Dr. William Thomas Gemmell was born on the 18th of January, 1875 in Tuckersmith Township, Huron County. He was the 7th of 8 children born to Thomas Gemmell and the former Jane McFadzean. His parents were farmers and his siblings were; John Gemmell, Mary Jane Gemmell, Agnes Gemmell, Helen Gemmell, Annie Grace Gemmell, David Gemmell and Elizabeth Janet Gemmell. Both of Dr. Gemmell’s parents were born in Scotland, but Dr. Gemmell and all of his siblings were born in Tuckersmith Twp (Huron County). Dr. Gemmell attended Stratford Collegiate and graduated as a teacher from the Ottawa Normal School. Dr. Gemmell taught school for a period of time, before enrolling in medical school.
In the 1901 Canadian Census, he was listed as a medical student living in Toronto, Ontario. He graduated M.D.,C.M. from Trinity Medical School in conjunction with The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine in 1903. Upon his graduation he was awarded a silver medal for his scholastic abilities.
Dr. Gemmell married Mary Jane Woods in Wawanosh Township, Huron County on the 11th of November, 1903. Mrs. Gemmell was born in Wawanosh Township on the 22nd of May, 1870. She was the eldest of 2 children born to Thomas Woods and the former Eliza Ann McLean. Her parents were farmers and her brother was named Thomas Albert Woods. (Thomas died in 1895 of typhoid fever at the age of 19).
Dr. Gemmell practiced medicine in Wheatley after he graduated. His office and residence were located on Erie Street. Dr. and Mrs. Gemmell had a son, Thomas Woods Gemmell born to them on the 7th of November, 1904. They moved to 33 Erie Street in Stratford, Ontario in 1906 just prior to the birth of their next child. A son Albert McFadzean Gemmell was born on the 16th of August, 1906. Baby Albert died on the 6th of December, 1906. He was buried at the Avondale Cemetery in Stratford. Another son, David Gemmell was born on the 5th of May, 1908. The family resided at 72 Erie Street in Stratford. Sadly Thomas Woods Gemmell died of diptheria on the 8th of May, 1910 at the age of 5. He was buried at Avondale Cemetery.
According to the 1921 census, the Gemmell family resided at 95 Waterloo Street in Stratford.
Dr. Gemmell enjoyed fishing and hunting and he was an avid photographer and gardener. He was a member of the Romeo Lodge No 164, the I.O.O.F. and the Sons of Scotland.
Mrs. Gemmell died at the Stratford General Hospital on the 21st of September, 1940. Dr. Gemmell died at the Stratford General Hospital on the 9th of September, 1942. According to the death record, Dr. Gemmell worked up until September 3rd (1942), which was less than a week before he died. Dr. and Mrs. Gemmell were buried at the Avondale Cemetery.
*Dr. Gemmell’s son, Dr. David Gemmell (1908-1982) graduated from The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine in 1934 and he practiced medicine in Stratford.