James Lyons Biggar

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James Lyons Biggar
Source: Library and Archives Canada

James Lyons Biggar (February 4, 1824 – May 24, 1879) was an Ontario merchant and political figure. He represented Northumberland East in the Canadian House of Commons from 1874 to 1878 as an Independent Liberal.

He was born in Carrying Place, Upper Canada in 1824, the son of Charles Biggar, whose parents had come from Biggar in Scotland. He was educated at Victoria College in Cobourg. In 1846, he married Isabella Hodgins; his wife's brothers, Thomas and John George, became prominent figures in the province.[1] Biggar owned a general store and served as postmaster at Carrying Place. He also served as commissioner in the Court of Queen's Bench there.[2] He represented East Northumberland in the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Canada from 1861 until Confederation.[3] He was defeated by Joseph Keeler for the federal seat in 1872 and then defeated Keeler in 1874; that election was appealed but Biggar won the by-election which followed. In the 1878 general election, he was again defeated by Keeler. Biggar served as a member of the Senate for Victoria College.[3] He died in Clifton Springs, New York at the age of 55.[2]

The Biggars had eleven children:

Mr. Biggar's sister Eliza Maria would marry Charles Stewart Wilson, and their son Herbert Charles Wilson would serve in the legislative assembly for the Northwest Territories.

Biggar Township in Nipissing District was named in his honour.[1]

Electoral record[edit]

Canadian federal election, 1872: East Riding of Northumberland
Party Candidate Votes
     Liberal-Conservative KEELER, Joseph 1,497
     Independent Liberal BIGGAR, J.L. 1,430


Canadian federal election, 1874: East Riding of Northumberland
Party Candidate Votes
     Independent Liberal BIGGAR, James Lyons 1,662
     Liberal-Conservative KEELER, J. 1,497


By-election: On Mr. Biggar being unseated on petition,
12 December 1874: East Riding of Northumberland
Party Candidate Votes
     Independent Liberal BIGGAR, James Lyons 1,670
     Unknown COCKBURN, James 1,385


Canadian federal election, 1878: East Riding of Northumberland
Party Candidate Votes
     Liberal-Conservative KEELER, Joseph 1,799
     Independent Liberal BIGGAR, J.L. 1,736

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Gardner, HF (1899). Nothing but Names. pp. 504–5. 
  2. ^ a b Johnson, J.K. (1968). The Canadian Directory of Parliament 1867-1967. Public Archives of Canada. 
  3. ^ a b Morgan, HJ. The Canadian parliamentary companion, 1874. pp. 128–29. 
  4. ^ "Winchester Henry Biggar". Retrieved 25 March 2013. 
  5. ^ "Ald. Biggar Likely to Quit When Present Term Expires". Montreal Gazette. 26 July 1938. Retrieved 25 March 2013. 
  6. ^ Entry for Henry Percival Biggar in the Canadian Encyclopedia

External links[edit]