The name of Meriden at once suggests to the average mind cut glass, for there is no resident of the country that does not know that Meriden is the center of the great industry of that character. It is with this industry that William H. Pooley is connected as secretary and manager of the J. D. Bergen Company. He was born in Cheshire, Connecticut, September 12, 1876, a son of James and Mary Pooley. The father died in 1916, but the mother is still living.
After attending the public schools of Cheshire for a brief period William H. Pooley accompanied his parents to Meriden in 1883 and Continued his education in the schools of that city. He started out in the business world as an office boy at a salary of two dollars and a half per week. He was office boy for three years with the firm of Manning, Bowman & Company at a salary of six dollars per week and while thus engaged he studied bookkeeping at night and during his leisure moments. At the age of eighteen years he began bookkeeping for the Chapman Manufacturing Company, with which he remained for two years, and for four and a half years he was with the Morehouse Brothers. He also kept books for smaller concerns at night for some time, and in 1905 he became associated with the Bergen Company as head bookkeeper. This business was established by James D. Bergen early in 1880 under the style of Bergen & Niland. The company began the production of ouster bottles under a working arrangement with the Meriden Britannia Company. Success attended the enterprise from the beginning. After five years J. D. Bergen, seeing greater opportunities before him, bought out the interests of his partner and in 1892 organized a stock company under the style of the J. D. Bergen Company, with a capital stock of forty thousand dollars, which was afterward increased to sixty thousand dollars. The first board of directors included some of the most prominent and substantial business men of Meriden. From the beginning the company made it its policy to place Upon the market popular priced cut glass of a most attractive and artistic design and the product of the house soon won popular favor, which has grown as the years have gone by. In 1906 the company purchased a large five-story brick plant at Center and Britannia streets, which they occupied in March, 1906. Excellent railroad accommodations are secured, for the factory fronts on the main line of the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad and has a private spur track which extends alongside the factory. Each department of the factory is under the supervision of a man specially trained for his particular duties and the result is that the combined efforts of the departments produce an achievement that is notable in cut glass manufacturing circles. When Mr. Pooley first became connected with the business there were one hundred and twenty employes and today there are two hundred and twenty-five. The output is sold in India, Alaska, the Philippine islands, Cuba, Porto Rico, South America, as well as throughout the entire United States. They have their own agency in Japan, but the war has somewhat curtailed European shipments. They maintain salesrooms in New York and in Chicago and have agents in all of the leading cities of this country. Their output is the last word in cut glass manufacture. They produce all that is finest and best in cut glass and the most artistic designs render the product of especial worth. The officers of the company are all men of long experience and the business is upon a most substantial basis, its interests being thoroughly systematized, while progressiveness actuates every department. In 1914 Mr. Pooley was active in the organization of the Consolidated Cut Glass Company, which after six months was merged with the business of the J. D. Bergen Company.
Mr. Pooley has never married but has four brothers and a sister, who are living in this state, namely: E. J., G. M., C. T., G. S., and Mrs. N. F. Kerwin. His brother, C. T. Pooley, is a resident of Hartford.
William H. Pooley holds membership in the Episcopal church. Fraternally
he is connected with the lodge and encampment of the Independent Order
of Odd Fellows and he also has membership with the Benevolent Protective
Order of Elks. His name is on the membership roll of the Colonial Club
and he is appreciative of the social amenities of life. His political endorsement
is given to the republican party and he is progressive in citizenship,
manifesting a public-spirited devotion to all matters of general worth.
Modern History of New Haven
New York – Chicago
pgs 233 - 234
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