Henry Sherwood

Henry Sherwood (1807 - 1855)

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Henry Sherwood
Born in Augusta Township, Upper Canadamap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married 22 Jul 1829 [location unknown]
Died in Bavaria, Germanymap
Profile last modified 4 May 2019 | Created 25 Jul 2014
This page has been accessed 578 times.
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Preceded by
William Draper
6th Premier of Province of Canada
28 May 1847 - 11 March 1848
Succeeded by
Sir Louis-Hippolyte Lafontaine
Preceded by
William Draper
5th Premier of Canada West
28 May 1847 - 11 March 1848
Succeeded by
Robert Baldwin
Preceded by
George Monro
7th Mayor of Toronto
1842 - 1845
Succeeded by
William H. Boulton


Henry Sherwood is/was a significant Ontarian .

Henry Sherwood was an office holder, militia officer, lawyer, businessman, politician, and judge. He married 22 July 1829 Mary Graham Smith, daughter of Peter Smith[1] of Kingston, Upper Canada, and they had 18 children.

Henry Sherwood was of loyalist descent through both parents; Henry’s father and his uncle Jonas Jones, in particular, had close connections with the controlling élite at York (Toronto).

After articling at York in the law office of his uncle, Solicitor General Henry John Boulton, Sherwood was admitted to the bar of Upper Canada in 1828. While still a law student, he had received appointment as clerk of assize on the western circuit, where his father, on occasion, presided, and in 1830 he was gazetted one of the three commissioners of customs for the Johnstown District.

His opinions were tory. He took part in the infamous type riot of 8 June 1826 when the presses of the Colonial Advocate and other printing equipment of the radical York newspaperman William Lyon Mackenzie were destroyed by a mob.

When Mackenzie and his supporters rose in revolt early in December 1837, Sherwood, who had been commissioned lieutenant in the West York militia in 1827, was at once appointed as one of the provincial aides-de-camp to Lieutenant Governor Sir Francis Bond Head together with Jonas Jones, James McGill Strachan, and John Beverley Robinson. On 7 December he marched in the force that attacked and dispersed the rebels at Gallows Hill just north of Toronto. Sherwood was appointed Queen’s Counsel on 23 Jan. 1838 and in that capacity was employed in numerous trials arising from the rebellion and from the subsequent Patriot incursions into Upper Canada; he also acted as judge advocate in the court martial of 44 prisoners including Joshua Gwillen Doan at London from 27 Dec. 1838 to 19 Jan. 1839.

In January 1842 he was elected alderman for St David’s Ward and at the ensuing meeting of the city council he was chosen mayor of Toronto, defeating Captain John Simcoe Macaulay. Sherwood was to remain mayor for three terms (1842–44) and an alderman until 1849. He promoted the rapid extension of sidewalks, sewerage drains, schools, and other services, kept taxes as low as possible, and adopted a vigorous, hard-headed approach to raising the loans necessary to fund the resulting deficits.

On 29 May 1847 he acceded to the attorney generalship west and the leadership of the government. However, in the 1848 election, Sherwood himself was returned for Toronto but his government was trounced in both sections of the province.

At the general election of 1851, over-confidence, division of the tory vote, and, in the last hours of polling, a sudden rush by reformers to support one of his conservative opponents, George Percival Ridout, deprived him unexpectedly of his seat. Although he regained it late in April 1853, he was to serve only a further 15 months, during which parliament sat little. Moreover, his health was poor. He ran a weak campaign for re-election in July 1854 and was again defeated, a harsh blow to his spirits. To restore both health and humour, he undertook a European tour but died in Bavaria on 7 July 1855.


  1. Margaret Angus, “SMITH, PETER,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 6, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed April 2, 2017.

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Henry Sherwood
Henry Sherwood


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On 20 Aug 2017 at 00:28 GMT Phyllis (Byman) Spivey wrote:

Henry William Sherwood was born in 1838. Enjoyed the input.

On 24 Nov 2016 at 23:48 GMT Linda Kendrick wrote:

My 17th cousin 6xremoved. First common ancestor is my 22 great grandfather:


Henry is 20 degrees from Tanya Lowry, 12 degrees from Charles Tiffany and 13 degrees from Henry VIII of England on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.