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Hartford County, CT

Hartford Bridge 
Souvenir Number, American Enterprise, October 6, 7, 8, 1908 
Greater Hartford, 1818-1908 

(Transcribed by Donna Crawford)
Miles Barber PRESTON is a native of Simsbury, born May 9, 1850. He received his education in the public school there, supplemented by a term in the private school of the late Rev. O.S. Taylor. He early learned the trade of ornamental painting in his father's shop and at the age of 19 removed to Hartford, entering the employ of the old Hartford, Province and Fishkill Railroad company, following here the same occupation for five years. He then engaged in business for himself, soon taking into partnership Benjamin W. Kenyon, a portrait painter; and at the present day the firm of Preston & Kenyon stands at the head of Hartford firms in this line of business. Mr. Preston is also at the head of the Bonner-Preston CO., dealers in paints, papers, artists' materials and photographic supplies, also the leading firm of the kind in the capital city. by heredity and preference the subject of this sketch is a Democrat and has filled several political positions at the hands of his party honorably and well. He was for several years deputy United States Marshall in the state, retiring in 1890 To accept the office of sheriff of Hartford County, holding his for four years. In 1896 he became mayor of Hartford and was re-elected in 1898, declining to have his name used for a third term. His record was eminently creditable to himself and satisfactory to his constituents. Mr. Preston has also served as a member of the bridge commission and the police board. In social life the ex-mayor is both prominent and popular. He belongs to the higher orders of Masonry in the city, holding membership in the Pythagoras Chapter and Washington Commandery, K. T., besides in the Amos Beecher Lodge, F.& A. M. of New Hartford. He is also a Past Chancellor of Washington Lodge, K/ of P., a member of Hartford Lodge of Elks and of Trumbull Council, National President Union. Mr. Preston was twice married. His present wife was Miss Nellie F. Dole of Springfield, Mass. They have one child, a daughter. In religion Mr.. Preston is a Methodist, and a member of the First M.E. Church of the city. He is also connected with the Y.M.C.A.

William Joseph TURNER is a native of Hartford from the cradle up, arriving in the Capital city July 16, 1874. He secured his education in the public schools, the Hartford High school and the old Hannum Business college. After leaving his studies he entered the office of A. W. Scoville, the builder, as an accountant, where he remained for one year, when he took up the business left by the death of his father, that of a wholesale wine and liquor merchant. Mr. Turner has conducted the business left him by his father for over 16 years, adding to it each year, so that today he is doing a very prosperous and thriving trade. Mr. turner is married to Miss Mary Gertrude of Meriden. He is a member of Lafayette Lodge of Masons and independent in his politics. Personally, Mr. Turner is of a quiet disposition, careful in the minding of his own business and avoids much trouble in so doing. His place of business is located at 44 and 46 Union Place and 204 Allyn Street, Hartford.

John Marshall  NEY of Hartford, is an honored citizen of the Capital city. He was born in Loraine, France. He is at the head of the firm of "John M. Ney & Co." situated on Asylum street, manufacturers in the precious metals, whose products have a world wide reputation. In politics Mr. Ney is a Democrat and of truly democratic feeling and tendencies, with nothing of the "machine" characteristics about him, ever ready to serve the best interests of his party by any reasonable sacrifice he may be called upon to make, and this, too, without the desire or expectation of material personal return or reward. In 1874, Mr. Ney was elected a member of the board of assessors, serving three years, but declining longer service in this department. He was elected to the board of aldermen in 1876 for two years, and from the then strongest Republican ward in the city, the honor coming to him on account of his character for political honesty and conscientious citizenship. Here he was elected president pro tem of the board, acting mayor and chairman of the committee on ways and means for the full term. In this latter capacity, after auditing and correcting some irregularities in the collector's office, he was appointed collector of the town, city and school taxes for an interim of ten months, during this time devising and perfecting the full and comprehensive system of bookkeeping since employed. He was elected in 1878 chairman of the West Middle school district, holding the position some eight years and declining further election. In 1903 Mr. Ney was a senator from the old First district, at that time comprising the whole city of Hartford, in this contest defeating the Republican candidate by a plurality of 1600, although the rest of the Republican city ticket was generally successful. In this session he was chairman of the committee on capital, furniture and grounds and on committee manual and roll, and executive nominations. In the state campaign of 1904 Mr. Ney was nominated as candidate for treasurer and ran well ahead of his ticket, and in the late campaign of 1906 was nominated for lieutenant-governor. In religion Mr. Ney is a member of Asylum Hill congregational church, and was chairman of the committee in charge of the building of the parish house, completed at a cost of $25,000, and built to the satisfaction of the parishioners, within the appropriation, and handed over without incumbrance.

Charles G. HUNTINGTON, advertising manager of the Electric Vehicle company, is a native of Hartford. After graduating at the public high school he entered the employ of the Connecticut River Banking company, where he remained several years as bookkeeper. In 1898 he became connected with the advertising department of the Pope Manufacturing company and in 1900 went with the Electric Vehicle company. Mr. Huntington has been interested in educational and political matters and has always been a conservative Democrat. In 1900 he was appointed police commissioner by Mayor Harbison, serving for three years, and at the expiration of his term was appointed fire commissioner by Mayor Henney. Owing to the pressure of other duties, he resigned from the fire board after a year of service. He was for four years chairman of the Northwest school district committee, and on removing to the South district in 1897 he became a member of the committee of that school and has since been re-elected annually. In the days when the bicycle was most popular Mr. Huntington took an active interest in organizing cycling affairs and was for two years chief consul of the League of American wheelmen of Connecticut. He is the author of the Road Book of Connecticut, which went through several editions. He is a member of the Hartford Lodge of Masons. In 1896 he married Miss Mabel Grover, daughter of C. Grover, president of the Colt's Patent Fire Arms company. Mr. Huntington resides on Wethersfield Ave.

(Transcribed by Bill Benton)
Charles Watson VIBERT is a native of the town he has the honor to represent in the Legislature. He is the son of Joseph Watson and Eveline (Clark) Vibert and was born October 20, 1851. He received his education in the public schools of his native town. On April 5, 1876, he married Miss Mary Elizabeth King, daughter of Henry Mosely and Frances (Forbes) King. Mrs. Vibert is deceased. They had three children: Emma, born February 17, 1877; Frances, born October 5, 1881; Eveline, born November 28, 1886. Mr. Vibert is a progressive farmer and an active Republican. He has creditably held several town offices: First Selectman in 1898, 1899,1900; School Committee, Sealer of Weights and Measures from 1904 until 1907; Seine Inspector from 1904 until 1907. Mr. Vibert has been treasurer of Evergreen Lodge, No. 114, A. F. & A. M., since 1893. He served on the committee on Fisheries and Game.

Joseph Lester NEWTON was born in Hartland, July 20, 1837, the second son among the five children of Lester Newton, and in boyhood he attended school in his native town. He was brought up on a farm and his schooling was supplemented by a course of instruction in the famous Suffield Institute. In 1870 he removed to East Hartford and about ten years later he located in South Windsor. He lived for about a quarter of a century in the house in which he died, on July 3, 1907. Mr. Newton was among the most successful and also most extensive growers of broad leaf tobacco in this part of the Connecticut valley. He was engaged in the culture of some thirty-seven acres of that kind of "the weed." Year after year his crop was nearly perfect and in weight, color and quality it was widely famed. Mr. Newton was a dealer in fertilizer and as grower and fertilizer merchant he was known personally or by reputation to nearly every progressive grower of tobacco in the county. He was also a great lover of horses. He was closely attached to his home and farm. He married Miss Julia Richmond of Hartland, by whom he had two children, a boy now dead, and a daughter, Miss Maude L. His religious turn was toward the Congregational denomination. His beliefs were liberal. He was a member of Evergreen Lodge, No.114, A. F. and A. M., of South Windsor and he rose to the thirty-second degree of free masonry. He had also joined the Putnam Phalanx.

Andrew C.  REARDON was born in Collinsville, Conn., March 25th, 1869, and removed to South Windsor in April, 1870, where he has resided continuously since. His education was acquired in the public schools of South Windsor and the Second North school of East Hartford and a business course at a Hartford business college. Mr. Reardon is a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church, East Hartford. He is a member of various fraternal societies (in which he is well, and popularly known), viz., an ex-member of Volunteer Hose Co., East Hartford, a charter member of Division 1, A. O. H., their first recording secretary and later president, which offices he held for several terms. He has also been county treasurer of the Hibernians for Hartford county. He was also a charter member and first recording secretary of Court Raymond, Foresters of America. Other societies in which he holds membership are Camp Excelsior, Modern Woodmen of America of East Hartford; Hartford lodge No. 19, Benevolent and Protective order of Elks, and charter Oak council, Knights of Columbus of Hartford. Mr. Reardon has always taken an active and prominent part in politics, being repeatedly sent as delegate to the different state and county conventions of the Democratic party with which he is affiliated. His first office held was that of Assessor, which he filled for several terms, being elected at the age of 21. He has also at different times held the offices of Board of Relief, Grand Juror, Justice of Peace and School Committeeman, and for a number of years has been chairman of the Democratic town committee. Mr. Reardon was married in May 1897, to Miss Julia A. McGann of South Manchester. Five children are the result of the union, Francis, Paul, Mary, Alice and Margaret.

Edwin Dwight FARNHAM was born in East Hartford, January 22, 1844, in the house now occupied by John H. Burnham. He was the second son of Augustus and Persis S. Farnham. He attended district schools in East Hartford and South Windsor. August 22, 1862, he enlisted in Company G, Twenty-fifth Connecticut Volunteer Infantry. He served in General N. P. Bank's army corps in the department of the Gulf. After his mustering out he took charge of a farm in South Windsor. Tobacco he selected as his principal crop, and he succeeded remarkably well in its culture. Prices were high for a number of years and many growers prospered. In 1875 he began to solicit trade from cigar manufacturers. From that time up to 1902 he continuously bought and packed leaf tobacco. In the later year ill health compelled him to take a trip and he was away from home a considerable time. Since that year, his son, Wallace has been in charge of his business. He has enjoyed an enviable reputation in the leaf tobacco trade for having a fine line of goods. Mr. Farnham has twice married. His first wife was Miss Martha J. E. Abbey, by whom he had three sons, one of whom, Wallace S., survives. In 1894 he married Miss Sarah E. Tudor of South Windsor. In politics Mr. Farnham is independent. He describes himself as "Democrat, sometimes; Republican, sometimes." He is a member of neither party in the town, but he possesses the confidence of each and has filled town offices with credit and success. For several years he was a member of the board of school visitors and for about six years he was an assessor of the taxable property of the town. Strictly speaking, he is a member of no church, but has attended worship in Congregational and Episcopal churches to some extent. He is a member of Rodman Post, No. 65, G.A.R. He also belongs to Evergreen Lodge, No. 114, F. A. and A. M., and Washington Commandery, No. 1, K. T. He is interested in Indian History and has a fine collection of Indian relics.

Olcott Frederick KING is a native of South Windsor, born here January 9, 1978. He was educated in the district schools of the town and graduated from the Connecticut Agricultural College in 1896. After his college term ended he secured employment as a clerk in the Aetna National bank Hartford, where he served faithfully for two years, when he took up farming with his father who is one of South Windsor's leading and prosperous citizens. In 1903 Mr. King was elected town clerk and served two years. In 1904 he was elected as a member of the General Assembly and was one of the youngest members in that law making body. In 1900 the subject of our sketch was selected by the Democratic party of his senatorial district, as its candidate for senator, and his popularity was shown by the great run he made against his opponent, Senator Grant of the same town. He has held the office of town auditor, member of school committee and paymaster of the Connecticut National Guard with rank of captain. Mr. King married Miss Bertha Brigham Hayden and one child is born to the couple. He is a member of the Episcopal church and like his father a true-blue Democrat.

Leslie N. NEWBERRY is a native of South Windsor, residing there since his birth, May 7, 1872. He graduated from Yale law school with honor, in 1893, when he was admitted to the bar and has continued in the practice of his profession to the present time, now being a member of the law firm of Newberry and Goodman, with offices at 50 State Street, Hartford. He is independent in his political views. From time to time he takes a lively interest in the affairs of his town. The present fine Union District school building is the result of his energy and efforts. In the practice of his profession Mr. Newberry is governed by high ideals, and has the respect and good will of his associates

Dennis REARDON was born in County Cork, Ireland, some 68 years ago. When a young man, hearing much of the greatness of America, he started for New York and arrived there on the morning of the death of President Lincoln. His idea was to enlist in the army and fight to free the slaves in the war of the rebellion, but the death of Abraham Lincoln changed his mind. He came to South Windsor and engaged himself the late David Tudor. For 41 years, with a brief exception of six months, he has been employed in or has resided here. He is known as an upright, honest man and citizen, and accumulated a large property, one of his holdings being the homestead of Col. Albert Drake of the 10th C. V., whose family merge with that of Mrs. Reardon back a few generations in the old country.

Judge Ralph M. GRANT was born in Wapping May 11,1868, the son of Sheldon J. Grant. He graduated from the Hartford High School in 1887 and from the Wesleyan University in 1802. He maintained a particularly high standing in political economy and was an editor of the Olla Podrida, the university students' annual publication. He read law for two years in the office of Judge William J. McConville and was admitted in 1894 to the county bar. He has an office in the Sage, Allen building and on Saturdays and Mondays is at his local office in East Windsor Hill. In the fall of 1894 he was elected judge of the probate court of the district of East Windsor. The following year he was elected town clerk and town treasurer. He has been honored with numerous re-elections to one and another of these various offices. He has also been many times elected a justice of the peace. In 1906 he was elected to represent the Fourth Senatorial District and in the legislature he took a prominent and active part. He was chairman of the committee on claims, chairman of the committee on judicial nominations, chairman of that on state library, and was a member of the committees on contested elections and on insurance. Senator Grant had a conspicuous part in many debates and was considered convincive and able in speaking. He has been active in the work of the Grant Family Association. He is a member of the South Windsor Congregational church and has been superintendent of its Sunday school. He is a Mason and has joined the Royal Arcanum. He married Miss L. Lillian Shepard of Melrose Highlands, on May 1, 1895 and has five bright children.

William B. PARMELEE was born in East Windsor Hill, March 3, 1861, and was educated in the public schools of the town. He has followed the grocery business for a number of years at his present stand and is known well and favorably for miles around for his honesty and square dealing. He was appointed postmaster in 1896 under the Republican administration of President McKinley and has filled the position to the entire satisfaction of the people ever since. He is married to Miss Etta A. Alexander and is the father of one child, a daughter. He attends the Baptist church, is a member of Evergreen Lodge of Masons, and has been its secretary for the past 18 years. Mr. Parmelee has the honor of being Commodore of the Scantic Boat club. In his relations with the people, Mr. Parmelee stands high and is worthy of their esteem, for he is a man of good qualities, both of head and heart.

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