Alexander Mackenzie

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Mackenzie, Alexander,

1822–92, Canadian political leader, b. Scotland. Emigrating (1842) to Canada, he worked first as a stonemason in Kingston, Ont., and then as a builder and contractor in Sarnia. In Lambton he became editor (1852) of a Liberal newspaper. Elected (1861) to the Canadian Legislative Assembly, Mackenzie supported the confederation movement and the Liberal leader, George BrownBrown, George,
1818–80, Canadian statesman and journalist, b. Scotland. In 1837 he emigrated to the United States, but after five years in New York City, he settled in Toronto, Ont.
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. A member of the first dominion House of Commons (1867), Mackenzie headed the Liberal opposition to Sir John A. MacdonaldMacdonald, Sir John Alexander,
1815–91, Canadian statesman, first prime minister of the Dominion of Canada, b. Glasgow. His parents settled in 1820 in Kingston, Ont. Macdonald first practiced law.
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's government; upon its fall (1873) as a result of the Pacific scandalPacific scandal,
1873, a major event in Canadian political history. Charges were made in Parliament that the Conservative administration of Sir John A. Macdonald had accepted campaign funds from Sir Hugh Allan in return for a promise to award Allan's syndicate the contract to
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 he became the first Liberal prime minister of the dominion. In 1878, Macdonald came back into power, and Mackenzie, who remained in Parliament until his death, led the Liberal opposition until 1880. During his ministry the courts and provincial governments were strengthened, trade expanded, and immigration, especially to the western provinces, was encouraged.


See his life and times by W. Buckingham and G. W. Ross (1892, repr. 1969).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Mackenzie, Alexander


Born 1764, in Stornoway, Lewis Island, Scotland; died Mar. 12, 1820, near Dunkeld, Scotland. Scotch merchant and traveler; agent for the North West Company, a Canadian fur-trading company.

In 1788, Mackenzie established a trading post on Lake Athabasca. In 1789 he went down the Slave River, explored Great Slave Lake, and discovered the Mackenzie River (from the source to the delta), the Mackenzie Mountains, and the Franklin Mountains. In 1792 and 1793 he traversed North America from the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Queen Charlotte Sound and followed the entire course of the Peace River; he crossed the Rocky Mountains and the Coast Range, discovering between them an interior plateau and the upper course of the Fraser River. In 1793 and 1794, Mackenzie returned eastward along the same route, crossing the continent a second time.


Voyages From Montreal on the River St. Lawrence Through the Continent of North-America … , parts 1-2. London, 1801.


Magidovich, I. P. Istoriia otkrytiia i issledovaniia Severnoi Ameriki. Moscow, 1962.


Mackenzie, Alexander


Born Jan. 28, 1822, in Perthshire, Scotland; died Apr. 17, 1892, in Toronto. Canadian statesman.

Beginning in 1842, Mackenzie lived in Canada, and in 1867 he was elected to the House of Commons there. He was the leader of the Liberal Party in the 1870’s. From November 1873 to October 1878 he served as prime minister of the first Liberal government of Canada, holding at the same time the post of minister of public works. The Mackenzie government conducted a policy of free trade.


Thomson, D. C. Alexander Mackenzie: Clear Grit. Toronto, 1960.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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