinking fountain across the road from Kingston City.
1920s-30s: Each Sunday afternoon, large crowds paid their 10 cents and cheered on the “Circle F” Fraser Mills baseball team challenging Seattle, New Westminster, and the Asahi team from Vancouver.
Born. 6 July 1856 near Oshawa, Upper Canada, son of Michael O’Byrne (Byrn, Byrne) and Bridget Gibson; he moved in 1864, with his parents, both Irish Catholic immigrants, and seven siblings from the Oshawa region to a farm near the village of Kirkfield, about 50 miles north. Here he received a rudimentary education at the local school.
In 1877 Patrick and his elder brother John decided to homestead in Manitoba. To raise money Patrick felled trees during the winter of 1877-78. When he went in the spring to collect $100 in back wages, he discovered that his employer was broke. Instead, he had to accept a team of elderly oxen worth about $70. To get as much value as possible out of the animals he slaughtered them and sold their carcasses piece by piece, ultimately bringing in $144.
In the spring of 1878 Patrick and John travelled to Winnipeg by rail, stagecoach, and steamboat. They learned that some of the best agricultural land still available was farther west - they set out on foot to find homesteads. After walking more than 100 miles the brothers filed on separate quarter sections at Tanner’s Crossing (Minnedosa). Burns got a job blasting rock, for which he received $24 a month and his board in a construction camp. After six months with enough money to buy a team of oxen and some supplies, he returned to his homestead at Tanner’s Crossing.
His big break came in 1887 when he was engaged to supply meat to construction camps. He established a mobile slaughtering facility which could move easily as the railhead was extended. He employed a reliable butcher to prepare the meat, and handled the buying and droving himself. He also developed contacts with merchants in British Columbia to whom he sold both meat and wholesale livestock. He set up his own retail outlets there. To guarantee supply he bought property and started acquiring cattle. diversified into mutton and pork, then sheep.
In the late 1890s, during the Yukon gold rush, Burns was one of the first to agree to deliver beef to the miners in Dawson. the first time any firm west of Toronto and east of Vancouver had shipped carloads of refrigerated meat such a distance. At Vancouver the meat was placed on a cold-storage steamer bound for the Yukon Territory.
Burns' commercial enterprises continued to grow rapidly In 1905 Burns incorporated his packing and other meat houses under a dominion charter as P. Burns and Company (in 1909 it would become P. Burns and Company Limited). In 1906, following the province’s amendment of the territorial ordinance on brands, he registered his well-known Shamrock brand. Over the next quarter century he established packing plants at Edmonton, Vancouver, Regina, Prince Albert, Sask., Winnipeg, and Seattle. Burns bought out or started more than 100 retail meat shops in the provinces of Alberta and British Columbia and set up export agencies in London, Liverpool, and Yokohama, Japan. Diversifying, he bought or established some 65 creameries and cheese factories across the prairies and wholesale provision and fruit houses.
A source of consternation was public suspicion of unfair dealing that dogged Burns This distrust was a consequence of his meteoric rise as a businessman. He got rich trading in cattle and beef and, under frontier conditions, he faced very little competition.
Burns attained a great deal of public acclaim - Knight Commander of the Order of St Gregory the Great by the Vatican in 1914, a seat in the Senate, which he refused because of his heavy workload - when the offer was made again he was close enough to retirement to accept but would sit as an independent. These tributes were offered in recognition of Burns’ business acumen but they were also acknowledgements of his work for public and charitable causes.
The community-spirited action for which he is probably best known is the organizational and financial backing he contributed to the first Calgary Stampede in 1912. When a rockslide devastated the mining community of Frank (Alta) on 29 April 1903, he was first to offer aid. After the town of Fernie, B.C., was wiped out by fire, he sent its citizens a freight car of food. During World War I he and his company contributed $50,000 to equip the Legion of Frontiersmen. After the war he was made an honorary member of the Calgary Aero (Flying) Club “in token of … [his] interest in aviation and his gift of two airplanes” to support the war effort. A substantial donation to the construction of the Canadian Memorial Church, built by the Revd George Oliver Fallis was to honour those who had served in the war. He contributed to Holy Cross Hospital in Calgary and gave 200 acres of land and a regular supply of meat to the Lacombe Home. While the Catholic church near the Lacombe Home was being painted at his expense, he noticed the shabby condition of the nearby Anglican church and told his workers to paint it too. He provided free office space in one of his Calgary buildings to the Western Stock Growers’ Association and helped improve western dairy herds by arranging to sell good Jersey and Holstein breeding stock to farmers on long-term payment schedules. He gave financial aid to two sisters struggling to establish the Braemar Lodge and supported talented artists. When Calgary celebrated his birthday in 1931, he announced that for each single unemployed man or woman in the city a ticket good for 50 cents, would be issued at his expense for the purchase of food and that to each married unemployed man he would give a five pound roast of beef. ‘I feel,’ he said, ‘that during the Stampede celebration and on the occasion of my 75th birthday, I would like to do something for the citizens who during these difficult times [the Great Depression] are unable to obtain employment.’”
Married in 1901, Burns and Eileen (n Ellis) had one son. In 1936 their 30 year old son was found dead in his bed of a heart attack. Burns himself had suffered a stroke in 1935 and died less than six months after his son. He was buried in St Mary’s Cemetery in Calgary.
Burns was as generous at his death as he had been in his life. Among the beneficiaries named in his will were the Lacombe Home, the Salvation Army, the Children’s Shelter of Calgary, the widows and orphans of men in the city’s police force and fire department, the Roman Catholic bishop of Calgary, the Collège Saint-François-Xavier in Edmonton, the Navy League of Canada, the Canadian Red Cross Society, the Junior Red Cross, the British Empire Service League, the Canadian Legion’s tuberculosis section, the 103rd Regiment (Calgary Highlanders), the Boy Scouts Association in Alberta, and the Southern Alberta Pioneers’ and Old Timers’ Association.
Ed O’Connor was born in Dublin County, Ireland, July 11, 1908. He emigrated to Canada in 1919 with his family. His Father was a retired soldier-immigrant who worked as a cook in logging camps. His Mother was a Registered Nurse. He attended St. Anne Academy and Vancouver College then worked in the BC Sugar Refinery as a labourer until age 20 when he obtained a job as a court registry clerk in the Attorney General’s Department, Vancouver.
Ed and his co-workers believed Provincial Government employees’ working conditions, wages and hours were unfair compared to Federal and Civic Government Employees. He began organizing and participating in meetings to discuss ways to improve conditions for all Provincial Government employees. At a meeting in 1942, the Provincial Civil Service Association of BC was initiated and Ed, in the office of first president, began moving towards a province-wide employee association which would be formed 1945. Having served as Secretary General with distinction of the newly founded B.C. Government Employees Union from 1945 to 1967, Ed retired
He continued his life’s work of improving the working situation and conditions of Canadian workers in Canada by accepting an appointment from the Governor General of Canada, Roland Michener, on behalf of the Privy Council of Canada to sit on the inaugural Public Staff Relations Board of Canada for a seven year term. Ed was the only member on the Board representing the interests and welfare workers and their rights for labour. He administered the collective bargaining and grievance adjudication systems in the federal public service between federal government employees and the Treasury Board (the employer). He tirelessly fought for government workers and on three occasions the dissents he wrote (three of very many) formed the basis of appeals to the Supreme Court of Canada and were upheld by the court. After accepting a second appointment to the Board he retired 11 years later.
In 1962 the Canadian Labour Congress awarded O’Connor as a member of the Executive Council (Vice President) of the Canadian Labour Congress from April 1958 to April 1962. And, in 1967, in recognition of valuable service to the nation, Governor General, Roland Michener conferred Canadian Centennial Medal
Ed O’Connor was also an active community supporter through the Knights of Columbus, United Way, Vancouver College Alumni, Red Cross, Shaughnessy Heights Property Owners Association, Shaughnessy Place Strata Council
Edward Patrick O’Connor died at 96 years of age in Richmond, BC on September 30, 2004.
Settler. Rancher. Burinessman. Polotician.
Acclaimed for his generosity to community and charitable causes.
Henry James Mackin 53
A Legacy of Philanthropy:
Vancouver College, Mackin Park Coquitlam
"You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” – Christopher Columbus
Lawyer. Labour arbitrator. Refugee Hearing Officer. Deputy Minister of Justice
Major General Sir George Arthur French
of the Order of St Michael & St George.
Edward Patrick O'Connor
Vice President) Canadian Labour Congress
Governor General's Award Canadian Centennial Medal in recognittion of valuable service to the nation
Bill Wuttunee was born on May 8, 1928. His father, James, was chief of Red Pheasant Reserve and a teacher off-reserve. His mother, Priscilla, was a midwife. William (Bill) was a direct descendant of and named after the Hon. Lawrence J Clarke Sr. who had been born in 1832, County Cork, Ireland, entered the service of the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1851 and went on to receive his commission as Factor in 1868, Chief Factor of Saskatchewan, Clarke made history when he was elected to represent the Electoral District of Lorne at the first election on the Northwest Council. Clarke died in Prince Albert in 1890.
Did Bill's parents, James and Priscilla, imagine that some 20 years later, the infant they welcomed into their arms there on the Red Pheasant First Nation, a small reserve near Cando, Saskatchewan, would also be making Canadian history? (The province was named from the Cree kisiskāciwani-sīpiy, meaning swift flowing river.)
Growing up in Saskatchewan’s drought and depression, with barrel slats for skis and a sling-shot he’d go winter hunting birds for the family meal until, at the age of 10, he was forced to leave home to attend residential school. There life was harsh. Bill escaped into books. His brother, Noel, took the beatings. Bill testified about his experiences at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, but the residential school was a psychological burden he wanted to leave behind and rarely spoke about it with his family. He served on the Oversight Committees for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and organization responsible for resolving the many thousands of residential school claims. In 2009 he travelled to the Vatican with the AFN to receive an apology from Pope Benedict for the harms perpetrated against native children in residential schools.
Shortly after residential school, when Bill returned to Red Pheasant First Nation reserve at the age of 12, their father, James, moved the family to the nearby town of Battleford, determined that they would have better opportunities.
It was the right move. Bill attended high school and, having earned the highest marks across Canada, he was awarded a scholarship to McGill University. It was the early 50’s. He was an Indian – his place was riding rough on a freight train carrying livestock, eating when they fed the cattle. The train arrived in Montreal at 2 a.m. It was a 4 hr. walk to the pastor’s home where he was being hosted. ‘Too early’ he thought and waited for an hour before knocking on the door. He was making history – one of only two First Nations people attending university in Canada.
Bill returned to study law at the University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, and was called to the bar in 1954 – the first First Nations lawyer in Western Canada. He commenced his practice with the Saskatchewan Government. Insurance Office and actively pursued advancing First Nations rights and independence. Called to the Saskatchewan Provincial Committee of Minorities by Premier T.C. Douglas, in 1958, Bill travelled to every reserve in Saskatchewan. The meeting of chiefs that he organized in Fort Qu’Appelle culminated in the creation of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indians. Douglas’ legislation extending the vote to status Indians was followed by the Federal government in 1960. In 1961, Bill co-founded and was the first National Chief of, the National Indian Council (NIC). This was the first organization to unite the political voice of Aboriginal peoples at a national level. The historic NIC became the National Indian Brotherhood in 1968 - now known as the Assembly of
In 1963 Bill opened a general practice in Calgary and, later, a satellite
office in Yellowknife. Practicing primarily criminal law until the 1980’s. He
defended the last person in Canada to be prosecuted for homosexuality.
Bill was the first native lawyer to appear before the Supreme Court of
Canada. His book, Ruffled Feathers: Indians in Canadian Society, 1970
provoked a strong reaction in some of the native community – Bill
Wuttunnee was making history. William Ivan Clarke Wuttunee passed
away peacefully on October 31, 2015, at the age of 87.
Doug Cuthand native activist and film producer, Saskatchewan:
"Wuttunee was a visionary and you pay a price… there really was nobody ahead of him.”
Henry Mackin was born in July 1884, in New York City to Irish-Catholic parents, Joseph Patrick and Catherine (n Byrne) Mackin.
The Mackin Family arrived in Canada in 1908, having moved across to Oregon State where, after completing a grade 4 education, Henry began factory work as a barely literate child labourer of The Standard Box Company. A mid-day meal was provided and there being little at home, his experience there would shape his optimistic personality that led to his surviving two global wars, the great depression and a violent workers' strike. Moreover the desperation of poverty and racial exclusion drove Mackin to establish his family’s fortune, end up in the pages of Fortune Magazine (January 1954) that reported “A Manhattan-born, intensely sales-minded Canadian, Mackin was until recently president of Canadian Western.” Leading the cohesive and uniquely multi-cultural Canadian Western Lumber workforce at Fraser Mills, B.C., he delivered product - on time … He thrived when faced with apparent insurmountable obstacles. By 1939 Mackin’s lumber producing company was recognized as the largest in the British Empire including the formulation and production of standard Canadian grades.
From a marginalized immigrant background, he was aware of the challenges that faced his mill workers. He took his passion for baseball into the mill and Mackin Park was a gift to the City of Coquitlam that served as the field for mill employee games.
Millworkers owned their own land and were provided with building supplies for their cottage-style housing and access to land for a garden and chickens. This included Japanese, Hindu, Chinese, Greek and French-Canadian workers.
Mackin and his wife Mary started their married life in a modest wooden structure expanded in the mid ’40’s to house a second generation of the Mackin Family.
A Legacy of Philanthropy
Vancouver College was also a beneficiary of Henry Mackin’s gifts… the gymnasium-auditorium construction sod turning ceremony was featured in the Vancouver Sun June 8, 1949. Mackin Hall comprised of cafeteria space, classrooms and science room space opened in 1957.
On December 22, 1958 Henry Mackin died suddenly survived by his wife Mary, a son W. J. Mackin (who also lived in Maillardville and worked at Fraser Mills) and three daughters Josephine Abernethy, Dorothy Markle and Marjorie Oxendale, their spouses. and 15 grandchildren.
Anthoy (Tony) O'Loughlin
Founder of the Prince George, B.C. Celtic Club
Founded The Kingston Irish Famine Commemoration Assoc (1995).
Initiated the Kingston Irish Folk Club installation of the first monument along the Rideau Canal to acknowledge the labourers