The lives of the movers and shakers of Cobourg helps in understanding how things happen and were made to happen. See also:

Cobourg’s Father of Confederation

In 1848, the parliament of West Canada (formerly Upper Canada) was established and Cobourg was then part of the Riding of West Northumberland. Accepting the nomination of 350 petitioners, James Cockburn was elected into this Parliament in 1861.

Thus began a successful political career for a man of tact and courtesy who would provide a steadying influence in the turbulent years of Canada’s birth.