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William Tell Coleman

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William Tell Coleman

Birth
Cynthiana, Harrison County, Kentucky, USA
Death
22 Nov 1893 (aged 69)
San Francisco, San Francisco County, California, USA
Burial
Saint Louis, St. Louis City, Missouri, USA GPS-Latitude: 38.69395, Longitude: -90.227775
Plot
Lot 158
Memorial ID
View Source
Vigilante, pioneer, businessman, 1884 presidential nominee and Borax Soap magnate for whom the mineral "Colmanite" is named. Educated at St. Louis University, he completed a four-year course in law in just two years before heading west to San Francisco California during the gold rush of 1849. Coleman rose from obscurity to sudden prominance in 1851 when he stepped forward with a plan of action to give a fair trial by committee to several men accused of robbery and assault. He was immediately appointed head of this committee, which was later known as the Committee of Vigilance. During its reign over San Francisco, the Committee of Vigilance defied the governing authority and dealt swift justice as they saw fit. The Committee of Vigilance hung four men, deported twenty-eight and was supported by approximately six thousand members with Coleman as its leader in both 1851 and again in 1856 when the Committee of Vigilance was reassembled. Author Robert Lewis Stevenson called Coleman "The lion of the vigilantes" and numerous books have been written about Coleman and the reign of the vigilantes in San Francisco. As a businessman he owned a fleet of clipper ships and a steamship line. In the 1880's he was the owner of Harmony Borax Mine, which became famous for its twenty mule teams, which were used to haul borax from the miles. Twenty Mule Team Borax was a successful marketing campaign and the name is still used today. Coleman designed the original Borax Soap box which featured the image of the twenty mule team on its front. The mineral Colemanite is named for him. The town of Lila C., California is named for the Lila C. borax mine of which Coleman was owner and named this mine for his daughter. Coleman served as president of the Society of California Pioneers, was nominated for the office of President of the United States in 1884, and served president of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce before his death in that city.
Vigilante, pioneer, businessman, 1884 presidential nominee and Borax Soap magnate for whom the mineral "Colmanite" is named. Educated at St. Louis University, he completed a four-year course in law in just two years before heading west to San Francisco California during the gold rush of 1849. Coleman rose from obscurity to sudden prominance in 1851 when he stepped forward with a plan of action to give a fair trial by committee to several men accused of robbery and assault. He was immediately appointed head of this committee, which was later known as the Committee of Vigilance. During its reign over San Francisco, the Committee of Vigilance defied the governing authority and dealt swift justice as they saw fit. The Committee of Vigilance hung four men, deported twenty-eight and was supported by approximately six thousand members with Coleman as its leader in both 1851 and again in 1856 when the Committee of Vigilance was reassembled. Author Robert Lewis Stevenson called Coleman "The lion of the vigilantes" and numerous books have been written about Coleman and the reign of the vigilantes in San Francisco. As a businessman he owned a fleet of clipper ships and a steamship line. In the 1880's he was the owner of Harmony Borax Mine, which became famous for its twenty mule teams, which were used to haul borax from the miles. Twenty Mule Team Borax was a successful marketing campaign and the name is still used today. Coleman designed the original Borax Soap box which featured the image of the twenty mule team on its front. The mineral Colemanite is named for him. The town of Lila C., California is named for the Lila C. borax mine of which Coleman was owner and named this mine for his daughter. Coleman served as president of the Society of California Pioneers, was nominated for the office of President of the United States in 1884, and served president of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce before his death in that city.

Gravesite Details

Interred in Bellefontaine Cemetery 21 May 1894



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