John W. (John Woolf) Jordan.

Encyclopedia of Pennsylvania biography : illustrated (Volume 3) online

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pany. He is an energetic young business

He is a Republican in politics, well in-
formed on all political questions, but never
an office seeker or holder. He and his wife
are members of the Second United Presby-
terian Church, and are both active in church
and Sunday school work.

He married, July 6, 1905, Anna E.
Dougherty, daughter of Dr. George Alex-



anda- and Rebecca M. (Colkey) Dougherty.
Dr. George Dougherty was a native of Ire-
land, and emigrated to America in 1840 with
his parents, crossing the sea again in 1859
to obtain his medical education in Glasgow,
Scotland. He was a prominent physician
of Washington county for many years. His
widow still survives him. Children of Wal-
ter G. Edmonds : Qarence George Dough-
erty, Margaret Rebecca, Walter Roy, Ray-
mond Charles, Harold Franklin, and Doro-
thy Mae.

LYNE, Wickliffe Campbell,

Prominent liife Under^rriter.

Wicklifife Campbell Lyne, Pittsburgh
manager of the Union Central and senior
ex-president of the Pittsburgh Life Under-
writers' Association, is a Virginian by birth,
a Pennsylvanian by residence and business
interests for more than forty years.

He belongs to one of the oldest and best
families of Virginia, represented with dis-
tinction by Colonial and Revolutionary of-
ficers and by members of the House of Vir-
ginia Burgesses, Congress and President's
Cabinet. The family came originally from
Bristol, England — the resident town of Wil-
liam Penn — and brought with them the
family's coat-of-arms, honored by the
character and achievement of ancient Scotch
and English ancestry.

William Lyne, his great-grandfather, was
an ardent patriot of the American Revolu-
tion, serving on the Committee of Safety,
1775, and colonel of minute-men, 1776, and
before and during the Revolution as a
prominent member of the House of Bur-
gesses, George Washington, Thomas Jef-
ferson, Patrick Henry, Peyton Randolph
and Edmund Pendleton being actively asso-
ciated with him as fellow members. Prom-
inent also in family connection were Colonel
George Baylor, of Washington's staflf ; Gen-
eral Thomas Dunbar (descendant of Earl
of Dunbar), of the French and Indian War,
the commander-in-chief of the British

forces in North America after Braddock's
defeat; Sir Richard Waller, "the Hero of
Agincourt," whose capture of the French
Prince of Orleans added the ducal crest to
his arms, is in the direct line of descent on
Mr. Lyne's mother's side — Mary Dunbar
Edwards. The congressional tariiif leader,
William Lyne Wilson, author of the "Wil-
son Bill" and Postmaster General in Cleve-
land's Cabinet, was nephew of Dr. Robert
Baylor Lyne, father of Wickliffe C. Lyne.

W. C. Lyne, after graduating in 1870
with honor in classics and sciences at
Bethany College, West Virginia, engaged in
educational work for fifteen years, serving
with marked efficiency and success as
principal of the Classical Academy at Bur-
gettstown, Pennsylvania; Normal School,
Claysville, Pennsylvania; principal of the
Washington, Pennsylvania, high school, and
for five years as principal of Park School in
Pittsburgh; and lecturer for several years
on literature and history in a normal college.
His reputation for scholarly work brought
him the ofier of the chair of Latin and
Greek at Bethany College, the chair of
belles letters from another honored insti-
tution of learning, the presidency of a nor-
mal college in Ohio, and of a State normal
college in Pennsylvania. Declining these,
he accepted the position of manager for
Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia
of National Life of Vermont, in which field
his executive ability, unswerving integrity
and business initiative made him con-
spicuously successful. He was recognized
by the Governor of the State as one of the
foremost underwriters of Pennsylvania.
His services were sought by other larger
corporations, and he accepted the general
management in Pittsburgh and adjoining
territory of the Union Central — the largest
financial institution in Ohio, and one of the
leading great life insurance companies. He
was one of the organizers of the Pittsburgh
Life Underwriters, served twice as chair-
man of the executive committee and once as
president. His writings and discussions of



life insurance attracted wide attention and
were favorably noticed by the European
press; and his addresses before Alumni Col-
lege Associations and State conventions were
scholarly and forcible. He was one of the
three Pennsylvania underwriters appointed
to secure anti-rebate legislation at Harris-
burg, and the successful passage of this bill
was followed by similar statutes in over
forty States.

Mr. L>iie has been identified with civic
and public interests, serving on the director-
ate of a national bank, trust company, and
insurance company, and as trustee of the
Pittsburgh Art Society, the Mozart Musical
Society, board of directors of Bethany Col-
lege, Sons of American Revolution, and as
a member of the Academy of Science and
Art. Historical Society, the American
Academy of Political and Social Science of
Philadelphia. He is a member of the Pitts-
burgh Chamber of Commerce and the
Duquesne Club.

Mr. Lyne's children are: Wicklifife
Bull, of Princeton, 1901 ; Robert Addison,
Sarah Harman and Virginia Brown. His
wife, Mary Winters, deceased, was a
Colonial Dame by direct descent of Gover-
nors Henry Bull, William Hutchison and
John Coggeshall, Colonial executives of
Rhode Island and founders of Portsmouth
and Newport.

BOOTH, James J.,

I<ai-ge Contractor, Financier.

Few men in Pittsburgh are better known
and none are more highly respected than
is James J. Booth, for many years head of
the famous contracting firm of Booth &
Flinn, but now withdrawn from the arena
of business. Mr. Booth has been for more
than half a century a resident of the Iron
City and is officially connected with a num-
ber of her leading financial institutions, be-
ing also closely associated with her political,
fraternal and social life.

James J. Booth was born June 13, 1836,

in Dukinfield, Cheshire, England, son of
Jonathan and Ellen (Hines) Booth, both of
whom were bred in that neighborhood. In
early life he was placed at work in a cotton
mill, but ambition was a marked feature in
his character and he was not satisfied to
face a future circumscribed by the walls of
a factory. Being denied his wish to learn
the bricklayer's trade, he ran away from
home in 1854 and came to the United
States, settling in Pittsburgh, where he
found employment on the river, but soon
secured an opportunity to gratify his long-
cherished desire. After learning the trade
and for a time working both independently
and as a journeyman, he began in 1869 to
take contracts for street construction and
buildings. In 1878 the firm of Booth &
Flinn was established, and five years later
began to manufacture brick. The work of
the firm was for some years limited chiefly
to street paving and they constructed many
of the finest streets in Pittsburgh, including
Winebiddle, Linden and Simon avenues and
McPherson and Barton streets. They also
paved Perm, Liberty and Second avenues
with Belgian blocks. Gradually enlarging
the original scope of their undertakings,
they built in 1888 the Citizens' Traction rail-
way and the following year the Central,
soon becoming the leading contractors of
Pittsburgh. At the present day this great
concern builds railways and bores tunnels
through mountains as easily as in earlier
days it paved an ordinary street. This phe-
nomenal success is mainly due to the sys-
tematic management, resolute courage and
great tenacity of purpose of Mr. Booth.
Fertile in resources and alert to seize op-
portunity, of kindly disposition and invari-
ably just, he endeared himself to his asso-
ciates and subordinates, winning their most
loyal co-operation.

Mr. Booth has retired from the firm in
order to devote more time to his extensive
private interests. He is a director of the
Commercial National Bank, the Common-
wealth Trust Company and the Oakland



Savings and Trust Company, holding the
office of vice-president in the last-named in-
stitution. He is also a director in the
National Fire-Proofing Company. Al-
though no longer engaged in business he is
the custodian of numerous interests none of
which he allows to suffer for lack of close
and able attention and industry.

Seldom, indeed, is it that a man as suc-
cessful in business as is Mr. Booth takes
the keen and helpful interest in civic affairs
which he has ever manifested. Affiliating
with the Republicans and always fully
posted on the subject of politics, he is fre-
(juently consulted in regard to matters of
municipal importance. As the owner of
considerable real estate he has done much
for the development of certain sections of
the city, possessing as he does clear and
sound judgment in regard to the dormant
possibilities of landed property. No good
work done in the name of charity or religion
seeks his co-operation in vain and his bene-
factions are bestowed with rare discrimina-
tion and thoroughness. He is president and
director of St. Francis' Hospital, contribut-
ing liberally to the aid and support of other
benevolent institutions. He belongs to the
Botanical Society of Western Pennsylvania
and is a past master in the Masonic fra-
ternity, also affiliating with the Independent
Order of Odd Fellows, and the Knights
Templar. He is a member of Trinity Prot-
estant Episcopal Church, aiding generously
in its work and support.

The career of Mr. Booth demonstrates
the possibilities for successful accomplish-
ment in the business world — possibilities
that exist only for the man able to avail
himself of them, and this Mr. Booth has
abundantly proved himself to be. Through
energy, perseverance and honorable dealing
he has acquired not only a handsome com-
petence but the respect of the entire com-
munity and a position of merited prom-
inence. His skill as an organizer and his in-
sight into character which enabled him to
put the right man in the right place were

important factors in his prosperity. His
face is that of the ideal self-made man, the
man whose sources of success are in his own
nature and not in outward circumstances.
It is the face of one who has prospered not
only by reason of strong will and ex-
ceptional ability, but by sterling integrity, a
genial, kindly disposition and an unaffected
liking for his fellow beings, — the face of a
man who has smiled on the world and the
world has smiled on him.

Mr. Booth married, March 4, 1861, Pris-
cilla Jane, daughter of Samuel and Drucilla
Turbot, of Irish extraction, and they are
the parents of the following children:
Ellen, widow of Harry E. Bray ; Ulrich
Dahlgren; Carrie; Ethel May; and Blanche

A man of domestic tastes, Mr. Booth has
always been devoted to his home and family
and it has ever been one of his greatest
pleasures to gather his friends about him at
his own fireside. He is one of the few now
living who can remember the Pittsburgh of
"sixty years since." Through a period of
three score years he has watched the marvel-
ous growth of the now world-famed city
and nobly has he contributed to its promo-
tion. May the Pittsburgh of the future be
able to boast of many citizens of the type
of James J. Booth !

MEILY, John Jr.,

Iron Manufacturer,

The lineal descent of John ]\Ieily (de-
ceased) is from John Meily, born in 1776,
died 1S44, and his wife, who was a daugh-
ter of Martin Oberholzer, born 1733, died
181 5. These are two ancient and well
known Lebanon county families, and John
Meily, for many years one of the leading
manufacturers of Lebanon, was well known
and highly esteemed in commercial and
private circles over the State of Pennsyl-
vania. He was a grandson of John Meily
and son of Martin Meily, a well known
character in Lebanon county history.



Martin Meily was born in 1801, and
furnished a striking example of the self-
made, self-reliant man, who rose in life by
sheer power of will and energy. Reared
upon the farm, he had none of the advant-
ages of early education, but soon realized
that this was too serious a handicap to
carry through life. He learned the potter's
trade, and also began a course of home
study and reading that in a few years
placed him intellectually far above his as-
sociates and prominently before the pub-
lic. His fitness was recognized, and after
reaching man's estate he was elected justice
of the peace, re-elected, serving in all ten
years, and for three years was a commis-
sioned notary public. Being quick to see
and avail himself of an opportunity for ad-
vancement, he seized such time as could be
spared from his public duties and devoted
himself to the study of law, particularly the
law of real estate, affecting titles to prop-
erty. He became an expert authority on
this subject and was elected surveyor of
Lebanon county. So highly was he re-
garded in this office that he was several
times re-elected. His home was in Bethel
township (now Lebanon), then Dauphin
county, but prior to the birth of his son John.
he moved to Mechanicsburg, Cumberland
county. Martin Meily married, in 1823,
Magdalene Groh, born in 1798, daughter of
John Groh, of Bethel township. Children:
Benjamin; John (2), and Jacob.

John Meily, son of Martin and Magda-
lene (Groh) Meily, was born at Mechanics-
burg, Cumberland county, Pennsylvania,
and died April 3, 1902. He was
educated in the public schools and began
business life as clerk in a Mechanics-
burg store. Later he returned to the old
home in Lebanon county, where he estab-
lished a transportation business, both
freight and passenger on the old Union
Canal, with offices at Jonestown and Mid-
dletown, Pennsylvania. Later he was con-
nected with a mercantile house in Philadel-
phia and resided in that city. About i860

he engaged in the iron business, with which
he was famiHar, in partnership with his
cousin, Henry Meily, at Middletown. In
1867, in association with Richard Meily
and Lyman Nutting (now deceased), he
built the Lebanon Valley Furnace, which in
partnership with Richard Meily, he con-
tinued to operate until his death. This
became one of the leading industries of Le-
banon and its success was largely due to
his thorough knowledge of every detail
of the business, his wise executive ability,
tact and high sense of honor, which guar-
anteed absolutely fair treatment to cus-
tomers and employee alike. In addition to
his iron interests he was president of the
Lebanon County Insurance Company. He
became well known throughout the State as
an iron manufacturer and a public spirited
influential citizen. In early life a Whig,
he transferred his allegiance to the Re-
publican party and was closely identified
with its interests in Lebanon county,
although never desiring office for himself.

Notwithstanding his preference for pri-
vate life, he was once induced, while living
at Jonestown, to accept a nomination on the
Whig ticket for the State Legislature.
Although elected by a large majority, he
ever afterward declined all offers of public
office. He used his personal popularity
solely for the advancement of his political
friends, and through them serving the coun>-
ty's best interests. For many years he was
a member of St. John's Reformed Church,
of Lebanon, a consistent Christian, and
prominently identified with that congrega-
tion until his death. Few men enjoyed in
higher degree, than John Meily, the respect
and esteem of their f ellowmen and his death
was most sincerely mourned.

He married (first) Helrn Halter of
Washington, D. C, who was connected with
leading Lebanon families. She died Feb-
ruary 25, 1873. He married (second)
Katherine De Huff, member of the old Le-
banon family of that name, so well known
in this portion of the state. Children of



John and Helen (Halter) Meily: James,
of Philadelphia, deceased; John, of Le-
banon; Mary, of Lebanon; Helen, wife of
Edward M. Taylor, of Wilmington, Dela-

WALLACE, John Clarke.

Manufacturer, Financier.

To her citizens of Irish birth, Pittsburgh
owes an incalculable debt of gratitude, in-
asmuch as her world-fame as the industrial
centre of civilization is largely the result
of the versatile genius and indefatigable in-
dustry of these representatives of an ag-
gressive and indomitable race. In the front
rank of those Irish-born citizens who, dur-
ing the closing decades of the nineteenth
century, helped to make Pittsburgh great,
was the late John C. Wallace, for many
years president of the Wallace & Banfield
Company, and for a quarter of a century
known as one of the iron and steel magnates
of his adopted city. It was, however, not
alone with the manufacturing interests of
Pittsburgh that Mr. Wallace was identified.
In all the essential elements of the life of his
community he exerted a strong and benefi-
cent influence.

John Clarke Wallace was born July 21,
1844, 'ri Londonderry, Ireland, and was a
son of John and Jane (Wallace) Wallace.
The boy was educated in his native country,
and at the age of seventeen emigrated to
the United States. His brother Thomas,
now of New Alexandria, Pennsylvania, and
a sister who became the wife of John C.
Kirkpatrick, of Pittsburgh, also came to
seek their fortunes in the New World,
another brother and sister, Moses and
Sarah, remaining in Ireland.

For two years after his arrival in this
country Mr. Wallace was engaged in the
dry goods business, and in 1865 he opened
a large shoe store at Liberty avenue and
Market street. The remarkable success of
the venture demonstrated both his innate
ability and the extent to which he had prof-

ited by his brief experience. In 1878, in
association with the late John C. Kirk-
patrick, he engaged in the iron business,
and the partners established a mill at Leech-
burg where they manufactured steel and
iron by a process of their own. In 1882
Mr. Wallace, as president of the Wallace
& Banfield Company, erected a tin plant at
Irondale, Ohio, in which he retained his in-
terest until it was absorbed in 1900 by the
United States Steel Corporation. He
showed marked ability in the execution of
every detail of the important business with
which he was connected, being not only a
strong and capable officer, true to every
trust, but a man who by his splendid per-
sonal qualities endeared himself to his
brother officers and to all who came into
close relations with him. His conduct to-
ward his employes was marked by the ut-
most justice and kindliness and in return
he received from them such loyal service
and enthusiastic attachment as are rarely
accorded by subordinates to a man in his

In all concerns relative to the city's wel-
fare Mr. Wallace's interest was deep and
sincere, and wherever substantial aid would
further public progress it was freely given.
Politically he was a Republican, and as a
vigilant and attentive observer of men and
measures, holding sound opinions and tak-
ing liberal views, his ideas carried weight
among those with whom he discussed pub-
lic problems. He was interested in many
charitable and benevolent enterprises and
was liberal in his gifts along the lines of
religious and philanthropic effort. Posses-
sing a remarkable faculty of discerning the
dormant possibilities of real estate, he was
the owner of much landed property and
built the Wallace Block in Wilkinsburg.
For nine years he was a director in the
National Bank of Western Pennsylvania.
He was a member of the Third Presby-
terian Church, with the work of which he
was prominently identified. Among the
leading characteristics of Mr. Wallace were



indomitable perseverance, boldness of
operation, unusual capacity for judging the
motives and merits of men, unimpeacliable
integrity and unfailing loyalty to friends.
These traits were stamped upon his resolute
countenance and revealed in the searching
glance of his clear eye. Genial and court-
eous on all occasions, he possessed a most
attractive personality, and this, in combina-
tion with his sterling qualities of manhood,
gained for him public confidence and esteem
and the warm affection of a host of friends.

Mr. Wallace married, in Leechburg,
Pennsylvania, April i6, 1878, Anna M.,
daughter of William W. and Hannah
(Everson) Foale, and they became the
parents of two children: Lillian Wallace,
who is of charming personality and ex-
tremely popular in Pittsburgh society, and
John Foale, who died February 8,
1904. Mrs. Wallace, a woman of rare
wifely qualities and admirably fitted by her
excellent practical mind to be a helpmate
to her husband in his aspirations and am-
bitions, is prominent in the social and
charitable circles of the city, continuing in
her widowhood the benevolent labors in
which she and- her husband were so long
united. Mr. Wallace was a man of strong
domestic affections and the happiest hours
of his busy life were those passed at his
own fireside. The city residence of the
family was a centre of hospitality as was
their beautiful summer home at Somerset,

The death of Mr. Wallace, which oc-
curred December 23, 1906, deprived Pitts-
burgh of one of her foremost citizens and
most respected, able and high-minded busi-
ness men, one whose every action was
governed by the loftiest principles, who
fulfilled to the letter every trust committed
to him and was generous in his feelings and
conduct toward all. John Clarke Wallace
was a leader in the development of a colos-
sal industry, a citizen earnest, upright and
progressive, and a man irreproachable in
every relation of life. Could there be a
higher eulogy?

MILLER, Robert H.,


While the general trend of migration in
all ages of the world has been constantly
westward, and the whole history of the
United States, whether general or local or
biographical, shows that this tendency has
strongly operated in this country and pro-
foundly affected the course of its affairs,
exceptions are noted from time to time in
the persons of individuals who have come
from the more vigorous west to the older
and more settled communities of the east,
finding their best opportunity in a reversal
of the general drift. Among these is Dr.
Robert Horace Miller, the osteopathist, of
Washington, Pennsylvania, who is a native
of College Springs, Iowa. He was brought
up in the west, received his whole technical
education in the west, entered first into busi-
ness in the west, and his parents are both
still living in Iowa ; yet his professional
career has been wholly spient in the State to
which his parents belong by birth, and to
which be has in a later generation returned.

John H. and Elizabeth Taylor (Elgin)
Miller were both born in Indiana county,
Pennsylvania, but had never met until they
were settled in the trans-Mississippi region.
Before removing to Iowa, John H. Miller
had served in the Civil War. He enlisted
three times, and his total service amounted
to more than three years, in the 135th,
206th and 200th Pennsylvania Volunteer
Regiments. Entering as a private, he was
mustered out as a second lieutenant. In
1866 he removed to Iowa and settled near
College Springs. About the same time the
Elgin family removed and lived in the same
neighborhood. Here Mr. and Mrs. Miller
met and were married, and in Iowa their
son was born, April 23, 1869. His father
is still a farmer in Iowa.

Robert Horace Miller was brought up
on the Iowa farm, assisting in the general
work, and attended public school in the
neighboring village of College Springs.
Amity College is also at College Springs,



and here he studied after finishing his
preparatory work. For three years he then
taught school, after which time he was en-
gaged in newspaper work at College Springs
and at Clearfield, Iowa, for two years. In
1898 he entered the American School of
Osteopathy at Kirksville, Missouri. On
his graduation with the degree of Doctor
of Osteopathy in 1900, he came directly to
Washington county, Pennsylvania, for
practice, and here he has remained and prac-
ticed successfully. The office which he then
opened in the Brown Building he occupies to
the present time. He is a member of the
Western Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania
State, and the National Societies of Osteo-

Online LibraryJohn W. (John Woolf) JordanEncyclopedia of Pennsylvania biography : illustrated (Volume 3) → online text (page 20 of 58)