George Munro (philanthropist)

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George Munro
Born (1825-11-12)November 12, 1825
West River, Nova Scotia
Died April 23, 1896(1896-04-23) (aged 70)
Education Pictou Academy
Occupation Educator
Publisher
Known for Rescuing Dalhousie University

George Munro (12 November 1825 – 23 April 1896) was a Canadian educator and philanthropist from Nova Scotia. He was born in West River, Pictou County, Nova Scotia. After basic schooling he became an apprentice at the age of 12 with a local newspaper known as The Observer. After two years he continued his education attending the New Glasgow School (1839 - 1842). After this he taught for a year to raise enough money to attend Pictou Academy.

Around 1850, Munro moved to Halifax and taught natural philosophy and mathematics at the Free Church Academy. He eventually became the school's principal before leaving for New York City in 1856. Five years later in 1861, he joined the publishing firm Irwin P. Beadle and Company. In 1863 the firm broke up and Munro entered in a partnership with Beadle and ended up owning the company a year later.

Munro became rich from his publishing company and in 1879 began donating to Dalhousie University under the influence of his brother-in-law, a member of the university's Board of Governors. At the time Dalhousie's total income was only $6,600, and the university was in danger of shutting down. In all Munro gave approximately $333,000 to the university (about $8 million in today's funds) which included endowed professorships and bursaries.

To commemorate his generosity, a university holiday, Munro Day, is celebrated each year on the first Friday of February.

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