Canada's first prime minister was born on January 11, 1815 in Glasgow, Scotland. As a small child, he emigrated with his parents to Upper Canada (now Ontario). Trained as a lawyer, he made a spectacular career for himself in politics.
Macdonald was a true visionary. His vision helped create the Canadian Confederation of 1867 and then pushed it westwards across the continent with the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
Of course, he had his foibles. A weakness for drink. The occasional brawl in the House of Commons. Some pocket-lining from CPR kickbacks.
But hey, Canadians love a bit of a bad boy. So happy birthday, Sir John A.!
[Cartoon by Brian Gable of The Globe and Mail]