|Birth: ||Dec. 6, 1841|
|Death: ||Feb. 21, 1926|
Obituary Daily Hampshire Gazette Tues 23 Feb 1926, pp 1-2
(obituary is 4 columns long, shortened for this biography, but available on microfilm at Forbes Library, Northampton, MA)
Arthur G Hill, 84, Dies in Florence
City's Second Mayor Helped on "Underground Railway" - Led in Civic Progress
Quit the Legislature
Resigned Due to "Vulgarity of Colleagues - City Officials to Attend Funeral
Arthur G Hill, 84, second mayor of Northampton and a leader in the early industrial and community life of Florence, died at his home on Maple street, Florence, Sunday afternoon, after several months of failing health.
Mr. Hill suffered a severe attack of bronchitis early in the winter, but his condition improved for a time, and he was able to be out of doors until a few weeks ago.
The funeral to be held from the home on Maple street tomorrow afternoon at 2,30 o'clock, will be attended by a delegation from the present city government. Rev J. Harry Hooper of the Florence Unitarian church will officiate, and burial will be in the Park street cemetery, Florence.
[List of city government attendees and their positions omitted]
Arthur Gaylord Hill was born in Florence, on the old Austin Ross homestead on Meadow street on Dec 6 1841, the son of Samuel Lapham and Roxanna Gaylord Hill.[Arthur listed his birthplace as Chaplin, CT on all births of his children] His father was one of the founders of the Nonotuck Silk company, now known as the Corticelli Silk company. Ex-mayor Hill was educated in the public schools and at Allen Institute. He attended Harvard university, and later went into the Nonotuck plant, where his father was treasurer and general manager, and in time became assistant treasurer of the company.
Later he assisted in development of the Kelsey Switch company, the Florence Furniture company, the Whitney gun, the Ulrich engine and other activities. Some of these ventures were not successful, and he then became assocated with the late Joseph C. Martin in the manufacture of a cash-carrier, which was later bought by the Lamson company.
Helped on "Underground Railway"
Samuel L Hill's home was a station on the "underground railway"...before the Civil war, and Ex-Mayor Hill frequently acted as "conductor" on these trips, the next station from Florence being in Whately [information about railway, slavery and participants omitted]
Mr Hill served as mayor in 1887 and 1888, succeeding Benjamin E Cook, the first mayor of the city. He was elected on a Republican-Temperance ticket, and was the only mayor ever elected to office on that platform.
Was Captain of Eagle Baseball Team
Just after the Civil war, Mr. Hill was captain of the famous Eagle baseball club of Florence, which defeated all teams in Western Massachusetts and won many trophies. [Other teammates' names and locations omitted; team actually lost 6 games over 3 years]
Mr. Hill was also a prominent member of the old Florence Dramatic club, and was an orator of great ability...He was active in the early history of the Free Congregational Society of Florence, now known as the Florence Unitarian Church.
For several years he was grand secretary of the Knights of Honor, with an office in Boston. He also served as regent of the local branch of the Royal Arcanum, and held high office in the United Workmen.
He was a member of the Florence fire department in the early days, and the flag on the engine house there was at half mast today in tribute to his memory
Resigned From Legislature
Mr. Hill was a man of high principles, and had the courage of his convictions...in 1890, when Mr. Hill resigned from the legislature a few weeks after taking office. This action was so unusual that it attracted the attention of even the New York newspapers. His resignation was precipitated by a debate over the liquor laws, which Mr. Hill wanted amended to permit search of persons as well as places named in a warrant...Rep. Mitchell of Boston moved to amend the bill so that search of a person should not be construed to permit use of a stomach pump to learn whether there was any liquor about the person. The House...adopted the amendment by a viva voce vote, but when a roll-call was demanded, the amendment was withdrawn.
On March 1, 1890, Rep. Hill resigned..."As I cannot retain my self respect and remain in the legislature, I hereby resign my seat as representative from the first Hampshire district." Later, he declared, "Low moral standards and vulgarity in place of argument I do not accept, and do not desire membership with those who do."
[Gazette commentary on matter omitted]
After his resignation from the legislature, he devoted his time to his manufacturing interests, but had retired from business for the past 20 years. On July 7, 1869, Mr. Hill married Kate Edwards of Northampton. Two children survive, Miss Florence Hill, at home, and Mrs. James E. McCullough of Springfield. Two other children were born to them, Annie, who died at the age of four, and Samuel Irving, who died in infancy. Mrs. Hill died on Dec. 20, 1913.
Mr. Hill was vitally interested in both the industrial and moral welfare of Florence, and devoted most of his life to these objects. He was a man of high integrity, and unfailing generosity.
[Tribute of Judge John B. O'Donnell omitted]
Samuel Lapham Hill (1806 - 1882)
Roxana Maria Gaylord Hill (1812 - 1848)
Catherine Elizabeth Edwards Hill (1842 - 1913)
Samuel Irving Hill (____ - 1874)*
Florence Gaylord Hill (1870 - 1930)*
Annie Edwards Hill (1872 - 1878)*
Marion Louise Hill McCullough (1885 - 1961)*
Mary Smith Hill Mann (1828 - 1904)**
Maria Louisa Hill (1839 - 1842)*
Arthur Gaylord Hill (1841 - 1926)
Emily Keyes Hill Learned (1844 - 1923)*
Irving Harris Hill (1846 - 1847)*
Arthur G. Hill/Died/Feb. 21 1926/Aged 84 yr's.
Kate E. Edwards/His Wife/Died/Dec. 20 1913/Aged 71 y'rs.
Florence G. Hill/Died/June 21 1930//
Annie Edwards/Died/Nov. 13 1878/Aged 6 yrs. 3 mos.
Samuel Irving/Died/Jan. 29 1874/Aged 1 mo.
Children of/Arthur G. and Kate E. Hill
Park Street Cemetery
Maintained by: Brian McCullough
Originally Created by: P.K. Magruder
Record added: Jul 07, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 39177454
Regrettably, sir, the tone of political debate has not improved since your departure from the legislature. Thank you for your service to your community.|
Added: Dec. 18, 2009
Added: Nov. 2, 2009