Governors-General
of Canada

"This appointed office is one of the most prestigious in Canada, for while it has no political implication and is highly ceremonial, it possesses broad discretionary powers that may on occasion be used. Having the power to dismiss a government for unconstitutional action, the office of the Governor-General is the ultimate safeguard of the constitution. Since 1867 the appointee has been designated by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister for a period of usually five years. Until 1926 the Governor-General was both the representative of the sovereign and an agent of the British Government. Now, however, the Governor-General is host to visiting heads of state, presides at the opening of Parliament, and signs Parliamentary bills and state documents. On May 14, 1984, Jeanne Sauvé was appointed the twenty-third Governor-General of Canada, the first woman to hold that position." (Canadian Farmers' Almanac)


There have been twenty-five (25) Governors-General in Canada since Confederation in 1867:

1867-1869 Sir Charles Stanley, Viscount Monck
1869-1872 Sir John Young, Baron Lisgar
1872-1878 Frederick Temple Hamilton Blackwood, Earl of Dufferin
1878-1883 John Douglas Sutherland Campbell, Marquess of Lorne
1883-1888 Henry Charles Keith Petty-Fitzmaurice, Marquess of Lansdowne
1888-1893 Frederick Arthur Stanley, Baron Stanley of Preston
1893-1898 John Campbell Hamilton-Gordon, Earl of Aberdeen
1898-1904 Gilbert John Elliot Murray-Kynynmound, Earl of Minto
1904-1911 Albert Henry George Grey, Earl of Grey
1911-1916 Prince Arthur, Field Marshall Duke of Connaught
1916-1921 Victor Christian William Cavendish, Duke of Devonshire
1921-1926 Julian Byng, General Baron Byng of Vimy and of Thorpe
1926-1931 Freeman Freeman-Thomas, Baron Willingdon of Ratton
1931-1935 Vere Brabazon Ponsonby, Earl of Bessborough
1935-1940 John Buchan, Baron Tweedsmuir
1940-1946 Alexander George Cambridge, Major General Earl of Athlone
1946-1952 Sir Harold George Alexander, Field Marshall Viscount Alexander of Tunis
1952-1959 The Right Honourable Vincent Massey*
1959-1967 General The Right Honourable Georges P. Vanier
1967-1973 The Right Honourable Roland Michener
1973-1979 The Right Honourable Jules Léger
1979-1983 The Right Honourable Edward Richard Schreyer
1984-1990 The Right Honourable Jeanne Sauvé
1990-1994 The Right Honourable Ramon John Hnatyshyn
1994-1999 The Right Honourable Romeo LeBlanc
1999-____ The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson

*Brother of actor Raymond Massey

Canadiana