Lempriere, Captain Arthur Reid
b. 1835-08-22
d. 1927-04-10
Captain Arthur Reid Lempriere was born on 22 August 1835 in Ewell, Surrey, England. Lempriere was an officer amongst the third group of Royal Engineers (RE) in British Columbia, he was primarily responsible for the survey and construction of the Boston Bar Trail from Hope to Lytton.1 Before joining the RE as an officer, Lempriere was educated at the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich.2 He received his commission to join the RE in 1853, and was promoted to lieutenant a year later on 20 June 1854.3 As a member of the third detachment of RE's to travel to Vancouver Island, Lempriere left England in the Summer of 1858 on board the HMS Thames City.4
On 12 April 1859, Lempriere arrived in Esquimalt, in which he was charged with the duties of: Commissary Officer and a member of the photographic department which included the production of photographic copies of maps and documents of the surveys and road constructions.5 In the Summer of 1859, Lempriere was simultaneously appointed as 2nd Captain and put in charge of a detachment of RE's to be sent to deal with the US troops on San Juan Island -- in what is referred to as “The Pig War”.6 Lempriere's time in San Juan was short and he was eventually sent en route to the mainland, to the colony of British Columbia; it was here that he assisted in the construction of the Boston Bar Trail. He was equally charged with a special oversight of the government stores in New Westminster under Colonel Moody -- Lempriere was responsible for deliveries and item checks.7
On 11 April 1860, Lempriere was recalled back to London by the War Office Authorities, it was explained to him that his recall was on account of his earlier promotion to 2nd Captain.8 His time was short lived in BC and he left on the steamer Panama on 9 June 1860, although he remained with the RE Columbia Detachment until 1863.9 Throughout Lempriere's career, he rose through the ranks as Captain in 1866, Major in 1872, and Major-General in 1882 -- that same year he retired from service -- he remained in retirement until his death on 10 April 1927 in Camberley, Surrey Heath Borough, England.10
Besides being a member of the Royal Engineers, Lempriere also posed as a model for one of John Everett Millais' paintings -- “A Huguenot on St. Bartholomew's Day”.11 And, it has been said by scholars that he was the nephew of George Hills, the Bishop of the Colony of British Columbia; however, this is questionable as there is no genealogical proof.12
Mentions of this person in the documents
The Colonial Despatches Team. Lempriere, Captain Arthur Reid. The Colonial Despatches of Vancouver Island and British Columbia 1846-1871, Edition 2.2, ed. The Colonial Despatches Team. Victoria, B.C.: University of Victoria. https://bcgenesis.uvic.ca/lempriere.html.

Last modified: 2020-12-02 13:40:34 -0800 (Wed, 02 Dec 2020) (SVN revision: 5008)