Edward J. Curtin, who in the practice of law has gained wide recognition of his ability to present with clearness and force any cause which engages his attention and his powers, was born in Jackson county, Missouri, August 9, 1875. He is one of a family of eight children, all of whom are yet living and of whom he is the fourth in order of birth. His parents are Cornelius and Elizabeth (McKenna) Curtin, both of whom are natives of Ireland. The father came to the United States in his boyhood days, first settling in New York and afterward removing to Missouri. His life has been devoted to agricultural pursuits until recent years and he is now living retired. The mother also survives and thus in a family numbering ten members death has never severed the family ties.
Edward J. Curtin was educated in the district schools of Jackson county and afterward attended St. Joseph’s school, conducted by the Roman Catholic church in Kansas City. Of this institution he is a graduate. When his textbooks were put aside he secured employment in a retail shoe store, where he remained for twelve years, winning substantial advancement in that connection. It was his desire, however, to turn from commercial to professional interests, and with laudable ambition to become a member of the bar, he read law and afterward matriculated in the Kansas City School of Law, from which he was graduated in 1904 with the LL. B. degree. In the same year he was admitted to practice and for a number of years followed his profession in partnership with Frank P. Walsh. Since that time he has practiced alone and has long enjoyed an extensive clientage. His ability and high standing at the bar are indicated in the fact that for twelve consecutive years he filled the office of assistant prosecuting attorney for Jackson county through appointment. In the courts he is ready for any emergency, for he always prepares his cases with great thoroughness and care and is never surprised by the unexpected attack of an opponent.
In 1909 Mr. Curtin was married to Miss Margaret McKenna, a native of Jefferson City, Missouri. He greatly enjoys various phases of outdoor life and is a devotee of the national game of baseball. In politics he is an active supporter of the democratic party. He belongs to the Knights of Columbus, to the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, to the Kansas City Athletic Club and along strictly professional lines has connection with the Missouri State Bar Association and the Kansas City Bar Association. While the interests and activities of his life are varied enough to make his a well rounded character, it is the profession of law that claims the major part of his time and attention, and year after year his ability in this field is increasing through his experience and broad study, which has thoroughly acquainted him with precedent and principle.