Friday, March 2, 2007


Casper Augustus ("C. A.") CARPENTER
September 4, 1836 – May 6, 1892

Casper Augustus Carpenter was born in Pennsylvania, as were his parents, James Jackson Carpenter (Feb. 16, 1800 - Feb. 27, 1852) and Eliza McKee (Feb 11, 1808 -Feb 27, 1886). He was one of nine children: Caroline, Albert, Edward, Mary, Harriet, Hannah, Wilson and an earlier "Caspar Augustus" who had died as an infant.

His wife Mary A. Clement was born in Ohio, as were her parents, although there is an indication that her mother may have been born in England. Before her marriage to C A Carpenter, Mary was married to a Mr. Shaw and for a time lived in Sharpsburg, PA.

C. A. Carpenter rose to the position of purchasing agent for the Pennsylvania Railroad. He was also on the founding board of the Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce, founded on July 8, 1876. Also on the board were other SFF&CH Members or family including S S Marvin, T Howe and JK Moreland. Carpenter’s name appears almost endlessly in historic works about Pittsburgh but oddly enough, always and only on lists of those who served on the Chamber of Commerce. Although he must have been proud of that fact, one wonders what else he may have done tht might be worth mentioning.

C. A. Carpenter married Mary A Clement Shaw of Sharpsburg. Their family lived in Sewickley in 1876. In 1880 the C A and Mary Carpenter Household included:

C. A. Carpenter (born Sept. 4, 1837); age 43; PA R R Agent

Mary A. Carpenter (born 1843); age 37; Keeping House

Edwin Stanton Carpenter (born February 16, 1862); age 18; at School (Chester Pa, military school there)

Bessie Lincoln Carpenter (born October 19, 1869); age 11; (Bessie was baptized Feb. 5, 1870 at First Presbyterian Church, Pittsburgh)

Helen Grant Carpenter (born 1871); age 9; (Helen was baptized on Feb. 1, 1873 at First Presbyterian Church, Pittsburgh)

Alice I. W. Carpenter (born 1873) age 7;

Anna Clement (born 1819) age 61; mother-in-law (Mary's mother)

From the Social Mirror of 1888:

“Mrs. C. A. Carpenter previous to her present marriage was Mrs. Shaw, of Sharpsburg. Miss Bessie Carpenter the eldest daughter of the house, finished school last June and makes her first bow to society this winter.”

Here it is important to mention that C. A. Carpenter was one of the initial core group of charter members of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club.

For the record, the charter members of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club were:

R F Ruff; T H Sweat; Charles J Clarke; Thomas Clark; W F Fundenberg; Howard Hartley; H C Yeager; J B White; H C Frick; E A Myers; C C Hussey; D R Ewer; C A Carpenter; W L Dunn; W L McClintock; A V Holmes.

(For a number of years B. F. Ruff served as president and John A Harper as secretary-treasurer.)

C. A. Carpenter was one of the small committee of people who were entrusted with the duty of inspecting the dam in 1880 and who thereafter reported their findings to Benjamin Ruff. This event is chronicled on the Johnstown Flood Museum website, and can be read there.

The officers of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club in 1889, at the time of the Flood, were:

Colonel E. J. Unger, President
Colonel J. J. Lawernec, Vice President
Louis Irwin, Treasurer
E. A. Myers, Secretary

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