William Johnston (Canadian politician)

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William George Johnston
Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta
In office
Serving with Perren Baker
Preceded by Nelson Spenser
Succeeded by Charles Pingle
Constituency Medicine Hat
Personal details
Born January 23, 1876
Owen Sound, Ontario
Died June 6, 1925(1925-06-06) (aged 49)
Medicine Hat, Alberta
Political party Dominion Labor
Spouse(s) Alice (1900–1925; his death)[1]
Occupation Locomotive Engineer

William George Johnston (January 23, 1876 – June 6, 1925) was a Canadian provincial level politician from Alberta, Canada. He served as a member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta sitting with the Domion Labor Party caucus from 1921 to his death in 1925.[2]

Early life[edit]

Johnston was born at Owen Sound, Ontario on January 23, 1876[1] to James A. Johnston and Helen A. Clark, both of Scottish descent.[1] He was educated at public schools on Grey County, Ontario.[1] Upon his arrival to the district of Woolchester, Alberta in 1900, he found employment with the Canadian Pacific Railway as a driver of passenger trains.[2] He had also, a number of times, served a representative of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen.[2]

Political career and death[edit]

Johnston ran for a seat to the Alberta Legislature in the electoral district of Medicine Hat as the candidate for the Dominion Labor party in the 1921 Alberta general election. He won the second seat in the four cornered race.[3] Johnston's returns showed a seesaw battle for first place with United Farmers candidate Perren Baker. While attending a Legislative session, Johnston fell ill, and returned to his home where he had become bedridden. As of late, had been experiencing heart problems, and a long illness.[2] He died soon after of the illness in the evening of June 6, 1925.[2][4] His funeral, "one of the largest ever held in Medicine Hat" at the time, was attended by many Alberta cabinet ministers and MLAs.[2] A death notice published several weeks after his death proclaimed him "one of the most popular members of the house."[5] A United Farmers of Alberta publication, published shortly after his death, also referring to Johnston as one of the more popular members, also stated that he was "well known in the rural parts of his constituency as he was in the city, and in the Legislative Assembly, he was an effective and able spokesman of his farmer constituents."[6]


  1. ^ a b c d Chambers, Ernest J.; Normandin, Pierre G. (1922). The Canadian parliamentary guide: Guide parlementaire canadien. P. G. Normandin. p. 509. Retrieved May 31, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "W. G. Johnston Died Saturday at Home". Redcliff Review. June 11, 1925. p. 1. Retrieved May 31, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Medicine Hat Official Results 1921 Alberta general election". Alberta Heritage Community Foundation. Retrieved March 4, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Says Medicine Hat to Have Bye Election". Redcliff Review. August 6, 1925. p. 1. Retrieved May 31, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Death of Alberta Labor Member". Irma Times. June 26, 1925. p. 1. Retrieved May 31, 2011. 
  6. ^ "The U.F.A". Irma Times. June 15, 1925. p. 3. Retrieved May 31, 2011. 

External links[edit]