From: "Montreal History and Gazeteer to the year 1892"
By Rev. J. Douglas Borthwick, John Lovell & Son, Montreal 1892

H.A. Nelson was born in Keene, New Hampshire, on October 20, 1816, and removed to Montreal when twenty-four years of age, in the year 1840, entering into business with the late Isaac Butters, under the name of Nelson & Butters. The firm so existed until 1861 when Mr. Butters retired on account of ill-health, and O.S. Wood  took his place until he retired from a similar cause in 1874.  Mr. Nelson then took into partnership his four sons*[Albert Daniel (or David?) NelsonHoratio William Nelson, Frederick Eaton Nelson and George Herbert Nelson] and the firm name was changed to H.A. Nelson & Sons, which at present it bears.

In the year 1878, Mr. Nelson was elected to represent Montreal Centre in the Quebec Legislature, as a supporter of  Mr. Joly, and represented the constituency for three years, when he retired. But it was as an Alderman that Mr. Nelson was best known. Occupying a seat in the Municipal Council for the long period of fourteen years, and for the latter portion holding the important post of Chairman of the FinanceCommittee, a position for which he proved himself singularily well fitted, his name will be associated with what was best calculated to secure a judicious regulation and expenditure of the civic funds, and to promote the best interests of the city generally.

In the commercial community Mr. Nelson was equally well known and esteemed. In addition to building up a large and prosperous business, he was a trusted councillor of the boards of several public companies and institutions. He was a director of the Molsons Bank, President of the Loan and Investments Association, and Vice-President of the Provincial Loan Association.  The deceased gentleman was also foremost in works of a charitable nature, and the boards and committteesof several charitable societies have missed his kind presence, his sympathetic aid, and his valued advice. Particularily, his death was mourned by the pastor and congregation of the American Presbyterian Church. For many years he was an active member of that church, and at his death was senior elder, the Chairman of the Board of  Trustees, and Superintendent of the Sunday School, in all of which his loss has been deeply felt. 

This worthy man died at home in Montreal on the 24th December, 1882. Speaking of his demise on the following day, the Gazette said: "By his death the community loses a large-hearted, upright and honourable citizen, and the city, one of who as a member of the Council and in various other capacities has proved himself a man of sound judgement, of sterling integrity, and of active and beneficial enterprise."

*Researching Horatio A. Nelson (actually his son Horatio William Nelson)..........Patty Brown

Return to Notable Montrealers

Back to the homepage

Questions, Comments or Suggestions?
Patty Brown
coordinator of the MontréalGenWeb