Ontario's Historical Plaques 


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Thomas McKay 1792-1855

Thomas McKay 1792-1855

Photo by contributor Dawn Monroe - Posted October, 2004

Thomas McKay 1792-1855

Photo from Google Street View ©2010 Google - Posted December, 2010

Plaque Location

The City of Ottawa
In the park at the corner of Sussex Drive and John Street


Coordinates: N 45 26.562 W 75 41.615

Map

Plaque Text

Born in Scotland, McKay emigrated to Canada about 1817 and worked as a mason in Montreal until 1826, when he began building the entrance locks of the Rideau Canal and the first bridge across the Ottawa River joining present-day Ottawa and Hull. In 1829 McKay acquired land where the Rideau River met the Ottawa. Here he laid out the village of New Edinburgh, and established an industrial complex which by 1848 included two-sawmills, a grist-mill, woollen factory and distillery. In 1838 McKay built his residence, Rideau Hall, a two storey stone structure used after 1865 to house Canada's governors-general. Active in municipal and provincial politics, McKay sat on Bytown's first council (1828) represented Russell in the Legislative Assembly (1834-41), and served on the Legislative Council (1841-55).

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