Wednesday, August 28, 2013

How Immoral does He Have to Be?

Here's a likeness of the man I am speaking of today. B.C.'s 15th premier, Edward Gawler Prior.
There isn't a lot of information on our fifteenth premier, Edward Gawler Prior but, through the Free masonry website, I did find a obituary of Prior written in the Victoria Daily Times on December 13, 1920.

Prior was born in Dallowgill, Yorkshire England on May 1, 1853. He was educated at Leeds Grammar School then went onto study mining engineering at Wakefield.

In 1873, Prior arrived on Vancouver Island to work as an engineer and surveyor with the Vancouver Coal Mining and Land Company in Nanaimo.

This house is on West 6. The building date is listed as 1912.
Early in 1878, Prior was appointed Government Inspector of Mines and moved to Victoria but he returned later that year. In 1886, Prior won a seat in the BC provincial legislature where he served until 1888. That was the year that he won a position in the Canadian House of Commons as an MP for Victoria. (Federal level).

From December 1895 to the end of April of 1896, Edward was the Controller of Inland Revenue. He held the position for another month.

In 1901 is when things appear to have gotten interesting. Prior was kicked out of his federal seat for "violation of election rules." So what does he do? He runs in the provincial election and gets elected! Not only that, in 1902, he becomes Premier of the province.

So now Edward Prior is premier of B.C. - that last one to lead the government in a non party system. A year later, guess what happens? He is kicked by the lieutenant governor because Prior gave his hardware company a really important, government contract.

One thing you have to say for Prior is that he was a determined man and obviously didn't feel as if he had done anything wrong. In 1904, Prior lost both his provincial seat and an attempt to get back in the Canadian House of Commons. 

You would think that would be the end of this man's political career but that means that this story would be as interesting. Despite his misdeeds in public service and being dismissed by the lieutenant governor, Edward Gawler Prior became the province's 11th Lieutenant Governor 1919. Sadly, Prior became ill not long after his appointment and died in office.

Prior has the doubtful distinction of being the last Canadian premier to be dismissed by a Lieutenant Governor and the only BC Lieutenant Governor to die in office.

I started this article getting information from the free masonry site but when I looked around; I discovered that the obit in the paper was too complimentary. Not To Be Trusted With provided some juicer facts.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

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