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In Memoriam: Father Edward Jackman

Jun. 22, 2021

Victoria University flew its flag at half-mast on June 21 in honour of Father Edward Jackman Vic 6T2, Hon. 2T0. He passed away on June 18 at the age of 81. Jackman was an avid supporter of Victoria and the University of Toronto, in addition to many other universities. He was the vice-chairman of the Jackman Foundation, a former Dominican priest and secretary-general of the Canadian Catholic Historical Association.

“Father Jackman was a stalwart supporter of Victoria College, especially its research mission,” says William Robins, president of Victoria University. “Over many years, he contributed generously to projects such as the Records of Early English Drama (REED), the Petworth Project of Genealogocial Research, as well as supporting the Mary Rowell Coyne Professorship. The entire Victoria community will miss his generosity of spirit, his quick wit, and his deep dedication to teaching and learning.”

Alexandra Johnston, principal of Victoria College from 1981–1991, is the founder and senior consultant for REED. “Since 1989, through the Jackman Foundation, Father Jackman has been an important funder of REED, a now internationally known research project in early English drama that was founded at a meeting at Victoria in 1975. He became a close friend of many members of the REED team, enjoying social events with us and frequently travelling with us in the United Kingdom to attend REED events. He was a gentle and deeply generous man who became part of the REED project in his unique way. We feel we have lost one of us.”

At Vic, Jackman studied philosophy and, throughout his life, he took a great interest in the history of Ireland. He was a writer and supporter of the two-volume The Untold Story: The Irish in Canada. In addition to academic research, he generously supported the arts. He was a patron of opera in Toronto and supported dozens of performing arts groups including the Canadian Opera Company. In recognition of his generous support for the University of Toronto he was a member of the Chancellors’ Circle of Benefactors.


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