Daily True American, Page 2 - 8/13/1960
Suddenly, at Long Branch, N.J. on 11th inst., JOHN WHITTAKER, of this city, in the 63d year of his age.
Notice of time and place of funeral will be given in tomorrow’s paper.
Daily True American, Page 3 - 8/13/1960
MELANCHOLLY CASE OF DROWNING
Our citizens were startled on Saturday by the intelligence received by telegraph that Mr. JOHN WHITTAKER, one of our principal citizens, was drowned at Long Branch. Members of his family in this city started immediately by private conveyance for Long Branch, and returned yesterday morning about 7 o’clock with the lifeless remains of their relative. Other visitors at the Branch from this city arrived in the evening of Saturday, from some of whom we gather the following particulars.
Mr. Whittaker was out bathing at the usual morning hour, about 10 o’clock, on safe ground. He was seen alone by one of our citizens. Off in the distance beyond Mr. Whittaker were two ladies, Miss Parker and Miss Zabriskie, each attended by a gentleman, one of whom was the son of Mr. A. O. Zabriskie. There was some peculiarity in their conduct, but those looking on could not tell whether they were in distress or not, and the roaring of the sea prevented anything being heard. They seemed, however, to be held in this position in great trouble, unable to move in any direction. They were struggling against a strong undertow. Off in another direction was a Dr. Dummer, of Jersey City, who seeing the party in apparent distress, being himself a good swimmer, started to their relief. He went beyond them a considerable distance. At this point Mr. Whittaker was seen to strike out in the direction of the ladies. Mr. Whittaker also went a little beyond them; but by this time the party supposed to have been in peril had worked themselves towards the shore so as to be out of danger. But now attention was directed towards Mr. Whittaker and Mr. Dummer, who showed signs of distress and great struggling with the waves. Mr. Cooper, the proprietor of the Hotel, rushed into the water with a boat. Before he reached Mr. Dummer he had already sunk. He was seen, however, and pulled into the boat by Mr. Cooper and others. When first brought in it was thought life was not extinct. It was thought that he could be resuscitated, but after a successful trial, it is said, all hope was abandoned. Mr. Whittaker continued manfully to struggle with the waves. A strong, lusty man, said by some to have been a hackman, rushed into the water with two benches, one of which he pushed to Mr. Whittaker. He seized it and succeeded in getting on it.
For the moment he was considered safe, but a heavy breaker rolling up at the time, knocked him off the bench. His strength was now nearly gone. The hackman again made a dash for him, and tried to hold him up, but finding that impossible for any length of time, he was about to give him up, in order to save himself, when the persons on the shore succeeded in sending out a rope. The hackman seized the rope, still holding on to the had of Mr. Whittaker, while the persons on shore hauled them in. But life had already left the body of Mr. Whittaker. They immediately rolled him in blankets, carried him to the kitchen of the hotel, where there was an oven, and there continued faithfully to use every appliance to bring him to life, up to five o’clock in the afternoon, but without success.
Mr. Whittaker has been a regular visitor at the Branch for many years, and no one was regarded as better able to risk the dangers of the deceptive breakers than he. Hence he has frequently been known to go out after parties in danger in the water.
The loss of Mr. Whittaker will be deeply felt by their community. He was a worthy and enterprising citizen, who raised himself to competence by his own industry. – He was one of the trustees of the State street M. E. Church, and had contributed largely to that enterprise.
Daily True American, Page 2 - 8/13/1960
Daily True American, Page 2 - 8/14/1960
Suddenly, at Long Branch, N.J. on 11th inst., JOHN WHITTAKER, of this city, in the 63d year of his age.
The relatives and friends of the family are invited to attend his funeral, from his late residence, Market street, TOMORROW (Wednesday) at 3 P.M., without further invitation. Services will be held at the State st. M. E. Church.
Daily True American, Page 3 - 8/14/1960
LOSS OF LIFE BY SEA BATHING - FURTHER PARTICULARS OF THE DROWNING OF MR. WHITTAKER AND MR. DUMMER.
The correspondent of the New York World, gives nearly the same account of the drowning case published by us yesterday, with a few additional facts, and also of the loss of others:
The particulars of the earlier casualty are as follows: About 11 o’clock on Saturday, A.M., twenty or thirty of the boarders at the Long Branch Metropolitan hotel went down to the beach to enjoy the morning bath in the surf. Among the number were Mr. Edward O. Dummer of Jersey City, Mr. John Whittaker of Trenton, and A. O. Zabriskie, Esq., with his son and daughter-in-law, of the forner place. The majority of the party, including the two last named, had entered the water, and Messrs. Dummer and Whittaker were in the dressing-room preparing to join them, when an alarm was given that Mr. Zabriskie’s daughter and the other ladies were in danger. Dr. Dummer at once ran to the water, plunged in and swam to their relief. Mr. Whittaker followed him, and both had nearly reached their friends, when they were swept away into the deep current and eddies between the shore and the sand bar over which the surf breaks, and which is known to the Long Branch fishermen as the "sea-poose."
Both were good swimmers and almost within arms reach of those who loved them made violent exertions to regain the shallower water, but in vain; they seemed instantaneously to fall into a powerless condition, and sank beneath the surface. So suddenly did their efforts cease, that it is believed death in each case resulted from another cause than drowning. Mr. Whittaker was a portly, robust man, and Mr. Dummer had long been troubled with weakness of the chest, so that it is surmised the former was seized with congestion of the brain, brought on by alarm and unusual muscular action, and that the latter ruptured a blood-vessel in his lungs.
Mr. Cooper, proprietor of the Metropolitan hotel, who was sailing just outside the surf, in a few minutes drew the body of Dr. Dummer into his boat. A fisherman plunged into the brakers, and in the most heroic and intrepid manner, reached the corpse of Mr. Whittaker, and swam with it to the shore. Dr. Rogers, of Philadelphia, with Drs. Berry, of Brooklyn, and Scrivens, of Long Branch, were in immediate attendance and vainly used their skill to restore the drowned men. Meantime, the wife of Mr. Whittaker, his son, and other friends of both deceased, were agonized spectators of the scene. Mrs. W. was completely overwhelmed by the sudden blow, and was carried in a half senseless condition to the hotel.
Dr. Dummer had been called to Long Branch to visit a patient. Mr. Whittaker had made it his favorite watering place for thirty years; had been there three weeks with his family, and all were to have returned to Trenton this (Monday) morning. Mr. W. was sixty-three years of age. He had the respect of all who knew him. Dr. Dummer was thirty-five years of age, a bachelor, and resided with a married sister in Jersey City. His brother is the manager of the extensive glass works in that place. His remains were forwarded to these relations by the afternoon train. Those of Mr. Whittaker were conveyed in a hearse to Trenton on Sunday morning.
Daily True American, Page 3 - 8/15/1960
The funeral of Mr. John Whittaker will take place to-day. Mr. Batchelder, the pastor of the Church of which Mr. Whittaker was a member, was intercepted in a summer tour among the mountains, by the intelligence of this melancholy event and hastened to the city to perform the last duty of a pastor. The Church sustains in this sudden event an irreparable loss.
Daily True American, Page 3 - 8/16/1960
At a meeting of the Eagle Fire Company, held at their engine house on Monday evening, the following resolutions were unanimously adopted:
WHEREAS, The sad intelligence having reached us of the sudden and unexpected death of Mr. John Whittaker, one of the original members of the company, and for many years an active member of the same; therefore,
Resolved, That in the death of Mr. Whittaker we have lost an honored and useful citizen, and this company a worthy member.
Resolved, That we deeply sympathise with his family in their sad and sudden bereavement, and assure them they have our condolance and sympathy as a token of respect to the deceased.
Resolved, That our engine house and engine be draped in mourning for thirty days, and that we attend the funeral in a body.
Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be forwarded to the daily papers of this city:
JAMES F. WENTWORTH,
August 13, 1860 Committee
Daily True American, Page 3 - 8/16/1960
The funeral of Mr. Whittaker was largely attended yesterday. The services were at the State street Methodist E. Church. A chapter from 1 Col. xv, was read by Rev. Mr. Hill. A hymn was given out by Rev. Mr. Christine, ("God moves in a mysterious way," &c.) and sung by the choir. Prayer was then offered up by Rev. Mr. Chalker, of Bordentown. The sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Batchelder, from Ps. Xcvii. 2. "Clouds and darkness are round about him; righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne." Rev. A. K. Street closed the service with a few remarks on the character of the deceased, at the Cemetery the funeral services were read by Rev. Mr. Batchelder, and the benediction was pronounced by Rev. Mr. Page. The whole services were very solemn and impressive.
Daily State Gazette & Republican, Page 3 - 8/13/1860
SAD DROWNING CASE
We regret to learn, on Saturday morning last, of the death of Mr. John Whittaker, of this city, and Dr. Dummer, of Jersey City, at Long Branch, by drowning. They were in bathing at the time, and the sea being rough, they were carried out a considerable distance by the breakers. Every effort was made to save them, but of no avail. Benches were placed in the water, but as the parties were weak from exhaustion, they could not hold on. A gentleman on the beach went in, and by floating on his back, succeeded in bringing the bodies ashore, where the bystanders rolled them in order to reanimate them, but it proved unsuccessful.
Mr. Whittaker was one of our most prominent and esteemed citizens, and leaves a large circle of friends to mourn his sudden death.
Daily State Gazette & Republican, Page 3 - 8/16/1860
BURIAL OF JOHN WHITTAKER, Esq.
The Funeral Obsequies of John Whittaker, Esq., yesterday afternoon, were numerously attended by a large concourse of sympathising friends. The solemn cortege left his residence a little after 8 o’clock, and proceeded to the State Street M. E. Church. Here a large audience had already assembled, so that the friends in the Funeral Procession quite filled the seats. Rev Mr. Hill read an appropriate chapter, and Rev. W. W. Christine followed with a hymn, after which Rev. Mr. Chalker, of Bordentown, offered up an impressive prayer.
The Funeral Sermon was then preached by Rev. Geo. W. Batchelder, the pastor of the church. His text was the sublime passage in the 97th Psalm, "Clouds and darkness are round and about Him, but righteousness and judgment are the habitation of His throne!" It was singularly adapted to the mournful occasion, and was expounded and applied with the speaker'’ usual pathos and power. Mr. Whittaker had been a valuable member of his Church, holding a prominent position in the Official Board, and the speaker testified to the variety and value of his services, as well as to the continued faithfulness of his Christian character.
Rev. Mr. Street, of Camden, followed in a few just remarks, and closed with prayer. Almost the entire audience accompanied the hearse to the Mercer Cemetery, where the body was committed to the earth. We seldom see so large an attendance at the Funeral of a private citizen; but it was not beyond Mr. W.’s just worth and merit. Years of liberality and usefulness had endeared him to a large circle of devoted friends; and the noble sacrifice of his life at last, to save the lives of others who were entire strangers to him, won the respect and veneration of us all. Such men are too valuable to be lost; but God is wisest, and His will be done! Our entire community, and true and brave men everywhere, extend their warmest sympathies to his bereaved and sorrowing family and friends.
State Gazette Dececember 1, 1920
WALTER S. LENOX, NOTED PRODUCER OF POTTERY, DEAD
Guided Great Pottery to Success, Despite Tragedies That Marked His Life.
REALIZED HIS DREAM
Walter Scott Lenox, president and treasurer of Lenox, Incorporated, manufacturers of fine china, died yesterday morning at his home, 257 Jackson street, after many years of infirmity. The funeral will take place Wednesday morning with services at 10:30 o'clock at Trinity Episcopal church. Interment will be in Riverview cemetery under the direction of Thatcher.
The death of Mr. Lenox brings to a close the life of one of the most remarkable figures in the industrial history of Trenton. His success was achieved in spite of physical disadvantages that would have been considered an unsurmountable obstacle to a man of less courage and determination.
In 1895 he suffered the loss of his sight and about ten years later he lost the use of his limbs and consequently became virtually helpless from a physical viewpoint. These handicaps, however, were not allowed to stand in the way of the realization of his great ambition, which was the production of china unsurpassed in quality throughout the world.
For twenty-five years he worked toward this end and rarely missed a day at his plant, although he had to be carried every place he went. Of late his health had been declining fast, but he persisted in attending to his duties. When he left Monday evening his condition was such that his associates did not expect to see him return.
He was back at his usual time Tuesday morning, however, and put in a busy day. During the remainder of the week his condition steadily became weaker until the end cam yesterday morning.
The products of Lenox, Incorporated, the fruits of incessary study and tireless industry on the part of Mr. Lenox, have played a material part bringing to Trenton world-wide prominence as a pottery producing centre.
AMBITION CAME EARLY.
Lenox ware now adorns the tables in the White House, the homes of the president of Venezuela and of Cuba and it is used by persons of discrimination and wealth in every part of the world, being generally acknowledged as the finest product of its kind.
Mr. Lenox was born in this city on Centre street and was the son of Hiram Lenox, who conducted a hardware store on South Broad street. While only a mere boy, he was intensely interested in watching the workers in a little pottery located on his way to and from school. He used to spend hours in watching the evolution of common clay into plates and dishes and so while still a youth became fired with the ambition to become a master potter himself and to give to America as fine china as any produced in the world.
Mr. Lenox served his apprenticeship in the pottery trade as an employe of Ott and Brewer and also at the Willetts potter. He Supplemented his practical training with the study of decorating and for several years was a student of Isaac Broome, the well known painter and sculpter of Trenton. He became so proficient painting that he was able to give instruction to others, and finally became art director of the Ott and Brewer plant.
In 1889, Mr. Lenox formed a partnership with the late Jonathan Coxon, Sr., and established the Creamic Art company with a plant at Mead and Prince streets. Five years later, Mr. Lenox acquired the interest of Mr. Coxon and conducted the business alone until 1906, when the Lenox, Incorporated, was formed.
The formula for the production of Beleek was acquired by Mr. Lenox from workmen who came to this country from Beleek, Ireland, where the only ware of this character was manufactured. Using this formula as his basis, he set out to attain his ambition of making the highest grade of china produced.
PUBLIC NOT ENTHUSIASTIC.
For years, his task was marked by constant struggle and disappointment and, although he progressed, he was never satisfied with the things accomplished but kept reaching for higher attainments, his efforts being marked by unfailing altruism and faith in the ultimate realization of his dreams.
He sought the perpetuation of his name by the production of a variety of ware which would be generally acknowledged as being unexcelled. The financial return to be derived from his enterprise was to be but a secondary consideration.
After years of experiment had brought to America china of exquisite beauty, the public was slow to accept it as its true value and it failed to find a ready market because it lacked a foreign stamp. The quality of product, however, gradually came to be recognized and Lenox ware is now in greater demand than can be met.
Up until four or five years ago, Beleek had been used exclusively for ornamental goods, and it had apparently never occurred to anyone that its tender tone was eminently adapted to tableware. Mr. Lenox began experimenting and after much patient work succeeded so well that ware of this character constitutes the greater part of the factory production.
With the growing appreciation of the attractive quality of Lenox ware came a rapid demand for increased production. The result has been greatly enlarged and it now employs 259 workmen of the highest technical skill.
In discussing recently in a trade publication the history of the Beleek Industry in the United States, Sophie Irene Loeb, a noted writer, commented as follows upon Mr. Lenox's fight for success in his work:
"Then to make matter more difficult, in the very midst of his ambition, this latter day potter was overtaken by a great misfortune which would have utterly destroyed the hopes of the average man. He was stricken blind and lame, having only the use of his arms. Yet this calamity could not drive out his strength of purpose and determination to go on. He refused to recognize his infirmities. Even today he disregards them and should you go to Trenton as the guest of Walter S. Lenox, you would find a most delightful host who would talk with you just as though he saw your expression. In spite of his afflictions he continues to direct his workmen and lovingly feels the texture of his ware and superintends the output."
The interests of Mr. Lenox were held almost exclusively by his work, to which he devoted himself untiringly. He was a member of the Country club. He is survived by a sister, Mrs. James W. Johnson, of Chicago, and a niece, Mrs. Caroline Barber-Biddle, with whom he lived.
State Gazette, February 28, 1936
HOWELL QUIGLEY DIES IN 87TH YEAR
Founder of Printing Firm Was Also Prominent In Church Work
Howell Quigley, founder with the late William A. MacCrellish of the book and job printing firm of MacCrellish & Quigley, died last night at his home, 139 Jackson Street, where he resided for more than half a century. Infirmities of age caused his death. He was 85 last September.
Born in this city in 1849, the son of John B. Quigley, chief engineer and superintendent of the Trenton Water Works in the 1880’s, Mr. Quigley learned the printing business and for some time was employed in the composing room of the old Murphy & Bechtel firm of book and job printers. Mr. MacCrellish was foreman there, and in 1875 the two formed the partnership that lasted 40 years.
In 1879, Mr. Quigley married Louisa A. Willits, of Philadelphia. She died in 1907. A daughter, Florence, widow of Raymond W. Cranmer, survives. She lives at the Jackson Street address.
Twelve years ago, Mr. Quigley was seriously hurt when he stepped from his parked car on Hamilton Avenue and was struck by a bus.
Retired in 1914
The first place of business of the MacCrellish & Quigley firm was at 16 East State Street. The print shop grew, and in 1889 the partners moved to South Montgomery Street, in a building since razed for an addition to the Broad Street Bank Building.
Both partners retired in 1914, turning the business over to employes, and in 1922 the reorganized concern moved to its new building on Wood Street. Mr. Quigley had been retired since he withdrew from the printing concern.
A member of First Methodist Episcopal Church for more than 60 years, the deceased was one of the oldest members of the congregation. In 1904, he was instrumental in retiring a large mortgage on the church, and some years later he and William P. Hayes presented a $10,000 pipe organ to the church as a memorial to their wives.
As an active churchman, Mr. Quigley was a leader in the revival campaign conducted here by the Rev. William A. (Billy) Sunday in 1916. He became so ardent an admirer of Mr. Sunday and his work that he visited the Sunday meetings in several other cities, and when the campaigns were too far away for a personal visit, had newspaper accounts of the meetings mailed to him.
On Water Board
Mr. Quigley never held but one political office, and that was an unsalaried one. From 1887 to 1892 he was a member of the Trenton Board of Water Commissioners, which under the old councilmanic form of city government managed the water department.
He was a member of Trenton Lodge, No. 5, of the Masonic fraternity, and took an active interest in the affairs of the order.
Of a reserved disposition, Mr. Quigley was noted for his quiet unassuming ways in business and in his social relationships. He applied this to his charities, and his gifts were made in such a way that scarcely anyone knew of them except the recipients.
The funeral will be held Monday afternoon at 2 o’clock from his home, with services by the Rev. Berryman H. McCoy, pastor of First M. E. Church. Burial will be in Riverview Cemetery under direction of Poulson & Van Hise.
State Gazette, October 26, 1937
BURIAL THURSDAY FOR ADAM EXTON
Prominent Trentonian Is Fatally Stricken While Walking
Adam Exton, leader in Trenton industrial, civic and social circles, who died suddenly yesterday afternoon, will be buried Thursday afternoon at 2:30.
Stricken with a heart attack as he walked from his cracker bakery at 244 Centre Street to his home adjoining, Mr. Exton collapsed and was carried into the house, where he was pronounced dead by a physician, who attributed death to a heart seizure. He was 68 years old.
Mr. Exton suffered a stroke three weeks ago, but had recovered sufficiently to resume his duties as head of A. Exton & Co., a cracker concern established by his uncle, Adam, and his father, John. He had directed the affairs of the company for many years.
Popularly known as "Ad," Mr. Exton’s sudden death came as a shock to friends in every walk of life. His associations and connections were widespread and varied, and he was recognized as one of the best known figures in this section.
A leader in Masonic activities, he was president of the Trenton Masonic Temple Association, which constructed the $750,000 Masonic Temple at West Front and Willow Streets. He had served as head of Trenton Lodge, No. 5, F. & A. M., for several terms, and in addition was a former vice president of the Carteret Club, a director of the Trenton Fair and treasurer of the Greenwood Cemetery Association.
Other of Mr. Exton’s activities in cluded participation in pioneer efforts for a deeper Delaware River, Chamber of Commerce enterprises, welfare work and active part in all Trenton civic and charity campaigns for many years. As a member of the Chamber of Commerce, he was for many years chairman of the committee in charge of the trade body’s annual picnic.
While serving as president of the old Board of Trade, he appointed the committeet which organized the Chamber of Commerce and was instrumental in formation of the latter group.
Mr. Exton was a devotee of the outdoor life, being an ardent fisherman and maintaining a cabin boat at the shore. Of late years he was interested in aviation, making several long-distance flights in airplanes and dirigibles.
Born on Centre Street, he had made his home there all his life. Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Emma VanDuyn Exton; a daughter, Mrs. Euphemia H. Pierce; a son, John; one grandson, John E. Pierce, and three sisters, Mrs. William R. Thropp, Miss Elizabeth Exton and Miss Emma Exton.
The funeral will be held from the Poulson & VanHise Home for Services, 408 Bellevue Avenue, with interment in Greenwood Cemetery. Friends are invited to call tomorrow evening.
The Trenton Times, December 19, 1893
Miss Ann Douglas, an inmate of St. Michael's Church Home, died at the Home on Sunday evening. Deceased was in the 89th year of her age, and was a direct descendant of the Douglas family who, during the Revolutionary War, lived in a house on South Broad street where the German Lutheran Church now stands. Her funeral occurred from the Home at 12 o'clock to-day. Services were held at St. Michael's Episcopal Church, North Warren street.
Trenton State Gazette, June 25, 1928
DEAN OF TRENTON DRUGGISTS IS DEAD
W. Scott Taylor, Sr.
ACTIVE FOR YEARS IN COMMUNITY LIFE
Served as Member of State Pharmacy Board, Also Freeholder
W. Scott Taylor, Sr., dean of Trenton druggists and long prominent among business men of the city, died yesterday afternoon at 3:30 o’clock at his home, Parkside and Carteret Avenues. Mr. Taylor was in his 75th year and had been seriously ill only three weeks past, although in failing health for a year. On Memorial Day he suffered a severe attack of angina pectoris, or heart trouble and despite medical care he continued sinking gradually.
Funeral services for the deceased are to be held Wednesday morning at 11 o’clock from his late home, 36 Parkside Avenue, with the Rev. Dr. John McNab, pastor of Third Presbyterian Church, officiating. Relatives and friends are invited to the service, also Trenton Lodge No. 5, F. & A. M. Interment is to be in Ewing Church Cemetery, under direction of Swayze & Margerum.
Surviving Mr. Taylor are his wife, Mrs. Cecilia Taylor, and eight children, Mrs. Harry B. Salter, Mrs. Clarence W. Sparmaker, Mrs. Charles A. Remsen, Mrs. Harry C. Bebbington, Miss Eleanor C. Taylor, John S. Taylor, Winfield Scott Taylor, Jr., and James R. Taylor.
Mr. Taylor had spent all his life in this city, following early education and training in Philadelphia and South Jersey, and was an active factor for many years in the business, political and civic circles of the community. He was born at Salem, N.J., August 10, 1853, was graduated from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, and spent a few years in the drug business in Philadelphia.
The first store of Mr. Taylor was opened here in 1875 at Broad and Market Streets, wher the Mercer Trust Company is now located. After 11 years there he removed to the store in the former Masonic Temple that stood at State and Warren Streets, where he spent 10 years. The business was then relacated at Perry and Broad Streets for more than 25 years. In 1921 Mr. Taylor removed his drug store to its present site on West State Street, near Warren.
While he visited the business daily for the past half-dozen years, he had left the affairs of management largely to his sons, W. Scott Taylor, Jr., and James R. Taylor, who are interested in the establishment. The Taylor Drud Store was the first structure between Warren and Chancery, along West State Street, to conform with the new building line established by city ordinance in 1921. A modern stone front replaced the old brick construction, while three upper floors were remodeled for office purposes.
Appointed by Governor Leon Abbett in 1891, Mr. Taylor, a Republican, served on the New Jersey State Board of Pharmacy. He also served as director of the Mercer County Board of Freeholders in 1908-09, having been elected to membership on the Board from 1906 to 1910. While he was director, in the early days of active automobiling, a New York newspaper awarded Mercer County a $500 prize for having the best-kept roads between New York and Atlanta.
Mr Taylor was one of the pioneers here in advocating the highway patrol system of maintaining roads in good repair. Another project he favored was the departmental director method of conducting county affairs, with one man in charge of certain divisions, such as is now followed by the present Board. While he later took a less active part in politics after leaving public affairs, Mr. Taylor continued to hold a keen interest in the issues and retained his wide acquantance with public officials and party leaders.
Trenton Times, November 6, 1936
John J. Cleary’s Funeral Monday
Death Ends Distinguished Career As Reporter, Editor and Publisher
The funeral of John J. Cleary, prominent Trentonian, whose death last night at his home, 510 West State Street, closed a distinguished journalistic career of more than a half century as reporter, editor and publisher, will be held Monday morning at 9 o’clock from his home. Solemn requiem high mass will be celebrated in the Church of the Blessed Sacrament at 10 o’clock. Burial will be in St. John’s Cemetery, under direction of M. William Murphy.
Stricken with a heart attack a week ago, Mr. Cleary had been in a critical condition ever since. He was in his 77th year.
As a newspaperman, Mr. Cleary was most closely identified with the development of Sunday publications, the Trenton Sunday Advertiser and its successor, the present Trenton Sunday Times-Advertiser. One of the owners of the former newspaper, Mr. Cleary continued as a member of its staff when it was sold to the Trenton Times almost a quarter century ago. In recent years he was an editorial writer for the Advertiser and head of its book review department. He also contributed a weekly article published under the heading, "Trenton in Bygone Days."
Born in this city, May 24, 1859, Mr. Cleary went into newspaper work soon after leaving college. His long experience in that field and his consequent close association with the city’s development tended to make him an authority on Trenton lore of a half century ago and later.
His seemingly unlimited store of information concerning the history, personalities, customs and happenings of Trenton in the 1880’s and ‘90’s made of his column a meeting place where members of the older generation might gather and exchange reminiscences of the Trenton of another day. Contributions were frequently forthcoming from readers whose recollections were refreshed by Mr. Cleary’s recounting. He was a gifted writer, with a fine sense of balance and special care for exactitude and accuracy.
In 1900, when citizens of the city voted to establish a free public library, Mayor Frank O. Briggs appointed him a member of the first board of trustees, together with Ferdinand W. Roebling, Sr., Judge William M. Lanning, John A. Campbell and Joseph L. Naar. Mr. Cleary was chosen secretary at that time and continued to fill that office until the time of his death.
He had been one of those responsible for the restoration of the historic Trent House on South Warren Street, and a few weeks ago took part in the ceremony marking completion of the work as a WPA project.
A devoted churchman, who for years was active in Catholic circles here, Mr. Cleary came of emigrant Irish parents of the agricultural class. His father, Michael Cleary, was born in County Tipperary, Ireland, and came to America in 1850, settling soon after in Trenton, where he established a steamship agency and a Catholic bookstore at 3 Centre Street.
His mother was the late Margaret Phelan, a native of County Kilkenny, Ireland. The son received his early education in St. John’s parish schools, later Sacred Heart parish, and at the age of 14 entered St. Charles College, Maryland. Four years later he matriculated at Seton Hall College, South Orange, from where he was graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 1879. He was honored with the degree doctor of letters by Seton Hall two years ago.
After completing his undergraduate work, Mr. Cleary took up the study of medicine, but dropped that a year later to follow the profession of journalism, for which he had a strong liking. Beginning as a correspondent in the State Legislature, he represented various New York and Philadelphia newspapers, as well as the Associated Press, during the ensuing years.
In the Fall of 1882, the Trenton Times was founded and he became its only city reporter. He continued there two years and then succeeded Louis C. Gosson as city editor of the True American, with which Trenton paper he remained four years.
In February, 1888, he formed a partnership with the late Thomas F. Fitzgerald and Charles H. Levy, and they purchased the Sunday Advertiser from Andrew M. Clarke. Mr. Cleary became managing editor. After publishing the paper for 25 years, the owners sold it to the Trenton Times.
Was Park Commissioner
In politics, Mr. Cleary had been identified with the Democratic Party, but had no political ambitions. He was a member of the original Trenton Board of Trade and a charter member of the board of directors of the old Mercer Trust Company, later merged with Trenton Trust Company. Governor Franklin Murphy appointed him a member of the board of managers of the New Jersey Home for Feeble-Minded Women, to which post he was reappointed by Governor E. C. Stokes. He was a member of the first board of park commissioners in Trenton and served as president in 1891.
He married Rebecca M. Sweeney, a teacher in the Academy Street public school and a daughter of Police Sergeant Andrew Sweeney, September 20, 1886. Mr. And Mrs. Cleary celebrated their golden wedding anniversary less than two months ago.
Mr. Cleary was a charter member of the old Trenton Catholic Club, past president of the Trenton Historical Society, former vice president of the Trenton Press Club and a director of Trenton Trust Company.
He also belonged to Trenton Council, Knights of Columbus; the New Jersey Legislative Correspondents’ Club, the Symposium, the New Jersey Historical Society, the United States Catholic Historical Society, the American-Irish Historical Society and Seton Hall College Alumni Society.
Pennsylvania Marriage Announcements Collection