EUGENE E. DOUVILLE
Portrait And Biographical Record Of Northern Michigan
Containing Portraits And Biographical Sketches Of Prominent
And Representative Citizens
Record Publishing Co., 1895
|Eugene E. Douville, Postmaster at Manistee, born in Milwaukee, Wis.,
January 15, 1844, was reared in that city, attending the high school for
a time, and graduating from Lincoln's College at the age of eighteen. On
the completion of his education he learned photography, which trade he followed
for some time thereafter. Coming to Manistee in the Spring of 1865,
he opened a gallery, and conducted an extensive business in that line for
From the photography business Mr. Douville turned his attention to the insurance and real-estate business, and has since had a large trade in that line. He has made a specialty of handling pine lands, both for himself and others. Personally he has inspected much of the land in the northern part of the state, and few are better informed concerning the valuation of property than he is. Office and abstract work he has also made a specialty. In connection with Edward Lewis, the County Register of Deeds, he opened a set of abstracts for Manistee County, and these he still owns. All land transfers have been entered in this record book, so that they are easy of access. The Lockwood system, which is considered the most complete, was used in the compilation of the records, it being covered by copyright.
About five years ago Mr. Douville visited the southern pine lands, accompanied by M.W. Gallagher, a practical woodsman, who had personally inspected the pine lands in all of the Gulf States. They made large investments there, and during the following years following had an office in New orleans about six months of each year. Their sales were extensive, aggregating about two hundred thousand acres of pine lands, which were sold largely to Northern lumbermen. Mr. Douville still holds an interest in about one hundred thousand acres of pine lands in the South.
The Douville addition to the city of Manistee, which was made by our subject, consists of about forty lots lying in the center of the town and occupying a very desirable location. He also owns suburban property and several business blocks that bring in a good income from their rental. For some years he was in partnership with his brother, Walter W., in the book business at Manistee, the trade being an extensive one. After twenty years together, his brother, who had been the manager of the business, died suddenly, in 1886, after which the stock was sold.
On coming to Manistee Mr. Douville became identified with the Democratic party, which in those days was largely in the minority, the place being considered a Republican stronghold. Through his efforts, in connection with a few other loyal Democrats, he succeeded in bringing his party to the front as a formidable and often successful competitor of the other organization. Beginning in 1876, he served four years as Probate Judge. For one term he was Mayor, also served as City Recorder and City Treasurer, and has long been identified with the County Executive Committee, of which he is the present Chairman. He has attended the majority of the party conventions and took part in the Congregessional campaigns. February 1, 1894, he was appointed Postmaster, having been selected after a close contest among several competitors.
In religion Mr. Douville adheres to the belief of the Unitarian organization. In 1876 he married Mrs. Helen A. (Foskett) Traver, of Erie, Ill. Socially he has been active in the lodge work of the Odd Fellows' society, passing the chairs in the encampment as well as in the subordinate lodge. He is a member of the Grand Lodge and Grand Encampment, and is connected with the Knights of Honor. In the Order of Rebekah he holds membership, as does also his wife.