Lake County Ohio GenWeb

William F. Post

Research for this sketch was done by Deb Anzelc at Painesville City Cemetery office, and graciously shared for this project. Sources include interment records for W.F. and Eliga Post at Evergreen Cemetery, Obituary (undated) and Funeral notice from The Painesville Telegraph 22 Feb 1917, "Industrial and Trade Edition 1902" from The Painesville Republican Daily and Weekly, 1880 Federal census ED 86, page 21 Sheet 385A Painesville Village, 1900 Federal census ED 60, Sheet 26B Painesville Village, Sanborn Maps Painesville, Ohio November 1892 and January 1889.
Thanks to Georgi Rolan for transcription of the 1915 atlas piece.

Written by Cynthia Turk, 4 July 2005.


William F. Post, 1858-1917

Best known as a Painesville funeral director, William Franklin Post was born May 25, 1858 in St. Catharines, Canada to Benjamin F.(1812-1884) and Catharine (or Kathryn) Johnston (1835-1907) Post. His father was born in New York. His paternal grandfather and grandmother were born in Vermont and Connecticut, respectively. His mother was born in Canada of Irish parentage.

William had a sister, Kate E., two years older than himself who was born in Canada; a sister Mary C., one year younger who was born in New York; sister Mattie five years younger born in Canada; and a brother Thomas M., 9 years younger born in Ohio. (There may have been others, unknown to this author.) Mary C. married Fred H. Rogers. Other brothers-in-law included Rollie Freer and William Linstead.

The family came to Painesville about 1880 from New York. At that time W.F. worked as a clerk in a store. His father had been a merchant. He then opened a livery and ambulance service. He attended two embalming schools, and about 1894 he established the funeral part of his business. He built the brick block on North St. Clair Street in Painesville. The "1902 Trade Edition Directory" published by the Painesville Republican described his business as follows:

He has two fine funeral cars, an ambulance and three fine coaches, having just bought an elegant new coach.

He has fine horses and harnesses, making his turnouts the very best. His assortment of caskets, robes and vaults is the largest and most complete in the city.

William married Eliga (or Elgia) O. Patch, daughter of James A. Patch and Aurelia Taylor Patch. The couple had their first child, Dottie in 1882. She died in 1884, the same year Harry C. was born. Grace L. E. came in 1886 and Mabel P. in 1887. Tragically both Harry and Grace succumbed to diphtheria in 1888 a month apart. Mabel P. Barbour lived to 1982, but had no children.

William and Eliga's first house was on North State St, but later inherited Eliga's maternal grandparents' home in Leroy. The story goes that the family had a maple chest set in the dinning room that came over in a covered wagon from New England to the Western Reserve.

Most funeral homes in the early days were dual businesses. Because casket making was a natural part of furniture making and funeral vehicles were a natural part of the livery business, these two often turned to undertaking. W. F. Post had a successful livery and undertaking business. His brother-in-law had a successful furniture business. The two had a gentlemen's agreement that W. F. Rogers would not enter the funeral and casket business, but apparently he reneged on his word, and they ended up as competitors along with E. D. Keener.

The livery was on the east side of North St. Clair Street north of Main Street, about where the tax drive-through is at the Jobs and Family Services Building. It was next to the old fire house.

New Century Atlas of Lake County Ohio - 1915 Pg 115, col. 1 included the following:

W. F. Post
Undertaking, Funeral Directing and Livery
Painesville, Ohio
St. Clair Street phone 113
Mr. Post is one of the oldest of those engaged in his special line of business, which he established in 1895, and which has prospered under his management. He was born in Chatauqua County, New York, and came with his parents to Painesville in boyhood, where he received his education.

In 1916, Mr. Post served on Painesville City Council, during the reign of Mayor Huntington. This was the time that changing city government to a city manager model was being discussed. When Mr. Post died in 1917 of lobar pneumonia following a cold, his funeral was held from the home, and then the business closed.

His wife, Elgia O. (or Eliga) died in November of 1942. W. F. Post's death notice and funeral notice follow.

WELL KNOWN BUSINESS MAN CALLED BY DEATH

Wm. F. Post Dies at His Home This Morning of Pneumonia.

The many friends of William Franklin Post, the well known business man and councilman of this city, were shocked this morning to learn of his sudden death which occurred at his home on North State street. Mr. Post was taken ill last week with a severe cold. Pneumonia developed, but his condition was not considered dangerous until yesterday. Death came at 1 o;clock this morning.

Mr. Post was 59 years of age. He was born May 25, 1858, in St. Catharines, Canada. He came to this city about 35 years ago and opened an up to date livery and ambulance service. In connection with this, he later established his undertaking department and has met with marked success, having erected the commodious building in which he carried on his work.

Aside from being a prominent business man Mr. Post had been a valuable member of the council in this city, having served in that capacity since January 1st, 1916. Mr. Post was a member of the Odd Fellows, and was also an active member of the Masonic order.

As one of the most widely known business men in this viciity Mr. Post made a large circle of personal friends. As a man of sterling character and lively interest in public affairs, his sudden death will be felt as a distinct loss to the entire community.

Mr. Post is survived by his wife and daughter, Miss Mabel, two sisters, Mrs. William Linstead of Bristol, Connecticut, and Mrs. F. H. Rogers of Painesville, and a brother, T. M. Post of Philadelphia, to whom the sympathy of the entire community is extended.

The funeral services will be held Wednesday afternoon, at 3 o'clock, Eastern time, at the home on N. State street. Burial will be private.

FUNERAL SERVICES FOR W.F. POST HELD YESTERDAY

The funeral services of William Franklin Post were held yesterday afternoon at three o'clock at his home on North State street.

No better evidence of his high standing in the community could be wished for than the throng of people who assembled to pay him their last respects.

After a scriptural reading by Rev. Dieterich, prayer was offered by Rev. Slutz, a former pastor of the Methodist church here, who preached a very comforting funeral sermon, dwelling on the resurrection.

During his sermon Mr. Slutz stated that he received Mr. Post into the church during the time that he was pastor here ten years ago.

Nearly all of this time he has been a member of the official board.

Another evidence of the esteem accorded Mr. Post during his life here was the beautiful flowers which were massed about the casket. A silent but filling testimony.

Final prayer was offered by Rev. Dieterich.

Interment was made at Evergreen cemetery.

Pall bearers--Captain L. B. Cummings, George Morse, Walter Malin, T. L. Peck, W. M. Werner, Bert Payne.

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Last updated 29 July 2005

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