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[Bookplate for John A. Macdonald]
[Bookplate for John A. Macdonald]
Title[Bookplate for John A. Macdonald]
Date Created[between 1800 and 1899]
Sort Date1899
DescriptionBlack ink on cream paper. Above the escutcheon sits a dexter hand, erased, holding a cross crosslet, gules (red), on a vizored helm with mantling. Escutcheon is divided per quarter. The quarterly field near dexter chief is argent (silver) with a lion rampant, gules, and near sinister chief, or (gold), is a dexter hand, erased, holding cross crosslet, gules. The quarterly field near the sinister base displays a fish naiant on water, vert (green), and near the dexter base, argent, is a lymphad in sable (black), azure (blue), and gules.
Extent1 bookplate : steel engraving ; 6.4 x 9.5 cm
Subject - GeographicCanada
Personal NamesMacdonald, John A.
TypeStill Image
NotesJohn A. Macdonald (1815-1891) was the first Prime Minister of Canada. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, he arrived in Canada 1820. At the age of 15, Macdonald began his law career clerking in the office of George Mackenzie and went on to open his own firm in 1835 where he developed a reputation as a brash attorney who tackled scandalous and difficult cases. He entered politics in 1843 when elected to the position of alderman in Kingston, ON. In 1843, he married Isabella Clark ; before her death in 1857, she bore two sons, John Alexander (who died at the age of 13 months) and Hugh John (1850-1929). In 1854, Macdonald became the attorney general for Upper Canada and in 1856 became leader of the Upper Canada government. Macdonald took a personal yet pragmatic approach to governing, and was a popular politician. Macdonald married Susan Agnes Bernard in 1867 and in 1869 they had a daughter Margaret Mary Theodora, who was born with severe development and physical disabilities. Macdonald was the major figure in the push for Canadian confederation and in 1867, he became Prime Minister of the newly united Dominion of Canada. His years as a leader in Canadian politics were marked by the Louis Riel Rebellion, the creation of the North-West Mounted Police, and the foundation of the Canadian Pacific Railway, as well as his frequent bouts of heavy drinking and illness. In his final years, Macdonald continued to work tirelessly for the nation. He died as the result of a stroke in May of 1891. The Murray collection also includes a nearly identical bookplate belonging to Macdonald's son Hugh John Macdonald.
1) Dictionary of Canadian Bibliography. 2000. Date accessed: October 19, 2009 from:
2) Heraldic Dictionary. University of Notre Dame, Dept. of Special Collections. Accessed 18 Nov. 2008 from
Access IdentifierBP MUR CAN P M333
Digital IdentifierBP_MUR_CAN_P_M333
Is Part OfRBSC Bookplates
SourceOriginal Format: University of British Columbia. Library. Rare Books and Special Collections. Thomas Murray Bookplates Collection. Leslie Binder. BP MUR CAN P M333
Date Available2010
Publisher - DigitalVancouver : University of British Columbia Library
RightsImages provided for research and reference use only. Permission to publish, copy, or otherwise use these images must be obtained from Rare Books and Special Collections:
TranscriptPER MARE PER TERRAS. John A. Macdonald
Translationby sea, by land
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