Charles Young


Charles Young was born in Glasgow, Scotland on 30th April 1812, son of John Young, agricultural writer, born in Falkirk, Scotland in Sept. 1773. John Young and family emigrated from Scotland to Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1814 and was representative of Sydney in the provincial assembly from 1825 until his death on 6th October 1837.

Charles studied at Dalhousie College in Halifax where he took honours and entered the law office of his brothers George and William. In 1838 he was called to the bars of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, and, forming a co-partnership with his brothers, practiced for several years. On 23rd November 1847, he was the first barrister in Prince Edward Island to be appointed as Queen's Counsel. At the age of twenty-eight he entered the P.E.I. House of Assembly, and was soon transferred to the Legislative Council, where he sat for twenty-three years (during ten of which he was its president). From 29th May 1851 to 2nd May 1853 and again from 29th June 1858 to 11th April 1859 he held the position of Attorney General and he was also administrator of the government of Prince Edward Island for four years.

Like his brother William, Charles was a warm supporter of the policy of Responsible government and he was the first public man on the island to support that principle. In 1852 he received his appointment as judge of probate, and sixteen years later he became judge in bankruptcy. In March of 1875, Charles retired from the latter post. As a barrister he had a very large and lucrative practice, hardly a case of importance occurring in which he was not retained. In tenantry cases he was almost invariably retained by the tenants, and the peculiar land laws of the island found always in hint a ready and logical interpreter. He frequently delivered public lectures, and the Mechanics' Institute of Charlottetown owes to him its foundation. As of 1845 he was a warm temperance advocate and he had been a local preacher of the Methodist church for many years. In 1854 Charles Young was granted rank and precedence under Governor Sir Alexander Bannerman thus making him a councillor, a senior member and president of the Legislative Council. In 1858 the Queen offered him the dignity of knighthood, which he declined.