Archives provinciales du Nouveau-Brunswick

Dictionary of Miramichi Biography

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SHANAHAN, JAMES DOUGLAS, general merchant, public employee, and high sheriff, 1951-63; b. Nelson, 18 Feb 1892, s/o William Shanahan and Eliza Creamer; m. 1924, Lillian Catherine Fitzpatrick, d/o John Fitzpatrick and Catherine Lynch, of Nelson; d. Newcastle, 17 Apr 1992.

James D. Shanahan was educated at the Chatham Grammar School and St Thomas College and held a diploma from a business school in Toronto. From 1914 to 1937 he conducted a general store at Nelson. When the provincial Old Age Pension Act of 1927 came into effect he was hired to conduct the means tests which were required of applicants. He became an inspector with the pension board in 1937. He continued in this work until 1941, when he was appointed camp superintendent of the Air Observer School at the Chatham air base, with responsibility for "the maintenance and efficiency of the station." After the war he was a sales representative for a Montreal equipment company. In 1951 he succeeded Frank A. Menzies as high sheriff of Northumberland County. He retired in 1963.

Shanahan sat as a county councillor for several terms and was warden in 1933. He was a returning officer for a number of elections and ran as an Independent in the federal election of 1970. He took an active part in community organizations, serving terms as president of the local Red Cross Society, the Newcastle Rotary Club, and the Miramichi Historical Society. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus and different recreational bodies. Two months before he died he celebrated his 100th birthday. He and his wife, Lillian C. Fitzpatrick, who died in 1985, were survived by four sons and three daughters.


[b/m/d] Leader 22 Apr 1892 / Leader 8 Oct 1970, 12 Feb 1992; Lee, A.; News 20 Nov 1985; Shanahan family data