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Mackenzie Bowell

Description. Lang: en

Sir Mackenzie Bowell  (; December 27, 1823 – December 10, 1917) was a Canadian newspaper publisher and politician, who served as the fifth prime minister of Canada, in office from 1894 to 1896.
Bowell was born in Rickinghall, Suffolk, England. He and his family moved to Belleville, Ontario, in 1832. His mother died two years after their arrival. When in his early teens, Bowell was apprenticed to the printing shop of the local newspaper, the Belleville Intelligencer, and some 15 years later, became its owner and proprietor.
In 1867, following Confederation, he was elected to the House of Commons for the Conservative Party. Bowell entered cabinet in 1878, and would serve under three prime ministers: John A. Macdonald, John Abbott, and John Thompson. He served variously as Minister of Customs (1878–1892), Minister of Militia and Defence (1892), and Minister of Trade and Commerce (1892–1894). Bowell kept his Commons seat continuously for 25 years, through a period of Liberal Party rule in the 1870s. In 1892, Bowell was appointed to the Senate. He became Leader of the Government in the Senate the following year.
In December 1894, Prime Minister Thompson unexpectedly died in office, aged only 49. The Earl of Aberdeen, Canada's governor general, appointed Bowell to replace Thompson as prime minister, due to his status as the most senior cabinet member. The main problem of Bowell's tenure as prime minister was the Manitoba Schools Question. His attempts at compromise alienated members of his own party, and following a Cabinet revolt in early 1896 he was forced to resign in favour of Charles Tupper. Bowell stayed on as a senator until his death at the age of 93, but never again held ministerial office; he served continuously as a Canadian parliamentarian for 50 years.
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