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The men of New York: a collection of biographies and portraits of citizens of the Empire State prominent in business, professional, social, and political life during the last decade of the nineteenth century (Volume 1) online

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manners. In public affairs Mr. Orcutt has been less
conspicuous in Buffalo than he was in Massachusetts,
and has confined himself closely to his
law practice, doubtless from an inherent
modesty and dislike to obtrude himself in
the affairs of a somewhat strange city ;
but Buffalo has need for the very services
which he is most competent to render,
and which in Cambridge he did render.

While a resident of Cambridge, Mr.
Orcutt gave twelve years of efficient and
unrewarded service to the public schools
of that city. The cause of education has
been his special study outside the law,
and he has devoted time, in a manner
worthy of the highest praise, to the
betterment of the system. It is such
service that really tests a man's loyalty
to American institutions. His practical
sense has been displayed in providing
manual training schools, and in shortening
the time and simplifying the courses of
study in preparatory schools so as to give
to pupils who can spend but a few
years in school the greatest variety of
training compatible with sound principles
of instruction. Mr. Orcutt has written
frequently on educational topics, and is
master of a logical, forceful style. He
is a member of the Buffalo and Ellicott
clubs, and is an attendant at the Delaware
Avenue Baptist Church.

PERSONAL CHRONOLOGY -
\\~illiam Hunter Orcutt was horn- at
Boston, Mass., November /.'>, IS.'f'i ;
was educated in tlif pn/>li( schools of
Boston and Cambridge, and graduated from Harvard
College in 18119 ; studied law at Harvard Law School,
and was admitted to the bar of Massachusetts in 1875 ;
practiced law in Boston, 1N75-S^ : was appoint,-,!
iudge of the District Court in Middlesex county in
1S82 ; married Leafie Sloan of Buffalo June 4 , AV.S7/ .
has practiced law in Buffalo since 1889.



completing a public-school training at Lowell, in a
state famous for its educational system, he pursued a
course in mining and engineering at the Massachusetts
Institute of Technology, which has sent out many of
the scientific leaders of the day. He graduated thence
in IKT'J with the degree of Bachelor of Sciences.




tCC .16. iPatCb has made applied science
the study of a lifetime, and has become a recognized
authority on the subject of metallurgy. He is a son
of the Pine Tree State, and has enjoyed the double
advantage of a broad education in the Kast and
a large practical experience in the West. After



WILLIAM H. ORCUTT

Mr. Patch chose as a field for his talents and
attainments the remote western regions containing
the mines for whose exploitation he had equipped
himself. Accordingly, the very year of his gradua-
tion found him settled at Georgetown, Col., carrying
on his profession as a mining engineer. For two
years he remained there, surveying mining properties
and working in the various departments of his call-
ing. He then accepted an offer from the Detroit &
Lake Superior Copper Smelting Co., and became the
chemist of the company at Houghton, Mich. While
in this position Mr. Patch was able to follow a line
of original research which had always been attractive
to him, and which he has pursued untiringly, until



172



MEX OF NEW YORKWESTERX SECTIOX



he is now among the foremost copper metallurgists
in the country. During these same years he was
also establishing a wide reputation as a mine sur-
veyor, chemist, and practical operator in mining and
smelting, and in all the branches of his profession.
Consequently, when the well-known Calumet &




M.-tl'K/Cl-: It. PATCH

Hecla Mining Co. was preparing to install a smelting
pl;mt at Lake Linden, Mich., they sought Mr. Patch
as designer and superintendent of the work. He
.!( i i-pted the position, moved to Lake Linden, and
remained there for five years, completing this con-
tract and carrying on work in his special line. At
the end of this time he received a flattering offer
from the same company to undertake similar work
for them at Buffalo. He went to that city in Janu-
ary, 1.H91, and became superintendent of the com-
pany's works there ; and he still holds this position.
In connection with his special branch of science,
Mr. Patch has done much original work, and has
made many discoveries of great practical utility ;



but his work has been solely in the interest of the
corporations by which he has been employed, and
which naturally desire to keep secret the process^
that they have perfected. For this reason Mr. Patch
has never been able to write anything for publication,
and the general public has not profited, except
indirectly, by his research.

Mr. Patch has been a prime mover in
several successful financial undertakings.
While residing in Michigan he helped to
organize two banks, the First National at
Lake Linden and the Superior Savings
Bank at Hancock, and was a director in
both until he left the state. He is now a
director of the Niagara Bank of Buffalo,
and is interested in several mining com-
panies. He is a member of the American
Institute of Mining Engineers, and of the
Engineers' Society of Western New York.
He is a member and vestryman of St.
John's Episcopal Church, Buffalo.

PERSONAL CHRONOLOGY -
Maurice Byron Patch was born at Otis-
field, Me., June 8, 1852; was educated
in the public schools of Lowell, J/i/.o.,
and graduated from the Massachusetts Iti-
^t: title of Technolog\ in LSI ,' ; jc/iis em-
ployed as a mining engineer in Colomdti,
187274 ' married Emily Isabella }]'hite
of Lowell July 0, 1875 ; was chemist of the
Detroit &-" Lake Superior Copper Smelting'
Co., 1S74-SV, a d superintendent of the
Calumet 6^ Hecla Mining Co. ' s works at

Lake Linden, Mich. , 1886-90 ; has been

superintendent of tlic Buffalo Smelting

I Vorks of the same company since 1891.

ft

3rOfcm TKDL IRObinSOIl, president of
the Robinson Bros. Lumber Co. of North
Tonawanda, N. Y., is one of the solid,
conservative business men whose life shows the
rewards that may be obtained from prudence, close
attention to business, and strict integrity. The
Tonawandas constitute one of the chief centers of
the lumber trade in the United States. The fact
is due to the efforts of such men as Mr. Robinson,
who have had the foresight and courage to invest
their capital in the development of this important
business at the foot of the lakes.

Mr. Robinson has been the architect of his own
fortunes. At the age of fourteen he was left to care
for himself. His education was therefore necessarily
limited to such as could be obtained at the common
schools, supplemented by attendance at night schools



.l/A'.V OF NEW YORKl\'ESTEKi\ SECTION



173



and by careful reading. He first went to Buffalo
when about seventeen years old, remaining there and
thereabouts for a few years. His father had been
engaged in the lumber business, and it was natural
for the son to concern himself with the same industry.
Then he went to Detroit, and obtained employment
with one of the large lumber manufacturers there.
By his fidelity, intelligence, and determination to
master the business, he soon obtained the best posi-
tion at the disposal of his employers.

But he was not satisfied to remain working for
others. Having acquired a thorough knowledge of
the calling and a moderate capital, he became inter-
ested with his brothers in the wholesale lumber busi-
ness in Detroit. The concern began operations in
a small way, but was at once successful and grew
steadily. Having concluded that their business could
be carried on more advantageously at
North Tonawanda, the company moved
thither in the latter part of 1888. One
of Mr. Robinson's brothers retired from
the firm before the removal of the busi-
ness from Detroit. The other died June
:50, 1889. Mr. Robinson soon after-
ward purchased the interest held by his
brother, and for the last few years has
been practically the sole owner of the
business. In 1891 he brought his family
to Buffalo, and has maintained his resi-
dence there since. He is now known as
an upright citizen, and a firm and enthu-
siastic believer in a greater Buffalo.

As soon as he went to Tonawanda Mr
Robinson began to take a prominent part
in promoting the welfare of the place,
and especially of the trade in which he
was engaged. He has frequently been
called upon to visit both the national
and state capitals in the interest of the
Twin Cities. He has been twice elected
president of the Tonawanda Lumber-
man's Association, serving in that capac-
ity during the great strikes of 18J)^ and
189.'], and conducting the affairs of the
association with the sagacity and firmness
which finally resulted in an amicable
adjustment of all disputed matters. He
has served as vice president of the Lum-
ber Exchange Bank, North Tonawanda,
for several years, and has also been twice
elected president of the National Association of
Wholesale Lumber Dealers.

In private life Mr. Robinson is of quiet, unassum-
ing manners, and is approachable by both old and



young. He is fond of outdoor sports, and is an
expert angler. He is an official member of the
Delaware Avenue Methodist Church, and takes great
interest in charitable and religious work. He was
one of the founders and supporters of the Buffalo
Ophthalmic Hospital. He is a member of the Buf-
falo, Acacia, and Liberal clubs, and the Buffalo
Historical Society. He is also a Knight Templar,
a .'i'2d degree Mason, and a Noble of the Mystic-
Shrine. In politics he is a Republican, and takes
pride in attending the primaries, believing that this
duty is as important as voting, and should be dis-
charged by every good citizen. He has never
aspired to political office.

PERSO NA L CHR ONOLOG Y John
\\'illonghl>\ Rol'insoii ?c>a.< born in Simtoe county. On-
fan', i, October 14, /.V.$,V , married Matilda Oxenham




JOHN 1C AVV.YAW.V

Mav ,.',', /.v;, ; , wax connected with the lumber bus:
ness in J)etroit, 1873-88 ; established a lumber busi-
ness at North Tonawanda, N . ) '. , /// /.V.S'.S', and ha\
lived in Buffalo sine?.



174



J/AVT OF NEW YORK'H'ESTER.V SECTION



Jf. TTabOt is a Btiffalonian whose
reputation is at least slate-wide. That he is thus
generally and favorably known is due to the fact
that he was the head of the state legal department
for four years, and as attorney general had the dis-
posal of a large number of complicated c]iiestions,









CHARLES F. TABOR

and the preparation and presentation in court of
several cases of the greatest importance.

Mr. Tabor is a native of the Wolverene State, but
he was brought to Erie county, New York, when
about two years of age. He received what was then
deemed a good education, attending various acade-
mies in western New York that had more than a
local reputation. Finishing his school course in
1 S(50, he began at once the study of law ; and in
November, l.S(i.'!, he was admitted to the bar. \Vhile
studying law Mr. Tabor also taught school for three
winters. In 1868 he formed a copartnership with
Thomas Corlett, afterward a justice of the Supreme
Court. This connection continued for six years.
Then Mr. Tabor practiced alone until 1X,S:>, when



he formed a partnership with William F. Sheehan.
The firm was afterward enlarged by the admission
of K. E. Coatsworth and John Cunneen, and became
one of the best-known firms in western New York.
Since Mr. Sheehan moved to New York, in the fall
of l!S!)4, Mr. Tabor has been associated with L. C.
Wilkie.

Like so many lawyers, Mr. Tabor has
been for many years intimately connected
with politics. He is a Democrat and a
strong party man. He has held many
public offices, the first of which was
that of commissioner of excise for Erie
county. He was also a member of the
board of supervisors of Erie county,
representing the town of Lancaster. He
spent two years in the legislature, sent
thither by a majority of the voters of the
4th district of Erie county. This was in
1876 and 1877. In 1885 he was ap-
pointed deputy attorney general of the
state of New York, and served as such
for two years. His work here brought
him prominently into view, and gave him
the Democratic nomination for the posi-
tion of attorney general. He was tri-
umphantly elected in 1<H<S7 and re-elected
in 18<S!(. After the expiration of his four
years of service at the head of this impor-
tant department, he returned to Buffalo
and resumed his large private practice.

While acting as attorney general Mr.
Tabor was called upon to handle a num-
ber of notable cases. One of these
involved the constitutionality of the so-
called electrocution law, which substi-
tuted death by electricity for hanging
as the capital punishment of the state.
This law was fought with great vigor.
The large electrical companies united in opposing it,
and it was charged that, impelled by commercial
reasons, they supplied the means for fighting the
law. They were backed, moreover, by a strong
public sentiment, many people believing that elec-
tricity was not sufficiently well understood to be
used in taking human life. The case was not settled
until the Supreme Court of the United States passed
upon it. Mr. Tabor came off triumphant. Another
important victory was won by Mr. Tabor in the case
that established the state's right to tax corporations
i'or doing business in this state, although their capital
might be invested in government bonds.

Mr. Tabor also succeeded, while attorney general,
in obtaining the decision of the Court of Appeals



.\'Eir



175



of this state, that the great sugar trust, formed by
the union of different corporations for the purpose
of controlling the product and price of refined sugar,
was in violation of corporate law, and in securing
judgments vacating the charters of the different
corporations that had entered the syndicate.

PERSONAL CHRONOLOGY Charles F.
Tabor ivas born at Mliitc Pigeon, St. Joseph county,
Midi., June 28, 1841; if 'its admitted to the bar in
1863 ; married Phebe S. Andrews of Pembroke,
N. Y., December .'.'/, lsn.1 ?, w\' member of assem-
bly, 1876-77, deputy attonie\ general, 1886-87, and
attorney general, 1S88-01 : lias practiced law in Buf-
falo since



was a Yorkshire
came to America to seek his fortune,
and who, for the past thirty years, has
made his home in Buffalo.

His education was obtained in the
common schools of his native place, and
ended with his fourteenth year. He
possessed an energetic, ambitious spirit,
and after a few years' work in England
he determined to seek the wider oppor-
tunities that a newer country afforded.
Accordingly, at the age of nineteen, he
came to the United States. He settled
in St. Lawrence county, New York, and
followed the occupation of a farmer there
for the next ten years. But his instincts
were those of the trader and manu-
facturer, and in the spring of l.S(>") he
disposed of his farm, and became foreman
for J. H. Crawford & Co., a firm of
canal forwarders at Oswego, N. Y.

This proved to be the turning point in
his career the first step which led him
ultimately to Buffalo, and to the exten-
sive and prosperous business that he now
carries on. He had been with Crawford
& Co. only a year when they moved
their headquarters to Buffalo, taking him
with them. Two years later the firm
discontinued business, and Mr. Tindle
obtained employment with Toles &
Sweet, canal forwarders and dealers in
cooperage stock. There he remained
for the next twelve years, becoming
purchasing agent and salesman, and
learning many details of the cooperage



lad who



extended his operations, and began the manufacture
of cooperage stock at mills in Canada. After five
years he sold his interest in these mills, and for the
next few years devoted his entire attention to his
jobbing business. In 1HS8 his son-in-law, Willis K.
Jackson, was taken into partnership, under the firm
name of Thomas Tindle & Co. Under Mr. Tindle's
shrewd and careful management the business grew
rapidly, and it soon became necessary to undertake
once more the manufacture of the stock in which
the firm dealt. Five mills, therefore, all located
within easy reach of the Michigan forests, were suc-
cessively built or otherwise acquired. They turn
out a vast amount of cooperage stock, all of which
is handled by the firm at its Buffalo headquarters.
In addition, a large amount of stock is bought from




THOMAS TIXDLE



business.



In this industry Mr. Tindle discerned a favorable
opening, and in January, I.X.sii, he began business
for himself as a jobber. A few months later he



other manufacturers, including the entire output
of several stave mills in Canada. The firm of
Tindle & Co. sells its products all over the country,
from Maine to California, though New York,



L76



MEX OF X'Eir YORK\\'ESTEk\ SECTIOX



Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Minnesota consti-
tute its principal markets.

Such a business affords ample scope for the talents
and energies of any man, and Mr. Tindle has wisely
confined his attention to it lor the most part. He is,
however, a director of the Niagara Bank, a member




ANSLEY \\lLinx

:iml trustee of Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church,
and a member of the Ancient Order of United
Workmen.

1'KRSOXAL CHRONOLOGY - Thomas
t'inlli' ii'as horn at Broomfleet, Yorkshire, England,
April 7, IS.lt! : ?,'t7\ educated in common schools in
I', upland ; came to the United State^ in IX'i'i, and en-
gaged in farming in St. Lawrence county, X. Y. . was
agent fur canal forwarders in Hiiflalo, ISHli-Sn : mar-
ried Harriet Hraithwaite of Ogdensburg, X'. Y. , April
5, ix.'ii; : lias carried on a jobbing and manufacturing
business in cooperage .stock at Buffalo since /.s'.s'o.



HllSlCVJ I'ClUCOl' is still a young man, having
barely passed two score years ; but a strong personal



force, displayed in all his dealings with his fellow-
men, has given him a place in the esteem of the
community that few men attain at his age. Endowed
ltl> an acute sense of right and wrong in public-
affairs, and with a sturdy determination to do a lion's
share toward the correction of the political and
six ial abuses of the times, Mr. Wilcox
has closely identified himself with all the
reform movements of recent years, and
has been a tower of strength to the cause
of good government. He is a type of
the best citizenship to be found in Ameri-
can life.

Born near Augusta, Ga., just before
the breaking out of the Civil War, young
\\ ilcox spent his boyhood amid some of
the most stirring scenes of that great and
fierce struggle. In the last year of the
war his family left the South, and finally
settled in Connecticut, which was hi;,
father's native state. The second ten
years of his life were passed at New
Haven, first in attending a preparatory
school, and afterward as a student at Yale-
College. Then came a year of rest and
travel, succeeded by a year of post-
graduate study at University College,
Oxford, England.

Having moved to Buffalo in IISTO, and
been admitted to the bar two years later,
Mr. Wilcox began a brilliant career, and
soon attained a foremost rank among the
lawyers of western New York. For ten
years the firm of Allen, Movius : Wilcox
was one of the strongest at the Buffalo
bar. Mr. Wilcox, while a forcible and
brilliant speaker, has devoted most of his
time and attention professionally to office
law rather than to the trial of cases in the
courts. He enjoys a large and lucrative practice.

Mr. Wilcox has never had any aspirations in the
direction of office holding, and many phases of
political life are particularly distasteful to him. In-
dependence has been his watchword from the start,
and the independent movement in national politics
beginning in 1*S4, appealed most strongly to him,
and had his heartiest sympathy and support. He
was a leader of the movement in his part of the state.
Outside of politics, also, Mr. Wilcox has labored
energetically for the cause of reform. The Buffalo
Charity Organization Society an association which
has been the forerunner of many similar societies in
the country, and which is founded on the principle
that the best way to aid the poor is to help them to



MEX OF XEll' YORK-U'ESTERX SECTION



help themselves counted him among its first and
most active members. The unqualified success of
this practical charity owes not a little to his energy
and devotion to its interests.

In the social life of Buffalo Mr. Wilcox has been
conspicuous. He is a prominent member of the
Buffalo Club, and was its president in 1X93 ; and he-
has taken a more or less active part in many societies,
both social and charitable, of his city. For ten
years he has regularly delivered a course of lectures
at the University of Buffalo, where he has the pro-
fessorship of medical jurisprudence. While in college
and in the early years after graduation, Mr. Wilcox
wrote several maga/ine articles ; but in recent times
he has found little leisure for purely literary work.

PERSONAL CHRONOLOGY Ansley U 'iff ox
was born at Summerville, Ga. , fanuarv
27, ISfiO ; prepared for college at Hopkins
Grammar School, New Haven, Conn. , and
graduated from Yale College in 1874 '
studied at University College, O\f<>rd, Rug-
land, 187570 ; was admitted lo tlie l>arin
1878 : married Cornelia C. Ritmsev <>/
Buffalo fannarv 17, 1878, and her sister,
:M<ir\ Grace Rumsev, November ,'u,
188-i : n<as /// /he /inn of OVW/<T, Moviin
& U'ilcox, 1882-83, in that of Allen,
Movins & ll'i/cox, 1883-9-J, and in that
/ Movins & ll'ilcox, 18l> .'-.'A; ,- has been
associated with \\~orthington C. A[iner since
early in 1891,..



isaself-made

man, whose life illustrates the power of
will and honest effort lo cope successfully
with adverse circumstances. In speaking
of him it is difficult to state the facts of
his life without seeming to intrude upon
his privacy, for he belongs to the class of
men who prefer that their work shall be
the criterion of their worth. Mr. Apple-
yard was born in Yorkshire, England,
within sight of the home of the famous
Bronte family of novelists. He attended
the parish school a short time ; but at
the early age of eight years was put to
work in a factory for half a day, and
at thirteen was taken from school alto-
gether and employed in a mill. The
boy had, however, learned enough at school to
want to know more, and with the aid of night
schools and by home study he filled out a given
course, took a government examination, and re-
ceived a certificate.



About this time he was apprenticed to Messrs.
Ilutterfield Brothers of Bradford, England, to learn
the business of a worsted spinner. When twenty-
five years old he embarked in business for himself,
associating his brother with him a few years later.
In the fall of 1872 arrangements were made with
William Broadhead for the manufacture of alpaca
goods in the United States. The next year, from
] plans drawn by Mr. Appleyard, the great plant of
the Jamestown Worsted Mills was established, and
put in operation under his management. In lX7(i,
having severed his relations with this company, he
returned to England, and procured for William
Broadhead &: Sons an equipment for alpaca manu-
facture. The plant thus established has grown to
mammoth proportions, and to-day constitutes one




j-nn'.iRn APPLEYARD

of the most valued and important industries of lames-
town. Mr. Appleyard is superintendent of the works.
Not only in mercantile life, but also in social, lit-
erary, and religious circles, has Mr. Appleyard been
a<live. He was the first president of the Sons of



ITS



.i//-:.v ()/ .\7-:ir YORK WESTERN SECT/ON



St. George, and is a contributor to the journal of
that body. He is the author of the " History of
the Methodist Church in Jamestown," and of numer-
ous poems, among which "An Ode to Sympathy"
is highly regarded by critics. He is a member of
the Methodist Episcopal church, a local pn.-achc.-r.



///./ AY. /f.V //. CORBETT

and a Sunday-school superintendent. He was elected
a delegate to the General Conference held in New York
in 1888. His continued interest in education is evi-
denced by his position as trustee of Allegheny College.

In politics Mr. Appleyard is an ardent Republi-
can. While never a seeker for office, he has served
for three years as president of the board of health of
Jamestown, regarding his incumbency of that posi-
tion as a duty to the public. In all the varied rela-
tions of his full and active life he has the confidence
and respect of business men and neighbors, and can
be truly classed among the strong, conservative



Online LibraryMoses KingThe men of New York: a collection of biographies and portraits of citizens of the Empire State prominent in business, professional, social, and political life during the last decade of the nineteenth century (Volume 1) → online text (page 26 of 69)