no image

William James Thomson (1863 - 1922)

Privacy Level: Open (White)
William James Thomson
Born in Scarborough Township, Canada Westmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in Toronto, Ontario, Canadamap
Profile manager: Fred Nix private message [send private message]
Profile last modified | Created 7 Jun 2013
This page has been accessed 323 times.



William James is born in September 1863 in Scarborough Township, Canada West, the son of James George Thomson (1839-1917) and Agnes Glendinning (1840-1916). He is baptised in St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Bendale, Scarborough in October 1863.

On his father’s side, William is descended from two of the earliest Scotch families to settle in Scarborough – the Thomson’s who were the first European settlers in Scarborough in 1799 and the Paterson’s who settled in 1820 along what is now the east side of Kennedy Road between Finch and Sheppard Avenues. His Thomson ancestor was actually the brother of the first European settlers. On his mother’s side, the Glendinning’s also were among the first settlers in Scarborough and are so inter-married with both the Thomson family and the Paterson family that it is sometimes difficult to keep relationships straight.

William is in the 1871 census, as a young boy, living with his parents and five siblings on the family farm. The farm, Springfield Farm, is located in Lot 23, Concession 1 of Scarborough Township. The West Highland Creek runs through the middle of the farm. In today’s geography, this is on the north side of Lawrence Avenue, west of McCowan Road in Toronto. The original farm which would be at 142 St. Andrew’s Road., now sits beside the Thomson Memorial Park. St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Bendale, was built on the northern part of the farm.

William is still with the family at age 17 in the 1881 census. In 1890 William moves to the United States – as far as is known to New York city. While his reasons for moving to New York are not known, it appears that he is involved in some sort of business with wholesale, dry goods (this is on the wedding notice in 1896). He has not been found in either the 1890 US census records or the 1891 Canadian census records.

On August 25, 1896 William James marries Louisa M. CLOSSON (1861-1933) in Toronto. Louisa was born on May 16, 1861 in Pickering, Ontario, the daughter of Dr. Lorenzo Dore Closson (c1829-1896) and Mary Ann (c1835>1901). Pickering is a township just to the east of Scarborough. The wedding notice shows her as from Pickering and Toronto. In fact she spent most of her years growing up in Scarborough Township (perhaps this is how she met William?).

In the 1871 census, Louisa is nine years old, living with her parents, three younger siblings and an uncle in Scarborough. Her father, Lorenzo, and her uncle, Jas, were both born in the United States, most likely Chautauqua County, New York. Her father is a physician and her uncle is a farmer. Lorenzo and Jas had moved from New York State to the Highland Creek area of Scarborough with their family possibly in the late 1830s. Their father had moved back and forth between New York and Upper Canada several times and their mother was from Upper Canada. It is likely that Lorenzo went back to the United States – Pennsylvania – for his education as a doctor. Presumably, when he finished school (?early 1850s) he came back to Canada where he then met Mary Ann and married her. Mary Ann, born in Upper Canada, has an Irish ancestory. Louisa is 19-years old and still living with her family in Scarborough in the 1881 census. She is listed as a student in the census record – to still be in school at age 19 suggests that Louisa went on to some form of higher education. In the 1891 census record, Lousia (“Louise”) is still at home with her family – they now live in the west end of Toronto. Louisa, whose age is shown as 25 (she is more like 29), is shown to be a “med student.” So it appears that she was following her father’s footsteps (although there is no evidence that she ever became a doctor).

Louisa’s father, Lorenzo, dies at age 67 in the same year that William and Louisa were married.

William and Louisa move back to New York City sometime after the wedding. They are found there in the US 1910 census with an eight-year old child. They have not been found in any later census records (American or Canadian) but they might have moved back to Canada at some point as William dies in Toronto on December 6, 1922. He is buried on December 8, 1922 in Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Toronto. Louisa dies in 1933 and is buried with William.

William and Louisa had one child:

  • Closson Goldwin Thomson (1902-1989) + (1920) Anna Doris Marshall (1902-?)

User ID

ID: 5FB661AF1314F245A70A2741E94E7D3B8BDC

Data Changed

29 Dec 2004

Prior to import, this record was last changed 00:00:00 29 Dec 2004.



[1] 1968 Paterson family tree shows William as the 2nd child of James & Agnes; it shows his spouse, Louisa Closson; it shows one child, Closson; and it shows one grandchild, Gwendoline.

[2] St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Bendale, Baptism Registery: William James born Sept 1863, baptised Oct 1863.

[3] 1871 census, Ontario, 45 East York, Scarborough, pg 48-49, household 180: James G. Thomson (31), farmer; Agnes (31); Eliza Jane (9); William (?) James (7); Andrew H. (5); Oliver (3); Agnes Ida (1). All members of the household were born in Ontario; their religion is “Presbyter” [Presbyterian], and they are “Scotch.” Eliza Jane is in school. The next household (#179) is James A. Thomson (69) & Agnes (70). These are the parents of James George Thomson.

[4] 1871 census, Ontario, 45 East York, Scarborough, pg 22, household 77: Lorenzo D. Closson (41), phisician (sic, presumably “physician”); Mary Ann (35); Jas (45), farmer; Louisa M (9); John Hyland (6); Lorenzo B (2); Fred W (4 months). The 2 elder Closson’s – Lorenzo & Jas – were born in the United States; everyone else was born in Ontario. The religion is Church of England. Everyone’s origin is English except Mary Ann who is Irish.

[5] 1881 census, Ontario, 135 East York, Scarborough, pg 1, household 3: James G. Thomson (41), farmer ; Agnes (40); Eliza Jane (19); William James (17); Andrew H. (15); Oliver (13); Agnes Ida (11). All family members were born in Ontario, their religion is shown as “Can Presb” [Canadian Presbyterian]; and their origin is shown as Scotland. The 3 youngest children are in school.

[6] 1881 census, Ontario, 135 East York, Scarborough, pg 18-19, household 91: Lorenzo Closson (51), born in USA, physician; Mary ! (45); Louisa M (19), student; John H (16); Annie F (4); (?) Miram (1). The record appears to show Lorenzo’s religion as “Quaker”’ the rest of the household are C. Meth [Canadian Methodists]. Everyone is labelled English except Mary who is Irish.

[7] 1891 census, Ontario, 119 Toronto West, St Patricks Ward, pg 69, household 344: Lawrence (sic) D. Closson (61), born in US, parents born in US, M.D.; Mary (54), born in Ont, parents born in Ireland; Louise (25) med student; John (23); Annie (14); Noland (12). The religion of the family is shown as Meth [Methodist]

[8] 1896 “ #015367-96 (Toronto) William J. THOMSON, 32, Scarboro, New York, b, wholesale Dry Goods, s/o James G. & Agnes THOMSON, married Louise M. CLOSSON, 27, Pickering, Toronto, s, d/o Lorenzo D. & Mary A. CLOSSON, witn: Andrew H. THOMSON of Montreal, Allis HAWDON of Whitby, married 25 August 1896”

[9] Closson ancestory: (1) genealogy databases include: “Lorenzo Dore Closson Died at age 67 in 1896 in York, Ontario”. (2) has something entitled “U.S., School Catalogs, 1765-1935. School Lists & Yearbooks “ which shows a Lorenzo D. Closson in school in Pennsylvania (year not known) (3) the 1910 US census record for William J. Thomson & Louisa M. Closson shows the the father of Louisa was born in New York. (4) a 2004 post by a Fraser Closson -- -- indicates that the father of Lorenzo D. Closson, John Closson (1776-?), moved from New York State to Upper Canada in 1805 where he married Pauline Palmer. They lived in Highland Creek (ie, Scarborough). In 1813 they moved back to New York State, Chautauqua County, where most of the children were born. The family moved back to Highland Creek sometime after 1830-1836.

[10] United States Census, 1910, index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 09 Oct 2014), William J Thomson, Manhattan Ward 12, New York, New York, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 529, sheet 6B, family 108, NARA microfilm publication T624, FHL microfilm 1375034. The census record shows William J. Thomson (46), born in Canada in 1864, married to Louise M Thomson (48), also born in Canada. They have one child, Closson G. Thomson (8), who was born in New York. The year of immigration for the parents is shown as 1890.. The census record also shows Louise’s father as born in New York.

[11] Ian Glendinning’s web site -- . . – for information on the death of William & Louisa and the place of burial. Also this is the source for the date/location of the birth of Louisa.




Thank you to Katharine E for creating WikiTree profile Thomson-2056 through the import of andrew thomson.ged on Jun 7, 2013. Click to the Changes page for the details of edits by Katharine and others.

More Genealogy Tools

Sponsored Search

Sponsored Search by

DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with William by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with William:

Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.


William is 23 degrees from Virginia Fields, 22 degrees from William Mayo and 18 degrees from Henry VIII of England on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

T  >  Thomson  >  William James Thomson