Distinguished Citizens of
Excerpts from History of Allegany County
by Williams and Thomas (1923)
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JUDGE OLIVER CROMWELL GEPHART, late of Cumberland, had a life remarkable in many respects. Its span of nearly one hundred years lay within the most wonderful century so far in the world's development. In his own country it reached across almost the entire period of our National life, for in his boyhood a signer of the Declaration of Independence was yet surviving, and he must have seen many whose recollections went back to Revolutionary or pre-Revolutionary days. Himself a man of vigorous intellect and practical ability, he took part in the manifestations of progress going on in his community, maintaining his active relation-ship with business until within a short time of his death.
Judge Gephart was born September 10, 1818, at Charleston, West Virginia, son of John and Eleanor (Marshall) Gephart, natives of Frederick county, Maryland. He was of German extraction, his grandfather, John Gephart, having come to this country from Alsace, then a part of France, in 1732, and founded one of the early families of Western Maryland. Oliver Cromwell Gephart passed his early years amid surroundings vastly different from those of the latter part of his long life. It is notable that, when a boy of eight, he was present upon the memorable occasion of the laying of the cornerstone of the Baltimore & Ohio railroad, July 4, 1828. Charles Carroll was present as the orator of the day, and turned the first spadeful of earth. In 1831 this boy witnessed the opening of the Baltimore & Ohio from Baltimore to Ellicott City. When he died, in his ninety-eighth year, over two hundred and fifty thousand miles of railroads had been built in this country. He was the last prominent survivor of pre-railroad days, and many other marvels of the world's advance had come with-in the range of his experience.
When Judge Gephart first came to Cumberland, in the year 1833, soon after the great fire of that year, it was a small town on the old National Pike, then in its palmiest days as the only public highway from the East to the great West, into which region adventurous settlers were going slowly, Mr. Gephart recalling Henry Clay, William Henry Harrison and David Crockett among the noted characters of the time whom he remembered in that connection. From Cumberland he went to Kentucky for a time, but returned and made his permanent home here, becoming the first ticket agent of the Baltimore & Ohio road at this point. In those days the ticket agent was expected to do all the work about the station, not only selling tickets, but looking after freight, acting as janitor, train dispatcher, and in any other capacity the work demanded. He was holding the position when President Buchanan traveled over the road between Washington and Berkeley Springs. He remained, in fact, until the Confederates put the railroad temporarily out of business in 1861, when he sought other occupation, establishing a dry goods business in Cumberland which he carried on very successfully for several years, retiring from that line in 1869, because of the increasing responsibilities involved in the handling of his large real estate interests. These and other industrial and commercial associations absorbed his attention for many years following, almost up to the close of his life, besides which he had the honor for a long period of presiding as one of the judges of the Orphans' Court of Allegany county. He was one of the first board of directors of the Second National Bank, and continued to bold that position until his death.
In his early years a Whig, he became a Republican upon the organization of the party, and lived to support it for sixty years.
He was one of the first to recognize the possibilities of the coal territory in which he located, and realized well on his investments in that field. His personal experiences in the business world kept him in touch with its steady progress, and he was fortunate in retaining his faculties practically to the end of his days, his interest in and appreciation of latter-day events being quite as keen as in his younger days. He died May 18, 1916, at his beautiful home on the hills in Cumberland, in his ninety-eighth year. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Cumberland, and for many years one of its trustees.
Mr. Gephart married Miss Mary Wagner, of Cumberland, and two daughters were born to them, Mary C. and Susan M., the latter deceased. Mary C. Gephart became the wife of George M. Gillette, and their only son, G. Marshall Gillette, is superintendent of the Consolidation Coal Company at Frostburg. He married Miss Louisa S. Read, of Cumberland, by whom he has three daughters, Helen H. L., Mary C. and Lois Douglas.
JOHN CALVIN GRAHAME, of Mount Savage, is a trusted employee of the Mount Savage Fire Brick Company, and also owner of a grocery and confectionery business in the town, where he is a highly respected citizen and well known in his various associations. Born February 26, 1876, at Frostburg, Allegany county, Maryland, Mr. Grahame is a son of the late Dr. Thomas Jennings Grahame and member of an old Maryland family, being a great-great-grandson in the paternal line of Gov. Thomas Johnson, the first governor of the state, and also related to the Johnson family on his mother's side.
Dr. Thomas Jennings Grahame was for many years a leading physician and surgeon at Frostburg, where he settled when a young man. He was a native of Frederick county, Maryland, and practiced successfully at Frostburg until his death in 1891. He was a Democrat in political opinion, and his religious connection was with the Episcopal Church. To his marriage with Annie Duke were born seven children, namely: Charles Eugene, a draftsman, now living in. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Annie Elizabeth, also in Pittsburgh; Carrie Rebecca, wife of William Hughs, of Pittsburgh; Richard Johnson, living in Cumberland, Maryland; John Calvin; Thomas Jennings, of Pittsburgh; and Edward Campbell, residing in San Francisco, California.
John Calvin Grahame grew up in Frostburg, where he acquired his education in the public schools. He was fifteen years old at the time of his father's death, when he came to Mount Savage and took employment with the Mount Savage Fire Brick Company, which is owned and operated by the Union Mining Company, and with which concern he has ever since been associated. After a year he was made timekeeper, and for the last fourteen years has been clerk and foreman in the yards. He is an ambitious worker, and in addition to his responsibilities already mentioned conducts a grocery and confectionery store in Mount Savage, established in 1911, now doing a thriving trade. Mr. Grahame has prospered by close attention to his affairs and steady habits, and he has the esteem of all who know him for his sterling character and genuine worth. He is a member of St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Mount Savage. Politically he is a Republican in principle, and a loyal supporter of the party, though not active in public affairs.
On October 14, 1896, Mr. Grahame married Miss Margaret Cecilia Malloy, daughter of George Malloy, of. Mount Savage, and they are the parents of eight children. namely: Mary Joseph, Anna Bernardina, George Thomas, Walter Aloysius, Rock. well M., Margaret Cecilia, Catherine R. and Dorothy Clara.
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Josephine (not "Joseph")
GULLAND.-There are certain men who in their own communities are naturally
accorded leadership in public and private enterprises. This industrial
sovereignty is conferred by popular recognition of superlative ability. Varied
talents adapt these few men to certain enterprises of a varied nature, and they
are, therefore, placed in a position to render highly valued service to the
community, while securing for themselves a competence sufficient to their needs.
In this class is found William Gulland, president of one of the oldest and
largest wholesale grocery houses between Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and
Baltimore, Maryland, the firm of J. C. Orrick Son & Company, of Cumberland.
Mr. Gulland was born at Dundee, Scotland, May 16, 1871, a son of Alexander and Elizabeth (Sandilands) Gulland, the former of whom is now living retired in Scotland and the latter deceased. Alexander Gulland, who belongs to an old Scotch family, is the father of two sons: John S. and William. John S. Gulland came to America in 1886 and for many years, until his death of blood poisoning at Elkins, West Virginia, in 1914, was 'a traveling salesman for J. C. Orrick, Son & Company. He left a widow and two children: Frances and Grace.
William Gulland was reared and educated in his native city and late in 1889, when eighteen years of age, left Scotland for the United States, arriving at New York City, where he was employed for about eighteen months.
In 1891 he came to Cumberland, where he secured employment as a clerk in the dry goods store of William H. Shepherd, who conducted his establishment on the present site of the Fort Cumberland Hotel. In 1893 Mr. Gulland became stenographer for C. L. Bretz, general manager of the Western Virginia Central Railroad, and in 1895 left that position to become bookkeeper for the R. D. Johnson Milling Company of Cumberland. After about two years he returned to New York City, where he took a position as bookkeeper for Fayerweather & Ladew, a wholesale leather belting concern of the metropolis, and still later Mr. Gulland was transferred to Boston, Massachusetts, where he was placed in charge of the company's branch house. After another year he was sent to Chicago, Illinois, where he was made manager of the Chicago branch of the same concern and retained that position until 1901, when he returned to Cumberland.
Upon his arrival here Mr. Gulland entered upon the duties of the office of treasurer of the J. C. Orrick Son & Company establishment, a position which he held until June, 1904, when he formed a partnership with his brother, John S. Gulland, now deceased, and went to E1kins, West Virginia, where the brothers organized the Gulland-Clark Wholesale Grocery Company. This enterprise proved a -big success, and Mr. Gulland retained his connection therewith until 1920, when he disposed of his interest to the company and returned to Cumberland. Here he purchased stock in the firm of. J. C. Orrick Son & Company, and was elected president of the concern. Since assuming this office he has made numerous improvements to the buildings and warehouses of the company, has transferred the offices to the first floor in the front, and in other ways has made the plant more modern and attractive, as well as more conveniently arranged. This business is now accounted one of the largest and most up-to-date wholesale grocery enterprises between Baltimore and Pittsburgh, and has the distinction of being the oldest wholesale house in this part of the country, having been founded over sixty-five years ago by James Campbell Orrick. Mr. Orrick was a native of Virginia, who came to Cumberland during the fifties, and became one of the leading and highly respected businessmen of this locality.
Mr. Gulland is a Republican in politics and his religious faith is that of the Presbyterian Church. Fraternally he is a member of Potomac Lodge, A. F. & A. M., Cumberland; Pilgrim Commandery, K. T.; and Cumberland Lodge, No. 63, B. P. O. E.
A glance at the live accomplishments of Mr. Gulland shows such whole-souled consideration and respect for others; such an active spirit of cordiality and true human interest, that, linking these characteristics with his undoubted ability along various lines, the retrospect can but be an inspiration of warm-hearted regard for the man.
On September 19, 1901, Mr. Gulland was united in marriage with Miss Bessie Rebekah Dart, of Cumberland, a direct descendant of Col. Thomas Cresap, of Indian war fame, who was the first white settler in Allegany county. A history of the Cresap family will be found in Volume I of this work. Mr. and Mrs. Gulland have two children: Mary Rebekah, a student at the Hannah Moore Academy, at Reisterstown, Maryland, and Thomas Cresap, a student at Mercersburg Academy, Mercersburg, Pennsylvania.
For nearly thirty years the Gunnette millinery establishment of Frostburg has provided the ladies of this city with seasonable and artistic headgear, and many of the present patrons have continued with this house during its long and prosperous career. Here they know they will receive the best of attention, and that the millinery is of the most fashionable design, and beautiful in color effects. Mrs. Gunnette is associated with her husband in the business, and her taste, like his, is perfect and most artistic.
The birth of Theodore Gunnette occurred at Addisson, Somerset county, Pennsylvania, where he was born on April 11, 1855. He is a son of George and Catherine Elizabeth (Worsing) Gunnette. The Gunnette family is of French origin, and is numbered among the old and honored ones of the Keystone State. George Gunnette was a son of Reese Gunnette, who was one of the civil engineers who surveyed the old National Turnpike, and he was born in Blair County, Pennsylvania. In 1856 George Gunnette brought his family to Frostburg, at which time Theodore Gunnette was only eleven months old. For some years George Gunnette was a wagoner on the old National Turnpike, but later on in life he worked as a carpenter. His children were as follows: Madison, who is deceased, was for many years a contracting plasterer of Frostburg; Theodore, whose name heads this review; Jennie, who married William McCluckey, of Frostburg; Laura, who married George Stephens, of Frostburg; Ella, who is the widow of the late Henry K. Neff, of Frostburg; Lillie, who married Henry Fresh, of Frostburg; Bertie, who married Walter Cook, of Frostburg; and Fannie, who died in childhood. Theodore Gunnette is a Methodist in religious faith. For many years he voted the Republican ticket, but is now affiliated with the Socialist party. Educated in the public schools of his native city, he learned the plasterer's trade, and followed it for forty-nine years, and was an excellent workman.
In 1877 Mr. Gunnette was married first to Miss Anna Cosgrove at Frostburg, and they had three children; Emma, who is deceased, was the wife of F. E. Jones, of Washington., D. C.; Mary, who married George F. Eppley, of Washington, D. C.; and Samuel M., who is a plasterer of Newcastle, Pennsylvania. Mrs. Gunnette died 1885. On August 4, 1887, Theodore Gunnette was married second to Miss Sallie Weems Franklin, of Washington, D. C., a daughter of Thomas Alexander and Margaret Virginia (Dorcus) Franklin, natives of Anne Arundel county, Maryland, a member of one of the oldest families of this State. For over 200 years the families with which Mrs. Gunnette is connected have been connected with the development of Maryland. Three children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Gunnette: Nina Franklin, who married Ralph Neal, of Frostburg, died in 1910; Theodore, who died in childhood; and James N., who is a resident of Frostburg, who volunteered for service during the World War, was overseas in France, and was wounded and gassed at Chateau Thierry.
For the past twenty-nine years Mr. and Mrs. Gunnette have conducted their high-class millinery establishment at 105-7 East Main Street, Frostburg, and are among the best-known people in Allegany county. Mrs. Gunnette is a thorough business woman, and carries her talents and energy into her membership with the First Methodist Episcopal Church of Frostburg. For over thirty years she has been a teacher in the Sunday school, and she has been one of the soprano singers in the church choir and her beautiful voice is a source of pleasure to many. She is a member of a number of benevolent and civic societies, and like her husband is deeply interested in the betterment of her home community.