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TER WILDER.



MEMORIAL



OF



A. CARTER WILDER.



With the Coinplime:






Denver, Col.. December. 1878.



ROCHESTER



MEMORIAL



OF



A. CARTER WILDER.




A. CARTER WILDER.



[Rochester Evening Express, Dec. 2j, 187J.]

The sad news, not altogether unanticipated, of the death
of our gifted and honored townsman, Hon. A. Carter Wilder,
was received this morning by his brother, Samuel Wilder, in a
dispatch from San Francisco. His death took place last evening,
December 22, 1875.

His many friends have noticed with great sorrow the
gradual decline of his health during the past few years — the fact
that his disease was making sure progress to a fatal result being
too evident to all who observed his condition. A trip to Europe
two years ago did little to check the malady, and a resort to our
Southern climate, last year, was as ineffectual. The journey to
California was undertaken in November last, with a view to test
the healing effects of a more genial and equable temperature, but
this has not stayed the inevitable result.

Mr. Wilder resided in Rochester some twenty-five years
ago, and was engaged with his brothers in mercantile business.
When attention began to be drawn to the desirable character of
the Indian Territory, now embraced in the State of Kansas, he
was among the first to visit and settle in that Territory, engaging
with all his native zeal and enthusiasm in the efforts to forestall
the inroad of slaveholders, who hoped to blight that virgin soil by
planting slavery thereon. A man of fine presence, with the
noble gift of eloquence and readiness of speech, he was one of



4 MEMORIAL.

the most prominent of the protectors of that soil from the curse
with which it was threatened. He remained on the ground until
the conflict between the friends of freedom and the " Border
Ruffians," advocates of slavery, was waged to a successful issue in
behalf of free institutions. His services in that behalf were recog-
nized by the noble men, who risked property and lives in that strug-
gle for a great principle, and he was elected to represent Kansas in
Congress. He was a member of that body during the most inter-
esting period of its history, and was ranked among the able and
influential members. He returned to. Leavenworth, where he had
valuable interests, and continued there until 1865, when he
returned to Rochester, purchased the " Tallman Block" property,
(now the Evening Express Building,) and soon after engaged with
his brother, D. W. Wilder, and others, in the publication of the
Morning and Evening Express. This he continued until 1868,
when his brother returned to Kansas, and he sold his interest to
his partners, and retired altogether from active pursuits. In 1872
he was elected Mayor of Rochester for a two years' term. His
health becoming more precarious, he resigned in 1873 and made a
trip to Europe, remaining abroad nearly a year. This is a brief
history of his career. We cannot do full justice to it, or his
personal merits, in a brief article. Had he been favored with a
physical constitution equal to his mental endowments, he would
have occupied a large place in public life. He used all of his
native capital and kept nothing in reserve. He was accompanied
to California by his wife, Mrs. Frank Little and Miss Fanny
Wilder. The remains will be brought here for interment.

The following brief record of Mr. Wilder' s personal history
was taken from the Dictionary of Congress :

Wilder, A. Carter. — He was born in Mendon, Worcester
County, Mass., March 18, 1828; in 1850 removed to Rochester,



MEMORIAL. 5

N. Y., and in 1857 to Kansas, where he was engaged in mercan-
tile pursuits ; was a delegate to the Chicago National Convention
in i860, and in 1862 he was elected a Representative from Kansas
to the Thirty-eighth Congress, serving on the Committee on
Indian Affairs. He was a delegate to the Baltimore Republican
Convention of 1864, and to the National Republican Conventions
of 1868 and 1872.



yFrom the Rochester Union and Advertiser, Dec 23, iSyj.~\
THE DEATH OF EX-MAYOR A. CARTER WILDER.

It will be with irrepressible sadness, though not with great
surprise, that the many friends of Hon. A. Carter Wilder will
learn that the menace of a fatal termination to his long illness has
been fulfilled. He died in San Francisco at 9 o'clock last
evening.

Mr. Wilder had been afflicted for some two years with
what New York physicians had pronounced catarrhal consump-
tion. He has twice been in Europe, the last time with the hope of
benefiting his health, and last winter he resided in Florida. It
was designed to spend the present inclement season in the genial
climate of California, and for that purpose he left New York for
San Francisco on the 5th of November. After stopping at
various points he arrived at the latter city on the 6th of this
month, and has since continued to decline. He was accompanied
by his wife, by Mrs. Frank Little, and by a young niece of his.

Mr. Wilder was forty-seven years of age. Samuel Wilder
of this city and D. W. Wilder of Leavenworth, Kansas, are
brothers. He was born in Mendon, Worcester County, Mass.,
and first settled in Rochester in 1850. In 1857 he removed to



6 MEMORIAL.

Kansas, where he engaged in mercantile pursuits and interested
himself in political affairs. He was a delegate to the Chicago
Republican Convention in i860, where Lincoln was first nom-
inated for the Presidency. In 1863-4 he represented the entire
State of Kansas in Congress, the State at that time being entitled
to but one member. He was elected over Marcus J. Parrott.
At one time he occupied the position of paymaster or quarter-
master in the army,* and subsequently came to Rochester to reside,
where he has since made it his home. In 1872 he was elected
Mayor of the city for a term of two years, but resigned before the
expiration of the term to go to Europe.

Mr. Wilder was a man of free hearted, generous impulses,
genial disposition and liberal culture. He never made an enemy
where it was possible to keep a friend. His fund of general
information, treasured up in a retentive memory, made him a
very interesting conversationalist. His death will be deeply
regretted in the community.



[Rochester De?nocrat and Chronicle, Dec. 23, j8?j>.~\
THE DEATH OF HON. A. CARTER WILDER

Took place in San Francisco on the evening of the 22d inst.
The sad intelligence was not unexpected, as Mr. Wilder's health
has been failing for some time. Consumption had attacked him,
and though he had been able, by careful attention to the laws of
health and the advice of the most skilled in medicine, to ward off



* He was appointed Brigade Commissary by President Lincoln, August 7, 1S61 — one of
the first military appointments made by Mr. Lincoln in Kansas. His headquarters were at
Fort Scott. The leading hotel in that city was named for him and is still called the Wilder
House. The town, Wilder, in Johnson county, Kan., was named for his brother.



MEMORIAL. 7

death for a long time, he has, at last, been called home. In the
hope of regaining his health he visited Europe in 1873, anfi
passed the winter of 1874-5 in Florida. It was the same mission
that called him to California. He started from New York on the
5th of November, and was accompanied by his wife, Mrs. Francis
Little and his niece, Miss Fanny Wilder. After stopping to visit
friends along the route, he arrived in San Francisco on the 6th
inst. His health steadily failed, notwithstanding the assiduous
attention of his friends and the best medical skill, and he died as
above stated.

Mr. Wilder was born in Mendon, Worcester County,
Mass., March 18, 1828. In 1850 he removed to this city. After
seven years of active business life here he removed to Kansas.
There he took a prominent position, not only in business affairs
but in political life, and became well known in connection with
Western politics ; was elected a delegate to the Chicago Conven-
tion of i860, by which Lincoln was nominated for the Presidency,
and was sent in 1862 as a Representative to the Thirty-eighth
Congress. In 1864 he attended the Baltimore Convention as a
delegate. He was at one time a paymaster in the army. In 1865
he left Leavenworth and returned to this city, where he became
engaged as a publisher of The Evening Express. In 1872 he was
elected Mayor of the city of Rochester, but resigned before the
end of his official term on account of failing health. Since then
his health has been precarious, and he traveled extensively in the
hope of improving it.

Mr. Wilder was a man of much ability, a free hearted,
kind and cultured gentleman, whose foes were few and whose
friends were many. His death will be deeply felt among the
large circle of friends and acquaintances in this city. Samuel
Wilder of this city and George and D. W. Wilder are his brothers.



MEMORIAL.



{From the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, March j, 1876.]
MEETING OF THE EX-MAYORS OF ROCHESTER.

The remains of the honored ex-Mayor, A. Carter Wilder,
were committed to their last resting place yesterday afternoon, a
large number of his former associates, city officials and the
ex-Mayors of the city being present.

The remains, which were deposited in the vault at Mount
Hope some time since, were taken thence and placed in the
family vault.

Previous to attending the services the ex-Mayors of the
city met in the Mayor's office and adopted the following official
record :

" The announcement of the burial of another of our
associates has convened us. The youngest member and latest
accession to our number, A. Carter Wilder, died at San Francisco
on Wednesday, the 2 2d day of December, 1875, and his remains
are to be this day interred at Mount Hope Cemetery.

" The first of the Chief Magistrates of our city who was
chosen for the prolonged term of two years, he was, in the fall
of 1873, compelled, by the incipiency of the disease which term-
inated his life, to resign the trust confided to him by his
constituency.

" We mourn his early decease, as both a loss personal to
ourselves and to this beloved city of his adoption.

"Recalling his transparent integrity of purpose, his
unselfish devotion to all the trusts, public or private, which
devolved upon him, his tolerance of all opinions, however adverse
to his own ardently held convictions, the conspicuous courtesy
of his manner which made for him attached triends out of all
with whom he came into near relations, his free-hearted, open-
handed generosity of nature, and the shrewd common sense



MEMORIAL. 9

of his perceptions, we desire to record our sense of his many
excellencies, and to convey to his family the assurance that we
are mourners with them."

GEORGE G. CLARKSON, President.
James Brackett, Secretary.
Rochester, N. Y., March 2d, 1S76.



ACTION TAKEN BY THE TRUSTEES OF THE MECHANICS SAVINGS BANK.

At a meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Mechanics
Savings Bank of Rochester, held on Monday, January 3d, 1876.
the following entry was, by a unanimous vote, directed to be
made on the minutes.

Another of the trustees of this bank has entered into rest.

This Board has received the saddening intelligence of the death

of A. Carter Wilder, at the city of San Francisco, on Wednesday,

the 22d day of December, 1875, one °f the original incorporators

of this institution. He gave to its early management efficient

supervision and labor. Finding that his many and protracted

absences from the city prevented him from bestowing upon its

counsels that constant attention which he deemed to be due to a

fiduciary position, he some years since resigned his trust. He

yet retained, however, all of his original interest in the prosperity

and usefulness of this corporation, and was to the last its ardent

friend and, while at home, in almost daily contact with its

working. A shrewd sagacity was the prominent characteristic

of his mind, as was the sharp, incisive mother-wit of his speech.

A gentleman in every fibre, his impulses were of the noblest, and

ever penetrated by a catholic humanitarianism. To a generosity

of disposition which was limitless he united a remarkable suavity

3



IO MEMORIAL.



and magnetism of manner — the index of a womanly warmth of
heart — which made personal attachment the sure result of com-
panionship, and the multitude of his friends who are now stricken
as at a brother's loss is at once the. highest attestation to his
virtues and his most appropriate and effective eulogy.

The Trustees deeply sympathize with his bereaved family
in this great affliction, and with the purpose of in some manner
indicating their sense of personal loss in the early decease of their
late associate, do hereby order this memorandum to be entered in
their book of records, and that a copy be transmitted to Mrs.
Wilder.



[From the Tiiusville {Pa.) Herald, Dec. 28, /S/j.]
THE LATE CARTER WILDER.

It is a melancholy duty to record the death of Hon. A.
Carter Wilder, of Rochester, N. Y., which occurred at San Fran-
cisco a few days since. He had gone thither in quest of health,
but fell a victim to that most inexorable and insidious of Death's
messengers, consumption. Mr. Wilder was a Massachusetts boy,
but came to Rochester in early manhood, and engaged in the
mercantile business in what was then, as now, the leading dry
goods house there, Wilder & Gorton's, later A. S. Mann's. At
that era national events were of thrilling interest, and out of the
exigencies of Freedom arose the Republican party, which said to
Slavery, when the Missouri Compromise line was beaten down,
" Hitherto hast thou come, but no further." It was Boston that
was the prolific nursery of Anti-Slavery ideas, and the armory
whence the brightest blades flashed forth to guard the tree of
Liberty. Parker, Sumner and Phillips, Starr King and their



MEMORIAL. 1 1

compeers, were wont at that period to electrify the country, and
nowhere did they find a more congenial response than in
Rochester. There were the old prophets of the Anti-Slavery
faith, Lindley Murray Moore, Fred. Douglass, S. D. Porter, and.
others " who have entered into rest," but there were younger disci-
ples, too, apt, ardent and devoted, who drank in the spirit of '* the
irrepressible conflict," and among the noble band was Carter
Wilder. We well remember him then. Aristocratic in his tastes
and associations, but Democratic in his feelings and manners, he
made it fashionable in his circle to be radical and outspoken, to
despise ecclesiastical timidity, and to rebuke the cowardice of
party, over which the fell spirit of Slavery then glowered and
domineered. He drew his sentiments from Whittier, Lowell,
Emerson, and the worthies of the early Atlantic. He was well
read in that literature that still sheds the glory of Athens around
Boston and at that time transfigured Faneuil Hall into a Mars
Hill. He went to Kansas to help make her a Free State, and
became soon one of her leading spirits. He had the honor of
representing that virgin State in Congress in 1862-4, a memorable
and exciting period. No Territory ever went through such throes
and convulsions as Kansas, and no State ever had such a baptism
of flood and fire. With the inspiration of Liberty was alloyed the
passion for official distinction and power. Every citizen was
ready to fight and administer an office. Statesmen, politicians
and shysters, principle, intrigue and corruption ruled the hour.
Such orators as Marc. Parrott and Jim Lane could only have
been cradled in "Bleeding Kansas;" such terribly earnest men
as old John Brown could only have got their "mission " there
gazing on the smoking ruins of homes and the graves of children
massacred. Such editors, shooting at sight, could only have
lived or died on the confines of civilization, meeting with an



MEMORIAL.



irruption of barbarism. It was out of these factious elements,
these bitter strifes, that Mr. Wilder issued a representative, and a
faithful and honorable career he led at the beleaguered capital.
The art of speaking must be acquired early, or not at all, in a
distinguished form, and Mr. Wilder did not seek much eminence,
and he was perhaps too critical and knew too much to attain the
abandon of a public speaker, who is lost if he stops to think, and
can only control others when he seems to lose himself. But
socially he was strong, his manners sincere and unaffected, and
his principles and his fidelity gave him influence and bound
friends to him with " hooks of steel." His reading was wide and
cultivated, his memory retentive, his judgment sound and discrim-
inating, his colloquial gifts delightful. His health was not equal
to the contentions of the most contentious of States. He returned
to Rochester, and the Republican party took him up, and he
became Mayor of that most princely of cities by a vote that
attested the cordial attachment he was capable of inspiring, while
disarming envy and enmity by a disposition that never asserted
itself in disparaging comparisons with other men's talents or
humbler fortunes. He had bought in and sold out an interest in
the Rochester Express, one of the brightest and most vigorous of
the daily press of Western New York, but this was only an
episode.- He had not the physical strength for an active career,
and had soon to put aside the duties and burdens of life. It was
only a few months since that we saw him in Rochester. He was one
whom you would step out of your way to meet, and he had just
returned from Italy, and had closed the eyes of one of his party,
a relative, on that foreign shore. We saw with misgiving how
attenuated he had become and worn to a shadow, and had a
painful presentiment that this might be the last time for a friendly
greeting and good-bye to Carter Wilder. We have said this much



MEMORIAL. 13

as a posthumous tribute, to one who has spoken to many younger
and struggling men, less favored, words of kindness and
encouragement, and of one who deserved to bear " the grand old
name of Gentleman."



[From the Rocky Mountain News, Denver, Cot.']
DEATH OF AN EX-CONGRESSMAN.

The remains of Hon. A. C. Wilder passed through
Cheyenne, a few days since, en route from San Francisco to
Rochester, N. Y., for interment. Mr. Wilder came to Denver
some weeks ago. He arrived here in a most delicate state of
health, and his friends advised against any attempt to go further
west. But, while pleased with Colorado,, his reliance for restora-
tion to health was wholly set upon California, and thither he
went, only to grow worse and die shortly after arrival. A native
of Massachusetts, but a resident for many years of Rochester,
N. Y., Mr. Wilder removed to Kansas at an early day, taking an
active and honorable part in the historic struggle of that common-
wealth. In appreciation of his manly services the people there
sent him to Congress, and at the expiration of his term he
returned to Rochester, of which city he was afterward elected
Mayor. He sought to arrest his failing health by travel and
residence in Florida and the sanitariums beyond the sea. Mr.
Wilder was a man of most pleasing address, varied abilities and
splendid attainments, and among his admirers are some of the
most prominent families of Denver.



14 MEMORIAL.

[From the Los Angeles (Cat.) Daily Herald, Dec. 29, /c?7J.]

Hon. A. C. Wilder, of the Rochester Express, who died
at the Palace Hotel last week, has had an eventful history.
Many years ago he was a leading merchant of Leavenworth,
Kansas, and represented the State in Congress from 1863 to 1865.
He afterward returned to Rochester, N. Y., and was elected
Mayor. Subsequently he went to Europe for his health, but was
not benefited, and died in San Francisco last week. His brother,
D. W. Wilder, is Auditor of the State of Kansas and the most
brilliant editor in the Missouri valley.



[From the Lawrence [Kan.) Standard, Dec. 24, i8jj.~\
DEATH OF HON. A. C. WILDER.

Very many of our readers will learn with deep and sincere
regret of the death of Hon. A. C. Wilder, which occurred at
San Francisco night before last. He passed through Kansas but
a short time ago on his way to the Pacific coast, going there for
the benefit of his health, which had not been good for some
years. Mr. Wilder was well known in Kansas, having lived here
many years. He was Representative in Congress from this State
from 1863 to 1865. He was a man of good ability, active,
energetic and public spirited, and has here many warm, devoted
personal friends. Mr. Wilder was a brother of Hon. D. W.
Wilder, State Auditor.



MEMORIAL.



15



[ Topeka (A'an ) Commonwealth, Dec. jj, r8?j.]



DEATH OF A. C. WILDER.

A dispatch was received here yesterday announcing the
death of A. Carter Wilder in San Francisco on the evening of the
22d inst. Mr. Wilder had been ill with consumption about three
years, and said when he passed through here last month that he
was taking his last journey.

He was born in Worcester County, Mass. , and was forty-
seven years of age. He first came to Kansas in 1857, took up
his residence in Leavenworth and remained there until October,
1865. He took an active part in politics ; was secretary and
chairman of the first Republican committees, and was elected to
Congress in 1862. After returning to Rochester, N. Y., he was
elected Mayor, and once lacked only three votes of a nomination
to Congress in that district.

As a Republican he was a radical, and a sincere believer in
principles. He was an unusually good judge of character and of
the course of public sentiment and events. His good humor,
keen wit and kind heart made him very attractive and popular,
and his death will be sincerely mourned wherever he was known.



[From the Lawrence (Kan.) Republican- Journal, Dec. 2j, /Syj.]
DEATH OF A. C. WILDER.

The death of Hon. A. C. Wilder, which was mentioned in
our telegraphic dispatches yesterday morning, will cause a feeling
of regret in the breasts of thousands of old Kansans, by whom
he is well remembered.

Mr. Wilder was a brother of Hon. D. W. Wilder, Auditor
of State. He settled in Leavenworth in March, 1857, and during



1 6 MEMORIAL.

the Free State struggle, up to the admission of the State, was one
of our most ardent and trusted workers. It was largely through
his efforts, combined with those of D. R. Anthony, the Vaughans,
Nelson McCracken, Henry J. Adams, and a few others, that
Leavenworth was rescued in 1857 from the Pro-Slavery party.

In 1862 he was nominated and elected by the Republicans
of Kansas to succeed Martin F. Conway in Congress. Mr.
Wilder filled the office to the acceptance of his constituents, and
ought to have been returned in 1864.

As a man he was of an unusually genial temperament, har-
monious, bright and pungent in conversation, saying good things
himself and appreciating them in others.

He removed to Rochester, N. Y., in 1865, and has since
resided there, holding at one time the office of Mayor of the city.

A few weeks since he visited his brother in Topeka, on his
way to California for his health, and at that time expressed the
premonition that he was making his last journey. He died of
consumption.



[From the Atchison {Kan.) Daily Champion, Dec. 23, /S?j.]
A. CARTER WILDER.

The telegraph brought intelligence, on Thursday night, of
the death of Hon. A. Carter Wilder, which occurred at San
Francisco, Cal., on the evening of the 226. inst.

Mr. Wilder was an old citizen of Kansas, and was elected
to represent this State in Congress in 1862. He was born in
Worcester County, Mass., and was forty-seven years of age. He
came to Kansas in 1857 from Rochester, N. Y., locating in
Leavenworth, where he continued to reside until October, 1865.



MEMORIAL. 17

He then returned to Rochester, where he married, and engaged
in business pursuits. He was subsequently elected Mayor of that
city, and later he only lacked three votes of receiving the nom-
ination for Congress from that district.

Mr. Wilder was an earnest Republican, and for many
years was either secretary or chairman of the Republican State
Central Committee in this State. He was a delegate to the
Republican National Convention held at Chicago in i860, and
to that held at Baltimore four years later.

He was a man of great energy, thoroughly in earnest in
everything he said or did, and very firm in his friendships. When
enlisted in behalf either of a principle or a friend, he never tired


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