Category Archives: Maternal

Summer 1934: Seeing America First

Tuesday morning, at 6 a.m., Wilbur F. Lewis, Jr., Alton Jones, Bradford Lewis and Samuel A. Lewis, who are recently graduates from the Somerville High School, left Electric avenue, West Somerville, on a motor canoeing trip to the Pacific Coast and return; planning their first camp at Niagara, New York.

Their itinerary includes stops at the Great Lakes; a visit to the automobile factories in and about Detroit; a week’s stay at the Worlds Fair in Chicago; then a stop in Dakota, where a visit will be made to the Indian Reservation, to the home of an Indian boy, and schoolmate of Wilbur Lewis at Tilton Academy; then a stop at Yellowstone National Park; through the Rockies to the State of Washington, to look over the redwood forests in that part of the country; thence down the coast to San Francisco to Los Angeles, where they have letters of introduction to the Paramount Studios.

The exact route of their return trip had not been decided when the boys left home; but will, in any event, include a visit to Washington, D.C. The boys are equipped with tent, sleeping bags, and cooking utensils; and will live the next two months in the wide-open spaces of America.

June 1944: Wilbur Lewis, Jr. Is Wounded in Action on Anzio Beachhead

Word has been received by Mrs. Wilbur F. Lewis jr. that her husband has been wounded in the Anzio beachhead campaign, sometime between May 19 and 29.

Pfc. Lewis was a member of a special Commando Platoon of the Infantry. He was inducted into the service in August, 1943, completed his basic training at Fort McLellan, Alabama, and specialized training at Camp Mead, Baltimore, Maryland, and embarked for foreign service in the early part of February of this year. He is now confined to a military hospital somewhere in Italy. From information that can be obtained he is making rapid recovery.

Pfc. Lewis is a graduate of Boston university and is the junior member of the firm, S. H. Lewis and Son, real estate and insurance, located in Davis square, Somerville.

Pfc. Lewis has never seen his daughter, Wendy Gilbert Lewis, who was born on April 20 of this year. Mrs. Lewis and daughter are living with Pfc. Lewis’ parents at 51 Foskett street, Somerville.

MARCH 1957: Bank Adopts Resolve on Late Wilbur F. Lewis

Messages of sympathy continue to pour in on the family of the late Wilbur Fletcher Lewis, bank president, builder, and for many years prominent in civic and fraternal affairs of Somerville, who passed away on Mar. 6.

A native and life-long resident of Somerville, he had served in the board of aldermen, the house of representatives and on the board of public welfare of his native city. He was in the building business for many years and had built apartment houses and many dwelling houses in Somerville, Arlington, and other sections of Greater Boston.

The Winter Hill Federal Savings and Loan Association, of which he had been president for the past four years and a director, since 1919, adopted in Memoriam, the following resolutions which have been sent to the family.

“Our Heavenly Father, in His Divine Providence, has removed from our midst, Wilbur F. Lewis, president of the Winter Hill Federal Savings and Loan Association for the past four years and a director since 1919.

“He was a man of exceptional ability and determination, a man with good sound judgement, ready and willing at all times to do his utmost for the benefit of this institution.

“He constributed much to the success of our association and his passing is a great loss to the directors, employees and all others who knew him.

“The deep sympathy of the directors is extended to the family of our departed friend.

“Therefore, Be it Resolved, that this Memorial, be spread to his family.”

He was born in Somerville, 68 years ago, the son of the late Stephen H. and Laura B. (Wright) Lewis. He was a graduate of the Somerville High school and Berkley Preparatory School. He served in the Somerville board of alderman in 1916, 1917, 1918, and 1919, in the house of representatives in 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923 and 1924.

After leaving school he entered the building business with his father, as S. H. Lewis & Son, and when his father began to fail in health, Wilbur, took over, for 30 years conducted the business. He built the Powder House Apartments at 119 College ave., the home in which he resided at 51 Foskett Street, and many other dwelling houses in West Somerville and Arlington. He built over 100 houses.

He was noted for his kindness and loyalty to his family and relatives. He was well known in the Davis sq. section, where he was numbered among the “old-timers” and had a wide circle of friends.

The late Mr. Lewis had been a member of the Somerville Lodge of Elks for over 35 years; a lieutenant in the Ancient & Honorable Artillery Co.; Somerville Lodge of Masons, Massachusetts Consistory; Aleppo Temple Mystic Shrine; charter member of the Kiwanis Club of Somerville; Fraternal Order of the Eastern Star; Somerville Chamber of Commerce, College Avenue Methodist church, and a corporiate member of the Fernald School at Waltham.

He leaves his wife, Mrs. Etta E. (Dixon) Lewis, whom he married in 1913; a son, Wilbur Franklin Lewis, and three grandchildren.

Largely attended services were held in the College Avenue Church. Rev. Dr. Guy H. Wayne officiated. Burial was in Mt. Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge.

Lt. Wilbur F. Lewis, Silver Star Winner, Home from Service

Lt. Wilbur F. Lewis, Silver Star Winner, Home from Service
Somerville Press

Recently arrived home from two years of distinguished service overseas, combat infantryman Lt. Wilbur F. Lewis, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. Wilbur F. Lewis, 51 Foskett Street, West Somerville, is now reunited with his wife, Marion, and his two-year-old daughter, Wendy whom he had never seen.

A volunteer member of a raider platoon, Lt. Lewis fought his way form Anzio Beachhead in Italy to Salzburg, Austria, with the Fame Third Division of the Seventh Army. Fighting under the French First Army in the Colmar pocket in France, Lt. Lewis was awarded the French Fourragères. Later, he received the Silver Star Medal for gallantry in Action in Besancon, France. Other recognitions awarded Lt. Lewis were the Unit Citation with two clusters, the Purple Heart, for wounds received in the drive to Rome, the Infantry Combat Medal, and four battle stars. Lt. Lewis participated in the initial landing in Southern France on August 15, 1944, for which he was awarded the Bronze Arrowhead.

Going into battle as a private immediately on his arrival overseas, Lt. Lewis soon raised himself to the rank of sergeant, and the later received his commission on the field. At the end of the war, Lt. Lewis took an active part in the occupational program of the Third Division as staff officer in the 30th Infantry Regimental School in Eschwege, Germany, after two weeks training in Paris, France.

Following his discharge on February 27, Lt. Lewis will take up his duties as a member of the firm of S. H. Lewis & Son, Builders, Wilbur F. Lewis, Real Estate and Insurance, and the Franklin Realty Trust, located in the Woodbridge Hotel, 23 College avenue, West Somerville.

William H. Hammersley, Sr. – Profile (with death)

From History of Walworth County Wisconsin by Albert Clayton Beckwith, Vol. II,
Publ. 1912 – Page 848-850

william-h-hammersley-srIn the death of William H. HAMMERSLEY, Sr., Lake Geneva and vicinity lost one of its most valued citizens. The latter part of his life, covering over forty years, was spent here and during that time he took an active part in the general progress of the county. He belonged to that type of progressive business men who believe in carrying the Golden Rule into their everyday affairs. Always quiet and unostentatious in manner, he nevertheless left a strong impress of his individuality upon all whom he met. He had the happy faculty of seeing the beautiful things of the world, enjoyed nature, loved flowers, appreciated noble traits in mankind and had an optimistic outlook on life, so that to know him was to respect and admire him for his exemplary characteristics.

Mr. HAMMERSLEY was born January 8, 1832, in Hanley, England, and was the son of William S. and Ann (PEDLEY) HAMMERSLEY. His paternal grandfather, Ralph HAMEMRSLEY, died in England when about seventy-five years old. He was a man of strict integrity, a consistent Christian and for many years was a deacon in the Congregational church.

William S. HAMMERSLEY, father of the subject, was a manufacturer of chinaware in England, which business he followed until 1843, in which year he emigrated to America, locating in New York city, where he became an importer of china and earthenware. In 1855 he moved to Flint, Michigan, and retired from business, and now he and his wife are both deceased; they were members of the Presbyterian church. They were the parents of the following children: Ann Jane, widow of Henry C. WALKER, lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan; William H., of this review; Lucilla Oakley is the wife of Edward M. MASON, of Girard, Kansas;
Fannie is the wife of W. B. BUCKINGHAM and lives at Stevens Point, Wisconsin.

William H. HAMMERSLEY, Sr., was twelve years old when his family brought him to the United States. He had attended school in his native land, and soon after coming to New York he began clerking in his father’s store. When he reached manhood he became associated with his father in business and so continued until 1853. On October 6th of that year he was united in marriage with Elizabeth S. SMITH, daughter of Henry and Phoebe Ann (BARKER) SMITH. She was born in Erie county, New York, near Buffalo, and in her early life the family move to New York City, where she lived until her marriage. Her parents had come from Saybrook, Connecticut, to New York state and settled at Butterworth Falls (correction: Buttermilk Falls, now Highland Falls), near West Point, subsequently moving to Erie county, where Mrs. HAMMERSLEY was born.

In 1863 Mr. HAMMERSLEY and family came to Walworth county and lived a year on the farm. He then went to Lake Geneva and went into business as a dealer in drugs, books and stationery. He had a well stocked store and enjoyed a large trade. In later years he also engaged in the floral business, having charge of the Lake Geneva Floral Company. He was very successful as a business man and was known to all with whom he had dealings as a man of the highest integrity.

Politically Mr. HAMMERSLEY was a Republican and he took more than a passing interest in public affairs, and held a number of township offices, such as township clerk, and he was chairman of the board of supervisors.

Three children were born to Mr. and Mrs. HAMMERSLEY: Grace C. is the wife of C. D. GILBERT, a grocer of Lake Geneva, and they have one daughter, Lizzie; Charles H., who was a florist in Lake Geneva, married Ida C. GILBERT, which union was without issue, and his death occurred in 1894; William H. married Emma M. SEYMOUR and they have three children, Seymour, Henry and Evelyn; he is in the drug business in Lake Geneva, having succeeded his father.

William H. HAMMERSLEY, Sr. was a Royal Arch Mason, a prominent member and officer of the Congregational church, and an earnest Christian. He was one of the prominent and influential men of the southern part of the county, being a man of steadfast purpose in all the relations of life, whether religious or secular, conscientious and faithful to every trust. He was summoned to his reward on April 14, 1906.

Golden Wedding at Fairfax

Golden Wedding at Fairfax

Mr. and Mrs. Samuel D. Alfred celebrated their golden wedding at their home in Fairfax on Saturday night last. Quite a large number of guests participated in the celebration–mostly old inhabitants of the locality; the guests numbered about forty–and their average ages would be about seventy years old. An excellent supper was served and a thoroughly enjoyable evening spent, six of the seven children of the couple whose semi-centennial was being celebrated were present and took part in it, one only was absent, a married daughter residing in Iowa, whose health was not such as to permit her to be present. Mr. S. D. Alfred was for a long time one of the leading merchants of Fairfax, but has been out of business since 1865. Several valuable souvenirs of the occasion were presented to Mr. and Mrs. Alfred.

The Burlington Free Press
(Burlington, Vermont)
29 Nov 1882, Wed • Main Edition • Page 3


A. S. Alfred, Paper Man, Succumbs

Widely Known Coast Manufacturer Dies Here After Brief Illness

Almon S. Alfred, 85 years of age, of 1500 West Ninth Street, one of the most widely known paper manufacturers and salesmen on the Pacific Coast, died yesterday at his home after a brief illness. He had been a resident of Los Angeles for the past fifteen years, and was prominent in business and civic activities. Mr. Alfred was born in Vermont, where he entered the paper manufacturing business at an early age. For several years he was the personal representative in the United States and foreign countries of one of the largest paper manufacturing concerns in the industry. He leaves two daughters, Alice Alfred of Los Angeles, and Helen L. Alfred of Orange. N. J., and two sons. Clarence and Elbridge Alfred of Orange, N. J. Funeral arrangements have not been completed. The body will be sent to Lake Geneva, Wis., for burial.

The Los Angeles Times
Thursday, April 28, 1932
Page: Page 18

Almon Alfred: “There is a particular charm to the Southwest which grows each time I come here.”

Almon S. Alfred, accompanied by his daughter, is registered at the Hayward from New York City. He is one of the oldest traveling salesmen coming to the Pacific Coast, and has been in Los Angeles annually at this season for twenty years, and with each coming his enjoyment increases. This time he has brought his daughter, and may remain indefinitely. “There is a particular charm to the Southwest which grows each time I come here,” said Mr. Alfred. “It has grown to such proportion that I shall soon retire and come here to make it a permanent home. To me there has been nothing so wonderful in the entire United States as the growth of this city. On each succeeding visit I have been forced to marvel at the building developments. Years ago we looked upon Los Angeles as more or less of a joke, but I am afraid that the joke is all on the doubters.”

The Los Angeles Times
(Los Angeles, California)
23 Jan 1910, Sun • Page 111


The Arrival and Naturalization of Stephen H. Lewis

It looks like has added new naturalization petitions for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and it just so happened that I did a new search on Stephen H. Lewis and it revealed three new records with some additional information on his arrival from Nova Scotia.

We already knew his birthdate, though this is yet another citation for it: 13 December 1857. Also added additional citations for birth town (Five Islands), birth county (Colchester), and birth province (Nova Scotia), as well as his occupation in Somerville, Building and Carpenter.

He arrived in the port of Boston on 10 April 1883, and on 9 October 1893, he made his Declaration and Intention to become a citizen of the United States, renouncing “forever all allegiance and fidelity” to Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom and Ireland.

On 30 December 1901, Stephen H. Lewis “having produced the evidence required by law, took the aforesaid oath and was admitted to become a citizen of the United States of America.” He was living at his longtime residence, 44 Kidder Avenue in West Somerville, Massachusetts. An interesting note is that Edward VII was now the King, following the death of his mother, Queen Victoria.

Joseph B. Went (51 Hall Ave, Somerville) and George A. Richardson (20 Wesley, Somerville) were the witnesses.




741 Main Street – Hammersley Block

The Hammersley Block is a two-story commercial vernacular building that shares party walls with both of its neighbors. It has a red brick front and is decorated with a pressed metal cornice that features dentils and a sawtooth motif. Above the second story openings are heavy label moldings that suggest the late Italianate style. Openings are filled with single-light sashes. The original storefront of this building was typical of the era: large show windows with transoms, iron columns, and a central entrance. In 1929, though, the building was given a “modern” copper and glass front that has been identified as being from the Brasco Manufacturing Company of Chicago.

The new storefront appears hi a catalog from the Brasco company published in 1927. It features a much deeper central entrance so that the display windows are considerably longer. The storefront has a thin copper framework and low copper aprons under the show windows so that the primary construction material is glass. Above the show windows at the front of the building there is a multi-light transom and between the long show windows there is an arched ceiling. The two entry doors flank a narrow showcase and the entire entrance is topped with a large fanlight. This beautiful storefront is in excellent condition.

The Hammersley Drug Store was one of the most prominent businesses in downtown Lake Geneva. The business began with W. H. Hammersley in 1865, who operated the drug store until 1905, only one year before his death. He was located in the old building on this site, which he replaced in 1885-86. Upon his death, his son, also William H., succeeded him in the drug store. In 1920, his sons, Seymour and Henry, entered the business and operated it until a fourth generation took over, operating the store until the 1980s.

“Forty Years in Business,” Lake Geneva News, 28 September 1905, p. 1; “W. H. Hammersley,” Lake Geneva Herald, 13 April 1906, p. 1; “W. H. Hammersley Associates His Sons With Him,” Lake Geneva News, 8 April 1920, p.l.

The second important and long-time drug store in Lake Geneva was the Hammersley Drug Store. W. H. Hammersley was a native of England who came to the United States hi 1844. He was in business in New York with his father, who imported china and crockery. He remained in this business until 1863, when he came to Lake Geneva. In 1865, he began his drug store business, also selling books and stationery in a small frame building. In 1885-86, Hammersley had a new brick block constructed for his store (741 Main St.) and the business remained in this location for almost 100 years. In 1906, Hammersley’s son, W. H. Jr. took over the business, then passed it on to his sons, Seymour and Henry, who had graduated from the School of Pharmacy at the University of Wisconsin. During the mid and late twentieth century, a fourth generation of Hammersleys carried on the drug store, affiliating with the Walgreen chain. The Hammersley Drug Store stayed in operation into the 1970s.

The Hammersley Block is one of the best-preserved buildings in the historic district. It still retains its 1929 copper storefront and most of its historic second story details. The Hammersley Drug Store was one of the longest and most popular of Lake Geneva’s retail businesses, and W. H. Hammersley Sr. was a prominent member of the community. Because of its long-time association with the Hammersley Drug Store, the Hammersley Block is historically significant for commerce.