Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sunday's Obituary ~ Samuel Sewall Greeley 1916

When my great great grandfather, Samuel Sewall Greeley, died on March 8, 1916, he was the oldest living graduate of Harvard University. A variation of the following brief obituary can be found in numerous newspapers in March 1916.

The Rockford Republic (Illinois), March 10, 1916,
In my collection, I have an extensive obituary from the journal, Engineering and Contracting, (Vol. XLV, No. 11, pp. 23-24. Chicago, March 15, 1916). It is too long to reproduce here, but I include parts of it.

The fact that after he left the Rensselaer Polytechnic School, he was employed in three different states may explain why I've never been able to find him in the 1850 census!

He came to Chicago in 1853 and was elected city surveyor in 1855 or 1856, a position he only held a short time, as he preferred working at his business as a land surveyor.

He was living in Chicago at the time of the Great Chicago Fire in October 1871 and wrote a paper about his experiences during and after the fire.

Samuel Sewall Greeley married Annie Morris Larned in 1855 and fathered four children with her (Frederick C. Greeley, Louis M. Greeley, Lucy Greeley, Morris L. Greeley). Annie died in 1864.

In 1866, he married Eliza May Wells, who died in 1880. He fathered five children with her (Elizabeth S. Greeley, Ann P. Greeley, Henry S. Greeley, Ethel M. Greeley, Ruth L. Greeley). Of these nine children, only four survived him. (Four died as children (Lucy, Elizabeth, Ann, Henry) and one son (Frederick) predeceased him by four years.)

In 1898, he moved to Winnetka, Cook County, Illinois, to live with his daughter, Ethel May Greeley, and son-in-law, Lowell Copeland, my great grandparents.

My descent from Samuel Sewall Greeley > Ethel May Greeley > Lowell Townsend Copeland > my mother > me.

Sunday's Obituary is a daily blogging prompt from GeneaBloggers, the genealogy community’s resource for blogging. It is used by many genealogy bloggers to help them tell stories of their ancestors. 

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