Henry Bird

Henry Bird

Justice Henry Irvine Bird was Commissioner for the Japanese Property Claims Commission (the Bird Commission), from 1947 to 1950.
Justice Bird was born in Cobourg, Ontario in 1892. He attended Upper Canada College and Osgoode Hall Law School. Before completing his law degree, however, Justice Bird served in WWI. He was injured at Ypres in 1915, but survived and received an officer’s commission and served as an infantry major. Upon his return to Canada, he completed his law degree, and then moved to Vancouver to article at his uncle’s firm, McNeill & Bird. Justice Bird was called to the bar of British Columbia in 1919 and practiced law in Vancouver until his appointment to the BC Supreme Court in 1942. By 1944, the Federal government moved him up to the Court of Appeal. He remained at the Court of Appeal until his retirement in 1967 at the age of 75. In 1964, he became the Chief Justice of the province of British Columbia.


Regularized NameHenry Bird


Oral Histories (1)
Other Archival Files (52)


Readers of these historical materials will encounter derogatory references to Japanese Canadians and euphemisms used to obscure the intent and impacts of the internment and dispossession. While these are important realities of the history, the Landscapes of Injustice Research Collective urges users to carefully consider their own terminological choices in writing and speaking about this topic today as we confront past injustice. See our statement on terminology, and related sources here.