William BRYMNER, R.C.A.
well-known Canadian Artist and Dominion Archivist
born in Scotland
Painting by Ruth McMillan in 1976
Shows the Head of the Rideau Canal Locks in Ottawa, Canada in 1893
E-mail Allan Lewis
February 18, 2014:
The artist William Brymner was the son of Douglas Brymner who had been the Dominion
Archivist (now head of Library and Archives Canada). The following excerpt is from a list of university
graduates who had previously attended the Ottawa Collegiate, now Lisgar Collegiate.
Source: A History of the Ottawa Collegiate Institute, 1843-1903,
The Mortimer Company, Ottawa, 1904, hard cover, page 229.
The book William Brymner, Artist, Teacher, Colleague published in 2010 by the Agnes Etherington Art Centre,
Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, ISBN 978-1-55339-251-4, is a very good biography of William Brymner
and contains many colour photographs of his works. In his early days, Brymner followed the yearly trips to the
shanties of the lumbermen in order to sketch and paint in the wilderness of the Ottawa Valley.
He travelled to the Madawaska River system in Renfrew County and made the
following sketch of High Falls. This work and other very early sketches appear in the Book / CD
Shanty, Forest and River Life in the Backwoods of Canada (1884).
The CD is available online from archivecdbooks.ca
November 24, 2019:
Early Morning in September
by William Brymner, 1899
National Gallery of Canada - Public Domain
February 21, 2014:
So good of you to showcase Brymner, one of my favourite Canadian artists.
I bought the attached small Brymner watercolour about 20 years ago. It
depicts Ste. Famille parish church on Ile d'Orleans. The purchase was made
before I started researching my family history. Later, to my pleasant
surprise, I discovered that Ste. Famille was the parish where my first
direct Canadian ancestors, Nicolas Audet dit Lapointe and Madeleine Despres,
were married in 1670.
The smaller watercolour is entitled " Wheatfield St. Eustache" and shows the
traditional method of stacking wheat in early Quebec. My Joanis, Quevillon,
Maheu and Maisonneuve ancestors were farmers in the area in the early 1800s.
September 11, 2015:
In 1884, Douglas Brymner, father of the painter, was the Dominion Archivist here in Ottawa.
Here is the front page of his Annual Report for the year 1884.