Know Your Neighbours – Prynce Nesbitt

2007-78-1A-piece of his art
Painting by Nesbitt. Photo Attribution: St. Catharines Museum, 2007.78.1

Prynce Nesbitt was born in Merritton in 1908 and was named after a dog his mother once owned and loved. He was a successful musician, painter, historian and astrologer. He was also a choir director and organist for more than 20 years at St. James Anglican Church.

Nesbitt also taught piano and was on staff for the Lincoln Board of Education, teaching music and art extension courses. Nesbitt taught night courses at Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School. He Lived on Oakdale Drive in St. Catharines. He died in 1973 at the age of 64 at the St. Catharines General Hospital.

2002-196-17-1A-his glasses
Nesbitt’s glasses. Photo Attribution: St. Catharines Museum, 2002.196.17




The St. Catharines Museum and Welland Canals Centre, located next to Lock 3 of the historic Welland Canal, is a leading local history museum and community gathering place, engaging visitors and building relationships with partners, while demonstrating curatorial leadership and innovative programming and exhibits. The St. Catharines Museum is dedicated to engaging visitors in the celebration of our local stories and the cultural identity and history of the City. We are a community resource that interprets, exhibits, researches, acquires, and preserves material culture and stories of St. Catharines.


  1. Curious about the identity of the gentleman in the portrait. Is this a self-portrait, do you know? Or someone else?


    • This portrait is of a gentleman by the name of Gary Peschell. The portrait was given to Beulah Peschell (Gary’s mother) by Nesbitt. It was painted over another portrait of Gary Peschell, wearing a uniform of the Duke of Wellington. Gary Peschell donated the piece of art to the St. Catharines Museum in 2007.

  2. My father was an old friend, He roomed at my Dad,s boathouse in Port… exchange for Rent he painted my fathers portrait..which hung in our home for my whole life…. My father left it to my daughter….. and it,s a wonderful gift…..

    • Hi, Paula. I’d love to see a photo of the picture some day. Prynce was a family acquaintance, because everybody in Merritton knew everybody in Merritton!

  3. Knew Prynce as well as anyone did. I cut his lawn and in lieu of payment he tried to teach me how to play the piano !! When I lifeguarded at Municipal Beach, he would come down and paiint a portrait of the lifeguard cabin –it was torn down many years later.I believe that Debbie Pratt (formerly of Inniskillen Winery) still has the picture.

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