Dr. Edgar Daniel Gillis was born in Aldborough Twp (Elgin County) on the August 28th, 1881. He was the eldest of 2 children born to Neil D. Gillis and the former Barbara Crawford. His parents were farmers his sister, Margaret “Maggie” Mabel Gillis was born on the 22nd of December, 1883. Dr. Gillis was not quite 4 years old, when his father died on the 25th of March, 1885 at the age of 30 years. By 1901 Dr. Gillis’ mother had moved to Muirkirk in Chatham-Kent. Dr. Gillis attended Aldborough Public School and Ridgetown High School. He graduated from the Chatham Normal School in 1902 and he became a school teacher in Muirkirk.
Dr. Gillis attended The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine and graduated M.B. in 1906. He initially practiced medicine in Coldwater, (Simcoe County) Ontario for a brief period of time, before moving to Ridgetown in 1907. According to the 1928 Ontario Medical Register, Dr. Gillis joined the College of Physicians and Surgeons on the 27th of June, 1907.
Dr. Gillis married Ethel Isabel McLean on the 8th of October, 1908 in Ridgetown. Mrs. Gillis was born on the 1st of January, 1885 in Norwich Twp, Oxford County. Her parents were Donald John McLean and the former Catherine Ann Mitton. According to the 1891 census, the McLean family lived in Ridgetown and her father was a merchant. Mrs. Gillis had a younger sister named Mary Grace Mclean who was born on the 30th of September, 1892.
Dr. Gillis purchased a home located at 66 Main Street East in Ridgetown in 1912. His office was located on the east side of the residence. Dr. Gillis appears in the 1913 Bell Telephone Directory. His office was located on Main Street and his telephone number was 11.
Dr. and Mrs. Gillis had 3 children; Donna Jean Gillis, Katherine Maxine Gillis and Margery Isabel Gillis.
Dr. Gillis was a member of the Ridgetown Public School Board for many years. He served as the President of the Kent County Medical Association in 1939. Dr. Gillis was a member of Rotary. Mrs. Gillis was a member of I.O.D.E.
Mrs. Gillis died at her residence in Ridgetown on the 18th of April, 1948. She was buried at Greenwood Cemetery (in Ridgetown).
Dr. Gillis married Sarah Estelle Liberty. She was born on the 12th of June, 1892 in Ottawa, Ontario. Mrs. Gillis was the youngest of 4 children born to Frank Liberty and the former Sarah Margaret Kimball. Her siblings were; Charles Hilton Liberty, Annie Irene Liberty and Florence Elvira Liberty. According to the 1891 census, her father was a hackman. He died when she was a little girl leaving her mother to support them as a charwoman. In 1935 Mrs. Gillis was residing at 325 Victoria Ave in Chatham and she was a registered nurse.
Dr. Gillis died at his residence in Ridgetown on the 4th of September, 1954. Dr. Gillis was buried next to his first wife at Greenwood Cemetery in Ridgetown. Mrs. Estelle Gillis died in Chatham on the 20th of April, 1981. She was buried at Maple Leaf Cemetery in Chatham.
Dr. Gillis’s mother Barbara (Crawford) Gillis, died in July of 1956 at the age of 101. At the time of her death she lived with her daughter Margaret on the 4th Concession of Orford Twp. A death notice appeared in the Windsor Star on the 12th of July, 1956 and it reported that when Mrs. Gillis celebrated her 100th birthday on the 7th of May, 1955, she had received messages from Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent and Premier Leslie Frost. Dr. Gillis’s parents were buried at the Duart Cemetery.
* His daughter Margery Isabel Gillis became a nurse and married Dr. John P. Wells of Chapleau, Ontario in 1933.
The photo below is of the home that Dr. Gillis purchased in 1912.