Mayor Edward G. Pannell


Edwin George Pannell was born in 1864 in Medhurst, Sussex, England to George Crocker Pannell and Emily (nee Crowther). He was baptized on May 14, 1871 in Funtington, Sussex, England and came to Nanaimo in the late 1880’s as a young man eventually opening a butcher shop in that city on Prideaux Street. The 1901 Canada Census shows that he had a partner, David Plaskett in that enterprise. On August 20, 1890 he married Alice Withall in Nanaimo. Alice, born 1865 in New Hampshire was the daughter of Walter Withall and Eliza (nee Robinson).

Edwin and Alice were to have four daughters while living in Nanaimo. Twins Edith Emily and Mary Eliza were born on June 20, 1891, Ellen Beatrice (or Nellie) was born on December 30, 1894 and Elsie was born on August 19, 1896. By 1904, Edwin and family had moved to Ladysmith where he opened the towns first butcher shop, operating this until around 1920.

Edith and Mary both worked at the BC Telephone office in Ladysmith as did Elsie after Edith left to get married. Edith married William Allen on September 15, 1919 but died the following year on March 20, 1920 of pneumonia. Younger daughter, Nellie had died only 10 days earlier on March 10th from complications during pregnancy. She had only been married since March 24, 1919 to William Robert Beattie.

Edwin ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Ladysmith in the 1915 election losing to John Bickle by a mere 16 votes. He was more successful in the 1917 election serving as mayor for two years as well as President of the Board of Trade. He also served as a school board trustee.

In 1920, Edwin and Alice left Ladysmith. The 1920 U.S. census shows an Edwin G and Alice Pannell residing in King County, Washington. Their youngest daughter, Elsie, also moved to Seattle, Washington and married someone by the name of Smith. She passed away in Seattle on April 20, 1949 at 51 years of age.

On July 26, 1922 William Allen married his deceased wife Emily’s twin sister, Mary in Vancouver. Alice Pannell died in Vernon BC on November 19, 1957 at 88 years of age.

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