Head of state (monarch) – Queen Elizabeth II (consort – The Duke of Edinburgh)
Governor general – Vincent Massey (viceregal consort – Alice Massey)
Prime minister – Louis Saint Laurent
Lieutenant Governor of Alberta – John J. Bowlen
Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia – Frank Mackenzie Ross
Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba – John Stewart McDiarmid
Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick – David Laurence MacLaren
Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland – Leonard Outerbridge
Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia – Alistair Fraser
Lieutenant Governor of Ontario – Louis Orville Breithaupt
Lieutenant Governor of Prince Edward Island – Thomas William Lemuel Prowse
Lieutenant Governor of Quebec – Gaspard Fauteux
Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan – William John Patterson
Premier of Alberta – Ernest Manning
Premier of British Columbia – W.A.C. Bennett
Premier of Manitoba – Douglas Campbell
Premier of New Brunswick – Hugh John Flemming
Premier of Newfoundland – Joey Smallwood
Premier of Nova Scotia – Henry Hicks (until November 20) then Robert Stanfield
Premier of Ontario – Leslie Frost
Premier of Prince Edward Island – Alex Matheson
Premier of Quebec – Maurice Duplessis
Premier of Saskatchewan – Tommy Douglas
Commissioner of Yukon – Frederick Howard Collins
Commissioner of Northwest Territories – Robert Gordon Robertson
February 10 – Wilbert Coffin is hanged
May 1 – The Trades and Labour Congress of Canada merges with the Canadian Congress of Labour to form the Canadian Labour Congress.
May 8 – The controversial bill to create the TransCanada pipeline is introduced in the House of Commons.
May 15 – A CF-100 crashes into a Grey Nuns convent outside of Ottawa killing fifteen.
June 20 – Saskatchewan election: Tommy Douglas's Co-operative Commonwealth Federation wins a fourth consecutive majority
September 30 – Winnipeg connects to TransCanada Telephone System's microwave radio relay via MTS, bringing same day programming from CBC Television.
November 1 – The second Springhill Mining Disaster occurs killing 39.
November 4 – Lester B. Pearson proposes a successful resolution to the Suez Crisis, this will win him a Nobel Peace Prize.
November 20 – Robert Stanfield becomes premier of Nova Scotia, replacing Henry Hicks
December 9 – Trans-Canada Air Lines Flight 810 (9), a Canadair Northstar, crashes on Slesse Mountain near Chilliwack during heavy weather. The plane carried the Saskatchewan Roughriders and Winnipeg Blue Bombers and fans on their way home from a game in Vancouver. Bodies were not found until the following late summer due to severe terrain and high altitude and unknown location of the crash. This was one of the worst civilian air disasters in the world at the time.
December 14 – John Diefenbaker is elected leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada.
René Lévesque begins hosting Point de Mire
Milton Acorn – In Love and Anger
Pierre Berton – The Mysterious North
Max Aitken – Men and Power
Leonard Cohen – Let Us Compare Mythologies
Harold Innis – Essays in Canadian Economic History
Farley Mowat – Lost in the Barrens
See 1956 Governor General's Awards for a complete list of winners and finalists for those awards.
Stephen Leacock Award: Eric Nicol, Shall We Join The Ladies'
Walter Susskind replaces Sir Ernest MacMillan as the director of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra.
Pianist Glenn Gould tours the Soviet Union
January 6 – Peter Stoffer, politician
January 9 – Gregory Dewar, politician
January 28 – David Faurschou, politician
February 28 – Guy Maddin, screenwriter and film director
February 29 – Steve Ashton, politician
February 29 – Bob Speller, politician
April 4 – Evelyn Hart, ballet dancer
April 6 - Normand Corbeil, composer (Double Jeopardy, Extreme Ops, The Statement, V) (d.2013)
April 10 – Thomas Graham, volleyball player
May 7 – Jean Lapierre, television broadcaster, politician and Minister (d. 2016)
May 9 – Wendy Crewson, actress
May 15 – Ian Clyde, boxer
May 19 – James Gosling, software developer, father of the Java programming language
May 29 – Claude Drouin, politician
June 10 – Hugh McMillan, musician
June 15 – David Iftody, politician (d.2001)
June 15 – Dan Thompson, swimmer
June 18 – Oliver Schroer, fiddler, composer and music producer (d.2008)
June 22 – Blake Debassige, artist
July 8 – Terry Puhl, baseball player
July 10 - Robert Ing, forensic scientist and author
July 15 – Barry Melrose, ice hockey player, coach and commentator
July 17 – Bryan Trottier, ice hockey player
July 20 - Jim Prentice, politician, Premier of Alberta 2014–2015 (d. 2016)
August 5 - Jerry Ciccoritti, director
August 7 – Paul Williams, long-distance runner
August 12 – Bruce Greenwood, actor
October 5 – Brad Farrow, judoka
October 7 – Brian Sutter, ice hockey player and coach
October 17 – Sheela Basrur, medical doctor and Chief Medical Officer of Health in Ontario (d.2008)
October 23 – Geoffrey Kelly, musician
October 24 – Chris Clarke, boxer
December 10 – Marie Bountrogianni, politician and Minister
December 31 – Paul Zed, lawyer, professor and politician
January 6 – Albert James Bradshaw, politician (b.1882)
January 12 – Sam Langford, boxer (b.1886)
February 14 – Aylesworth Perry, 6th Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (b.1860)
March 10 – Vere Ponsonby, 9th Earl of Bessborough, businessman, politician and Governor General of Canada (b.1880)
March 30 – Joseph W. Noseworthy, politician (b.1888)
March 30 – Thomas Dufferin Pattullo, politician and 22nd Premier of British Columbia (b.1873)
August 4 – Joseph Georges Bouchard, politician (b.1888)
September 11 – Billy Bishop, First World War flying ace (b.1894)
September 15 – Charles Dow Richards, judge, politician and 18th Premier of New Brunswick (b.1879)
September 18 – Adélard Godbout, politician and 15th Premier of Quebec (b.1892)
October 7 – Maud Allan, actor, dancer and choreographer (b.1873)
November 18 – Clarence Chant, astronomer and physicist (b.1865)
December 3 – Matthew Halton, radio and television journalist (b.1904)
December 7 – Huntley Gordon, actor (b.1887)
1956 in Canada Wikipedia
Events from the year 1956 in Canada.