Charles E. (Charles Elliott) Fitch.

Encyclopedia of biography of New York, a life record of men and women whose sterling character and energy and industry have made them preëminent in their own and many other states (Volume 5) online

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pany, of Syracuse, New York, of which
he was the first president, and this estab-
lishment is now very extensively engaged
in supplying the American demand for
soda ash. He married, March 29, 1854,
Margaret Anne, daughter of Rev. Anson
Rood, of Philadelphia, died in August,
1895.

Frederick Rowland Hazard, second son
of Rowland and Margaret Anne (Rood)
Hazard, was born June 14, 1858, in Peace-
dale, where his early years were spent,
and in 1881 graduated from Brown Uni-



versity, Providence. Following his grad-
uation he spent two years in the woolen
mills of his native town, and in the fall
of 1883 entered the employ of the Solvay
Process Company, of Syracuse, of which
his father had been president since its
founding. In September of that year he
sailed for Europe to investigate the pro-
cesses of manufacture of soda products.
For nine months he pursued his investi-
gations in the works of Solvay & Com-
pany at Dombasle, France. In May of
the following year he returned to Amer-
ica, and entered upon his duties as assist-
ant treasurer of the Solvay Process Com-
pany, of Syracuse, one of the greatest in-
dustries of that progressive city. In June,
1887, he was promoted to the office of
treasurer, and continued in that capacity
to 1898, with residence in Syracuse. He
was made president following the death
of his father. Since their organization he
has been treasurer of the Tully Pipe Line
and Split Rock Cable Road companies,
and was also president of the Syracuse
Athletic Association until it was dis-
banded in 1902. He was elected the first
president of Solvay Village, a Syracuse
suburb, upon its establishment. May 15,
1904, and is active in various enterprises
which are contributing to the growth and
eminence of Syracuse. He is a prominent
member of the Citizens' Club, enjoys the
friendship and esteem of the residents of
his home city, and is ever ready to further
any undertaking calculated to promote
the moral, social and pecuniary welfare
of the community.

He married, May 29, 1886, Dora G.
Sedgwick, daughter of the late Charles
B. Sedgwick, of Syracuse. Their home
is at "Upland Farm/' and they have chil-
dren : Dorothy, born May 21, 1887; Sarah
Sedgwick, August 2, 1889 ; Katherine,
November 7, 1890; Frederick Rowland,
December 6, 1891.



lOI



ENCYCLOPEDIA OF BIOGRAPHY



WILES, Ben,

Teacher, Lavryer, Journalist.

A student of two universities, a teacher,
member of the Onondaga county bar
since 1910, prominent in politics as a cam-
paign orator and manager, a candidate
for mayor of the city of Syracuse, a news-
paper and magazine editor, corporation
counsel, exposer of graft, head of a fam-
ily and just thirty years of age, consti-
tutes the outlines only of Mr. Wiles'
career to date. Should corresponding
activity be manifested during the coming
thirty years the duty of the chronicler of
19.15 will be a pleasant but an arduous
one. Fourteen of his years have been
spent in Syracuse and most of the
achievement outlined has been com-
pressed into that period. He is very
popular in the city, particularly so in offi-
cialdom and in the neighborhood of his
home in the Seventeenth Ward, a section
of suburban type, where people know
their neighbors, and "drop in" from pure
interest in each other.

Ben Wiles was born at Vanhornesville,
Herkimer county, New York, January 3,
1886, son of John Milton and Ida M.
(Young) Wiles, and a descendant of
Dutch and German ancestry. John Mil-
ton Wiles, who was a prominent citizen
of Herkimer county. New York, died in
1913 at the age of fifty-six. His wife is a
daughter of Lewis G. Young, a well-
known Democratic politician of Herki-
mer county, and a descendant of the early
Dutch stock of the Mohawk Valley. He
obtained his early and preparatory edu-
cation in the district public schools, at
Richfield Springs High School, spent a
year at Colgate University, then came to
Syracuse, entering the Law School of the
University, was graduated Bachelor of
Laws, and admitted to the bar in 1910.
During his university course he taught



in the night schools and took a deep in-
terest in the Boys' Club, an interest that
has never abated.

In 191 1 he was attorney for the comp-
troller in inheritance tax matters in
Herkimer county, was owner and editor
of the Herkimer "Democrat," published
at Herkimer, New York, and in 1912 was
manager of the "Craftsman," a magazine
published in New York City. In 1913 he
became a member of the law firm, Godelle,
Harding & Wiles, of Syracuse, and in
1914 organized the law firm, of Wiles,
Neily & Nichols, his present partnership.
In 1914 he was appointed assistant cor-
poration counsel of Syracuse by Mayor
Louis Will. He is one of the younger
lights of the Onondaga bar and is meet-
ing with unusual success in his profes-
sion, specializing in municipal and cor-
poration law.

Mr. Wiles has been active in politics
ever since becoming a voter. As editor
of the Herkimer "Democrat," he wielded
a strong influence in county afifairs, was
twice chosen chairman of Democratic
county conventions, and as a campaign
orator contributed largely to party suc-
cess in several campaigns. He bore a very
prominent part in the municipal 'cam-
paign of 1913, his tireless work, his tact-
ful, forcible, eloquent speeches and per-
sonal work contributing to a marked de-
gree in the election of Louis Will for
mayor, by a small plurality after a heated
canvass. In 1915 he was nominee of the
Citizens' and the Democratic parties for
mayor. He gained prominence in the
county by his exposure of graft and offi-
cial delinquency in the erection of the
Onondaga County Tuberculosis Sana-
torium. He is possessed of an intense
public spirit and is deeply concerned in
the betterment of public conditions. Per-
sonal political ambition does not impel
him in his public life, but rather the de-



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