Kenora Great War Project

 

Personal Details
Date of BirthOctober 16, 1879
Place of BirthNanticoke, Ontario
CountryCanada
Marital StatusMarried
Next of KinMrs. Mabel Low (wife), Sudbury, Ontario
Trade / CallingSurveyor
ReligionChurch of England
Service Details
ForceImperial Munitions Board
BranchSoldier Biographies
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Place of EnlistmentSudbury, Ontario
Address at EnlistmentSudbury, Ontario
Date of EnlistmentJanuary 1, 1916
Age at Enlistment36
Theatre of ServiceCanada
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathJanuary 1, 1954
Age at Death74
Buried AtLake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora, Ontario
PlotCG 0E

Low, Edward Hamilton

Retired Captain Edward Hamilton Low was a graduate of the Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario. Before the First World War he was an officer in the militia and during the war he served for three years with the Imperial Munitions Board.

Edward Hamilton, known as ‘Ham’ to his family and friends, was the oldest son of Edward John Low and Dorothea Gamble of Port Dover, Ontario. Edward was from Jersey in the Channel Islands and Dorothea was born in Ontario. They were married in 1876 in Guelph, Ontario and they settled in the township of Walpole in Haldimand County. An 1879 map shows the farm of Edward J. Low on the shores of Lake Erie, at the mouth of Nanticoke Creek and very close to the village of Nanticoke. Hamilton was born there on 16 October 1879. He had an older sister Kathleen and two younger siblings, Dora and Kenneth.

By 1881 Hamilton’s family had moved to the nearby town of Port Dover and his father was retired. Hamilton completed his high school education in Port Dover. In 1897 he was accepted at the Royal Military College in Kingston and he graduated in June 1900. When the 1901 census was taken he was working as a surveyor in Sudbury, Ontario, serving his apprenticeship. He was commissioned into the Association of Ontario Land Surveyors in February 1902. For the next three years he worked for the British government doing geodetic surveying in the Federated Malay States (now Malaysia). He arrived back in Canada in 1905 and settled in Sudbury, working for the firm of DeMorest, Stull and Low. He also served as an officer in a local militia unit, the 97th Regiment (Algonquin Rifles).

Hamilton was married in Sudbury on 1 January 1907. His wife, Mabel Helen Hatch, was the daughter of Albert and Adeline Hatch of Algonac, Michigan. She was born in Michigan and living in Sturgeon Falls, Ontario at the time of their marriage. Hamilton and Mabel had three children: Dorothy Jean (1909), Kenneth Hamilton (1911) and Albert Edward (1916).

According to his Canadian Legion application (Kenora branch), Hamilton enlisted in Sudbury in January 1916 and served briefly with the 228th Battalion, possibly as a recruiting officer. He was transferred to the Imperial Munitions Board and he served with them until the end of the war. The Imperial Munitions Board had been established in Canada in November 1915. It managed existing factories and built new ones to produce war materiel including shells, explosives, propellants, fuses, vehicles, ships and aircraft. It also developed airfields for Canada’s large pilot training program.

After the war Hamilton returned to his professional practice in Sudbury. In 1921 he was hired by the Fort Frances Pulp and Paper Company as engineer in charge of land surveying and water power examinations. The company amalgamated with other firms and in 1941 became part of the Ontario-Minnesota Pulp and Paper Company, which operated a mill in Kenora. In 1943 Hamilton was appointed manager of the company’s land development program and he and Mabel moved to Kenora. Hamilton became a member of the Kenora branch of the Canadian Legion in 1944. He was an avid golfer, an outdoorsman and nature lover and an outstanding authority on Ontario’s water resources.

Hamilton passed away at home on 1 January 1954, at age 74. Mabel died in 1966 and along with their daughter Jean (1909-1992) they are buried in Lake of the Woods Cemetery in Kenora.

By Becky Johnson

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