BRAY, Allen Farris, the son of Reuben and Elizabeth (Homer) Bray, was born in Yarmouth, Mass., May 11, 1848. For generations the family resided on Cape Cod, and its members have been sailors, shipbuilders, and ship captains, and were noted for longevity. Allen attended the public schools of his native town until he was fourteen years old, when he became a clerk in a general store in Yarmouth, but soon went to Brewster, Mass., where he obtained a similar situation, which he retained until 1868, when his father died. He then returned home and settled his father's estate. In 1869 he came to Central Falls and was employed by Isaac F. Crocker for eight years. In 1877 he purchased the store of George A. Mumford, under the Gazette and Chronicle's office, in the Manchester block, at 25 North Main street. In 1879 he bought out the business of the Charles M. Read Co., at 86 Main street, and conducted it in connection with his North Main street store; but in 1883 he removed the stock from the latter establishment to the old Read store, where he remained until 1889, when the business was removed to its present commodious quarters in the Benedict House building, at 305 Main and 10 Broad streets. In 1879 he took his brother Ferdinand, into partnership, and the style of the firm became A. F. & F. Bray. The house carries a general line of hardware, mechanics' tools and farming implements, and also deals in firearms, ammunition, fishing tackle, seeds, etc. Mr. Bray was a charter member of the Pawtucket Business Men's Association. He was married in 1884 to Etta Louise Standing of Fall River, and they have three children, Homer Standing, b. May 29, 1886; Louise Whitfield, b. Sept. 19, 1889; Allen Farris, Jr., b. Nov. 29, 1893.
BRAY, Ferdinand, a son of Reuben and Elizabeth (Homer) Bray, was born in Yarmouth, Mass., April 21, 1859. His father died in 1869, but his mother lived until 1896. Ferdinand attended the public schools of his native town until he was twelve years old. In 1872 he came with his mother and sisters to live in Central Falls, whither his brother Allen F. Bray had preceded him about three years. For three years he went to school in Central Falls, and then engaged as a salesman with the hardware house of Belcher Bros. of Providence, July 19, 1874, where he remained until he went to work for his brother as a clerk in the hardware business. In 1879 he became a partner in the firm, which then took the present name of A. F. & F. Bray, and is now one of the largest houses in this line of business in the state of Rhode Island. Mr. Bray joined Company F, 2d Battalion Cavalry, which position he holds at present. He is an associate member of Tower Post, No. 17, G. A. R., and belongs to the Business Men's Association and the Garfield Club. Mr. Bray belongs to the following Masonic bodies: Union Lodge, No. 10, A. F. and A. M., Pawtucket; Pawtucket Royal Arch Chapter No. 4; Pawtucket Council No. 2, Royal and Select Masters; Holy Sepulchre Commandery, K. T., No. 8, Pawtucket; Rhode Island Consistory, A. and A., Scottish Rite, Providence; and also the Queen Esther Chapter, Order of the Eastern Star No. 2, Pawtucket, and Palestine Temple, A. A. O. N., Mystic Shrine, Providence. He was married to Mary T., daughter of John T. Cottrell, Sept. 20, 1887, and they have had four children: Gertrude Cottrell, b. Sept. 22, 1888; Florence Allen, b. April 3, 1892; Reuben Thurston, b. Nov. 11, 1893, d. May 1, 1895; Ferdinand Bray, Jr., b. May 11, 1896.
BRIGGS, Hiram Augustus, the third son of Hiram Augustus and Almira (Harris) Briggs, was born in Pawtucket, Jan. 4, 1841, in the old red house that occupied that site west of where the Evans and Deacon building now stands on Main street, and overhanging it was the famous old mulberry tree. His father was born in Coventry, R. I., commenced life in a very humble way, but in 1846 he associated himself with Alexander King under the firm name of Briggs & King, dealers in cotton waste, on the corner of Exchange and Depot streets. In 1848 Mr. King retired, when Mr. Briggs' brother Russell entered into partnership with him, and the firm name became H. A. Briggs & Co. Russell Briggs died in 1868, but the old firm name has since been retained. Mr. Briggs was a man of indefatigable energy and perseverance, and through his foresight and persistent industry became wealthy. He was straightforward in all his dealings and was a man of sterling integrity and honesty. He died in Germany in 1877, aged 64. His son, Hiram A., was educated at the Church Hill school, Pawtucket, at the Barre Academy, Barre, Vt., and took a commercial course at Scholfield's Commercial College in Providence. For four years, beginning May 1, 1860, he acted as clerk in his father's office at a salary of $5.00 per week, but his board only cost $2.50. In 1864 he was admitted into the business as a partner with one fourth interest. From the income thus derived, he purchased a half interest with his father. Shortly after his father's death he became sole owner, and has since conducted the business alone.
He is a member of the Business Men's Association, a director of the Pacific Bank, and is a director and member of the executive committee of the American Yarn Manufacturing Co. He has attended the First Universalist church for 30 years, and served on the board of trustees for fifteen years. Nov. 1, 1865, he was married to Emily Gleason Dean of Attleboro, Mass., who was born April 28, 1840, and died Feb. 20, 1883. By this union there is one child: Charles Augustus, b. Sept. 20, 1872, who is now in the office with his father.
BROOKS, William James, was born in Hopeville, Conn., March 1, 1836, and was the fourth child of George and Marian Hamilton (Murdock) Brooks, who came to this country from Scotland early in the century. He attended school in his native town, and also in Jewett City, Conn., and Philadelphia, Pa., and completed his education at the Plainfield, Conn., Academy. He was then apprenticed to a cigar manufacturer in Centerville, R. I., and worked as a journeyman until he was twenty-one years of age. In June, 1857, he enlisted for five years in the United States Army in the ordinance department at Bridgesburg Arsenal, Pa., and accompanied the Utah expedition to Salt Lake City, where he participated in the Utah troubles and actively engaged in Indian warfare. He has honorably discharged, having attained the rank of sergeant. At the expiration of his time he went to California and worked in mines, returning by Panama to Providence, where he worked at his trade for different concerns until 1871, when he became foreman for Squire Z. Phinney, the well-known cigar manufacturer, and has continued in this capacity for the past twenty-five years. Mr. Brooks is a Republican. He attends St. Paul's Episcopal church, is an Odd Fellow, and is Commander of General N. A. Miles, Garrison No. 7, of Providence, of the Regular Army and Navy Union. He was married to Mary E. Blanchard of Providence, May 31, 1870, and they have five children: Ellen I., b. Sept. 17, 1871; Marian H., b. Jan. 30, 1874; Harriet E., b. March 29, 1876; William F., b. Oct. 25, 1882; Herbert H., b. Nov. 14, 1884.
BROWN, James S., the son of Sylvanus Brown, became one of the foremost manufacturers of cotton machinery in the United States. He was born in the village of Pawtucket, North Providence, Dec. 23, 1802, in a low gambrel-roofed house that stood on Quaker Lane, - afterwards Pleasant street - on the site now occupied by 42 and 43 East avenue. The house was built by Sylvanus Brown, and after his death came into the possession of his son. It was moved years ago to a location on Marrin street, between Pine and George streets, and still stands, changed in appearance. In its rear in the original location stood the little shop where the elder Brown made the patterns for Samuel Slater's first machinery and which subsequently formed the northerly portion of the old Weeden bakery. When the bakery was remodeled, Capt. Brown procured the frame of the old shop and removed it to his yard. It was in this old house on Pleasant street that Sylvanus Brown died in Pawtucket, July 24, 1824. Philip, grandfather of James S., was descended from one of four brothers who emigrated from Wales and settled in the town of Cumberland, R. I. There they engaged in mining coal and iron ore, and the business was inherited by Philip and carried on by him until his death, when it was abandoned. The site of one of the furnaces was near the present gate house of the Pawtucket water works at the mouth of the Abbott Run, and in excavating for the foundation of that structure a number of timbers of the old furnace were exhumed.
James went to school in North Providence until he was fifteen years of age, when he entered the employ of David Wilkinson, whose machine shop was then in the basement of the Oziel Wilkinson stone mill, rear of Mill street. He learned the business of pattern-making, having during his school vacations assisted his father on that branch of woodwork. In 1819 he went to work in the machine shop of Pitcher & Gay, which was started in 1813, on Main streets on or near the site of the 'New Mill' and afterwards removed to the 'Stone Mill' on the opposite side of the river, and subsequently to the adjoining 'Yellow' now the 'Bridge mill'. It was then the largest concern of its kind in the place. Mr. Gay retired in 1824 and Mr. Brown succeeded to his place and interest in the firm, the name being changed to Pitcher & Brown. In 1842 Mr. Brown purchased his partner's interest and continued business on the same premises until 1850.
The slide rest used on turning lathes by which the height of the tool can be adjusted while the lathe is in motion, was invented by Mr. Brown while in the employ of Pitcher & Gay, in 1820. In 1830 he invented a machine for cutting level gears. In 1838 he patented a machine for boring the passage for roving through the arm of the long flyer roving machine, and in 1842 his lathe for longitudinally turning bodies of irregular forms was patented.
After the introduction of the celebrated Sharp & Roberts patent self-acting mule into this country, Mr. Brown turned his attention to their manufacture, and in building these machines acquired a reputation second to no machinist in the United States. These mules were first introduced into the United States by Major Bradford Durfee, of Fall River, Mass., in the year 1839-40. Major Durfee was the agent for the Annawan cotton mill at Fall River, and visited Europe on business connected with this company. While in England he purchased of Sharp & Roberts six of their mule head stocks. They were shipped to some port in France whence they were reshipped to this country and forwarded to Mr. Durfee at Fall River. From Fall River they were sent to Pitcher & Brown at Pawtucket, who put them together and they were successfully operated in the mills in Fall River. The first Sharp & Roberts self-operating mules made in this country were built by Pitcher & Brown for S. B. & H. Chace, of Valley Falls. Mr. Brown applied himself with great diligence to perfecting and simplifying the work on this mule invention, making many new and ingenious tools for the purpose.
The castings used by him in his works were procured from the foundry of General Shepard Leach, in Easton, Mass., up to 1847. In that year he bought three and a half acres of land on Main street, on which he erected a foundry 40 by 80 feet, and made his first castings there Dec. 31, 1847. In 1849 he erected a large brick machine shop 400 feet long, 60 feet wide and two and one-half stories in height, with a large wing containing a powerful steam engine. Having decided to build, but not finding in the market such bricks as he required, he purchased Bucklin's island, in Pawtucket river, which consisted of a fine bed of clay and manufactured his own bricks. His shop was built entirely of these bricks. The house in the corner of the yard, next to the premises of W. H. Haskell & Co., was moved from Bucklin's island to its present location about 1852, and was towed to the wharf from the island on two scows. The master mason of the large machine shop was Capt. Israel Lee. In 1859 a substantial pattern house, 40 x 72 feet, 2 1/2 stories above the basement, was built, and several other smaller buildings, for various uses, all so conveniently arranged and admirably adapted to their several purposes as to make this one of the largest and most complete establishments of its kind in the country. The tools in this establishment were nearly all of them built by Mr. Brown and for many of them he obtained patents.
The Sharp & Roberts mule, and the long flyer speeder, were the only cotton manufacturing machines which Mr. Brown had built for several years before the war of the rebellion. When the English fly-frame was being generally introduced, he was urged by many manufacturers to built that machine for them; but he steadily refused to do so, with a firmness that seemed to them almost like obstinacy, insisting upon it that they were not what manufacturers of cotton wanted, and that the American long-flyer roving machine could be rendered far superior to the English fly-frame. He turned his attention to the improvement of the American speeder. After careful study and many experiments, he succeeded in accomplishing the desired result, and took out a patent for his improvement in January, 1857. The result fully verified the correctness of his opinion. Almost from the time that he took out his patent for his improvements, the demands of manufacturers compelled him to abandon the building of mules, and to turn the whole force of his shop to the construction of his patent speeder. Mr. Brown's improved lathe for longitudinally turning bodies or irregular forms was designed for making cotton machinery rolls, but after the outbreak of the war it was found to be well adapted for the manufacture of muskets. As a result, during the war his large establishment was engaged in making tools and machines for turning gun-barrels, giving employment to about 300 men.
Subsequent to 1862 Mr. Brown built the machines for the American File Works and put them in successful operation. He also invented a machine for grinding file-blanks, and a furnace for hardening files. After the close of the war, he manufactured the so-called Parke, Curtis & Madley mule, and English machine, which met with much favor among manufacturers. In this mule he made important and valuable improvements for which he secured patents. In the latter part of his life he was much interested in manufacture of malleable iron, for which he constructed a foundry near his machine shop, at great expense.
When Mr. Brown was about six years old he met with an accident which nearly destroyed the sight of one eye. About 1874 his unimpaired eye became affected and he underwent a useless operation towards its improvement. But the eye injured when a youth, strange to say, allowed him to dimly distingiush forms and night from day. It is thought that the intense heat encountered daily in this malleable iron furnace was the cause of his final blindness, as he would remain for hours with the strong white heat from the furnace thrown full upon his optics. He enjoyed, till near the end of his life, the most robust health, which had never been impaired by luxurious indulgence or foolish excesses, and he died Dec. 29, 1879, at the age of 77.
Mr. Brown was energetic, prudent, industrious and perfectly temperate. His tools and machinery were built regardless of cost, to do good work. He was not a public man. He did not seek or accept any kind of public office. He had enlightened views and positive opinions upon all questions of political, social and moral interest; but was not given to intermeddling in the management of affairs outside of his domestic and business relations. He was kind-hearted and between him and many of his old employees there existed tender and harmonious relations. Eschewing entirely political and public preferment he devoted himself wholly to his business. His daily journeys to and from the shop were as regular as those of the sun, and his florid countenance and stout frame made him a conspicuous figure on the street. In politics he was a staunch Whig and Republican. The war aroused his patriotism to a high pitch, and he contributed liberally towards arming and equipping the soldiers. In April, 1861, he erected a flagstaff near his works and flung a splendid flag to the breeze.
Mr. Brown was married Feb. 23, 1829, to Sarah P. Gridley, a sister of Benjamin Gridley who owned the old house on the corner of Main and Wing streets. They lived in the old house on Pleasant street until 1835, when they removed to the new mansion house on Walcott street, then just completed. Here Mr. Brown resided the rest of his life. Three of his children were born in the old house: Agnes (who died young), Abby G. (Mrs. Thomas K. King), and Mary D. (Mrs. Charles A. Warland), and James the only son and youngest child was born in the house on Walcott street.
BROWN, James, son of James S., and grandson of Sylvanus Brown, was born in Pawtucket, Mass., Dec. 18, 1838, in his father's mansion house on Walcott street. He attended the public schools of Pawtucket until he was eighteen years old when he entered Lyon & Frize's University Grammer [sic] school, Providence, from which he was graduated in 1858. He then learned to be a machinist in his father's shop, and continued to work there until he succeeded to the business on the death of his father in 1879. Since then he has carried on the large machine shops and has followed worthily in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. In politics Mr. Brown has been an ardent Republican. He represented the fourth ward in the common council from 1888 to 1892, was president of the council from 1889 to 1891, and mayor of the city in 1893. He belongs to the Pawtucket Business Men's Association, and is a member of the St. Paul's Episcopal church. May 1864 he was married to Susan A. Aldrich of Uxbridge, Mass., by which union there are three children: Ruth S., Alice J., and James S.
BURROW, William Trubee, the manager of the Glenlyon Dyeworks, Saylesville, was born in Leeds, England in 1839, and was educated at a private school in Halifax, England. His father, John Burrow, was successively manager of the dye works of Thomas Haigh & Sons, dyers, Leeds; then for 20 years for Joseph Moxem Kirk, Halifax, England, and later for Oates, Ingham & Sons of Bradford. When fourteen years of age William T. became clerk in the office of Joseph Moxem Kirk. He mastered the business so thoroughly that when nineteen years old he was promoted by Mr. Kirk to be manager of the branch works at Bowling, Bradford, which position he held for six years. In 1864 he became assistant manager of the main plant of the Kirks, one of the largest concerns in England. Later he was engaged as manager of William Dodd & Co., Manchester, in the finishing of cotton fabrics. The death of Mr. Dodd caused him to accept an engagement to assist James Haywood of Sackville street, Manchester, in perfecting an improved self-acting clip tenter, with Mather & Platt of Salford. After this was brought out he went to Oates, Ingham & Sons to assist his father who was general manager, where he stayed about three years, and then accepted an engagement with John Bottrell & Co. of Leeds, dyers and finishers. Two years later he went back to Oates, Ingham & Co., to take charge of the crabbing and singeing departments. This position he filled until the year 1873, when he and his father were given an interest in the business of S. & L. Margerison, Bradford, piece and yarn dyers. His father became general manager, but died soon after entering upon his duties as such, and William T. succeeded to the position, which he held until 1879. May, 1880, he engaged with the New York Dyeing and Printing Co. In the year 1882 he took charge of the finishing and dyeing departments of the Arlington Mills, Lawrence, Mass. In the fall of 1883 he became manager of the Glenlyon Dyeworks at Saylesville, for W. F. & F. C. Sayles. The works were then in their infancy. He held that position since then, and under his management the plant has been greatly developed. Mr. Burrow is a member of the Sayles Memorial Chapel Congregational Church, and acted as choir master for 12 years for church and Sunday school. He is a member of Union Lodge of Masons, Pawtucket. In his youth Mr. Burrow was a member of the Third West Yorkshire Rifle Volunteers. In 1861 he was married to Janet Gunn of Sunderland, England. They have no issue, but have three adopted children.
BUTLER, Richard Archer, only child of William and Mary J. (Jones) Butler, was born in Norfolk, Va., Jan. 6, 1854. He attended school in his native city until he was fifteen years old. In 1869 he came to Attleboro, Mass., worked on a farm and went to school winters. As he was ambitious and desirous of advancement in the world he saved sufficient money from his scanty earnings to enable him to obtain a good commercial education at Bryant & Stratton's Business College in Providence. In 1873 he began to learn the carpenter's trade but abandoned this to start the milk business in 1875, which he disposed of with profit in October, 1879, when he bought out the interest of William Orr in the Star Tanning Co., then located in the Fairbrother and Wood building, corner High and Blackstone streets, Central Falls, and became a partner with William Goulding and Jonas Welcome. Afterward Robert Bellew became a partner and Mr. Welcome withdrew. In 1882 Mr. Butler sold to Oscar Jillson his interest in the Star Tanning Co. The company moved out of the Fairbrother and Wood building which Mr. Butler had leased. He bought the building in 1885. Here until 1895 he carried on tanning and currying, and manufactured belt, lacing, Dongola and fancy leather. Mr. Butler is a member of the Central Falls Veteran Firemen's Assocation. In politics he is a Republican, and was a member of the Lincoln Republican Association.
illustration on page 261: photo, Richard A. Butler, tanner, currier and leather manufacturer.
CARMICHAEL, George Alexander, the oldest son of George and Abby Sanford (Thomas) Carmichael, was born in North Stonington, Conn., Dec. 22, 1869. His grandfather, George Carmichael, was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1802, came to America when a young man, and settled in Hopkinton, R. I. He died at Shannock, R. I., in 1888. His son, also named George Carmichael, was born in Scotland, Nov. 22, 1838, has been a successful woolen manufacturer at Shannock and Westerly, represented the towns of Richmond, and Charlestown, R. I., in the General Assembly, for many years both in the house and senate, and was Presidential elector in 1884. Mr. Carmichael prepared the way, by means of various resolutions he introduced in the general assembly, for the establishment of the Rhode Island Soldiers' Home at Bristol. He is a man of more than ordinary force and character, has always been one of the ablest and most respected leaders of the Republican party in the state, and has served on many boards, commissions, and other public capacities.
George A., the third of the name, attended the public schools of Westerly, R. I., and completed his schooling at Scholfield's Commercial College, Providence, from which he was graduated when eighteen years old. He was then employed for two years in the office of the Carmichael Manufacturing Co., Westerly. Since then he has been connected with the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad in various office positions, and at present is freight cashier and chief clerk in the freight department at Pawtucket. He is a man of liberal views, tolerant and progressive. In politics he is a Republican, and has been a member of the state central committee for one year. In religion he is a liberal, and is an attendant of the Bell street chapel, Providence, Rev. Anna Garlin Spencer, pastor. He is a young man of a fine physical presence, is genial and companionable, is a capable accountant, and resembles his father in his character and attainments. Mr. Carmichael is a Free Mason, and belongs to St. John's Lodge and to Providence Royal Arch Chapter, and also to St. John's Commandery of Providence.
CAPRON, George Oliver, manager City Coal Co., Pawtucket, is of the seventh generation of his family in America. The first American Capron was Banfield, who came from England about 1674, when 14 years of age, with three other youths as stowaways. Their presence placed the captain of the vessel in a peculiar predicament as he was prohibited from carrying any British subjects to America unless they were provided with a license permitting them to leave the country. He determined to return at once to port and surrender the four youths to the authorities, but upon the protest of the mate and crew concluded to proceed on the voyage. It was thus the first Capron arrived in New England.
James Holden, the author of the genealogy of the Capron family, thinks the name French and not English, and is supported in this view by the absence of any coat of arms or heraldic record of this family in English heraldry. It is possible that the Caprons were originally French and may have fled from that country to England during one of the then frequent periods of religious persecution. There is no record of Banfield Capron's movements or occupation for seventeen years after his arrival in America. He married the daughter of Mr. Callender at Rehoboth, Mass., and settled in what is now the town of Barrington, where he remained about twenty years, when he sold his farm to a Mr. Humphrey and moved into Attleboro, then a densely wooded country, where he secured a larger farm. Here he remained until his death, which occurred Aug. 20, 1752. He is described as being of medium height, strongly built, of light complexion, with blue eyes and light hair with a reddish tinge. He retained his vitality to the last, though he lived to be 92 years of age. He was married three times: first to the Callender spoken of above; second, to Elizabeth Blackington of Attleboro, Mass., who d. May 10, 1735; third, to Sarah, widow of Deacon John Daggett of Attleboro, Mass., Dec. 16, 1735. He had 12 children: Banfield, Joseph, Edward, Walter, John, Betsey, Jonathan, Mary, Hannah, Margaret, Sarah and a daughter, name unknown. The line of descent is through
Banfield Jr. (2) born in Attleboro, Mass., July 16, 1683. He was married twice, first, to Hannah, daughter of Nathaniel Jenks, of Pawtucket, R. I., and granddaughter of Governor Jenks. She d. 1738. His second wife was Sarah Brown of Attleboro, Mass., who he married in Feb. 1744. He probably moved to Rhode Island, as in the Cumberland records it is stated that he was chosen a grand juror in 1748, 'to attend at ye next Inferior Court to be holden at Providence ye 3d Tuesday of this June.' He d. Aug. 16, 1752, in his 70th year. He had 12 children, Nathaniel, Charles, Philip, b. Feb. 1, 1719-20, Benjamin, Jonathan, Hannah, Betsey, Lydia, Oliver, Leah, Sarah, and Elizabeth. The line of descent is through the second child,
Charles, (3) who was b. in October, 1716, was married to Mary, daughter of Joseph Scott of Bellingham, Mass., Dec. 16, 1742, and the ceremony was performed by his uncle, William Arnold, Justice of the Peace. He was distinguished in public affairs and held various public offices, and d. May 9, 1789, in his 73d year. He had a large family all of whom lived until the youngest had attained her fiftieth year. The names of the children were: Hannah, b. in Bellingham, Mass., Philip, Phebe, b. in Cumberland, R. I., Charles, Jr., Joseph, Mary, Nathaniel, Lydia, b. Aug. 31, 1755, (married Elisha Bosworth) d. 1841, John, Jemima, and Grace. The line of descent is through
Philip, (4) second child of Charles and Mary (Scott) Capron, who was born at Bellingham, Mass., May 9, 1745, married Priscilla, daughter of Joseph and Mary Tillson, Nov. 8, 1772, and d. July 27, 1821, aged 77 years. He was the author of a most interesting history of the Capron family, written in 1817 when in his 73d year. At that time he resided in Cumberland, and died there. He had accumulated a large fortune, was a man of culture and great natural abilities, and was very active and prominent in public affairs, having been elected to many positions of trust, both local and state. His wife d. Nov. 2, 1835. They had ten children: Prusha, b. Oct. 6, 1773; Silas, b. May 16, 1775; Patience, b. May 22, 1777; William, b. Aug. 27, 1779; Sarah, b. Nov. 14, 1781; Nancy, b. Oct. 20, 1783; John, b. Aug. 2, 1785; Oliver, b. April 10, 1787; Lemuel, b. May 27, 1789; and Seth, b. Aug. 24, 1791. The line of descent is though
Oliver (5), eighth child of Philip and Priscilla, who was married to Silence Harding of Cumberland, R. I., May 20, 1810. They had eight children: Newton, b. March 28, 1812; Mary Ann, b. July 24, 1814, d. Aug. 29, 1843; Elias Smith, b. June 27, 1816, d. April 6, 1847; Augonette, b. Oct. 20, 1818, d. Sept. 25, 1851; Julia Ann, b. July 15, 1822, d. March 21, 1847; Lucyida, b. Aug. 16, 1825, d. Jan. 10, 1843; Stafford Scott, b. June 13, 1826; and Sanford Taft, b. Oct. 14, 1828.
Newton (6), the oldest son of the preceding, was married to Caroline Cornelia, daughter of George Allen Gilmore, and Sally Lovett Sherburn. He was a mill superintendent and engaged for some time in the lumber business in the south. In 1858 he was the victim of an accident which caused the loss of both legs, but he survived this for many years and died Oct. 19, 1875.
George Oliver (7) the only child of Newton and Caroline (Cornelia) Capron, was born in Franklin, Mass., Sept. 16, 1856. When he was two years old his parents removed to Lonsdale, R. I., and there he obtained his early education. He graduated from the high school and completed his studies at Bryant & Stratton's Business College, Providence. His first occupation was in the wholesale grocery house of Whitford & Saunders in Providence, where he remained five years, leaving to accept a position in the cotton manufactory of Littlefield Bros., Pawtucket. On the organization of the City Coal Co., in 1889, he accepted the general management and still occupies that position. May 26, 1887, he was married to Annie Walton, daughter of E. S. Mason, of Pawtucket, by which union there are two children, Edith Mason, b. Dec. 7, 1888, and Edmund Bishop, b. Sept. 21, 1894.
CARPENTER, Everett Payson, the second son of Sumner and Mary Ann (Goodhue) Carpenter, was born in Pawtucket, R. I., June 16, 1834, and was educated in the public schools. When fifteen years of age he began to learn the jewelers' trade, but the acids used for soldering injured his eyes, so that he was obliged to abandon it. When 18 years of age he engaged as a clerk in the house furnishing establishment of C. M. Hubbard & CO., of Manchester, N. H. with the experience thus obtained he returned to Pawtucket and in 1858 established himself in business in a small way in company with Jesse Cudworth, under the name of Cudworth, Carpenter & Co., in the Carrique and Allen building on the east side of the river. The building is still standing on Main street and is used by the Dexter Yarn Co. for storing cotton. His entire stock was not valued at more than $10,000, if so much, and the floor space required to display his goods was 12,000 square feet. The amount of business transacted annually was $25,000. This is a good showing when the population and surroundings are considered, but compared with the mammoth establishment of to-day it sinks into utter insignificance. The amount of floor space at present required in display of goods is more than one acre and the cash value of the business annually amounts to $175,000.
In 1869, when Mr. Carpenter's brother Herbert S. was admitted to partnership, the firm name was changed to the present title of E. P. Carpenter Co. The house is now the largest in its line in Pawtucket as an emporium for all kinds of house furnishing goods, and will compare favorably with similar establishments in the large cities.
Mr. Carpenter is a director in the Pacific National Bank. He has been a member of the Pawtucket Business Men's Association since its organization. For many years he has been a member of the First Baptist church, is treasurer of the Pawtucket Dispensary, and occupies many important positions in connection with church work. Oct. 4, 1855, he was married to Sarah J. Smith of Manchester, N. H., and they have had three children, Edward Judson, Burnside Lincoln, and Frank Everett, who all died in infancy.
The Carpenter family is one of the oldest in New England, and traces its ancestry in America back to 1638, to William Carpenter, one of the first settlers of Rehoboth. Many of Everett P.'s forefathers are buried in the Mineral Spring cemetery, Pawtucket, and in the old Seekonk graveyard.
CARPENTER, George Ansel, the city engineer of Pawtucket, is a descendant in the ninth generation from William Carpenter, who was one of the company of people that came from Weymouth, Mass., in 1644 with the Rev. Samuel Newman and settled Rehoboth. This William Carpenter was not, however, the head of the family at that time, as he with his wife Abigail and four children and his father, also named William, had come from England in the ship Bevis in 1638 and settled in Weymouth. The family has always been prominent in Rehoboth and Attleboro, and many of its members have attained distinction in state and national affairs. The line of descent to George A. is: William, the son of the first settler of Rehoboth, his son Nathaniel and grandson Dan, who were all born in Rehoboth. The son of the latter was Ezekiel, born in Attleboro, as were his son Dan, and his grandson Ansel. The latter was born Oct. 17, 1800, in the old homestead on the east bank of the Blackstone river, which still stands near the site now occupied by the Home Bleach & Dye Works, within the limits of the town of Attleboro. He was town sergeant of the towns of North Providence and Pawtucket and city messenger of Pawtucket from 1855 until his death, Sept. 22, 1891. His son, George Albert Carpenter, was married to Lydia Clark Gage, and their only child was George Ansel Carpenter, who was born in Pawtucket, March 4, 1864. He obtained his education in the public schools of Pawtucket and was graduated from the high school July 2, 1883. He immediately entered the employ of D. Lawrence Wilkinson, a civil engineer practicing in Pawtucket. In 1886, upon the incorporation of the city of Pawtucket, Mr. Wilkinson was elected city engineer and Mr. Carpenter was associated with him as first assistant until Aug. 1888, when he was engaged by the board of sewer commissioners of Lincoln, R. I., as their engineer. He remained in the employ of the town of Lincoln, making plans for and superintending the construction of sewers until March 1, 1891, when he assumed the position of city engineer of Pawtucket to which he had been elected by the city council in February. This position Mr. Carpenter still holds, having been re-elected in 1892-3-4-5-6. Jan. 5, 1888, he was married to Jennie Smith Shepardson, and two children have been born to them: Gladys Randall, b. July 8, 1889; and Margaret Allyn, b. Feb. 1, 1895. Mr. Carpenter is a member of various Masonic bodies and of the Boston Society of Civil Engineers.
illustration on page 266: photo, George A. Carpenter, city engineer, Pawtucket.
CARPENTER, Isaac B., was born in Pawtucket, Nov. 1, 1866, and is the son of William S. and Lydia (Leonard) Carpenter. The Carpenter family is one of the oldest in this country, and the founder of this branch came to America in 1650. Isaac attended the public schools of Pawtucket until he was 14 years of age. He then worked for the Lyons Delany Co. for six months, after which he was an operator for the Providence Telephone Co. for four years. At the end of that time he became inspector at the Pawtucket Telephone Exchange, continued as such for five years, and in 1894 was promoted to be manager. The Pawtucket exchange was established in 1876; at present its territory extends to Woonsocket. When Mr. Carpenter began his work as inspector in Pawtucket there were only 200 subscribers, but from that time they increased continuously until on July 1, 1896, the number was 701. The telephone office is at present at 210 Main street, but the company is now erecting a commodious building on High street, specially designed for the business, and it will be furnished and ready for occupancy early in the spring of 1897. Mr. Carpenter is an enthusiastic Republican. He is a Free Mason, and also an Odd Fellow. He is an alert, active public-spirited young man, with safe and conservative instincts, and is certain to make his influence felt in the future.
CARPENTER, Charles Edmund, a member of the well known firm of architects, Stone, Carpenter & Willson, Providence, was born in Pawtucket, Mass., May 1, 1845, the son of Asa E. Carpenter and Hetty A. (Arnold) Carpenter, and a lineal descendant of William Carpenter who came to this country from England in 1638 in the ship 'Bevis'. His early education was obtained in the public schools of Pawtucket, and after leaving the high school he entered the office of William S. Haines, civil engineer, with the intention of adopting that profession. After three years in this pursuit he believed that the profession of architecture would better suit his tastes, and he commenced its study, entering the office of Alfred Stone in March, 1868, as draughtsman. In this profession he made such progress that in 1873 he was admitted to partnership, the firm name being Stone & Carpenter. About this time he was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, of which body he is still a member. He has spent much time in Europe in the study of its architecture. In 1883 Edmund R. Willson became a partner and the style was changed to Stone, Carpenter & Willson, who are now considered the leading architects in Rhode Island.
The firm has designed some of the finest public buildings and business blocks in Providence and elsewhere in Rhode Island, as well as in other states. Among these buildings are the Rhode Island State Prison and State Almshouse; the Pettaconsett and Hope Pumping Stations, Providence water works; Providence County Court House; Hotel Dorrance, Providence Telephone building, Gymnasium and Slater halls at Brown University, Industrial Trust building, Lauderdale building, Francis building, Central Public Library, Union Railroad Station, Providence Public Library, Providence Institution for Savings, and many others in Providence and vicinity. In Pawtucket the Music Hall building, Pacific National Bank building, Wheaton building, and many of the finest residences have been built from the firm's designs.
In 1862, while yet a pupil in the Pawtucket high school, Mr. Carpenter with a number of his schoolfellows enlisted in Co. H, 9th Regiment, Rhode Island Volunteers, recruited principally from the Pawtucket Light Guard, and went to the front under the command of Capt. Henry F. Jenks, serving the three months term of enlistment. He is a member of the Providence Art Club, and the To Kalon Club of Pawtucket. In 1894 he married Eudora C. Sheldon, daughter of Gilbert Sheldon of Providence.
CARROLL, Hugh J., is of the second generation of his family in America. His father, Hugh Carroll, came from Ireland to America in 1832, but then remained only a short time. He returned in 1849 and settled in Warwick, R. I. Hugh J. was born in the village of Lippitt, Oct. 29, 1854, and was the eleventh child of Hugh and Ann (McElhaney) Carroll. He attended the public schools, studied in Niagara College, N. Y., and completed his education at St. Laurent College, P. Q., Canada. He read law in the office of Sayles & Greene of Providence, and was admitted to the bar August 27, 1877. He commenced practice in Pawtucket the following year. In public affairs Mr. Carroll has taken an active and prominent part. He has served the city and state in various capacities. He was town solicitor and served several terms in the lower house of the state legislature, during which time he introduced and secured passage of the ten-hour bill. In 1889 he was elected mayor of Pawtucket and his administration was characterized by efficiency and progressiveness. He was active in promoting the celebration of the Cotton Centennial in 1890, and secured appropriations amounting to $23,000 from the state and city for that purpose. He advocated improvements, and during his administration Walcott street was opened, widened and extended to the plains, greatly facilitating communication with the center of the city. Among other improvements which he urged (some of which have been made) was the widening of Main street and the bridge (which will soon be accomplished), lengthening Division street by bridging Hammond's pond, and extending the street car system, making much better connections with the east side of the city, improving Pawtucket avenue to the city line and widening of Broad street at the railroad crossing. He also advocated the erection of a new city hall. He was wielded a large influence on the policy of the Democratic party in this state, having served for 19 years on the state central committee, two years of which he was chairman.
Mr. Carroll is a member of the Catholic Knights and of the Seekonk Club. May 10, 1880, he was married to Sarah M. Warburton, of Phenix, R. I., by which union there are four children, Bertha, Alice, Sarah and Ann.
CASE, Samuel Otterson, Jr., was born in the town of Rehoboth, Mass., Dec. 24, 1832, and is the son of Samuel O. and Sarah (Hicks) Case. He moved with his parents to Seekonk, Mass., in 1836. At the age of fifteen he learned to be a mason with his father at East Providence, R. I., in what was then Seekonk. When eighteen years old he became a clerk at Lebanon village, in a grocery and dry goods store conducted by his father, and continued in that place and occupation for three years. In 1854 he returned to Seekonk, and worked at his trade for a short time. He then returned to Lebanon and opened a store on his own account as a dealer in general groceries, flour and grain. Success attended his endeavors, and he has ever since continued to transact the principal business of the locality in these lines. Indeed his store is a centre of supply for a wide radius of farming country in Seekonk, Rehoboth and Pawtucket. For nine years Mr. Case was a deputy sheriff in Bristol County, Mass., and has held many minor offices in the town of Seekonk, Mass. In the spring of 1855 he married Harriet E., the only daughter of Daniel B. and Hannah Cooper of Seekonk. His father, who was born in Rehoboth, Dec. 25, 1807, is still living, hale and hearty. His mother, also born in Rehoboth, May 1, 1808, died in 1891.
CATTANACH, Donald D., artist, inventor and chemist, son of Duncan and Mary (Macdonald) Cattanach, came to this country in the 18th year of his age. He was born in the Highlands of Scotland, and spent his childhood there, obtaining his primary education in the schools of his native land. At the age of twelve years he was sent to London to finish his education. The Cattanach family is one of the most noted in the history of the Scottish Highlands. Upon his father's side Donald D. is a lineal descendant of 'The Cattanach', 'Cat of the Mountain', an independent Scottish chief of valor and renown of the Clan Chattan, - and on his mother's side is a descendant of the chief of the Camerons of Lochiel. His mother's ancestor was Macdonald, chief of the Clan Glengarry, who was captured at the battle of Culloden in 1746, and with many others of the defeated army was afterwards executed. After completing his academic studies in London, Mr. Cattanach began life as a chemist, and at once developed great inventive ability.
As a chemist he holds high rank, having studied and experimented in every branch of the science of chemistry. Before leaving London he invented a continuous process for the manufacture of pyroligneous acid, wood spirit, creosote and carbon for gunpowder. This process he brought to the United States in 1855 and sold to a man in Georgia. He then began the manufacture of hydrofluoric acid for the embossing and decorating of glass, and developed this branch of industry very extensively.
At the beginning of the late civil war Mr. Cattanach was employed by the members of the Marine Artillery of Providence to instruct them in the tactics of cavalry. He excelled as a swordsman, having received a military education at a school near London, it being intended that he should enter the army, but being naturally inclined to the arts he preferred coming to this country in order to follow his favorite pursuits.
For a number of years Mr. Cattanach carried on the largest decorative business in New England. He decorated several of the churches in Pawtucket and Providence and in other towns of the state. Many private dwellings also bear testimony to his artistic ability. The designs and colors were his own, and the latter possess a durability not achieved by any one else.
A very valuable invention which Mr. Cattanach has perfected, is an apparatus for the manufacture of chemically pure acetic acid for the arts and for culinary purposes, also for the manufacture of hydrocaulous and for the distillation and purification of water and other fluids, and for other valuable purposes. Among his other inventions is an improved furnace which will give the same amount of heat with one third of the coal required by ordinary furnaces, and it also consumes its own smoke. Equally valuable with the invention of the apparatus for the manufacture of acids is that for the manufacture of a substitute for leather in its various uses, the most valuable of which is a covering for top rolls in the art of cotton spinning. Mr. Cattanah has also invented a new system of filtration which is superior to any now in vogue.
He was married in 1859 to Agnes A. Leckie, twin daughter of Hugh and Mary (Drowne) Leckie. Mr. Leckie was a prominent cotton manufacturer in early life in Connecticut, but for nearly forty years carried on business in Pawtucket. He was a worthy citizen and a representative of some of the noblest blood of Scotland. Mrs. Leckie was a relative of Gilbert Stuart, the famous portrait painter, whose picture of Washington is the accepted likeness of the 'Father of his Country'. Mr. Cattanach has six children, four sons: Duncan A., a graduate of Brown University now in Colorado; John L.; Hugh L.; and Donald Charles A.; who are engaged with their father in the management of the laboratories and works at Ingrahamville; and two daughters, Mary A., and Anna V. S. Cattanach.
CHALK, Henry J., the only child of John and Mary (Corbett) Chalk, was born in Woonsocket, R. I., April 5, 1868. He went to school until he was fourteen years old, and then worked on a farm for some years. He then learned the most important part of the tailoring trade, the art of garment cutting, with R. V. Woods of Pawtucket, and at the age of eighteen went to work in the capacity of a cutter for Max Feder, the tailor. He remained in this situation three years, and then worked for John A. O'Neill as manager and cutter for seven years. In 1895 he bought out Mr. O'Neill and carried on business until March, 1896. Aug. 10, 1896, he opened his present establishment, the Pawtucket Pressing and Tailoring Co., room 3, Payne building, Railroad avenue, Pawtucket, where he has developed a good business. Mr. Chalk is a member of Delany Council, Knights of Columbus. He was married to Alice Jenks, Nov. 27, 1895.
CLAPP, Bela P., was born in Westhampton, Mass., May 24, 1830, and is the eighth child of Bela P. and Cynthia (Carr) Clapp. He obtained his education in the public schools of Chesterfield and Williamsburg, Mass. In his 19th year he went to Providence, to learn the drug business, but in 1854 came to Pawtucket and purchased the drug store located at 181 Main street. While conducting this business he became interested in a process for extracting ammonia from the ammoniacal waters of gas works, and after many experiments succeeding in perfecting a method which is now universally known as the Clapp process. He at once disposed of the drug business and devoted his entire time to the manufacture of ammonia. His product is famous all over the world and is used in every country. In 1889 the business was incorporated under the name of the B. P. Clapp Ammonia Co., and Mr. Clapp was elected general manager, with the principal office in New York, and the main works are on River street, Pawtucket. The company has branch establishments at Cincinnati, Ohio, Louisville, Ky., St. Louis and Kansas City, Mo., Bayonee, N. J., Washington, D. C., and also in London, England.
Mr. Clapp is a Republican. He is a member of the Masonic Order. In 1856 he was married to Eliza M. Hopkins of Coventry, R. I., by which union there was no issue: she died in 1860. In 1863 he was married to Sarah A. Hopkins of Coventry, R. I., by which union there are four children: Bela C., b. Aug. 4, 1865, night editor of the New York Journal of Commerce; Ralph R., b. Nov. 22, 1867, now in charge of the branch house in London, England; Edith L., b. Jan. 17, 1871, married Lincoln C. Heywood of Pawtucket; and Samuel H., b. Sept. 18, 1876.
The American ancestor of the Clapp Family was Roger Clapp, born in England in 1609. He came to this country in the ship 'Mary and John', landing at Nantasket [sic], Mass., May 30, 1630. He was captain of 'The Castle', now Fort Independence, in Boston Harbor, and received L50 per year as salary. In 1633 he was married in Johanna Ford, a fellow passenger on the 'Mary and John', and they had 15 children. Their tombstones may be seen in the King's chapel burying ground on Tremont street, Boston, still in a state of fair preservation. The Pawtucket Clapps descend from Preserved Clapp, a son of Roger, who settled in Northampton, Mass., in 1663. Bela P. Clapp, the father of the present Bela P., was born in Westhampton, Mass., Nov. 6, 1792. In early life he was a merchant, but in his last years a farmer. For many years he was a representative in the Massachusetts legislature. He was town clerk of the town of Westhampton, justice of the peace, one of the selectmen, and occupied other positions of honor, trust and responsibility. His father's name was Sylvanus, who was born in Northampton, Mass., in 1764, and settled as a farmer in Westhampton. He was the fourth generation from Roger Clapp. Up to Sylvanus Clapp's time the name was spelled with one p. Sylvanus was the son of Ebenezer, who was b. 1726; Ebenezer was the son of Samuel, b. 1677; Samuel was the son of Preserved, b. in 1643, and Preserved was the son of Roger who was b. in England, April 6, 1609. Mr. Clapp's mother, who was b. in Stonington, Conn., in 1793, descends from a family equally as old as her father's. Robert Carr, her ancestor, purchased Conanicut Island in Narragansett Bay, R. I., from the Indians in 1635, the year in which he arrived in this country from London.
CLARK, John H., the son of Philip and Catharine Clark, was born in 1843 in one of the most romantic and beautiful regions in Ireland, between Castle Blarney and Ballabay. The Clark family lived for many generations in County Monaghan, Ireland, and the first of the name is said to have settled there at the time that the Sassenach, the Anglo Saxon invaders, conquered the Green Isle. John's father was a farmer, and emigrated in 1849 to this country with his family. He came first to Providence, but in 1850 removed to Pawtucket, and went to work as a mason. John received his education in the Pawtucket public schools and then worked in succession in the LeFavour mills, Pawtucket, and the Valley Falls cotton mills. But the life of an operative was not congenial to him, so he began to look around for a wider field, where his opportunities for advancement would be greater. In pursuance of this desire he learned the machinist trade with Easton & Burnham. He then worked for J. K. Mallory as a spool maker, and held several other positions in spool shops. He was in the employ of Weatherhead & Thompson for several months. In September, 1871, having saved some money, he opened a dry goods store on Central street, Central Falls. He succeeded beyond his expectations and soon after moved into larger quarters in J. G. Fales' block. He made and saved money rapidly, and in 1883 bought the Walcott estate on Main street, Pawtucket, and moved his store into it. He raised the building, put on three additions and largely increased the business, by his shrewdness, enterprise and foresight. By these means he accumulated considerable property. In 1889 he sold out the business to Radikin, Cooney & Forbes, and since then has spent his time in looking after his real estate interests, which are extensive. He lives a quiet retired life. In 1893 he made a tour of Europe, and visited the place of his birth in Ireland. Mr. Clark is a member of St. Mary's church. In 1871 he was married to Ellen F. Carland of Plymouth, Mass., and they have had six children, three of whom are living, namely, Mary E., William J. and Arthur J. Those deceased were Patrick J., John H., Jr., and Philip.
CLARNER, John Ernst, was born Feb. 12, 1827, in Kirchenlamitz, Bavaria, Germany. His male relatives for several generations were dyers. In 1848 he joined the revolutionists and in consequence emigrated to America in 1849, but was wrecked on the banks of Newfoundland, and arrived in New York with nothing but the clothing he wore and his guitar. He was the second German to become a resident of Pawtucket. In 1850 he became foreman dyer in Samuel Merry's dyehouse and remained there fourteen years. In 1867 he went to Greene & Daniels as bleacher and dyer, remained there ten years; and in 1877 became foreman dyer for the Conant Thread Co., now J. & P. Coats, (Limited), which position he still holds. Mr. Clarner's general characteristics are a love of his profession and music. As he left his country on account of political troubles he has always been greatly interested in sound government in America. He has always stood firm as a Republican and a temperance advocate. In 1856 he was naturalized, and was married the same year, June 26, to Caroline Soule Weeden, the second daughter of John H. Weeden, Esq.
illustration on page 271: photo, J. Ernst Clarner, Foreman dyer, J. & P. Coats, Limited.
COKELY, George W., was born in Providence, R. I., July 10, 1868, received his education in the public schools, and then in Mowry & Goff's English and Classical school, where he obtained the foundation of a good business training. His first occupation was as clerk for Frank A. Rhodes, cotton goods and print cloth broker, in which position he remained two years. He then engaged in the bicycle business, and traveled extensively throughout the country as salesman for some of the leading concerns. April, 1895, in partnership with H. A. Monroe, he established the firm of Cokely, Monroe & Co., and opened a large bicycle and sporting goods store in the Payne block, Railroad avenue, Pawtucket. He retired from this firm, and engaged with the Congdon-Carpenter Co., of Providence, in Nov. 1895, as the manager of the new bicycle department which was opened on the ground floor of the Industrial Trust Company's building, corner of Exchange place and Exchange street, February, 1896. Under Mr. Cokely's capable direction a large business has been developed.
Mr. Cokely is the son of John H. and Sarah J. (Kelton) Cokely. His father was born in Providence, April 5, 1836, was a commissioned officer in the Union army during the war of the rebellion, and was attached to the recruiting office at Boston, Mass., and the provost marshall's office in Providence, R. I. At the close of the war he became a successful and popular detective. He died at Providence, Feb. 28, 1891. Mr. Cokely's mother was born in Rehoboth, Mass., Oct. 6, 1842. Her father, Edward L. Kelton, was a successful mason and building contractor and resided in Pawtucket from 1842 to 1846.
Mr. Cokely attends the Union Baptist church of Providence. He is a Republican in politics, is a member of the Providence Athletic Association, the Narragansett Boat Club, and of the Pawtucket Cycle Club.
COLE, Henry S., the surviving partner of Cole Bros., stationary engine and cotton machinery manufacturers, was born in that part of Seekonk, Mass., which is now East Providence, in 1837. The Cole family were among the early settlers of Rehoboth, and various branches of it have resided in that town and in Seekonk for many generations. Some of the Coles took part in the revolutionary war. Henry S. obtained his education in the public schools of his native town, and at an early age was apprenticed to the machinist trade with the Corliss Steam Engine Co., Providence, with which concern he remained several years as a journeyman. He then came to Pawtucket in 1858 and in company with his brother, Edward R. Cole, started a general machine shop, under the firm name of Cole Bros. They made cotton machinery and did general repairing. In 1864 they began to construct steam fire engines. For many years they turned out these machines, and their engines are still in use in many of the best equipped fire departments of the country. This branch of the business has, however, now been discontinued, but steam fire engines are occasionally sent to the shops to be repaired. The firm now makes automatic banding machines for spinning frame bands, beaming and chaining machines, stationary steam engines, and builds special machinery to order. The shops, at the corner of Main and Bailey streets, have been occupied by the firm for more than thirty years.
Since the death of Edward, May 28, 1877, the business has been conducted by Henry S., under the old name. In politics Mr. Cole is a Republican. He attends the First Baptist church, and belongs to the following societies: Union Lodge of Masons, Royal Arch Chapter, Holy Sepulchre Commandery, and is a member of the Masonic Consistory. He was married in East Providence to Olive A. Lawton, and they have three children: Amy B., Annie L. and H. Herbert, all born in Pawtucket.
Simeon Daggett, the maternal grandfather of Mr. Cole, was a prominent citizen in Seekonk, Mass. He was the builder of the old Slater mill in Pawtucket, and put into its wheel pit the first improved water wheel ever put in operation in America. He erected many buildings and a majority of the first mills in Pawtucket. As a mill builder he was a thoroughly practical man, as he designed and erected the buildings, placed the machinery, and built the dams and trenches. He was a friend and associate of Samuel Slater and was interested with him in many undertakings. Edward R. Cole, Mr. Cole's paternal grandfather, was a sea-captain and sailed for Brown & Ives of Providence. Mr. Cole has in his possession an oil portrait of his grandfather painted in China by a native artist. Mr. Cole's father, Hammond Cole, was born in Seekonk; for years he was a mechanic at the Corliss Steam Engine Co., Providence, but in his later life was connected with his sons in the Pawtucket shop. He died Jan. 3, 1891.
COLLINS, William Wright, was born at Ashton-under-Lyne, England, Oct. 19, 1824, and died at Pawtucket, Feb. 14, 1895. His maternal grand-uncle, William Wright, was one of the first cotton manufacturers in Lancashire. His wife's family, the Hibberts, is one of the oldest in Lancashire, and one of its members, Sir John Hibbert, is a member of Parliament. Mr. Collins came to America in 1859, and in company with his brother, Joseph Wright Collins, started in 1864 a machine shop from which the present large business of his sons, the Collins Bros., was developed. He was married in 1844 to Selina Hibbert, who was born Nov. 24, 1824, and died Aug. 4, 1878. They had five children: Sarah Ann, Henry, Louisa, Esther, and Joseph Wright. Mr. Collins was a member of the Pawtucket city council for two years. -- [See page 150 for account of business.]"
illustrations on page 272: photo, William W. Collins, Founder of the
firm of Collins Bros.
photo, Henry Collins, of Collins Bros, Machinery manufacturers
photo, Joseph W. Collins, of Collins Bros., Machinery manufacturers
COLLINS, Henry, was born at Ashton-under-Lyne, March 9, 1847, and received his education in private schools in his native city and also in the Pawtucket public schools. He served a three years' apprenticeship with Fales & Jenks, after which he went to work for his father and was admitted to a partnership in 1882. He is a Republican, attends the Congregational church, and belongs to Jenks Lodge, No. 24, A. F. and A. M., Central Falls; Good Samaritan Lodge, No. 8, I. O. O. F.; Pawtucket Royal Arch Chapter; and Holy Sepulchre Commandery, Knights Templars. He was married Nov. 25, 1868, at Lonsdale, to Elizabeth Hollingworth, of Ashton-under-Lyne. They have four children all born in Pawtucket: Charles Everett, b. Sep. 22, 1869; Elijah William, b. April 16, 1873; Alice Selina, b. June 24, 1877; William Wright, b. May 26, 1880.
COLLINS, Joseph Wright, was born at Ashton-under-Lyne, March 24, 1856. He attended the public schools of Pawtucket until he was thirteen years old, when he went to work in his father's shop, and in 1884 became a member of the present firm of Collins Bros. He is a Republican in politics and is a member of the Jenks Lodge, No. 24, A. F. and A. M., Central Falls; Good Samaritan Lodge, No. 8, I. O. O. F.; Pawtucket Royal Arch Chapter; and Holy Sepulchre Commandery, Knights Templars. He was married Oct. 17, 1883, to Eva E. Buffum of Millbury, Mass., and they have three children: Harry Wright, b. July 13, 1884; Benjamin Fletcher, b. Feb. 24, 1886; and Elizabeth Selina, b. Sept. 19, 1888.
CONANT, Hezekiah, may justly be said to be the leading manufacturer of Pawtucket. By his energy, foresight and ability the great thread mills, so long known by his name, were originated and developed, until to-day they form the largest industrial establishment not only in Pawtucket but in Rhode Island. The Conant family is descended from a John Conant who lived in Devonshire, England, during the time of the Reformation. He was the grandfather of Roger Conant, who was the founder of Salem, Mass., in 1626, and the first governor of the colony until the arrival of John Endicott late in 1628. Roger Conant came to America about July, 1623, it is supposed in the ship Anne, the third vessel to arrive at Plymouth. He is said to have been 'a pious, sober and prudent gentleman'. His descendants have been substantial, honest, hard-working people, of a modest retiring disposition. As pioneers, merchants, manufacturers, and occasionally as clergymen or physicians, they have filled their placed in life without ostentation, and but few of them have been lawyers or public men.
The genealogy of the family is as follows: John, b. about 1520, at Gittisham, Devonshire; Richard, b. about 1548, in the parish of East Budleigh; Roger, the American immigrant, baptised April 9, 1592, in East Budleigh, Devonshire; Lot, who was b. about 1624 at Nantasket or Cape Ann; John, b. Dec. 15, 1652, at Beverly, Mass; Daniel, b. Nov. 19, 1694, at Beverly; Josiah, b. Nov. 5, 1732, at Beverly; Josiah, b. Sept. 30, 1779, at Dudley, Mass.; Hervey, b. June 3, 1796, at Dudley.
Hezekiah was born in Dudley, Mass., July 28, 1827, and was the fourth child of Hervey and Dolly (Healy) Conant. He received his education at Nichols Academy in his native town, attending it in winter, usually, and working on his father's farm in summer. When seventeen years old he went to Worcester and learned to be a printer in the office of the Worcester County Gazette, an anti-slavery weekly newspaper. At the end of two years the firm, Estey & Evans, failed, and he then worked for a year in the printing office of the National Aegis. The printing trade evidently did not suit him, for he then went to work in a machine shop, where he remained two years. At the end of that time, having meanwhile saved some money, he took a year's course at Nichols Academy. Returning to work in the machine shop, he spent his evenings in learning mechanical drawing and studying mechanical engineering. As a result he became a very expert mechanic, and developed great ability as a mechanical engineer and inventor. His education had in this manner been obtained in a very practical school, but at the expense of much toil and hardship on his part.
From this time on he may be said to have been a professional mechanical expert and inventor. He invented, about 1852, a pair of 'lasting pinchers' for the use of shoemakers, obtained a patent, but made no money out of the article. He then worked in Boston and Worcester in various machine shops, and from the latter place went to Hartford, where he soon was engaged at Colt's firearm manufactory. While in Hartford he made drawings for Christian Sharp, the inventor of the Sharp rifle, and assisted him in constructing machines for making projectiles. In 1856 he invented and patented an improvement on the Sharp rifle, known as the 'gas check', which was considered so important that the United States and British governments immediately ordered its application to all arms manufactured for them by the Sharp Rifle Co. The same year he constructed a machine for Samuel Slater & Sons of Webster, Mass., for sewing the selvage on doeskins. No patent was secured on this contrivance, but it was very successful, and has been in use ever since.
About this time Mr. Conant first turned his attention to the improvement of machinery used in the thread manufacture. He constructed a machine for dressing sewing thread and invented an automatic machine for winding spool cotton, for which he secured a patent. The Willimantic Linen Co., after an inspection of the latter machine, purchased one-half the patent right, and engaged Mr. Conant, Feb. 1, 1859, as a mechanical expert, on a three years' contract. He remained with this company nine years, renewing his three years' contract twice, and his salary for the last three years was double what it was the first three. During the first three years he invented the 'ticketing machine' which cuts out labels, gums them, and applies them simultaneously to each end of the thread spools at the rate of one hundred per minute. In 1864 he visited Europe in the interest of his employers and inspected many of the large thread establishments in the old world, among them the great works of J. & P. Coats and of the Messrs. Clark in Paisley, Scotland. From 1865 to 1868, the last three years of his nine years' service, he was superintendent of the works of the Willimantic Linen Co. During his connection with this concern the company had more than doubled its capital and production.
In 1868 Mr. Conant resigned his position with the Willimantic Linen Co., and removed to Pawtucket, where he organized the Conant Thread Co., with an authorized capital of $100,000, and became the treasurer of the corporation and the manager of the works. The first factory, a wooden building 100 feet long, 40 feet wide, and two stories in height, was immediately erected, and put in operation. May, 1896, Mr. Conant again went to Europe and effected a combination with J. & P. Coats of Paisley, Scotland, the leading manufacturers of thread in the world, by which that firm became a partner in the Providence enterprise. Mr. Conant returned in June, and with the large capital thus at his disposal proceeded to enlarge the plant in order to manufacture the Coats' thread. The work of erecting new buildings was at once begun. Mill No. 2, 300 by 70 feet, and four stories in height was finished April, 1870; the beachery was completed in 1871; a large spinning mill, three stories high, was started in 1873 and was known as No. 3; Mill No. 4, equipped with twisting and spinning machinery, was erected in 1876; a dye-house was built in 1877; and in 1881, Mill No. 5, which is about as large as Nos. 3 and 4 together, was erected. Previous to 1873 the yarn was imported from Scotland. A great deal of the machinery put into these mills was of English manufacture, but Mr. Conant's inventions were used in some of the departments. To begin with, a great many of the operatives were brought from Scotland and were skilled workers who had been trained in the factories at Paisley.
During all this period of development Mr. Conant has continued to be treasurer and manager, and the splendid organization of the great establishment is due to his executive ability and his genius for mechanical arrangement. The mammoth concern now employs over 2000 persons and 'without doubt is the best arranged, best equipped, and best organized establishment of its kind in the world'. Until 1893 the establishment was operated under the name of the Conant Thread Co., but since then has been conducted as one of the branches of J. & P. Coats (Limited), but Mr. Conant still continues as executive head of the great enterprise. The works now cover about forty acres of land and the capital invested is more than $4,000,000. Good wages have always been paid to the operatives, who in general have consequently been of a higher average in intelligence and character than the population of the majority of factory towns. Many of the employees own their own homes. The section of Pawtucket where these factories are located has been transformed from a wilderness of brush and woods into a place of homes, schools, and churches.
The caring for, directing and managing such an immense enterprise as the great thread works proved, would have been sufficient to absorb the entire energy of most men. Mr. Conant did devote most of his attention to the industry, but he did not allow it to entirely exclude other interests. He is president of the Pawtucket Institution for Savings; president and director of the Pacific National Bank; vice-president of the Pawtucket Safe Deposit Co.; and a director in the First National and the Slater National banks of Pawtucket. In the welfare of his native town of Dudley, Mass., he has manifested great interest. Here, with his family, he spends his summers. At his expense the old and dilapidated buildings of the Nichols Academy were resuscitated, new school edifices and dormitories erected, an astronomical observatory built and equipped, and a fine library and reading-room provided.
One of the most noteworthy acts of Mr. Conant's life was the erection at his own cost of a handsome church edifice to replace the old Congregational church at Dudley, which was destroyed by fire, June 3, 1890. The only conditions coupled with this gift was that the donor might have the right to put in a memorial window to perpetuate the memory of his family and ancestors, and that he and his heirs would have a right to one pew free of tax. The corner stone of the edifice was laid Oct. 16, 1890, the bell was consecrated Sept. 29, 1891, and the church was dedicated Dec. 17, 1891. The edifice is built of brick, with underpinning and basement of granite and trimmings of sandstone. It is in the Romanesque style of architecture, seventy feet in length by forty-four feet in width, and has a bell tower in the centre of the front facade, sixteen feet square and seventy-eight feet high. The church is now known as the Conant Memorial. The memorial window put in by Mr. Conant represents the celebrated historical event in the life of his ancestor, Roger Conant, when he acted as peacemaker between Capt. Miles Standish and Capt. Hewes, who with their followers were about to come to blows about a fishing stage at Cape Ann. This scene is certainly appropriate for a 'temple of peace on earth, good will to men.'
As an inventor Mr. Conant is endowed with pre-eminent mental power, and his success in developing the great mills is largely due to his qualifications in that line. Still, in the popular mind, because of the fact that he has outwardly figured chiefly as a man of affairs, his title to be considered a great inventor has not been adequately recognized. In many ways outside of his business has he manifested this talent. The clock on the Memorial church at Dudley has a number of very ingenious improvements made by Mr. Conant. In 1886 he presented to the Pawtucket Business Men's Association a remarkable clock of his own invention. It has three dials, one showing solar and another sidereal time, and the third shows the progress of the sun, moon and the earth throughout the year.
Mr. Conant has been married three times. His first wife was Sarah Williams, daughter of Col. Morris and Elizabeth (Eaton) Learned, to whom he was married Oct. 4, 1853. She died July 17, 1855. Nov. 1859, he was married to a sister of his first wife, Harriet Knight Learned, who died July 6, 1864. Dec. 5, 1865, he was married to Mary Eaton, daughter of Dr. Samuel P. and Harriet (Eaton) Knight. There was no issue except by the second marriage, and the children were a son and a daughter: Samuel Morris, b. Dec. 9, 1861, married in Lincoln, June 1, 1887, to Nelly Buell Ferguson, and is now the president of the Adam Sutcliffe Co., printers and lithographers; Edith Adina, b. Sept. 19, 1863, was married Feb. 4, 1885, to George M. Thorton, at present teasurer of the Union Wadding Co.
CORRIGAN, John P., M. D., is of the second generation of his family in America. His parents came to the United States from Ireland in 1870. John P. was born in Roscommon, Ireland, Nov. 10, 1857, and is the first child of Dominick and Bridget (Flanagan) Corrigan. He attended the public schools and completed his education at St. Lawrence and St. Mary's College, Montreal, Canada. He studied medicine in the University of New York, was graduated with the degree of M. D. in 1883, then practiced his profession in New York for a few years, but in 1885 came to Pawtucket, where he has established a large and lucrative practice, which is continually increasing. He is peculiarly fitted by temperament for the exercise of his profession, being a man of large sympathies and great gentleness. He is the consulting physician for the Home for Aged Poor and for the Day Nursery. Nov. 24, 1886, he was married to Nellie G. Ford of New York, and by this union there are two children, Nellie, b. Sept. 20, 1887, and Thomas, b. June 11, 1889.
COSTELLO, John J., son of P. and Mary (Birmingham) Costello, was born in the west of Ireland in 1870. He went to school until he was 16 years old, then set out alone for America to join his sister, and arrived in Providence in 1886. His parents remained in Ireland, where they are still living upon the old homestead where the family have resided for several generations. A few days after his arrival he went to work for John Casey & Co., in the grocery and meat business at Olneyville. He continued for seven years in the Providence store, until 1893, when he was selected to manage the new business which the firm opened on the corner of Lonsdale and Mineral Spring avenues, Woodlawn. He was given the entire management, and the credit for the successful development of the business is due to him. He purchases supplies and conducts the store as it if were his own, and has won a large trade by sound methods and pleasant manners. The business is now groceries, meats and provisions.
COTTRELL, John T., who for many years was an active business man in Pawtucket, was of Scotch descent. The first American ancestor of the family accompanied the Cabots in one of their exploring voyages to the New World. The grandfather of John T. was a man of affairs in Southern Rhode Island, and died at South Kingstown, R. I. In 1843, one of his sons, John Stanton Cottrell, born April 8, 1801, was a prosperous farmer and gave all his children the advantages of a good education. John Stanton Cottrell married Desire Pearce Northup, and the oldest of their children, John T. Cottrell, was born at South Kingstown, Aug. 2, 1833. John T. received his early education in the high schools of his native town and afterwards studied at the Adelphian Academy of Brockton (now Bridgewater), Mass. It was his intention to enter college after leaving the academy and later take up one of the professions as his life work. An end was put to this determination on account of his eyes being exceedingly weak, and he was warned by his oculist to leave books and seek relief and rest by total abstinence from reading.
For the next few years he aided his father in superintending the large home farm. Later he went to Narragansett Pier where he established a large coal and lumber business, which he successfully conducted for seven years. In 1873 he moved to Pawtucket and continued in the same line of business, purchasing the interest of the late Albert Bliss in the coal and lumber firm of Joseph Smith & Co. About 1881 Mr. Cottrell purchased the entire interest of the Joseph Smith Company, and was the sole owner of the business until his death, Dec. 2, 1889. The business is now being successfully carried on by his oldest son, John S. Cottrell, as trustee.
Mr. Cottrell was a Republican in politics and ably represented the town of Jamestown for several years in the Rhode Island senate. After his removal to Pawtucket his business interests were so large and engrossing that he had little time to give to politics. His only public office here was on the school committee from which he resigned, after a short time of service. He was an attendant of the First Baptist church, was a member of the Holy Sepulchre Commandery, Knights Templars. Feb. 7, 1864, Mr. Cottrell was married to Emeline Taylor of South Kingstown. He was survived by six children, of which number only two were adults at the time of his death.
John T. Cottrell in every respect was a good type of a successful business man. During his life of close application to business he was simple and unassuming in his manners, even to the lowest. He was honored, loved, and universally respected wherever he was known. He died of acute pneumonia, after three days' illness.
CRAWFORD, C. Fred., was born in Pawtucket, Mass., Dec. 27, 1844, and is the ninth child of George and Hannah Crawford. He attended the public schools of his native town until he was eighteen years old. His first occupation was in the factory of R. & G. Cushman, where he started as reaming boy and steadily passed through all the various departments, learning the details of each, then entered the office as shipping clerk and was finally made bookkeeper and clerk after the death of Mr. Phillips, one of the partners. Soon after, he was admitted to the firm under the name of Atwood, Crawford & Co. The business continued to increase and was incorporated under the style of The Atwood-Crawford Co., which is now one of the largest establishments engaged in the manufacture of spools in New England. Mr. Crawford is now a member of the board of directors. He is a Republican, and has occupied various positions from fireward to assemblyman. He was secretary of the Central Falls Fire District from 1878 until 1890, when he declined re-election. He served in the General Assembly of 1887 and 1888 as a member of the lower house from Lincoln. In 1891 he was elected town clerk of Lincoln and is now city clerk of the city of Central Falls and also clerk of the probate court. For years he was clerk and afterwards was moderator of the voting district of Central Falls in the town of Lincoln. He is now chairman of the Republican City Committee of Central Falls, treasurer of the Republican State League, and treasurer of the Lincoln Republican Association. In fraternal affairs he is identified with the American Order of United Workmen, Pawtucket Lodge, No. 1, having been one of the charter members, and holds certificate No. 1, the first ever issued in this state. He is also Past Chancellor of Washington Lodge, No. 4, Knights of Pythias; and a member of Pawtucket Council, No. 537, Royal Arcanum; was foreman of the Pacific Steam Engine Co. for two years; is now president of the Central Falls Veteran Firemen's Association, and is an associate member of Ballou Post, No. 3, G. A. R. Mr. Crawford belongs to the Central Falls Congregational church and has been Sunday school librarian continuously for more than 33 years. He was married to Mattie M. Horton of Smithfield, by which there are two children: Frederick S., b. July 13, 1869; and C. Louis, b. Feb. 25, 1879.
CRAWFORD, James M., was born in Bellville, N. J., Sept. 1, 1832, and is descended on his father's side from an old Scotch family, but his mother was a native of England. He attended the public schools of Pawtucket, Mass., - whither his family had removed when he was two years of age, - until he attained his fifteenth year. Upon the death of his father in 1848 he was compelled to go to work in a cotton mill, but desiring to learn a trade he entered the foundry of James S. Brown in 1850 and soon became a proficient moulder. Owing to a severe accident he was compelled to abandon this occupation, and in 1860 he went into the flour, grain and grocery business. During the civil war he offered his services as a soldier but was rejected three times on account of physical disabilities; but he assisted in raising two companies in Pawtucket, and was also an active member of the Pawtucket Light Guard, of which he was finally made paymaster, with the rank of lieutenant, on the staff of Gen. Horace Daniels. He continued in the grocery business until 1871, when he became a traveling salesman in the New England and Middle states, until 1885. He was from 1885 to 1893 superintendent of the City Coal Co. of Pawtucket. In politics Mr. Crawford is a Republican. He has always taken an active and spirited part in public affairs. In 1886 he was elected city sealer of weights and measures and was re-elected in 1887, 1891-92-93-94-95 and '96 and was appointed state sealer in October, 1892, which position he now holds in connection with the superintendency of street numbering. He is president of the Rhode Island Sealers of Weights and Measures Association. He is a member of the Knights of Pythias and treasurer of the Endowment Rank, a fraternal branch of that Order. He was actively connected with the volunteer fire department, and was treasurer of Monitor Engine Co. for fifteen years. Jan. 1, 1855, he was married to Annie E. Hart of Central Falls, and they have two children: Frank E., b. March 8, 1858, and Samuel H., b. Sept. 15, 1860.
CROSSLEY, Robert, was born in Halifax, West Riding, Yorkshire, England, Oct. 26, 1845, and was the only child of Henry and Mary (Crossley) Crossley. He attended the private schools of his native town and after completing his education learned the trade of dyeing and finishing dress goods. He worked at this occupation until 1881 when he came to the United States at the solicitation of W. F. & F. C. Sayles to take charge of dyeing and finishing at Saylesville. He remained at these works until 1883, when he severed his connection and established himself in the manufacture of chemicals, in company with Alfred Harrison, under the firm name of A. Harrison & Co. The factory was located on Pine street, Pawtucket, until 1883, when the works were removed to the present location, Charles street, North Providence. In political matters Mr. Crossley is a Republican, because the tinkering with the tariff had nearly ruined the firm's business by destroying the market for many articles manufactured. Mr. Crossley is a member of the Park Place Congregational church. The only organization to which he belongs is the Society of Good Fellows. Mr. Crossley has been twice married, and his family at present living is: Lily, the wife of F. F. Halliday, Jr., of Pawtucket; James H.; Lawton; and Maud M., the wife of Charles D. Anderson of Providence. His maternal grandfather, Thomas Crossley, was b. July 26, 1797. His grandfather on his father's side was Benjamin (a brother of Thomas), who was b. Nov. 26, 1799. His mother, Mary Crossley, was b. Aug. 31, 1826, and his father, Henry, was b. the same year at Halifax. The family is a very old one and has been in business since 1635. Some of the members have been distinguished and one of its branches is a titled family.
CROSTON, Thomas, son of James and Hannah (Cooke) Croston, was born Nov. 20, 1843, in Manchester, England, and there received his education. At the age of sixteen he went to work in a braid mill, and followed this occupation for twelve years. He then opened a stationery store in Manchester, but disposed of it six years later, and emigrated to America. He came to Pawtucket, May 1, 1878, and engaged as a workman with the firm of George H. Fuller & Son, manufacturers of jewelers' findings, with whom he remained until 1893, when he accepted his present position with the State Census Bureau in Providence. Mr. Croston is a Republican and has been active in politics since 1880. For some years he has been secretary of the Pawtucket Republican City Committee. He was charter member of Charles E. Chickering Lodge, K. of P., and belongs to the Knights of the Ancient Essenic Order and the Garfield Club.
Mr. Croston is a member of an old Lancashire family which derives its patronymic from the parish of Croston, near Preston, England. The name is of frequent occurrence in the earlier English records, and the social status of those who bore it is indicated by the suffix 'Armigeri' - a distinction which in those days had a meaning, the old heralds only recognizing the right to bear arms in the case of those who could establish their claim and prove their descent from 'gentility'. The family suffered in estate for its loyalty to the crown during the civil wars. On the maternal side the Crostons have given a bishop and archbishop to the Church of England. The family were prominent for many years and have been identified with the professions and industries for generations, being people of substance in the region.
illustration on page 280: photo, Thomas Croston, with the State Census Bureau.