Part 9 out of 11
of the population and wealth of the city. Oil refineries grew up rapidly
like mushrooms in the valleys and ravines around, and lined the railroad
tracks, but, unlike mushrooms, did not disappear with equal rapidity. A
great number of people found employment in this new industry, and wealth
poured in with greater volume from this source than had ever been known to
flow from any species of trade or manufacture hitherto established. From
this time the future of Cleveland was assured. Year by year it has grown
with astonishing increase and new manufactories of every description are
springing up on every side. The flats that had lain deserted and of but
little value were brought into requisition for iron furnaces and iron
mills, and wherever lands could be had at reasonable rates in convenient
neighborhood to transportation lines, factories of some kind were
The four or five small iron manufactories in and about Cleveland in 1837,
have grown to fourteen rolling mills, having two hundred puddling furnaces
and a daily capacity of four hundred tons of finished iron, not including
the nails spikes, nuts, bolts, horseshoes, &c. Several of these mills own
their own blast furnaces, and nearly all have coal mines of their own.
There are also five stove foundries; one malleable iron works; one axe and
tool company; half a dozen boiler plate and sheet iron works of large
capacity; nearly as many factories of steam engines of all descriptions,
and other machinery; three foundries for making car wheels and castings
for buildings; one large manufactory of cross cut, circular and other
saws, and several saw and file works of smaller dimensions.
Although the operations of domestic iron works were seriously affected by
the large increase of importations from Europe, the following amount of
iron was produced from the mills of Cleveland in 1868:
Pig Iron 11,037 Tons.
Rail Road Iron 22,344 "
Merchant Iron 11,396 "
Boiler, Tank and Sheet Iron 2,676 "
Forgings 4,125 "
Nuts, Washers, Rests, Nails and Spikes 5,607 "
Machinery Castings 18,250 "
Wire 865 "
Making a total of 76,300 tons. To produce this it is estimated that
225,000 tons of coal and coke were consumed. The stove foundries produced
nearly 35,000 stoves, with the attendant hardware and stove furniture;
requiring nearly 10,000 tons of metal, and 4,000 tons of coal and coke,
and giving employment to about five hundred persons.
The planing mills and wooden ware manufactures give direct employment to
six hundred and fifty persons, and the year's business exceeded a
The growth and magnitude of the petroleum business of Cleveland can be
seen by the reports of receipts and shipments during the past four years:
Date. Crude Received Refined Forwarded
1865 220,000 bbls. 145,000 bbls.
1866 613,247 " 402,430 "
1867 693,100 " 496,600 "
1868 956,479 " 776,356 "
Between three and four millions of dollars of capital are invested in this
business in Cleveland, and the annual product will not fall short of ten
or twelve millions of dollars. The rapid increase of the business created
an urgent demand for barrels. The receipts of staves in 1868, mainly to
supply this demand, were nearly three times in excess of the previous
year. Some 3,000 tons of hoop iron were required for barrels.
It is impossible to give, in the absence of any recent exact census, full
and correct statistics of the number and classification of the
manufactories of Cleveland, the capital invested, and the value of the
product. It has, however, been estimated from the best data that could be
procured, that the grand total value of all the manufactories of the city
in 1868, was not less than sixty millions of dollars, and it is daily
William B. Castle.
William B. Castle was born in Essex, Crittenden county, Vermont, November
30, 1814. Immediately on the conclusion of the war, his father removed to
Toronto, where he had been engaged, as an architect, to superintend the
construction of the first Parliament buildings there. In 1827, he removed
with his family to Cleveland, William B. Castle being then thirteen years
old. His father had taken a farm about thirteen miles from the city, and
there the lad spent most of his time until 1832, when, in company with his
father and Mr. Charles M. Giddings, he established the first lumber-yard
in Cleveland. The business was carried on for a couple of years, when Mr.
Castle, Sen., died, and the son removed to Canada, engaging in
merchandizing and in manufacturing lumber for the yard in Cleveland. In
1839, he abandoned the Canada branch of the business, and in the following
year the partnership with Mr. Giddings was dissolved.
A new partnership was formed with a brother-in-law, under the name of
Castle & Field, for carrying on the hardware, in connection with jewelry
and watch making, business, on the west side of the river, then known as
Ohio City. In 1843, he left the business and entered the Cuyahoga Steam
Furnace Company, with which he has ever since been connected. So
thoroughly identified has Mr. Castle been with the history of that
establishment during the past quarter of a century, that this is a fitting
place for a brief sketch of the nature and history of the pioneer iron
company of Cleveland.
In 1830, Mr. Charles Hoyt projected the works which were erected and put
in operation under the firm name of Hoyt, Railey & Co. In 1834, the firm
was changed to an incorporated company under the name of the Cuyahoga
Steam Furnace Company, with a capital of one hundred thousand dollars, of
which three-fourths were paid in. The principal stockholders at the time
of the incorporation were Josiah Barber, Richard Lord, John W. Allen, and
Charles Hoyt. The managing officer was Charles Hoyt. Soon after the
incorporation the works were burned to the ground, but the company were
energetic, and soon a substantial brick structure, two hundred and
thirty-five feet front, with a wing of ninety feet deep, was erected on
the site of the destroyed building. The pig metal for the use of the works
was obtained at the company's blast furnace at Dover, twelve miles west,
and was considered equal in quality to the best Scotch pig. In 1840, Mr.
Hoyt was succeeded in the management by D. Cushing, who had been secretary
of the company. In 1843, Mr. Cushing gave place to Elisha T. Sterling, who
remained the head of the concern until his untimely death, in 1859.
[Illustration: Yours Truly, W. B. Castle]
From the advent of Mr. Sterling and the consequent re-organization of the
staff of officers of the works, dates the connection of Mr. Castle with
the establishment. Mr. Castle took the position of secretary, and held
that post until the death of Mr. Sterling, when he was appointed to fill
the position of manager. At the time when the sole charge of the works
devolved upon him the company was in a deplorable financial condition. The
prospect was sufficient to daunt a less resolute and hopeful spirit, but
Mr. Castle at once set about the Herculean task of bringing the concern
through its difficulties and establishing it on a firm financial basis.
The struggle was long continued, and more than once the advance gained
seemed suddenly to be again lost, but eventually it was pulled through
without having compromised a single debt, and without having but a single
case of litigation under his management. This case was not properly
chargable to the administration of the works, as it arose from the
supplying of a defective beam strap, which, there being then no forges in
Cleveland, had been ordered from Pittsburgh. This unusual exemption from
litigation was, doubtless, owing to the invariable rule adopted by Mr.
Castle, to reduce all contracts to careful writing and to live strictly up
to the letter as well as spirit of the contract.
The heavy work of the establishment in its early years was the supplying
of most of the mills in Ohio and the new States of the West with mill
gearing, and the manufacture of agricultural implements. In 1840, was
commenced the manufacture of stationary and land steam engines. In 1843,
the manufacture of marine engines was commenced by building the engine for
the first propeller on Lake Erie, the "Emigrant." About the same time work
was commenced on engines for the large side-wheel steamers, the largest of
their day being fitted out with machinery from these works. Among the
steamers thus equipped, and which were in their successive days the
wonders of the lakes, was the Europe, Saratoga, Hendrick Hudson, Pacific,
Avon, and Ohio. Among the propellers receiving their engines from the
Cuyahoga Works were the Winslow, Idaho, Dean Richmond, Ironsides, S. D.
Caldwell, Meteor, and a very large number of others, besides a great many
first-class steam tugs plying on Detroit river.
In 1853, the introduction of the manufacture of locomotives added a new
feature to the manufacturing industry of Cleveland. The Cleveland,
Columbus and Cincinnati Railroad was supplied from these works, and
locomotives were also made for the Cleveland and Pittsburgh, Lake Shore,
Cleveland and Toledo, and Bellefontaine and Indianapolis Railroads,
besides several other railroads in the west. In 1857, this branch of the
business was sold out to the Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati Railroad
Company, who now use the locomotive works for the manufacture and repair
of their own engines.
In addition to the marine engines, for which the establishment has become
famous, the company have lately entered upon the manufacture of first
class engines and blowing machines for blast furnaces. These have been
supplied to the furnaces in the Mahoning Valley and Wisconsin, and to
furnaces elsewhere, even supplying Pittsburgh, the home of the iron
manufacture. A very large engine has been constructed for the Atlantic
Docks, in Brooklyn, New York. Rolling mill engines and machinery have been
made for mills at Alliance, in the Tuscarawas Valley, at Harmony, Indiana,
and at Escanaba, in the Lake Superior iron district. Various engines have
been supplied to the Newburgh works, including the blowing engines and
hydraulic cranes for the Bessemer steel works, among the most perfect of
their kind in America. Railway tools manufactured by the company's works
have been ordered from so far east as New Jersey.
The Cuyahoga Steam Furnace Company have employed at times two hundred and
fifty men, and will probably average one hundred and fifty. Year after
year the company have been compelled to enlarge their facilities, until
now their property occupies the two corners of Detroit and Centre streets,
and one corner of Centre and West River streets. The buildings extend
three hundred and fifty feet on the river, and to a greater length on
Detroit street. The capital employed amounts to about a quarter of a
million dollars. The importance of these works in attracting attention and
capital to Cleveland, in giving employment to the people, and in assisting
to build up the business of the city, can hardly be overestimated. Taking
its nature, extent and history together it may probably be said with
safety that nothing in the city has had a more important influence in
shaping the future of Cleveland and contributing to its present
prosperity, and much of this influence is due to the labor and wisdom of
Mr. Castle. At present the works are organized under the presidency of Mr.
Castle, with Josephus Holloway as superintendant and designing engineer;
S. J. Lewis, secretary; W. W. Castle, book-keeper. From 1843 to 1857, the
superintendent and designing engineer, was Mr. Ethan Rogers, who by his
knowledge and skill added very much to the celebrity of the works.
In 1853, Mr. Castle was elected mayor of Ohio City, and during his term
of office the consolidation of the two cities was effected. To bring
about this desirable end he labored diligently, and was one of the
commissioners for settling the terms of annexation. In 1855, he was
elected mayor of the Consolidated city, and his rule was marked by vigor,
justice, and a strict regard for the rights and interests of the
citizens. For six years subsequent to his mayoralty he held the office of
commissioner of water works.
Mr. Castle was married in December, 1836, to Miss Mary Derby, who died in
Canada in the following year. In 1840, he was married to Miss Mary H.
Newell, of Vermont, by whom he has had one son and three daughters. The
son, W. W. Castle, now twenty-six, is book-keeper of the Cuyahoga Steam
Furnace Company. The oldest daughter is wife of Mr. Robert R. Rhodes, of
Cleveland. The youngest daughters are still at school.
The success of Mr. Castle has been achieved by a persistent struggle
against adverse circumstances and with but little to aid him but a
resolute will and good constitution. At an early age he was left with the
care of his father's family on his hands, and has had to fight, not only
his own battles, but to struggle with the difficulties into which
circumstances had thrown the company with which he became connected. Out
of the struggle he has come with a spotless reputation, the esteem of his
friends and the respect of his fellow-citizens, financial prosperity, and
the blessing of good health and undiminished vigor.
Charles Jarvis Woolson.
On the sixth of August, 1869, the citizens of Cleveland were surprised and
pained at the announcement of the death, on the morning of that day, of
Charles Jarvis Woolson, one of the most active and respected business men
of the city. Few were aware of his illness, and even by those acquainted
with the facts his death, up to within a very short time of the event, was
Mr. Woolson was born in Chester, Vermont, and received careful educational
training, the family being in good circumstances. His father was engaged
in various manufacturing enterprises, including cotton and wool fabrics,
and the making of machine and hand cards. He was one of the very earliest
manufacturers of cooking stoves in the country.
At the age of nineteen, Mr. Woolson went into business on his own account,
choosing the newspaper profession instead of manufactures for his _debut._
His first venture was as editor and publisher of a newspaper in Grafton
county, New Hampshire. Two years later, he sold out and removed to
Virginia, where he assumed charge of the Charlotteville Advocate. But the
political and social atmosphere of the South was uncongenial to one born
and bred in the free air of Vermont. He could neither feel nor affect to
feel anything but abhorrence of the "institution," and so he soon
terminated his connection with the press of Virginia, and returned to the
land of churches, free schools and free speech. In 1830, he married Miss
Pomeroy, of Cooperstown, New York, and removing to Keene, New Hampshire,
engaged in mercantile business; but he who has once dabbled in journalism
imbibes a taste which it is difficult afterwards to eradicate. Mr. Woolson
was not at home in a mercantile store, and before long he purchased the
New England Palladium, a Boston daily newspaper, and conducted it for two
years, when he bade a final adieu to journalism as a profession, disposing
of his property in the Palladium and removing to Claremont, New Hampshire,
where he engaged with his father in the manufacture of stoves. Here he
remained until 1840, when he removed to Cleveland, taking with him the
patterns and materials connected with the stove business, and commenced
on his own account in a small way, his capital having been seriously
crippled by the financial convulsion of 1837.
Mr. Woolson had, in 1845, succeeded in getting his business into a
flourishing condition, when, through the defalcation of a trusted partner,
he was very nearly ruined. But he did not stop his works one day on
account of this disaster. Collecting together his scattered resources, he
set to work all the harder, and as the Fall of the year approached, had
succeeded in accumulating a fine stock of wares for the Fall trade, which
he had stored in a warehouse at the rear of his factory, but which he
neglected to insure. A fire broke out, and the building, with its
contents, was completely destroyed, resolving the valuable stoves into a
heap of old iron. Even this did not stop the works. With his
characteristic energy, Mr. Woolson had the ground cleared and set to work
with redoubled zeal, making new stoves out of the old iron, and succeeded
in doing a tolerable business that winter, in spite of his accumulation of
When Mr. Woolson commenced business in Cleveland, it was but a lively
village. His stove foundry, the first of importance in northern Ohio, when
running to its full capacity, employed but ten hands, and its trade was
limited to the immediate vicinity, and a few towns on the canal. But few
of the farmers then used cooking stoves, the fire on the hearth serving
for all purposes of cooking and warming. The works now employ about one
hundred hands when running full, and the customers are found in Chicago,
St. Louis, Kansas, Nebraska, Minnesota and Iowa. The firm was changed
several years since to Woolson & Hitchcock, and subsequently to Woolson,
Hitchcock & Carter. Death removed the senior and junior partners of the
firm within a few months of each other.
Mr. Woolson's death was caused by erysipelas, brought on by debility;
after an illness of two weeks the disease yielded to medical treatment,
and he seemed to gain strength rapidly. On Saturday, the 31st of July,
he joined a party of friends and drove in his buggy twenty miles into
the country, believing that the fresh air would invigorate him as it had
done many times before when his health gave way. But the old remedy
failed, and, leaving his horse behind, Mr. Woolson took the cars and
reached home in the evening very much exhausted. After lingering five
days, typhoid symptoms appeared, and at eight o'clock Friday morning he
died, unconscious, and without suffering, after a life of 63 years and
Mr. Woolson possessed a very genial and sociable disposition, was highly
intelligent and well informed, and in spite of an infirmity of deafness
was a charming companion. His business qualifications are proven by the
success of the establishment he founded, in spite of the succession of
unforeseen and unavoidable disasters with which it had to contend. He was
a man of very domestic habits, and these habits were mellowed and refined
by many family losses that might have crushed one less hopeful, and less
patient and uncomplaining. To his family he was entirely devoted, and all
the affection of a loving household clustered around him with an intensity
that made the blow of his sudden loss one peculiarly hard to be borne.
Mr. Woolson had long been connected with Grace Church (Episcopal), of
which he was senior warden, and very tender domestic ties, sundered by
death some years since, made that church peculiarly dear to him.
William Hart, son of Judah Hart, of English descent, was born in Norwich,
Connecticut, in the year 1811. About the year 1821, Judah Hart removed to
the West with his family, settling in Brownhelm, Lorain county, where he
died two years after, and one year from this time, William changed his
residence to Cleveland. Soon after the arrival of the Harts in Cleveland,
Governor Clinton, of New York, came to Ohio to formally commence the work
of constructing the Ohio Canal, which was begun on the fourth of July,
1825. Governor Clinton landed in Cleveland in June, and one of the
principal incidents of Mr. Hart's recollection of his early days in
Cleveland, was the general turning out of the people to receive and
welcome the father of internal improvements. Cleveland was then but an
insignificant village, a place "six miles from Newburg, where steamboats
stopped to wood and water," but great, and well-founded hopes were
entertained of the benefits to flow from the opening of the canal, and the
people were therefore much elated at the arrival of Governor Clinton, who
was to commence the important work, and whose influence had done so much
to aid the enterprise.
[Illustration: Yours Truly, Wm. Hart]
About this time young Hart went to live with Asabel Abel, to whom he was
apprenticed for the purpose of learning the business of cabinet making.
When the term of his apprenticeship had expired, he set up in business on
his own account, at first opening his modest store and workshop on the
site of the present Birch House, and subsequently, after five or six years
of business, removing his location to the opposite side of the street, on
the spot now occupied by his present warehouse.
In 1852, a fire swept away his entire establishment, destroying
ware-rooms, factory, and all the appurtenances, and throwing out of
employment the twenty hands of which his force of workmen then consisted.
In the succeeding year, he rebuilt the warehouse and factory on a greatly
enlarged scale, and has since still further enlarged and improved the
buildings, until, in size and commodiousness, they are not excelled in
the city. At present, seventy-five hands are employed in the
establishment, aided by the most improved descriptions of labor-saving
machinery adapted to the business, and the annual sales reach nearly two
hundred thousand dollars.
Mr. Hart believed in always putting his shoulder to the wheel, though on
one occasion a too literal adherence to this principle came near costing
him his life. In attempting to give some aid in the factory, he came in
contact with a circular saw, and his right arm was nearly severed from the
shoulder. This was in the year 1850. On his partial recovery, the
citizens, to show their sympathy with him in his misfortune, elected him
City Treasurer, an office then of but little value, requiring only a small
portion of his time and paying him two hundred dollars a year. For
nineteen years he held this office uninterruptedly, being elected by both
parties term after term, and witnessing the growth of the city, under his
financial administration, from an annual revenue of forty-eight thousand
dollars to nearly two millions. The emoluments of the office have risen
from a salary of two hundred dollars to a salary of fifteen hundred
dollars, and a percentage on special taxes collected. During his nineteen
years of service, Mr. Hart has negotiated all the loans, sold the school
bonds, and collected the special taxes, occupying nearly the whole of his
time, and employing the services of a clerk in transacting the business of
When William Hart became City Treasurer, the credit of the city stood
rather low, city warrants being hawked about at seventy-five cents on the
dollar. This unsatisfactory state of things was put an end to, mainly
through the exertions of the Hon. H. B. Payne, then in the City Council,
who procured the funding of the outstanding debt, and brought the credit
of the city up to the high standard at which it now stands.
When Judah Hart reached Cleveland, the then far West, a part of the family
slept in the Mansion House, occupying the site on which now stands
Cooper's hardware store, but young William and some other members of the
family slept in the covered traveling wagon, under a shed standing on the
site of the present Atwater Block. With the revolution of years the then
poor boy has now become part owner of the splendid block standing where a
part of the Harts slept, homeless wayfarers, forty-five years ago.
In 1834, Mr. Hart was married in Cleveland, to Miss Elizabeth Kirk,
daughter of John Kirk, who had left England about a dozen years
previously. No children were born of this marriage, but the pair have
adopted four, giving them all the advantages and rights of children born
to themselves, and three of these are now married.
Still in vigorous life, Mr. Hart has, to a great extent, retired from
active business, his establishment being carried on mainly by his sons
through adoption or marriage. This partial rest he has earned by a life of
labor and enterprise, in which he has watched narrowly his opportunities,
and availed himself of every chance of improving his facilities for
manufacture, and enlarging his field of business, has faithfully performed
his official duties, and has secured the respect alike of his business
acquaintances, his political constituents, and the public at large.
The wooden ware manufacture of Cleveland is an important part of its
industry, the manufacturing establishments being the largest within the
United States and doing a business that covers the entire west. Large as
the industry now is, it is of but very recent growth, and Cleveland is
chiefly indebted for its permanent establishment, in spite of a series of
discouraging disasters, to the enterprise and determination of John
[Illustration: Yours Truly, John Bousfield]
Mr. Bousfield was born at Stockport, in the county of Cheshire, England,
July 22, 1819. After serving an apprenticeship to the saddle and harness
business for seven years, he engaged in that business on his own
account, adding to it the manufacture of whips. Four years were thus
spent, when he decided on removing to America, leaving his native land
in December, 1843. Having brought two of his workmen with him, he
established himself in the same business in a small way in the city of
New York, but his health failing after a few months, he determined on
leaving for the west, hoping that a change of atmosphere, and possibly
of business, would be of benefit.
His first stay was at Kirtland, Lake county, Ohio, where he purchased a
farm and at the same time carried on the harness business. At this he
continued until about the year 1850, when he purchased a factory and water
power, put in a pail-making machine, and commenced, in a small way, the
manufacture of pails. In 1854, he removed to Fairport, in the same county,
where he purchased a larger building and carried on pail manufacturing
upon a larger scale. In March, 1855, he sold out the establishment, taking
in pay for it a note which he still holds.
In May of that year he came to Cleveland and organized the Cleveland
Wooden Ware Manufacturing Company, built a factory on the ground now
occupied by the present firm of Bousfield & Poole, and commenced
manufacturing in the following September. The first operations of the
company were on a small scale, making tubs, pails, washboards, and similar
articles in a limited way, but gradually increasing the business until it
reached what was then considered respectable proportions. In July, 1857,
the company sold out to Greenman & Co., of Massachusetts, and Mr.
Bousfield was retained by the new owners as superintendent of the works,
until January 12, 1859, when the factory was destroyed by fire.
In March of that year, Mr. Bousfield rented a building on the West Side
and commenced manufacturing again on his own account. Five months
afterwards he was burned out. Nothing daunted, he immediately purchased
the ruins of the Greenman & Co. factory, rebuilt it, and in January, 1860,
associated with him Mr. J. B. Hervey, of Cleveland, and in the following
month resumed work.
The new partnership was very successful. The business increased rapidly,
the area of their trade enlarged until it comprised all the principal
cities and towns in Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin. A
planing mill was added to the factory, and this, too, was highly
profitable. In 1864, the works were greatly enlarged to meet the rapidly
increasing demand for their wares. In 1865, Mr. John Poole, of Harmer,
Ohio, was admitted to the partnership, thus bringing in additional
capital and experience gained in the management of a similar factory at
Harmer. Mr. Poole has devoted himself principally to the financial and
sales departments of the business, and has proved himself a man of more
than ordinary business ability.
Thus far everything had been going on prosperously, but the old enemy,
fire, was as relentless as ever. On the 23d of March, 1866, the whole of
the extensive establishment was reduced to ashes, and the unfortunate
proprietors sorrowfully contemplated the ruins of years of labor and
enterprise, whilst a host of workmen stood still more sorrowfully by, and
saw their daily bread swept from them by the pitiless flames.
Seventy-five thousand dollars of capital were converted into valueless
ashes in a few hours.
The owners of the factory wasted no time in fruitless sorrow. An old
wooden building had partially escaped the flames. This was hastily patched
up, and within thirty days they were making pails and tubs as earnestly as
if they had never known a fire. Mr. Hervey sold out his interest to the
other partners, Messrs. Bousfield & Poole, who went to work with almost
unparalleled enterprise and energy, built one of the largest and most
substantial factories in the country, and entered upon the work of
manufacturing wooden ware upon a larger scale than had ever before been
attempted. The factory has two hundred feet front on Leonard and Voltaire
streets, with a depth of sixty feet, and five stories high; attached to
the main building are the engine and boiler rooms. The cost of the
building was forty-five thousand dollars. The present capacity of the
works is twenty-five hundred pails per day, six hundred tubs, a hundred
and twenty-five churns and other small ware, and a hundred dozen zinc
In May, 1867, the firm commenced the erection of a match factory which
was ready for operation in September of that year. A superintendent was
engaged who, unfortunately, was unqualified for his position and did much
harm to the enterprise, but on his removal, Mr. Bousfield took personal
charge of the match factory, and has succeeded in building up an
extensive trade. The daily capacity of the factory is two hundred and
ninety gross, which, if run to the full capacity throughout the year,
would yield to the United States government a revenue of over a hundred
and twenty thousand dollars.
The trade of Messrs. Bousfield & Poole extends from Buffalo through the
principal cities of the central, southern and western States, to New
Orleans on the south, and Salt Lake City on the west, two bills having
been sold to the son-in-law of Brigham Young in that city. A branch
warehouse has been established in Chicago as an entrepot for the supply of
the vast territory of which Chicago is the source of supply.
The manufactory of Messrs. Bousfield & Poole is the largest in the
country, and for the past three years has turned out about fifty per cent.
more work than any other in the United States. It consumes ten millions of
feet of lumber and logs annually, besides other material, and gives
employment to from three hundred to three hundred and fifty persons, men
women and children. Its influence on the population and prosperity of the
city can therefore be judged. The money for the support of these people,
and for the purchase of the materials employed, is almost wholly brought
from abroad, the amount of the wares used in Cleveland being, of course, a
very small fraction of the amount produced and sold. The same is true to a
greater or less extent, of all the manufactories of Cleveland, and serves
to account for the rapid growth of the city in population and wealth
within the few years past, in which Cleveland has entered in good earnest
on its career as a manufacturing centre.
Mr. Bousfield was married January 1, 1855, to Miss Sarah Featherstone, of
Kirtland, by whom he has had ten children, six of whom are yet living.
The oldest son, Edward Franklin Bousfield, is engaged with his father in
The secret of Mr. Bousfield's successful career can be found in his
indomitable perseverance. He has been wholly burned out three times, and
had, in all, about twenty fires, more or less disastrous, to contend with,
but each time he seemed to have gained new strength and vigor in business
as his works rose phoenix like from the ashes. Coupled with his
perseverance is a remarkable mechanical ingenuity which has served him to
good purpose in the construction and management of his factories. Whilst
in England, he invented a machine for braiding whips that would do the
work of fifteen women working by hand, as was the usual practice.
J. G. Hussey.
Among the elements that have contributed to the prosperity of Cleveland,
copper and oil hold no inconsiderable place. Not only has the cupriferous
wealth of Lake Superior directly enriched many Cleveland citizens who
interested themselves in its production, but it has led to the
establishment of a large and steadily increasing commerce between
Cleveland and Lake Superior. In the other direction, the enterprise of
Clevelanders in the petroleum region of Western Pennsylvania has built up
large fortunes for themselves and has established in Cleveland one of the
most extensive and remunerative of its industries. One of the earliest to
be identified, first with the copper and afterwards with the oil interest,
was J. G. Hussey.
Christopher Hussey, the father of the subject of the present sketch,
emigrated from Baltimore and settled in Cincinnati, in 1804, subsequently
removing to Jefferson county, Ohio, where J. G. Hussey was born in 1819.
Young Hussey received such an education as the facilities of a rural
neighborhood at that early day afforded, and added to his school knowledge
the practical details of business by becoming clerk in a village store.
Here he acquired those correct business habits that stood him in good
service in after life. In 1840, he opened a store on his own account in
Hanover, Ohio, and was very successful. From Hanover he removed to
Pittsburgh, where he operated in provisions until 1845. In that year there
was much excitement over the mineral discoveries on the south shore of
Lake Superior. The Indian titles to the mineral lands on that lake had
been but a short time before completely extinguished, and the surveys of
Dr. Houghton were bringing the cupriferous riches of the region into
notice. Mining permits were issued under the authority of Congress, those
permits giving the applicant a lease for three years, with a conditional
re-issue for three years more. The lessees were to work the mines with due
diligence and skill, and to pay a royalty to the United States of six per
cent, of all the ores raised. Early in the Spring of 1845, Mr. Hussey
formed a company of miners and explorers, with whom he went to Lake
Superior and opened several copper veins, some of which proved highly
productive and are still successfully worked. In some of these he has
retained an interest to the present time.
[Illustration: Yours Truly, J. G. Hussey]
In the Spring of 1847, he became a member of the private banking firm
of Hussey, Hanna & Co., in Pittsburgh, which did a successful business
for several years. At the same time he became interested in a banking
establishment in Milwaukee under the firm name of Marshall, Hussey &
Ilsley. In 1850, he removed to Milwaukee, to attend to the interest of
that firm, but the climate proving injurions to his health, he sold out
and removed to Cleveland, where he took up his residence in 1851. From
that time he became thoroughly identified with the business interests
of the city.
His first act was to establish the Forest City Bank, under the regulations
of the Free Banking Law of Ohio, and during his connection with the
institution it was eminently successful. During the same summer, he built
and put in operation a copper smelting and refining works, under the firm
name of J. G. Hussey & Co., engaging at the same time in the produce
commission business, under the firm name of Hussey & Sinclair, which
afterwards changed to Hussey & McBride. It is a matter of fact, on which
Mr. Hussey justly prides himself, and to which in great measure he
attributes his success, that he confined himself strictly to the
legitimate conduct of his business as a commission dealer, never
speculating in produce when selling it for others.
In 1859, Mr. Hussey became interested in the discoveries of petroleum in
the creeks and valleys of Venango county, Pennsylvania. With his
characteristic energy he went to the scene of the excitement just breaking
out over the discoveries, and becoming satisfied of their importance, he
immediately commenced the work of exploration, in company with others, who
purchased the McElhenny Farm, on which was struck the noted Empire well,
one of the most famous wells on Oil Creek, that by its extraordinary yield
first added to the petroleum excitement, and then broke down the market by
a supply far in excess of the then demand. The tools were no sooner
extracted than the oil rushed up in a torrent, equal to three thousand
barrels daily. The good fortune of the adventurers was disastrous. It was
more than they had bargained for, and was altogether too much of a good
thing. The demand at that time was very limited, the uses to which
petroleum had been applied being few, and science had not yet enabled it
to be converted into the cheap and useful illuminator it has now become.
One day's flow of the Empire would supply all the demands of the United
States for a week. Barrels, too, were scarce, and when those at hand were
filled tanks were hastily improvised, but were speedily overflowed. Pits
were dug and rapidly filled, until at length the well owners, cursed with
too much good luck, were compelled to turn the oil into the river. Then it
rapidly fell in price, owing to the superabundant supply. It fell, in the
autumn of 1861, to ten cents a barrel, and the oil interest was, for the
At this juncture Mr. Hussey was induced to erect works for refining the
oil and preparing it as an illuminator. The first establishment was a
small one, but as the demand increased and the oil interest revived, the
capacity was increased until it reached its present limit of from three
hundred and fifty to four hundred barrels per day.
When the second oil excitement broke out in 1864, Mr. Hussey was again one
of the leading explorers and adventurers in the oil regions of
Pennsylvania. Successful wells were put down in Oil Creek and on the
Allegheny river, and a large proportion of the product was brought to
Cleveland to be refined. His interest in this department of industry
became so great and important, that after fifteen years of active
connection with the produce and copper smelting business of Cleveland, he
sold out his interest in both the commission house and smelting works and
devoted his entire attention to oil.
Mr. Hussey is a good example of the success attending faithful,
intelligent and conscientious attention to business. A self-made man, he
never lost sight of the fact that the same scrupulous honesty which gave
him success was necessary to retain it. Debt he looked upon as the road to
ruin, and he scrupulously shunned it. He never bought an article for
himself or his family on credit. His business paper was always good and
never was protested. His engagements were ever punctually kept. His two
cardinal principles were "Time is money," and "Honesty is the best
policy," and these rules of action he carefully impressed on the young men
whom he brought up in business life. The value of his teachings and
example is shown in the fact that those brought up under his business care
during the past twenty years have come to hold a place in the front rank
of business men, and have, by their energy and integrity, accumulated
competence, and even affluence.
[Illustration: Yours Truly, A. B. Stone]
A. B. Stone
Andros B. Stone was born in the town of Charlton, Worcester county,
Massachusetts, June 18, 1824. He is the youngest son of Mr. Amasa Stone,
(now a hale, old man, ninety years of age, in possession of all his
faculties,) and brother of A. Stone, Jr., whose biography has been
sketched in an earlier portion of this work. Mr. Stone's boyhood was
spent in the various occupations of country farm life, where he received
in common with other boys the advantages of a public school education. In
his sixteenth year he left home to try the world for himself, and for a
year and a half worked industriously at the carpenter's trade with his
elder brother, to whom he was apprenticed for four years, to receive
thirty-five dollars the first year, forty the second, forty-five the
third, and fifty the fourth. An unconquerable desire for a better
education forced him to leave this occupation for a time, and enter an
academy, the expenses of which he met in part by teaching a public school
in the winter season, and which left him only five dollars with which to
make another start in the world.
In the meantime, Mr. Stone's brother, to whom he was apprenticed, had been
employed by Mr. Howe, the patentee of the "Howe Bridge," and to Andros was
assigned the keeping of the time of the workmen, and other similar duties,
instead of the more direct labors of the shop. In the autumn of 1842, Mr.
Howe purchased Mr. Stone's unexpired time from his brother, advanced his
pay, and kept him in the same employment as time-keeper, and adding to
this duty that of making estimates, drawing bridge plans, etc., allowing
him in the winter an opportunity of increasing his finances by teaching
school. Subsequently, Mr. A. Boody and Mr. A. Stone, Jr., purchased the
Howe Patent for building bridges in New England, and A. B. Stone, then
about nineteen years of age, made an engagement with the new firm. At
first he was given the charge of a few men in framing and raising small
bridges, but an opportunity soon occurred which enabled him to exhibit his
capabilities in a most advantageous light. Messrs. Boody and Stone were
constructing a bridge over the rapids of the Connecticut river at Windsor
Locks, about fifteen hundred feet in length, in spans of one hundred and
eighty feet. One day the superintendent, who had the immediate charge of
the work, went to Mr. Stone and complained of being so ill that he was
obliged to go home, and desired him to take temporary charge of the men.
Mr. Stone alleged his unfitness for the duty of taking charge of so many
men at the commencement of so important a work, but as the superintendent
said he could not stay longer, Mr. Stone was compelled to assume the
responsibility, against his wishes.
On examining the condition of the work the cause of the superintendent's
severe illness was made manifest. The lower chords or stringers, of about
two hundred and sixty feet in length, had been packed without being
placed opposite each other, one being placed several feet too far in one
direction, and the other about the same distance in the opposite
direction. Here was a dilemma and a difficulty, and an ability in the
mind of the young mechanic to meet it, so that, in a very short time, the
chords were properly adjusted. He then proceeded with the work, and in
three days had nearly completed the first span, when his brother paid a
visit of inspection to the bridge. Not finding the regular superintendent
in charge, he naturally inquired the cause, and when the circumstances
were explained, examined the work very minutely. Without any comments
upon what had been done, Mr. Stone left the place, leaving his younger
brother in charge, a tacit expression of confidence which was most
gratifying, and gave him a self-confidence he had not previously
possessed. About this time Mr. Stone was advanced to the general
superintendence of construction, which position he retained between two
and three years, when his brother admitted him as his partner in the
construction of the bridges on the Atlantic & St. Lawrence railroad. A
year was successfully spent in the prosecution of this work, when a
partnership was formed with Mr. A. Boody for constructing the bridges on
the Rutland & Burlington railroad in Vermont, which, although accompanied
with grave difficulties, resulted in success.
In 1850, Mr. Stone extended the field of his operations by forming a new
partnership with Mr. Maxwell, and purchasing the Howe Patent for building
bridges in the three northern New England States. For two years this field
was profitably and creditably filled, when, dazzled by the ample resources
of the West, New England was abandoned for Illinois. Here another
partnership was formed, with his brother-in-law, Mr. Boomer, and under the
stimulating effect of an undeveloped country, the new firm of Stone &
Boomer soon took a high and honorable rank throughout the entire Western
States. The total amount of bridging built by this firm from 1852 to 1858
was not less than thirty thousand feet. They constructed the first bridge
across the Mississippi river, the longest span of a wooden truss that had
up to that time ever been built. This was done under the most trying
circumstances, the thermometer at times marking 30 degrees below zero. The
longest draw-bridge of its period was also erected by this firm across the
Illinois river, it having a length of two hundred and ninety-two feet, the
whole structure revolving on its centre, and capable of being opened by
one man in one and one-half minutes. During this time they built the roof
of the Union Passenger House, in Chicago, which was of longer span than
had hitherto been built. The organization for the carrying on of their
work was so complete, that it was a common remark among the engineers of
western railroads, "If we want any bridges put up on short notice, we can
get them of Stone & Boomer; they have them laid up on shelves, ready for
erection!" In connection with their bridge business the firm carried on
the manufacture of railroad cars.
In the Spring of 1858, Mr. Stone gave up his home and business in Chicago
for his present residence in Cleveland and his present business as an iron
manufacturer. After carefully investigating the advantages which Cleveland
afforded for such a purpose, and realizing the present and prospective
demands for an increased development for the manufacture of iron, Mr.
Stone availed himself of the opportunity of identifying his interests with
that of the firm of Chisholm & Jones, who at that time had just put in
operation a small mill in Newburg. Here at once opened a new and
delightful opportunity for Mr. Stone to develope his natural love for the
mechanical arts. To manufacture iron required knowledge--was a science,
and to be master of his business was both his duty and his pride, and
claimed all his unflagging energy, his undaunted courage and
determination. Thus the small mill at Newburg grew from the capacity of
turning out thirty tons of re-rolled rails to its present capacity of
sixty tons, beside the addition of a puddling mill, a merchant bar mill, a
wire rod mill, two blast furnaces, spike, nut and bolt works. In the
meantime the small beginning had grown into such large proportions, and so
many railroad corporations had centered here, that it was thought best to
form the same into a stock company, embracing another rolling mill on the
lake shore, within the city limits. This was done, Mr. Stone filling the
office of President of the Cleveland Rolling Mill Company. In 1868, the
Company put into successful operation extensive steel works which they
had been engaged in erecting with great care and expense for nearly two
years. During that time Mr. Stone had made two visits to Europe for more
thorough investigation into the process of making Bessemer steel, and the
success of this undertaking so far has been admitted by all who have
visited the works to be without parallel in the American manufacture of
steel. In addition to this heavy and extended business, Mr. Stone is
president of another rolling mill company in Chicago, in which he is
largely interested, also of a large coal mining company in Indiana, and
vice President of a large iron manufacturing company at Harmony, Indiana,
also president of the American Sheet and Boiler Plate Company.
Mr. Stone is eminently known, and justly so, as a mechanic, and is widely
known as a man who crowns his thoughts with his acts. Still in the prime
of manhood, he stands connected with manufacturing interests, furnishing
employment to thousands of men, all of which has been the outgrowth of
scarcely more than ten years. This eminent success has not been the result
of speculation, or of luck, but the legitimate end of his own hands and
brain. Neither can it be said he has had no reverses. At one time the
failure of railroad companies left him, not only penniless, but fifty
thousand dollars in debt. With an indomitable will he determined to
liquidate that debt, and how well he succeeded need not be told. Mr. Stone
at present stands at the head of iron manufacturing companies, second to
none in the country, possessing almost unlimited credit. This
extraordinary success has by no means affected Mr. Stone's modest nature
for which he is so noted. Gentlemanly and affable in his intercourse with
all ranks and conditions of men, he has won universal respect, and an
enviable position in the business interests of our country.
Mr. Stone was married in 1846 to Miss M. Amelia Boomer, daughter of Rev.
J. B. Boomer, of Worcester, Massachusetts.
[Illustration: Yours truly, Henry Chisholm]
Henry Chisholm is of Scotch origin, having been born in Lochgelly in
Fifeshire, April 27, 1822. There, as in New England, children, if they are
heirs to nothing else, inherit the privilege of some early education. When
he was at the age of ten his father died. At the age of twelve, Henry's
education was finished and he was apprenticed to a carpenter, serving in
an adjoining city five years, at the expiration of which time he went to
Glasgow, as a journeyman. Whilst in Glasgow, he married Miss Jane Allen,
In 1842, he resolved to quit his native land and seek his fortune in the
West. Landing in Montreal, in April, he found employment as a journeyman
carpenter, working at his trade for two years. He then undertook contracts
on his own account, relying wholly on his own resources for their
execution, and all his undertakings proved successful. In 1850, he entered
into partnership with a friend to build the breakwater for the Cleveland
and Pittsburgh Railroad, at Cleveland, the work occupying three years.
This, and other similar contracts, such as building piers and depots at
Cleveland, employed his time and energies until his commencement of the
iron business at Newburg, as one of the firm of Chisholm, Jones & Co. This
company, and its business, have developed into the Cleveland Rolling Mill
Company of Cleveland, with two rail mills, making a hundred tons of rails
and twenty-five tons of merchant iron per day; two blast furnaces, turning
out forty tons of pig iron daily, and a Bessemer steel works,
manufacturing thirty tons of steel per day. Besides these, have been
established the Union Rolling Mills of Chicago, making seventy tons of
rails per day; of this extensive establishment Mr. Chisholm's son,
William, is manager. There are also two blast furnaces and a rolling mill
in Indiana, making forty tons of iron per day. Fifteen hundred acres of
coal land are owned in connection with these works. Of all these
enterprises Mr. Chisholm has been one of the leading managers, and remains
largely interested, his perseverence and energy aiding materially to crown
the undertakings, up to the present time, with the greatest success.
In the midst of a business so large, the social and religions duties of
Mr. Chisholm have not been neglected. He is a zealous and liberal member
of the Second Baptist church. For more than twenty-three years himself and
wife have been professors of religion, and their five surviving children,
the oldest of whom is now twenty-six years old, have become members of the
The history of the Scotch boy and his success in America should be read by
the youth of England and Scotland, as an example for them to follow. In
these and other European countries such a career would be almost, if not
quite, impossible. Mr. Chisholm has not been made proud by success, but
retains the affability and simplicity of his early days. He has still a
hearty physical constitution, with the prospect of a long life in which to
enjoy, in the retired and quiet manner most agreeable to his tastes, the
good fortune of this world, and the respect of his employees, and
neighbors and friends, which he values more highly than money.
R. P. Myers.
R. P. Myers was born in Schodack, Rensselaer county, New York, January 1,
1820. When between two and three years of age, his parents moved to Sand
Lake, in the same county. His father died May 14, 1823, leaving but very
limited means for the support of the widowed mother and three young
children; and it is to the prayers, counsels and Christian influence of
his mother Mr. Myers is largely indebted for the direction of his life. At
the age of fifteen he left school and became clerk in a village store, but
after one year, being dissatisfied with the business prospects of the
village, he obtained a situation in a dry goods store in Albany.
In 1842, he commenced business in Albany in the same line, with but two
hundred and twenty-five dollars and a good character, for his capital,
under the firm name of Allen & Myers, continuing thus about two years. At
the end of that time, believing the West offered greater inducements to
young men of small means, he removed to Ohio. His partner had previously
made a tour of observation through the West and become favorably impressed
with the business prospects of Akron, Ohio, which was at that time
attracting considerable attention. Mr. Myers, in company with his wife,
passed through Cleveland May 3d, 1844, (being the first anniversary of
their wedding,) on their way to Akron. There he conducted his old business
under the same name as at Albany, for about one year, and then formed a
company for the manufacture of stoves, under the style of Myers, Cobb &
Co., his former partner being the "Co." To this business he gave his
personal attention. The dry goods business was discontinued about a year
after engaging in the manufacture of stoves. In addition to this Mr. Myers
became interested in the manufacture of woolen and cotton machinery,
machine cards, &c., the name of the firm being Allen, Hale & Co. This was
developed into a flourishing business.
[Illustration: Respectfully yours, R. P. Myers]
In 1849, he was instrumental in the formation of the Akron Stove Company,
into which the firm of Myers, Cobb & Co. merged. At the first meeting of
the stockholders Mr. Myers was chosen general agent, in which position he
remained with signal profit to the stockholders, until February 1st, 1859.
This, though a small company, was one of the most successful stock
companies ever formed in this part of the country. Business continued to
expand, causing the company to enlarge its facilities for manufacturing
from time to time, and their products were sold through Ohio, Michigan,
Indiana, and other Western States. The fact that the stock at the time he
retired from the company sold for from four hundred to five hundred per
cent, above par value, after declaring liberal dividends from time to
time, speaks more plainly of its unparalleled success than anything we can
say, and is the best compliment that could be paid to the energy,
enterprise and business capacity of its retiring manager.
After a time, the stove business required his whole attention, and the
machine branch was sold out to one of the other partners; he then bent all
his energies to the invention and perfection of the stoves, and the
vigorous prosecution of the business of the company. After conducting the
business of the company ten years, he felt the want of a larger field for
enterprise, cast around for the most eligible situation, and finally
concluded that Cleveland was destined to be a great stove centre.
Resigning the management of the company February 1st, 1859, but retaining
most of his interest, he came to Cleveland and started an individual
manufactory, at the same time connecting with the stove business the
wholesaling of tin plate, sheet iron, &c., which was conducted with such
energy that a large trade was attracted to Cleveland that had previously
been given to other markets.
The rapid development of business, the demand upon his time in the
manufacturing department, and the need of extended facilities induced Mr.
Myers to associate with him Messrs. B. F. Rouse and James M. Osborn, who
now form the firm of Myers, Rouse & Co. Since the present firm has existed
they have built a new foundry, of large capacity, with all the modern
improvements, on West River street, which is now taxed to its full
capacity to meet the wants of their trade.
The increase of the stove manufacturing of the city is estimated to have
been full four hundred per cent. in ten years, and has fully justified
Mr. Myers' estimate of the natural advantages of Cleveland as a
This firm has patented a variety of new stoves that have become very
popular, and hence remunerative, among which are the Eclipse, in 1850,
soon followed by the Golden Rule and Benefactor, the last named having
obtained a most remarkable sale, and the name itself become a household
word throughout the country, and, in 1868, the celebrated Princess stove.
Of course, close attention to the wants of the country in this
direction for about one quarter of a century, has given Mr. Myers a
very valuable experience, which he is continually turning to account to
the benefit of the public and his own enrichment. The shipments of this
firm are to nearly all the markets in the northwest, reaching Council
Bluffs and Omaha.
Mr. Myers is now numbered among the most successful business men of the
city, and his success has been achieved in a department that has added
very materially to the progress of the city. The large number of men
employed, and the still larger number put into requisition in the
production of the material required for the uses of the manufactory, and
to supply the needs of the men, have added to the population and wealth of
Although so much engrossed in business since coming to Cleveland, Mr.
Myers has found time to be active in many benevolent movements. For thirty
years he has been a useful member of the Baptist church. His Christian
labors have been generously given to the Sunday schools and mission work,
and he is at this time superintendent of the First Baptist church Sunday
school of this city.
Mr. Myers is now forty-nine years old, with a vigorous physical
constitution and strong mind, that give promise of very many years of
usefulness still to come.
M. C. Younglove
From 1837 to 1842, when specie payments were resumed, Cleveland saw her
greatest financial embarrassments; but from the latter year, a new and
more promising era dawned upon her. The land speculator gave place to the
business man, and for many years immediately following, her progress,
though slow, was sure and steady. During these years of depression many
young and enterprising men settled here, who were, of course, untrammeled
by old speculating debts, and their business habits were untainted by the
loose recklessness of the land speculator. Many of these young men are now
to be found among our most substantial, successful and enterprising
citizens, and the gentleman whose name stands at the head of this article
is one of that number.
Mr. Younglove was born in Cambridge, Washington county, New York. His
immediate ancestors on both sides having been officers in the
Revolutionary army, gives him a good title to native citizenship. His
father died before his birth, leaving him sufficient property for all
educational purposes, but none to commence business with. He first essayed
a professional life, and with that view began the study of law, but soon
discovered that a sedentary occupation was uncongenial to him, and
abandoned the profession.
His first business connection, which was formed before his majority, was
with an uncle in his native county. But finding the country village of his
nativity too slow for a sanguine and active temperament, he determined to
try his fortune in the then comparatively unknown West, and in August,
1836, came to Cleveland. After a clerkship of eight months in a dry goods
store, he bought an interest in a book store, and in a few months
thereafter bought out his partner and added job and news printing, and
book publishing, to his other business. At this time he introduced the
first power press into Cleveland--and it is believed the second that was
run west of the Alleghenies--on which he printed for a long time the daily
papers of the city.
In 1848, in connection with Mr. John Hoyt, he built the Cleveland Paper
Mill; the first having steam power west of the mountains, and the first of
any importance in the United States. This innovation on the old mode of
obtaining power for such machinery, called out many prophecies of failure.
But these gentlemen not only made their business a success, but
demonstrated to Cleveland, that she had, in her proximity to the coal
fields, and in the steam engine, facilities for manufacturing unsurpassed
by the best water power in the country--a hint which she has not been slow
to improve upon.
Messrs. Younglove & Hoyt finally united their business with that of the
Lake Erie Paper Company, under the name of the Cleveland Paper Company, of
which latter company Mr. Younglove was elected president, and continued in
the chief management of its business until the Spring of 1867, when he
sold his entire interest, leaving the company with a capital of three
hundred thousand dollars, and one of the most prosperous paper
manufacturing companies in the country.
Mr. Younglove was one of the first of our citizens to perceive the
importance and necessity of a gas company for Cleveland. Learning that a
charter had been obtained by some of our wealthy men, and was laying
dormant in their hands, he, with some associates, bought it up and
proceeded to the erection of the works--himself being one of the
directors. Few, however, know the struggles and discouragements which
these directors encountered in their efforts to furnish the citizens of
Cleveland with one of the greatest conveniences and luxuries of
civilized life. The stock could not be sold here. Aside from that taken
by Mr. Younglove, only five hundred dollars were subscribed by the
citizens, and distributed as follows: James Kellogg, four hundred
dollars, and J. W. Allen, one hundred dollars; and this was subsequently
all taken off the hands of the subscribers by Mr. Younglove before it
was paid up. But the directors, well persuaded of the value and
importance of the work they had in hand, were in no way discouraged, but
pushed on the work till all present funds were exhausted and not a
dollar was left in the treasury to meet the demands of the next
Saturday's pay roll. At this juncture, the Board had a consultation,
which may be fitly termed an "anxious meeting." The question arose,
"What is to be done?" and in answer, each member determined to take such
an amount of stock as he could either pay for or sell. Mr. Younglove
took five thousand dollars, and determined to make another attempt to
sell to the wealthy men of the city, but after four days of industrious
effort he had not one dollar of subscription to reward his labor. Mr.
P. M. Weddell was the only one who gave any encouragement--"He might take
a few hundred dollars at seventy-five per cent."
After this failure, Mr. Younglove mortgaged his lot on Euclid avenue,
where he now lives, and paid up his subscription, thus fulfilling his
promise to his associates, and placing himself on record as the _only_
citizen who would help to supply the city with gas.
In 1850, Mr. Younglove, associated with Mr. Dudley Baldwin, bought of
Howell & Dewitt their machinery for manufacturing agricultural implements.
This establishment was immediately enlarged to do an extensive business.
Mr. Baldwin subsequently sold his interest to his partner, who still
retains his interest in the business, it being at present one of the
largest and most reputable manufactories in the city.
The writer of this has authority for saying, that Mr. Younglove looks upon
his connection with the Society for Savings in this city, from its
organization, as one of the most honorable and reputable of his business
life. It is an association purely benevolent in its objects and action,
managed by men who have no hope or desire of pecuniary benefit, with
matured judgment and an abnegation of self that may well secure for it the
utmost confidence--as it most happily has--of the laboring poor and the
helpless, for whose benefit it is maintained.
Mr. Younglove is one of the most enterprising and intelligent business
men. Having a natural talent for mechanics, he has done much to inaugurate
and encourage the manufactures of our city.
John D. Rockefeller.
Although yet quite a young man, John D. Rockefeller occupies in our
business circles a position second to but few. He began life with few
advantages, save that of honesty of purpose and unflinching morality, and
a determination to succeed, if unremitting effort would secure that end.
He, in connection with M. B. Clark, commenced the produce and commission
business on the dock, with a small capital saved from earnings. For a time
their profits were exceedingly small, but the firm soon gained the
confidence of our citizens and bankers, and at the end of the first year
they had done business to the amount of $450,000. Each successive year
added to their business, and in the fourth, it amounted to something like
$1,200,000, the average being, perhaps, about $700,000.
In the Spring of 1863, Mr. Rockefeller engaged in the oil refining
business, commencing with a capacity of forty-five barrels of crude oil
per day, and gradually increased it until 1865, when the capacity of his
works was a hundred and fifty barrels per day. At this time he sold his
interest in the commission business, and devoted his whole attention to
the oil refining. Every year witnessed an enlargement of his works, and
for the last three years it is believed that his has been the largest of
its kind in the world, the present capacity being twenty-five hundred
barrels of crude oil per day. The growth of the business, dating back to
1865, was such that it became necessary to establish a house in New York
for the disposition of their oil, where they now have warehouses of their
own, and sell and take care of their property.
The effect of such works as those of Mr. Rockefeller in the city may be
imagined when we say that there are about one hundred men regularly
employed in them, besides a force of some fifteen or twenty teams and
teamsters. To these must be added from seven hundred to eight hundred
men around the city employed in making barrels for the oil, and from
$20,000 to $25,000 per year expended among plumbers and various other
mechanics for repairs. The enlargements of their works this year will
cost near $40,000.
Mr. Rockefeller never retrogrades; he has always advanced from the
commencement. Close application to one kind of business, an avoidance of
all positions of an honorary character that cost time, and strict business
habits, have resulted in the success, the fruits of which he now enjoys.
He has worked himself, and kept everything pertaining to his business in
so methodical a manner that he knows every night how he stands with the
world. He was drilled to strict economy as an accountant during hard
times, before his own business history, and he has rigidly adhered to the
principles then learnt.
He has frequently been so situated as to choose between his own judgment
and that of older heads, and where he has followed his own opinions in
opposition to others of more experience he has seen no reason to regret
his choice. The result of his course has been, that, though still young,
he stands at the head of one of the most extensive business establishments
in the city, and is possessed of wealth sufficient to secure a comfortable
maintainance, and a provision against the ordinary mishaps of business.
Mr. Rockefeller is a valued member of the Second Baptist church
having long been a sincere believer in the faith and practice of the
[Illustration: Fraternally Yours, Peter Thatcher]
Peter Thatcher derives his descent in a direct line from the Reverend
Thomas Thatcher, the first minister of the Old South Church, in Boston,
who at the age of twelve years left England with his uncle Anthony, and
arrived in New England in 1635.
Peter Thatcher was born in Attleboro, Massachusetts, July 20, 1812. At the
age of nineteen, not liking his father's business of farming, he announced
his intention of seeking other means of livelihood, and, sorely against
his father's wish, he set out in search of fortune. Two days after leaving
his father's roof, he found employment with a house-carpenter, in Taunton,
Massachusetts, to whom he engaged himself to work one year for forty
dollars and board. After two years service in this employ he, in November,
1834, commenced work on the Boston and Providence Railroad, laying track,
in the employ of Messrs. Otis & Co. His industry and ability attracted the
attention of his employers, and he was retained and promoted by them,
remaining in the employ of the firm and their successors, railroad
building, until 1850, with the exception of three years spent on Fort
Warren and Fort Independence, in Boston Harbor, where he superintended the
work of construction under the supervision of Colonel Sylvanus Thayer.
During his career as a railroad builder he was engaged on the principal
railroads on the sea-coast from Maine to Georgia.
In 1850, the firm of Thatcher, Stone & Co. was formed, for the purpose of
building bridges, both in the eastern and western States, an office being
opened in Springfield for the former, and another in Cleveland for the
latter. In 1851, this firm was dissolved and that of Thatcher, Burt & Co.
formed. The patent for building the Howe Truss Bridge in the States of
Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky and Michigan was purchased, and nearly all the
original railroad bridges in Ohio, with the depots and engine houses,
together with many in other States, were built by this firm.
After having for thirteen years carried on the bridge building business,
and added to it a trade in lumber, the firm built the Union Elevator, in
Cleveland, and the new firm of Thatcher, Gardner, Burt & Co., commission
merchants and produce dealers, was formed. This firm was dissolved in
1865, by the withdrawal of Mr. Thatcher.
About this time a company was formed for the purchase of a patent obtained
for the manufacture of a durable paint and fire-proof mastic from prepared
iron ore. Mr. Thatcher was chosen president of the company which at once
entered on a vigorous prosecution of its business and has succeeded beyond
the anticipation of its projectors. The paint is made of Lake Superior
iron ore, ground fine and mixed with linseed oil, with which it forms a
perfect union. It is then used in a thin state as a paint for surfaces,
whether of wood stone or metal, exposed to the weather, and in a thicker
state for a fire-proof mastic. The ore is crushed with machinery of great
strength, and about three tons of the paint are produced daily, besides
the mastic, and find ready market.
In connection with the above Mr. Thatcher has recently purchased a patent,
obtained by Mr. Ward, for the manufacture of "Metallic Shingle Roofing,"
which is now being perfected and introduced to the public, and which, its
inventor claims, will supercede all methods of roofing now in use for
cheapness, durability, weight and effectiveness.
Mr. Thatcher has long been identified with the Masonic order, and has
filled high positions in that body. He is Past M. of Iris Lodge of
Cleveland, Past H. P. of Webb Chapter, has been Treasurer of Iris Lodge for
ten years, Past D. G. H. P. of the Grand Chapter of Ohio, and is now Grand
Treasurer of the Grand Commandery of Knights Templar of Ohio, which
position he has held six years.
Mr. Thatcher is a genial, whole-souled man, having a host of warm friends,
and has enjoyed the respect and confidence of all with whom he has been
W. C. Scofield,
W. C. Scofield was born near Wakefield, England, October 25, 1821, and
spent the earlier years of his life in Leeds, where he was employed on
machine work until his twenty-first year, when he determined to emigrate
to the Western continent to seek his fortune. On reaching America he found
his way westward until he arrived at Chagrin river in Cuyahoga county,
where he found employment with a Mr. Waite, at eight dollars a month,
working one year at this rate. The next two years were spent in the brick
yard of A. W. Duty. Following this, he was for two years turnkey under
sheriff Beebe, and then established himself in a brick yard of his own on
the west side of the river. One Summer's work in this experiment gave him
a start in business life, and laid the foundation, small though it was, of
his after prosperity.
[Illustration: Yours Respectfully, W. C. Scofield]
After his experiment in the brick making business, he undertook the
charge of the lard oil and saleratus works owned by Mr. C. A. Dean.
After three years, Messrs. Stanley, Wick & Camp bought the
establishment; and shortly after this change, Mr. Scofield purchased
the interest of Mr. Wick, and after a few months Mr. Camp sold his
interest to the remaining partners, who carried on the business until
1857. At that time Mr. Scofield purchased the interest of his partners
and became sole owner of the whole concern and carried on business in
this way for the next five years.
In 1861, he added to his lard oil and saleratus business that of refining
oil, associating himself in this enterprise with Messrs. Halle and
Fawcett. Their refinery was built on the site of the City Forge works, and
the capacity of the works was limited to two eight barrel stills.
Subsequently this land was sold for other purposes and the refinery was
closed, after a very successful career. Previous to that event the firm
built an oil refinery on Oil Creek, with a capacity of about forty
barrels. This is still in operation under the firm name of Lowry, Fawcett
& Co., turning out about sixty barrels of refined oil daily, and proving
from its start a continual success. In 1865, Mr. Scofield became
interested in the oil refining firm of Critchley, Fawcett & Co., in which
he still retains his interest, and which is in successful operation, with
a yield of about one hundred barrels per day. About the same time he
became a partner in an oil commission business in New York, established
under the name of Hewitt & Scofield, which has also proved a success. He
is also interested in the Cleveland Chemical Works, being vice president
of the company, which is doing a heavy business. The extent and importance
of the works may be inferred from the fact, that the buildings
necessitated an outlay of a hundred and sixty thousand dollars.
In 1863, the firm of Alexander, Scofield & Co., was formed, and commenced
operation on the site of the present works, at the junction of the
Atlantic & Great Western Railway with Liberty street. The works were
commenced with a capacity of fifty barrels daily, and gradually enlarged,
until the capacity now reaches six hundred barrels daily.
During the whole of Mr. Scofield's business career, with the extensive
operations of the firms in which he is interested, there has been but one
case of litigation. This is noteworthy, and speaks well for the integrity
and strict business habits of Mr. Scofield. He is not given to jumping
hastily at conclusions or embarking wildly in business schemes. Before
entering on an undertaking, he carefully, though rapidly, studies the
natural effect of the step and having satisfied himself of its probable
success, he prosecutes it with unflagging energy. The course of events
within the past few years offered unusual opportunities for a clear headed
and active business man to advance himself, and Mr. Scofield had the
forethought and energy to take advantage of those opportunities. From
first to last he had to depend on his own energies, having been left an
orphan at sixteen years of age, and from the time of his reaching his
majority, being compelled to push his way unaided, a stranger in a strange
land. The efforts of just such men have made Cleveland what it is to-day.
Levi Haldeman is a representative of another class of our citizens than
refiners, who have taken advantage of the petroleum enterprise, and are
spending their money in building up the prosperity of the city, turning
its energies into channels that cannot fail to give an impetus to all
branches of trade, and aid in establishing our financial institutions on a
basis of unrivalled strength, and who, at the same time, reap their reward
by putting money into their own pockets.
[Illustration: Respectfully + Truly, L. Haldeman]
The subject of this sketch was born in Chester county, Pennsylvania, Dec.
14, 1809, received a good common school education, and removed with his
father to Columbiana county, Ohio, in 1819. Until he was about twenty-five
years of age he spent his time with his father on his farm, and in
teaching school. He then commenced reading medicine with Drs. Robertson
and Cary of that place; after which he attended lectures at Cincinnati,
and was a private student of Drs. Gross and Parker--the former being now
Professer in Jefferson College, Philadelphia, and the latter Professor in
the College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York. Mr. Haldeman commenced
practice alone in 1839, at Minerva, Ohio, although he had practiced from
1837 with his old preceptor. He soon obtained an excellent practice in
medicine, and was noted for his skill in surgery, performing nearly all
the operations in that part of the country, among them tractreotomy, or
opening the windpipe and extracting foreign matter from it, and difficult
cases of lithotomy.
In 1860, Mr. Haldeman, in connection with Messrs. Hussey and McBride, of
Cleveland, bought the McElhenny Farm, in the Pennsylvania oil regions,
which proved to be very valuable. For the whole farm of two hundred acres
the sum of twenty thousand dollars was paid, subject to some leases, which
were renewed to the lessees. Mr. Funk leased a hundred and thirty acres of
the farm, subdivided it in into acre lots, and sub-lot them to a number of
oil companies, representing an aggregate capital of millions of dollars.
Messrs. Bennet and Hatch, the sub-lessees of one sub-lot, struck the
largest producing well yet found in the oil region the Empire, a three
thousand barrel well, which is estimated to have produced no less than six
hundred thousand barrels of oil and the whole farm is estimated to have
produced two millions of barrels. At the present time the sub-leases have
nearly all been forfeited, through breach of covenant, and the farm has
reverted to the owners, Messrs. Hussey and Haldeman. It is not now worked,
the wells having been flooded by the unexpected influx of water, against
which there had been no provision made by the owners of the wells. It is
expected to remedy this misfortune by plugging the wells below the water
veins, and pumping, with the hope of thus restoring the value of the farm.
The next enterprise was the purchase of the A. Buchanan farm, of three
hundred acres, in connection with others, subject, also, to a lease, but
giving the owners of the farm a royalty of one sixth of the oil produced,
free of cost, and retaining the use of the land for other purposes. On
this farm the town of Rouseville has been built since the purchase. This
has proved a very lucrative investment. The first well struck on it in
1860 is still producing. In company with others, Mr. Haldeman also bought
the royalty of the John McClintock farm for ten thousand dollars in gold,
the Irishman owning it thinking nothing but gold worth having. Mr.
Haldeman sold his thirty-second part of the same for a hundred thousand
dollars; another partner sold his for forty-thousand dollars, the
purchaser subsequently re-selling it for one hundred thousand dollars.
Besides this, Mr. Haldeman became half owner of two hundred acres not yet
developed, and he and his sons own about four hundred acres, supposed to
be excellent oil land. He has also invested about forty thousand dollars
in iron tanking, in the oil region, and has now tankage for four hundred
thousand barrels, in connection with others.
Mr. Haldeman was married in 1840 to Miss Mary Ann Gaves, of Columbiana
county. The oldest and second sons, L. P. and W. P. Haldeman, are engaged
in business with their father, and by their energy, foresight, and close
attention to business, have aided materially in the later successes of the
firm. Mr. Haldeman has, as is evident from the record here given, won for
himself considerable wealth, but it has been secured only by the exercise
of sound judgment and intelligent enterprise, which deserves, though it
does not always achieve, success.
The firm of Westlake, Hutchins & Co., composed of G. Westlake, H. A.
Hutchins, C. H. Andrews and W. C. Andrews, stands high among the oil
refining establishments of Cleveland, not only for the extent of their
operations but for their fair dealing in business matters. The firm
commenced the erection of their works in October, 1866, and in June of the
succeeding year began operations with a capacity of two hundred barrels of
crude oil per day. The business improved, and the works had to be enlarged
to keep pace with it, until the present capacity of the works is seven
hundred and fifty barrels per day. In the enlargements, the latest
improvements in the appliances for the refining of oil have been put in.
One still now employed has a capacity of eleven hundred barrels, which is
charged twice a week, and was the first of the kind in the State. Besides
this are ten stills of thirty barrels each, one of two hundred and fifty
barrels, and one, recently completed, forty feet in diameter, of the same
pattern as the monster still just mentioned, and which is calculated for
two thousand barrels. The total capacity of the works, including this
still, is fourteen hundred and sixteen barrels of crude per day, which
will yield, if running to full capacity, two hundred and eighty-eight
thousand barrels of refined oil in a year, or between three and four
millions of dollars in value at the stills. Connected with the works are a
twenty thousand barrel tank, a fifteen thousand barrel tank, two of ten
thousand barrels each, one of six thousand barrels, and several from two
thousand barrels down. When all its improvements in progress are completed
it will be one of the largest refineries in Cleveland and in the United
States, and with enterprise corresponding to the size and importance of
its works. A large number of men are employed, either at the works or in
direct connection with it by providing cooperage and other necessaries for
Mr. Westlake, the senior member of the firm, was born in Chemung county,
New York, January 11, 1822, received a good education and when a young man
was employed as a clerk in a lumber business for a couple of years. In
1847, he went into the lumber trade on his own account, remaining in that
business until 1866, when he removed to Cleveland, and finding that the
oil refining business held out reasonable prospects of profit, he embarked
in it, and by his energy of character and enterprise has achieved
flattering success, although the time in which he has been engaged in the
business is short. He is still in the prime of life.
Mr. Westlake was married in 1848 to Miss Hatch, of Elmira, Chemung county,
and has three children.
Stephen Buhrer, the subject of this sketch, is of immediate German
descent. His father, a native of Baden, and his mother of Wirtemburg,
emigrated to this country in the year 1817. Their acquaintance was first
formed on board of the emigrant ship on their passage hither, and they
were married soon after their arrival in this country. After remaining in
the State of Pennsylvania about two years, they came to make their home
in Tuscarawas county, Ohio, where, on the 26th day of December, 1825,
their son, Stephen Buhrer, was born. That region at that time (fifty
years ago) was remarkably wild and rough, and inhospitable, but since, by
the thrifty German population, by whom it was mainly inhabited, it has
become scarcely inferior to any other part of the State in agricultural
wealth. But the father of Stephen Buhrer was not destined to live to see
this prosperity. He died in the year 1829, leaving his widow and two
young children, Stephen and Catharine, dependent on themselves to make
their way in the world.
From the severe discipline to which Mr. Buhrer was subjected in early
life, and from the difficulties which he had to overcome, he acquired that
energy and force of character which have given him success and by which he
has attained to a high rank as a self-made man.
Mr. Buhrer does not remember that he was privileged to attend any school
after he was ten years of age. All the education which he subsequently
acquired he obtained on Sundays and in evenings, after his day's labor was
over. He has been a citizen of Cleveland since the year 1844. His first
business in this city was at his trade, as cooper, and afterwards he
became extensively engaged, and with success, in the business of purifying
and refining spirits.
In the Spring of the year 1853, he was elected a member of the City
Council, and was twice thereafter re-elected to the same office, the last
time almost without opposition.
By the manner in which he discharged his duty as a member of the City
Council, public attention was directed toward him as a suitable person for
the responsible office of Mayor of the city, to which he was elected, at
the April election, in the year 1867, by a very large majority, although
he did not belong to the dominant political party. It is conceded by all
that he has discharged the duties of Mayor, with a zeal and a devotion to
the interests of the city which have had few examples. Turning aside, on
his election, from the business in which he was engaged, he has allowed
the affairs of the city to monopolize his attention. Placed by his office
at the head of the Board of City Improvements, and having in charge public
works of great magnitude, involving the expenditure of vast sums of money,
invested with the sole control and management of the large police force of
the city, and therefore made responsible for its fidelity and efficiency,
and exercising a supervision over all the departments of the city
government, to promote economy and to lessen taxation, Mayor Buhrer has
found his office to be no sinecure. Among the distinguishing traits of his
official conduct has been his impartiality, his exemption from favoritism
and partizanship, when in conflict with the public interests, and
especially his well-known hostility to "cliques" and "rings," such as
resort to a city government as a rich placer, where they may work to
enrich themselves at the expense of the people. The rigid discharge of
duty which he has required of the police under his charge, and the
avoidance, at the same time, of everything like oppression, or the
exercise of undue severity in office, have received the public
[Illustration: Yours Respectfully, Stephen Buhrer]
One of the most prominent institutions of Cleveland will be the House of
Correction, now in progress of construction, and which is humanely
intended to reform and reclaim, as well as to punish, the vicious and the
criminal. To Mr. Buhrer much credit will be awarded for the active and
leading part he has taken in the establishment of such an institution.
At the expiration of his term of office, it was his wish to be relieved
from public care and to devote all of his time to his private pursuits,
and which, the more he expected to do, as no one of his predecessors had
ever been re-elected, or had entered again upon a second term. But
yielding to the solicitations of friends, he again became a candidate, and
at the April election, in 1869, was again elected Mayor of the city of
Cleveland, by nearly three thousand majority. Such a demonstration by the
people is a sufficient commentary upon his character as a citizen, and
upon the public estimation of his official services.
M. B. Clark.
M. B. Clark was born in Malmsbury, England, September 6, 1827. From early
boyhood until he was nearly of age he was employed in all the various
occupations of an agricultural district. About this time the United
States, as a promising country for the working man, was attracting
considerable notice in his native village, and young Clark, being
favorably impressed with reports from America, secretly resolved to
husband his means and follow the example of those who had recently gone.
In the Spring of 1847, he left home with but barely sufficient means for
the expenses of the journey. On the 17th of June in that year he landed at
Boston, amidst martial music and parade of military, celebrating the
battle of Bunker's Hill. This, however, was but poor consolation to the
English lad, who found himself penniless and friendless. He used every
effort to find employment without success, and in the meantime was obliged
to sleep wherever night overtook him. At last he obtained work on a farm,
in the little town of Dover, Massachusetts, at ten dollars per month. He
remained in this situation until October, when, with the regrets of his
employer, he left for the West.
On arriving in Ohio, he first obtained employment at chopping wood and
teaming, in Lorain county. In the following Spring he returned to
Cleveland and obtained a situation as helper in a hardware store. Here it
became apparent to him that he was sadly deficient in an educational point
of view, and that it offered an almost insuperable barrier to his
advancement in life. To remedy this, so far as possible, he devoted all
his leisure hours to study, and on the establishment of the evening
schools the following winter, he availed himself of them, and the
advantage soon became apparent.
With a view to the improvement of his circumstances, in 1851, he engaged
himself to Hussey & Sinclair, with whom he remained six years, when he
returned to his former employers, Otis & Co., and remained with them three
In 1859, he established himself in the commission business, associating
with him John D. Rockefeller, the firm name being Clark & Rockefeller;
both young men of limited means. By strict attention and honorable conduct
they soon built up a lucrative business. In 1860, G. W. Gardner became a
member of the firm, and continued as such for two years, when he retired.
In 1863, Mr. Clark's attention was attracted to the manufacture of
petroleum oils, a business then in its infancy. In connection with his
partners, he erected a factory on the Newburg road, the capacity of which
was about fifty-six barrels of crude oil per day. They soon discovered
that there was money in the enterprise, and before the end of the year
they had increased the capacity of their works four-fold; and the
enterprise of this firm has aided materially in making Cleveland what it
is to-day, the successful rival of Pittsburgh in the manufacture of
petroleum oils. In 1865, the manufacturing branch was purchased by his
partner, and the general commission business was continued by Mr. Clark
until 1866, when he sold out his interest, remaining nominally out of the
business until June of that year, when he wearied of idleness and sought
active business once more. Purchasing the controlling interest in another
refinery, he set to work, vigorously, enlarging the capacity of the works
and bringing capital and energy to bear with such effect upon the business
of the firm, that it now ranks among the leading oil refining
establishments of the country.
[Illustration: Yours Respectfully, M. B. Clark]
Mr. Clark has been no niggard with the wealth that has accrued to him
from his business. During the war he contributed liberally and was active
in aiding the cause of the government by giving every practical measure
his cordial and generous support. In other matters he has manifested a
like liberal spirit. In politics he has acted with the Republicans, and
has been active in furthering the success of that party. In 1866, he was
elected member of the city council from the fourth ward, and was
re-elected in 1868. In religions matters he has always connected himself
with the Wesleyan Methodists, and has been a leading supporter of that
congregation in Cleveland.
Still in the vigor of life, Mr. Clark has the opportunity of doing much
more for the prosperity of the city by increasing the manufacturing
business, and this his practical nature leads him to do.
It will be seen that Mr. Clark has been the architect of his own
fortune. His sympathies are with the industrial classes, from which he
sprang, and in return he has the confidence and good will of a large
portion of that class.
Mr. Clark was married in 1853, and has a family of five children.
Jacob Lowman was born in Washington county, Maryland, Sept. 22, 1810. He
worked with his father on the farm until he was eighteen, at which time he
became an apprentice to the smithing department of the carriage building
trade. At the expiration of his apprenticeship, in 1832, he came to Ohio.
He stopped in Stark county for a few months, and then came to Cleveland,
in search of work, which he readily obtained, with Elisha Peet, on Seneca
street, where Frankfort street now intersects it. He worked about a year
and a half, for which he received nine dollars per month and board. Being
of steady habits, he saved in that time about seventy-five dollars. Mr.
Lowman then bought out his employer, and commenced at once on his own
account, at the same place. After two years, he built a shop where the
Theatre Comique now stands, and remained there eight years. At first he
labored alone, after awhile he had one journeyman, soon adding still
another, and another, till, at the end of the eight years, he employed
about fifteen men. He then removed to Vineyard street, having built shops
there to accommodate his increasing business. This was about the year
1842--3. After moving to the new buildings, his business constantly grew
with the city, and more men were employed. In 1851, Mr. Lowman commenced
the erection of a still larger building to meet his increasing demands; he
was then employing from thirty-five to forty men. About this time too, he
associated with him Mr. Wm. M. Warden, who had then been in his employ for
about ten years. Their facilities were sufficient till about the time of
the war, when they erected a large brick building on Champlain street, now
occupied as a smith shop, trimming shop, store room, etc., since which
they have employed about sixty men. Mr. Lowman, for a number of years, did
little beside a local trade, but for the last five or six years he has
built up quite a large foreign trade, shipping West extensively--
Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, Indiana and Kentucky, being
the principal markets.
Mr. Lowman has been strictly temperate all his life. He has taken a lively
interest in the Sunday schools of the city, in connection with the
Methodist Episcopal Church, of which he has been a member nearly since he
came to the city.
He was married in 1841 to Miss Minerva E. Peet, by whom he had four
children, three of whom are now living--the oldest son being in business
with his father. He suffered the loss of his partner in life in 1857. He
married again in 1863, to Mrs. Sarah D. Goodwin, of Lorain county, Ohio,
formerly of Vermont.
He attributes his success in business to the fact that he had an object in
view, and endeavored to attain it, strict attention to business, economy,
and studying to give satisfaction by his work.
He is only fifty-eight years of age, and well preserved, and in all
human probability will live to enjoy the fruit of his labor for many
years to come.
[Illustration: Yours Truly W. G. Wilson]
W. G. Wilson.
W. G. Wilson, now president of the Wilson Sewing Machine Company of
Cleveland, was born in Franklin county, Pennsylvania, on the first of
April, 1841. His education was obtained at a village school house. When he
was in his thirteenth year his parents removed to Ohio, and the lad
remained with them until his eighteenth year, when he left home with a
somewhat indefinite idea of doing something for himself, although
possessing neither money nor friends to aid him in his start in life.
Until the year 1864, he wandered from place to place, turning his hand to
various employments, but was dissatisfied with them all, being convinced
that he had not yet found his right vocation or location.
In 1864, he was visiting some friends at Madison county, Ohio, when his
attention was attracted by a cheap sewing machine. Believing that money
could be made by the sale of such machines he purchased one, mastered its
mode of operation, and took a traveling agency. Finding this a more
profitable business than any he had yet undertaken, he prosecuted it with
vigor, and being of an inquiring mind, soon picked up important facts
concerning the business, the manufacture of the machines, and the profits
of the manufacturers and dealers. He discovered that the largest profits
were not made by those who retailed the machines, and, therefore, he set
to work to change his position in the business and so enlarge his profits.
In Fremont, Ohio, he formed the acquaintance of a young man in the grocery
business, who had thought at times of entering on the sewing machine
trade. A partnership was formed. Mr. Wilson contributed his whole
available means, sixty-five dollars, to which he added the experience he
had gained, whilst his partner contributed to the common stock three
hundred dollars. With this slender cash capital, but abundant confidence
in their success, the new firm came to Cleveland, which they selected as
the base of their operations on account of its superior shipping
facilities, and opened a wareroom in Lyman's Block, having previously made
arrangements with manufacturers in Massachusetts to make machines for
them. The new firm of Mather & Wilson were successful beyond their
About a year had been passed in this way when suits were brought against
Mather & Wilson, in common with a number of other parties throughout the
West, for an alleged infringement of a sewing machine patent. Under the
pressure of these suits, which were prosecuted with a large capital to
back up the litigating parties, Mr. Wilson endeavored to secure the
co-operation of the more powerful of the defendants, but without success,
each party preferring to fight the battle singly. After a hard fight in
the courts, a compromise was effected, the suit against Mather & Wilson
withdrawn on each party paying his own costs, and they were allowed to
carry on the business unmolested.
Shortly afterwards Mr. Wilson sold out his interest in the firm. A few
weeks subsequently he made an agreement with H. F. Wilson, whereby the
latter was to perfect and patent a low priced shuttle machine, and assign
the patent to the former. In two months the machine was in the patent
office, and in 1867 the manufacture was commenced in Cleveland. No money
or labor was spared in perfecting the machine, which achieved an instant
success and became exceedingly profitable.
In 1868, the Wilson Sewing Machine Company was organized with a paid up
capital of one hundred thousand dollars, the principal portion of their
stock being owned by Mr. Wilson, who is president of the company. The
business of the concern has grown until it now reaches five hundred
machines per week, and branch houses have been established in Boston and
St. Louis, with general agencies in the principal cities of the United
States. Through the rapid development of their business the company have
recently purchased a tract of land at the junction of Platt street and the
Pittsburgh railroad crossing, in Cleveland, for the purpose of erecting a
large building for the manufacture of their sewing machines, that will
give employment to between two and three hundred men.
The Wilson Sewing Machine Company is one of the latest established
manufactories in Cleveland, but promises to take rank among the most
important. It deserves especial mention among the record of Cleveland
enterprises, as producing the first local sewing machine that has
succeeded, although many attempts have been made.
Albert C. McNairy.
This department of the present work would be imperfect without a reference
to the firm of McNairy, Claflen & Co., which ranks among the heaviest and
most important contracting firms in the country.
Albert C. McNairy, the head of the firm and a man of great enterprise and
energy of character, was born June 14, 1815, at Middletown, Connecticut,
and was early engaged in work of a similar character to that now
undertaken by the firm. In 1848, he constructed the famous Holyoke Dam,
across the Connecticut river at Holyoke, which is over a thousand feet
between the abutments, and thirty feet in height. In 1851, he became a
member of the bridge building firm of Thatcher, Burt & Co., of Cleveland,
whose operations in the construction of bridges were very extensive. In
1864, the firm name became McNairy, Claflen & Co., by the admission of
Henry M. Claflen, who had been in the employ of the firm since 1854. In
1866, Mr. Thatcher and Mr. Burt retired and Harvey T. Claflen, (who had
been connected with the establishment since 1852,) and Simeon Sheldon
From 1851 to a recent date, the Howe Truss Bridge was nearly the only
bridge made by the concern. They now are largely engaged in the
construction of iron bridges and all kinds of railway cars. The concern
has built three thousand two hundred and eighty-one bridges--about sixty
miles in the aggregate. The streams of nearly every State east of the
Rocky Mountains are spanned by their bridges, and it is a historical fact
that not one bridge of their construction has fallen.
Three hundred and fifty men are employed by the firm, and the aggregate of
their business reaches two millions of dollars yearly.
The firm is now constructing the New York and Oswego Midland
Railroad, from Oneida to Oswego, a distance of sixty-five miles, and
furnishing the cars.
The general management of the affairs of the company is in the hands of
Messrs. McNairy and Henry M. Claflen. The management of the works is
assigned to Harvey T. Claflen, whilst the engineering department falls to
the particular superintendence of Mr. Sheldon. The Messrs. Claflen are
natives of Taunton, Massachusetts, and Mr. Sheldon of Lockport, New York.
J. H. Morley.
J. H. Morley is a native of Cayuga county, New York. He came to Cleveland
in 1847, and commenced the hardware business on Superior street, under the
firm name of Morley & Reynolds. This firm continued, successfully, for
about twelve years, after which, for some time, Mr. Morley was engaged in
no active business. In 1863, he commenced the manufacture of white lead,
on a limited scale. Three years subsequently, a partnership was formed
with T. S. Beckwith, when the capacity of the works was immediately
enlarged. Every year since that time they have added to their facilities.
Their factory has a frontage on Canal and Champlain streets, of over three
hundred feet. Their machinery is driven by a hundred horse-power engine,
and four hundred corroding pots are run. About one thousand tons of lead
are manufactured yearly, and find a ready market in Ohio, Michigan,
Wisconsin, Iowa and New York.
The telegraphic history of Cleveland is mainly written in the story of the
connection with this city of the two leading telegraphers whose
biographical sketches are given in this work. The master spirit of the
great telegraphic combination of the United States, and the chief
executive officer of that combination, have made Cleveland their home and
headquarters. Their story, as told in the immediately succeeding pages, is
therefore the telegraphic history of Cleveland.
Jeptha H. Wade.
Foremost on the roll of those who have won a distinguished position in the
telegraphic history of the West, is the name of Jeptha H. Wade, until
recently president of the Western Union Telegraph Company, and who still,
although compelled by failing health to resign the supreme executive
control, remains on the Board of direction, and is one of the leading
spirits in the management.
Mr. Wade was born in Seneca county, New York, August 11, 1811, and was
brought up to mechanical pursuits, in which he achieved a fair amount of
success. Having a taste for art, and finding his health impaired by the
labors and close application consequent on his mechanical employment, he,
in 1835, turned his attention to portrait painting, and by arduous study
and conscientious devotion to the art, became very successful. Whilst
engaged in this work, the use of the camera in producing portraits came
into notice. Mr. Wade purchased a camera, and carefully studied the
printed directions accompanying the instrument. These were vague, and
served but as hints for a more careful investigation and more thorough
development of the powers of the camera. By repeated experiments and
intelligent reasoning from effects back to causes, and from causes again
to effects, he at length became master of the subject, and succeeded in
taking the first daguerreotype west of New York.
When busy with his pencil and easel taking portraits, and varying his
occupation by experimenting with the camera, news came to him of the
excitement created by the success of the telegraphic experiment of
building a line between Baltimore and Washington. This was in 1844. Mr.
Wade turned his attention to the new science, studied it with his
accustomed patience and assiduity, mastered its details, so far as then
understood, and immediately saw the advantage to the country, and the
pecuniary benefit to those immediately interested, likely to accrue from
the extension of the telegraph system which had just been created.
Without abandoning his devotion to art, he entered on the work of
extending the telegraph system. The first line west of Buffalo was built
by him, between Detroit and Jackson, Michigan, and the Jackson office was
opened and operated by him, although he had received no practical
instruction in the manipulation of the instruments. In the year 1848, an
incident occurred, which, though at the time he bitterly deplored it as a
calamity, was, in fact, a blessing in disguise, and compelled him
perforce to embark on the tide which bore him on to fame and fortune. He
was an operator in the line of the Erie and Michigan Telegraph Company,
at Milan, Ohio, when a conflagration destroyed all the materials and
implements forming his stock in trade as a portrait painter. After a
brief consideration of the subject, he decided not to replace the lost
implements of his art, but to cut loose altogether from the career of an
artist, and hereafter to devote himself solely to the business he had
entered upon with fair promise of success.
[Illustration: Very Truly Yours, J. H. Wade]
The first years of telegraph construction were years of much vexation of
spirit to those engaged in such enterprises. Difficulties of all kinds,
financial, mechanical, and otherwise, had to be encountered and overcome.
There were those who objected to the wires crossing their land or coming
in proximity to their premises, fearing damage from the electric current
in storms. Those who had invested their capital wanted immediate large
returns. Some of those who had to be employed in the construction of the
lines were ignorant of the principles of electrical science, and their
ignorance caused serious embarrassments and delays. Defective insulation
was a standing cause of trouble, and telegraphers were studying and
experimenting how to overcome the difficulties in this direction, but
without satisfactory result. In the face of all these difficulties, Mr.
Wade proceeded with the work of extending and operating telegraph lines.
In addition to the interest he had secured in the Erie and Michigan line.
he constructed the "Wade line" between Cleveland via Cincinnati, to St.
Louis, and worked it with success. The "House consolidation" placed Mr.
Wade's interest in the lines mentioned in the hands of the Mississippi
Valley Printing Telegraph Company, and before long this consolidation was
followed by the union of all the House and Morse lines in the West, and
the organization of the Western Union Telegraph Company. In all these acts
of consolidation the influence of Mr. Wade was active and powerful.
Realizing the fact that competition between short detached lines rendered
them unproductive, and that in telegraphing, as in other things, union is
strength, he directed his energies to bringing about the consolidation,
not only of the lines connecting with each other, but of rival interests.
The soundness of his views has been proved by the unremunerativeness of
the lines before consolidation and their remarkable prosperity since.
Mr. Wade was one of the principal originators of the first Pacific
telegraph, and on the formation of the company he was made its first
president. The location of the line, and its construction through the
immense territory--then in great part a vast solitude--between Chicago and
San Francisco, were left mainly to his unaided judgment and energy, and
here again those qualities converted a hazardous experiment into a
brilliant success. Mr. Wade remained president of the Pacific Company
until he secured its consolidation with the Western Union Telegraph
Company, to accomplish which, he went to California, in the latter part of
1860, and succeeded in harmonizing the jarring telegraphic interests
there. On the completion of this consolidation, Mr. Wade was made
president of the Western Union Telegraph Company, his headquarters being
At a meeting of the Board of Directors, in July, 1867, a letter was
received from Mr. Wade, declining a re-election to the office of
president. The following resolutions were unanimously adopted by
_Resolved_, That in receiving the letter of J. H. Wade, Esq., declining
re-election to the presidency of this company, we cannot pass it to the
officiai files without recording our testimony to the distinguished
service he has rendered to the general system of American Telegraphs,
and especially to the company whose management he now resigns.
Connecting himself with it in its earliest introduction to public use,
and interesting himself in its construction, he was the first to see
that the ultimate triumph of the telegraph, both as a grand system of
public utility, and of secure investment, would be by some absorbing
process, which would prevent the embarrassments of separate
To the foresight, perseverance and tact of Mr. Wade, we believe is
largely due the fact of the existence of one great company to-day with
its thousand arms, grasping the extremities of the continent, instead of
a series of weak, unreliable lines, unsuited to public wants, and, as
property, precarious and insecure.
_Resolved_, That we tender to Mr. Wade our congratulations on the great
fruition of his work, signalized and cemented by this day's election of
a Board representing the now united leading telegraph interests of the
nation, accompanied with regrets that he is not with us to receive our
personal acknowledgements, and to join us in the election of a successor
to the position he has so usefully filled.
Office of the Western Union Telegraph Company, New York, July
William Orton, President.
O. H. Palmer, Secretary.
As before mentioned, Mr. Wade remains a director and leading spirit in the
Board, where his suggestions are listened to with respect and acted on
without unnecessary delay. In addition to his connection with the
telegraph Company, Mr. Wade is heavily interested in several of the most
important manufactories, in the railroads, and in the leading banks of
Cleveland. The wealth he has accumulated is mostly invested in such a
manner as to largely aid in building up the property of Cleveland, a city
in which he feels a strong interest, not only from the fact that it has
been for the past twenty years his place of residence, but that the wealth
enabling him to enjoy the beautiful home he has secured there, was made in
It has already been noted that Mr. Wade, when a painter, took the first
daguerreotype west of New York. Soon after his entering upon the business