Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




A. F. Burghardt




This thesis describes the major policies that contributed to the creation of the settlement at Niagara on-the-Lake, Ontario. These policies, that involved the blending of political, historical and geographical ingredients, were in general executed during the administration of Sir Frederick Haldimand within the framework of British colonial policy. The settlement that resulted was a unique expression of the response of an eighteenth century policy-maker to two major factors: the American War of Independence and the continuance of a British fur trade monopoly in North America.

Research aimed at isolating the principal locational policies that led to the development of the settlement; firstly as a means of understanding the choice of locational site, and secondly, as an example of the degree of influence that one administrator can have on past and present locational patterns.

The thesis has focused on the significant contribution made by Frederick Haldimand to the political and historical geography of Canada; a contribution that has been largely overlooked in historical and geographical literature. It has also shown that the historical, political and geographical administrative framework can contribute to an understanding of present day patterns of settlement, and in fact has had far more influence on such patterns than previously indicated by the literature.

McMaster University Library

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