Robert Stanley Weir

Robert Stanley Weir
Short Name: Robert Stanley Weir
Full Name: Weir, Robert Stanley, 1856-1926
Birth Year: 1856
Death Year: 1926

Weir, Robert Stanley. (Hamilton, Ontario, November 15, 1856--August 20, 1926, Lake Memphremagog, Quebec). Unitarian. McGill University (Montreal), B.C.L., 1881; D.C.L., 1897. He took up law after training, and working for some years, as a schoolteacher. He began to pratise law in Montreal in 1881, and taught it at McGill 1909-1920, as well as writing articles on it, and publishing verse and prose in magazines. For the tercentenary of Quebec City (1908) he composed an English version of "O Canada" which, as kept insisting for the rest of his life, was not an attempted translation of the French lyric which Judge Adolphe B. Routhier had written for the 1880 St-Jean-Baptiste celebrations at Quebec, but an independent poem constructed to pit the tune which Calixa Lavallée had composed for that occasion. Since his poem invokes God only in the final stanza, it was never sung in church until after 1967, when Parliament took incomplete steps toward designating it as Canada's national anthem, and then usually with the amended wording proposed to Parliament in 1972, on which no definite action was then taken.

--Hugh D. McKellar, DNAH Archives

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