Kingston and the surrounding area is rich in history and many of those "history makers" are interred at Cataraqui Cemetery. Since the early 1800's Kingston has been influential to the growth of the province and ultimately to the growth of Canada as a nation. Many of Kingston's early citizens and families became Interment Rights Holders at Cataraqui Cemetery. The most recognized person interred at Cataraqui Cemetery is Sir John A. Macdonald, Canada's first Prime Minister and a Father of Confederation. Sir Alexander Campbell, another Father of Confederation, can also be found with in our historic gates. As Sir John A.'s confidant and longtime friend, Campbell was instrumental in the formation of the Cemetery and became the first President of The Cataraqui Cemetery Board of Trustees. The Cataraqui is the only cemetery in Ontario to have the distinction of being the final resting place of two Fathers of Confederation, but the Cemetery's historical importance does not end here.
Cataraqui is the final resting place for many great humanitarians, entrepreneurs, giants of industry, authors, celebrities and history makers. We honour the memories of these individuals as well as all citizens and past family members. We take great pride in sharing the stories of their accomplishments and lives so that young and old may learn the timeless lesson of "you don't know where you are going until you learn where you came from".
A young student once noticed and commented that it is interesting to see that Cataraqui Cemetery holds the memories of some of Canada's most prominent individuals as well as some of its less fortunate and nearly forgotten. "From Prime minister to paupers" the student remarked. Cataraqui Cemetery encourages history and learning and believes that the many stories of those resting within the cemetery should inspire us to create a better world.
We are happy to share the Cemetery as a classroom for students of all ages. We offer guided cemetery walking or trolley tours. These tours are available by reservation. Donations are gratefully appreciated. If you are a member of a group that would like a tour please contact us for more information about our tours, special events. Currently we are seeking volunteers to help us prepare and lead a regular tour program.
We recognize that every person has a story. We would like to learn more about any of the 46,000+ individuals interred at Cataraqui Cemetery as well as their contributions to the history and makeup of our community. We invite you to share with us any stories and information.
Some Notable Individuals at Cataraqui Cemetery:
Note. We have provided links to other sources and websites sites regarding historical information of each individual where available. The Cataraqui Cemetery Company has not verified the authenticity of the information presented in each of these linked websites nor do we claim to be affiliated with any of the websites.
Sir John A. Macdonald, politician, lawyer, Canada's first Prime Minister and a Father of Confederation. He has been designated as a Person of National Historic Significance and his family plot is a National Historic Site of Canada.
Sir Alexander Campbell, politician, lawyer, a Father of Confederation and first President of The Cataraqui Cemetery. Friend to Sir John A. He too has been designated as a Person of National Historic Significance
Charles Sangster, author, poet, fellow of the Royal Society, editor, civil servant and journalist.
Micajah Purdy, early settler, mill owner and United Empire Loyalist.
Edward John Barker Pense, mayor, second publisher of the Kingston's British Whig (Whig Standard) newspaper.
Sir John Hamilton, businessman, politician and a founder of Queen's University.
James Morton Sr, industrialist, capitalist, brewer, ship owner, part owner of the Kingston Locomotive Works.
Capt. James Sutherland, WWI veteran, pioneer of amateur organized hockey and founder of the Memorial Cup.
Gunner James D. March, killed at Fort Henry, veteran of the Crimean War and Northwest Rebellion.
Harriet Dobbs Cartwright, artist, writer and humanitarian.
Sir Richard Cartwright, businessman and prominent politician. He has been designated as a Person of National Historic Significance
David Nicol, Cataraqui Cemetery Superintendent in the late 1800's, responsible for enhancing the gardens, landscape and Picturesque attributes of the rural style cemetery.
Thomas MacLeod, seaman, three time Antarctic polar explorer with famed explorers Scott and Shackleton.
Lt. Gen. Sir Archibald Cameron Macdonnell, WWI General, RMC Graduate and RMC Commandant.
Major W. Bruce Carruthers, Boer War veteran and founder of the Canadian Signaling Corps.
Dr. James Sampson, War of 1812 military surgeon, doctor and a founder of Kingston General Hospital.
Dr. Margaret Angus, author, historian and supporter of Kingston's architectural heritage.
Sir George Airey Kirkpatrick, politician rising to become Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario.
Air Commodore Leonard Birchall, "Saviour of Ceylon", RMC Commandant and philanthropist.
James Richardson, businessman and patriarch of the Richardson family and companies.
Agnes Etherington, art matriarch of Kingston and philanthropist.
Sir Henry Smith Jr., politician, Speaker of the House and Solicitor General.
Henry Gildersleeve, early lake Ontario master shipbuilder.
William Coverdale, prominent local architect and master builder of Kingston Penitentiary.
John Creighton, Warden of Kingston Penitentiary, Mayor of Kingston, police magistrate and book seller.
Agnes Maule Machar, naturalist, humanitarian, author, social reformer and a founder of the Kingston Humane Society.
Henry Cassady, lawyer, Mayor of Kingston and early mentor to Sir John A. Macdonald.
Thomas Burrowes, painter, artist, surveyor and overseer of the Rideau Canal construction.
John Counter, 8 time Mayor of Kingston and businessman, co-donated with Sir John A. Macdonald Kingston's City Hall Clock Tower.
Harry Traill, first Kingston prison guard killed in the line of duty, son of author Catherine Parr-Traill, nephew of authors Susanna Moodie and Agnes Strickland.