Biography of Stephen S. Glidden

STEPHEN S. GLIDDEN. – Spokane Falls, Washington, has been fortunate in possessing from the first business men accustomed to large enterprises. Such a man is Mr. Glidden. He was born in Northfield, New Hampshire, in 1829, and at the early age of two years removed with his parents to Scotia county, Ohio. Upon reaching a few more years, he was taken back by his mother to his native state to enjoy educational advantages. Returning s a youth of eighteen to Ohio, he entered the store of the iron company with which his father and uncle were connected. Upon their purchase of the Clinton furnace, he was made book-keeper and cashier, and within two years became general manager, employing several hundred men. Here he received a practical education in large affairs, which solidified his business character. Two years more and he became partner in the firm of Glidden, Crawford & Co.

In 1855 he found a partner for his domestic life in Miss Sue M. Garrett, grand-daughter of John Culbertson. They have had seven children, of whom two are deceased. Miss Jangio became the wife of Geo. W. James of St. Paul, Minnesota. Miss Jessie Duncan married Mr. Frank R. Culbertson of the Tiger mine, Idaho. Harry M., Steven C. and Sue Garrett are still with their parents.

Mr. Glidden’s independent mining operations became very extensive. With Cawbridge, Culbertson and J.C. Garrett he bought the La Grange Iron Works in Tennessee, which embraced eighty thousand acres of mineral and timber land. Here he built the Clark and Eclipse furnaces. As president and manager of this company, he rebuilt the Clark and La Grange furnaces, and operated them until 1872. In this year he transferred his interests to Evansville, Indiana, and the next year organized the Alabama Iron Company, of which he became president, and built and operated the Alabama furnace, where was made the celebrated Clifton car-wheel iron.

Tiring somewhat of Southern life, and desiring to begin a new business in the West, he went to St. Paul, Minnesota, and organized the wholesale grocery of Glidden, Briggs & Co. In the spring of 1884 he went out to Thompson Falls, Montana, to establish a branch house for the firm. This was the year of the Coeur d’Alene excitement; and, foreseeing the great future awaiting the development of this mineral belt, Mr. Glidden at once appeared upon the scene and purchased the Tiger mine. He returned to St. Paul only to close out his interest in the mercantile establishment, and removed with his family to Spokane Falls, and has here been actively engaged in developing his mine. He belongs to that class of careful and substantial managers who are changing the mining methods of the old haphazard, happy-go-lucky style of days gone by so as to make it one of the exact industries.



History of the Pacific Northwest Oregon and Washington. 2 v. Portland, Oregon: North Pacific History Company. 1889.

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