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Alexander Mackenzie

Alexander Mackenzie
Rank:2nd (1873-1878)
Date of Birth:January 28, 1822
Place of Birth:Logierait, Scotland
Spouses:Helen Neil, Jane Sym
Political Party:Liberal Party of Canada

Alexander Mackenzie (January 28, 1822 - April 17, 1892) was the second Prime Minister of Canada from November 7, 1873 to October 8, 1878.

He was born in Logierait, Scotland. He emigrated to Canada in 1842 after completing an education in public schools at Perth, Moulin, and Dunkeld, Scotland. Mackenzie married Helen Neil (1826-1852) in 1845 and with her had three children, with only one girl surviving infancy. In 1853 he married Jane Sym (1825-1893).

He led the Liberal Party of Canada from 1873-1880 and became Prime Minister of Canada in 1873, ousting John A Macdonald from power largely because of the damage done to Macdonald's Conservative party when the Pacific scandal occurred. He remained Prime Minister until 1878, when the Conservatives came back into power.

As Prime Minister, Alexander Mackenzie strove to reform and simplify the machinery of government. He introduced the secret ballot; created the Supreme Court of Canada; established the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario in 1874; created the Office of the Auditor General in 1878; and struggled to launch the national railway.

At the time, it was customary for the British monarch to knight all Canadian Prime Ministers. But Scottish memories run deep and Alexander Mackenzie declined all offers of a British knighthood.

He died in Toronto, Ontario and is buried in the Lakeview Cemetery, Sarnia, Ontario.

Preceded by:
John A. Macdonald
Prime Minister of Canada Followed by:
John A. Macdonald

Sir Alexander Mackenzie was an explorer and an employee of the Hudson's Bay Company. See Alexander Mackenzie (explorer).

Another Alexander Mackenzie was a Scottish violinist, conductor, composer and head of the Royal Academy of Music in London from 1888 to 1924. See Alexander Mackenzie (musician).