James Edward Birch

James Edward Birch

Served during the following dates: 1897-00-00

BIRCH, JAMES EDWARD, merchant; b. 29 July 1849 in Port Hill, son of Thomas Birch and Agnes Ellis; m. 20 November 1901 Isabel Currie of Elmsdale, and there were no children; Anglican and Episcopalian; d. 6 December 1941 in Alberton.
Birch, a Conservative, was elected to the Legislative Assembly for Is' Prince in the 1897 general election. He was defeated in the general elections of 1893 and 1900.
After finishing his education in Port Hill, Birch moved to Alberton. In the partnership of Birch and Dyer he opened a general store in Alberton, which he operated for 40 years. He was secretary of the West Prince Board of Trade for three decades and participated in the Associated Board of Trades in the province for many years.
Birch devoted much time and energy to the temperance movement. A Son of Temperance and a lifelong abstainer, he was widely known for his efforts to curtail alcohol consumption. He was also a Forester and a Member of the Masonic Order. In 1935 he received a gold emblem in recognition of his long membership in the Masonic Lodge. An avid reader, Birch possessed an extensive library, which included volumes on history and the classics. James Birch died 6 December 1941.
Birch's father was born near Vale of Avoco in Ireland. His mother was born on the Island. Isabel Birch died 27 August 1950.

References: CPG 1897, 1899. 1901; Herald 27 November 1901; Maple Leaf Magazine January/February 19-12; Summerside Journal 10 December 1941; PARO: MNI-Census 1881, 1891; St. James Anglican and Elmsdale Cemetery Transcripts. Guide to abbreviations

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