Pictorial and Genealogical Record
of Greene County, Missouri

Together with Bibliographies of Prominent Men of Other Portions of the State, Both Living and Dead


W. T. CHANDLER. It matters little what vocation a man may select as occupation so long as it is an honorable one. If he is an honest, upright man, courteous in his intercourse with his fellow-men, and possessed of energy and business sagacity, he is bound to make his business a financial success. Mr. Chandler possesses all the above-mentioned requirements and is to-day a prosperous general merchant of Ash Grove. He was born in Fitchburg, Mass., September 19, 1849, a son of J. L. and Abbie (Kimball) Chandler, the paternal ancestors having come from England to this country during its early history, and in 1637 became residents of Connecticut and still later of Massachusetts, where they were known for many years. Members of this family were soldiers in the Revolution, and John Chandler, the great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch, was a captain in the Continental army. The Chandlers have been prominent in the affairs of their adopted country from the very first, and the majority of them were men of influence and affluence. The great-great-grandfather held the rank of cornet in one of the French and Indian wars, in the English service, and the grandfather, Samuel Chandler, was a soldier in the War of 1812, in which he served as captain, and later was major-general of Massachusetts State Militia and captain of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Boston. J. L. Chandler was born in Massachusetts in 1820, and in that State continued to reside until he reached manhood. In 1853 he emigrated to St. Louis, Mo., where he followed mercantile pursuits until the opening of the late lamentable civil war, when he enlisted in the Seventh Missouri Cavalry, was elected adjutant, and was later promoted to lieutenant-colonel, a position which he ably filled until 1865, at the termination of the war. Some of the most important of the battles in which he participated were Prairie Grove and Little Rock. He was wounded during his service, but not seriously. After the war he took up his residence in Memphis, Tenn., where he engaged in business as a wholesale grocer and cotton factor, later becoming a traveling salesman, the greater part of his business being transacted in Texas and a few other Southern States. He was an intelligent and wide-awake man of affairs, and his death, which occurred in February, 1880, was much regretted. His wife died in May of the same year. To them three children were born, of whom the immediate subject of this sketch was the oldest. Ella is the wife of W. J. Hawkins, of Greene County. Bessie married a Mr. Janes, and died in 1884 in Ash Grove. Mr. Chandler was a Republican in his political views. Socially, he belonged to the A. F. & A. M. and the I. O. O. F., and at one time was collector of revenue of Memphis, Tenn. The early life of W. T. Chandler was spent in Missouri, and his education was received in the excellent public schools of St. Louis and in the _______ University of that city. He started on his business career in 1873, in Ash Grove, and since that time he has carried on a successful general mercantile business, and has gained the esteem and respect of the community at large and of the citizens of Ash Grove in particular. He does an annual business of $20,000, the value of his stock amounting to about $15,000. In addition to himself, he finds constant employment for three or four clerks, who have a thorough knowledge of their business and are well posted, accommodating and agreeable. The establishment has a frontage of 25 feet and a depth of 94 feet. Mr. Chandler is a Republican in politics, and has always taken a deep and abiding interest in the political issues of the day, and especially those of his section, and has held a number of important offices in the town. He is a member of the A. O. U. W., but aside from this does not belong to any secret organization. He is the owner of considerable real estate, principally city property, and has a pleasant and comfortable residence in the eastern part of Ash Grove. Mr. Chandler was married in June, 1882, to Miss Roxie Comegys, daughter of William Comegys, the postmaster at Ash Grove. She was born in Indiana and has borne her husband four children: Triece K., Almira, Courtney and John L. The children are bright and intelligent, and the eldest is now attending school.

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