Paul Martin Sr.

Joseph James Guillaume Paul Martin,[1][2] PC CC QC (June 23, 1903 September 14, 1992), often referred to as Paul Martin, Sr, was a noted Canadian politician and diplomat. He was the father of Paul Martin, who served as 21st Prime Minister of Canada from 2003 to 2006.

Paul Martin

12th Secretary of State for External Affairs
In office
April 22, 1963  April 19, 1968
Prime MinisterLester Pearson
Preceded byHoward Charles Green
Succeeded byMitchell Sharp
Member of the Canadian Parliament
for Essex East
In office
October 14, 1935  April 19, 1968
Preceded byRaymond Morand
Succeeded byRiding abolished
Senator for Windsor-Walkerville, Ontario
In office
April 20, 1968  October 30, 1974
Appointed byPierre Trudeau
Personal details
Joseph James Guillaume Paul Martin

(1903-06-23)June 23, 1903
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
DiedSeptember 14, 1992(1992-09-14) (aged 89)
Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Political partyLiberal
Eleanor Alice "Nelly" Adams (m. 1937)
Children2, including Paul Martin
Alma materUniversity of Toronto
Osgoode Hall Law School
Graduate Institute of International Studies
OccupationDiplomat, lecturer, barrister, lawyer

Early life

Martin was born in Ottawa, Ontario, the son of Lumina (née Chouinard) and Joseph Philippe Ernest Martin.[1] His Irish Catholic paternal grandfather's family immigrated from County Mayo, and his mother and paternal grandmother were French Canadian with deep roots in the country.[1][3]

Martin contracted polio in 1907.[4] Martin was raised in Pembroke, Ontario, in the Ottawa River Valley, although he attended high school at Collège Saint-Alexandre in Gatineau, Quebec. He completed his university education at the University of Toronto, and earned his law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School. Later, Martin studied at the Graduate Institute of International Studies, Geneva, on a scholarship.

Martin later opened a law practice in Windsor, Ontario.



A member of the Liberal Party of Canada, he was first elected to the House of Commons in 1935 and entered the cabinet in 1945. He went on to serve as a noted member of the cabinets of four Prime Ministers: William Lyon Mackenzie King, Louis St. Laurent, Lester B. Pearson and Pierre Trudeau.

Martin was viewed as one of the most left-wing members of the Liberal cabinet, and as Minister of National Health and Welfare from 1946 to 1957 he played an important role in the fight against polio and overseeing the creation of hospital insurance in Canada, and is sometimes recognized as a father of medicare. Martin served as Secretary of State for External Affairs in the Pearson government, and was instrumental in the acquisition of U.S. nuclear weapons for Canadian Forces.[5]

Liberal leadership bids

He ran for the Liberal leadership three times, in 1948, in 1958 and 1968, but was defeated at all three Liberal leadership conventions, first by Louis St. Laurent, then by Lester B. Pearson, then by Pierre Trudeau.

Senator and beyond

Trudeau appointed him to the Senate in 1968. He served as Leader of the Government in the Senate until 1974 when he was appointed High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. He also served as Chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University from 1972–1977, as a result of which the university named the Paul Martin Centre in his honour. Until his death Paul Martin was an Adjunct Professor of Political Science at the University of Windsor.

His two volume memoirs, A Very Public Life, was published in 1983 (ISBN 0888790929) and 1986 (OCLC 165756245 A very public life: So many worlds Volume 2 of A very public life at Google Books).


In 1976 he was made a Companion of the Order of Canada. In recognition of his accomplishments, Martin was granted the right to use the honorific Right Honourable in 1992, a rare honour for one who has never been Prime Minister, Governor-General or Chief Justice of Canada.

The University of Windsor has a Paul Martin Chair in law and political science, recently held by former Manitoba Premier Howard Pawley (until his retirement from the university), and the Paul Martin Law Library. The City of Windsor had also renamed their "Post Office Building" the Paul Martin Sr. Building in his honour on November 18, 1994.

Honorary Degrees

Electoral record

Essex East
1935 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Paul7,56239.25-4.31
ConservativeMORAND, Hon. Raymond D.6,49333.71-22.73
Co-operative CommonwealthLEVERT, Joseph Ben4,10621.32
ReconstructionMCPHARLIN, J. Gabriel1,1025.72
Total valid votes 19,263100.00
1940 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Paul9,81146.39+7.14
National GovernmentMORAND, Hon. Raymond D.8,06038.11+4.40
Co-operative CommonwealthLEVERT, Joseph Ben2,87913.62-7.70
     Canadian Labour HICKS, Roy Robert 398 1.88
Total valid votes 21,148100.00
1945 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul16,16556.21+9.82
Progressive ConservativeBYRNE, James E.8,24428.67-9.44
Co-operative CommonwealthMACDONALD, William C.4,34915.12+1.50
Total valid votes 28,758100.00
1949 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul16,70952.89-3.32
Progressive ConservativeTURNBULL, James Russell8,20425.97-2.70
Co-operative CommonwealthRIGGS, William Charles5,21316.50+1.38
Labor–ProgressivePRINCE, Cyril1,4644.64
Total valid votes 31,590100.00
1953 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul19,94667.16+14.27
Progressive ConservativeKENNEDY, Aloysius5,53018.62-7.35
Co-operative CommonwealthOWEN, Kenneth Edwin3,01310.14-6.36
Labor–ProgressiveKENNEDY, Michael J.1,2124.08-0.56
Total valid votes 29,701100.00
1957 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul22,02357.15-10.01
Progressive ConservativeHICKS, Roy R.10,59327.49+8.87
Co-operative CommonwealthMETEER, Jack5,91715.36+5.22
Total valid votes 38,533100.00
1958 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul18,07441.98-15.17
Progressive ConservativeHICKS, Roy R.16,45138.21+10.72
Co-operative CommonwealthBURR, Fred A.8,53019.81+4.45
Total valid votes 43,055100.00
1962 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul24,96958.69+16.71
New DemocraticDRURY, George8,88820.89+1.08
Progressive ConservativeDEMERS, Roland Lionel8,21019.30-18.91
Social CreditCORY, T.R.4761.12
Total valid votes 42,543100.00
1963 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul25,72759.82+1.13
Progressive ConservativeGOURLIE, David8,89420.68+1.38
New DemocraticMCCONVILLE, Hugh7,64817.78-3.11
Social CreditGIGNAC, Frank7401.72+0.60
Total valid votes 43,009100.00
1965 Canadian federal election
Party Candidate Votes%±%
LiberalMARTIN, Hon. Paul26,09463.78+3.96
Progressive ConservativeGOURLIE, David8,14219.90-0.78
New DemocraticMCCONVILLE, Hugh6,13314.99-2.79
CommunistMAGNUSON, Bruce A.H.5431.33
Total valid votes 40,912100.00

See also


  1. Martin, Paul (1983). A Very Public Life: Far from home. Deneau. p. 2. ISBN 0-88879-092-9.
  2. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2019-02-01.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-11-07. Retrieved 2009-11-05.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. Disabled World
  5. Clearwater, J. "Canadian Nuclear Weapons.", Chapter 1. Dundurn Press, 1998.

Further reading

  • Donaghy, Greg. Grit: The Life and Politics of Paul Martin Sr. (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2015). Pp. 480
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.