Armstrong, Henry Bolden


Among New Haven's successful business men of the past third of a century was the late H. Bolden Armstrong, whose sudden death on July 20, 1917, removed a citizen whose activities and influence ever counted for the advancement of the city's best interests. Mr. Armstrong was born in New Haven, October 1, 1855, a son of Philando and Catherine (Bradley) Armstrong, and grandson of John Armstrong, who was a native of Nova Scotia and came to West Haven, Connecticut, when a young man and engaged in farming the remainder of his life. He died in 1840. His wife, Polly Smith, was a native of West Haven, and she died in 1865. Philando Armstrong was born at West Haven, June 21, 1825, and in the early '40s became associated with his brothers. Lorenzo and William, in the grocery business on Long Wharf in New Haven. Later the firm became shipping merchants in the South American and West Indies trade, continuing until 1875. Mr. Armstrong then became asso-ciated with his son, H. Bolden, in the furniture business under the name of H. B. Armstrong & Company and so continued until he finally retired from active business. He died in New Haven in 1907 at the age of eighty-two years, his wife passing away the following year. Their four surviving children were: H. Bolden, Philando S., Ricardo F. and Miss Maud S. Armstrong.

H. Bolden Armstrong attended the Hopkins grammar school of New Haven and continued his education in Captain Stiles French's private school. His initial business experience was in a clerical capacity with the Judson Packing Company of New Haven, with which concern he remained for several years. In 1876 he organized, with his father, the retail furniture business of H. B. Armstrong & Company, which conducted one of the leading stores of New Haven, and of which he was the directing head. This firm continued very successful for over twenty-five years. On the expiration of that period he organized Benton, Armstrong &, Company, manufacturers of folding boxes, on Orange street, thus entering the manufacturing field in which he continued operations for seven years, again meeting with success in his undertakings. He then disposed of his interests therein, and retiring from active business he devoted his attention to the management of his private affairs and so continued until his death.

On the 15th of October, 1881, Mr. Armstrong was united in marriage to Miss Lillian Clark, a daughter of Henry W. and Jennie (Williamson) Clark. The father was a direct descendant of George Clark, an early settler of Milford, Connecticut, and through his mother was descended from Benjamin Fenn, also an early settler of that place. Mr. and Mrs. Arm-strong became the parents of three children. Delora, a graduate of Dixon College, is now the wife of Dr. Frank W. Pitman, of Yale, and is the mother of two children, Frank Arm-strong and Delora Armstrong Pitman. H. Bolden, Jr., who was graduated from Yale in 1913, is connected with Sargent & Company.    He married Miss Mabel Finley, of New Haven. Lillian Clark is now attending Wellesley College.

Mr. Armstrong was an earnest Christian gentleman, holding membership with the United Congregational church, and he also belonged to the New Haven Colony Historical Society and the Country Club.

Modern History of New Haven
Eastern New Haven County


Volume II

New York Chicago
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company 

pgs 344 - 345

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Elaine Kidd O'Leary & 
Anne Taylor-Czaplewski
May 2002