Former Pupil Biographies
James Clinskill (1853 - 1936)
|James Clinkskill was born in Glasgow,
Scotland in 1853. He had established himself in business in Scotland
as a groceryman when he decided to come to Canada in 1881.He started
his life in Canada in Winnipeg where he joined as partner with another
man in start some sort of merchandising business in Prince Albert. He
moved to Battleford shortly after that. The Riel Rebellion took place
while he was in Battleford and during the rebellion he lost his
building and all his goods. James Clinkskill was active in his
community right from the start. Besides serving in the home guard
during the rebellion he also helped to set up a Presbyterian Mission
for Battleford. In 1888 he entered politics for the first time as a
member of the Territorial Assembly representing Battleford and, later,
the area around Saskatoon. Clinkskill came to Saskatoon in 1889 and
purchased James Leslies general store. He was an astute businessman
and expanded his business involvement. He erected a block on
Twenty-first Street in downtown Saskatoon where the sidewalk still
bears the insert that spells out "Clinkskill" even though the building
is now gone.
He also became involved in the local community after
his move to Saskatoon. He was mayor of Saskatoon when it became a town and
again mayor when Saskatoon grew into a city during which he was actively
involved in guiding the installation of the light, water and sewer systems
of the new city. He also became one of the governors of the University of
Saskatchewan at its very beginning.
|The newspaper reported in his obituary in
August of 1936 that he caught a chill which led to his final illness
at age 83. An early biography of him in the newspaper has a photograph
of him captioned "Saskatoon's Dad".
A family gravesite, the headstone marks the graves of Thomas Malaffy,
Jean Andrew Baird, daughter of James and Dora Clinkskill, Capt. James
Clinkskill (killed in action), son of James and Dora Clinkskill, Dora
Babington, wife of James Clinkskill, and Grace Baird, Wife of T.E.
Malaffy, as well as James Clinkskill.