Carleton, Sir Guy (1724–1808), a British general and governor of Canada. He was born in Ireland and entered the British army at an early age. Carleton was with General James Wolfe at the capture of Quebec from the French in 1759. From 1768 to 1778 he was governor of Quebec.
During the Revolutionary War, Carleton saved Canada from conquest by the Americans (1775–76). He served as commander of the British forces in North America, 1782–83, supervising the evacuation of British troops to England at the war's end. He was created Baron Dorchester in 1786 and returned to Canada, where he was governor, 1786–91 and 1793–96.
Carleton was a humane and just governor. His policy of fair treatment of the French Canadians was reflected in the Quebec Act (1774), which set up the government of Canada . He also helped write the Constitutional Act of 1791. By this act Canada became two provinces, Upper and Lower Canada, and was given, for the first time, a measure of self-government.