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William Goodwin Kingshott

William Goodwin Kingshott was the son of James Kingshott and his wife Mary Ann Elizabeth Cookman. I have sometimes seen him referred to as William Goodman Kingshott, yet I have found no documentary evidence so far for either middle name. In all of the documents that I have located so far, he is simply referred to as William Kingshott. William was also the uncle of one of our war heroes, Gordon Gerald Kingshott, who was sadly killed during the second world war.


William was the oldest of the nine children of James and Mary Ann Kingshott and was, therefore, the first of that family to be born as a fully fledged Canadian. 


I first come across him in documentary form in the 1861 census of what was then Canada West. At this time he was still living at home at this time - he was only 14 - and he has no occupation listed. His father is listed as a Constable. Whether this is a formalised police officer or one of the older pre-police constables I am not sure. I suspect that he found work at that age as an agricultural labourer. At this time they were living in the township of Bruce, now in Ontario, but then in Canada West. 


James Kingshott family in Canada 1861 Ce

The Kingshott family - including Sophia Cookman, who is a relative of James' wife, in Bruce, Canada West. - Image from the 1861 Census courtesy of

Ten years later, William had moved from Bruce county around Georgian Bay and found himself in Watt township, Muskoka. At this time, at the early age of 24 years, he is listed as a farmer. This means that he had his own land which was some achievement for someone of that age. 


On 6th February 1873, William married a lady called Johanna McKay. She was the same age as William but had emigrated from Scotland, arriving in Canada at an as yet unidentified time before this. As a result of this marriage, and no doubt as a result of the long and cold Ontario nights, William and Johanna went on to have a large family of nine children that I have located so far. There are therefore a huge number of people alive today who descend from this family. If you are one of them, please let me know

William G Kingshott and Johanna McKay.JP

William Goodwin Kingshott and his wife Johanna nee McKay - Photo from the Seguin Public Libraries Digital Archive.

William Goodman Kingshott.JPG

William Goodwin Kingshott

Wm Goodwin Kingshott Family Portrait.JPG

William and Johanna Kingshott and some of their family

William lived a long life, and grew a magnificent beard to prove it! He died at Humphrey township on 13th February 1928. His wife pre=deceased him by abour three years, dying on 31st May 1925 at Burks Falls, Ullswater. 

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