|Birth: ||Apr. 11, 1832|
|Death: ||Nov. 19, 1906|
Death of the Hon. A. O. Furst
In the death of Hon. Austin O. Furst Bellefonte and Centre county loses one of its most prominent and best known citizens, and the Centre county her one of its brightest and ablest members. His death, which occurred at just 12 o'clock noon on Monday, came after a period of illness extending back over two years. It is just about two years ago that he underwent an operation in a Philadelphia hospital and, while he was thus afforded temporary relief, he never fully recovered and for the past six months gradually grew worse until death resulted.
Deceased was born at Salona April 11th, 1832, and was thus 74 years, 7 months and 8 days old. His parents were John and Barbara Furst, who came to this country and located in what is now Lamar township, Clinton county, where they became large land owners. The subject of this sketch got his early education in the public schools of that early day, then took a course in the Salona Academy. Under the personal direction of the principal, Prof. H.M. McGuire, he prepared for Dickinson Seminary, at Williamsport, which he entered when but eighteen years of age, and from which institution he graduated with honors. He then entered Dickinson College, at Carlisle, for the purpose of taking a special scientific and classical course but ill health compelled him to relinquish his studies and leave college. Having a natural desire for the law he later entered the law office of his brother, Cline G. Furst, of Lock Haven, where he was admitted to the Clinton county bar.
In January, 1861, he moved to Bellefonte and on the 28th of the same month was admitted to practice at the Centre county bar. Here he lived ever since and in his chosen profession rose to be not only one of the leading members of the Centre county bar, but a lawyer whose talent was recognized all over the State to that extent he was frequently called upon to go to other counties to try important cases. He was possessed of a remarkable memory and gift of discernment given only to the few.
In the summer of 1884 he was given the Republican nomination for President Judge in the forty ninth judicial district, composed of the counties of Centre and Huntingdon, and was elected over his Democratic opponent, the late ex-Judge Adam Hoy, by a fair majority. He served on the bench his full term of ten years but was defeated for a re -nomination by ex-Judge John G. Love.
In his career as a Judge upon the bench he manifested an independence of character from the very first. This was especially exemplified in his rigid enforcement of the liquor laws, notwithstanding the storm of protest from all over the county. But to his credit it can be said that he did his duty as he saw and understood it, regardless of the consequences. While upon the bench he gained for himself the reputation of being an exceptionally able jurist. The very fact that in the ten years he was Judge he suffered fewer reversals of judgment at the hands of the Supreme court than any other President Judge in this district is evidence of not only his clear interpretation of the law but of constant hard work and persistent research into the mysteries of his profession.
On his retirement from the bench he resumed the practice of law and the reputation he had gained in the previous years soon brought to him a large and lucrative practice, not only at his own bar, but from clients in a number of surrounding counties. The last case with which he was closely identified in this place was as counsel for the defense of Green and Dillon, and the strenuous efforts he made to save the lives of the two young men are too well remembered to need recalling here.
In politics Mr. Furst was a Republican and always took a very active interest in the welfare of his party. He was a member of the Bellefonte Presbyterian church during all of his residence in the town and served as an elder from 1863 until his death. He manifested the same deep interest in the study of theology as he did in that of the law and his voice was frequently heard in Presbyterian assemblages in this and other States. Early in life he was a school director in Bellefonte and from 1865-1874 served as president of the school board.
Judge Furst was twice married. His first wife was Miss Mary Frances Sanderson, of Lock Haven, and his second Miss Caroline Watson Chamberlain, of Milton. The latter survives with three children, namely: Jennie W., married to John Curtin; James C. and Walter B. He also leaves two children by his first wife, William S., of Philadelphia, and John S. of Williamsport; as well as two brothers C.G., of Lock Haven, and J.B., of Flemington.
Following the usual custom upon the death of a member a meeting of the Centre county bar was held on Tuesday morning at which the various committees to arrange for attending the funeral, etc., were appointed. Another meeting of the bar was held in the court house yesterday morning at 9:30 o'clock at which a suitable memorial on the life of the deceased was read by D. F. Fortney, brief talks eulogistic of the life and character of the man made by members of the Centre county bar as well as visiting members.
The funeral services were held at the family home on west Linn street at 11 o'clock yesterday morning. The officiating ministers were Rev. J. Allison, Platts and Rev. William Laurie D.D., L.L.D. There was a large attendance of friends at the house but the interment in the Union cemetery was private.
Bellefonte, PA: Democratic Watchman, 23 Nov 1906
John Furst (1785 - 1859)
Barbara Shuman Furst (1791 - 1878)
Frances M Sanderson Furst (1841 - 1877)
Caroline Watson Chamberlain Furst (1845 - 1936)*
William Sanderson Furst (1868 - 1933)*
John S. Furst (1871 - 1955)*
Jane Watson Furst Curtin (1879 - 1934)*
James Chamberlain Furst (1882 - 1968)*
Walter B. Furst (1887 - 1962)*
John Schuman Furst (1811 - 1892)*
Sarah Furst Quiggle (1813 - 1899)*
Lewis S. Furst (1824 - 1846)*
Cline George Furst (1827 - 1907)*
Frances A Furst Trowbridge (1829 - 1901)*
Austin O. Furst (1832 - 1906)
Joseph Brown Furst (1835 - 1927)*
Created by: NkNMOORE
Record added: Aug 23, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 41044874