Thomas Ridout

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Thomas Ridout
Thomas Ridout.png
Thomas Ridout
Chairman of the Home District Council
In office
1811–1829
Preceded by William Jarvis
Succeeded by William Allan
Constituency East York and Simcoe
Personal details
Born (1754-03-17)March 17, 1754
Sherborne, England
Died February 8, 1829(1829-02-08) (aged 74)
York, Upper Canada
Spouse(s) Isabella Ridout
Children Samuel Smith Ridout, George Ridout, John Ridout, and Thomas Gibbs Ridout
Occupation Politician

Thomas Ridout (March 17, 1754 – February 8, 1829) was a political figure in Upper Canada.

He was born in Sherborne, England in 1754 and came to Maryland in 1774. In 1787, he was travelling to Kentucky when his group was captured by a party of Shawnees; he was held captive and later released in Detroit, then held by the British. He married the daughter of a loyalist and settled with his family at Newark (Niagara-on-the-Lake).[1]

Ridout started work in 1793 as clerk for the surveyor general; in 1810, he was appointed to the post of surveyor general for Upper Canada.It was in that position that he came to know Elijah Bentley. He had also been named registrar for York County in 1796 and justice of the peace in the Home District in 1806 and Chairman of the Home District Council from 1811 to 1829. In 1812, he was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Upper Canada representing East York and Simcoe. He served on the board set up to deal with claims for compensation for losses sustained during the War of 1812. In 1825, he was named to the Legislative Council. In 1827, he was appointed to the first board of King's College.[1]

He died in York (Toronto) in 1829.[1]

His sons, Samuel Smith Ridout, George Ridout, John Ridout and Thomas Gibbs Ridout, were also prominent members of Upper Canada society.[1] His granddaughter, Matilda Ridout Edgar, was a historian and feminist.[2] In 1890 she published Ten years of Upper Canada in peace and war, 1805–1815, an edited collection of letters between Ridout and his sons George and Thomas Gibbs. This is a valuable source of information about life in Toronto and about the battles of the War of 1812.[3][2]

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