Herbert Alexander Bruce

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Herbert Bruce
Herbert Alexander Bruce.jpg
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Parkdale
In office
1940–1946
Preceded by David Spence
Succeeded by Harold Timmins
15th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario
In office
November 1, 1932 – November 23, 1937
Monarch George V
Edward VIII
George VI
Governor General The Earl of Bessborough
The Lord Tweedsmuir
Premier George Stewart Henry
Mitchell Hepburn
Preceded by William Mulock
Succeeded by Albert Edward Matthews
Personal details
Born Herbert Alexander Bruce
(1868-09-28)September 28, 1868
Blackstock, Ontario
Died June 23, 1963(1963-06-23) (aged 94)
Toronto, Ontario
Political party Progressive Conservative
Profession surgeon, professor

Herbert Alexander Bruce FRCS (September 28, 1868 – June 23, 1963), served as the 15th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, Canada, from 1932 to 1937.

Born in Blackstock, Ontario near Port Perry, Bruce was educated as a surgeon at the University of Toronto and in Paris and Vienna. He was a member of the Royal College of Surgeons. He owned Wellesley Hospital in Toronto which he founded in 1911, and was a professor of surgery at the University of Toronto.

In 1916, during World War I, he was appointed inspector-general of the Canadian Army Medical Corps by Sir Sam Hughes, and attained the rank of colonel in the Canadian Army (Permanent Active Militia).

Bruce investigated medical practices in the army and issued a Report on the Canadian Army Medical Service which urged a complete reorganization of the medical corps. His report was disowned by the government at the time and he was dismissed from his duties, though many of his recommendations were ultimately implemented. In 1919, he published Politics and the Canadian Army Medical Corps, criticizing the government for its actions.

In 1920, Bruce purchased a farm on Bayview Avenue overlooking the Don Valley and built a Tudor-style mansion which he named Annandale.

In 1932, he was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Ontario by R.B. Bennett for a term that lasted until 1937. He often verbally clashed with new Ontario Premier Mitch Hepburn who attempted to curtail the extravagance of the vice-regal office in the face of the Great Depression. The lieutenant-governor's official residence, Chorley Park, was closed by the Hepburn government at the end of Bruce's term on the pretext of cutting costs.

While most lieutenant-governors are former politicians, Bruce took the unusual step of entering politics following his term as the King's representative. Following the sudden death of Conservative MP David Spence in the middle of the 1940 federal election campaign, Bruce contested and won Spence's seat in the Canadian House of Commons in the 1940 federal election. Sitting as the Conservative Member of Parliament for Parkdale, Bruce was an outspoken advocate of conscription. He was re-elected to a second term in the 1945 federal election, but retired from office in 1946.

His autobiography, Varied Operations, was published in 1958. He died in Toronto on June 23, 1963. He is buried in section Q-143 in Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Toronto.

The gravestone of Bruce (section Q-143) in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery

External links[edit]