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MacDOUGALL, DUGALD (Donald) LORN, stockbroker and capitalist; b. 12 Aug. 1811 in Auchdoonan (Western Isles), Scotland, son of Peter MacDougall, major in the 25th Foot; m. in 1857 Lucy Boston, daughter of John Boston*, sheriff of the Montreal District, and they had four children; d. 13 Nov. 1885 at Montreal, Que.

Having passed his youth in Devon, England, Dugald Lorn MacDougall immigrated to Lower Canada in 1840. He settled in Montreal where, in partnership with John Glass, he opened a stockbroker’s office, reputedly the first in the city. With still relatively few companies offering shares to the public, MacDougall and Glass apparently conducted a commission business in produce and livestock as well as stocks and bonds. In 1849 both associates were among the Montreal merchants who signed the Annexation Manifesto. The Montreal directory for 1849–50 lists MacDougall as a produce and bill broker in the firm of MacDougall Brothers, probably a partnership with his brother George Campbell.

Thomas Davidson, the son of David Davidson, cashier (general manager) of the Bank of Montreal, joined the firm in 1859, but a few years later D. L. MacDougall and Davidson retired from the partnership to open their own brokerage. Through Davidson’s connections with the Bank of Montreal and his family ties with James Ferrier, a prominent local capitalist, the new firm developed important contacts in the Montreal business community. In the 1860s MacDougall and Davidson became general agents for the North British and Mercantile Insurance Company, based in Edinburgh, Scotland, and both partners were appointed to the company’s Canadian board of directors.

While continuing his stock-trading business with Davidson, MacDougall formed a partnership with Ferrier, Edward Martin Hopkins, Ferdinand McCulloch, and Thomas Reynolds to speculate in stocks and bonds. Incorporated as the Montreal Investment Association in 1865, the company had a capital reserve of $1 million, divided into 5,000 shares of $200, and anticipated opening an office in London, England. Active into the 1880s, the association bought and sold bonds, stocks, real estate, and debentures, and occasionally invested in loans and mortgages.

MacDougall played a role of considerable importance during the formative years of the trade in stocks and bonds in Montreal. A councillor on the Montreal Board of Trade during the 1850s, he was chairman of the Montreal Merchants’ Exchange and Reading Room in 1860. He was active on the Board of Stock and Produce Brokers for a number of years and in 1863 was among those responsible for the reorganization which led to the creation of the Board of Brokers. Separated from the trade in produce, subsequently carried on at the Montreal Corn Exchange Association, the new board was an informal association designed to govern brokerage rates, the sale of shares, and the certification of brokers. The board, which was in certain aspects as much a private club as a financial institution, used the first fee charged for listing a company to purchase champagne and, in the first dispute between members, ruled that the party at fault provide a case of champagne as a fine.

Ten years later, in 1873, MacDougall was a central figure in transforming the Board of Brokers into the Montreal Stock Exchange. With his brothers (Hartland St Clair and George Campbell), Frank Bond, and James Burnett, he was among the principals named in the act of incorporation granted the exchange in 1874 and was subsequently elected its first chairman, a post he held until illness forced him to resign in 1883. His brother Hartland St Clair served as chairman in 1894–95 and 1897–99, and, continuing the family tradition, his nephew Hartland Brydges, son of George Campbell MacDougall, was elected to the same post in 1914–15. Following the 1874 reorganization, membership on the Montreal Stock Exchange rose from 28 to 42. The cost of a seat was set at $1,000 and by 1883 this fee had risen to $4,500.

Aside from his activity as a broker, MacDougall made a place for himself in the circle of Montreal businessmen speculating in railways, mines, and other sectors of the economy. With such prominent capitalists as Hugh Allan, Louis Renaud*, and John Joseph Caldwell Abbott*, MacDougall was among the founding directors of the Canada Marine Insurance Company in 1856. Two years later he participated in the formation of the Montreal Mountain Boulevard Company, as did William Dow*, Mathew Hamilton Gault, Luther Hamilton Holton*, Peter Redpath, and others, and with many of the same investors he was behind the formation of the Montreal Railway Terminus Company in 1861.

MacDougall was also a major investor in a number of companies formed to extract and refine mineral deposits in various parts of Quebec and Ontario. In association with Alexander Tilloch Galt* and others he set up the Orford Mining and Smelting Company of Lower Canada in 1863; with Harry Braithwaite Abbott, Thomas Reynolds, and Thomas Ryan, the Kennebec Gold Mining Company in 1864; with Sir Narcisse-Fortunat Belleau*, Renaud, Reynolds, Ryan, and William McNaughton, the Gaspé Lead Mining Company in 1866; with William Cunningham, Thomas Cramp, Ryan, and William Henry Allan Davies, the Canada Plumbago Company, for mining in Buckingham Township near Ottawa, also in 1866; and with James Hodges*, Walter Shanly*, William Dow, and John Redpath*, the Canada Peat Fuel Company, with its works in the counties of Napierville, Beauharnois, Huntingdon, and Châteauguay, in 1867. In later years he had interests in the Montreal Mining Company, the Huron Copper Bay Company, and several silver mines in the Lake Superior area. Among his other interests should be mentioned his participation in the formation of the Consumers’ Gas Company of the City and District of Montreal in 1873, directorships in the Guarantee Company of North America and the Accident Insurance Company of North America, partnership in the Touchwood Qu’Appelle Land and Colonization Company Limited in 1883, and considerable investments in the Bank of Montreal, the Merchants’ Bank of Canada, the Bank of Toronto, and the Metropolitan Bank.

MacDougall lived in a sumptuous residence on Sherbrooke Street valued at $10,000 in 1881. Both he and his wife were involved in various charitable associations: he, most notably, was a founding subscriber in the Montreal Protestant House of Industry and Refuge in 1863; Lucy MacDougall was active in the Montreal Ladies’ Benevolent Society. A respected member of the congregation of the Anglican Christ Church Cathedral, MacDougall lent his assistance in the founding of the Mount Royal Cemetery Company.

Outside of these philanthropic and religious interests MacDougall led an active social life, and when the prestigious St James Club of Montreal was founded in 1858 he was one of the 93 original members, in company with such notables as his father-in-law John Boston, Peter McGill [McCutcheon*], John Young*, Robert Cassels, Thomas Cramp, and the brothers Thomas and William Workman*. One of the incorporators of the Montreal Skating Club, founded in 1861, MacDougall also took a strong interest in the activities of the Montreal Hunt Club, serving as master of the hounds from 1854 to 1858. During the period of tension in American-British relations following the seizure of the Trent by the United States Navy in November 1861, MacDougall organized and commanded the Royal Guides Governor General’s Body Guard for Lower Canada, a militia unit based in Montreal. In 1866 he led the troop against the Fenian invaders at Saint-Armand-Centre and Pigeon Hill, in the county of Missisquoi. The Royal Guides were disbanded three years later.

Despite his failing health MacDougall was still active in business at the time of his death in 1885. His funeral, presided over by William Bennett Bond*, Anglican bishop of Montreal, was held on 16 November and as a tribute to the late chairman the Montreal Stock Exchange adjourned its activities for the day. In recognition of his leadership in establishing the exchange, a portrait of MacDougall still hangs in the boardroom of the Stock Exchange Tower, Victoria Square, Montreal.

Charles Doyon

AVM, Doc. administratifs, Rôles d’évaluation, 1881. PAC, RG 68, 240. Can., Parl., Sessional papers, 1867–68, VI, no.12; 1872, VI, no.13; 1877, VII, no.12; 1878, IX, no.15; 1880, VIII, no.12; 1885, IX, no.17; Statutes, 1873, c.103; 1874, c.54. Can., Prov. of, Statutes, 1841, c.66; 1856, c.124; 1858, c.19, c.22; 1861, c.82, c.123; February–May 1863, c.62; August–October 1863, c.78; 1864, c.111; January–March 1865, c.42. Elgin-Grey papers (Doughty), IV: 1487–94. Que., Statutes, 1873–74, c.54. Gazette (Montreal), 14 May 1873; 14, 16 Nov. 1885. Montreal Herald and Daily Commercial Gazette, 14, 16 Nov. 1885. Canada directory, 1857–58. The Canadian army, 1855–1965; lineages – regimental histories, comp. C. E. Dornbusch (Cornwallville, N.Y., 1966), 106–7. Canadian men and women of the time (Morgan, 1898), 687. Canadian men and women of the time (Morgan, 1912), 301–2, 687. Dominion annual register, 1883: 342; 1885: 267. J.-J. Lefebvre, “Présidents, Bourse de Montréal, 1874–1959,” BRH, 67 (1961): 57–61. Montreal directory, 1842–43; 1850; 1857; 1860; 1862–68; 1870–85; 1893–94. A register of the regiments and corps of the British army: the ancestry of the regiments and corps of the regular establishment, ed. Arthur Swinson (London, 1972), 119. E. A. Collard, Chalk to computers: the story of the Montreal Stock Exchange ([Montreal], 1974).

General Bibliography

Cite This Article

Charles Doyon, “MacDOUGALL, DUGALD LORN,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 11, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed May 21, 2024, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/macdougall_dugald_lorn_11E.html.

The citation above shows the format for footnotes and endnotes according to the Chicago manual of style (16th edition). Information to be used in other citation formats:

Permalink:   http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/macdougall_dugald_lorn_11E.html
Author of Article:   Charles Doyon
Title of Article:   MacDOUGALL, DUGALD LORN
Publication Name:   Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 11
Publisher:   University of Toronto/Université Laval
Year of publication:   1982
Year of revision:   1982
Access Date:   May 21, 2024