Norman McLeod Rogers

Norman McLeod Rogers, PC[1] (July 25, 1894 June 10, 1940) was a Canadian lawyer and statesman. He served as the member of parliament for Kingston, Ontario, Canada and as a cabinet minister in the government of Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King. He was also an early biographer of King.

The Honourable

Norman McLeod Rogers

Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Kingston City
In office
Preceded byArthur Edward Ross
Succeeded byAngus Lewis Macdonald
Personal details
Born(1894-07-25)July 25, 1894
Amherst, Nova Scotia, Canada
DiedJune 10, 1940(1940-06-10) (aged 45)
near Newtonville, Ontario, Canada
Political partyLiberal
CabinetMinister of Labour (1935-1939)
Minister of National Defence (1939–1940)

Rogers was born in Amherst, Nova Scotia and served in the military during World War I. He was educated at Acadia University and in 1919 he was elected a Rhodes Scholar. He went to University College, Oxford (University of Oxford), where he was awarded a BA Honours (MA) degree in Modern History, the B.Litt., and the BCL.

Rogers was private secretary to King from 1927 to 1929, then worked as a professor at Queen's University in Kingston. He was elected to the Parliament in 1935, and served under King as Minister of Labour until 1939, and then Minister of National Defence from 1939 until his death in 1940.

Rogers died in a plane crash on June 10, 1940 near Newtonville, Ontario, while en route from Ottawa to Toronto for a speaking engagement. On the day National Defence Minister Rogers died, Canada declared war on Italy.[2]

Prime Minister King took the death of Rogers extremely hard. Rogers was a key Cabinet minister, and close advisor, and Canada was in the midst of World War II. The two men were friendly on a personal basis, and King may have been grooming Rogers to become his successor as prime minister.[3]

Kingston/Norman Rogers Airport is named in his honour, as is a street in Kingston. A Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker was named after him; it has since been sold to Chile and renamed Contraalmirante Oscar Viel Toro.


  • W. A. M., 'Obituary: Norman McLeod Rogers, 1894-1940', Canadian Journal of Economics and Political Science/Revue canadienne d'Economique et de Science politique, vol. 6, no. 3 (August, 1940), pp. 476–478


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