George Gooderham, William’s son, was a brilliant financier and became one of the major benefactors of Toronto. By the time of his death, succession duties on his estate paid off Ontario’s debt.
He was President of the Bank of Toronto, was one of the founders of Manufacturer’s Life Company, supported the work of Toronto General Hospital, was a benefactor of the Toronto College of Music, and the University of Toronto and he built the Gooderham building, his home at St. George and Bloor St. and the King Edward Hotel.
“His last and grandest gesture was unprecedented and, in its impact, will likely never be surpassed.
By the time of his death on May 1, 1905, his personal fortune was estimated at more than $25 million. As The Star reported on May 3, it was then learned that he had never transferred a single share of his stock to anyone with the intention of evading the government’s succession duties. Such an act he considered unconscionable, and especially unworthy of anyone who had made his fortune in an adopted country.
As a result, a vast amount of his wealth now passed to the government and, as The Star recorded, it was large enough to wipe out the province’s debt that year and provide it with an unexpected profit.”
1905 - George Gooderham - a great benefactor
William's son, George Gooderham was not only a brilliant financier but a wonderful benefactor to the city of Toronto. He believed in paying his taxes and gifting anonymously. In this excerpt we blow his anonymity...