When William Lyon Mackenzie King retired in 1948, he had held office as Prime Minister of Canada for a total of 7829 days, a longer term of service than that of any other Prime Minister in the history of the British Commonwealth. Like Roosevelt, his contemporary of many momentous years, he was greatly admired and greatly hated, but none dispute the tremendous influence he exerted on the history of his country, or, indeed, his place in world history. In this official biography, great days of Canadian history are given life and meaning, and at the centre of all the events is a phenomenal personality gifted with intelligence, intrepidity, and luck, with amazing insight into his times and the nature of his political occupation.The biography, based largely on sources hitherto unavailable, permits the reader to witness the unfolding of important events as a chief participant himself saw them and to view far-reaching decisions through the eyes of the man who made them, for Mackenzie King speaks in his own words through much of these volumes. They allow us to observe an extraordinarily complex and powerful personality at work.In this first volume, Mackenzie King’s life and political career are traced up to the firm establishment of his first administration as Prime Minister. The forces in is background, education, and early interests which eventually led him into politics are brought out vividly. It is both fascinating and touching, for instance, to observe in letters and personal papers the intimate family relationships which so largely determined what Mackenzie Kind became. Once public service had been chosen, he displayed such talents that a leading role seems almost inevitable to all who knew him.
William Lyon Mackenzie King, Volume 1, 1874-1923 A Political Biography