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Francis Bond Head

From Academic Kids

Sir Francis Bond Head (1 January 179320 July 1875) was Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada during the Rebellion of 1837.

Bond Head was a soldier in the British army from 1811 - 1825, and afterwards attempted to set up a mining company in Argentina. He was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada in 1836 in an attempt by the British government to appease the reformers in the colony, such as William Lyon Mackenzie, who wanted responsible government. He appointed reformer Robert Baldwin to the Executive Council, though this appointment was opposed by the more radical Mackenzie. In any case he ignored Baldwin's advice, and Baldwin resigned; the Legislative Assembly then refused to pass any money bills, so Bond Head dissolved the government. In the subsequent election campaign, he appealed to the United Empire Loyalists of the colony, proclaiming that the reformers were advocating American republicanism. The Conservative party, led by the wealthy landowners known as the "Family Compact", won the election.

In December of 1837, Mackenzie led a brief and bungled rebellion in Toronto. Bond Head sent the colonial militia to put down the rebellion, which they did within an hour, although Colonel Moodie was killed by the rebels. In response to the rebellion, Britain replaced Bond Head as Lieutenant-Governor with Lord Durham. Bond Head left Canada and never returned to politics.

Two hamlets are named for him: one to the northwest of Toronto in the town of Bradford West Gwillimbury (formerly West Gwillimbury and Tecumseth townships) and one on Lake Ontario in the municipality of Clarington (formerly Clarke township) to the east of Toronto.

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