Dr. William Norrie Robertson was born on the 18th of February, 1858 in Downie Twp, Perth County, Ontario. His parents William Robertson and the former Jessie Webster Norrie were born and raised in Scotland. They married and had 2 children, George and Susan, before immigrating to Canada. They settled in Perth County and had 3 more children, Margaret, Dr. Robertson and another son named Alexander.
Dr. Roberton graduated from Pickering College and then he took a teaching position in Collingwood Twp, (Grey County) Ontario, prior to attending medical school. Dr. Robertson graduated from Trinity Medical College in 1884. He took post-graduate courses in Edinburgh, Scotland. He became a ship’s surgeon onboard a ship that travelled between Liverpool, England to Bombay, India.
According to the 1891 census, Dr. Robertson was living and practicing medicine in Stratford, Ontario. Dr. Robertson married Jane Anne Monteith on the 30th of March, 1892 in Downie Twp., Perth County. She was born on the 21st of March, 1858 in Downie Twp, the daughter of Samuel Monteith and the former Annie Jane Nelson. She was the 5th of 6 children and her siblings were Elizabeth, Francis, John (who died in early childhood), Margaret (who died in early childhood) and Samuel.
Dr. and Mrs. Robertson had a son, William Nelson Robertson born in 1895. Dr. Robertson was known to be practising medicine in Wallaceburg in 1897. While living in Wallaceburg, Dr. and Mrs. Robertson had another son, Albert Norrie Monteith Robertson born on the 26th of April, 1897. Sadly, Albert died on the 11th of March, 1899 in Stratford. He was buried at Avondale Cemetery in Stratford.
Dr. Robertson travelled to the Yukon during the gold rush and published a book in later years entitled, “Yukon Memories: Sourdough Tales of Chaos and Changes in the Klondike”. It captures his memories of his time in the Yukon between 1898 – 1899. Dr. Robertson was an avid cyclist and held a number of Canadian cycling records. In his obituary in the Canadian Medical Journal (April 1934), it mentions that, “He held the 100 mile road record having covered the distance in 5 hours and 50 minutes; and the 24-hour record of 255.5 on the road, and the Toronto-Sarnia record of 209 miles in 18 hours and 20 minutes.” Dr. Robertson published a book in 1894 called “Cycling”; extolling the health benefits of riding a bicycle.
In 1901, Dr. and Mrs. Robertson and their son William were living in Stratford. In 1911, Dr. Robertson was the Medical Officer for the northern section of the Canadian Northern Railway. Dr. and Mrs. Robertson and William were listed on the Algoma East census.
Dr. Robertson died on the 19th of February, 1934 at St. Michaels Hospital in Toronto. Mrs. Robertson died on the 29th of November, 1936. At the time of her death, she resided with her son at 124 Hiawatha Road in Toronto. Dr. and Mrs. Robertson are buried at Avondale Cemetery in Stratford.
*His son William Nelson Robertson became a lawyer and he died in 1958. He is also buried at Avondale Cemetery.