Quit Rent

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Dates of ceremonies: 1830-1860s, 1942-1969, 1979, 1980

UNB President Albert Trueman paying quit rent to Lieutenant Governor David MacLaren in Memorial Hall, [between 1948-1953]. UA PC 9a no.25 (b).

Origins: The ceremony of Quit Rent dates back to the original land grant by the Crown to the university in 1785 when approximately 6000 acres of land were leased with an annual quit rent to be paid to the King, followed by the first land grant to the College of New Brunswick in 1800, which declared the "yielding and paying therefore...a free yearly Quit Rent of one farthing for every hundred acres hereby granted...and so to continue payable yearly thereafter forever." The commemoration of the right granted to the university by the Crown during the War of 1812 to operate a ferry on the Saint John River between Fredericton and Barker's Point was also observed.

History: The ceremony, as part of the annual Founders' Day celebrations, fell out of favour in the 1860s only to be revived again in 1942 upon recommendation by UNB students. Founders' Day was observed until 1969, when campus strife over the Strax Affair forced the cancellation of the ceremony. The Quit Rent ceremony, as part of Founders' Day, was performed again in 1979 in honour of the one-hundredth anniversary of Lord Beaverbrook's birth, and finally in 1980 at the inauguration of the W. Stewart MacNutt Memorial Lecture Series.


  • UNB Scrapbooks (UA RG 100), January - November 1946.
  • Montague, Susan. A Pictorial History of the University of New Brunswick. Fredericton: University of New Brunswick, 1992, p. 15, 19, 159.
  • UNB Scrapbooks (UA RG 100), 1944-1945.
  • UNB Scrapbooks (UA RG 100), [1936] - 1943.
  • UNB Scrapbooks (UA RG 100), September - October 1979.
  • UA Case 128; Section 2; File 1.

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