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Wilfrid Laurier

Sir Henri Charles Wilfrid Laurier was a Canadian politician and statesman who served as the seventh prime minister of Canada, in office from 11 July 1896 to 6 October 1911. Laurier is considered one of the country's greatest statesmen, he is well known for his policies of conciliation, expanding Confederation, compromise between French and English Canada. His vision for Canada was a land of decentralized federalism, he argued for an English–French partnership in Canada. "I have had before me as a pillar of fire," he said, "a policy of true Canadianism, of moderation, of reconciliation." He passionately defended individual liberty, "Canada is free and freedom is its nationality," and "Nothing will prevent me from continuing my task of preserving at all cost our civil liberty." Laurier was well-regarded for his efforts to establish Canada as an autonomous country within the British Empire, he supported the continuation of the Empire if it was based on "absolute liberty political and commercial".

In addition, he was a strict nationalist, argued for a more competitive Canada through limited government, was an adherent of fiscal discipline. A 2011 Maclean's historical ranking of the Prime Ministers placed Laurier first. Canada's first francophone prime minister, Laurier holds a number of records, he is tied with Sir John A. Macdonald for the most consecutive federal elections won, his 15-year tenure remains the longest unbroken term of office among prime ministers. In addition, his nearly 45 years of service in the House of Commons is a record for that house. At 31 years, 8 months, Laurier was the longest-serving leader of a major Canadian political party, surpassing William Lyon Mackenzie King by over two years. Along with King, he holds the distinction of serving as Prime Minister during the reigns of three Canadian Monarchs, he is the fourth-longest serving Prime Minister of Canada, behind King and Pierre Trudeau. Laurier's portrait has been displayed on the Canadian five-dollar bill since 1972.

The second child of Carolus Laurier and Marcelle Martineau, Wilfrid Laurier was born in Saint-Lin, Canada East, on 20 November 1841. Laurier was among the seventh generation of his family in Canada, he was a sixth-generation Canadian. His ancestor François Cottineau, dit Champlaurier, came to Canada from France, he grew up in a family where politics was a staple of debate. His father, an educated man having liberal ideas, enjoyed a certain degree of prestige about town. In addition to being a farmer and surveyor, he occupied such sought-after positions as mayor, justice of the peace, militia lieutenant and school board member. At the age of 11, Wilfrid left home to study in New Glasgow, a neighbouring village inhabited by immigrants from Scotland. Over the next two years, he familiarized himself with the mentality and culture of British people. Laurier attended the Collège de L'Assomption and graduated in law from McGill University in 1864, he was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Quebec from Drummond-Arthabaska in the 1871 Quebec general election, but resigned on 19 January 1874, to enter federal politics in the riding of Quebec East.

He was first elected to the House of Commons of Canada in the 1874 election, serving in the Cabinet of Prime Minister Alexander Mackenzie as Minister of Inland Revenue. Chosen as leader of the federal Liberal Party in 1887, he built up his party's strength through his personal following both in Quebec and elsewhere in Canada, he led the Liberal Party to victory in the 1896 election, contested five other federal elections. By 1909, Laurier had been able to build the Liberal Party a base in Quebec, which had remained a Conservative stronghold for decades due to the province's social conservatism and to the influence of the Roman Catholic Church, which distrusted the Liberals' anti-clericalism; the growing alienation of French Canadians from the Conservative Party due to its links with anti-French, anti-Catholic Orangemen in English Canada aided the Liberal Party. These factors, combined with the collapse of the Conservative Party of Quebec, gave Laurier an opportunity to build a stronghold in French Canada and among Catholics across Canada.

Catholic priests in Quebec warned their parishioners not to vote for Liberals. Their slogan was "le ciel est bleu, l'enfer est rouge". Laurier led Canada during a period of rapid industrialization and immigration, his long career straddles a period of major economic change. As Prime Minister he was instrumental in ushering Canada into the 20th century and in gaining greater autonomy from Britain for his country. A list of his Ministers is available at the Parliamentary website, is known as the 8th Canadian Ministry. One of Laurier's first acts as Prime Minister was to implement a solution to the Manitoba Schools Question, which had helped to bring down the Conservative government of Charles Tupper earlier in 1896; the Manitoba legislature had passed a law eliminating public funding for Catholic schooling. The Catholic minority asked the federal Government for support, the Conservatives proposed remedial legislation to override Manitoba's legislation. Laurier opposed the remedial legislation on the basis of provincial rights, succeeded in blocking its passage by Parliament.

Once elected, L

Lesnes Abbey

Lesnes Abbey is a former abbey, now ruined, in Abbey Wood, in the London Borough of Bexley, southeast London, England. It is a scheduled ancient monument and the adjacent Lesnes Abbey Woods are a Local Nature Reserve. Part of the wood is the Abbey Wood SSSI, a geological Site of Special Scientific Interest, an important site for early Tertiary fossils. After the Norman Conquest of 1066, the area of Lesnes, close to the town of Erith, passed into the possession of Bishop Odo and is mentioned in the Domesday Survey as Loisnes in the Hundred of Litlelai; the year 1178 saw the foundation of St Thomas the Martyr at Lesnes. Lesnes Abbey, as it is known, was founded by Richard de Luci, Chief Justiciar of England, in 1178, it is speculated, this may have been in penance for the murder of Thomas Becket, in which he was involved. In 1179, de Luci retired to the Abbey, where he died three months later, he was buried in the chapter house. The abbey is situated in the suburbs of south east London, in the north of an ancient but long-managed Lesnes Abbey Woods that are named after it, where the land rises above what would have been marshland.

In 1381 Abel Ker of Erith led a local uprising linked to the famous Peasants' Revolt. It began in Essex but a mob from Erith burst into nearby Lesnes Abbey and forced the abbot to swear an oath to support them. After this they marched to Maidstone to join the main body of men led by Wat Tyler; the Abbott of Lesnes Abbey was an important local landlord, took a leading part in draining the marshland. However and the cost of maintaining river embankments was one of the reasons given for the Abbey's chronic financial difficulties, it never became a large community, was closed by Cardinal Wolsey in 1525, under a licence to suppress monasteries of less than seven inmates. It was one of the first monasteries to be closed after the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1534, the monastic buildings were all pulled down, except for the Abbott's Lodging. Henry Cooke acquired the site in 1541 and it passed to Sir John Hippersley who salvaged building materials, before selling the property to Thomas Hawes of London in 1632.

It was bequeathed to Christ's Hospital in 1633. Some of the stone is said to have been used in the construction of Hall Place in nearby Bexley; the abbey was lost and the area became farmland with the abbots house forming part of a farmhouse. It has been restored to show some of the walls and the entire outline of the abbey is visible giving a good idea of the size and atmosphere of the original place, it is on the Green Chain Walk and surrounded by an ornamental garden. There is a cafe and a small exhibition of the abbey and toilet facilities for visitors. There is a large externally propped mulberry tree at the northern side of the abbey; the site was excavated by District Antiquarian Society in 1909-1910 approx. Some archaeological finds from the Abbey's site are displayed in Greenwich Heritage Centre, Artillery Square at Woolwich SE18 4DX, others are further east in the museum in Erith Library 100 High Street DA8 1SL; the "Missale de Lesnes" is in the library of the Victoria & Albert Museum in Exhibition Road, London.

The former London County Council purchased the site of the ruins in 1930, which were opened to the public as a park in 1931. Since 1986, the site has been the property of the London Borough of Bexley. A branch of the Green Chain Walk passes the ruins on its way from Oxleas Wood to Thamesmead riverside. Richard de Luci Today Lesnes Abbey gives its name to one of the 21 electoral wards that the London Borough of Bexley is divided into; the ruins themselves are in the north of Lesnes Abbey ward. Woolwich Road, the A206 road cuts through the middle of the ward spanning east to west. West Heath is located within the ward to the south of Woolwich road. Lesnes Abbey ward is 2.5 km long north to south at its longest point, little under 1.5 km at its widest point east to east. The population of the ward at the 2011 Census was 11,346. Lessness Heath Bexley Abbey ruins, London Borough of Bexley Lesnes Abbey Conservation Volunteers Houses of Austin canons: The abbey of Lesnes or Westwood. A History of the County of Kent.

2. 1926. Pp. 165–167. Retrieved 5 December 2007

Berlin Wriezener Bahnhof

Berlin Wriezener Bahnhof was a passenger railway terminus in Berlin, Germany. The station was situated close to the modern Ostbahnhof, its goods station was extended between it and Warschauer Straße station. From 1867 to 1882, nearby the Wriezener Bahnhof, Old Ostbahnhof functioned as a passenger terminal; the Wriezener Bahnhof was built in 1903 at the end of a short spur from Lichtenberg station, as the dedicated terminus of the Wriezener Bahn, opened in 1892. From 1903 to 1924, it was a simple Bahnsteig part of the Schlesischer Bahnhof, named Schlesischer Bahnhof, it was not until 1924 that it was renamed "Wriezener Bahnhof". In 1949 the station was used as a goods and mail station. In 2005 the tracks were removed and, in late 2006, a Metro supermarket and a Hellweg store were built in its place. Nowadays the area, owned by Deutsche Bahn, is earmarked for future estate projects; the old station building is the only surviving structure, two roads remind us of the existence of the station. Berlin Ostbahnhof Berlin Old Ostbahnhof Media related to Berlin Wriezener Bahnhof at Wikimedia Commons Maps and infos about the Wriezener Bahnhof