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George Alexander Shaw


Lieutenant-Colonel, Toronto, was born at Kingston, Canada, on June 24th, 1844. This gentleman is a direct lineal descendant of the MacDuff who was created first Earl or Thane of Fifem for services rendered to Malcolm Canmore, King of Scotland, in 1067. In 1163 Shaw, the third son of the fifth Earl of Fife, for galant conduct in battle, was appointed governor of the castle at Inverness. This appointment remained in the Shaw family for several generations and it is here that the name Macintosh originated, thus, Mac-an-Toiseach, meaning son of the foremost or chief man. Angus, the sixth chief of the Macintoshs, was present at the battle of Bannockburn in 1314. The family is essentially a military one, and sprung of the royal blood of Scotland. The first connection of the family with this country was when Mr. Shaw's great grandfather, Major-General AEneas Shaw, a U. E. loyalist, served during the first American rebellion. Major Shaw occupied the first house built in York in 1793, and it was destroyed during the American invasion of 1813. For his services he received a free grant of large tracts of land in various parts of the Province of Canada, among them being 500 acres north of the garrison at York. On this he built a log house in 1795, calling it "Oak Hill" (i.e., Tordarroch), and in this house he had the honour of entertaining the Duke of Kent, Her Majesty's father. he died of fatigue during the war of 1813. Our subject's grandfather, Captain Alexcander Shaw, of the 69th, formerly the 35th, fought in seven general engagements in Europe, and was at the taking of Alexandria, in 1813. Thus it will be seen that Captain Alexander Shaw's father was fighting in Canada while the son was engaged in the east doing battle under the same flag. Captain Shaw was one of the only five officers of the regiment who came out of the Alexandrian affair alive. Our subject's father was George Shaw, who was a lieutenant in the Queen's Rangers, and served during 1837-38. The mother of Mr. Shaw was Ellen Hewson, of Dublin, and belonged to an old Irish family. Lieut.-Colonel Shaw was educated at Upper Canada College and Trinity College school, and afterwards at the University of Trinity College, and at these places acquired an ordinary classical education. He has had military tastes from youth, but owing to circumstances he did not become a regular. He entered the civil service as railway mail clerk in 1867, and continued so, advancing in position, till 1882, when he commenced a mining and lumbering business. He, however, still holds a position in the civil service. He has large interests in Colorado Silver Mountain mining districts, as well as elsewhere. He went through the Military School in 1865, taking second, and afterwards first-class, certificates, and he served with the 10th Royals during the Fenian raids, being in command of H Company. He was selected as one of the captains during the Louis Riel troubles, and was lieutenant in the 4th Sedentary Militia. He became in May, 1871, adjutant in the 10th Royals, and held this rank for six years; then he was promoted junior major, then senior major, then commanding officer (lieut.-colonel), with which rank he retired in October, 1880. He is an Orangeman; a member of St. Andrew's Society; and also belongs to the Sons of Scotland and the Caledonian Society. He also belongs to the Board of Trade, and the Workingmen's National Co-operative Union, and is vice-Consul for Hawaii. Lieut.-Colonel Shaw has travelled through the United States and Canada. In religion he belongs to the Church of England; and in politics he is a Liberal-Conservative. He married on August 30th, 1882, Marion Christina Bastedo, daughter of the Gilbert Bastedo, crown attorney for the County of Halton. It may not be uninteresting to state that the arms of the Shaws of Tordarrach are: Quartewrly - first and fourth - or, a lion rampant gules, armed and lanquid azure; second and third, Argent, a fir tree growing out of a mount in base, all proper; on a chief gules charged with an augmentation of royal standard of Scotland, a conton of the field, theron a dexter hand couped lesswise, proper, holding a dagger point downwards.


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