Thomas Ellsworth Harper

Thomas Ellsworth Harper

Henry County, Ohio, USA
Death 30 Nov 1930 (aged 69)
Harrison County, West Virginia, USA
Burial Weston, Wood County, Ohio, USA
Plot Section BA Row 6 Stone 20
Memorial ID 61595929 · View Source
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Thomas Ellsworth Harper, age sixty-nine, retired yardmaster for the B & O Railroad Co., died Sunday, Nov. 30, at 1:15 a.m. at his residence, 107 Meigs Avenue, Clarksburg, WV . In recent years, Mr. Harper was the lessee of the Annex Hotel, and for the last year and a half, he served as President of the Central West Virginia Automobile Club. The news of his death was a severe shock to his wide circle of friends, as well as, former business and railroad associates.

Apparently, in as good as health as ever, Mr. Harper looked after business matters on Friday, and on Saturday, he gave his attention to his automobile, getting it in shape for the winter. Later, he retired, at his usual time, without complaining of any illness. At around 12:45 a.m., Mrs. Harper discovered him breathing deeply and irregularly, failing to arouse him, she called a physician, who was unable to revive him. A sudden heart attack was determined to be the cause of death, and Mr. Harper expired at around 1:15 a.m.

Funeral services were held in the auditorium of the Masonic Temple by Rev. A.H. McMillan, of New York, and a minister of the International Bible Students, and Rev. Dr. Frederick G. Behner, of Clarksburg, and pastor of the First Presbyterian Church, with Knights Templar acting as an escort.
Officers of the Masonic bodies of which, he was a member, requested all Masons who could attend, to please do so.

The funeral party went by night train, with Mr. Harper's body aboard, to Pittsburgh, switching trains, then proceeding to Deshler, OH. The procession continued, by automobile, to Weston, OH., Mr. Harper's native hometown. Weston Masons had charge of the final rites.

Mr. Harper was born near Weston, OH., Oct. 24, 1861, a son of the late James Harvey and Samantha Williams Harper. He spent thirty years in the railroad service, starting in 1880 as a conductor on the Nickel Plate Railroad, running between Belleview, OH., and Chicago, IL. At one time, his four brothers were also conductors, on the same line, and his father was a baggage agent.
In 1894, he became train-master for the Detroit and Lima Northern Railroad and served, as such, until he went to Clarksburg, WV, accepting the position of yardmaster on Dec. 19, 1900. Mr. Harper continued that position until the spring of 1910, when he retired.

Mr. Harper first married Martha Jane "Jennie" Hartzell, of Elmore, OH. Jennie died in Clarksburg, WV on May 10, 1910. Mr. Harper made arrangements to have Jennie interred near his hometown of Weston, OH. Together, they had three sons, Clarence Edward Harper, who was killed in Clarksburg, WV. in 1902, where he'd been employed as a brakeman. H. Ralph Harper, was their second son, and at the time of Mr. Harper's death, Ralph was employed by Grasselli Chemical Co., and lived in Spelter with his wife, Enid, who was also employed with Grasselli, as a traffic official. The third son, H. Ray Harper, was a terminal train-master with the B&O Railroad, in Fairmont. Mr. Harper is also survived by two grandchildren, Miss Mildred Virginia Harper, of Spelter, a French teacher, at the Victory High School, and Hal Thomas Harper, a senior, at the same school.

On July 9, 1913, Mr. Harper married Virginia Pearl Hupp, of Roanoke, VA. She survives him but, there were no children as a result of this second marriage.

Mr. Harper was survived by two of his four brothers. George S. and Elmore J., both of Belleview, OH. were conductors on the Nickel Plate Railroad, the same as Thomas had been, between Belleview and Chicago. William W., a railroad conductor, died in 1922, and Edward, also a conductor, died in 1912.

At the time of his death, Mr. Harper was President of the Central West Virginia Automobile Club, in which capacity, he'd served since March 1, 1929. He was an enthusiast of both road and automotive affairs. He also took a keen interest in Republican political affairs and was often assigned various duties and served in official capacities, as would be assigned him by various local Replublican leadership and commitees.

Mr. Harper was a member of Hermon Lodge No. 6, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons; Adoniram Chapter No. 11, Royal Arch Masons; Clarksburg Commandery No. 13, Knights Templar, and Nemesis Temple, Ancient Arabic Order of Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.

Mr. Harper had a magnetic personality and possessed an uncanny ability to adjust himself to his surroundings and any given situation. Through his force of personality and kindnesses, Mr. Harper never never lacked for friends or companions. These same traits served him well in his capacities with the railways, as well as, his hotel operation. Mr. Harper's vast experience and intimate knowledge of human nature combined with his gentle, kind soul, extended his friendships, amongst nearly everyone he came into contact. It was always abundantly clear that Mr. Harper stood for all that was good in promoting and maintaining good fellowship.

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  • Maintained by: Jay Whitman
  • Originally Created by: Lavidaloca
  • Added: 14 Nov 2010
  • Find a Grave Memorial 61595929
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Thomas Ellsworth Harper (24 Oct 1861–30 Nov 1930), Find a Grave Memorial no. 61595929, citing New Weston Cemetery, Weston, Wood County, Ohio, USA ; Maintained by Jay Whitman (contributor 47212443) .