William Carpenter Bompas

(1834—1906) bishop of Selkirk, Canada

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(1834–1906). Bompas was born in London, son of a prominent barrister who died when Bompas was ten. His early life was unpromising; he tried and abandoned law, then was ordained a deacon of the Church of England in 1859. Lacking money or social connections, he spent several years as a lowly curate until, in 1865, after several attempts, he was accepted as a missionary, ordained a priest, and sent to northwestern Canada. There he established a life as a priest, then bishop, in the dioceses of Athabasca, Mackenzie, and finally Selkirk (later Yukon), always moving further to the northwest. Returning to England to be consecrated bishop in 1873, he married his first cousin, Selina Cox (1830–1917). He spent the rest of his life in the Canadian North, dying in 1906 at his mission at Carcross in the southern Yukon. Bompas was devoted to the indigenous people to whom he ministered. He was less popular with the non-Native population, especially the miners in the Yukon, whose influence on the First Nations he disliked and feared.

From The Oxford Companion to Canadian History in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: History of the Americas.

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