Edward Slater is a son of Edward Slater, who for many years kept a hotel on Ohio street, Buffalo. The father was born in Dublin, came to America in the early days and died in 1892. Bridget (Brennan), the mother of our subject, was born in Sligo, Ireland, and is a close relation to Patrick Brennan, who was chief engineer of the Buffalo Water Works in 1896, and for many years previous.
The subject of this sketch was born at Buffalo, August 18, 1861, and received his education in the public schools of that city and in St. Joseph's College. His first experience on the water was as second cook on the little barge City of Port Huron, which ran from Buffalo to Marquette and Houghton. She was lost in 1877, foundering off Burchville, about eighteen miles out from St. Clair river. The crew got ashore at Lakeport, a town on the American shore about ten miles from Port Huron. Mr. Slater's next occupation in his chosen line was as fireman on the tug Orient, on which he remained for two seasons; this tug foundered off Point Pelee in 1890, and all on board were lost. For three seasons beginning with 1880 Mr. Slater was employed on Chicago harbor tugs and in the coasting trade on Lake Michigan, and in 1883 he was engineer of the tug Orient. On the 21st of June, 1884, he entered the employ of the Buffalo Fire Department, and acted as assistant engineer of engine No. 12 until 1888, when he was appointed engineer of the City of Buffalo fireboat (now the George R. Potter), and was in this position one year, when he was transferred to engine No. 17, which position he has held for nine years.
On February 19, 1889, Mr. Slater was married to Miss Nellie Purcell, at Buffalo. They have four children, named, respectively, Clair E., Thomas H., Florence M. and Arthur V. The family residence is at No. 539 Front avenue, Buffalo, New York.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.