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William Harrison Stanage
IT IS PROPER to judge of a man's life by the estimation in which he is held by his fellow citizens. They see him at his work, in his family circle, in church, hear his views on public questions, observe the operation of his code of morals, witness how he conducts himself in al the relations of society and civilization and are therefore competent to judge of his merits and demerits. After a long course of years of daily observations, it would be out of the question for his neighbors and associates not to know of his worth, for, as has been well said, "Actions speak louder than words." In this connection, it is not too much to say that the several members of the Stanage family have ever stood high in the estimation of their neighbors and acquaintances, for their conduct has been honorable in all the relations of life and their duty well performed whether in private or public life; and that they have ever been industrious never waiting for some one else to do what they should accomplish themselves. One of the best known, most successful and popular representatives of this sterling old Buckeye family, was the late William Harrison Stanage, who for several decades engaged in business on a large scale in the city of Cincinnati, where he was known not only as a progressive man of affairs but as an exemplary and public=spirited citizen.
Mr. Stanage was born August 27, 1840, in West Liberty, Logan County, Ohio. He was a son of James and Sarah (Osborne) Stanage. The father was a native of Springfield, Ohio, and the mother was born in Greenbriar County, Virginia. James Stanage was for many years a successful merchant and honored citizen of West Liberty, Ohio.
William H. Stanage received his education in the public schools of the town of West Liberty, where he spent his earlier years, and when twenty-two years of age he was appointed postmaster at the place by President Lincoln. He gave the people and the department satisfactory service. After remaining in West Liberty until he was twenty-six years of age, he went to Cincinnati and took a position with Willstack, Baldwin & Company, manufacturers of stationery and wholesale dealers in this line. He gave the firm entire satisfaction from the start, having been industrious, wide-awake, conscientious and courteous. He was not long in mastering the various phases of the business and he did much for the general success of the firm with which he was connected for about ten years; then, having saved his earnings, he went into the same line of endeavor on his own account under the firm name of W. H. Stanage & Company. Being ambitious, industrious and scrupulously honest in all his dealings, he built up a large and lucrative business, giving it his close attention. He traveled throughout the State of Ohio, always finding new markets for his products, which were of such superior quality that they were eagerly sought after they had once become known. The business of the company also extended to other States, and at the death of our subject, his son, William H. Stanage, Jr., succeeded to the management of the firm, successfully carrying forward the plans inaugurated by his father, and is still actively engaged in the management of the business, which is constantly growing as a result of his close attention and sound judgment. He was very carefully trained by his father.
Mr. Stanage, the immediate subject of this biographical memoir, was married December 28, 1875, at Huntsville, Alabama, to Jane Clarke Bradley, a daughter of Joseph C. and Isabella (Clarke) Bradley. Mr. Bradley was one of the leading pioneer business men of the South, having been head of the largest cotton commission house in the Southern States before the Civil War, the name of this firm being Bradley, Wilson & Company, of New Orleans, Louisiana. Mrs. Stanage received good educational advantages and she reflects many of the commendable traits of the cultured Southern woman, which have won her a host of friends. She made a trip abroad in 1914 and was in England at the outbreak of the great European war. She was a passenger on the now famous Lusitania, the great ocean liner sunk by a German torpedo boat in the spring of 1915. She returned to America on the Olympia.
To Mr. and Mrs. William H. Stanage two children were born; Mary St. John Stanage, deceased; and William H. Stanage, the second, who married Elaine Sconce, a daughter of George C. and Caroline (Miller) Sconce, of Cincinnati, and to their union one child has been born, Susan Jane Stanage, nor fourteen years of age.
William H. Stanage was a member of the Sons of the American Revolution, his ancestors on both sides having served in the Revolutionary army. Fraternally, he was a thirty-second degree Mason, belonging to the Scottish Rites; he was also a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias, and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. He was socially inclined and liked for his many friends to share his old-time hospitality, and in turn he was entertained by the best people of Ohio and elsewhere, his wit, excellent conversational powers, happy, genial and companionable disposition making him welcome wherever he went. He was an ideal home man, spared no pains in making his home everything it should be. He was an active member of the Methodist Church in his youth and continued so throughout his life. He was also a liberal supporter and attended his church regularly. He was always very active, very attentive to business, which he carefully systematized, his large success having been due to his close application and wise foresight. Being a man of the highest integrity, he could always be depended on explicitly. He was charitable and kind, very courteous and obliging, and when he was summoned to his eternal rest on March 15, 1914, his loss was keenly felt, for he was beloved by a very wide circle of friends and acquaintances.
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