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Dictionary of Miramichi Biography

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FISHER, GEORGE EDWARD (1864-1936)

FISHER, GEORGE EDWARD, lumber company executive, farmer, and horticulturist; b. Fredericton, 5 Jun 1864, s/o William Fisher and Charity Ann French; m. 1888, Kathleen Chipman Connell, of Woodstock; d. Woodman's Point, Kings Co., N.B., 24 Aug 1936.

George E. Fisher was a grandson of Peter Fisher, New Brunswick's first historian, and a nephew of the Hon. Charles Fisher, a Father of Confederation and judge of the New Brunswick Supreme Court. His wife was a daughter of George H. Connell, MP for Carleton County, and thereby a descendant of another of the province's leading families.

After attending school in Fredericton, Fisher went to work with the lumber firm of R. A. & J. Stewart, which was based in Saint John. He was later employed by Guy, Bevan & Co., the successors to the Stewart firm. After their bankruptcy in 1887 he was agent at Chatham for the New Brunswick Trading Co., a lumber firm which did business on the Miramichi in the late 1880s and early 90s. He subsequently had a management position with J. B. Snowball & Co. for thirty-five years, but he was best known to the Miramichi public as a farmer and horticulturist.

Fisher acquired "Woodburn Cottage," the former home of Henry Cunard, as a residence for his family and engaged in dairying, poultry raising, and stock breeding on the farm at Morrison's Cove on which it is situated. In 1894 he advertised thoroughbred cattle for sale. The following year he began to breed Berkshire pigs. Wheat grown on the farm took a prize in the Saint John Exhibition in 1899 and was included in an award-winning display of Canadian food products at the Paris Exposition in 1900.

Fisher was president of the Napan Creamery Co. in 1900. In 1915 he opened the Woodburn Conservatory, which was the Miramichi's first commercial nursery. His extensive involvement in local organizations connected with farming and horticulture prompted the Miramichi Advance to describe him as "the backbone of all things agricultural around Chatham." For more than thirty years he was manager of the Miramichi Exhibition, which was described in 1919 as the biggest agricultural show in eastern Canada, with the largest and best-equipped buildings and grounds. In 1930-32 he served as president of the Exhibition Association. He was elected president of the Northumberland Agricultural Society in 1906 and was still president, or president again, in 1929, after it had become Northumberland Agricultural Society #9. He was a founder of the Swine Breeders' Association of New Brunswick, president of the New Brunswick Farmers' and Dairymen's Association, and a member of the provincial Farm Loan Board.

Fisher was president of the Chatham Lawn Tennis Club in the 1920s and the last president, between 1926 and 1932, of the Miramichi Natural History Association, before it entered a lengthy period of dormancy. Of necessity, he resigned all local offices in 1932 after taking advantage of an opportunity to sell Woodburn Farm and return to his native city of Fredericton to spend the last years of his retirement. He and his wife, Kathleen C. Connell, raised three daughters, and it was at the summer home of one of them that he died in 1936, following a period of serious illness.

Sources

[b] census [m] official records [d] Daily Gleaner 25 Aug 1936 / Advance 26 Mar 1888, 21 Jun 1894, 19 Dec 1895, 21 Sep 1899, 16 Aug 1900, 27 Sep 1900, 19 Dec 1901, 28 Apr 1904; Advocate 21 Apr 1915; Leader 7 Dec 1906, 14 Jul 1993, 15 Sep 1993, 2 Feb 1994, 9 Feb 1994, 15 Aug 1995; Busy East, Jul 1919; Hist. Mir. Nat. Hist. Ass'n; MacMillan; World 3 Dec 1913, 25 Jan 1913, 24 Apr 1915, 29 Jan 1916, 16 Dec 1916, 19 Dec 1917, 20 Aug 1919, 12 Nov 1919


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