William Lyon Mackenzie King

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William Lyon Mackenzie King

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William Lyon Mackenzie King, Prime Minister of Canada (1921-1925, 1926-1930, and 1935-1948), was born in Berlin (now Kitchener), Ontario, on December 17, 1874, the son of John King and the grandson of William Lyon Mackenzie. He was educated at the University of Toronto (B.A., 1895; M.A., 1897) and did post-graduate work in sociology at Harvard University (M.A. 1898; Ph.D. 1909). In 1900 he was invited by Sir William Mulock to become Canada's first Deputy Minister of Labour; and in 1909 he was persuaded by Sir Wilfrid Laurier to enter politics, was elected to represent Waterloo in the Canadian House of Commons, and became Canada's first Minister of Labour not holding a separate portfolio. In 1919 he was chosen to succeed Laurier as leader of the Liberal party; and in 1921 he was elected to represent North York in the House of Commons, and became Prime Minister of Canada and Minister for External Affairs. When King retired in 1948, he had held office longer than any previous prime minister in the British Commonwealth. He died, unmarried, near Ottawa, Ontario, on July 22, 1950. (taken from "The Macmillan Dictionary of Canadian Biography" fourth edition. 1978.)

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