Trails to the Past

New Haven County Connecticut

Biographies From the Men of Mark in Connecticut
Source:  Written by Colonel N. G. Osborn editor of "New Haven Register" in 1906



FARNAM, HENRY WALCOTT Among the descendants of John Howland, who came from England in the "Mayflower," in 1620, is Professor Henry Walcott Farnam of New Haven. His parents were Henry Farnam and Ann Sophia Whitman. He was born in New Haven, November 6th, 1853.

His father was a man of prominence in engineering and railroad circles, in the days when the foundations of the country's great commercial prosperity were being laid. A civil engineer by profession, he was with the Erie Canal when he was called to Connecticut to engineer the Farmington Canal. He was one of those far-sighted men who subsequently planned the railroad from New Haven to New York, —the beginning of what was to be one of the most important and valuable systems in America. The West, however, seemed to offer still greater opportunities. Removing thither he put through to completion into Chicago the Michigan Southern Railroad, with Joseph E. Sheffield, and built the Chicago and Rock Island, the first road to give Chicago access to the Gulf of Mexico by way of the Mississippi. He was a man of indomitable energy and force of character, and at the same time kindly and liberal. He rose to the position of president of the Chicago and Rock Island, and retired from active business in 1863. Henry W. Farnam, who had been spending considerable time in Farmington, was taken abroad that year to continue his education. After two years in France and four years in Germany, where he was a pupil in the gymnasia at Heidelberg and Weimar, he returned to this country. In 1870, after having had one year at the Hopkins Grammar School in New Haven, he entered the academic department at Yale, where he was graduated in 1874 with a high oration rating.

On leaving college Henry W. Farnam remained in New Haven till he received the degree of Master of Arts, in 1875, and then he went back to Germany, to study economics and law. At Berlin, Gottingen, and Strassburg, he studied under Schmoller, Knapp, Sohm, Wagner, Ihering, and Mommsen, and, in 1878, received the degree of Doctor of Political Science (R.P.B.) at Strassburg.

It has been the rule of Professor Farnam's life to merge his own personality in whatever he undertakes. Economics and political science had won his devotion at the outset, and still more profound knowledge of these subjects has been his ambition since the year after his graduation from Yale, yet he has given of his time freely to the study of art and literature and has granted to community and State the benefits of his ripe scholarship.

When he returned to New Haven as tutor, in 1878, there was no vacancy in economics. Loving Yale with that devotion which has held so many of its teachers against the allurements of sister institutions, he was willing to wait for opportunity to utilize his learning while further prosecuting the study of his specialty. But he was not to be idle meantime. Members of three classes—1881, 1882, and 1883 —remember with pleasure his luminous teaching of the Latin classics. In 1880 came his appointment as university professor of political economy. The year following, General Francis A. Walker, who had held the chair of political economy in the Sheffield Scientific School of the university, accepted the presidency of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology at Boston, and Professor Farnam was immediately chosen to succeed him. With the growth of the university, however, and with increasing pressure of his duties in the graduate department, he resigned the chair in the Scientific School in 1903 to devote all his time to the more advanced courses.

Meantime his practical interest in public affairs had been attested in part by his presidency of the company that published the New Haven Morning News of which Clarence Deming was the editor. Professor Farnam had been financially interested a year when he was chosen head of the enterprise with the purpose of maintaining in New Haven a politically independent journal of high character. The paper did valiant service for the principles represented in the candidacy of Grover Cleveland in the presidential campaign of 1884.

On June 26th, 1890, Professor Farnam married Miss Elizabeth Upham Kingsley, daughter of Dr. William L. Kingsley of New Haven, and the following month he started on a journey to the far East, visiting Japan, China, India, Egypt, and Greece before returning to his classes at Yale in the fall of 1901. He had resigned his position with the New Haven News before going abroad. On reaching home, one of the earliest tasks he found to put his hand to, outside of his university work, was the reorganization of that standard periodical, the New Englander and Yale Review, of which Dr. Kingsley had been the editor for a long period. The name of the publication was changed to the Yale Review, known to-day throughout the world of culture as a quarterly magazine for the discussion of political science and economics. For cooperation with him he selected such eminent men as Prof. George P. Fisher, Prof, (now president) Arthur T. Hadley, George B. Adams, and John C. Schwab, and the publication is increasing in power each year.

Professor Farnam, ever striving for purity in politics and the development of worth, was among the promoters of the New Haven Civil Service Reform Association, established in 1881. He held the position of secretary until, in 1901, the association broadened out as a state institution into the Connecticut Civil Service Reform Association, with him as president. In 1898 he was appointed chairman of the New Haven Civil Service Board by Mayor Farnsworth, and he proceeded at once to organize the department with an aptitude and proficiency which established it as a model for other municipalities. In 1899 he went abroad with his family for a year of travel in Germany, Italy, and England, and resigned his chairmanship. His interest in the subject did not wane, however, for he retains today his membership in the Council of the National Civil Service Reform League.

He has been called upon for practical application of the principles he has studied and always has responded gladly and effectively. As member of the prudential committee of the New Haven Hospital for six years from 1880, and part of the time as chairman; as a director for many years in the Organized Charities Association; as an adviser for the University Settlement in New York and as a member of the Institute of Social Service and of similar organizations, he has contributed liberally of his time and talents toward the betterment of the condition of the people. Professor Farnam has long been interested in social settlements, and when Lowell House was reorganized in 1901, he assisted in the work and was made its president. As the work grew and the necessity for better accommodations showed itself, he secured, in 1906, a piece of property on Hamilton Street and presented it to the association, together with money to erect a new building.

In religion Professor Farnam is a Congregationalist, and attends the historic Center Church of New Haven. His politics cannot be given a party label; they stand first and foremost for the gold standard, tariff for revenue, and the merit system. He finds delight in outdoor life, in wheeling, in tennis, in riding, in mountain climbing, in photography, and in the hunting and fishing camp, and he is a member of the carefully chosen State Commission of Sculpture, one of whose duties is to pass upon whatever works of art are proposed for the capitol and grounds at Hartford. He was made clerk of the commission in 1887 and has been chairman since 1902. His home at No. 43 Hillhouse Avenue, New Haven, is evidence of the refinement of his taste.

He is a member of the Graduates Club, the Country Club, and the Lawn Club of New Haven, of the Century, University, Reform, and Yale clubs of New York, and of the Golf Club and Casino of Stock-bridge, Massachusetts, where he spends considerable of his time in summer. He has three children: Louise Whitman, Katherine Kingsley, and Henry W. Farnam, Jr. Speaking of what tends most to the strengthening of sound ideals of American life and of what would be most helpful to the young in striving for true success, Professor Farnam said: "Form high ideals early. Stick to them. Cultivate industry, self-control, persistency. Think more of your work than of yourself. Bring up your children to do better service than their father."  Men of Mark Index

PROFESSOR IRVING FISHER, among the youngest as well as most versatile professors Yale University ever had, is a native of Saugerties, Ulster County, New York. His father, George Whitefield Fisher, was a clergyman, very optimistic and very benevolent. His mother was Ella (Wescott) Fisher. Among his ancestors were George Norton, who came from England and settled in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1629; John King, who was living in Weymouth, Massachusetts, early in the seventeenth century, and Richard Wescott, one of the earliest residents of Wethersfield, Connecticut. In England the line is traced back to the Cranmer family which included the archbishop. George King, a descendant of John, was a captain in the Revolutionary War.

Irving Fisher was born February 27th, 1867. A strong, hearty lad, his mind was absorbed with outdoor sports in the days when foundations for physique should be laid. Much of this period was spent in the village of Peace Dale, R. I. Under the inspiration of his school teachers and with his fathers books at his hand, the desire to imbibe learning developed itself and he soon had made his way through the high school of South Kingston, R. I. The ambition to go to college was upon him, but with that devotion to thoroughness which was to characterize his later life he determined to make his preparation complete. After having spent a year at the Hillhouse High School in New Haven, he removed with the family to St. Louis, Mo., where he rounded out his preliminary studies at Smith Academy.

Then only seventeen years old, he entered Yale University, academic department. Studies came easy for him, and also honors, from the course and from his fellows. He was the highest stand man (valedictorian) in his class, and this, of course, gave him membership in Phi Beta Kappa. He was elected into Delta Kappa Epsilon and into Skull and Bones. All this time he was dependent for his living wholly upon his own exertions, and to obtain the money to pay his term bills and other expenses he gave up many hours to private tutoring. His favorite reading was mathematics, economics, etc., Darwin's "Descent of Man" not to be omitted. He believes that these books were most helpful in fitting him for his work in life, and as to other early influences he rates them as follows, according to their strength: home, early companionship, private study, and school. He was graduated at Yale in 1888, a man for whom his classmates predicted a brilliant future, provided his body was able to keep pace with his brain; for the long years of study and outside work had taxed his energies to the uttermost. In two years he was back “beneath the elms," as instructor in mathematics. More remunerative fields must have been easily within his reach, but, like so many others who have given their life to Yale there was back of his devotion to learning a love for Yale and all that it stands for. The following year he had earned the degree of Ph.D.

In 1893 he went abroad for a year's study of science in Berlin and Paris. Before leaving he was made assistant professor of mathematics at Yale, a position which he filled until 1895, when he entered the still more congenial field of political science as assistant professor. In 1898, at the age of thirty-one, he was made full professor and took the chair he now holds, succeeding some and associated with others whose researches in political science have brought honor to the University. But at the very moment when he had attained such high position, his health threatened to fail him, and from 1898 to 1901 he spent his time in the gentler climates of Colorado and California. Again, his resolution and his principle of thoroughness prevailed so that when he resumed his work—and under the regime he had established for himself—his associates saw with delight the promise of a long life of usefulness.

Perhaps here we find a reason why he has become so earnest an advocate for more attention to health problems and a leader in the crusade against tuberculosis. In addition to giving much thought and aid to public health movements, he has devised a tent of great value in consumptive sanatoria. He has also invented a "mechanical diet indicator," which is in use among sanatoria, for aiding in the measurement and prescription of diet. And, speaking of his inventive genius, we might also mention among other machines for scientific use one which he devised to illustrate the mechanism of prices, and a semi-cylindrical sundial.

His publications alone are enough to indicate his indefatigable energy. His "Mathematical Investigations in the Theory of Value and Prices," which attracted wide attention in 1892, was followed in 1893 by "Bibliographies of Present Officers of Yale University." In 1896, in conjunction with Professor A. W. Phillips of Yale, he wrote "Elements of Geometry," which has been translated into Japanese. In the same year appeared "Appreciation and Interest" among the publications of the American Economic Association. The following year appeared "Bibliography of Mathematical Economics" in Coumot's "Bibliography of Mathematical Theory of Wealth," which latter work he also assisted in translating. In the year 1897 he produced "A Brief Introduction to the Infinitesimal Calculus," which was translated into German and into Japanese. A revised edition has been issued in 1906. A book entitled "The Nature of Capital and Income" appeared in 1906, as well as articles in the Economic Journal, The Quarterly Journal of Economics, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, the publications of the American Economic Association, the Bond Record, Moody's Magazine, the Journal of the American Medical Association, the American Journal of Physiology, the Outlook, and the Yale Review, of which he is an editor.

Professor Fisher is an independent Republican. He voted for Cleveland on the tariff issue and for McKinley on the gold standard. His religious creed is the Congregational. For exercise he indulges in gymnastics, bicycling, and rowing, and is an ardent believer in physical culture.

His advice to young men desirous of attaining success is: "Invest in good health, adopt hygiene and simple living, with love of outdoor sports and fresh air indoors as well as outdoors. Eat nothing but simple and pure food, and eat it slowly and not in excess. Let hard work always be limited by fatigue. Avoid all poisons, including alcohol and tobacco. Preserve mental serenity. Have a definite and altruistic purpose in life, with an ideal to be and not to seem."

A number of scientific associations have his name on their rolls. They include the American Economic Association, British Economic Association, the American Mathematical Society, the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy of Political and Social Science, the American Statistical Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Washington Academy of Science, the Loyal Statistical Society, the New England Free Trade League, the New York Reform Club, the National Association for the Study and Prevention of Tuberculosis, and the New Haven County Anti-Tuberculosis Association, of which he is secretary; also he is a member of the Graduates Club of New Haven.

Professor Fisher married Miss Margaret Hazard, daughter of Rowland Hazard, on June 24th, 1893. They have had three children: Margaret, Caroline, and Irving Norton, all of whom are living. They have a delightful home at No. 460 Prospect Street, New Haven.  Men of Mark Index

HADLEY, ARTHUR TWINING, LL.D., educator, political economist, and president of Yale University since 1899, is a fine type of the American scholar, who is versed in practical affairs, and is a worthy representative of an old and distinguished family. His careful cultivation of the fine talents which he inherited, together with his earnestness of purpose, high character, clear perceptions, and prompt and efficient action, brought him into prominence in comparatively early life. Among other honors, he enjoys the distinction of being the first layman to be elected president of Yale, which for two hundred years had had a minister at its head. And what is more remarkable, this honorable position was reached when he was only forty-three years of age.

Mr. Hadley was born at New Haven, Connecticut, April 23, 1856. He was the son of James and Anne (Twining) Hadley. His father was a man of warm heart and broad sympathies, a noted educator and philologist, the author of important text-books, and for more than twenty years professor of Greek at Yale. Two of the elder Hadley's brothers were distinguished men, one a professor in a medical college, and the other a professor of Hebrew in the Union Theological Seminary at New York, and later in the Divinity School of Yale. His wife, too, belonged to a noted family. She was a woman of fine qualities of mind and heart. That her intellect was highly cultivated is attested to by the fact that in mathematics she took what was then the full course of study at Yale.

The earliest members of the Hadley family to settle in this country came from England about 1640, and located in the northeastern part of Massachusetts. Among the earlier members to become especially distinguished were the great-grandfather and grandfather of President Hadley, the former of whom, Captain George Hadley, was a noted Indian fighter in New Hampshire, and the latter, James Hadley, a professor of chemistry in a medical college then located in Fairfield, New York.

The childhood and youth of Mr. Hadley were passed in the city in which he was born. His health was only moderately good. His interests were divided between books and play. He had no duties involving manual labor, and had no special difficulties in acquiring an education. After a preparatory course of study in the Hopkins Grammar School, in New Haven, he entered Yale, from which institution he was graduated in 1876. Though he was far from being a recluse, he was a scrupulous student throughout his college course. He took several important prizes along widely different lines and was graduated at the head of his class. His post-graduate course of study was begun at Yale, where he spent one year, and was continued at the University of Berlin where he remained for two years. His special studies in this course were history and political science.

The active work of life was begun in 1879 as a tutor at Yale, which position he held until 1883, in which year he was appointed lecturer. He served in this capacity for three years. From 1886 to 1899 he was professor of political science. At a meeting of the corporation on May 25th, 1899, he was elected, and on the 18th of the following October he was inaugurated president of the university. For a time in the eighties, he was editor of the Railroad Gazette, and from 1885 to 1887 he was the State Labor Commissioner for Connecticut, in which capacity he rendered efficient service, which, with the two volumes of his official reports, gave him a high standing as an authority on matters affecting the rights and interests of employers and employees.

At a somewhat earlier date he had commenced a careful study of the history of railroads and of the problems connected with their administration. The results of this exhaustive study were embodied in a book on "Railroad Transportation, Its History and Its Laws," which was not only accepted as the standard work of its class in the United States, but which has also been translated into several foreign languages. His opinion upon important phases of the railroad question was considered so valuable that he was examined as an expert by the United States Senate Committee, which, under the leadership of Senator Cullom, drafted the Inter-State Commerce Law.

In addition to his regular duties at Yale, Mr. Hadley served for two years, 1891-93, in place of Professor Sumner, who was abroad at the time, as professor of political and social science in the academic department. For many years he has done much to train students in public speaking and to encourage them to engage in debates. He has lectured at Harvard and other educational institutions, has made addresses at important public meetings, and has written largely on railroads, finance, and political economy for cyclopedias and leading magazines and newspapers. In addition to the work already named he is the author of "Economics" (1896), which has been adopted as a text-book in several of our higher educational institutions; "The Education of the American Citizen," (1901) ; and "Freedom and Responsibility," (1903). He is not only a forceful writer and lecturer, but also an earnest and entertaining after-dinner speaker.

Mr. Hadley was married, June 30, 1891, to Helen Harrison Morris, daughter of former Governor Luzon B. Morris, of Connecticut, and a graduate of Vassar College. They have had three children, of whom all were living in 1904. Mr. Hadley has received the degree of LL.D. from Yale, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, and other institutions in the United States, and has also received foreign honors. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and of the Century and University Clubs of New York, In politics he is a liberal Republican, though he believes in free trade, and he sometimes acts independently of his party. His religious affiliations are with the Congregational Church.

He has never given special attention to systems of physical culture, though he plays lawn tennis, golf, and other outdoor games, and he greatly enjoys mountain climbing. In the choice of a profession he was left free to follow his own inclination. The first strong impulse to strive for the prizes of life he traces to a " combination of ambition with the need of making a living." The influence of his mother was very strong upon both his intellectual and spiritual life. Among certain powerful aids and means in his efforts to succeed, he mentions those of home and private study as the most important, and contact with men in active life as coming next in effectiveness. Of the books which have proved the most helpful, he names the Bible, Shakespeare, and Dante, and afterwards Goethe.

In writing and in teaching, President Hadley lays greater stress upon the importance of a " higher standard of industrial and political ethics " than has been somewhat generally accepted in the past. The value which he places upon patient endurance, as a means to the attainment of the highest success, is indicated by the following quotation from an address to the students at Yale: " The achievement which comes through trial and failure is nobler in quality than that which seems to come of itself. Without patience we may have individual deeds of great splendor, but they stand as something separate from the doer. With patience, the deeds become so in wrought into the character of the man that his success or failure in externals is a small thing, as compared with that success which he has achieved in himself. He is a leader to be loved and trusted, as well as to be admired and followed." In language equally clear he states, in the same address, the importance of helpfulness and self-sacrifice on the part of those who desire to be leaders of others and to obtain the highest good for themselves: " Remember that the great achievements of history are those which have been worked out with others and for others, and that this cooperation can only be obtained at the price of patient waiting. Remember that real leadership belongs to the man who can thus patiently feel the needs and limitations of other men, and who has that power of self-renunciation which alone will enable him to compass this result. And finally, remember that, however much you may be able to dazzle the multitude or lead the multitude, the respect of your own conscience, under God, is the one enduring possession."  Men of Mark Index

HAMMER, ALFRED EMIL, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, March 8th, 1858. His parents were Danes; the father emigrated from Denmark and settled in America in 1843, and his mother was born of Danish parents, who came to this country in 1832. His father, Thorvald Frederick Hammer—an inventor and mechanical engineer—was a man of industry and perseverance, with a nature hating show and shams, and cherishing an intense love for America and its institutions. He served as a member of the board of education of Branford for a number of years. Mr. Hammer's ancestors, many of them, were men of note in the fields of art and science.

In childhood Alfred Hammer was a healthy boy, living after his seventh year in the country, where his great love for nature—an ancestral trait—was developed, and where he had opportunity to indulge in his favorite sports of fishing, hunting, and trapping. Although he had his part in the regular routine work of the farm, he found time for reading, the books he cared most for in boyhood being tales of Colonial life in America, and later Emerson's Essays, Beecher's Sermons, Auerbach's Novels, and scientific works, including those of Darwin and Huxley. His early education was acquired in the Branford and New Haven high schools, and Russell's Military Academy of New Haven.

Mr. Hammer decided to follow his father's profession, and began fitting himself for a metallurgist by three years' study under a careful teacher. He began the real work of life in the chemical laboratory of the Malleable Iron Fittings Company of Branford, and is, at present, manager and treasurer of this business. Mr. Hammer is a trustee of the James Blackston Memorial Library Association, director of the Second National Bank of New Haven, trustee and corporator of the Connecticut Savings Bank, and trustee and corporator of the Branford Savings Bank.

In politics he is a Republican, and was a member of the House of Representatives of Connecticut for 1889, and is, at present, serving as senator for the 12th district of his state. He is a member of the American Institute of Mining Engineers, and of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Mr. Hammer is distinctly an out-of-door man, fond of athletic sports, and of fishing, botanizing, and walking. He attends the Presbyterian Church.

In 1887 he was married to Cornelia Hannah Foster (now deceased), and has four children. In 1905 he was married to Edith Rosamond Swan, daughter of Dr. Charles W. Swan of Brookline, Massachusetts,

Mr. Hammer believes that he owes his success in life to private study, home and school influences. Speeches by great men had a distinct effect on his character also, and inspired him to strike out boldly for himself and fellow men. He is of the opinion that young men will follow successful leaders more quickly than good advice; and that those who wish to influence them most must turn their hero worship in the right direction. He would say to young men that "the culture of the finer sides of a man's nature is to be gained by reading great books, and by the study of the lives and words of men who have ideals."  Men of Mark Index

HOOKER, THOMAS, the president of the New Haven Trust Company, was born in Macon, Georgia, September 3rd, 1849, the son of Richard Hooker, a clergyman, and Aurelia Dwight Hooker. He is a lineal descendant of the historic Thomas Hooker, whose part in early American history as a divine and as a Colonial settler and the founder of Connecticut is well known to every American. On the maternal side Mr. Hooker is descended from Jonathan Edwards, the famous early theologian, metaphysician, and philosopher, and also from John Dwight, who came from England to Dedham, Massachusetts, in Colonial days, and from Timothy Dwight, the honored president of Yale College from 1795 to 1817. The Thomas Hooker of today, although he was born in Georgia, came to New Haven at an early age, and has made his home in that city ever since. He prepared for college at the Hopkins Grammar School, and from there entered Yale University. He was graduated in 1869, with the degree of Bachelor of Arts, and has ever since kept in close touch with the venerable institution. He became connected with the banking interests of the city in 1895, and in 1903 was made vice-president of the First National Bank of New Haven-Later in the same year he became president of the New Haven Trust Company. For ten years from 1894 to 1904 he served on the board of education of the city of New Haven.

On the 30th of June, 1874, Mr. Hooker married Sarah A. Bowles, the oldest daughter of the distinguished Samuel Bowles, the former editor of the Springfield Republican. Three children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Hooker, two of whom are now living; the oldest, Richard, is connected with the Springfield Republican and is now acting as its special correspondent in Washington, while the younger, Thomas, Jr., is just completing his law studies. Mr. Hooker has devoted himself to business, and has no social or fraternal ties beyond the various clubs to which a man of his position would naturally belong. In religious views he unites with the Congregational Church.

He has refrained from public honors and his only public service has been his membership of the school board.

Mr. Hooker was a varsity baseball player in college, when that sport was in its infancy, and has ever since retained his love for wholesome outdoor recreation. This has kept him young in his feelings, and as keen as formerly in his sense of humor.  Men of Mark Index



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