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Nelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the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 29 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Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the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 29 of 192)
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1890 — Geo. E. Wetherton. Diploma Den-
tal Dept. of Central University, Louisville.

1890— Wm. T. Magill. Diploma Phila-
delphia Dental College.

1891— C. O. Jerrel. Diploma University
of Iowa.

1891— Geo. W. Cochran. Diploma Phila-
delphia Dental College.

1891.— Wm. E. Linn. Diploma Pennsyl-
vania College of Dental Siirgerv.

1891— L. E. Craine. Diploma Eclectic
Medical College of Des Moines, Iowa.

1891— T. A. Hatch. Practiced since 1873.

1892— C. C. Pollitt. Diploma Ohio Col-
lege of Dental .Surgery.

1892— O. O. Williams. Diploma Hahne-
mann Medical College, Chicago.

1898— H. C. Sturdevant. Diploma Phila-
delphia Dental College.

1893— Jno. A. Clarke. Diploma Philadel-
phia Dental College.

1893— S. H. Swift. Diploma University
of Michigan.

1893— D. N. Swift. Diploma University
of Michigan.

1895— John Walter Glas. Diploma West-
ern Reserve University at Cleveland.


The Erie Society of Dentists was organ-
ized February 6, 1895, with the following
officers: President, Dr. W. E. Magill; vice-
president, Dr. L. Esseck ; secretary. Dr. F.
C. Callahan ; treasurer, Dr. B. D. Schlau-


Newspapers of the County,

THE earliest newspaper printed in the
county was the Mirror, started in
Erie by George Wyeth in 1808. It
lasted but a short time. In 1812 the
Northern Sentinel appeared, with R.
J. Curtis as editor. It was discontinued at
the end of a year, but revived in 1816 under
the name of the Genius of the Lakes. The
title was again changed to the Phoenix, and
finally to the Reflector, and the paper was
printed in Erie till 1819 or 1820, when it was
removed to Mayville, N. Y., where it lived
but a short time. Meanwhile, another journal
had sprung into existence. This was the Pa-
triot, founded in 1818 by Zeba Willis. It ran
a course of one year in Erie, when the office was
moved to Cleveland, and became the basis of
the Herald of that city.


The first paper in Erie that came to stay
was the Weekly Gazette, established on the

15th of January, 1820, by Joseph M. Ster-
rett. Mr. Sterrett was assisted in the edi-
torial conduct of his paper at various times
by James Buchanan (not the President),
J. Hoge Waugh, John Riddell and others.
John Shaner was associated in its publication
from 1835 to 1842, when J. P. Cochran and
George W. Riblet took control. In 1845,
Mr. Sterrett resumed charge, and on the 10th
of September, 1846, he associated I. B. Gara
with him, who edited the paper till May 8,
1865, when it was sold to S. A. Davenport.
The latter not being a practical newspaper
man was obliged to turn over the management
to others, and it had numerous editors dur-
ing the period between 1865 and 1873. Among
them were E. L. Clark, John R. Graham, R.
Lyle White, James Hendricks, B. F. McCarty,
and perhaps others. On the 5th of June,
1873, the Gazette was purchased from Mr.
Davenport by F. A. Crandall, who retained
possession until February 1, 1882. Mr. Cran-



dall started the Saturday Evening Gazette,
March 20, 1875, and changed it to the Sunday
Morning Gazette on the 17th of June in the
same year. During its middle age, Hon.
Gideon J. Ball and William Kelley were fre-
quent contributors to the Gazette. Among
the later editors of the paper were W. G.
McKean, John R. Hess and F. A. Mallory.
The oifice and good will were purchased by
the Dispatch Company in 1890. The Sunday
edition was discontinued in 1894, but the
weekly edition is still printed, under the title
of the Dispatch- Gazette.

Horace Greeley worked as a journeyman in
the office of the Gazette during the winter of
1830-31. Among those who learned the print-
ing trade in the Gazette office was Sidney
Kelsey, a well-known newspaper man. The
Gazette has always been anti-Democratic in
its politics.


Was started in 1830, as the result of a quarrel
over the Masonic order, to which the Gazette
was hostile. The first editor was T. B. Bar-
num, who was succeeded in 1832 by H. L.
Harvey. The latter printed a specimeu copy
of a daily in 1836. Among the editors and
publishers of the paper from 1837 to 1843
were S. ^\'. Randall, Thomas Laird, Hiram A.
Beebe, J. M. Kuester, W. McKinstry, Wm.
A. Galbraith and John W. Douglass. In May,
1843, the office wn\s purchased by A. P. Durlin
and B. F. Sloan. These gentlemen tried the
experiment of a semi-weekly for a few months
in 1849. Mr. Durlin withdrew from the con-
cern on the 26th of January, 1856, and was
succeeded by M. M. Moore. This partnership
continued until January 1, 1859, when Mr.
Moore retired. On the 1st of January, 1861,
Mr. Sloan sold the office to Andrew Hopkins.
This gentleman disposed of it to Benjamin
Whitman and James I. Brecht on the 17th of
January. 1862. Their partnership continued
until April 1, 1865. Mr. Whitman then be-
came sole proprietor and remained such until
December 1, 1878, when the office was pur-
chased by R. B. Brown. The latter started
the Daily Evening Observer on the 15th of
October, 1881, which was discontinued in
1884. Mr. Brown sold to Eugene J. Miller in
December, 1885, who, in turn, sold to John C.
Brady. The latter consolidated the office with
that of the Sunday Graphic, Deceniber 13,

1886, the joint papers being edited by F. E.
Woods. The consolidated establishment was
purchased by F. S. Phelps on the 1st of De-
cember, 1892, who united it with the Times
office February 1, 1894, by which company
the Observer is still published. Under the
management of Mr. Whitman the Observer
secured a State-wide reputation, and became
the most prosperous paper ever known in the
county. It has always been Democratic.

The earliest daily papers issued in the county
were printed in the Observer office, first in
1836, as the Dai/v Observer, and second as
the Dai /y But/et in, m 1861. The latter was
published by W. H. Harris, who received the
daily telegraphic reports of war news at his
restaurant. State street and the Park, had
them issued in the form of a small newspaper,
and continued their publication for a month
or two.


In 1851, a small paper, named the Dis-
patch, was started at Waterford by Joseph S.
M. Young. When the railroad war broke
out, it took such a lively part on the side of
the "rippers," or "anti-railroad men," that
their leaders induced Mr. Young to remove
his office to Erie. This he did in 1856. In a
short time after the removal, the office was
completely destroyed by fire. Its friends club-
bed together and bought Mr. Young new ma-
terial, which gave him a great advantage over
his competitors. During 1861, a daily was
started, which was only continued a few
months. The office was purchased on the 1st
of February, 1864, by B. F. H. Lynn. The
daily was revived on May 22. 1864, and has
been printed regularlj' ever since. Mr. Lynn
became embarrassed and the establishment
was sold at Sheriff''s sale. After that it was
conducted bv various parties, among whom
were S. Todd Perley, Azro Goff", W. P. Atkin-
son ; Willard, Redway & Cook; Willard &
Brewer; Willard, Brewer & Hooker; Camp,
Belknap & Johnson, and the Dispatch Print-
ing Co. Among the best known editors the
Dispatch has had were J. R. Willard and
Eben Brewer, both now living in Chicago.
For a time the paper was managed by W. J.
Robinson. Among those who have been on
its editorial force were Nelson Baldwin, Eu-
gene Camp, W. G. McKcan, Sam Woods,
D. P. Robbins, A, F. Moses, Otto Pettit, D.


S. Crawford, Frank Bray, Allen McKean and
J. J. McAndrews. The paper was purchased
by'S. W. Bolles in December, 1894, who is
now its editor and publisher.

The Dispatch started as an independent
paper, but changed to Republican about 1860,
and has ever since advocated that party. From
1864 to 1878, the Dispatch may be said to
have been practically the only English daily
in Erie. Others were started at various pe-
riods, but the most successful of them only
lasted a year or two.

The publications issued from the ofHce are
the Daily Dispatch, Evoiiiig- Xc-vs. and
IVcckly Dispatch- Gazette.


This journal, a Democratic evening paper,
first appeared on the 20th of July, 1878. Its
editors were James R. Burns and H. C. Mis-
simer, teachers in the Erie High School. After
it had been printed two or three months the
paper was purchased by William L. Scott, and
a weekly edition was added. Thomas F.
O'Brien was placed in charge and continued
as manager until after the election in 1881.
Nelson Baldwin became managing editor in
February, 1888, and continued in charge till
the first Monday in December, 1898, when he
became Collector of the port. He was first
succeeded by S. E. Holly, and on Oct. 7, 1895,
bv T- M. Cooper. The latter is assisted by
S'. E. Holly, W. D. Kinney, Frank Weiss and
others. The business managers of the estab-
lishment are Wm. Wallace and W. P. Atkin-
son, and the office is owned by the Herald
Printing and Publishing Company, limited.
Their publications are the Evening' Herald,
the Weekly Herald, and the Sunday Mcsseti-
g'cr. W. P. Atkinson is general manager of
the newspaper branch of the office.


The Daily Times was started as an inde-
pendent evening paper, on the co-operative
plan, April 12, 1888, bv nine union printers.
Later all retired but J. H. Mead and J. F.
Liehel, who became associated with J. H.
Kelley, John Miller, Jr., and D. S. Crawford,
Mr. Kelley being the managing and Maj.
Crawford the local editor. In the course of
time Mr. Miller and Maj. Crawford withdrew.
The Graphic and the Observer offices were
consolidated with the Times in February.

1894, F. S. Phelps becoming the managing
editor. John J. McAndrews was local editor
after Maj. Crawford, until June, 1895, when
J. F. Liebel took charge of that department.
The publications of the company are the
Evening Times, the Weekly Observer and the
Sunday Graphic.


Independent in politics, was started in
1892 by Mr. Hathaway of Cleveland. It was
purchased by the Dispatch Company in 1893,
and edited by Otto Pettit until the fall of
1894, w'hen Sam Woods became the editor.


A Mr. Schuefflen started the Ziischaiier
[Spectator) in 1852. It was purchased by C.
Moeser, in 1855, and by E. E. Stuerznickel in
1861. On the 1st of January, 1877, Mr.
Stuerznickel sold the Ziischauer to F. G.
Gorenflo. In March, 1890, Mr. Gorenflo
commenced a daily edition. This was con-
solidated with the Tageblatt. a German daily
started in 1884 by Otto Luedicke. Hugo
Held became the manager. In October, ]8'59,
the company purchased the Sonntaggsgast,
and the two papers have since been published
from the same office by Held, Gorenflo & Co.
The name of the weekly edition is the Tage-
blatt-Sonntaggsgast, Frank Wiess being the
editor. Both papers are Republican, with
independent tendencies.


The Lake Shore I'isitor was commenced
in 1874, as the organ of the Catholics of the
Erie diocese. The writing was mainly done
by Bishop Mullen until 1875, when Rev.
Thomas A. Casey became editor, who contin-
ued until his death, February 9, 1894, since
when Bishop Mullen has been in charge. The
first publisher was B. F. McCarty, who was
succeeded by Thomas F. O'Brien.

The Erie Sunday Graphic was established
by Boyle & McCaulev on the 20th of May,
1880. In the spring of 1882, John T. Boyle
purchased the interest of his partner, and on
the 27th of August, 1882, he sold the office to
Jacob Bender. The office was purchased by
Woods & Hickernell in the spring of 1884,
and Mr. Woods became sole owner in 1885.
The Observer and Graphic were consolidated
December 31. 1886. In 1898 the office was


purchased by F. S. Phelps, who edited the
two papers until February, 1894, when they
were united with the Dailv Times. In poli-
tics the Graphic is independent, with Demo-
cratic leanings.

The Erie Advertiser was started on the 1st
of April, 1876, by John M. Glazier. Dr. D.
P. Robbins purchased the plant November
10, 1891, and organized the Advertiser Print-
ing Company, limited, April 18, 1893. The
paper was independent, with Republican pro-
clivities, until the consolidation mentioned

The Highland Light was established in
1892 by Rev. O. O". Wiard as a religious
paper. It espoused the cause of the O. U. A.
M. in 1893, and that of the A. P. A. in 1894.
February 27, 1894, it was united with the
Advertiser. The joint papers were published
by the Advertiser Printing Company. Dwight
J. Robbins was editor and manager. The
Advertiser-Highland Light was discontinued
in the fall of 1895, and succeeded by The
Truth., under the same management.

The Sunday Messenger was started Feb-
ruary 4, 1894, with S. E. Holly as editor, and
Frank E. Woods as telegraph editor. Otto
Pettit became editor, and was succeeded by
J. H Kelley in the spring of 1895. Mr. Kelly
was followed by F. E. Woods, as editor, on
Oct. 13, 1895. The paper is issued by the
Herald Company, and takes no part in politics.

The weekly editions of the Herald.,
Dispatch and Gazette and Observer are re-
ferred to above.

The Sonntaggsgast was established in 1881
by Frank Weiss & Co. It was sold to the
Herald Company in 1886, was purchased by
the Tageblatt-Zuschauer Company in 1889,
and is now issued from the latter office, under
the name of the Tageblatt- Sonntaggsgast, w\ih
Mr. Weiss in editorial charge.

The Arbiter- Zeit ling (independent, with
strong Socialistic notions) was started by
Samuel Weiss in August, 1891. In 1892 he
was succeeded by Charles Backofen. M. Ph.
Jahn too< charge in the spring of 1893. He
died early in 1895, since when the paper has
been conducted by Samuel Weiss.

The People, organ of the Populist party,
was founded by a cooperative company on
October 1, 1892. It has been edited from' the
first by Samuel Weiss, aided by a corps of


The Erie Chronicle was started by Samuel
Perley, in 1840, as a rival Whig organ to the
Gazette. Mr. Perley moved the office to

In 1846 a second rival of the Gazette made
its appearance under the title of the Commer-
cial Advertiser, with J. P. Cochran as editor.
In 1850 the paper passed into the hands of A.
H. Caughey, who, at the end of a year and a
half sold it to J. B. Johnson. The latter
changed the name to the Constitution, which
became the advocate of the " railroad men " as
against the " rippers " during the eventful era
of the railroad war. A party of "rippers"
entered the office in 1855, "pied" the type
and threw the press into the street. The paper
was resuscitated by R. Lyle White, who kept
it up for a short time. He issued a daily bul-
letin for some months in 1858.

The first outspoken abolition paper in the
city was the True American, started by
Compton & Moore in 1853. It was published
for a time by James Perley and Henry Catlin.
The latter finally became sole editor and pro-
prietor. The paper died in 1861 or '02.

The Express, started in 1857 by E. C.
Goodrich, as a rival Democratic paper to the
Observer, WAS merged into the True American
in a few months.

The daily Republican was printed some
two or three years, commencing about 1867.
During its brief life it had several editors and
publishers, none of whom made a financial
success of the enterprise.

The Argus was brought into existence
mainly through the labors of S. Todd Perley.
As a basis for the enterprise, he effected a
consolidation of the offices of the Union City
Times and the Corry Republican, the material
of which was moved to Erie on the 1st of May,
1875. A daily and a weekly paper were is-
sued for some months, but failed to secure a
living patronage.

R. Lyle White, published the Daily Bul-
letin for a few months about 1874.

The Lake City Daily, a penny paper, was
printed by Woods, Constable & Co., three
young graduates of the high school in 1878,
and lasted about a year. It was ultimately
merged in the Herald.

The first German paper in Erie was the
Unsere World {Our World), founded by Carl

Ih ir" /^^tis



Benson in 1851. The name was changed to
the Frcie Pressc (Free Press) in 1860. The
paper went down in 1868.

The Weekly Leicchtthurm (Light-House)
was established in 1860 by Baetzel & Atkin-
son. It was purchased about 1873 by Merhoff
& Wallenhorst. Wallenhorst soon retired, and
H. Merhoft" assumed sole control. In April,
1875, Otto Luedicke became a partner with
Merhoff, and assumed editorial charge. The
Daily Leuchtthuriii -WAS, started in June, 1875.
Mr. Luedicke withdrew in 1879. and was suc-
ceeded by Merhoff, Boyer cS: Rastatter. Mer-
hoff and Rastatter sold out, and John F. Boyer
became sole proprietor in 1880. October 1,
1882, Mr. Luedicke resumed control under a
lease from Mr. Boyer. The paper finally gave
up the ghost.

The Star of Libertv, a monthly publication,
established A'pril 1, 1882, by H. R. Storrs, as
an advocate of liberal views on the liquor
question, ended its career with the death of the
proprietor, about 1885.

The Jonrna/de Noticias (General News)
enjoyed the distinction for several years of be-
ing the only paper in the Portuguese language
in the United States. It was established on
the 27th of October, 1877, by A. M. & John
M. Vincent. The office was removed to the

The Erie Sunday Globe was started by R.
R. Cornell, as an independent paper. After
a spasmodic career, it was wound up for good
in January, 1895, Mr. Cornell locating in the

The Morning Record was born on August
22, 1895, and departed this life on September
2 ensuing. A. ,S. Porter was editor and pub-


Below is a list of the newspapers in the
county, outside of Erie, in the year 1895. The
figures show the time they were founded :
Albion. — Blizzard, weekly, 1882.
CoTvy.— Fiver, daily, 1884.
Leader, daily, 1884.
Telegraph, weekly, 1863.
Herald, weekly, 1876.
Democrat, weekly. 1890.

Edinboro Educational Independent,

weekly, 1891.
Independent, weekly, 1881.
Conneauttee Wave, 1893.

Giiard. — Cosmopolite, weekly 1867.

Mill WW&ge.— Herald, weekly, 1876.

North East.— ^ww, weekly, 1868.

Advertiser, weekly, 1884.
Breeze, weekly, 1893.

Union C\i\.— Times, weekly, 1870.

Wa.terioxA.— Leader, weekly, 1878.

Wattsburg. — Sentinel, weekly, 1884.

[See the chapters relative to the places
above named for a history of the several pub-


I The Northwestern Editorial Association,

organized in Erie about 1865, was composed
of newspaper men in Warren, Erie, Crawford,
Mercer, Venango, Butler and several other
counties. It had two or three annual meet-
ings, and then quietly expired. A meeting to
resuscitate it, or rather to start a new associa-
tion, was held in Erie, in January, 1895.
This resulted in the establishment of the
Northwestern Pennsylvania Press Associa-
tion, which seems to have a prosperous career
before it. Their annual meeting in Erie on
July 12, 1895, was one of the most pleasant
gatherings ever known in the cit)-.

The Erie Press Club, composed of news-
paper men and business men in harmony with
their eftbrts to build up the city, was started
in 1887, and had a brilliant career for several
years. Through its influence the Pennsylvania
Editorial Association came to Erie on June
26,1888, and remained three days. The visit
of the Association and the events connected
with it are remembered as among the most in-
teresting and important features in the pro-
gress of the city. The Club went out of ex-
istance about 1891. During its brief life it
probably did as much toward the growth
and reputation of Erie as any organization
ever started within its limits. '


Joseph M. Sterrett, for years the Nestor of
the "Erie press, died at his residence in the lat-
ter city, on the 20th of June, 1888. He had
held the positions of County Commissioner.
State vSenator, Associate Judge and Postmas-
ter of Erie.

Isaac B. Gara, long the associate of Judge
Sterrett, was Enrolling Commissioner for the
draft in 1863, Deputy Secretary of the Com-



monwealth and Postmaster of Erie. He died
June 15, 1895.

George W. Riblet was Director of the
Poor, and held numerous positions of trust in
the city.

Gideon J. Ball was State Treasurer, Chief
Clerk to the Sixth Auditor of the Treasury,
member of the Assembly six terms, and Pay-
master in the army during the war for the

B. F. Sloan was Postmaster of Eiie, clerk
to the Pension Committee of Congress, and
Secretary of the Erie Water Department.
He is now a resident of Rochester, N. Y.

Benjamin Whitman is a resident of Erie,
engaged in literary and business pursuits. He
has held the positions of Water Commissioner,
member of the Board of World's Fair Com-
missioners of Pennsylvania, and Executive
Commissioner of the latter body.

Jno. W. Douglas has lived in Washington
City many years.

M. M. Moore still resides in Erie, where
he has been elected to several city offices, in-
cluding Alderman and School Director.

Andrew Hopkins died in Washington,
Pa., where he was publishing a Democratic

Robert B. Brown served as a member of
the Assembly from Clarion county in 1869
and 1870. He moved from Erie tn Mf adville,
purchased the Mcsscngvr of that city, and is
now Postmaster there.

F. A. Crandall went to Buffalo and held
prominent positions on the press of that city.
He now occupies the post of Superintendent
of Public Documents at the National Capital.

Nelson Baldwin is Collector of the Port of

W. L. Scott was twice elected to Congress,
and became very prominent as a political lead-
er. He died September 19, 1891. The funeral
was attended by President Cleveland, Governor
Pattison and a number of eminent public men
and railroad officials.

W. P. Atkinson is prominently identified
with the Herald Printing and Publishing
Company of this city ; also publisher of the
Erie Directory.

W. McKinstry is one of the editors and
publishers of the Fredonia (N. Y.) Censor.

A. P. Durlin, after a long newspaper ca-
reer in Iowa, returned to Erie and established
a job printing office.

W. A. Galbraith is the honored ex-Presi-
dent Judge of the Erie county Courts. He
has been remarkably successful both in law
and business.

Joseph S. M. Young went from Erie to
Pittsburg, and became a specialist in medi-

B. F. H. Lynn, after a yaried career, was
found dead in the house of a relatiye atMauch

E. E. Stuerznickel was .Sheriff from 1877
to 1880.

Samuel Parley was Prothonotary from 1851
to 1854.

A. H. Caughey was one of the professors
in Lafayette College, at Easton, for several
years, and is now engaged in the Presbyterian
miniiitry. •

J. B. Johnson was a member of the Assem-
bly and State Senator.

Henry Catlin is still a resident of Erie,
engaged in the Downing insurance office.

Jacob Bender died early in 1895 in New
York, where he had been working as a com-

S. A. Davenport is one of Erie's leading
lawyers. Though long owner of the Gazette,
he never took an active part in its manage-

W. G. McKean. after a brief newspaper
career in Dakota, returned to Erie, and devotes
his time mainly to literary and general press

Sidney Kelsey lives a life of retirement in

John C. Brady has been Mayor of Erie,
and is one of its most pushing lawyers and
business men.

S. Todd Perley is a pension attorney in

Dr. D. P. Robbins is a resident of Erie,
engaged in business and literature.

|. R. Willard is a prosperous broker in

Eben Brewer is also a resident of Chicago.
He was conspicuously identified with the exe-
cutive department of the World's Fair.

James H. Burns served two terms in the
Assembly, was the Democratic nominee for
Congress in 1888, and has long been a pro-
fessor in the Erie high school.

H. C. Missimer, after serving many years
as principal of the high school, is now Super-
intendent of the city schools.



John R. Hess and John Miller, Jr., are
department editors on the Providence (R. I.)
youriial .

Thomas A. Casey was long in charge of
St. Patrick's congregation and St. Peter's
Cathedral congregation in Erie, and Vicar
General of the Erie diocese. He died Feb-

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 29 of 192)