William Lyon Mackenzie King, PC, OM, CMG, 10th Prime Minister of Canada

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William Lyon MacKenzie King

Birthplace: Berlin, Ontario, Canada
Death: July 22, 1950 (75)
Chelsea, Wright County, Quebec, Canada
Place of Burial: Toronto, Toronto Division, Ontario, Canada
Immediate Family:

Son of John King and Isabel Grace King
Husband of Johanna McMillan
Father of Margaret Alexander Chatfield
Brother of Isabel Christina Grace King; Janet "Jennie" Lindsey Lay and Dougall Macdougall "Max" King

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About William Lyon Mackenzie King, PC, OM, CMG, 10th Prime Minister of Canada



William Lyon Mackenzie King, PC, OM, CMG (December 17, 1874 – July 22, 1950), also commonly known as Mackenzie King, was the dominant Canadian political leader from the 1920s through the 1940s. He served as the tenth Prime Minister of Canada from December 29, 1921 to June 28, 1926; from September 25, 1926 to August 7, 1930; and from October 23, 1935 to November 15, 1948. A Liberal with 22 years in office, he was the longest-serving Prime Minister in Canadian history. Trained in law and social work, he was keenly interested in the human condition (as a boy, his motto was "Help those that cannot help themselves"), and played a major role in laying the foundations of the Canadian welfare state.

Early Life

King was born in Berlin, Ontario (now known as Kitchener) to John King and Isabella Grace Mackenzie. His maternal grandfather was William Lyon Mackenzie, first mayor of Toronto and leader of the Upper Canada Rebellion in 1837. His father was a lawyer, later a professor at Osgoode Hall Law School. King had three siblings. He attended Berlin Central School (now Suddaby Public School) and Berlin High School (now Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate and Vocational School). Tutors were hired to teach him more politics, science, math, English and French. His father was a lawyer with a struggling practice in a small city, and never enjoyed financial security; his parents lived a life of shabby gentility, employing servants and tutors they could scarcely afford. King became a lifelong practising Presbyterian with a dedication to applying Christian virtues to social issues in the style of the Social Gospel. He never favoured socialism.

From Prime Minister of Canada:


  • December 29, 1921 - June 28, 1926
  • September 25, 1926 - August 7, 1930
  • October 23, 1935 - November 15, 1948

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Liberal Party of Canada) is the longest serving Prime Minister in Canadian history having served three terms in office from December 29, 1921, to June 28, 1926, from September 25, 1926, to August 7, 1930, and from October 23, 1935, to November 15, 1948.

Some key accomplishments of his terms include the creation of old age pensions in 1926, unemployment insurance in 1940, family allowances in 1944, and his leadership of Canada through World War II from 1939 to 1945. He also appointed the first woman to the Senate in 1930.

In addition to his several terms as Prime Minister, Mr. King served as Canada's Secretary of State for External Affairs several times between 1921 and 1946. He was Leader of the Opposition in the House of Commons from 1919 to 1921 and in 1926. He was first elected to the House of Commons in 1908 and was a lawyer by profession.

William Lyon Mackenzie King was born in Berlin (now Kitchener), Ontario, on December 17, 1874, and died in Kingsmere, Quebec, on July 22, 1950.

From The Canadian Encyclopedia:

William Lyon Mackenzie King, prime minister of Canada 1921–26, 1926–30 and 1935–48 (born 17 December 1874 in Berlin [Kitchener], ON; died 22 July 1950 in Kingsmere, QC [near Ottawa, ON]). Leader of the Liberal Party 1919-48, and prime minister for almost 22 of those years, King was the dominant political figure in an era of major changes. As Canada’s longest-serving prime minister, King steered Canada through industrialization, much of the Great Depression, and the Second World War. By the time he left office, Canada had achieved greater independence from Britain and a stronger international voice, and had implemented policies such as unemployment insurance in response to industrialization, economic distress, and changing social realities. http://vitacollections.ca/kpl-gsr/2847859/data?n=105

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William Lyon Mackenzie King, PC, OM, CMG, 10th Prime Minister of Canada's Timeline

December 17, 1874
Berlin, Ontario, Canada
April 5, 1897
Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota, United States
July 22, 1950
Age 75
Chelsea, Wright County, Quebec, Canada
Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Toronto, Toronto Division, Ontario, Canada