Biography of Thomas Kirkpatrick, Q.C.
Among the early settlers in what is now the Province of Ontario, few men in a semi public capacity have filled a more honorable place that the subject of this brief sketch. Upper Canada was still a country in its infancy, when, as a youth of 17 years, in 1822, Thomas Kirkpatrick made his home in Kingston.
He was born in the parish of Castleknock, in the county of Dublin, and was led to think of Canada as a field in which to seek his fortune, by the fact that a connection of his own was already there in the service of the King. On his arrival, he entered upon the study of law under Christopher Hagerman, Esq. Kingston was at that time the chief town of Upper Canada, though not the seat of Government. On the appointment of Mr. Hagerman to a provincial judgeship, Mr. Kirkpatrick naturally succeeded him in his professional position, and quickly won, by a faithful discharge of his duties and by strict integrity, that place in the community which he retained until his death.
Various municipal and provincial offices, from time to time, were conferred upon him by his fellow townsmen and by the Government of the day. He did not, however, take any place in the public councils of his country, until the erection of the Dominion of Canada in
1867, when he was elected member for the county of Frontenac in the first Parliament. Here he faithfully fulfilled his duties, but only lived for three years after his entrance upon political life, dying in his 65th year, in March, 1870. His name will be long remembered in Kingston as that of an upright man. A country can have but few leaders; quite as necessary for its welfare are the class of influential private citizens, of whom Thomas Kirkpatrick was admittedly one of the most worthy.