E. H. Lestock Gregory, now General Agent for the Aetna Life Insurance Company for California and Nevada, was born on the 29th of October, 1870, at Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, his parents being Silas E. and Emma Gregory. The father was a prominent commission merchant and in the family were a number of members prominent in government service. Hon. John U. Gregory, an uncle of our subject, was department minister of Marine and Fisheries, while a first cousin, Sir Adam Wilson, was Chief Justice of Canada and the maternal grandfather, Judge O'Reilly, was Master of Chancery.
Mr. Gregory, having mastered the elementary branches of learning, became a student in the Upper Canada College and also continued his studies in Trinity University, both institutions being located in Toronto, Canada. He left school at the age of nineteen years, and in 1891 was appointed private secretary to Lieutenant Governor Schultz, of Manitoba, but after filling that position for some time he resigned and went to Vancouver, British Columbia, where for a few months he was in the service of the Canadian Pacific Railroad Company. he then accepted a position as head bookkeeper with the Mutual Life Insurance Company of New York at Seattle, and in 1893 resigned to take up the active work in the field as insurance solicitor for the same company. In the year following he organized a staff of sub-agents, soliciting larger lines of life insurance, covering the entire territory of North America, including Canada, United States and Mexico. This he continued until October, 1899, when he resigned to accept the appointment from the Equitable Life Assurance Society as Inspector of Agencies for California, Nevada, and the Hawaiian Islands, which position he filled until September, 1900, when he resigned inorder to accept the position of Assistant Manager of the Aetna Life Insurance Company for California and Nevada. He continued thus to serve until June, 1901, when, upon the death of the former manager, H. B. Houghton, he was appointed General Agent for the two states mentioned. He is to-day one of the foremost representatives of insurance in the great West, having a close and intimate knowledge of the business in every principle and detail, so that he is enabled to carefully direct the labors of his men and to supervise the multitudinous duties which are connected with a business of this character. He is splendidly equipped by business training, has natural talent and well developed powers for the imporrtant task which devolves upon him and has made for himself a most creditable record in insurance circles.
On the 29th of February, 1892, Mr. Gregory was united in marriage to Miss Grace Tyner, a native of Wisconsin and a daughter of Louis Tyner, who was a large lumberman and was also widely known in political and public life as well as in business circles. To Mr. and Mrs. Gregory has been born a daughter, Vivian Emma Grace, now ten years of age. On coming to the United States in 1892 Mr. Gregory took out naturalization papers and is most loyal to the interests of his adopted city, his co-operation being over along lines of advancement and improvement. In studying the history of successful men one is impressed with the fact that there are no rules for building characters, that there is no rule for achieving success. The man who can rise from the ranks to a position of eminence is he who can see and utilize the opportunities that surround his path. The essential conditions of human life are ever the same, the surroundings of individuals differ but slightly, and when one man passes another on the highway to reach the goal of prosperity before others who perhaps started out ahead of him it is because he has the power to use advantages which probably encompass the whole human race. To-day among the most prominent of the younger business men on the Pacific coast stands Mr. Gregory, and his history cannot fail to be of widespread interest, for he ranks high in insurance circles and has gained the respect and confidence of all his business associates.
Source: History of the New California Its Resources and People, Volume II
The Lewis Publishing Company - 1905
Edited by Leigh H. Irvine
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