John Spence, who during his lifetime was a well-known citizen and successful business man of Rockland, Mass., was a native of Ireland, born there Dec. 12, 1834, son of James and Mary (Coffey) Spence. Mr. Spence left his native home for America in 1848, in his fourteenth year. He located in Massachusetts and learned the trade of shoemaker, at which he worked in a factory in East Abington, now Rockland, where he continued until 1875. He then started in business for himself, manufacturing heels, being a pioneer in that business. At this he continued for a number of years, and then in 1885 he started in the leather business, opening a store on South street, Boston, and a branch house in Chicago. In 1895 he established the Brockton Leather Company, which he conducted with great success until his death. He was also interested in other enterprises, being one of the promoters of the Rockland & Abington street railway, and serving as vice president and a director of the company during its existence. He was also a stockholder and director of the Abington & Rockland Electric Light & Power Company, and was a trustee of the Rockland Savings Bank until his death. He took quite a prominent and active part in the public affairs of Rockland, was a member of the board of water commissioners, and a member of the Commercial Club. Through his industry and thrift he built up a successful business and gained a considerable fortune. He was a consistent member of the Roman Catholic Church.
This manuscript in it’s basic form is a volume of 948 biographies of prominent men and women, all leading citizens of Western Colorado. Western Colorado in this case covers the counties of: Archuleta, Chaffee, Delta, Eagle, Garfield, Gunnison, Hinsdale, La Plata, Lake, Mesa, Mineral, Moffat, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, Pitkin, Rio Blanco, Routt, San Juan, and San Miguel.
Interviewer: Hazel Cinnamon Person Interviewed: Will Oats Location: Mercer County, Kentucky Place of Birth: Wayne County KY Date of Birth: 1854 Age: 84 Mercer County. Ex-Slave Stories. (Hazel Cinnamon) Interview with Will Oats-Ex-Slave: Will Oats, 84 years of age, was born in Wayne County, up Spring Valley in 1854. He was the son of Betty Oats and Will Garddard of North Carolina. He has three sisters: Lucy Wilson, Frances Phillips that live in Ohio, and Alice Branton of Mercer County, Kentucky. He has two brothers; Jim Coffey and Lige Coffey of Harrodsburg. As a child he lived with his mother,
Rev. James Thomas Coffey, pastor of St. Leo’s Catholic church at No. 2315 Mullanphy street in St. Louis, was born near Jefferson City, in Cole county, Missouri, November 8, 1861, his parents being Michael and Ann (Fitzsimons) Coffey, who were natives of Ireland and came to the United States in the ’40s as children with their respective parents, who made their way direct to St. Louis. Michael Coffey and Ann Fitzsimons were married in the old cathedral by Father Ryan, who was later archbishop of Philadelphia. Mr. Coffey was one of the pioneers in railroad construction in the west and
Oscar Coffey, of the firm of Coffey & George, proprietors of bakery, restaurant and grocery, was born in Pottawattamie County, Ia.; was engaged in farming until locating here in Aug.; 1881, when he established present thriving business.
ANDREW J. COFFEY. Ozark County, Missouri, is well known for the richness of its soil, and among those industrious farmers who have assisted in making this section the rich agricultural district that it is may be mentioned Andrew J. Coffey, who was born in Ashe County, N. C., in 1833, of which State his parents, Cleveland and Susan (Hayes) Coffey, were also natives. During the early boyhood of Andrew J. Coffey, he was taken by his parents to Hawkins County, Tennessee, and soon after to Granger County, where the mother died some fifty years ago. Mr. Coffey remarried afterward and
COL. J. N. COFFEY. This worthy old pioneer deserves the most honorable mention within the pages of this volume, for he has ever been a representative of the honorable, industrious and law-abiding class and has done his full share in helping to make Arkansas one of the most favored States in the Union. He was born in Lincoln County, Tennessee, April 15, 1819, a son of John and Margaret (Boskin ) Coffey, both of whom were born in South Carolina, the birth of the former occurring in Lancaster District. It is supposed that three brothers of the Coffey family came