Christopher Robinson (politician)

Christopher Robinson (politician)

Christopher Robinson (1763 – November 2, 1798) was an American-born soldier, lawyer and political figure in Upper Canada.

Early life

He was born in Virginia in 1763, the son of John Robinson, Speaker of the House of Burgesses and sometime President of the Council of Virginia, and his wife Catherine, daughter of Major Robert Beverley of Yorkshire, England. It was his grandfather, Christopher Robinson (1645–1690), brother of John Robinson (1650–1723), who came to Virginia as secretary to Sir William Berkeley, Governor of the Colony.

Robinson was educated at the College of William and Mary. In 1781, he became an ensign in the Queen's Rangers under John Graves Simcoe and served until the surrender of Yorktown.


He retired at half pay in New Brunswick, but moved to Quebec in search of employment. In 1792, Simcoe, now Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada, offered him the post of surveyor general and he moved to Kingston.

In 1794, he received his license to practice law and, in 1796, he was elected to the 2nd Parliament of Upper Canada representing Ontario & Addington. In 1797, he played a role in establishing the Law Society of Upper Canada.

He died suddenly at York (Toronto) in 1798. William Fairfield took his place in the legislative assembly in June 1799.

He was the brother of Colonel Beverley Robinson, whose son was Sir Frederick Philipse Robinson. Christopher Robinson's sons included:

  • John Beverley, a lawyer, judge and political figure in Upper Canada
  • Peter, who played an important role in promoting immigration from Ireland to Upper Canada
  • William Benjamin, a political figure in Upper Canada and Canada West


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