George frederick cameron

George Frederick Cameron (1854-1885), from Canadian Poets, 1916. Courtesy University of Pennsylvania.

George Frederick Cameron
Born September 24, 1854
Died September 17, 1885 (aged 30)
Occupation Poet, lawyer, and journalist

George Frederick Cameron (September 24, 1854 - September 17, 1885) was a Canadian poet, lawyer, and journalist, sometimes grouped with Canada's Confederation Poets.


Cameron was born in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, the son of Jessie (Sutherland) and James Grant Cameron. He was educated in New Glasgow.[1]

He moved to Boston in April 1869. He graduated from the Boston University School of Law in 1877.[2]

He worked for the law firm Dean, Butler & Abbot of Boston from 1877 to 1882.[2] He contributed poetry to Boston periodicals, including the Courier and the Transcript.[3] In fall 1882 he enrolled in Queen’s College in Kingston, Ontario, where he won a poetry prize in 1883 for “Adelphi.”

He married Ella Amey on August 22, 1883. The couple had a daughter, Jessie Cameron Alison.[1]

He was the editor of the Daily News in Kingston, Ontario from March 1883 until his death of heart failure on September 17, 1885 at Millhaven, Ontario.[4]


Cameron may known as the librettist for the operetta Leo, the Royal Cadet.[5]


In 1887 his brother, Charles L. Cameron, edited and published a selection of Cameron's poems under the title Lyrics on Freedom, Love and Death (Kingston, 1887).

Cameron's poem "On Leaving the Coast of Nova Scotia" was included in the 1889 anthology Songs of the Great Dominion. His poetry also appeared in A Century of Canadian Sonnets, 1910.

His operetta, Leo the Royal Cadet (with music by Oscar Ferdinand Telgmann), premiered in 1889 in Kingston. It was one of the most popular operettas ever written in Canada, with over 1,700 performances between 1889 and 1925. It was revived by the Toronto Operetta Theatre in 2001, and staged again in 2010.[6]

George Frederick Cameron was declared a Person of National Historic Significance in 1946. A bronze plaque was affixed to the New Glasgow post office (since moved to the town Dominion Building) by Historic Sites and Monuments of Canada which reads: "George Frederick Cameron, Poet and Journalist, Author of "Lyrics of Freedom, Love and Death". Born at New Glasgow, 24 September 1854. Died in Kingston, Ontario, 17 September 1885." [7]



  • Lyrics on Freedom, Love and Death (edited by Charles J. Cameron). Kingston, ON: L.W. Shannon / Boston: Alexander Moore, 1887; Toronto & Buffalo, NY: University of Toronto Press, 1973.[8]


  • An entirely new and original military opera in four acts, entitled: Leo, the Royal Cadet (words by George Frederick Cameron, with music by Oscar Ferdinand Telgmann). 1889.
  • Ho! Ho! My Airy Fairy Maid, Ho! Ho! My Pretty Maid, I met him in the far away from Opera and Operetta Excerpts Composer: Oscar Ferdinand Telgmann Words: George Frederick Cameron [9]
  • "Farewell, O Fragrant Pumpkin Pie" from Leo, the Royal Cadet (Composer: Oscar Ferdinand Telgmann Words: George Frederick Cameron) [10]
  • "Our Premier" (words by George Frederick Cameron, music by Oscar Telgmann). Kingston, ON: C.J. Cameron, 1885.[11]

See alsoEdit

Standing on Tiptoe, by George Frederick Cameron Clarica Poetry Moment

Standing on Tiptoe, by George Frederick Cameron Clarica Poetry Moment



The George F. Cameron fonds at the University of British Columbia consists of manuscript notebooks as well as handwritten and typewritten copies of his poetry.[12]


  1. 1.0 1.1 George Frederick Cameron, Strangers to Us All: Lawyers and poetry, College of Law, West Virginia University. Web, Mar. 30, 2017.
  2. 2.0 2.1 George Frederick Cameron fonds at the University of British columbia
  3. George Frederick Cameron
  4. George Frederick Cameron
  5. Cameron, George Frederick, 1854-1885 Leo, the Royal cadet [microform] Kingston, Ontario
  6. Christopher Hoile, Leo, the Royal Cadet, Reviews 2010, May 1, 2010, Stage Door. Web, Mar. 31, 2017.
  7. George F. Cameron fonds
  8. Search results = au:George Frederick Cameron, WorldCat, OCLC ONline Computer Library Center Inc. Web, Mar. 31, 2017.
  11. Our Premier
  12. George F. Cameron fonds

External linksEdit

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