Edmund Bicknell 1846-1913


Pitcher Pedigree

Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892 & James Bicknell 1810-1895

William Pitcher 1775-1832 & Betsey Adams 1784-1861

William Pitcher 1747-1824 & Mary Metcalf 1752-1834

Samuel Pitcher 1722- & Mary Ellis 1728-1763

Edward Pitcher 1686-1773 & Jane Lyon 1688-1769

Samuel Pitcher 1641-1717 & Mary Blake 1654-1721


Bicknell Pedigree

James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892

James Bicknell 1776-1838 & Hannah Marshall 1779-1859

Joseph Bicknell 1754-1826 & Abigail Turner 1757-1840

Joseph Bicknell 1719-1782 & Jane Torrey 1722-1763

John Bicknell 1688-1779 & Hannah Humphrey 1692-1770

John Bicknell 1653-1737 & Sarah 1650-1730

John Bicknell 1623-1678 & Mary 1626-1658

Zachary Bicknell 1590-1637 & Agnis Lovell 1608-1643



“The History and Genealogy of the Bicknell Family and Some Collateral Lines”, please use this link at the Library of Congress:




“The Bicknells and the Family Reunion at Weymouth, Massachusetts, September 22, 1880” is available here:





Edmund Bicknell[1] was born in Belmont, Maine, the 2nd son of James Bicknell, Sr.[2] and his 2nd wife, Elvira Pitcher[3], who were married in Belmont on September 26, 1842.


James and Elvira Bicknell had five children born in Belmont: James Bicknell, Jr.[4], Edmund Bicknell, Ephraim Bicknell[5], who died at age 3 months; William P. Bicknell[6] and Annette E. Bicknell[7], known as Nellie E. Bicknell. Annette E. Bicknell never married, moved to California to live with her half-sister, Mary L. (Bicknell) Barker and died there at age 38.


James Bicknell, Sr. had first married Hannah McKeen[8] on May 7, 1837 in Belfast, Maine and they had a daughter Mary L. Bicknell[9]. Hannah Bicknell died at age 32, when her daughter, Mary was just a baby. Hannah Bicknell is buried in Hillside Cemetery in Belmont, Maine.


On October 19, 1856, Mary L. Bicknell married James Barker[10] and they moved to Pasadena, California after having two children born in Searsmont, Maine: Elvira C. Barker[11], who married Newton Stanger Leithead[12] in Pasadena and James Edmund Barker[13].


During the 1850 Census, Edmund Bicknell is known as Edmond Bicknell, age 3 living in Belmont with his parents, James Bicknell 39 and Alvira [sic] Bicknell 34, their other children Mary L. Bicknell 10 and James Bicknell 6. Hannah (Marshall[14]) Bicknell, James Bicknell’ mother, age 71, is also living with the family, along with Henry C. Wing 20.


In 1860, still known as Edmond Bicknell, age 14, living in Belmont with parents, James Bicknell 50, Elvira Bicknell 42, their children James Bicknell 17, William Bicknell 7, Anniette [sic] Bicknell 5, Hanah [sic] Bicknell 79 and Washington Childs, age 24.


James Bicknell, Jr. married his first cousin, Josephine S. Neal[15], on October 10, 1868 in Belmont. Josephine S. Neal was born in Morrill, Maine, the daughter of James Neal[16] and Harriet Pitcher[17], the older sister of Elvira Pitcher.


The daughter of James and Josephine Bicknell, Adelaide “Addie” Bicknell[18], was born in Lawrence. Addie was only 6 months old when her mother, Josephine died at age 29, in Lawrence. Josephine is buried in Morrill Village Cemetery, with her parents James and Harriet Neal.

James Bicknell, Jr. died in Lawrence at the age 62 of Apoplexy[19] and is buried in Bellevue Cemetery in Lawrence.


In 1870, in Belmont, Edmund is 23, living with his parents James 60, Elvira 52, siblings William 16 and Annette Bicknell 15. On December 4, 1874, Edmund Bicknell married Susan B. Dyer[20] in Searsmont, Maine.


Edmund and Susan Bicknell removed to Lawrence, Massachusetts before 1880, where he is known as Edward Bicknell 33, with wife Susan 23. Edmund Bicknell is employed as a “Clothier” during that census.


The biography of Edmund Bicknell is available here: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Bicknell-9

“Partner with brother James in Bicknell Brothers clothing of Lawrence, Massachusetts. Edmund Bicknell is a typical Bicknell of 'The Down East' type, and in his business life at Lawrence, Essex, Mass., in partnership with his older brother, James, he well illustrated what the Bicknells can do when they set out. Edmund had a good home on the farm at Belmont, with a good father and mother to make farm and home life interesting, but Edmund did not take to farm life any more joyfully than did his brother, James. What Edmund has to say about his early life is interesting reading, and it is inserted here, in part, to show some other boy how he got on. He writes: "I inherited his (Brother James') stock of discontent, which, added to my own, (for I had then been wearing long trousers a good spell), made me a discontented farmer of no small proportions. We both stuck to the farm until old enough to vote in town meeting."


"The firm of Bicknell Brothers has in the front rank of clothing merchants Massachusetts its record for fair dealing courtesy and uprightness in dealing unsurpassed its enterprise and energy unexcelled and, in many respects, unequalled. The Bicknell Brothers had the instinct of advertising and the business world concedes that the bright, catching, humorous advertising of this firm constituted its greatest asset, developing new business constantly and keeping their house in the lead. Edmund Bicknell, who has charge of the advertising, has a special gift for clever phrasing and attractive announcements — original unique fetching."

The youngest son of James Bicknell and Elvira Pitcher, William P. Bicknell 28, married Lillian Marriner[21] 18, on April 18, 1880. They live next door to his parents and sister Nellie E. Bicknell, age 25 in Belmont, during the 1880 Census. William P. Bicknell is a Farmer, like his father.


In 1900, in South Thomaston, Maine, William P. Bicknell claims to be 45 (actually 48), his wife Lillian Bicknell is 38 and their son, Lester M. Bicknell[22] is 17. William P. Bicknell is a Farmer.


On May 9, 1908, Leslie M. Bicknell 30 (25), married Annie Laroche[23] 40 (44), in Appleton, Maine. There is a record in Rockland, Maine on November 1, 1911 for Leslie M. Bicknell and Annie L. Laroche.


Leslie M. Bicknell 30, accidentally drowned at the head of the bay at South Thomaston. He was the husband of Annie L. Bickmore [sic].


In 1900, in Lawrence, Edward Bicknell is 54, Susan B. Bicknell is 44 and son Ralph E. Bicknell is 19. Also, in the household are Ruth Dyer Sargent[24] and Winthrop Otis Sargent[25], who are the niece and nephew of Susan B. Bicknell and the step-great niece and step-great nephew of Edmund Bicknell. The children’s step-grandfather is James Bicknell. Jr.


Ruth and Winthrop are the children of Winthrop Otis Sargent and Esther Farrar Dyer, the widow of Herbert Emory Bicknell, Edmund’s nephew. Esther F. Dyer was the sister of Susan B. (Dyer) Bicknell.


Edmund and Susan Bicknell had three sons born in Lawrence. Their oldest son, Ralph Edmund Bicknell[26], died in Colorado Springs, Colorado of Consumption, at age 22. Second son, Paul R. Bicknell[27] died at age 8 from Meningitis and the youngest, Philip D. Bicknell[28], born a week before their 21st wedding anniversary, died at age 1 in California.


Edmund Bicknell was a prominent citizen in Lawrence and was Vice-President and Director of the Lawrence National Bank and a Trustee of the Lawrence Savings Bank.


Edmund Bicknell and his family travelled widely, mostly to alleviate the worsening symptoms of their son Ralph’s struggle with lung disease, which began with a severe cold in March of 1896. In May of 1896, they were visiting Pasadena, California, venturing into the Sierra Madres Mountains, at an altitude of 4,000 feet. There, they constructed a cloth tent, in which they lived for five months. That is where their infant son, Philip D. Bicknell died. Seems negligent.


The following winter, in 1897, the family moved to a cottage in the foothills, at Altadena, California. In April, Edmund Bicknell and son, Ralph, made a trip to Yosemite Valley in a prairie schooner, covering 1170 miles in 50 days. In July, they returned to Lawrence.


Ralph Bicknell divided his time between his home at Granite Park in Lawrence, the White Mountains at Conway, New Hampshire and the seashore at Ogunquit, Maine. Until his health began to fail.


Ralph, accompanied by his mother, Susan, went to seek treatment at a first-class hotel designed especially for health-seekers in Denver, Colorado. In the spring of next year, they went to Guadalajara, Mexico, then returned to Colorado Springs and remained there until autumn.


Ralph Edmund Bicknell died in Colorado Springs, about eight years after first developing the debilitating lung ailment, which weakened him and claimed his life at the age of 22. Ralph E. Bicknell was buried in Bellevue Cemetery in Lawrence, with his two younger brothers.


In 1905, after Ralph Bicknell’s death, his father, Edmund compiled and published “Ralph’s Scrap Book”, available here at the Library of Congress: https://archive.org/details/cu31924028876569


The privately published book is detailed with letters and accompanied by numerous photographs taken by Ralph Bicknell.


In 1910, in Lawrence, Edmund is now known as Edwin Bicknell 63, with wife Susan Bicknell 53. Edmund Bicknell is still a clothing dealer.


In 1912, in Herringshaw’s American Blue-Book of Biography; Prominent Americans:


“Bicknell, Edmund, farmer, banker; born Belmont, Maine July 21, 1846; son of James and Elvira (Pitcher) Bicknell; educated in common and high schools of Waldo County, Maine; married, Searsmont, Maine, 1874, Susan B. Dyer; three sons (deceased). Engaged in farming twenty-one years; five years in manufacturing lime, fish and pork barrels; since 1872 a member and part owner in firm Bicknell Brothers, manufacturing retailers of men’s and boy’s clothing; also, men’s and boy’s outfitters; also engaged in teaching. Vice-president and director Lawrence National Bank; trustee Lawrence Savings Bank. Republican. Recreations: Golf, travel. Clubs: Home, Merrimac Country (Lawrence, Mass.); Home Market, Republican (Boston).”


In the coming year, Edmund Bicknell would commit suicide in Lawrence, by drowning himself at his home at 19 Bellevue Street, perhaps in his own bathtub? He was 66 years old and left only his wife Susan (Dyer) Bicknell and a younger brother, William Bicknell of Maine.


Edmund Bicknell was predeceased by his mother, Elvira (Pitcher) Bicknell in 1892 and father, James Bicknell in 1895; three sons, Paul R. Bicknell in 1894, Phillip D. Bicknell in 1896 and Ralph E. Bicknell in 1904; also, his older brother and business partner, James Bicknell in 1906.


From the Andover Townsmen on May 23, 1913, page 7.


“The funeral of the late Edmund Bicknell, one of the most prominent citizens of Lawrence and formerly a member of the well-known clothing firm of Bicknell Bros., took place Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock from the late residence, corner of Haverhill and Bellevue streets, Tower hill.” https://mhl.org/sites/default/files/newspapers/ATM-1913-05.pdf


The stately Victorian house, once home to Edmund and Susan Bicknell and their children, still stands at 19 Bellevue Street. A short distance away is a street named Bicknell Terrace, no doubt for them.


Susan Bicknell continued to live in Lawrence and then moved to Methuen, Massachusetts before the 1930 Census. She died at age 77. At Tower Hill, there is Bellevue Cemetery, where the entire Edmund Bicknell family are buried.


The Bicknell Clock is now located at Heritage Park in Lawrence. It is a free-standing clock, built on January 1, 1885, still operational today.


“The Bicknell Brothers were clothiers, opening up their shop in 1879. In 1997 the clock was moved from downtown Lawrence, restored and placed in its present location at the state park.”


The shop was originally located at 469 and 471 Essex Street.








[1] Edmund Bicknell b Jul 23, 1846 d May 15, 1913; son of James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892

[2] James Bicknell b Jun 16, 1810 d Jan 3, 1895; son of James Bicknell 1775-1838 & Hannah Marshall 1779-1859

[3] Elvira Pitcher b Apr 1, 1818 d Jan 14, 1892; dau of William Pitcher 1775-1832 & Betsey Adams 1784-1861

[4] James Bicknell b Jan 4, 1844 d May 18, 1906; son of James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892

[5] Ephraim Bicknell b Oct 23, 1849 d Jan 31, 1850; son of James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892

[6] William Bicknell b Jan 14, 1852 d Aug 15, 1922; son of James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892

[7] Annette E. Bicknell b May 28, 1855 d Dec 1893; dau of James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Elvira Pitcher 1818-1892

[8] Hannah P. McKeen b 1809 d Jun 15, 1841; dau? of Abner G. McKeen 1774-1820 & Sarah Patterson 1779-1813

[9] Mary L. Bicknell b Feb 2, 1840 d Oct 3, 1929; dau of James Bicknell 1810-1895 & Hannah P. McKean -1842

[10] James Barker b Oct 10, 1828 d Nov 9, 1909; son of Israel Barker 1804-1872 & Caroline Nye 1804-1834

[11] Elvira C. Barker b Jun 22, 1874 d Jun 23, 1948; dau of James Barker 1828-1909 & Mary L. Bicknell 1840-1929

[12] Newton Leithead b Aug 19, 1871 d Aug 4, 1957; son of Robert Leithead 1832-1913 & Catherine Wood 1836-1918

[13] James E. Barker b Sep 14, 1878 d Dec 19, 1927; son of James Barker 1828-1909 & Mary L. Bicknell 1840-1929

[14] Hannah Marshall b Jul 10, 1779 d May 6, 1859; dau of Samuel Marshall & Sarah French

[15] Josephine S. Neal b Nov 2, 1845 d Jan 1875; dau of James Neal 1813-1902 & Harriet Pitcher 1816-1905

[16] James M. Neal b Dec 28, 1813 d 1902; son of John Neal 1779-1835 & Mary Furbish 1778-1855

[17] Harriet Pitcher b Jun 21, 1816 d 1905; dau of William Pitcher 1775-1832 & Betsey Adams 1784-1861

[18] Adelaide Bicknell b Aug 25, 1874 d 1940+; dau of James Bicknell 1844-1906 & Josephine S. Neal 1845-1875

[19] Apoplexy: incapacity resulting from a cerebral hemorrhage or stroke

[20] Susan Bennet Dyer b Apr 21, 1856 d 1933; dau of George Dyer 1815-1897 & Ruth A. Boardman 1823-1890

[21] Lillian L. Marriner b Feb 1862 d 1949; dau of William Franklen Marriner 1828-1907 & Mary C. Brackett 1839-1882

[22] Leslie Marriner Bicknell b June 1883 d Mar 3, 1914; son of William Bicknell 1852-1922 & Lillian Marriner 1862-1959

[23] Annie Laurie Drake b Jul 26, 1866 d 1914+; dau of Washington R. Drake 1841-1915 & Sarah J. Smith 1847-1903

[24] Ruth Dyer Sargent b May 27, 1893 d 1957+; dau of Winthrop O. Sargent 1859- & Esther F. Dyer 1860-1899

[25] Winthrop Otis Sargent, Jr. b May 19, 1897 d May 31, 1975; son of Winthrop O. Sargent 1859- & Esther F. Dyer 1860-1899

[26] Ralph E. Bicknell b Oct 31, 1881 d Mar 31, 1904; son of Edmund Bicknell 1846-1913 & Susan Dyer 1856-1933

[27] Paul R. Bicknell b Dec 1, 1886 d May 6, 1894; son of Edmund Bicknell 1846-1913 & Susan Dyer 1856-1933

[28] Philip Dyer Bicknell b Nov 30, 1895 d Sep 4, 1896; son of Edmund Bicknell 1846-1913 & Susan Dyer 1856-1933

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