Benjamin Whitman.

Nelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r online

. (page 123 of 192)
Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r → online text (page 123 of 192)
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established that remained throughout the siege. He
was sent to the extreme left of Petersburg, on a flank
movement in support of cavalry, on the 22d of July,
was surrounded by a confederate force and captured,
fighting, sword in hand, by Gen. Wright's Georgia
brigade, and would have been killed after capture but
for the interference of Gen. Wright. He was taken to
Charleston, S. C, with other prominent Federal
officers, and was under fire of the United States
batteries shelling the city. While in Charleston he
suffered from an attack of yellow fever, and was
nursed at the hospital by Dr. Todd, a Kentuckian, a
brother-in-law of President Lincoln and a surgeon
in the confederate army. While convalescing, Col.
Lynch made several attempts to escape, and finally
succeeded, passed through the enemy's lines clothed
in the uniform of a confederate officer, and after many
hardships and perils reached the L'nion lines at
Kingston, N. C, near Newbern. From there he was
sent to Washington and reported to Secretary of War
Stanton, to whom he gave much valuable information.
He was mustered out May 2L 1865. Col. Lvnch was
married in Erie, Pa., September 9, 1869, t.i Clara J.
Grant, daughter of James and Clara (Faulkner) Grant,
both deceased. She was born in Erie, Pa., in 1850,
and died December 10, 1890. Their union was blessed
with four children : Faulkner G., a member of the
city engineer corps, who was married January 8, 1895,
to Rose, daughter of the late John McCarthy; Grant
R., Clara Louise and Charles M. Lynch, jr. Col.
Lynch is a lawyer and has filled numerous offices of
public trust, among them that of district attorney; he
was collector of internal revenue of the Nineteenth
District of Pennsylvania. He is a member of R. W.
Scott Post, No. 464, G. A. R., and Encampment No.
13, U. V. L. The family reside at 321 East Sixth street.

David Brown, Erie, Pa., was born in Erie June 7
1865. He is a son of the late David and Catherine
(Jann) Brown, both natives of Baden-Baden. David
Brown, sr., came to the United States and temporarily
located in Buffalo, then coming to Erie, where he was
married and resided until his death, July 14, 1866. His
wife died February 9, 1889. David Brown, jr., was
educated in the parochial school of St. Mary's at Erie,
and was then apprenticed to learn the molder's trade.
After mastering that he learned the barber's trade, at
which he worked as a journeyman for ten years, then
(1880) establishing a shop on Ninth street opposite his
present location, No. 10 West Ninth street, whither he
removed in 1890. He was married September 10,
1878, to Julia S., daughter of James Byrne, an old resi-
dent of Erie, and an employe of the Erie and Pitts-
burg R. R. Of the children born of this marriage,
two, Ruth Anna and Louis Bernard, died in infancy.
The surviving children are: James David, Robert
Frederick, Catherme Marie and Carl Joseph. The
family reside at 518 West Ninth street, and are mem-
bers of St. Peter's Church.

John Fairbaira, retired manufacturer, I^rie. Pa.,
was born in New-Castle-on-Tyne, England, January

21, 1826. His parents were Stephen and Jane (Jack-
son) Fairbairn, natives of England, where Stephen
Fairbairn was engaged in business with a drug firm.
John Fairbairn received a common school education,
and then learned the iron molder's trade. He came
to the United States in 1846 and located in Erie,
where, through his rare ability as a mechanic, untiring
energy and enterprise, he became identified with sev-
eral of the most extensive manufacturing establish-
ments of that city. In 1866 he became a member of
the firm of Davenport, Fairbairn S: Co., manufacturers
of car wheels and railroad castings. The firm was
succeeded twent) years later by th,it of Davenport &
Fairbairn. In the mr.iniiiiH \li, l-.iirbairn had be-*
come identified with till- Mni.l I imh. ire Company, of
St. Ignace, Mich., the i;n. l ,ii W h. ,1 Works and the
American Fusee Company oi Erie. In 1889 he sold
out his entire interests in all of these concerns to his
partner, W. R. Davenport, and has since lived in re-
tirement. He was married in 1847 to Elizabeth Hub-
bard, of Ent;lisli ,lr^, rnt, bv wlloin 1,,^ ^iv ,llil-

dren: Anna, uil- -I Willi.,,;, \k \. ■, ,,r m. !,,,„,,

Mich.; Frank 1- . I .,,i l.,,i, ,,, -.-,,, ,,-,,,1 K.r lv,,i,-,vl-
vania. New Jers.'v ,in.l 1 )rl,,« .n.- nl tl,r r,li,'kcn,s,l,-rlVr
Typewriter, and pr(>]irietor of the cigar store at 620
State street, Flrie, Pa., and who married Anna B.,
daughter of the late Dwight Crowell, of Shelby, Ohio;
Blanch, wife of Merrick L. Gunnison, of Erie; John C.
Fairbairn, who is engaged in the foundry supply busi-
ness at Buffalo, N. Y.; Florence, widow of the late
William Burt, a banker of St. Ignace, Mich., and
Oscar J. Fairbairn, one of the founders and late of the
Pennsylvania Brass Works at Erie, and now engaged
in business at .Stanfield, Conn. Mr. and Mrs. Fair-
bairn reside at the corner of Eighteenth and Cascade
streets, and are members of the First Presbyterian

Charles Reuben Click, merchant tailor, Erie,
Pa., was born in Easton, Pa., February 27, 1862. He
is a son of the late Moses A. and Abba Glick, both of
whom were natives of Pennsylvania. Moses A. Glick
was a contractor and builder in Bangor, Pa., for a num-
ber of years up to the time of his death, August 31,

1892. His wife survives, and resides at Bangor, Pa.
Charles R. Glick completed his schooling at the acad-
emy in Easton. At 18 he commenced to learn the
business of tailoring, and was engaged therein for three
years at Bangor, Pa. He then went to New York city,
where he studied and learned the art of cutting as
taught at the John J. Mitchell Company's Cutting
School. He was employed as cutter for various mer-
chant tailoring establishments until 1883, when he
openedastoreofhisown at Bangor, Pa. Two years later
he sold out to accept a position in New York city, where
he remained for two years. He was next employed at
Allentown, Pa., where he remained one year, when he
returned to New York city. In 1888 he removed to
Erie, Pa., and was employed as a cutter until February,

1893, when he purchased the merchant tailoring busi-
ness of A. & W. E. Liebel, at 821 State street, which
was thereafter conducted under the firm name of
Glick & Fitting. In February, 1895, he severed his
connection with the above and associated himself with
T. A. Robinson in the merchant tailoring business at
819 State street, under the firm name of Glick & Co.
Mr. Glick was married to Melissa, daughter of Her-
man Godshalk, a retired builder and contractor, of



Bangor, Pa. One child was born of this marriage,
Harvey A. The family attend the First Methodist
Episcopal Church. Mr. Click is a Mason, Knight
Templar and Mystic Shriner. He is one of the trustees
of the Custom Foreman Tailors' Association of Amer-
ica. He was one of the organizers of the local cut-
ters' society, in which he is an active member.

Rev. Andrew Iguasiak was born in Slawienko,
near Obornik, Prussian Pciland, November 6, 1862.
He is a son of John and Katrina Ignasiak, natives of
the same place, wht-re the former still resides, and is
engaged in agricultural pursuits, and where the latter
died September 5, 1881. Father Ignasiak received his
initial schooling in the elementary schools of his native
place, then attending the gymnasium, and next en-
tered the American College at Louvain, Belgium, from
which institution In- was graduated and ordained priest
in the Roman Catholic Church in 1886, and given the
mission to the Frie { I'a.i diocese. He reached Erie
August 21, 188(i, and entered upon the
charge of St. Stanislaus c Imik li. with which he has
ever since been identifnd. si. M.imslaus was organ-
ized in 1883, and the .nnirr stone of the edifice in
which the congregation now worships was laid by
Bishop Tobias Mullen, October 19, 1884. The struc-
ture, located at the northeast corner of East Thirteenth
and Wallace streets, was ample for the accommoda-
tion of its membership, then numbering about eighty
families, and large enough, in the event of its reasonable
growth, to contain the congregation for many years to
come. Within five years the membership of the parish
had increased to more than 300 families, and the building
of a new church edifice was (jecessitated. In 1894 the
original structure was removed to an adjoining lot, and a
new building is in process of erection on the site of the
old one. The estimated cost of the new edifice is SSO,-
000, and its seating capacity will be 1,200. St. Stani-
slaus' school, started by Father Ignasiak with a daily
attendance of sixty scholars during its first session,
has now an average daily attendance of more than 250.
The services of an assistant were rendered necessary
by the growth of the school in 1888, and John Nowak
was employed; and in 1892 two additional teachers
were added from the Felician Sisters of Detroit, Mich.,
and in 1893 a third assistant was added. The societies
of the congregation are: The Sacred Heart Society,
with a membership of 200; the St. Stanislaus Society,
numbering 100 members; the Mother of God Society,
with 150 members; two ladies' societies, and a young
men's society, St. Stanislaus Kotska. The Moniuszko
Dramatic Society, which gives frequent entertainments
for the benefit of the church, and is a healthy social
organization as well, is made up of members of the
congregation. The parsonage, at 516 East Thirteenth
street, which was built by Father Ignasiak in 1887, was
destroyed by fire February 8, 1895, and has been re-
placed by a handsome brick structure.

Alois Piagosky, proprietor of the restaurant at
the northwest corner of Tenth and Parade streets,
Erie, Pa., was born in Wyschin, county of Berent,
Danzig, West Prussia, June 20, 1851, a son of Jacob
Nagosky, who was a prominent hotel man in his native
town. He reared a family of eight children, viz.:
Alois, John, Joseph, August, Frank, Bonney, Dora
(wife of Edward Brinning) and Kate (wife of .\dam
Cumprinski), all residents of Erie. Alois Nagosky

was reared and educated in his native country, and
when 21 years of age emigrated to the United States,
and, locating in Erie, was employed for a time in tin-
stove works of Black & Johnson. He then secured a
position in the Chicago & Erie Stove Works, where
he remained for several years. In 1884 he embarked
in the restaurant business on the corner of Tenth and
Parade streets, and in 1891 built the large store and
brick structure he now owns and occupies. Mr.
Nagosky conducts what might be well termed an up-
to-date restaurant, it being completely equipped with
all modern appurtenances, and, in fact, is one of the
leading restaurants in the city. He was united in
marriage, August 12, 1880, to Miss Minnie, daughter
of George Wagner, of Erie, and to them has been
horn four children: Emma, Dora, Anna and Louise.
Mr. Nagosky is a well-informed man, he speaks and
writes three languages fluently and accurately, and
has demonstrated that he is one of Erie's sound and
influential citizens. He is a public-spirited man,
always taking a lively interest in all things that tend
to the advancement of his adopted city and her in-
dustries. He is a member of the Roman Catholic
Church, of the C. M. B. A., the St. Benedictus Society,
the St. Stanislaus .Society, the Catholic Benevolent
Legion, the G. H. Q., the East Erie Turners and the
Knights of St. John. In politics he is a Democrat.

John Robert Coouey, of the L'nion Ice Com-
pany, F'rie, Pa., born in Erie, October 16, 1856, is a son
of the late John and Margaret Cooney, natives of
County Cork, Ireland, who came to the United States
and located in Erie in 1855. John Cooney, sr., was an
employe of the Erie Gas Company, and died Novem-
ber 18, 1857. His wife survives, and resides in Erie.
John R. Cooney attended the public schools of Erie.
At an early age he found emplovment as brakeman
on the L. S. & M. S. R. R., and later with the E. t\: P.
R. R., being thus employed for four years. He next
engaged in teaming, and in 1880 founded an ice busi-
ness, which he conducted successfully, alone, for ten
years, then consolidating his business with that of the
Erie Ice Company. In the spring of 1893, this com-
pany was consolidated with the People's Ice Com-
pany, the aggregation being thereafter known as the
Union Ice Company. Mr. Cooney has been twice
married; on May 12, 1879, to Emma Crowley, of East
Mill Creek, Erie county. Pa. She died in February,
1890, leaving three children, John, Edward and Mamie.
His second marriage was to Annie R., daughter of
Stephen Murphy, a contractor, of Erie. The family
reside at 437 West Fourth street, and are members of
St. Peter's.

Frederick Jacob Rappold, tailor, Erie. Pa., was
born in Sterrettania, Erie county. Pa., April 29, 1858.
He is a son of the late Karl and Justina (Grotel Rap-
pold, the former a native of Stuttgart, Wurtcmburg,
andthe latter of Edemissenamt Einbeck, Hanover. The
late Karl Rappold coming to the United States, located
m Buffalo, N. Y. After a" short stay in that city he re-
moved to Erie county, Pennsylvania, establishing a
tanning business at Sterrettania, where he remained
from 1850 until his death in 1878. His wife died in
1881. Frederick J. Rappold went to the village school
until his 12th year, when he began work as a farm
hand. In 1872 he began to learn tailoring with S. J.
Steiner, Erie, Pa., and upon besoming a journeyman.



found employment with Daniel Illig, and later withG.
B. Keene, both of Erie city. After six years of serv-
ice with the latter, Mr. Rappold, in 1883, embarked
in the merchant tailoring business for himself on Ninth
street, opposite his present location, 12 West Ninth
street. In 1892 he added to his business a furrier de-
partment. He was married June 13, 1888, to Anna
Catherine, daughter of Martin Zeeb, an old resident of
Erie. Mr. and Mrs. Rappold reside at 221 West
Eleventh street, and attend the German Lutheran

John J. Roemer (whose real name is von Roemer
Starkenburg, but discards all title to nobility like the
rest of the family), was born near Elberfield, in Prus-
sia, August 30, 1843. He is a son of the late Rev. Jno.
J. Roemer (Starkenburg) and Charlotte (von Bartholme)
Roemer. Rev. Mr. Roemer came to the United States
in 1856, filling the pulpits of the German Reformed
Churches in Lewiston, Lockhaven, Pittsburg and other
places, and died in Pittsburg May 30, 1888. His wife,
the daughter of a major of artillery in the service of
the Grand Duke of Berg, was born May 24, 1814, and
died in 1889. John J. Roemer graduated from the
schools in Elberfield in 1856 and was awarded the royal
Prussian premium for best scholarship, when he pre-
pared to follow his parents to the United States, where
they resided. He went into the employ of James Fisk,
Jr., at Montpelier, Vt., and in 1857 followed the water
both on river and sea. Coming west he was employed
by Eli Young in the hotel business, and was soon
made manager of Mr. Young's hotel, until August 22,
1862, when he enlisted in the Sumner infantry and
served in the West Virginia campaign for nine months
and was mustered out as a lieutenant. He then pur-
chased a store at Loweville, Ohio, sold it out after a
short stay and came to Erie, where he found employ-
ment with W. M. Whitley & Co., coal dealers. He
was employed by this firm and its successors (Salts-
man & Co.) until 1873, when in connection with his
forrner employer, R. J. Saltsman, he established a coal
business in Pittsburg. This partnership was dissolved
in 1875^ when Mr. Roemer became the senior member
of the firm of Roemer, Jones & Co. The firm owned
Summer Hill mine, leased other mines and continued
in business under that name until 1877, when it be-
came merged in the Erie & Pittsburg Coal and Coke
Company, of which J. J. Roemer was president and
general agent. During this period he was engaged
individually in the coal business on a large scale, em-
ploying at one time 2,100 men. At this time he be-
came heavily involved as endorser for the firm of
James Ward & Co., Niles, Ohio, through whose failure
he lost his all, the earnings of a busy life. He then
returned to Erie, and in 1879 started the Bootz Manu-
facturing Co. He sold out his interest in this concern
the following year and embarked in the manufacture
of wooden novelties, for which business he organized
a stock company under the name of the Eureka Man-
ufacturing Company until 1886, when the plant was
destroyed by fire. Being used to travel for his own
business, he followed, after his failure, the business of
commercial traveler until July 31, 1893, when he was
appointed deputy collector of internal revenue by Col-
lector Ep. Kearns, was reappointed by the succeeding
collector, E. P. Bigler. Outside his regular business
he is a journalist and writer of no mean pretention,
and his articles appear often in home and other papers.

He contributes to St. Alban's Church, but his attend-
ance is mostly at the First Methodist Episcopal
Church. He married May 24, 1886, Celia, daughter of
the late Dr. J. H. O'Brien, one of the pioneer physi-
cians of Pittsburg, Pa. One child was born of this
union, Bessie, who died April 6, 1892, aged three years
and nine months. Mrs. Roemer is a member of the
Catholic Church. The residence of Mr. and Mrs.
Roemer is at the northeast corner of Second and
Myrtle streets. Mr. Roemer takes an active interest
in city affairs. He was the first to conduct natural gas
in pipes for illuminating purposes, his first experiment
being at the restaurant of^ the late Frederick Struble,
Esq., corner of Eighteenth and State streets, the gas
coming from the well of the then Fortune Oil Com-
pany, whose secretary and manager Mr. Roemer was.
The well was located on Mill Creek and French
streets, south of Eighteenth street. He was one of
the promoters of the ill-fated Pennsylvania Petroleum
R. R., which collapsed owing to the panic of 1873, and
was identified with a good many other projects calcu-
lated to benefit the city.

Alfred Hathaway Murphy, born January 24,
1861, at Erie, Erie county. Pa., is a son of the late Al-
fred and Lucretia (Randall) Murphy, the former a na-
tive of Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, and the latter
of Connecticut. Alfred Murphy was for four years an
officer in the United Slates navy, attached to the
steamer Michigan; was in the employ of the P. & E.
shops for some years, and afterwards engaged in the
business of contracting for the drilling of gas wells.
He died in October, 1891. His wife survives. Alfred
H. Murphy received his education in the public
schools of Erie, and learned the trade of watchmaking.
In 1886 he established himself in the watchmaking
and jewelry business, which he has ever since con-
ducted, and which he is now carrying on at 918 State
street, Erie, Pa. He was married September 17, 1875,
to Carlotta Ward, of Erie. Mr. Murphy belongs to
to the Masonic order and is a member of the
A. O. U. W.

John Heary Collins, Erie, Pa., was born near
Carlisle, Cumberland county, Pa., October 5, 1844. He
is a son of James and Mary (Gerbrick) Collins, the
former a native of Lancaster county, Pennsylvania,
and of Irish descent, and the latter a native of Mary-
land and of Pennsylvania-Dutch extraction. James
Collins is a farmer of Monighan township, York
county. Pa. His wife died in October, 1893. John H.
Collins was educated in the public schools of his na-
tive county. At the breaking out of the war he en-
gaged in business with his father, who was conducting
a distillery in Cumberland county, Pennsylvania. He
enlisted in Co. B, 20th Penn. Cav., at Harrisburg, Pa.,
served throughout the war, in the first division of
Sheridan's cavalry corps, and was mustered out as a
sergeant at Cloud's Mills, Va., April 9, 1865. Imme-
diately thereafter he entered the Bryant & Stratton
Commercial College, Philadelphia, where he devoted
two years to the study of bookkeeping and telegraphy.
He then obtained a position as telegraph operator on
the middle division of the Philadelphia and Erie R. R.,
being first stationed at Wilcox. He was employed as
operator on that division continuously for seven years,
and for the following six years was the agent at St.
Mary's, on the same road. Tiring of this service, he went



to Bradford and invested in oil lands, but this not prov-
ing profitable, he, a year and a half later, purchased
a livery business at North East, Erie county. Pa., and
conducted it for six years. Going to Corr'y, he was
similarly engaged for six years. For one year follow-
ing this he had charge of Jewett's stock farm. He
came to Erie and purchased C. P. Haskins' livery
business, at 1112 East Eleventh street. Mr. Collins
was married November 9, 1870, to Emma, daughter of
the late Isaac Horton, a lumberman of Elk "county,
Pennsylvania. Mr. and Mrs. Collins and daughters,
Maud and Helen, reside at 1104 State street, and are
members of the Universalist Church. Mr. Collins is
a member of the Masonic order, of the K. of P., and
G. A. R.

Perry Arora Gibson, attorney, Erie, Pa., was
born in Washington township, Erie county, Pa., Au-
gust 16, 1857. He is a son of the late Daniel C. and
Maria (Conant) Gibson, the former a native of Penn-
sylvania, and the latter of New York. Jessie Gibson,
the father of Daniel C. Gibson, came with his father,
Nathan Gibson, from Vermont, to the Pennsylvania
colony some years before the Revolutionary war, and
remained for a time in Crawford county. In 1877 he
took out his patent for government lands in Washing-
ton township, Erie county, and the title to portions of
this land still vests in his immediate descendants.
Both Jesse Gibson and his son, Daniel C, pursued
farming throughout their lives, and both filled the
office of justice of the peace for a long term of years.
Perry A. Gibson left the State Normal School at
Edinboro to enter the Iowa State University, from
which institution he was graduated in the class of '83.
Returning to Edinboro, he was for a time engaged in
business with his brother. Dr. V. D. Gibson, a dentist.
He then read law under the preceptorship of John
Proudfit, of Edinboro, was admitted in the United
States courts, June 15, 1886, and was subsequently ad-
mitted to practice before the Supreme Courts of such
States as the character of his business, that of a cor-
poration lawyer, necessitated. Mr. Gibson has been
the proprietor of the Wilcox House since October 1,
1890. He was married November 27, 1891, to Elmira,
daughter of Charles T. Reeder, a descendant of one
of the pioneer families of Erie county, Mr. and Mrs.
Gibson have one child, Opale Reeder Gibson, and re-
side at the Wilcox House. The Reeders are Presby-
terians, and the Gibsons Methodists.

Williatti James Quiuti, undertaker, Erie, Pa.,
was born in the county Tyrone, Ireland, July 29, 1844.
His father died in 1852, and the same year his mother
brought her family to the United States, locating in
Newport, R. I., where she still resides. William J.
Quinn commenced to assist his mother in the support
of the family when but 9 years of age, finding employ-
ment in a cotton factory, where for several years his
hours at hard labor each day were from 5:30 a. M. to 7:30
p. M. At the breaking out of the war he was employed
in a lead factory, the business of which was at that
period exclusively confined to the making of bullets.
On November 28, 1861, William enlisted and was mus-
tered into the service December 21, in Co. A, 1st R. I.
Cav. (then known as the 1st New England Cav.), and
served until December 1, 1864. His regiment was
with the Army of the Potomac, and the middle mili-
tary division, Major-General Sheridan commanding.

Private Quinn's discharge certifies to his brave parti-
cipation in engagements in Cedar Mountain, Gaines-
ville Station, Groveton Station, Bull Run, Nolan's
Ford, Jefferson, Kelly's Ford, Stevensburg, Beverly
Ford, Middleburg, Little River, Culpepper, Rapidan,
Auburn Station, White House Landing, Malvern Hill.
Cedar Creek, and two each at Rappahannanck Station
and Chancellorsville. After being mustered out he
learned the carpenter's trade in Newport, R. I., and
Worcester, Mass., and thereafter followed his trade
at Newport until 1870, when he established an
undertaking business which, two years later, he
removed to Erie, Pa., where he has since re-
resided and is still engaged in the undertaking busi-

Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r → online text (page 123 of 192)