Friday, August 24, 2007

Legal Briefs

Who Is Judge Prowse?
from the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online

, DANIEL WOODLEY, lawyer, politician, judge, historian, essayist, and office holder; b. 12 Sept. 1834 in Port de Grave, Nfld, fourth of the seven children of Robert Prowse and Jane Woodley; m. 13 July 1859 Sarah Anne Edleston Farrar in Sowerby, near Halifax, England, and they had three sons and three daughters; d. 27 Jan. 1914 in St John’s.

The Prowse family from which the inimitable judge and historian Daniel Woodley Prowse descended was of Devon origin, and the first member with a direct Newfoundland connection appears to have been Samuel Prowse of Torquay, a West Country trader, who married the eldest daughter of the Mudge family, also of Torquay and with old Newfoundland interests. Their son Robert came to the colony at the age of ten as an apprentice, married a daughter of Daniel Woodley of St Mary Church, Devon, and by the 1830s was in charge of the Conception Bay operations of the St John’s firm Brown, Hoyles and Company. The first four of their children were born in Port de Grave, a settlement of some 400 inhabitants. Acute economic conditions, not helped on occasion by sectarian divisions, created turbulence during these years, and in 1835 the Prowse house and premises were burnt to the ground, whereupon Robert moved with his family to St John’s. A versatile entrepreneur, he soon established under his name a firm that reached some prominence as a supplier to the Bank fishery and an exporter of fish, and in other ventures [...]

To read the rest of this dictionary entry, click here.


The audio adaptation of Judge Prowse Presiding, a one-man play written and performed by Frank Holden, is available from Rattling Books.