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Charles Richmond Mitchell

Charles Richmond Mitchell
Leader of the Official Opposition in Alberta
In office
February 19, 1925 – March 12, 1926
Preceded byJohn Robert Boyle
Succeeded byJohn C. Bowen
Alberta Minister of Health
In office
April 29, 1920 – August 13, 1921
Preceded byAlexander Grant MacKay
Succeeded byRichard Gavin Reid
Alberta Minister of Municipal Affairs
In office
April 29, 1920 – August 13, 1921
Preceded byAlexander Grant MacKay
Succeeded byRichard Gavin Reid
Alberta Provincial Treasurer
In office
November 28, 1913 – August 13, 1921
Preceded byArthur Sifton
Succeeded byHerbert Greenfield
Alberta Minister of Public Works
In office
May 4, 1912 – November 28, 1913
Preceded byArthur Sifton
Succeeded byCharles Stewart
Alberta Minister of Education
In office
June 1, 1910 – May 4, 1912
Preceded byAlexander Cameron Rutherford
Succeeded byJohn Robert Boyle
Attorney-General of Alberta
In office
June 1, 1910 – May 4, 1912
Preceded byCharles Wilson Cross
Succeeded byCharles Wilson Cross
Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta
In office
June 12, 1913 – March 18, 1926
Preceded byGeorge Lane
Succeeded byJoseph Tweed Shaw
ConstituencyBow Valley
In office
June 29, 1910 – April 17, 1913
Preceded byWilliam Thomas Finlay
Succeeded byNelson Spencer
ConstituencyMedicine Hat
Personal details
BornNovember 20, 1872
Newcastle, New Brunswick, Canada
DiedAugust 16, 1942 (aged 69)
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Political partyLiberal
RelationsPeter Mitchell (uncle)
Alma materUniversity of New Brunswick
King's College
ProfessionLawyer

Charles Richmond Mitchell (November 30, 1872 – August 16, 1942) was a Canadian lawyer, judge, cabinet minister and former Leader of the Official Opposition in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta.

Early life

Mitchell was born in Newcastle, New Brunswick. At the time, the Mitchells were a prominent local family: Mitchell's father was the Sheriff of Northumberland County and his uncle was Peter Mitchell, a senator and later Premier of New Brunswick.

He went to the University of New Brunswick and King's College and took the New Brunswick bar exam in 1897. The next year he moved to Medicine Hat, at that time in the Northwest Territories and opened a thriving legal practice. He was appointed as a Judge in 1907 for the Calgary District Court.

Cabinet minister

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Mitchell was first elected in a by-election in Medicine Hat provincial electoral district on June 29, 1910, after he had been appointed to the cabinet by Premier Arthur Lewis Sifton on June 1, 1910.

Mitchell served two cabinet portfolios as the Minister of Education and the Attorney General of the province. He would serve both portfolios for 2 years until he became Minister of Public Works on May 4, 1912, and dropped the others. In the 1913 Alberta general election Mitchell was defeated by Nelson Spencer from the Conservative Party. Mitchell was the only Cabinet minister defeated that election, but that was one of a number of high-profile defeats across the province.

After his defeat in the 1913 general election, George Lane, the Member for Bow Valley, resigned to provide a seat for the defeated Minister. On June 12, 1913, he was acclaimed and once again rejoined the government. He would serve Bow Valley as its Member until his resignation in 1926.

Mitchell was reappointed Cabinet as the Provincial Treasurer on November 28, 1913. He became the first non-premier Treasurer in Alberta history. He held that position until the government was defeated in 1921.

On April 29, 1920, Mitchell was appointed to be Minister of Municipal Affairs, in addition to being the Treasurer.

Defeat of government

Mitchell was one of the few Liberal Party members to survive the defeat of the government in 1921. After the resignation of John R. Boyle to the judiciary on October 27, 1924, Mitchell became the fifth leader of the Liberal Party of Alberta. He would serve as Leader of the Official opposition until he was appointed in 1926 as a Justice to the Supreme Court of Alberta Appellate Division, when he vacated his seat and position as Liberal leader.

He retired from the judiciary in 1936.

Death

Mitchell died in 1942 in Edmonton, Alberta.

Electoral record

1910 by-election

Alberta provincial by-election, June 29, 1910: Medicine Hat
Upon the resignation of William T. Finlay
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Charles Richmond Mitchell 1,134 62.86% -8.80%
Conservative Walter Huckvale 670 37.14% 8.80%
Total 1,804
Rejected, spoiled and declined N/A
Eligible electors / turnout N/A N/A
Liberal hold Swing -8.80%
Source(s)
"By-elections". elections.ab.ca. Elections Alberta. Retrieved June 24, 2020.

1913 general election

1913 Alberta general election: Medicine Hat
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Nelson Spencer 1,843 50.27% 12.58%
Liberal Charles Richmond Mitchell 1,823 49.73% -12.58%
Total 3,666
Rejected, spoiled and declined N/A
Eligible electors / turnout N/A N/A
Conservative gain from Liberal Swing -12.58%
Source(s)
Source: "Medicine Hat Official Results 1913 Alberta general election". Alberta Heritage Community Foundation. Retrieved May 21, 2020.
Alberta provincial by-election, June 12, 1913: Bow Valley
Party Candidate Votes
Liberal Charles Richmond Mitchell Acclaimed
Called due to resignation of G. Lane to provide seat
Source: "By-elections for the Period of 1905 – 1973". Elections Alberta. Retrieved 2015-06-30.
1917 Alberta general election: Bow Valley
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Charles Richmond Mitchell 604 58.13% -3.65%
Conservative Edmund F. Purcell 435 41.87% 3.65%
Total 1,039
Rejected, spoiled and declined N/A
Eligible electors / turnout 1,466 70.87% 11.58%
Liberal hold Swing -3.65%
Source(s)
Source: "Bow Valley Official Results 1917 Alberta general election". Alberta Heritage Community Foundation. Retrieved May 21, 2020.
1921 Alberta general election: Bow Valley
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Charles Richmond Mitchell 1,694 72.30% 14.17%
United Farmers George A. Love 649 27.70%
Total 2,343
Rejected, spoiled and declined N/A
Eligible electors / turnout 2,669 N/A N/A
Liberal hold Swing 14.17%
Source(s)
Source: "Bow Valley Official Results 1921 Alberta general election". Alberta Heritage Community Foundation. Retrieved May 21, 2020.

Notes

References

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Charles Richmond Mitchell
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