John N. Allen
Morris Co. Up


Biographical and Genealogical History of Morris County New Jersey. Illustrated. Vol. II., Lewis Publishing Company, New York and Chicago, 1899.

A resident of Madison for more than a quarter of a century, the subject of this memoir was a native of Cornwall, England, his birth having occurred on the 1st of April, 1818. He was reared in the land of his nativity and in the days of his youth served a five years apprenticeship to the tailor's trade. He afterward worked with his brother, in England, for a year, and then determined to see if the New World would not offer better advantages for the young man, who, without capital or influential friends to aid him in life, must work his way upward alone, depending entirely upon his own resources.

Accordingly, in 1844, Mr. Allen bade adieu to home and friends and sailed for America. he took up his residence in Whippany, New Jersey, and followed his trade there for a quarter of a century. His mental and physical activity-the only capital that he brought with him to the New World-combined with his poverty to make immediate employment a necessity, and he at once announced himself in readiness to all kinds of tailoring. His efficiency and trustworthiness were soon manifest, and in the course of time he secured an excellent patronage. He continued in business in Whippany until 1865, when he removed to Madison and became identified with the industrial interests of that city, carrying on a tailoring business until 1881, when he retired to private life, and thereafter enjoyed the fruits of his former toil.

Mr. Allen was married in 1849 to Miss Charlotte Bruin, a daughter of Alexander Bruin, of Morris county. Two children were born of that union: Mary Matilda, wife of Melvin K. Hopping, of Chatham; and George Alexander, of Madison. The mother died in July 18, 1853, and Mr. Allen was again married in 1856, his second union being with Miss Martha A. Carter, a daughter of Mahlon Carter. They had one child, Martha Ann, who became of the wife of M.B. Crane, and died in 1880, leaving one son, Clifford Morrison.

Mr. Allen was originally a Democrat in his political convictions, but in later years was not allied with any party, voting his convictions in support of the men whom he thought best qualified for office. He took great interest in the cause of temperance and did all in his power for the promulgation of temperance sentiment and habits among his fellow citizens. He attended the Methodist Episcopal church, and his life was pure and clean. He advocated all moral measures, and in his own business career set forth an example of honorable dealing that is well worthy of emulation.

Mr. Allen died on Monday, January 31, 1898, of heart failure, superinduced by a severe attack of la grippe, encountered about two years prior to his death, and leaving him in precarious health.

Transcribed by Christopher Cresta


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