The Lost Prime Ministers - Dundurn

The Lost Prime Ministers

Macdonald's Successors Abbott, Thompson, Bowell, and Tupper

Published February 2022


After John A. Macdonald’s death, four Tory prime ministers — each remarkable but all little known — rose to power and fell in just five years.

From 1891 to 1896, between John A. Macdonald’s and Wilfrid Laurier’s tenures, four lesser-known men took on the mantle of leadership. Tory prime ministers John Abbott, John Thompson, Mackenzie Bowell, and Charles Tupper headed the government of Canada in rapid succession. Each came to the job with qualifications and limitations, and each left after unexpectedly short terms. Yet these reluctant prime ministers are an important part of our political legacy. Their roles were much more than caretakers between the administrations of two great leaders. Personal tragedy, terrible health issues, backstabbing, and political manipulation all led to their eventual downfalls. The Lost Prime Ministers is the dramatic saga of these overlooked Canadian leaders.



Michael Hill

Michael Hill is the author of The Mariposa Folk Festival: A History. A former history teacher, he was also Mariposa’s artistic director and has written for a number of newspapers and magazines, including a weekly column in the Toronto Star. He lives in Orillia, Ontario.

Book Details

February 2022
6x9 in
280 pp
February 2022
280 pp
February 2022
280 pp