Ever heard of William H. Hearst? If you haven’t, take the time to watch our interview with Matthew Shoemaker, a city councillor from Sault Ste. Marie, which Hearst represented in the Ontario Legislature from 1908-19.
Shoemaker is on a bit of a crusade to boost Hearst’s profile, given his significant contributions to this province. Women finally gained the right to vote and run for office through legislation passed by his government. Niagara Falls produces massive amounts of electricity to this day because his government put roughly 10,000 people to work there building what was then the world’s biggest hydroelectric power station and the largest engineering project since the Panama Canal.
Despite all his achievements, Hearst’s time as Ontario’s seventh premier was relatively short — just over five years. He was the victim of one of the most improbable upsets in history, defeated by a party that doesn’t even exist anymore. But that shouldn’t be the last thing you learn about him.
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