|Sir Henry Pellatt|
Major-General Sir Henry Pellatt, CVO
January 6, 1859|
Kingston, Ontario, Canada
|Died||March 8, 1939
Mimico, Ontario, Canada
He is perhaps best known for his role in bringing hydro-electricity to Toronto, Ontario for the first time, and also for his famous château, called Casa Loma, in Toronto, which was the largest private residence ever constructed in Canada. Casa Loma would eventually become a famous landmark of the city. His summer home and farm in King City later became Mary Lake Augustinian Monastery.
He was educated at Upper Canada College before leaving in 1876 to join his father's stock brokerage company, Pellatt and Osler, as a clerk. In 1882, Osler and Pellatt parted ways, and Henry Jr. completed his apprenticeship and became a full member of the stock exchange. In the following year, Henry Pellatt Sr. set up a partnership with his son under the name Pellatt and Pellatt.
Pellatt enlisted as a Rifleman with The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada on November 2, 1876. In 1882 he married Mary Dodgson, who later became Lady Pellatt when he was created a Knight Bachelor by Edward VII in 1905 for his service with The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada.
In 1910, Sir Henry took the entire 600 man regiment (including its horses) to England for military training at his expense to mark the Regiment's 50th anniversary. The military exercises lasted from 13 August to 3 October.
Much of Pellatt's fortune was made through investments in the hydro electricity and railway industries in Canada. The strain of maintaining his large castle led him to ill-advised real estate investments which were unsuccessful. The Province expropriated his electrical power generating business, and his aircraft manufacturing business was later taken over as part of the war effort during World War I. Combined, these difficulties led to his near bankruptcy and forced him and Lady Pellatt to leave Casa Loma. Sir Henry Pellatt, virtually penniless, spent his final days at his chauffeur's home in the Toronto suburb of Mimico where he died.
Pellatt was promoted to the rank of Major-General upon his retirement from The Queen's Own Rifles regiment and made a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) in 1910. When he died on March 8, 1939, thousands lined Toronto streets to witness his funeral procession. He was buried with full military honours.
He was born in Kingston, Ontario, the son of Henry Pellatt (1830-1909), a Glasgow-born stockbroker in Toronto, and Emma Mary (née Holland) Pellatt, and was thus descended from the famous glassmaker Apsley Pellatt (1763–1826). He married twice, first to Mary Dodgson in Toronto in 1882 and, after Mary's 1924 death, Catharine Welland Merritt in Toronto in 1927. He had one son with his first wife, Reginald, born in 1885.
He had three sisters and two brothers, Fred Pellatt (grandfather of Toronto freelance writer John Pellatt) and Mill Pellatt (father of Mary Katherine Pellatt). The latter brother was paymaster of the Toronto Electric Light Company, a job obtained by Sir Henry. His sisters were Mary Kate, Marian Maria and Emily Mountford Pellatt. One of his nieces, Beatrix Hamilton, was married to Canadian economist and humourist Stephen Leacock.
Pellatt built Bailey House at the bend in Lake Shore near Fleeceline overlooking the commercial stretch on Lake Shore, in Mimico. He moved in with his chauffeur, and it was in that house Pellatt died in 1939. He is buried at Forest Lawn Mausoleum in Toronto.
Several biographies have been written about Pellatt. In particular, Carlie Oreskovich's "The King of Casa Loma" gives a detailed and thorough account.
His great-grandniece Trelawny Linda Howell also curates a website dedicated to his memory, CasaLomaTrust.ca.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Henry Pellatt.|
- Flint, David. Sir Henry Pellatt: the King of Casa Loma (book review), Canadian Historical Review, December 1983, pp. 573(2). Gale Document Number:A3033604. Retrieved 25 Sept. 2009.
- Ford, Tom. "Canada's water power", Winnipeg Free Press, Winnipeg, MB, April 28, 2008, pg.13, ISSN 0828-1785, Accession Number: 7BS7BS1111185262. Retrieved 25 Sept. 2009.
- Freeman, Bill and Pietropaolo, Vincenzo. Toronto's Fairy-Tale Castle and Its Owner, Sir Henry Pellatt, James Lorimer, 1999, ISBN 1-55028-595-5, ISBN 978-1-55028-595-6.
- Globe & Mail. "Fight Will Centre on M'naught Bill: Measure Gives Great Scope To Hydro-Electric Commission: Sir Henry Pellatt Asks That Legislative Inquiry Be Started", The Globe & Mail, Toronto, March 13, 1911, pp. 1,9. Retrieved 25 Sept. 2009.
- Oreskovich, Carlie with forward by Sinclair, Gordon. Sir Henry Pellatt, the King of Casa Loma, McGraw-Hill Ryerson, Toronto, 1982, ISBN 0-07-548456-0, ISBN 978-0-07-548456-1.
- Report on Business Magazine. 75 years ago: Auction of Contents of Henry Pellatt's Casa Loma. Report on Business Magazine, Toronto, July 1999: pg.234. Gale Document Number: A30527643. Retrieved 25 September 2009.
- Time Magazine. Canada: Stable Sonics, Time Magazine, October 28, 1946. An interesting account of the 4,800 ASDIC sonar devices secretly manufactured at Casa Loma during WWII. Retrieved 25 Sept. 2009.
- Official website of Casa Loma
- Casa Loma Trust - Website curated by Casa Loma advocate Trelawny Howell, descendent of Sir Henry Pellatt and Lady Mary Pellatt.
|Knight Principal of the Imperial Society of Knights Bachelor
Sir William Bull, 1st Baronet