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Edwards, Richard; Hopewell, M.; Ashley, William; Barry, James G.; Belt and Priest; Casey, John; Hall, W.; Labaum, Louis A.; Leduc, Mary Philip; Lisa, Manuel; O'Fallon, Benjamin; Piernas; Port Folio; Risley, W.; Stoddard, Amos; Williams, Henry W.; Yore, John E. Edwards's Great West and Her Commercial Metropolis, Embracing a General View of the West, and a Complete History of St. Louis, from the Landing of Ligueste, in 1764, to the Present Time; with Portraits and Biographies of Some of the Old Settlers, and Many of the Most Prominent Buisiness Men . St. Louis: Office of Edwards's Monthly, A Journal of Progress, 1860. [format: book], [genre: biography; history; letter; narrative]. Permission: St. Louis Mercantile Library
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=edwards.html


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George Partridge.

THE subject of this memoir was born March 27, 1809, at Walpole, Massachusetts. He was the son of honorable parents, who still are living at Templeton, in the state of Massachusetts. His father, Ezekiel Partridge, was a farmer, and George, who was one of twelve children, was early initiated in the mysteries of agriculture, and faithfully assisted his father in the cultivation of the farm till he was seventeen years of age, a small portion of time being given to his education. He had time to go to the country school in the winter — the rest of the year was devoted to hard work. When he arrived at the age of seventeen, being anxious to commence a start in life, he taught a little school during two winters, by which he earned a few extra dollars.

In 1828, an unexpected misfortune diminished very much the resources of his father, and George Partridge had to sever himself from parental guiding-strings, and seek a livelihood in the world among strangers. Though brave at heart, and early confident in himself, it was not without a full heart and moistened eye that he took leave of the parental roof, and went to Boston to seek his fortune. His cash capital on reaching Boston amounted to thirteen dollars, and consequently he could not delay in selecting what to do, as his means would soon become exhausted. He must commence work at once, or starvation would be the result; so he commenced, as the quickest mode of turning over his capital, the sale of books and papers, and also procuring subscriptions for the same. This was an almost starving occupation, and young George Partridge soon forsook it, when he was offered a situation in a grocery store, at a salary of fifty dollars a year and board. He remained in that employment for some time, and finding that, with all his economy, he could scarcely save enough to purchase his clothes, he resolved to start, if possible, in business himself, if he could get credit for his stock of goods. His industry, honesty, and attention to business had been noticed by business men, and he found no difficulty in procuring credit, and started his fortunes with a stock of goods, and a store at four hundred dollars rent, in which first investment he was very fortunate. He remained at that time in the grocery business eight years, the last years of the time engaged solely in the wholesale trade.

All who have reached the meridian of life must recollect the terrible financial crisis which visited the country in 1837, and swept from existence in the business world firms which before appeared to possess all the elements of healthful endurance. Amid the business prostration which was everywhere around him, George Partridge stood unmoved by the shock. His neighbors suspended payment, but he was always ready to cancel his debts.

It was the custom of groceries in those days, as now, to do a large liquor business, which formed the most lucrative portion of the trade, and finding if he did not sell that important article in Boston, that he could not keep

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pace with other grocers, Mr. Partridge sold out in June, 1838, and resolved on trying his fortunes in the Far-west.

After leaving Boston he went to Burlington, a thriving town in Iowa, where he established a large grocery house, which went under the name of Bridgeman & Partridge, and did a lucrative business. Whilst in Iowa Mr. Partridge made an effort to establish a Unitarian society, but there were too few of that popular sect in Burlington and its vicinity to form a congregation, so the project was unsuccessful. Thriving as the town of Burlington is, Mr. Partridge wanted an ampler field, so he came to St. Louis, and bought a copartnership in the firm of Smith and Brother, and commenced the grocery and commission business, under the firm of Partridge & Company, and one of the conditions of the partnership expresses that no alcoholic liquor is to be sold.

Mr. Partridge has been twice married. In March 27, 1834, he was married to Miss Elmira Kenney, and on January 6, 1858, to Mrs. Clarace C. Cotter of Boston. From a long course of successful business pursuits, he has won for himself the confidence of all business men, and filled many important positions. He is a director in the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad, also one in the State Saving Association, and was one of the Board of Public Schools, which he held for five years; took an active part in the building of the Unitarian Church; one of the trustees of Washington University, and most efficient in procuring the erection of the new Female Institute, the Mary Academy, to be connected with it; and is connected in divers ways with other institutions.

The charity of Mr. Partridge is munificent and unostentatious, and when one of the eleemosynary institutions of our city was in debt five hundred dollars, he paid the amount out of his own pocket, without requiring the public journals to sound the charity in their thousands of distributions. He is now approaching the "sear and yellow leaf" of life, but he is surrounded with troops of friends.

In March 31, 1859, the parents of Mr. Partridge celebrated at his house their "golden wedding," having been married fifty years, and lived happily in that relationship.

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Edwards, Richard; Hopewell, M.; Ashley, William; Barry, James G.; Belt and Priest; Casey, John; Hall, W.; Labaum, Louis A.; Leduc, Mary Philip; Lisa, Manuel; O'Fallon, Benjamin; Piernas; Port Folio; Risley, W.; Stoddard, Amos; Williams, Henry W.; Yore, John E. Edwards's Great West and Her Commercial Metropolis, Embracing a General View of the West, and a Complete History of St. Louis, from the Landing of Ligueste, in 1764, to the Present Time; with Portraits and Biographies of Some of the Old Settlers, and Many of the Most Prominent Buisiness Men . St. Louis: Office of Edwards's Monthly, A Journal of Progress, 1860. [format: book], [genre: biography; history; letter; narrative]. Permission: St. Louis Mercantile Library
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=edwards.html
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