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Biographical Sketch of William Grant Smith

Smith, William Grant; railway express business; born, Fox Lake, Wis., Aug. 24, 1861; son of Lewis and Fannie A. Stevens Smith; educated, public schools and Ripon College, Wisconsin; married, Medford, Mass., June 25, 1902, Martha Chapin Wilcox; one daughter, Josephine Wilcox Smith; in 1879, entered the employment of The American Express Co.; appointed supt. Wisconsin Division, 1892; same position for Michigan in 1895; asst. gen. agt. at Omaha, Neb. 1902; 2nd asst. to gen. manager, Chicago, Ill., 1903; asst. to vice pres. and gen. mgr., Chicago, Ill., 1906; mgr. Central Dept., Cleveland, 1910; member of Illinois Society, Sons of American Revolution; member Union, Automobile, and Congregational Clubs, and Chamber of Commerce, Congregational and Union League Clubs, of Chicago. Recreation:...

Biographical Sketch of J. I. Ayer

J. I. Ayer, book and music store, Mattoon; was born in Medford, Mass., Feb. 3, 1854. In 1866, the family moved to Elizabeth, N. J.; in addition to his common-school education, he enjoyed the advantages of a boarding-school at Nazareth, Penn.; this school was of a military character, and he here pursued a course in civil engineering; at the age of 15 years he entered the firm of Roberts & Co. (dealers in books and stationery), at Elizabeth, N. J., to take charge of his father’s interest, he being a member of the firm. In the fall of 1870, he came West to Illinois, and settled in Mattoon, and engaged in engineering on the Decatur, Mattoon & Sullivan and the Grayville & Mattoon Railroads; he was thus employed about three years; in 1874, he was employed as book-keeper in the Essex House, and remained till March, 1878; in November, 1877, he purchased his present business, and since March, 1878, has given it his personal supervision. He was married in August, 1876, to Mary L. Cleveland, a native of Melrose, Mass.; has one daughter-Mary L., born Aug. 20, 1878. Mr. Ayer is a relative of the world-renowned Dr. J. C. Ayer, of Lowell,...

Biography of Hon. James G. Swan

HON. JAMES G. SWAN. – Hon. James G. Swan was born in Medford Massachusetts January 11, 1818.He came to San Francisco via Cape Horn in 1850. He came to Shoalwater Bay in 1852, which was then a part of Oregon, and remained till 1856,when he went East as private secretary to Governor Isaac I. Stevens, Delegate to Congress at Washington, District of Columbia. He returned to the territory in 1858, and settled in Port Townsend. In 1862 he was appointed teacher in charge of the Makah Indian Agency at Neah Bay, and remained till 1866, having charge of the government property during the war. He rendered effective service in keeping peace among the Indians, and in protecting the Agency from incursions of foreign Indians from British Columbia. At the close of the war of the Rebellion, when the Confederate steamer, Shenandoah was destroying our whalers in the Arctic ocean and Behring Sea, the people of Puget Sound were in daily apprehension of the rebel cruiser destroying the lighthouse at Cape Flattery, the agency buildings at Neah Bay, and the town and mills on Puget Sound. there were no tug-boats nor steamers on the Sound as at present; and the sight of one excited general remark. One afternoon the smoke of a large steamer was discovered from the tower of the school building at Neah village, approaching from the north. It was supposed to be the Shenandoah coming to destroy the government property. George Jones, the agency farmer, asked Mr. Swan what they should do. “Climb up the flagstaff and nail the flag to the masthead,” said Mr. Swan. “I...

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