Lieutenant Governor Simcoe's Table Top Desk
Description
Media Type
Object
Item Type
Desks
Description
Desk made of various kinds of wood. Given to John Graves Simcoe by woodworking artisans. Opens up to reveal flat felt surface and several small compartments for pens and ink.
Notes
This small desk is over two hundred years old. It shows the fine artistry of craftsmen in the early days of Upper Canada (Ontario). It was given to Lieutenant Governor John Graves Simcoe, a British Officer sent to Canada to assist the settlement of a great influx of citizens loyal to the British Crown after the revolution of the thirteen English colonies in 1776. Simcoe granted land, provided means for building houses, and also provided seed grain, cows and agricultural implements. Governor Simcoe organized the province in about five years from 1791 to 1796.

In appreciation of his assistance, some careful woodworking artisans presented this desk to him. When Simcoe returned to England he took this desk with him.

His efforts in Canada were so successful that he was appointed as Governor of India, but before he could take up this appointment he died as a result of a bite from a pet fox which he had taken with him from Canada.

When his estate was being settled, this desk was given to his sister, who gave it to the Duke of Cambridge's daughter. My great-grandmother, Margret Armstrong (nee Frencham) was the sewing instructor to the Duke's daughter, and this desk was presented to her in 1847. She and her husband, George Armstrong, came to Canada in 1849.

One of the sons of George and Margret, namely, John Wesley Armstrong (my grandfather) inherited the desk. From him the desk came to my mother, Louisa, the youngest daughter of John Wesley. Lousia married Rev. Frank Goff.

This table top desk was presented to the South Grey Museum in Flesherton where my mother was raised.

- S.A. Goff, grandson of John Wesley Armstrong
Date of Publication
1796
Subject(s)
Personal Name(s)
Simcoe, John Graves Armstrong, John Wesley
Contact
South Grey Museum
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Lieutenant Governor Simcoe's Table Top Desk


Desk made of various kinds of wood. Given to John Graves Simcoe by woodworking artisans. Opens up to reveal flat felt surface and several small compartments for pens and ink.