Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens
THOMAS FOGARTY. Special adaptability to any particular calling in life is the one necessary adjunct to permanent success. No matter what be the amount of vim and determination which characterizes a man's start in business, unless he is to the manor born he will ultimately find to his sorrow that his line has been falsely cast, and the quicker he draws aside and takes up another calling the better it will be for him, and perhaps for others as well. That young man is indeed fortunate who knows what he is fitted for by nature and starts out in his career along the line which he can successfully follow to the end; but few do this as the records show. That Thomas Fogarty, organizer and proprietor of the Sanitary Plumbing and Heating Company, of Springfield, is especially fitted for the calling that now occupies his attention can not be doubted, for he has built up a large and rapidly growing business, and his scores of patrons are always well satisfied with his work.
Mr. Fogarty was born in County Clare, Ireland, January 20, 1872. He is a son of Michael and Bridget (Keating) Fogarty, and a grandson of James and Mary (Linnane) Fogarty. James Fogarty was a native of the Emerald Isle and there he devoted his life to farming and died in his native land at the age of eighty-four years. His wife died suddenly of cholera during the epidemic of 1847. They were Catholics. To them seven children were born, four sons and three daughters; three of the former and one of the latter came to America. Michael Fogarty was reared in Ireland, where he was married, and spent his life as a farmer, dying there at the age of sixty-two years. His widow is still living in Ireland, being now seventy-two years of age. James, one of their sons, emigrated to the United States a few years prior to the breaking out of the Civil war, and during the latter part of that conflict he was drafted into the Union army and served a short time. To Michael Fogarty and wife eleven children were born, four sons and seven daughters, namely: Patrick came to Springfield, Missouri, when nineteen years of age, about 1878, and was yard master here for the Frisco Railroad for a period of twenty-five years, being finally killed by accident while on duty; John S. has remained in Ireland; Mrs. L. G. Schab lives in Quincy, Illinois; Katie is teaching school in Ireland; Thomas, of this sketch; Mrs. James Bayner lives at Castle Bar, Ireland; Michael died when twenty-one years of age; Mrs. John Waters is teaching school in Ireland; Mrs. Thomas Fogarty, who married a man of her own name, but no relation, lives in Ireland; Nora is single and lives in Springfield, Missouri; Nellie S. is teaching school in Ireland.
Thomas Fogarty, of this review, grew to manhood in Erin's Green Isle and there he received a good education, attending college until he was nineteen years of age, when, in the year 1891, he emigrated to America and came direct to Springfield, Missouri, where he has resided ever since, having liked the town and country from the first. Soon after his arrival here he secured a position as fireman with the Frisco and continued to work in this capacity for a period of six years, then was promoted to engineer and worked as such for two years. Finally tiring of the road, he turned his attention to the plumbing business, associating himself with the Standard Plumbing company here, which maintained offices on the south side. He seemed to have natural ability in this line of endeavor and soon mastered its various details. In 1908 he organized the Sanitary Plumbing and Heating company, the present place of business of which is on East Commercial street. Under his able management this concern has grown to large proportions and is doing an ever-growing and lucrative business in general plumbing and heating. The firm is well equipped in every respect for prompt and high-grade service, keeping all modern apparatus and equipment and a full stock of well-selected material of all kinds, and a number of skilled artisans are constantly employed.
Mr. Fogarty was married on April 30, 1902, in Springfield to Laura O'Hara, a daughter of Jerome and Isabell (Mudd) O'Hara, a well-known family here, Mr. O'Hara being president of the Citizens Bank of Springfield for years, but is now retired. He was a native of Illinois. His family consists of seven children, namely: Frank J. is a traveling salesman and lives in San Antonio, Texas; L. J. is in partnership with our subject in the plumbing business; John is deceased; Mrs. P. J. Turley lives in Springfield; Laura, wife of the subject of this sketch; Mrs. J. J. Lawler lives in Springfield; Mrs. Mamie O'Hara lives in this city.
Jerome O'Hara, mentioned above, came to Springfield in 1895 and for many years was proprietor of the firm of O'Hara & Son, who were engaged in the dry goods business on East Commercial street, but later he went into the banking business. He has been highly successful as a business man and is a highly respected citizen.
Six children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Fogarty, namely: Harry is deceased; Francis Thomas, Clarence J., John A., Isabell and Margaret.
Politically Mr. Fogarty is a Democrat. He is a member of the Catholic church. He is a prominent member of the Knights of Columbus, having been financial secretary of the local lodge for a period of eight years. In 1913, at the state convention of this order which was held at Joplin, he was elected supreme delegate to the convention at Boston, Massachusetts. He went from there back to Ireland to visit his mother, brother and sisters. He is also a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Modern Woodmen of America, the Improved Order of Red Men and the Eagles. He is a jovial, obliging and open-hearted gentleman whom it is a pleasure to meet, and he has a host of friends in Springfield and over this part of the state.
Springfield-Greene County Library