Home History Lasting Legacies: 6 Canadian Immigrants with a Remarkable History

Lasting Legacies: 6 Canadian Immigrants with a Remarkable History


Immigration is a key to growing a country. All of us who live in Canada come from a history of immigration, and Canadians have historically been open to allowing foreigners access to citizenship and immigration. Indeed, there have been some incredible people who have immigrated to Canada. Here are the top six immigrants in Canadian history:

1. Alexander Graham Bell

Alexander Graham Bell is easily the most famous immigrant in Canadian history. Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, he and his family moved to Canada in 1870. He is credited with inventing the telephone, with the official birth of the telephone coming on March 10, 1876.

2. Donovan Bailey

During the peak of his Olympic dominance as a runner, Donovan Bailey was a widely recognizable figure throughout Canada. Having immigrated to Canada from Jamaica at the age of 13, he became the most successful Canadian runner in the Olympics with two gold medals, setting the world record in the 100-metre dash in the process.

3. Adrienne Clarkson

Just like Michaëlle Jean, Adrienne Clarkson was appointed as the Governor General despite not having been born in Canada. Moving to Ottawa in 1942, she obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree and began a career in writing and journalism. After working for 30 years, she was appointed as Governor General in 1999. She was the first visible minority to be granted this position.

4. Michaëlle Jean

As a refugee from Haiti, MachaëlleJeane came to Canada in 1968. After obtaining a number of degrees, she worked as a journalist and a broadcaster for CBC, along with being active in assisting victims of domestic violence. Her most notable achievement is being appointed as the Governor General of Canada in 2005.

5. Mackenzie Bowell

Mackenzie Bowell was born in Rickinghall, England, and moved to Canada in 1832. After establishing himself as a successful businessman, he turned his eye to politics. In 1894, he became the 5th prime minister of Canada.

6. John Turner

Born in Richmond, England in 1929, John Turner moved to Canada as a young boy. Throughout his life, he held several prominent political positions, culminating in him becoming the 17th prime minister of Canada. He was the first prime minister of Canada who was born in England since Mackenzie Bowel, who we look at next.