Albert Edward Smith (1870-1947) had an active and varied history in the ministry and in politics. He was born in Guelph, Ontario, was received on trial for the Methodist ministry in 1891, studied at Wesley College, Winnipeg, and was ordained in 1897. He ministered in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and became increasingly radical in theology and politics. He left the Methodist Church to found the People's Church in Brandon, Manitoba, in 1919 and was elected as a Member of Provincial Parliament, as a Labour member, the same year. He was defeated in 1922, and moved to Toronto to start another People's Church. In 1924 he left this church and joined the Communist Party. He was active as a Communist organizer, writer, and thinker.