William Cobbett (1763–1835) and family arrived in Halifax, fleeing from the United States en route to England. He had served with the 54th Regiment of Foot in New Brunswick, became a popular writer (author of The Soldier’s Friend in 1792), and was an early witness to the French Revolution. But he had also become a controversial political and pro-British pamphleteer and commentator in the United States. He had been charged there with defamation by Dr. Benjamin Rush, an eminent physician, and now was in flight. Back in Britain, he became a publisher and a strong voice for parliamentary reform.(Painting: Halifax from George’s Island, as portrayed by G.I. Parkyns in 1801, just after the time William Cobbett visited the town. From Halifax: The First 250 Years, Judith
Fingard, Janet Guildford, and David Sutherland.)