Daily Almanac for Wednesday, December 21, 2022

On this date in 1894, Mackenzie Bowell became Canada’s 5th Prime Minister. Here is Mackenzie Bowell in 1891. By William James Topley – Image from Library and Archives Canada., Public Domain, https commons.wikimedia.org


Sir Mackenzie Bowell PC KCMG (/ˈboʊ.əl/; December 27, 1823 – December 10, 1917) was a Canadian newspaper publisher and politician, who served as the fifth prime minister of Canada, in office from 1894 to 1896.

Bowell was born in Rickinghall, Suffolk, England. He and his family moved to Belleville, Ontario, in 1832. When in his early teens, Bowell was apprenticed to the printing shop of the local newspaper, the Belleville Intelligencer, and some 15 years later, became its owner and proprietor.

In 1867, following Confederation, he was elected to the House of Commons for the Conservative Party. Bowell entered cabinet in 1878, and would serve under three prime ministers: John A. MacdonaldJohn Abbott, and John Thompson. He served variously as Minister of Customs (1878–1892), Minister of Militia and Defence (1892), and Minister of Trade and Commerce (1892–1894). Bowell kept his Commons seat continuously for 25 years, through a period of Liberal Party rule in the 1870s. In 1892, Bowell was appointed to the Senate. He became Leader of the Government in the Senate the following year.

In December 1894, Prime Minister Thompson unexpectedly died in office. The Earl of Aberdeen, Canada’s governor general, appointed Bowell to replace Thompson as prime minister, due to his status as the most senior cabinet member. The main problem of Bowell’s tenure as prime minister was the Manitoba Schools Question. His attempts at compromise alienated members of his own party, and following a Cabinet revolt in early 1896 he was forced to resign in favour of Charles Tupper. Bowell stayed on as a senator until his death at the age of 93, but never again held ministerial office; he served continuously as a Canadian parliamentarian for 50 years.


Winter Solstice

The winter solstice is one of the two times each year that the Sun is at its farthest point from the equator and appears to stand still. The word solstice is derived from the Latin sol, or “Sun,” and stitium, or “stoppage.”

The Halcyon Days also occur around this time. According to ancient legend, a grieving wife named Halcyon threw herself into the sea upon discovering the drowned body of her beloved husband, Ceyx. The gods took pity on the pair, transforming them into kingfishers, or halcyons, with the power to still the stormy seas for 14 days near the time of the winter solstice while they hatched their young.”

Learn more about the winter solstice and the first day of winter!

Question of the Day

Is there anything I can do to stop the stairs in my house from squeaking?

There is. Find the offending step (or steps) and sprinkle some talcum powder into the noisy joint between the tread and the riser. For a more permanent solution, if you can get at the back of your stairs, you can repair them by driving nails from underneath through the riser and into the tread at an angle; this will make them hold better.

Advice of the Day

To defeat sleepless nights, try as hard as possible to stay awake; you’ll soon be asleep.

Home Hint of the Day

If you’re nailing into knotty or tough wood, first make a pilot hole. Drill a hole slightly smaller in diameter than the nail before inserting and hammering it in.

Word of the Day


The fear of fog or clouds

Puzzle of the Day

When a person falls out a window, what does he always fall against?

Against his will


  • Giovanni Boccaccio (poet) – 1375
  • Marc Connelly (playwright) – 1980


  • Jane Fonda (actress) – 1937
  • Samuel L. Jackson (actor) – 1948
  • Ray Romano (comedian & actor) – 1957
  • Kiefer Sutherland (actor) – 1966


  • Mackenzie Bowell became Canada’s 5th Prime Minister– 1894
  • The first crossword puzzle was printed in a NY newspaper– 1913
  • Pianist Vladimir Horowitz wed Wanda Toscanini– 1933
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiered at the Carthay Circle Theater in Hollywood, California. It was the first animated feature-length film with sound and color– 1937


  • A four-day snowstorm began in Portland, Oregon– 1892
  • A storm in Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana brought 26 inches of snow to Hillsboro, Texas– 1929
(courtesy cliparting inc)

COURTESY www.almanac.com


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