James De Mille

A writer, bookseller, and professor, James De Mille was born in Saint John, NB on 23 August 1833. Well educated and widely travelled, he was, for a brief period, a citizen of cultural repute in Saint John when his bookstore became a gathering place for artists and writers in that city. When the store’s profits didn’t materialize, he moved to Nova Scotia where he taught at Acadia and then for a long career at Dalhousie University. It was at these universities that he became a prolific and popular writer, the focus of his work touching romance, mystery, travel, adventure, fantasy, and science fiction. It is for the latter of these popular genres that he is best known, his posthumously released A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder (1888) still in print today. The novel has been subject to much critical attention for being a very early Canadian example of a form of utopian fantasy that is deeply satirical of conventional politics and society. In that regard, De Mille is a literary descendent of the great Irish satirist Jonathan Swift.

For the full Author Page on De Mille, click here.


The linked Author Page contains the poem "Sweet Maiden of Quoddy."