Beechwood Historical Profiles

Beechwood, established in 1873, is recognized as one of the most beautiful and historic cemeteries in Canada. It is the final resting place for over 85,000 Canadians from all walks of life, including important politicians such as Governor General Ramon Hnatyshyn and Prime Minister Sir Robert Borden, Canadian Forces Veterans, War Dead, RCMP members and everyday Canadian heroes: our families and our loved ones.

In late 1980s, Beechwood began producing a small booklet containing brief profiles for several dozen of the more significant and well-known individuals buried here. Since then, the cemetery has grown in national significance and importance, first by becoming the home of the National Military Cemetery of the Canadian Forces in 2001, being recognized as a National Historic Site in 2002 and finally by becoming the home of the RCMP National Memorial Cemetery in 2004. This culminated in 2009 with Beechwood’s designation as the National Cemetery of Canada by way of Bill C-17, an Act of Parliament that received all-party support in the House of Commons.

Beechwood now serves as a place of national tribute and remembrance for all Canadians. And as the cemetery grew, so too has this book. It now contains close to 350 profiles of men and women who, in a wide variety of ways, have made a mark on our history. They range over a broad spectrum of the Canadian scene, spanning the country from east to west, and include writers and artists, politicians and businessmen, explorers, inventors, and even a few non-Canadians who found their final resting place in our beautiful country. This book remains a work in progress, with individuals being added through research or as they join ‘the quiet dead’ at Beechwood, so dubbed by poet Archibald Lampman.

It is meant to be more than a profile gallery of celebrated Canadians; it offers the reader a journey of discovery into our past collective history. Beechwood welcomes suggestions or submissions of any individuals we may have missed.

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