Benjamin Holmes (Quebec)

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Benjamin Holmes (April 23, 1794 – May 23, 1865) was a Quebec businessman and political figure.

He was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1794 and came to Lower Canada with his family in 1801, after having been captured by a French frigate in 1797 when they first left for North America. He began work as a clerk with a group of Montreal merchants but joined the Canadian Light Dragoons during the War of 1812, becoming lieutenant in 1813. He was taken prisoner later that year and released the following year. In 1817, he began work with the Bank of Montreal, becoming cashier (manager) by 1827. He served as lieutenant-colonel in the local militia during the Lower Canada Rebellion. In 1841, he was elected to the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Canada for the city of Montreal. He was also elected to the city council in 1842. He retired from the assembly in 1844 and returned to work at the bank until 1846. In 1848, he was elected again in the city of Montreal. Holmes was a supporter of the annexation movement, signing the Montreal Annexation Manifesto. He was elected to city council again in 1850. He was a vice-president of the St Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad and became vice-president of the Grand Trunk Railway when the two were amalgamated in 1853. In the same year, he became a director of the Bank of Montreal. Holmes was named receiver of customs at Montreal in 1863 and died there in 1865.

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