Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens
Lawrence County Pennsylvania 1897
[p. 185] Prominent among the successful professional men of Ellwood City, who by carefully diagnosing his cases, and bringing his knowledge to bear in their treatment, has established a reputation second to none in the city or in the vicinity, is the subject of this sketch. He is indigenous to this part of Pennsylvania, as he began life near Mercer, Mercer Co., Pa. He is descended from George W. and Jane (Johnston) Shannon, and back one generation from John and Nancy (Ross) Shannon. The grandparents lived on a farm in Mercer County, although Mrs. Shannon was born in Crawford County. They were people of the persevering, patient type, that make haste slowly but surely in the matter of accumulating wealth. They removed to Sandy Lake about 1872, where they spent the closing days of life. There is a remarkable record in the Shannon family, and that is that of fourteen children, only one is deceased, and the eldest was sixty-three years of age in 1897. The twelve [sic] of the family now living are: James, George W., William, Robert John, Samuel, Thomas, Jane, Emeline, Mary, Rachel, Lizzie, Lavina, and Nancy.
George W. Shannon, the Doctor's father, when he started out for himself, bought a farm near Mercer, where he still resides, and where he is engaged in breeding horses, and in carrying on general farming. He learned correct methods from his father, and sound judgment aided his natural taste for agriculture, so that in time he became one of the solid and reliable men of Mercer County. His name was on the drafted list during the Rebellion, but he was not called on for active service. In his political preferences he is a stanch Republican, and zealously upholds the principles brought forward by that party. His wife's early home was in Pittsburg. They have five children, all of whom are living, namely: William A., the subject of this article; Agnes; James J., a dentist of Ellwood City, Pa.; Gilbert L.; and David E.
Dr. Shannon attended the public schools until he was seventeen years of age. He made up his mind to enter a profession, and after much serious thought he selected the medical as being the best fitted for his tastes, as well as his being adapted to it. His youth was filled with plans for his career, and he took up teaching as a means to the desired end. To better prepare himself for his profession as well as for teaching, he entered Grove City College, and progressed through the regular course, teaching school in the summer, and was graduated in 1888 at the head of his class. In 1888-89 he was principal of the Sheffield school, where he discharged his duties as a pedagogue to the eminent satisfaction of the school patrons. The next year he resumed his medical studies, becoming a student in the Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, and taking up his work with earnestness and vim. He was granted a degree in 1892, and at once began his practice in Porterville,[sic] Butler Co., Pa. In a few months he was drawn by the superior attractions of Ellwood City, and the prospect of a good field, to change his residence and build up a new patronage. Having had the advantage of late discoveries in his medical training, and having adopted improved methods in the science of healing, he was able to treat properly difficult cases that came to his notice that might well have puzzled a more experienced man. In medicine as in other employments, if a man would rise, he must work, and he will ever find plenty of room at the top. Dr. Shannon is recognized as one who is bound to win; he has taken his place in the county as one who has come to stay, and is quietly engaged in attending to the stream of practice that is converging in his direction. He is well-read, a deep and logical thinker, with good judgment, and keen, trustworthy good common sense. These qualities, united to fine social address, tend to make him popular and command for him the confidence and esteem of the whole community. Possessing a strong ambition, and a high standard of professional excellence, with the sympathy of a noble and womanly life-companion, he is well-fitted to attain a front rank in his chosen profession, and to secure in short time the permanent rewards of a successful career. The Doctor is Republican in his political preferences, but he has not had the time for aspirations in the field of political favor, as he places his profession emphatically before every other interest. He is a member of the Lawrence County Medical Society. In fraternal orders is a member of K. P., Alma Lodge, No. 420, of Ellwood City; Ellwood City Lodge, F. & A. M., No. 599; and I. O. O. F., Glen Park Lodge, No. 1016, of Ellwood City.
Dr. Shannon was fortunate in his selection of a wife in the person of Miss Clara Koerner, an amiable and accomplished young lady of Allegheny, Pa. Dr. and Mrs. Shannon have a sweet little daughter, Marian E., who came to the home on Dec. 17, 1895, and claimed their love and devotion.
Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens Lawrence County Pennsylvania
Biographical Publishing Company, Buffalo, N.Y., 1897
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Updated: 4 May 2001