Colonel Joseph Martin Delamere was a native of Ireland, son of Dawson and Jane (Martin) Delamere, both natives of the Emerald Isle, the former born July 1, 1803, and the latter July 29, 1808. In Ireland Dawson Delamere was a civil engineer. He married Jane Martin in 1832, and on June 1, 1855, they settled in Toronto, where Mr. Delamere was connected with Her Majesty’s Customs until his death in 1876. His wife survived him ten years. Their children were as follows:
- John Henry Delamere, clerk of the Provisional County of Haliburton, at Minden (b Nov 1837-1916)
- Sarah M. Delamere, of Toronto
- Captain Thomas Dawson Delamere, KC, of Toronto
- Emily M. Delamere, wife of Venerable Archdeacon A. C. Hill, of St. Thomas
- Joseph Martin Delamere
- Margaret B. Delamere, widow of Davidson Black.
Colonel Joseph M. Delamere was born July 2, 1849, and was but six years of age when he came to Canada with his parents in 1855. He was educated at Upper Canada College, and while a student in that institution, joined the Queen’s Own Rifles as a Rifleman in 1865. His military service included
- 1865 – Joined as a Rifleman (later corporal and sergeant)
- 1866 – Service in the Fenian Raid, 1866, receiving a medal for his services
- 1875 – Service in the Pilgrimage Riots
- Jan 28, 1876 – Commissioned Lieutenant
- 1877 – Service in the Belleville Riots
- Mar 1, 1878 – Promoted Captain
- Oct 27, 1882 – Appointed Adjutant
- 1882-83 – Musketry Instructor to Brigade Camp, Niagara
- 1885 – Service in the North-West Rebellion, as Adjutant of the Regiment, and was in operation against Chief Bear’s Band, during June and July, 1885, receiving a medal there also.
- Mar 12, 1887 – Promoted Major
- Mar 26, 1896 – Promoted Lieutenant Colonel and QOR Commanding Officer
- Jun 1900 – Appointed command of Bisley Team
- Received the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers’ Decoration
- By 1907 – In command of the Third Infantry Brigade.
In May, 1868, Colonel Delamere was appointed an assistant clerk at the Provincial Legislature, and in 1871 became postmaster there.
On April 22, 1878, Colonel Delamere was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth M. Denison, daughter of the late Col. George T. Denison, of “Rusholme,” Toronto. To this union the following children were born:
- Dawson George Delamere died at the age of seven years.
- Eva M. married H. C. Strange, of the Bank of Commerce, Berlin, Ont.
- Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Gillmor Delamere (1883-1945), president and financial agent of the Canada Poultry and Produce Company of Stratford, Ont; he married Miss Agnes Forbes Morison, of Winnipeg, Manitoba. He served in the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles in South Africa, and received a medal with four clasps. He served with the 1st Battalion, CEF during the First World War and after being wounded at the 2nd Battle of Ypres in April 1915, returned to Canada to raise the 110th Battalion and then served at No. 1 Military District . He commanded the Perth Regiment from 1926 to 1927 and died on 27 October 1945. (See Matthew K. Barrett’s article.) His children included another Queen’s Own Rifle’s Commanding Officer:
- Allan Martin Dawson Delamere (1906-1967)
- Thomas Denison Delamere (b.1908)
- Colonel John Morison Delamere, MBE, ED, CD (b. 17 Nov 1909 in Stratford, Ontario; died 15 Jul 1967)
- Agnes Delamere (b. c1912)
- Esther E Delamere (b. c1914)
- Peter Delamere
- Elizabeth Delamere
The Colonel and his wife were members of the Church of England, and he was a member of the Toronto Club, the Canadian Military Institute (1898-1900), was on the executive committee of the Dominion and Provincial Rifle Association, and a member of many other organizations.
Delamere died 9 April 1928 and is buried in St James Cemetery, Toronto.Reference: Commemorative Biographical Record of the County of York, Ontario Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens and Many of the Early Settled Families, 1907