Niagara County

1897 Biography - Edward Evans

Evans, Edward, was born in Haldim and county, Ontario, Canada, September 14, 1830. At the age of sixteen he went upon the lakes and continued his connection with them in the timber business for many years. He has transported as much as 200,000,000 feet of timber from the northwest for eastern markets. He has done a great deal to develop and build up North Tonawanda, and is a large owner of real estate in the corporation. He was instrumental in opening the first bank in Tonawanda, the banking house of Evans, Killmaster & Co., in 1872, which became a depository of State funds and which was succeeded in 1877 by the house of Evans, Schwinger & Co. In 1883 he was one of the organizers of the State Bank. Three years later Mr. Evans organized and became president of the Lumber Exchange Bank. But it is as a political reformer that Mr. Evans has achieved the broadest and perhaps the most enduring fame. In the early '50's, while yet in Canada, he espoused the cause of William Lyon McKenzie, and his early advocacy of the principles of that great reformer evinced his political sagacity, for the Reform party is today in power in Canada. In 1887 the National Reform party held its first conference in Buffalo. Conferences have been held since in Syracuse, Chicago, St. Louis and Pittsburg (its headquarters being now in the latter place) and Mr. Evans has been prominent both in its counsels and its offices since its first conference in 1887. It is his unfaltering belief that this party is destined to become great, because of its aims and principles which are certain to attract all fair-minded, intelligent men, when they become familiar with them. In 1884 Mr. Evans was nominated for Congress on the Prohibition ticket, and ran ahead of the rest of the Prohibition candidates in the United States. The following year he was nominated for secretary of state by the Prohibition party, and ran ahead of his ticket. Mr. Evans was formerly chairman and is now first vice-president of the National Reform Party, of which Prof. William J. Seeley, of Wooster, Ohio, University, is chairman, and it is not saying too much of him to assert that he is capable of filling any office with ability and distinction. December 29, 1851, Mr. Evans married Nancy Campbell Bissette, of Trafalgar, Ontario, Canada, and they have six children living, four sons and two daughters, and four deceased. Mr. Evans and his family are connected with the First Christian church of North Tonawanda.

Contributed 2017 by Lisa Slaski from Landmarks of Niagara County, New York, by William Pool, D. Mason & Co., Syracuse, NY, 1897

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