September 21, 1911
Robert Borden’s Conservatives win the general election with 51.2% of the vote. Wilfrid Laurier is out after 15 years in power.
Borden will be prime minister of Canada until 1920. During his first mandate, he will face challenges brought about by the start of the First World War in 1914.
The Centre Block of Parliament will burn down in February 1916. Borden will escape, slightly burned and in just a shirt, leaving his office and all of its contents in flames.
After the end of the First World War in 1918, Borden will insist that Canada send an independent delegation to the Paris Peace Conference, and he will help to establish the League of Nations (now the United Nations).
In 1920, Borden will resign as prime minister for health reasons. Retirement will be rewarding: he will take care of his business interests, give lectures and write until his death in 1937.
To learn more:
Library and Archives Canada
Parliament of Canada
Bank of Canada
Photo of Prime Minister Borden and Sir Winston Churchill leaving the Admiralty, London, 1912.