Family History: George Hamilton Gillespie, Hamilton, ON

George Hamilton Gillespie, merchant, b Aug 10 ,1827 Biggar Park, Lanarkshire, Scotland, married Elizabeth Agnes in 1856 and they had five sons and four daughters. He d Aug 24, 1900 at Hamilton, Ontario buried in Hamilton Cemetery.

George Gillespie received a classical and mathematical education in Scotland before emigrating to Toronto, Canada West with his elder brother in 1846. He secured a position as a law clerk but the following year moved to Montreal to join his uncle’s lrge wholesale importing house of Gillespie, Moffat and Company.

George came to Hamilton in 1851 and assumed the management of the wholesale dry-goods firm of  Gillespie, Denholm and Company. Five years later he joined Adam Brown to form the firm of Brown, Gillespie and Company, where he remained until he left the wholesale grocery business in 1868 for a career in brokerage and insurance. In 1859 he had become the director of the Hamilton Provident and Loan Society and was made president on the death of Adam Hop in 1882. He was a director of the Canadian Life Assurance Company, and later became vice-president. He also served for many years as resident director of the Dundas Cotton Mills and was instrumental in purchasing Canadian municipal securities for local firms.

In politics Gillespie was an ardent Liberal-Conservative. He was a member of St Andrew’s Benevolent Society, and thus was probably Presbyterian in faith.   In 1864 at the time of the Trent Affair, he joined the 13th Battalion of Volunteer Militia as a lieutenant.

Gillespie resided at ‘Bleak House’ on the Mountain. He died in 1900 leaving an estate estimated at $80,000.


Source of Record: Book : Dictionary of Hamilton Biography, Volume 1

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