Minto Heritage Plaque: Dr. John Gerald FitzGerald
Home of Dr. John Gerald FitzGerald
Canada's Public Health visionary
Dr. John FitzGerald (1882-1940) was born in Drayton, Ontario. In 1891 his family moved to Harriston and occupied 88 John Street South from 1894 to 1902.
In 1914 Dr. FitzGerald personally manufactured the first safe, effective Canadian made rabies vaccine and diphtheria anti-toxin leading to the founding of the Connaught Laboratories as a sell supporting part of the University of Toronto. By 1920, Connaught was distributing a full range of public health products to all provinces for free as a public service. With its mass production of insulin, discovered by Banting and Best in 1922, the Connaught Labs earned an international reputation.
Within a single generation, Dr. FitzGerald's exceptional dedication and foresight led to the control and eradication of many deadly infectious diseases afflicting Canada and the world. Today the original Connaught Laboratories is part of the Paris-based Sanoli Pasteur.
This plaque was made possible through the support of the town of Minto and the Harriston Historical Society.