Luard, Captain Henry Reynolds
b. 1828-06-30
d. 1870-02-26
Captain Henry Reynolds Luard was the Executive Officer of the Department of Lands and Works in the Colony of British Columbia from 1858 to 1863.1 He arrived in Esquimalt, after his departure from England on 9 October 1858, aboard the Thames City on 12 April 1859.2 The majority of Luard's appearance throughout the despatches is the result of a politically-fuelled debate on whether or not he should be appointed as Col. Richard Clement Moody's replacement as the Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works.3 James Douglas supported Luard's appointment and suggested him as Moody's successor in a letter to the Duke of Newcastle in September 1863.4 Moody objected to Douglas's recommendation; he believed that, while Luard was very well regarded within the Colony, he did not have the necessary experience to fulfill the demands of the position.5 Furthermore, Moody prevented Douglas from delaying Luard's scheduled departure from the Colony, with the other Royal Engineers, until Newcastle had decided whether or not he would become the new Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works.6 Ultimately, Newcastle appointed Sir Joseph William Trutch to the position in February of 1864 and Luard returned to England.7
Luard was born on 30 June 1828, in Warwick, Warwickshire to a family of landed Gentry.8 In 1845, he attended the Royal Military Academy in Woolwich and graduated as a Royal Engineer.9 From his graduation until 1858, Luard was posted throughout England and the West Indies and achieved the rank of 2nd Captain.10 After serving in the Colony of British Columbia for three and a half years, Luard was promoted to the rank of Captain on 1 April 1862.11 During this time, Luard also began a romance with his future wife Miss Caroline Mary Leggatt of Victoria (b. 1844).12 They met while Luard and Moody were in Victoria during the extremely cold winter of 1861-1862 that caused the Fraser River to freeze solid, which likely delayed their return to the mainland.13 Luard and Leggatt were engaged one year later and married at Christ's Church in Victoria on 8 October 1863.14
Since Luard was denied permission to stay in BC, he and his new wife returned to England in the fall of 1863.15 For the duration of his life, Luard remained in the army and was posted at Portsmouth, England and in Ireland.16 He and Leggatt had two children, Henry Arthur (1865-1901), born in Gosport, Southampton, died in Winburg, Orange River Colony, and Eleanor Mary (1868-?), born in Athlone, Ireland.17 Luard died on 26 February 1870 from a gastrointestinal illness in Ireland.18
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