Portrait, Ontario Legislature, Queen’s Park, Toronto

Mackenzie’s portrait hangs to right of the main stairway at Queen’s Park in a place of honour next to the entrance to the Legislative Chamber. The portrait was the work of artist John W.L. Forster and purchased by City Council in 1901. It occasioned some heated debate about the value of spending taxpayers’ money on fine art. The portrait was copied from an 1856 daguerreotype by Eli J. Palmer, one of Toronto’s earliest photographers. Forster added the “list of grievances” to his portrait to remind us that Mackenzie had indeed been a pioneer in the reform movement and leader of the 1837 Rebellion that led to the establishment of responsible government.

Photo Credit: Mel Johnston