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Description found in Archives

John Turner fonds [multiple media]. 



Place of creation

No place, unknown, or undetermined

281.85 m of textual records. 4 film reels (1 hr., 10 min). 4 video reels and 222 videocassettes (122 hrs). 840 audio cassettes and 15 audio reels (ca. 516 hrs). 1 audio disc (11 min., 55s).

Scope and content

Fonds consist of files and correspondence, n.d. and 1954-1993, relating to Northern Affairs, Transport, Registrar General, Consumer and Corporate Affairs, Justice, Finance, the Prime Minister's Office, the Office of the Leader of the Opposition, leadership and election campaigns, constituency issues, speeches, scheduling, and Mr. Turner's personal and parliamentary interests.

Moving images (film)
10: Closed
Sound recordings
10: Closed
Archival reference no.
Former archival reference no.

Textual records: Finding aid no. 2018 consists of file lists of the series in the fonds. MSS2018 90 (Electronic)

Biography / Administrative history

John Napier Turner was born in Richmond, England, 7 June 1929, the son of Leonard and Phyllis Gregory Turner. After the death of Leonard Turner, Phyllis Turner brought her family back to her home in Canada in 1932. John Turner attended school in Ottawa, then moved west with his mother and step-father, Frank Mackenzie Ross. John Turner graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1949, then went to Oxford as a Rhodes scholar, and also studied at the University of Paris. He then joined a Quebec law firm, and qualified as a lawyer in Quebec in 1954. He married Geills Kilgour in 1963.

He was first elected to the House of Commons in 1962, as a Liberal in the riding of St. Lawrence-St. George, and was re-elected in 1963 and 1965. He served as parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources, Arthur Laing, 1963-1965. In December 1965 he was appointed Minister without Portfolio with responsibility for Transport. In April 1967 he became Registrar General, and in December 1967 he became Canada's first Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs. In April 1968 he was also appointed Solicitor General.

When Prime Minister Pearson announced his intention to retire, John Turner was one of the candidates to succeed him as leader of the Liberal Party. At the convention held in April 1968, Pierre Elliott Trudeau won the leadership. In the federal election of 25 June 1968, Turner was elected in the riding of Ottawa-Carleton, where he was also re-elected in 1972 and 1974.

In July 1968, Turner became Minister of Justice. In January 1972 he became Minister of Finance, a position which he held until he resigned in September 1975. In 1976 he returned to private life, working in the Toronto law firm of McMillan, Binch.

After Trudeau announced his intention to retire, John Turner was elected leader of the Liberal Party and he became Prime Minister on 30 June 1984. In the federal election of 4 September 1984, the Conservatives under Brian Mulroney won a large majority. Turner, who was elected in the riding of Vancouver Quadra, became Leader of the Opposition. He held this position until he resigned in 1990. He then returned to the practice of law, in the Toronto firm of Miller, Thomson. He retained his seat in the House of Commons until the election of 1993.

Additional information

Donated by the Rt. Hon. John Turner in May and September 1994.


Other system control no.

Related control no.

1. 1990-0450 MISA
2. 1990-0451 MISA
3. 1990-0452 MISA
4. 1990-291 DAP
5. 1990-514 DAP
6. 1995-0223 MISA
7. 1996-0013 MISA
8. 1996-0029 MISA
9. 1996/0099 MSS
10. 1996-012 DAP
11. 1996-092 DAP
12. 1996-158 DAP
13. 1997-376 DAP
14. 2004-0049 VSA
15. 118-060234-X
16. 118-060235-8
17. 118-060236-6
18. 118-080098-2
19. 118-080204-7
20. 122-020094-8
21. 123-020005-3
22. 123-040472-4
23. 1996-03021-3
24. 2004-00213-1
25. MG26-Q7-1