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The Fathers of Confederation at the London Conference, 1866 Copyright/Source

One of the most familiar historical images in Canada is the painting of the Fathers of Confederation. These gentlemen, the delegates to the Confederation Conferences, included John A. Macdonald, George-Étienne Cartier, Thomas D'Arcy McGee, Charles Tupper and George Brown. They were probably the most prominent figures involved in Canada's creation. However, they were not the only important people. Many others, not all of them supporters of union, played a part in the formation of our country prior to 1867. As the nation continued to grow in the years following Confederation, each new province and territory had its "founders," from the notorious, to the eccentric, to the trailblazing.

In this section you will find a collection of biographies for many of the people involved in the creation and building of Canada. Some of these people are well known, while others are relatively obscure. They are arranged alphabetically, and by the province or territory with which they are associated. "Fathers," those present at the Charlottetown, Québec and/or London Conferences, are indicated by an asterisk.

Amagoalik, John
Anawak, Jack
Archibald, Sir Adams George*
Baldwin, Robert
Bennett, Charles James Fox
Black, John
Bradley, F. Gordon
Brown, George*
Bulyea, George Hedley Vicars
Campbell, Sir Alexander*
Carter, Sir F. B. T.*
Cartier, Sir George-Étienne*
Cashin, Peter J.
Cauchon, Joseph-Édouard
Chandler, Edward Barron*
Chapais, Jean-Charles*
Cockburn, James*
Coles, George*
Craig, Sir James Henry
Curley, Tagak
De Cosmos, Amor
Dickey, Robert Barry*
Dorion, Sir Antoine-Aimé
Dorion, Jean-Baptiste-Éric
Douglas, Thomas, Earl of Selkirk
Fisher, Charles*
Fitzpatrick, Sir Charles
Galt, Sir Alexander Tilloch*
Gordon, Arthur Hamilton
Gray, John Hamilton* (N.B.)
Gray, John Hamilton* (P.E.I)
Haultain, Sir Frederick William Alpin Gordon
Haviland, Thomas Heath*
Helmcken, John Sebastian
Henry, William Alexander*
Howe, Joseph
Howland, Sir William Pearce*
Ittinuar, Peter
Johnson, John Mercer*
Kusugak, Jose
La Fontaine, Sir Louis-Hippolyte
Laird, David

Lambton, John George
Langevin, Sir Hector-Louis*
Macdonald, Andrew Archibald*
Macdonald, Sir John A.*
Macdonald, John Sandfield
Mackenzie, William Lyon
Maksagak, Helen Mamayaok
McCully, Jonathan*
McDougall, William*
McGee, Thomas D'Arcy*
Mitchell, Peter*
Mowat, Sir Oliver*
Mulock, Sir William
Okalik, Paul
Palmer, Edward*
Papineau, Louis-Joseph
Pope, James Colledge
Pope, William Henry*
Riel, Louis
Ritchie, John William*
Ritchot, Noël-Joseph
Robson, John
Ross, James Hamilton
Ross, John
Salaberry, Charles-René-Léonidas d'Irumberry de
Scott, Alfred H.
Scott, Thomas Walter
Shea, Sir Ambrose*
Sifton, Sir Clifford
Smallwood, Joseph "Joey"
Steele, Sir Samuel Benfield
Steeves, William Henry*
Taché, Alexandre-Antonin
Taché, Sir Étienne-Paschal*
Taché, Joseph-Charles
Thibault, Jean-Baptiste
Tilley, Sir Samuel Leonard*
Tupper, Sir Charles*
Walsh, Sir Albert
Walsh, James Morrow
Whelan, Edward*
Wilmot, Robert Duncan*

By Province or Territory

Alberta

Bulyea, George Hedley Vicars
Fitzpatrick, Sir Charles
Haultain, Sir Frederick William Alpin Gordon
Mulock, Sir William
Ross, James Hamilton
Scott, Thomas Walter
Sifton, Sir Clifford

British Columbia

De Cosmos, Amor
Helmcken, John Sebastian
Robson, John

Manitoba

Black, John
Douglas, Thomas, Earl of Selkirk
McDougall, William*
Riel, Louis
Ritchot, Noël-Joseph
Salaberry, Charles-René-Léonidas d'Irumberry de
Scott, Alfred H.
Taché, Alexandre-Antonin
Thibault, Jean-Baptiste

New Brunswick

Chandler, Edward Barron*
Fisher, Charles*
Gordon, Arthur Hamilton
Gray, John Hamilton*
Johnson, John Mercer*
Mitchell, Peter*
Steeves, William Henry*
Tilley, Sir Samuel Leonard*
Wilmot, Robert Duncan*

Newfoundland

Bennett, Charles James Fox
Bradley, F. Gordon
Carter, Sir F. B. T. *
Cashin, Peter J.
Shea, Sir Ambrose*
Smallwood, Joseph "Joey"
Walsh, Sir Albert

Northwest Territories

Haultain, Sir Frederick William Alpin Gordon
Laird, David

Nova Scotia

Archibald, Sir Adams George*
Dickey, Robert Barry*
Henry, William Alexander*
Howe, Joseph
McCully, Jonathan*
Ritchie, John William*
Tupper, Sir Charles*

Nunavut

Amagoalik, John
Anawak, Jack
Curley, Tagak
Ittinuar, Peter
Kusugak, Jose
Maksagak, Helen Mamayaok
Okalik, Paul

Ontario

Baldwin, Robert
Brown, George*
Campbell, Sir Alexander*
Cockburn, James*
Craig, Sir James Henry
Howland, Sir William Pearce*
Lambton, John George
Macdonald, Sir John A.*
Macdonald, John Sandfield
Mackenzie, William Lyon
Mowat, Sir Oliver*
Ross, John

Prince Edward Island

Coles, George*
Gray, John Hamilton*
Haviland, Thomas Heath*
Laird, David
Macdonald, Andrew Archibald*
Palmer, Edward*
Pope, James Colledge
Pope, William Henry*
Whelan, Edward*

Quebec

Cartier, Sir George-Étienne*
Cauchon, Joseph-Édouard
Chapais, Jean-Charles
Craig, James Henry
Dorion, Sir Antoine-Aimé
Dorion, Jean-Baptiste-Éric
Galt, Sir Alexander Tilloch*
La Fontaine, Sir Louis-Hyppolite
Lambton, John George
Langevin, Sir Hector-Louis*
McGee, Thomas D'Arcy*
Papineau, Louis-Joseph
Taché, Sir Étienne-Paschal*
Taché, Joseph-Charles

Saskatchewan

Bulyea, George Hedley Vicars
Fitzpatrick, Sir Charles
Haultain, Sir Frederick William Alpin Gordon
Mulock, Sir William
Ross, James Hamilton
Scott, Thomas Walter
Sifton, Sir Clifford

Yukon Territory

Steele, Sir Samuel Benfield
Walsh, James Morrow

SOURCE: Library and Archives Canada