'Unbuttoned: A History of Mackenzie King's Secret Life'
But he was the longest serving, holding office for 22 years. And he was a respected statesman when he stepped down in 1948 — so much so that when he died two years later, tens of thousands of people stood in line to visit his coffin as he lay in state.
And then, in the 1970's, his most private thoughts began to leak into the public sphere.
Suddenly the "statesman" earned a slew of new nicknames, including Weird Willie and the "dingbat in the Canadian belfry".
The story of the diaries —and the secrets, melodrama and backroom dealings associated with them — is revealed in Christopher Dummit's new book, called Unbuttoned, A History of Mackenzie King's Secret Life.
Professor Dummitt teaches history at Trent University in Peterborough.
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