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Marshall, Andrew Cox (1756–11 December 1856), pastor and businessman, probably, was born in Goose Creek, South Carolina. His mother was a slave and his father was the English overseer on the plantation where the family lived; their names are unknown. Shortly after Marshall’s birth, his father died while on a trip to England, thus ending abruptly the Englishman’s plans to free his family. Marshall, his mother, and an older sibling (whose sex is not revealed in extant records) were subsequently sold to ...

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Meachum, John Berry (1790?–1854), craftsman, minister, and businessman, was born a slave in Virginia. The names of his father, a Baptist preacher, and his mother are unknown. A skilled carpenter and cooper, he was allowed to save some of his earnings, and eventually he bought his freedom. Moving to Louisville, Kentucky, he married a slave, Mary, and then purchased her out of bondage; they would have an unknown number of children. About 1815 he moved with his wife to St. Louis, reportedly with only $3 in his pocket. There Meachum used the carpentry skills he had learned under slavery to find a job as a cooper. He established his own cooper’s shop a few years later and began buying St. Louis real estate....

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Woolley, Edwin Dilworth (28 June 1807–13 October 1881), merchant, business manager for Brigham Young, and Mormon bishop, merchant, business manager for Brigham Young, and Mormon bishop, was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania, the son of John Woolley, a farmer and schoolteacher, and Rachel Dilworth. Raised a Quaker (he spoke with “thees” and “thous” all of his life), Edwin Woolley was the eldest of seven children. His mother died when he was nineteen and his father when Edwin was twenty-five, and he was left with the care of his brothers and sisters. In 1831 he married Mary Wickersham, originally of West Chester. The next year Woolley, his wife, and his orphaned brothers and sisters moved to East Rochester, Ohio, Mary’s home. In addition to farming, Woolley operated a general store. Discovering coal under his land, he also engaged in coal mining. A man of unflagging industry, Woolley prospered....