BC Premier#4 – Andrew Charles Elliot. Yawn.
Andrew Charles Elliot, the fourth Premier of the Province of British Columbia, rivals the Right Honourable Captain Boring in terms of sheer boringness.
|Name||Andrew Charles Elliott|
|Born:||c. 1828 somewhere in Ireland|
|Died:||April 9, 1889 in San Francisco|
|Party:||Like a rock star|
|Held Office:||February 1, 1876 – February 11, 1878|
- apparently they don’t actually know when he was born, nor can they narrow down the location to more than just “Ireland.” Nice record keeping, 1820s Ireland!
- he came to BC to be a lawyer in the “gold colony” and somehow was called to the bar, even though there was no county court system. So he figured he’d leave. Then they made a court system. And then he stayed.
- He became a county judge, then a “gold commissioner and stipendiary magistrate,” then he was appointed to the Legislative Council by Governor Frederick Seymour. After BC joined Confederation, he became the high sheriff, then the police magistrate of Victoria. He had a lot of jobs.
- In 1875 he was elected to the Legislative Assembly and later would become the Leader of the Opposition (again, remembering that there aren’t any political parties at this point). When G.A.W. got kicked out by a non-confidence vote, Lieutenant Governor Joseph William Trutch asked A.C.E. to form a government.
- He had a reputation for being boring “honesty and gentlemanly behaviour. “Nearly twenty years in office and not rich!” exclaimed David William Higgins, the editor of the” Daily British Colonist and Victoria Chronicle4.
- Faced with the clusterfuck of a financial situation that G.A.W. had left behind1 he raised taxes. All sorts of taxes. Real estate taxes. Income taxes. School taxes. Wild land taxes.
- Like G.A.W. before him, A.C.E. had to deal with the whole railroad thing. The feds had offered a railroad from Esquimalt to Nanaimo if the province agree to let them have more time to complete the transcontinential railroad. But there were more delays and suchlike, and then the feds said, “Um, yeah, that whole thing about the railroad ending in Esquimalt… yeah, not so much.”
- His government was defeated in 1878 and so he resigned. Then he tried really hard to get a pension from the federal government on the basis that he was a former colonial official. Again, the feds said, “Yeah, not so much.” While in London trying to get support for the pension claim, his wife died unexpectedly back in Victoria in 1881.
- He lived in San Fran for his last few years, on the advice of doctors who felt the northern climate was too cold for his poor health.
Image credits: Accessed from Wikipedia. In the public domain. Hoorah!
1It was so bad that the Bank of BC had cut off their government’s credit. How bad does a government had to be for the bank of their province to cut off their credit?
2Apparently these docs haven’t actually been to San Fran ‘cuz, really, it’s pretty frickin’ cold there, imho.