Born at St. Lin, Quebec, Henri-Charles-Wilfrid Laurier (1841–1919), was a lawyer, journalist and politician, leader of the Liberal Party from 1887 to 1919 and Prime Minister of Canada from 1896 to 1911. Laurier is remembered for consolidating Confederation by creating compromises between French and English Canadians over language issues in education, creating Alberta and Saskatchewan, supporting the construction of two transcontinental railways, helping to refine the role of religion in social services and defining the extent of Canada’s military commitments to the British Empire. Laurier was in favour of Canada contributing to the First World War, believing such support served Canada’s interests, and he campaigned for military volunteers while attacking Prime Minister Robert Borden’s indifference to the hardships created by wartime inflation. To defuse the conscription crisis, Laurier proposed a national referendum on conscription and worked to defend national unity by continuing to work with French and English Canadians during the divisive election in 1917. Although Laurier died in 1919, his party’s concern for social welfare is evident in its 1919 election promise of a federal guarantee for universal access to health care.