Lewis C. Tompkins
Morris Co. Up


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

One of the prominent and well-known business men of Morristown is Lewis C. TOMPKINS, who was born at Littleton, Morris county, New Jersey, on the 23d of October, 1843, a son of Uzal P. and Julia Ann (CHRISTIAN) TOMPKINS, both of whom were natives of New Jersey. The paternal grandfather was Jonathan TOMPKINS, a representative of an old New Jersey family and a descendant of one of three brothers who emigrated from England to this country at an early day. Uzal P. TOMPKINS was a hatter by trade, but during the most of his life engaged in farming pursuits. He died in Morris county in 1863, aged about fifty-two years. Mrs. TOMPKINS departed this, life in 1893, in her seventy-eighth year. They were the parents of six children, namely:

  • Elvira J.,
  • Theo D.,
  • Eliza S., deceased,
  • George W.,
  • Lewis C., and
  • Mary L., deceased.

Lewis C. TOMPKINS spent his early days in Littleton, acquiring his literary education in the public schools of that place. After leaving school he clerked for a while in a store. At the age of seventeen he left home to take up life on his own responsibility, and went to Rockaway, where he obtained a clerkship in a stove and tinware store, continuing to be thus employed for five years, and then came to Morristown, arriving here on the 1st of January, 1866. May 13, 1867, he entered the employ of J. M. Benjamin, dealer in stoves and tinware, with whom he remained until his (Benjamin's) death, in January, 1875, when he and William E. Welsh purchased the business, which they have since conducted at the old stand, No. 17 Market street. Although they began with little more capital than a good name and an excellent credit, which was theirs by reason of their known reliability and integrity in business circles, they soon acquired a large patronage, and success has attended their efforts in this line of enterprise. They occupy the place now owned by them, with a frontage of fifty-two feet and a depth of eighty feet, with two floors forty by eighty feet, and they carry a complete and varied stock of tin, sheet-iron and copper ware, parlor and cook stoves, furnaces and ranges, besides which they do plumbing, gas and steam fitting and tin and slate roofing; and the business done by this firm requires the employment of fourteen assistants, all of whom are competent in their respective departments.

In politics Mr. TOMPKINS is for the " best man." He is a member of the Odd Fellows lodge of Morristown, and a leading officer in the Golden Star fraternity, holding now the second office in the order. He has been a member of the Baptist church for thirty-three years, and a trustee of the same for more than twenty years. He was married in 1866 to Miss Annie E. VANDERHOOF, of Denville, New Jersey, and of their five children only two survive,

  • J. Hayes and
  • Frank E.

The deceased children are

  • Lena A., who died at the age of fourteen years;
  • Roy Mills, who died at the age of ten, and
  • May Eliza, who lived to the age of nine years.

This biography was scanned and contributed by Catherine Smith DeMayo.


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