Edwin M. Bray, proprietor of the El Paso Smelter Store at El Paso, Texas, was born at La Harpe, Hancock county, Illinois, and is a son of T. S. and Emma (Leavitt) Bray. The father, now deceased, was a native of Pennsylvania, but spent the greater part of his life in Illinois, where the mother still resides. She was born in that state but came of New England ancestry. At the family home in Hancock county Edwin Bray remained until eighteen years of age, when he came to New Mexico, locating at Socorro, where for several years he was engaged in merchandising. In 1895 he came to El Paso, where he embarked in the same line of business, and here he has since made his home. He is now the owner and proprietor of the El Paso Smelter Store, located at the immense works of the El Paso Consolidated Kansas City Smelting & Refining Company, which constantly employs over fifteen hundred men. The store is a general one, in which he carries a large line of clothing and dry goods, as well as groceries and meats. His patronage is extensive and the business has reached a large figure so that Mr. Bray is now deriving a good income from his investment. He is also prominently connected with the business life of El paso in other ways and has been the promoter of many measures which have had tangible effect upon the upbuilding and development of the city. He was formerly president of the El Paso Chamber of Commerce, and he is now the president of the El Paso Young Men’s Christian Association, which has already raised forty thousand dollars for the erection of a new building and is now engaged in an effort to raise twenty thousand dollars more.
Mr. Bray was married to Miss Fannie Spaulding, a representative of a prominent Maine family and they have two children, John Spaulding and Vonia. The parents are members of the Presbyterian church of El Paso and Mr. Bray is prominent in Masonry, being past commander of the Knights Templar and he has also attained the thirty-second degree Scottish Rite. His interest in his city and the welfare of his fellow men is deep and sincere and while carefully conducting his business affairs he has also found time and opportunity for co-operation in those movements, which uplift mankind and advance the intellectual and moral growth of the city.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. I, pp. 543-544.