James Dunsmuir

James Dunsmuir ( born July 8, 1851 in Fort Vancouver, † June 6, 1920 at the Cowichan Bay) was a Canadian politician and industrialist. From 15 June 1900 to 21 November 1902 he was Prime Minister of the Province of British Columbia, May 1906 to December 1909 Lieutenant Governor. The son of Robert Dunsmuirs, who had built up a coal, shipping and railway empire dominated by the turn of the century economic events on Vancouver Iceland and was the richest man in the province.

Studies and business management

Dunsmuir was the Hudson 's Bay Company trading post at Fort Vancouver born when his parents Robert Dunsmuir (1825-1889) and Joan Olive White (1828-1908) emigrated from Scotland to Vancouver Iceland. He spent his school years in Nanaimo. His father was rich with the discovery and development of coal resources, which enabled him to send his son a good education. James Dunsmuir attended boarding school in Dundas and studied mine construction at the Virginia Agricultural and Mechanical College in Blacksburg. He married Laura Surles and returned in 1876 with her back to Nanaimo.

In the rapidly expanding business of his father Dunsmuir was mine manager. He also constructed along with two employees against a schema in the journal Scientific American, the first phone in British Columbia. In the second half of the 1880s Dunsmuir received more and more skills and began to open new coal coming in Comox. The father died in April 1889; the greater part of the share package he had inherited from his wife. During the next 17 years James Dunsmuir went legal action against his mother and sisters. He managed to bring the family group step by step under his control. In 1899 he founded the city of Ladysmith on the southeast coast of Vancouver Iceland.

Political offices

In July 1898, Dunsmuir was as MP for the constituency in the Legislative Assembly of select Comox British Columbia ( until 1903 there were no political parties in the province ). He soon gained great influence and Vice Governor Thomas Robert McInnes appointed him on June 15, 1900 the new Prime Minister.

The government objected to widespread demands to restrict the immigration of Asians. But not you did this for humanitarian reasons, but to allow the rapidly expanding economy, the employment of cheap labor. The government sponsored the construction of railways and set up a new division of the constituencies by which contributed to the population growth on the mainland account. Dunsmuir did not like the policy and resigned on 21 November 1902 to devote himself increasingly to his enterprise. Reluctantly, he allowed himself to be persuaded to accept the office of Lieutenant Governor on May 26, 1906. This he held until December 11, 1909.

More life

1905 Dunsmuir sold the Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway, founded by his father at the Canadian Pacific Railway. In 1906, after he had become lieutenant governor, he bought in Colwood, a western suburb of Victoria, extensive grounds. There he settled Hartley Castle building, a neo-gothic estate with 40 rooms in the style of a Scottish government residence. In 1910 he sold his coal mines and its other industrial property for $ 11 million and spent the rest of his life hunting and fishing trips, as well as sailing on his 66 meter yacht Dolaura. He died at the age of 68 years in his fishing hut at the Cowichan Bay.

On July 5, 1876 Dunsmuir Laura Miller Surles ( 1858-1937 ) married in Fayetteville, North Carolina. They had three sons and nine daughters. His eldest son succumbed to alcoholism, the second eldest son James died in May 1915, the sinking of the RMS Lusitania by a German U- boat. One of his daughters, Muriel, was from 1923 to 1924, the first wife of the fashion designer Edward Molyneux. She and her siblings squandered within a generation the entire family fortune.