Power, Charles Gavan
Charles Gavan Power, "Chubby," lawyer, politician (b at Sillery, Qué 18 Jan 1888; d at Québec C 30 May 1968). Power was seriously wounded in WWI and won the Military Cross for gallantry. He denounced military "brass hats" ever after. He was MP for Québec South (his father's seat) 1917-55, when he went to the Senate. The popular MP was brought into Mackenzie KING's
government - despite the PM's legitimate doubts about Power's temperance - on the advice of Ernest LAPOINTE
. Power was minister of pensions and national health 1935-39, and postmaster general 1939-40, but his greatest contribution came as minister of national defence for air, 1940-44, when he fought to promote the interests of RCAF personnel serving under British command and to create Canadian squadrons in northwestern Europe. Blunt and emotional, he opposed CONSCRIPTION
for service abroad and therefore resigned from the Cabinet in 1944. His memoir, A Party Politician
(1966), is among the best of those written by a Canadian politician.
Links to Other Sites
The Memory Project: Conscription
Listen to an interview with Canadian veteran Jacques Catudal who recounts his experience with conscription during the Second World War. Also check out related interviews and digitized artefacts and memorabilia at this extensive website from the Historica-Dominion Institute.