At the age of thirteen William MURPHY entered the Miami University at Oxford, where he diligently devoted himself to his studies for the four succeeding years, which put him in possession of a thorough English education. His tastes, however, were for a business career. After spending some time with his father, who was then largely engaged in the stock business, he settled at Oxford (to which place his father soon removed), and established himself in the grain trade, which he continued with success till 1865.
He now sought a larger field for his operations. He settled in Hamilton, and in company with Jacob SHAFFER, bought the Hamilton City Mills, in West Hamilton, formerly owned by N. G. CURTIS. An extensive business was soon built up, and continued till 1869, when the mills were burned. With but little delay Mr. MURPHY and his partner bought the West Hamilton Mills, where they continued the manufacture, very extensively, of the finest grades of flour, till 1876. Mr. MURPHY then dissolved partnership with Mr. SHAFFER, disposing of his interest to him. He then formed a partnership with Mr. John SORTMAN. The Hamilton City Mills were built by them, and under the firm name of Murphy & Sortman, the mills were kept in operation till 1880. Mr. MURPHY then withdrew from the firm, and leased the Hydraulic Mills, which are still operated by him. The business done here is exclusively flouring, and is very extensive. Mr. MURPHY manufactures a very superior quality of flour, for which he finds a ready market throughout the New England States, where the greater portion of his shipments are made.
In the Spring of 1882, Mr. MURPHY, in company with Messrs. F. B. THOMPSON, S. D. CONE, and H. A. DILG, organized the Dr. Temple Medicine Company at Hamilton and Cincinnati, with a capital of $150,000. Mr. THOMPSON was made president and Mr. MURPHY treasurer of the concern. The medicines manufactured are the well-known Asthma specific and "Hops and Boneset" discovered by Dr. C. W. TEMPLE nearly forty years ago. The former remedy had been improved in its medicinal powers by the Temple Company, who have also prepared specifics for hay fever, dyspepsia, and other diseases. From the inception of the company, which is but a few months since, it has met with great success. They are pushing the enterprise vigorously, and their popular remedies now are found in all parts of the United States and other countries. Although these medicines have had great local popularity for many years, certainly as far back as 1849, their manufacture and sale have never been properly managed, until the present company took the enterprise in charge, and it is now fast becoming one of the important institutions of the city. Mr. MURPHY owned and controlled the West Hamilton Hydraulic Water-power for ten years.
In 1876 Mr. MURPHY was elected a member of the city council of Hamilton, and served in that capacity for three successive terms, or till 1882. During these six years he was always found among the first to take steps towards public improvements, and to institute measures for the city's good.
Mr. MURPHY has been married twice. He married his first wife, Miss Lorinda BAKE, of Contreras, Ohio, daughter of Peter and Tabitha BAKE, December 22, 1864. She died the following year from the effects of a burn by coal oil, two days following the accident. She left one child, a daughter, Dora, now seventeen years of age. He married his present wife, Mrs. Eliza SMALLEY, widow of Isaac SMALLEY, daughter of Henry H. and Lydia MYERS Seal, February 9, 1868. Mrs. MURPHY's father was a native of Pennsylvania, and her mother of Butler County, Ohio. The former removed with his father, at an early day, near Brookville, Indiana, where he afterwards engaged in farming, a calling he still follows. He carries on a very extensive farm, though at the the advanced age of seventy-three, while his wife is sixty-eight. Mrs. MURPHY has one son by her first husband, Henry Burton SMALLEY, now eighteen years of age, and engaged in the milling business. Seven children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. MURPHY, though but four are now living. William J. H. was born June 7, 1871; Eva Pearl, June 28, 1873; Minnie Myrtle, December 31, 1877; and Marie, September 23, 1880.
Mr. MURPHY has always been a Democrat in politics. He is a member of the Knights of Honor and Knights and Ladies of Honor, and has also been an Odd Fellow for the past three years. As a business man Mr. MURPHY is cautious, considerate, and uniformly successful, and he has the reputation of being the best-natured man of Hamilton.
Brigadier-general ARMISTEAD and Colonel LONG, of the United States topographical engineers, in their report to the Secretary of War, say:
"Of the Miami country generally beauty rather than grandeur is strikingly characteristic of its main features. The immediate valley of the Miami River, in particular, presents a beautiful expanse of intervale land, bounded on both sides by gently sloping hills, and like that of the Muskingum, embosoming two or more benches, or plains, rising by gentle gradations one above another, but far more spacious on the former than on the latter. These valley lands are remarkably rich and productive, and are for the most part cleared, and in a high state of cultivation. A view of some portions of this interesting valley, early in September, when contiguous fields, as far as the eye can reach, are clad in the luxuriant verdure of growing corn, is one of the most delightful prospects that can be witnessed. On returning from the valley and reaching the uplands, a view not less interesting, though less captivating, is presented; a broad surface, generally of a rolling, but occasionally of a gently waving aspect, and stretching to the farthest limits of the horizon, here meets the eye. In richness of soil, variety of products, and healthfulness of appearance, all combined, it is not surpassed, probably, by any upland region to be met with in any other part of the United States.
"The country around Hamilton and Rossville, for many miles in every direction, presents the more comely and interesting features generally exhibited by the Miami country. The woodlands, which formerly presented a dense and heavy growth of timber, shrubbery, vines, grasses, etc., have given way to cultivated fields, yielding all the necessaries of life in the greatest profusion. Corn, wheat, rye, barley, oats, potatoes, tobacco, hay, fruits of all kinds common or peculiar to the climate, peas, beans, hemp, flax, etc., are among the products of the soil, and these, together with horses, cattle, sheep, hogs, poultry, beef, butter, lard, tallow, etc., constitute the leading articles produced for market, all of which can be supplied in abundance, and on the most moderate terms.
"The facilities afforded to this neighborhood by the hydraulic canal for trade and intercourse by water with remote parts of the country are invaluable. A broad basin, nearly a mile long, and fifteen to twenty feet deep, connecting the town of Hamilton with the canal, affords a spacious and commodious port for the commercial business of the neighborhood.
"The valley of the river and the adjacent country on both sides, in this neighborhood, are similar to what they are represented to be in the neighborhood of Dayton, except that the uplands present an aspect considerably more rolling and diversified in the vicinity of the site now under consideration. The river, in its passage through this neighborhood, is more serpentine, shoally, and rapid than in other places, and embosoms an island containing three hundred and ten acres, called Millikin's Island, which is situated a little above the town site of Hamilton."
During much of his preparatory course he maintained himself by teaching school, beginning at the early age of fifteen, and for a large share of the expenses of his college course he served the university in various capacities, but had to create a debt, which was faithfully repaid upon his entrance into business life. After graduation he again undertook the pedagogue vocation, but in a higher field, becoming at first principal of the high schools, then superintendent of the public schools in Hamilton, in which two positions he remained three years.
At the expiration of his year as superintendent, he accepted the charge of the Republican organ here, the Hamilton Intelligencer, which he conducted, or assisted in editing, for about two years, in association with his old friend and classmate, Colonel Minor MILLIKIN. It was the early day of the Republican party; Butler County was largely Democratic. It was an important transition period, and the Intelligencer bore its full share in fixing the current of public opinion. The fight with the opponents was at times close and sharp, and Mr. McCLUNG was himself personally attacked by an infuriated Democrat, and bore from the conflict an honorable scar which he wears to this day. He was, during this time of editiorial work, engaged at intervals in the study of the law, and in the Winter of 1859 and 1860 he was appointed by the governor to the position of probate judge of the county in the place of William R. KINDER, who died in office.
Upon the outbreak of the war, the call for volunteers being issued Monday morning, April 16, 1861, he enlisted in a Hamilton company as a private soldier, and went with it to Camp Jefferson, Columbus, where it was sworn into service April 24th, and assigned as Company F, Third Ohio Infantry. On the 27th of the same month the regiment was sent, with five companies of the Eleventh, to establish Camp Dennison, on the Little Miami Railroad. Mr. McCLUNG was taken from the ranks, where he was still serving as a private, and made quartermaster of the camp, in which place of responsibility and honor he was detained, contrary to all precedents of the service, until the following March, hundreds of thousands of dollars in money and property passing through his hands meanwhile. He then received a commission, to date from February 19, 1862, as captain and assistant quartermaster. He remained at the camp until Jun 15, 1862, having meanwhile rebuilt it, in order to fit it for Winter quarters, and was then ordered to Camp Chase to build the barracks for rebel prisoners there.
When the call for five hundred thousand more was made by President Lincoln, Camp Dennison acquired more importance than ever, and Captain McCLUNG was ordered back to equip the regiments forming therein. From first to last it is believed that he prepared not far from one hundred regiments for the field. When the second levy of troops had been equipped he supervised the conversion of the barracks at the camp during November and December, of 1862, into a convalescent hospital. Thence he departed for Madison, Indiana, whee hospitals more convenient to the river were to be built, and then to Cincinnati, to take charge of the purchase of supplies, in which capacity he served until the close of the war. His money accounts with the government, during his entire term of service, aggregated about twenty-five million dollars; his property accounts, more than twice as much.
His services were not finally dispensed with until November 8, 1865, when he was honorably mustered out, at his own reiterated request. Shortly before this, October 30, he was breveted major of volunteers, for faithful and meritorious services, on the recommendation of General EKIN and other high officers of the quartermaster's department.
He returned to Hamilton, and was elected president of the Second National Bank, although not then a stockholder. In about a year and a half he resigned that place, and began the manufacture of machinery, in Hamilton, remaining in this business for two years, when he exchanged his stock in the maching-shop for an interest in the Woodsdale Paper Company, of which he took charge, and remained its business manager until February 1, 1879, when he removed to Cincinnati and became assistant postmaster. In January, 1881, he was nominated by President HAYES surveyor of the port of Cincinnati, and again by President GARFIELD, upon his accession, when he was promptly confirmed by the Senate, and received his commission of date March 10, 1881.
Colonel McCLUNG was married on the 19th of March, 1861, to Miss Ann Carter HARRISON, only daughter of Carter B. HARRISON, youngest son of General HARRISON. Her mother was Mary, of the family of John SUTHERLAND, one of the pioneers of Butler County. She is a worthy helpmate of her distinguished spouse. They have had no children.
The members were as follows: C. K. SMITH, A. D. KYLE, James B. CAMERON, Ira M. COLLYER, Sineas PIERSON, Richard CORNELL, H. S. EARHART, G. W. McADAMS, J. H. SMITH, John DAVIS, James C. DeCAMP, Aaron POTTER, John HERRON, Philip BERRY, John RINEHART, James ALBERT, J. B. McFARLAND, James WATSON, William CORNELL, Benjamon DAVIS, Stephen WEST, John S. WILES, M. W. CLYNE, George KRUG, Isaac M. WALTERS, William CONLEY, Robert WHITEHEAD, Aaron WOODRUFF, W. G. SAUNDERS, John EICHLEBERGER, Joseph DURBIN, D. G. ROSE, John JEWELL, F. T. WALTON, J. BAYLES, Jacob WAYNE, Joseph WALLACE, A. ROLLINS, Thomas FAWCETT, Otis BROWN, Jonathan CONOVER, Samuel JOHNSON, Andrew STEWART, James O'CONNOR, Peter MYERS, M. L. SERREL, and Nelson RALPH.
At that time not more than nine Freeemasons were known to reside in Hamilton or the vicinity; but soon after the establishment of the lodge a number of persons joined, and were initiated into the mysteries of the craft, so that they shortly became respectable as to numbers and standing in society. They continued to hold their meetings at the house of William MURRAY for several years. The lodge was then removed to the house on the south-west corner of Second and Basin Streets, where a tavern was then kept by Thomas BLAIR, and afterward by James WILSON.
Afterwards they leased from the Hamilton Literary Society the second story of a building erecting for an academy on lot No. 140, at the intersection of Dayton and Third Streets, then belonging to the literary society, on condition that they would erect and finish the second story, and maintain it in good repair at their own expense. This they fitted up in a neat and tasteful manner, and the lodge was removed to that room, where it was continued until 1831. A school was kept in the lower apartment. The building standing in an isolated place, some evil-disposed persons broke open the room, carried away their jewels, and injured the furniture. This induced them to remove to a more secure place. Accordingly, on the 1st of April, 1831, they leased the fourth story of the Hamilton Hotel for a term of twenty years, at a rent of eighteen dollars per year, which they forthwith fitted up in a neat and appropriate manner for the accommodation of the lodge.
The number in 1843 attending the lodge, as actual members, was forty. In addition to these, there were about fifty more who belonged to the order, but were not in the habit of attending regularly, making in all about ninety Freemasons within the jurisdiction of the lodge.
The excitement as to Masonry and anti-Masonry which prevailed in several parts of the United States from 1827 to 1836, did not agitate (at least to any considerable extent) the neighborhood of Hamilton. The fraternity was not interfered with by the community.
The worthy masters have been Thomas BLAIR, Samuel BAYLESS, Joseph HOUGH, Joseph BENHAM, Alexander PROUDFIT, Lewis WEST, Daniel MILLIKIN, Charles K. SMITH, William B. VAN HOOK, Jesse CORWIN, John H. DUBBS, T. M. THOMAS, Elijah VANCE, Thomas REED, Benjamin F. RALEIGH, William SHEELEY, Isaac ROBERTSON, George W. LOUTHAN, William C. HUNTER, John M. PARKS, H. H. WALLACE, George W. DYE, John B. LAWDER, John CRANE, William FENN, J. CONOVER, and Allen ANDREWS. There are other Masonic institutions here, but we have been unable to get information about them.
They have grown considerably in the last three years, now having sixty-two members. A year ago they bought a lot, and intend shortly to begin the erection of an edifice on the east side of the river. The Church is still a mission, and receives support from the general Church fund. The first pastor was the Rev. Martin HARTMAN, and since that time they have had as preachers Messrs. KESSINGER, VOLTZ, RINEHART, Jacob GABLER (under whom the church was bought), BREUNING, Charles HELWIG, John FELSING, and John BIER. The Sabbath-school has eighty scholars, and fifteen officers and teachers. Frank KELLER is superintendent. There is also a Christian Church, on the west side, of which Elder GAFF is the pastor, of whose history we are not informed.
Completing his course, he entered the office of L. D. CAMPBELL, in Hamilton, about 1845, and read law with him. From this he went to Jackson & Hawkins, at Eaton, and was admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of Ohio, at Columbus, in the Winter of 1845 and 1846. A year after he entered into a partnership with Judge William J. GILMORE, which lasted a year, and was dissolved by Judge GILMORE going to Eaton, where he married. Mr. MOORE remained in Hamilton, and has been here ever since. He was elected State senator from Butler and Warren Counties in 1860, being the first Republican to fill that position. He was mayor of Rossville in 1850 or 1851, a position he soon after resigned. He was originally a member of the Associate Reformed Church, but for the past eight or ten years has been a member of the Presbyterian Church. In 1864 he was elected colonel of the One Hundred and Sixty-seventh Ohio National Guard, and commanded it during its service of four months in West Virginia. A full account of this regiment is given under the head of the Rebellion. They were mustered out at Hamilton, in September of that year.
The colonel was married in 1845, to Miss Mary C. CALDWELL, who was born in Preble County in 1823. Mr. and Mrs. MOORE are the parents of seven children, of whom five are living. Wilberforce is a member of the bar, in partnership with his father; E. Everett is a member of the legal profession, now a teacher and farmer of Missouri; Walter P. is a farmer of Missouri; Thomas MOORE, Jr., is one of the local editors of the Hamilton Daily News; and Mamie is still at home. Colonel MOORE has long been an active and laborious worker in the Republican cause, and before that in the Whig. He is a frequent speaker at temperance and Sunday-school meetings, and is interested in every thing that concerns this city or locality.
Joseph GARRISON, who was sheriff of this county from 1856 to 1860, comes of an old family. His parents were early settlers. He was born in Madison Township on the 29th of November, 1825, and was married August 8, 1854, to Mary Ann HOUSER, daughter of John and Rachel HOUSER. She was born in Fairfield Township, January 8, 1834. They had two children. William J., the eldest child, died at the age of nine months. He was born march 24, 1856, and Mary Ann, October 10, 1858. Mr. GARRISON was in the Mexican War, where he served as quartermaster's sergeant. His wife's brother, Samuel HOUSER, was in the late war for over three years. After ceasing to be sheriff, Mr. GARRISON engaged in the manufacture of brick. He died December 9, 1865.
He resided for many years in a comfortable dwelling on Prospect Hill, in West Hamilton, a point where the Indians in olden time laid in wiat to shoot and scalp persons who straggled from the fort. Captain DELORAC also once resided in Cincinnati, where he was engaged in trade. In his youth he was a clerk for John SUTHERLAND, and then and afterwards acquired a knowledge of boating on the Miami unsurpassed by any other man. At the time of his death, some ten years ago, he was one of the oldest citizens.
Too feeble to support a regular pastor, the conference made it a circuit station, and sent them a preacher every two weeks. The Rev. Henry ATKINSON and the Rev. M. M. CLARK were its first preachers. The latter gentleman was one of the best educated colored ministers of his day. He was pious and eloquent, and his influence is still felt among this people. There is but one person living who was among the founders in 1842, Mrs. Harriet SAMPSON.
A new chapel was erected in 1877. It is a capacious edifice, situated in a desirable part of the city, of brick structure, sixty-two by forty. It will seat three hundred persons, and cost about six thousand dollars. At the entrance of the auditorium, agains, the east wall, there is a marble slat with the following inscription on it:
In 1853, Mr. ANDERSON, with B. W. TANQUARY, engaged in the milling business, in what was known as the old Hamilton River Mill, but their facilities not being large enough for their rapidly increasing business, they erected a new mill soon afterward, at a cost of from eighteen to twenty thousand dollars. After ten years of very successful business, a disastrous fire in the month of April, 1864, swept it all away, involving a loss of thirty-one thousand dollars, on which there was an insurance of eleven thousand. Nothing daunted, Mr. ANDERSON purchased another mill, then owned by Lewis D. CAMPBELL, having made arrangements for the CAMPBELL Mill the very morning the other was destroyed. In June, 1866, Mr. TANQUARY withdrew from the business, and since that time the firm has been known as ANDERSON & Co.
Mr. ANDERSON is one of the largest stockholders in the Second National Bank of Hamilton, and occupies the position of vice-president. He became a member of the Presbyterian Church, in the year 1862, and has been a ruling elder in that organization for eight years. He was married, on the 29th of March, 1836, in Millwood, Virginia, to Rachel C., daughter of James CARTER, who was proprietor of the Red Bird Paper Mills, of Frederick County, Virginia. Mr. CARTER was a prominent and influential man of that county, and belonged to one of the oldest families of Virginia. As a result of his marriage with this lady, Mr. ANDERSON has had two daughters, only one of whom survives. Alberta J., who became the wife of the Rev. H. M. RICHARDSON, a Baptist clergyman of Rochester, New York, died in 1864. Virginia C., the daughter now surviving, is the wife of George K. SHAFFER, of Hamilton.
John W. BENNINGHOFEN, one of the most highly respected citizens of Hamilton, and a prominent woolen manufacturer, was born on the 12th of March, 1812, in Wuelfrath, in Prussia. His parents had six children, of whom he was the eldest. Their names were John P. BENNINGHOFEN and Wilhelmina RIFFELTRATH, and the occupation they followed was that of weavers of silk. When he had reached fifteen years of age his school education ceased, and he was apprenticed to the dry-goods trade. He remained in this till he was twenty-nine years of age, or the year 1841, and came to the United States in 1848, landing in New Orleans. No sooner had he arrived there than he took passage for Cincinnati, coming immediately to Hamilton. Here he peddled for three years, and then acted as clerk for John W. SOHN in his leather and brewery business, staying in this occupation for about seven years. At the expiration of this time he entered into partnership with Asa SHULER as a woolen manufacturer, and remained in that occupation, under the firm name of SHULER & BENNINGHOFEN, until his death, which occurred on the 19th of April, 1881. He was then aged sixty-nine years, one month and seven days.
Mr. BENNINGHOFEN was twice married. The first marriage was to Gertrude HISS in Germany, in 1832, who bore him two children: Robert, who died in 1872, and William, who died in 1867. His second marriage was to Miss Wilhelmina E. KLEIN, on the first of October, 1854, at Cincinnati. She was born in Wirtemberg, Germany, December 14, 1832, but came to America when a child with her parents, John U. and Wilhelmina KLEIN. The father died in Stark County, in November, 1859, aged seventy-three years, and the mother, whose maiden name was NISS, died in March, 1876, aged eighty-two years. Mr. and Mrs. BENNINGHOFEN had five children. Christiana was born September 25, 1855; Wilhelmina, March 29, 1858; Peter, September 29, 1860; Pauline, March 11, 1863, and Caroline, April 8, 1866. In the late war Robert, his son by the first marriage, served three years, and Mrs. BENNINGHOFEN had a brother Christian in the hundred-days' service.
Mr. BENNINGHOFEN was very highly esteemed. He was a Democrat in politics, and voted first for Franklin Pierce. In appearance he was above the medium size, and somewhat inclined to obesity. He had a large head and a very prominent forehead.
Colonel William SHEELY, one of the oldest residents of Butler County, died in September, 1859, at his residence near this city. Colonel SHEELY came to this county at an early day, and filled several prominent positions, having been an influential citizen. He had for some time been afflicted with disease of the heart, and it is supposed that this was the cause of his death, as he died suddenly.
Hamilton Lodge, No. 17, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, was instituted in the third story of the Lohman building, then owned by Norris CRANE, January 21, 1843, by Charles THOMAS, M. W. G. M.; Thomas SHERLOCK, M. W. D. G. M.; David T. SNELBAKER, G. W.; Samuel W. CORWIN, G. S.; Isaac HEFLEY, G. T.; Henry M. BATES, G. G.; William ACONN, G. C.
The chartered members were as follows: John W. ERWIN, I. M. SPILLER, Wilson CUMMINS, Charles K. SMITH, O. S. WITHERBY, William WILSON, James B. CAMERON, John S. BROWN, James REYNOLDS, Jacob EBERT, Charles SNYDER, Samuel JOHNSON, Henry RICHMOND, R. H. LEWIS, and Thomas DAVIS.
The first meeting of the organizers was held on Main Street, Rossville, near Perry G. SMITH's drug-store. They held their meetings for some time there, until the Odd Fellows' Hall was built by a stock company. It cost ten thousand dollars, and is a large and handsome building. It was afterward sold by the sheriff, and was bought by Daniel SORTMAN. It is now owned partly by the Odd Fellows. The only surviving members are John W. ERWIN, of this city; O. S. WITHERBY, of California; Samuel JOHNSON, of Cincinnati; and Thomas DAVIS, of Illinois.
The lodge is now located in their own building, on the south-west corner of High and Third Streets, with a membership of one hundred, and from its organization to this date has been able to furnish relief according to the requirements of the laws of Odd Fellows. There is also a German lodge in this city.
Two brothers of Dr. HAIR made themselves widely known in the ministry. They were both Presbyterians. One of them died a few years ago in Chicago, while still laboring in his profession. A circumstance worthy of note, as not having a parallel, perhaps, in the United States, is connected with the family of Dr. HAIR's oldest brother. The widow, with four generations, all females, constituting the entire posterity of Mr. John HAIR, are still living in Sigourney, Iowa, making in all five generations.
Dr. HAIR attended the common schools until he was nineteen years of age, when he entered Washington College, in Washington County, Pennsylvania, then in charge of the Rev. Dr. McCONAHA, where he was a schoolmate of Hon. James G. BLAINE, and joined him in debate at college societies, where he graduated in 1842, in high standing. He then began the study of medicine in the office of the noted Dr. BIDDLE, of Monongahela City, Pennsylvania, and in the meantime entered the Ohio Medical College, at Cincinnati, where he graduated as a doctor of medicine in 1845. A location for practice was the next question to determine, and finally Fairview, Hancock County, Virginia, was selected, where he remained actively engaged till 1849. He next removed to Hamilton County, Ohio, remaining in Sharonsville and vicinity till 1853. From that place he moved into Butler County, where, with the exception of four years spent in Princeton, Illinois, and an equal time in Franklin County, Indiana, he has since remained. In 1864, while in Indiana, he went out as assistant surgeon of the One Hundredth United States Infantry, serving in that capacity until the close of the war. He was with the army of the Tennessee, under General THOMAS.
Returning to Butler County, he resumed practice, which was continued till 1879, when a new departure in his professional career took place. While in the army he contracted spasmodic asthma, which developed in a few years into an exceedingly severe case. For eleven years there was not a day or night that he did not experience asthmatic paroxysms, and was finally reduced to a mere skeleton. He had, during all these years, been studying the disease carefully, and had made many experiments to ascertain its true nature, the method to alleviate it, and a rational philosophy of cure. But finally, on the 8th of January, 1876, he began treating his case with a remedy which he compounded upon scientific principles, based upon his own observations, study, and experiments. It relieve him immediately, and since the first forty-eight hours succeeding its first application he has not, in a single instance, experienced a recurrence of his malady.
He then began treating other asthmatics, and found that in a very large majority of cases a perfect cure was effected. To test the medicinal powers of his discovery thoroughly, he treated many cases gratuitously all over the country, and the result was that in a short time his medicine met with a general demand, so that in the Spring of 1879, he began the manufacturing of "Dr. HAIR's Asthma Cure" in Hamilton, which was carried on with great success till August, 1881, when the enterprise was removed to Cincinnati under the firm name of HAIR & Son. Until recently Dr. HAIR has supplied his patrons directly, but the demand became so universal that he decided to furnish all druggists instead, by which means a more general distribution of the cure could be effected. It is now known and used all over America, and has been the means of curing thousands of suffering humanity, its discoverer included. Though established but three years, the enterprise is reputed worth upwards of $300,000, of which Dr. HAIR & Son are sole proprietors.
Dr. HAIR was married September 24, 1844, to Miss Margaretta L. HAMILTON, of Florence, Washington County, Pennsylvania, daughter of John and Margaretta HAMILTON of that place, farmers by occupation. Mrs. HAIR died March 4, 1882, leaving three daughters and one son. The oldest is the wife of Virgil GILCHRIST, of Cincinnati, her second husband, and was born August 8, 1844. West Anna, wife of the Rev. T. J. McCLELLAND, of Piqua, Ohio, was born January 25, 1847. James W. was born the 10th of May, 1851, and Margaretta R., wife of Robert COCHRAN, of Millville, Butler County, was born March 4, 1856.
Dr. HAIR is a man of great earnestness and enthusiasm in whatever interests him. In temperance work he has been very active and influential. He has devoted much time and spent much money in organizing and sustaining temperance organizations. His work in this direction has been followed by great good, and reflects great credit on him. In Church work he is no less prominent, being one of the largest supporters of the Presbyterian Church in Hamilton. His benevolence in these particulars are but symbols of his relation towards all worthy enterprises. As an illustration of his zeal and liberality, his action in the recent efforts to enforce the Sunday laws will show. He, upon the first resistance being offered to the law, came forward and sustained Mayor PUTHOFF, and offered to give five hundred dollars, or even one thousand dollars if needed, to enforce the law.
In politics he is an enthusiastic Republican, and never fails to vindicate the principles he espouses. Socially he is genial and hospitable, and with friends self-sacrificing.
On the 11th of September, 1867, the lot on which their house stands was purchased of Thomas MILLIKIN by the pastor, the Rev. G. Z. MECHLING, and Jesse JACOBY, on their individual responsibility. It was afterwards deeded to the congregation, and paid for by them. The lot is on the corner of Ross and Third Streets. It is eighty-six and a half feet by one hundred and sixty feet, fronting on Ross, and cost nine hundred dollars. Mr. MECHLING at once began canvassing the neighboring Churches for means to erect a building, and met with gratifying success. Fourteen hundred dollars were obtained from Seven-Mile, St. Paul, and Millville. Jesse JACOBY obtained some five hundred dollars in Pennsylvania. The Xenia charge gave one hundred, West Alexandria one hundred and thirty-five, and other Churches contributed liberally. On the 11th of June, 1868, ground was staked off and workmen began at the foundation. The cornerstone was laid on the 30th of August. The building was not completed sufficient to occupy until the 19th of Septenmber, 1869. The dedicatory sermon was preached by the Rev. T. P. BUCHER. The church is sixty feet long, thirty-eight feet wide, side walls eighteen feet high, and center of the ceiling twenty-eight feet. It is a very pretty Gothic edifice, the handsomest in town, and cost about eight thousand dollars.
No effort had been made to gather a congregation of size until the church was ready. Yet the body grew slowly. The first year nineteen members were received, the second, four; the third, eight; the fourth, two; the fifth, eleven; the sixth, none; the seventh, eighteen. The whole number of members up to 1876 were seventy-seven, and then appearing on the Church rolls forty-six. Number of members dismissed, seven; deaths, six; removed from the bonds of the congregation, nineteen; disaffected, seven. Up to the present time there have been one hundred and five persons on the list. The Church belongs to the Reformed Church in the United States of America, and is commonly known as the German Reformed. Its standard of faith is in the Heidelberg Catechism, and its government is Presbyterian. In connection with the Church is a flourishing Sunday-school. The Rev. G. Z. MECHLING has been the pastor since the beginning.