Re: Norfolk pioneer Robert Nichol
Last updated: 15 May 2009
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Celebrating Colonel Robert Nichol
Cheryl MacDonald

A historical plaque will be unveiled in September 2009, dedicated to Robert Nichol. This article originally promoted a fundraiser to that end. Click on illustration at right for fundraiser information.

Robert Nichol was an extremely important individual in early Ontario history -- a merchant, miller and businessman. He was probably the wealthiest man in Norfolk County in 1812. He commanded the 2nd regiment of the Norfolk Militia at a time when men from Haldimand County served with the Norfolks. 

As Quartermaster-General of Militia for Upper Canada during the war, he was responsible for supplying the troops with shelter, food, transportation and other equipment. But he did a lot more than that.

He served as MLA for Norfolk from 1812 until his tragic and mysterious death in 1824. Norfolk Street in Simcoe was once named Nichol Street in his honor. One of the early settlements in the Simcoe area was named Theresaville, after his wife.

The War of 1812 Bicentennial is coming up in 2012, which means there is going to be a lot of interest in various people involved in the war. The plaque is one way of bringing attention to one of the most influential characters of the time -- one who happened to have strong connections to this area.

If you'd like to learn more about Nichol, visit my website or check out this Dictionary of Canadian Biography article. 

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Copyright 2009 Cheryl MacDonald and John Cardiff