EARL OF, British statesman: b. London, 12 April 1792; d. Cowes, Isle of Wight, 28 July 1840. He was educated at Eton, and waS returned to the House of Commons as Liberal member for Durham in 1813. An ardent reformer, he was known as °Radical Jack' favored in 1819 shorter Parliaments, was a supporter of Queen Caroline, and refused to accept a qualified Catholic emancipation. In 1828 he was created Baron Durham, and in 1833 Viscount Lambton and Earl of Durham. He held the office of Lord Privy Seal in the Cabinet of Lord Grey (1830), his father-in-law, and took a leading part in framing the Reform Bill of 1832 and urged the creation of peers as a coercive meas ure in the event of the House of Lords proving recalcitrant. In 1832 he was Ambassador Ex traordinary to the courts of Vienna, Berlin and Saint Petersburg and Ambassador Extraordi nary and Plenipotentiary at Saint Petersburg, 1835-37.
Durham was appointed on 30 March 1838 governor-in-chief of all the Canadian provinces and high commissioner in Lower and Upper Canada, and this post he held till 1 November in that year. The situation he had to meet on his arrival on 27 May was grave and menacing The rebellions had been crushed, but in both provinces there was intense irritation against the authorities, and there was threatened trouble on the international border, which was abetted by the state governments. Durham succeeded in securing the co-operation of the Washington government in maintaining peace. He passed an ordinance on 28 June banishing to Bermuda certain of the prisoners taken in the Lower Canada Rebellion of 1837; but this measure was assailed in the British Parliament as beyond the powers of Durham's commission; the Prime Minister, Lord Melbourne, offered only a half hearted defense, and in the end the ordinance was disallowed. Durham felt he had been be
trayed by the ministers who had appointed him, and at once resigned, issuing at the same time a proclamation vindicating his conduct. On his return he busied himself with the preparation of his 'Report on the Affairs of British North America,' perhaps the most important state paper ever issued on the principles of colonial government. For the evils that existed in the Canadas he proposed the introduction of re sponsible government by the creation of an executive dependent on the majority in the elec tive assembly, the union of the Canadas, munic ipal government, state-aided immigration, the repeal of the laws on the clergy reserves and formation of an inter-colonial railway. Dur ham's policy in the extension of colonial self government came to fruition under the adminis tration of his son-in-law, Lord Elgin, and has since been applied to all the British overseas dominions. In 1839 Durham became chairman of the New Zealand Colonization Company and thus had a part in the early settlement of that British colony. Consult the 'Life and Letters of Lord Durham,' edited by Reid.