William Johnson was the third Governor-General of the Confederation of North America, serving from February 1853 to August 1856. Johnson was elected to the First Grand Council from Manitoba in the 1843 Grand Council elections as a National Conservative. He opposed war with the United States of Mexico in 1845, and remained a steadfast critic of the Rocky Mountain War while winning re-election to the Grand Council in 1848. By 1853, most of the voters in the C.N.A. came to agree with Johnson, and the National Conservative caucus nominated him for Governor-General that year. The National Conservatives won 91 seats in the 1853 Grand Council elections, and Johnson assumed power as Governor-General on February 16.
Johnson agreed to negotiations with Mexican President Hector Niles in April 1853, and a cease-fire went into effect on August 1. A peace treaty was signed in The Hague on August 7, 1855, and following its ratification by the Grand Council, Johnson himself signed the peace agreement in August 1856. Shortly afterwards, Johnson resigned, and the Grand Council chose Minister of the Exchequer Whitney Hawkins to succeed him.
While the Hague Treaty was being negotiated, Johnson sought to increase foreign investment in the C.N.A. Minister of State Montgomery Harcourt traveled to London to meet with Prime Minister John Temple, convincing Temple to encourage British bankers to invest in North American industrial development.
Sobel's source for the career of William Johnson is Winsor Watkins' The Late Bloomer: William Johnson and the Election of 1853 (New York, 1969).
|Governors-General of the C.N.A.|
|Winfield Scott • Henry Gilpin • William Johnson • Whitney Hawkins • Kenneth Parkes • Herbert Clemens • John McDowell • Ezra Gallivan • Clifton Burgen • Christopher Hemingway • Albert Merriman • Calvin Wagner • Henderson Dewey • Douglas Watson • Bruce Hogg • James Billington • Richard Mason • Perry Jay • Carter Monaghan|