WILLIAM DOUGLAS (deceased), who for 33 years
was County Crown Attorney of the County of Kent, at Chatham, and one of
the leading men of that locality, was a native of Caithness, Scotland,
born September 1st, 1838, son of George and Jeannette (Gunn)
Douglas, both natives of Scotland; grandson of Donald and Isabel (Douglas)
Douglas; and great-grandson of George and Marian (Johnston) Douglas – all
of whom were born in Scotland. The great-grandfather was born about 1700;
his son, Donald, about 1736, and the wife of the latter in 1744. The
children of Donald and Isabel Douglas were: Alexander, George, William,
John and Elizabeth.
George Douglas, father of William, was born in
1772, and his wife in 1778, and their marriage occurred in 1811. They
came to Ontario in 1851, locating in the County of Northumberland, where
the father died in 1865, and his wife in 1855. They were the parents of
the following children: Donald, born in 1813, died in 1890; John, born in
1814, died in 1891; George, born in 1816, died in 1886; Alexander, born in
1821, resides in County Northumberland; William is mentioned below.
William Douglas was educated in the Toronto
University, from which institution he graduated in 1861, with the degree
of LL.B. In September of the same year, he passed the examination for
barrister and solicitor, and then located at Chatham, where he entered
into the practice of his chosen profession. In 1866 Messrs. Douglas and
O’Hara formed a law partnership which continued until Mr. O’Hara’s
appointment as Master of Chancery, in 1869. The year previous Mr. Douglas
had been appointed County Crown Attorney, which honourable office he
filled with distinction until his death March 28, 1902, discharging the
duties pertaining thereto in a manner which reflected credit alike upon
his ability and his county. In 1885 Mr. Douglas was further distinguished
by appointment as Queen’s Counsel, and elected Bencher of the law society.
In 1863 Mr. Douglas was united in marriage
with Miss Jane Emily Hudson, of Toronto, born in 1840, daughter of Capt.
R.H. Hudson, and to this union nine children were born: George H.,
deceased, of Toronto; William, educated in Toronto, who is now a leading
physician of Tacoma, Washington; Julia; John; Lila; Donald; Mary; Isabel;
and Jeane, who received the degree of B.A. from the University of
Toronto. Mr. Douglas was one of the oldest members of the Bar of Chatham,
and for a third of a century was an able and highly esteemed public
official, as well as a distinguished member of the legal profession.