York University Libraries | Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections online exhibits

Young, Egerton Ryerson

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Young, Egerton Ryerson

Person Item Type Metadata

Birth Date



Crosby Township, Upper Canada

Death Date


Biographical Text

Authored by: Victoria Ho

Egerton Ryerson Young was originally from Crosby Township, Upper Canada. He completed school in Bond Head and obtained a teaching certificate from the Council of Public Instruction in 1860. In 1861, Young became the sole teacher of 105 students at Madoc school. It was a challenging but rewarding career for him. Towards the end of his teaching career he felt a lack in spiritual progress so he became an ordained Methodist minister in 1867. In 1868, Young accepted a position as a pastor at the Wesleyan mission at Lake Winnipeg, and later among the Cree at Nelson House, and the Saulteaux at Berens River. In 1888, he made an extended lecture tour of North America and Britain, and by 1890 he wrote over a dozen books based on his mission experience. Two of his most well-known books were By canoe and dog-train among the Cree and Salteaux Indians (1890) and Stories from Indian wigwams and northern camp-fires (1893).

In 1904-1905 he and his wife travelled around the world, lecturing and distributing his books. Many of his books included stories about Native life, animal stories, and tales of adventures for juveniles. Some of his books were reprinted more than once which helped him become one of the most successful writers in Canada by the turn of that century. 


Brown, Jennifer S.H. “Young, Egerton Ryerson”. Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Online ed. Toronto: University of Toronto, vol. 13, 2003. http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/young_egerton_ryerson_13E.html. Accessed 19 July 2017.

“Young, Egerton Ryerson, 1840-1909”. Literature Online Biography, Online ed.New Brunswick: The Electronic Text Centre at the University of New Brunswick Libraries, 2003. http://gateway.proquest.com/openurl?ctx_ver=Z39.88-2003&xri:pqil:res_ver=0.2&res_id=xr  i:lion&rft_id=xri:lion:rec:ref:BIO006035. Accessed 19 July 2017. 


“Young, Egerton Ryerson,” York University Libraries | Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections online exhibits, accessed September 26, 2023, https://archives.library.yorku.ca/items/show/4207.