Biography of Peter White, M.P.

Peter White, son of Peter White, senior, was born at Pembroke, county of Renfrew, on the 30th of August, 1838. His father was a native of Edinburgh, Scotland, born December 31, 17 94; at fourteen years of age went to sea, and during the war with the United States, in 1812-14, was on a British vessel, fighting on the American lakes, remaining connected with the service until the close of that contest, and then concluding to make his home in this country. He commenced lumbering on the Ottawa river, below where Pembroke now stands, and in 1828 moved to this place and became the founder of the town. He brought his family in a canoe from Bytown, now Ottawa city, a distance of 100 miles, the trip occupying fourteen days. It is now made in less than half as many hours. He was instrumental in getting the first minister and the first school teacher to Pembroke; was for many years a member of the town council, was long connected with the militia, and rose to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel of the North Renfrew division.

He married Miss Cecilia Thomson, of Napean, and had ten children, four of whom are yet living. He died on the 6th of August, 1878, greatly lamented. He may be called the father of Pembroke, which was originally named Miramichi, and his memory is fondly cherished by all who knew him.

The subject of this sketch, the fourth son of Peter White, senior, received such mental training as an ordinary country school could furnish, up to eleven years of age, he supplementing it, in subsequent years, by acting as his own teacher.

Born and reared in a lumber town, Mr. White early took to that business, and has always followed it. He is of the firm of A. and P. White, his partner being his older brother, Andrew T. White. They are both enterprising men, and during the last decade have averaged about $120,000 a year. They have also a farm of three hundred acres, which they own together, and Andrew T. White gives considerable attention to the breeding of short horn cattle.

Our subject was in the county council of Renfrew from 1870 to 1875; was an unsuccessful candidate for a seat in Parliament, for the riding of North Renfrew, in 1872, and in November 1873; sat for his present seat from the general election, in 1874, until the 14th of September that year, when he was unseated on petition; was returned once more on the 21st of January, 1876, on the sitting member being unseated, and again in September, 1878.

He is a Liberal Conservative, and a steady and firm supporter of the Macdonald Administration. In religion he is an adherent of the Free Presbyterian church.

The wife of Mr. White was Miss Janet Thompson, of Ottawa, they being united in marriage in Decerber, 1877, and have two children.

MLA Source Citation:

The Canadian Biographical Dictionary and Portrait Gallery of Eminent and Self Made Men, Ontario, Volume 1. Toronto: Toronto American Biographical Pub. Co. 1880. Web. 26 January 2015. - Last updated on Aug 7th, 2012


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