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Biography of Samuel Wayne Mather

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Mather, Samuel Wayne; manufacturer; born, Schuyler, N. Y., July 27, 1849; son of Asaph and Betsy Emily Davis Mather; limited education; his father was seriously injured when he was young, so could not go to school, after he was 11 years old; went to work to help support the family; worked three years in the woods burning charcoal; moved to Cattaraugus County, N. Y., with his parents and tor five years worked on his father’s farm; married, Frankville, N. Y., Sept. 6, 1887, Addie Viola Cooley; issue, five children, two living, Addie and William; his first wife died July 9, 1902; married the second time, Cleveland, Jan. 24, 1907, Lora E. Rock; two children, Arlo and Arline; came to Cleveland at the age of 22, and went into the grocery business; was in the business two and one-half years, lost all his money, and was over $2,000 in debt; but did not go into bankruptcy, but paid all his debts, dollar for dollar, with interest; worked at carpenter work till 1877; then went to Philadelphia, and manufactured a fire lighter of his own patent for one and one-half years; sold out and went to Cambridgeport, Mass.; remained there one year manufacturing the fire lighters; in 1879, sold out his patent, and returned to Cleveland, and established the Union Ladder & Washboard Works; in 1882, began making caskets to sell to the undertaking trade; not in the monopoly; in 1887, they all joined the monopoly and left him with a large stock of goods on hand and no customers to sell to; he offered his entire stock to them, worth $1,800 for $250; he was then instrumental in starting The Funeral Reform Ass’n of the U. S.; of which he is still mgr.; also manufacturer caskets and funeral supplies; Feb. 1, 1911, he began the manufacture of an automobile for funeral purposes, is now making an Auto funeral car, which carries the body, the flowers, and thirty-six mourners; holds the U. S. patent on the same; member Knights of Pythias.


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