John A. Resigns as Prime Minister

November 5, 1873
Russell House Hotel by William James Topley, circaa 1893. Source: Library and Archives Canada.Pinterest
Russell House Hotel by William James Topley, circa 1893. Source: Library and Archives Canada.

On November 5, 1873, plagued by scandal over accepting funds for a new railway during the 1872 election campaign, Sir John A. resigned as prime minister. To this day, he remains the only Canadian prime minister ever forced out of office by a scandal. The opposition Liberals took the helm. On November 6, 1873, Macdonald withdrew as Conservative Party leader only to be promptly reinstated. A week later, he attended a banquet held in his honour at the Russell House Hotel, and was marched through the streets while a band played, "When Johnny comes marching home again."