Victorious in the election of 1933 during the GREAT DEPRESSION, Macdonald implemented old-age pensions and relief for the unemployed, and launched an inquiry (Jones Commission) into the effects of the tariff on the NS economy. In 1940 Prime Minister KING recruited him to become minister of defence for naval services. Macdonald presided over the creation of a wartime Canadian Navy and convoy service for the Allies. A conscientious administrator, he was a poor politician, putting defence priorities before party considerations in the CONSCRIPTION crisis. King triumphed over the conscriptionists and Macdonald resigned from the Cabinet in April 1945.
He returned to NS and resumed the premiership, resisting the centralizing policies of the King governments but, sapped by overwork and illness, he was unable to restore the spark that had characterized his prewar government. When he died in 1954, Macdonald left a party that had languished too long in his shadow. His personal reputation in the NS Liberal Party was second only to that of Joseph HOWE.
Author MARGARET CONRAD
Links to Other Sites
The Memory Project: Convoy
Listen to interviews with Canadian veterans about their wartime military service. See also related digitized artefacts and memorabilia. From the Historica-Dominion Institute.
Shawnadithit grew anxious waiting for her uncle, Longnon, to return to camp at the junction of Badger Brook and the Exploits River, deep in the wilds of Newfoundland...