Wednesday, January 30, 2013

From Rags to Riches
I am part of "Workday Wednesday" at Geneabloggers today.  They also posted about this blog on their Geneabloggers board at pinterest.

From Rags to Riches, it would appear was the direction Stephen was heading.  At least it looked possible after literally sleeping on the ground and in his clothes for months, he would better his lot in life.
This is the report of the investors named in The Articles of Agreement.  Stephen Sherwood probably was not personally acquainted with most of the investors, but it was interesting to find out about them.  I tried to make the resumes on the investors as brief as possible.  Additional information can be obtained by clicking the orange words.  Twenty-four people were listed as investors in the Article of Agreement.  They invested a total of $20000 in 1867.


If I had to answer to the Chief Executive Officers of the Sherwood Silver Mining Company, I would have looked more for pictures--especially of the President, Marcus Davis Gilman ($1500).  (the amount invested in the company is in parenthesis for each investor)  He was a very successful businessman in Chicago for 23 years.  In 1855 his residence was described as the most costly and in many respects the most elegant in Chicago.  M D Gilman was also  a Director. He retired in 1868, and moved to Massachusetts so he probably was not  the President for long.  He eventually returned to Vermont where he was born and worked on compiling The Bibliography of Vermont.

On a research note, many of the investors just included their initials. Some of the full names were discovered during the research, but many were not, and some investors could not be located partly because full names were not used.  The initial MD (medical doctor) was particularly troublesome.    Fortunately M D was found to stand for Marcus Davis, and the President of the Company was identified.

George A Wheeler (& Co.) ($1000) was Vice-President.  He was in the 1870 Census (his wife was worth $15000)  In the 1880 Census George Wheeler  had his occupation as Board of Trade.  George and his son George Jr. were listed in 1893 with a Membership in the Board of Trade of Chicago with a commission and brokerage.  George A Wheeler was also a Director.  Possibly he became President when Marcus Davis Gilman left.  He may have been the person who originally sold shares in the company.

 S A Walker ($1000),  the Secretary, was not found in the research.

E G Hall ($1000), the Treasurer, was listed In 1867 as being a "prominent   Chicagoan" (top of page) who owned part of Hall, Kimbark, and Company.  This  Chicago Company (go back to page 321) was the most extensive heavy hardware house in the West (listed under S.D. Kimbark).  Their building  burned in the Chicago fire of 1871.  

Nothing was found on L F Coe ($3000), the Superintendent and largest investor,  or D A Coe who invested the money "Per D A Coe."


Two of the officers, Marcus Davis Gilman and George A Wheeler, were  Directors as well.  The Attorney, Bernard G Caulfied, was also a Director.

Bernard G Caulfield ($500) was a Democratic Representative to Congress for Chicago.  He served from 1875-1877 at the same time Carter H Harrison was also  a Representative to Congress. Bernard moved to Dakota Territory in 1878 so he was not the company attorney for  long.  He was listed in  The Congressional Record (as was Carter H. Harrison (next page).   He is in the Articles of Agreement as investing in the company "For Moore and Caufield." 
Attorney Bernard G Caulfield

J E Chapman ($1000) may have been the J E Chapman who did a paper on "Mine Accounting."

W Frank Richie ($250) was an Attorney.  He also invested for Judge Charles Kellum ($1000). 

E C Murray ($?) may have been a tobacco dealer in 1870 Census (  He was probably part of Murray and Mason who invested $1500 in the company, and that helps explain why he was a Director.

John Mason Loomis ($1000) was in the lumber business and a real estate owner.  He was a Civil War Veteran, and listed in the the 1880 Census  as a speculator and  contractor.

John Mason Loomis
Home of John Mason Loomis


Marvin A Lawrence ($800) was a real estate agent.

Belden F Culver ($1000) had  an impressive business and service record. He was listed with the Belden F Culver Real Estate Agency,  No 59 Dearborne Street (near front of document J4 after first indexed names).  He was identified with the development of Chicago, and advertised Lake Shore residence property. He was a  member of the Lincoln Park Commission.   He was member of the Humane Society for 1869-1902, serving as a director or officer at some point, and  an officer in the Chicago Historical Society. His Father-in-Law, Reverend Barry, started the Chicago Historical Society.  He was a member of the Academy of Sciences, and  a member of the Board of Trade.

Joseph A Griswold ($1000) was  in Kenosha County, Wisconsin in 1875.  In the 1880 Census he was  a retired merchant in Wisconsin.  He was not found in the 1870 Census.  Stephen Sherwood had land in Kenosha County  at one time.  Perhaps Stephen was personally acquainted with Joseph Griswold


Charles Kellum ($1000) was a Judge.  He lived in Sycamore, Illinois.  His investment was done "By W Frank Richie his Attorney in fact."  Stephen Sherwood resided in the Sycamore  area in 1838. 

Is W Northrup Jr. ($500) George W Northrup?  His son George W Northrup Jr. was not born until 1861.  The Reverend Northrup could have made the investment, but he is not listed as Jr.

Wm Charnley ($500) married Amy Morton.  He invested "For Judge Morton" (Marcus Morton) of Andover Massachusetts, probably her father.  Wm Charnley was a lumber merchant in Chicago.

Christian Wahl ($500),  was possibly the co-owner of a Chicago investment firm with Lewis Wahl.  Apparently he had mining interests in Idaho.   He was an Officer in the Illinois Humane Society. He was from Milwaukee, and a member of the Board of Park Commissioners. He may have also invested in a  Georgia mine.

Carter H Harrison ($500) served as a Mayor of Chicago and in the United States House of Representatives. He served at the same time as B.G. Caulfield.  He  was in the  Congressional Record (just below Caulfield) He was known as the people's Mayor.  He was assassinated.
Carter H Harrison

Dr. Emanuel Honsinger ($500) was an inventor who has an "entertaining narrative of mental progress and useful success."  He was a dentist in Chicago and made several inventions which were used in Dentist's offices of the next century.

Dr. Emanuel Honsinger
Benjamin L Honore ($250) may have owned part of a hardware store in Chicago (listed next to him is Emanuel Honsinger).

Grave of Benjamin L Honore
J.J Richards (Agt.) ($200) was  a broker

No information on Joseph Park ($500), E H Johnson ($500), or Murray and Mason ($1500).  E C Murray and John Mason Loomis who were both Directors may have been part of Murray and Mason.
Also no information was found on two of the Officers; S A Walker,  and L F Coe.  I haven't given up on looking for them.


The Officers invested between $1000 and $3000 in the company.
The Investors put between $200 and $3000 into the company.
The average amount invested was about $833.   A $1000 investment would be worth about $15700 in 2011 dollars.  The article, "Measuring Worth", gives a  a better idea of the validity of that number (enter the years first).

There were twenty four investors in the company.  Thirteen held the sixteen positions (three were also Directors).  Eleven of the investors did not hold a position.   Some information was found on all but five of the twenty four investors.  I did my best to correctly identify those I found.


Amount Received from 24 Subscribers           $20000

Received by Stephen Sherwood* Oct. 1867       4000
Appropriated for Claim Development                 6000
To be Appropriated if Prospects Favorable       10000 

*Stephen Sherwood agree to repair to the locality for one year and to develop the claim gratuitously. 
**Summarized from Articles of Agreement of the Sherwood Silver Mining Company of Nevada


Not all the investors were found in the records, but those who were read like a list of Who's Who in Chicago and nearby communities.  They were from many professions including businessmen, brokers, attorneys, politicians (even a future mayor), a judge, real estate people, investors, and a dentist who was also an inventor. They saw possibilities in  silver mining in Nevada and had the means to invest in it. They had confidence in the Stephen Sherwood Silver Mining Company as shown by the sizable investments they made. I don't know the connections that Stephen had to them, but I would assume Stephen contacted a couple of them (possibly including George A Wheeler) and they solicited others to invest. I hope the Sherwood Letters will shed a little more light on some of the investors, and the Sherwood Silver Mining Company.


In two weeks,  the blog will get back to the letters.  The next letter was written in 1864, three years before his  company was started.   Stephen Sherwood is ready to start on another adventure.  He will move from Oregon.  Where will his next letter be written?  Where do you think?  Please comment.


  1. What? None of my Chicago ancestors mentioned? No surprise here! :)

    Fantastic list of prominent Chicagoans. What a pile of research this trail has led you through, Grant. Enough to fill a book--and more!

    Looking forward to the next installment...but I have no guess as to where Mr. Sherwood will land next.

    1. You are certainly right, this find certainly did lead me to do pile of research. You never know where the trail will lead. Thanks for your comment.

      Regards, Grant

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