Gosford, Archibald Acheson, 2d earl of

Gosford, Archibald Acheson, 2d earl of gŏzˈfərd [key], 1776–1849, governor in chief of British North America (1835–37). He served in the British House of Commons and, after succeeding (1807) to his Irish peerage, was elected Irish representative peer in the House of Lords in 1811. While in Parliament, he urged a conciliatory policy toward Ireland. In 1835 he was appointed governor of British North America—excepting Newfoundland—and a royal commissioner to inquire into the state of affairs in Lower Canada. His policy of “conciliation without concession” toward Louis Joseph Papineau and other French Canadians alienated the English element without winning the French extremists. He resigned on Nov. 14, 1837, on the eve of the rebellion of 1837. On his return to England, he unsuccessfully opposed (1840) the Act of Union, which united Upper and Lower Canada.

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