Paul Joseph James Martin

Canadian Politician.

Paul Joseph James Martin, better known as Paul Martin Sr., was a Canadian politician. He was born in Ottawa on June 23, 1903. Paul Martin Sr. was the Secretary of State for External Affairs from 1963 to 1968 and the Minister of National Health and Welfare (now known as Health Canada).  He is also well-known for his influence in urging Prime Minister St. Laurent to accept national health insurance. His son, Paul Martin Jr., was the Prime Minister of Canada from 2003 to 2006. Paul Martin Sr. passed away on September 14, 1992 in Windsor, Ontario.

Martin’s family moved to Pembroke, Ontario when Martin was an infant. After being sent by his family to attend at St. Alexandre College in Gatineau, Quebec, he studied philosophy at St. Michael’s College in Toronto. Martin went on to obtain a law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School and pursued postgraduate studies at Harvard, Cambridge, and Trinity College. He then settled in Windsor and set up a law practice in the city.

Martin was a professor of political science at the University of Windsor until his death in 1992. Martin also was a government leader in the Senate and high commissioner to Britain from 1975 to 1979. Martin wrote a memoir (A Very Public Life) that was published as two volumes in 1983 and 1986, respectively.

Several buildings in Windsor have been named in Martin’s honour, including the Paul Martin Sr. Building, located in downtown Windsor. The University of Windsor’s law library (known as the Paul Martin Law Library) is named after Martin. The Paul Martin Mansion, built in 1928, is also a prominent building in the Windsor area, which was purchased by Martin and his wife in 1961.


Donaghy, G. (2015). Grit: The life and politics of Paul Martin Sr. Vancouver, Toronto: UBC Press.

English, J.R. (2007). Paul Joseph James Martin. The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Whealen, J. P. (1968). Meet Paul Martin: A personal sketch. Winnipeg, MN: Greywood

Kennedy, M. (2003, Nov 15). Paul martin’s life, so far (part 1 of 3). The Vancouver Sun.

Library and Archives Canada. (n.d.). Martin, The Right Hon. Paul Joseph James, P.C., C.C., Q.C., M.A., LL.M., Hon. LL.D., Hon. DCL, Hon.. Retrieved from

Martin, P. (1983). A Very Public Life. Ottawa, Ont.: Deneau.

Martin, P. (1988). Paul Martin: The London Diaries, 1975-1979. [Ottawa]: University of Ottawa Press.

Martin, P. (1980). Political Life. Windsor, Ont.: Windsor Public Library.

May, G. (2014). This restored Windsor mansion hosted Al Capone and Paul Martin Jr.