William Henry6 Thomas (Benjamin5, Richard4, Joshua3, Richard2, Evan1) was born 1830 in Canada (Brighton, Carleton, New Brunswick), and died 1914 in Chicago, IL. He married Caroline M. Clarke 07 Jul 1858 in St. James Anglican Cathedral, Toronto, Canada, daughter of William Clarke and Anne Marshall. She was born 1839 in England (Heavitree, Exeter, Devonshire), and died 1908 in Chicago, IL.
Born in New Brunswick, he appears in the 1851 Brighton Parish Census as the child of Benjamin Thomas. He moved to Barrie, Ontario between 1851 and 1861, probably in going first to Toronto, Ontario where he met Caroline. There is a William Thomas living very near the Clarke family on Park Lane in 1856. He immigrated to Chicago about 1876, little less than a century after his loyalist ancestors had fled NY. In 1900, the family lived at 59 University Place. This was the site of the originial University of Chicago. All their Chicago homes were within a few blocks of each other.
In the Barrie 1871 census, the record for the William Thomas family includes the following:
William Thomas 36 NB W. Meth. , Caroline 29 , William 10, Bella 12, Mary 9,
Randolph 7, Hiram 5 and Caroline 2
On the 1880 United States Census his occupation is distributor and date of immigration, 1876. The children were : Isabella 19, William F. 17, Mary Ann 15, David Randolph 13, Carrie 10, Benjamin Marshall 8, John Howard 5, Wallace Henry 3, and Ruth Adeline 1. The family was living in LaGrange Park.
A son George Garfield was born in 1881--per 1900 US Census. He died in 1944. Son, William F., died in 1908, D.R. in 1918, and Wallace Henry in 1893. Hiram had died by 1880.
The following articles from the Chicago Tribune give some picture of the man and his sons. However, these stories must be placed in the context of Chicago in the 1890's. A boom town. The one thing that cannot be denied is that W.H. Thomas had a very strong constitution.
Chicago Tribune 1891
HIGH RATE OF INTEREST.
In a Circuit Court bill Willaim H. and William F. Thomas allege they lost Many thousands of dollars by doing business with the Chicago Trust and Savings Bank, The Midland Co. and Daniel H. Tolman. They tell a story of usurious interest at the rate of 2 1/2 percent per mouth until the interest became the principal.
A loan of $2650, one for $5,500 and others for $700 and $400 grew into mountains and Were soon lost among the interest and collateral securities. For instance, a trust deed involving prop. worth $2500 was given to back-up the loans, amounting to less than $5,000, and now the complainants find it hard Work to get the property back.
Chicago Tribune 1893
The Chicago Trust and Savings Bank to be a usurer yesterday by Judge Tuley. The decree was entered on a suit brought by William H. and William F. Thomas, the Midland company, Daniel H. Tolman
president of both concerns and several officers of the bank. The complaints allege that they Had borrowed $6375 on which usurious interest was Charged.
The firm of W.H. Thomas & Son won the suit which had been pending for sometime.
FELLED BY SAVAGE BLOW
Chicago Tribune, Sept. 2, 1896
W. H. Thomas HIT ON THE HEAD WITH LEAD PIPE AND BEATEN,
C. H. Davis and a Companion Sought After by the Police on a Charge That They Assaulted the Old Man in His Calumet Area Flats-He Refuses to Pay a Plumber's Bill. They Came to Collect-Victim May Not Recover.
William H. Thomas a South Side property owner with a real estate office in the Title and Trust Building, is confined at his home,
No, 59 University place, Is in critical condition as a result of a terrible blow an the head with a piece of lead pipe And a beating he received Yesterday morning at tare hands of two young plumbers. His assailants called at Mr. Thomas' flat buildings Nos 1927 and 1928 Calumet Avenue, to collect a plumbing bill, which amounted to $17.
Mr: Thomas, who is 70 years of age may not recover from his injuries.
According to the story told by neighbors living in Calumet avenue to police at the Cottage Grove Avenue Station,the aged Mr. Thomas was looking around his flat buildings to see What repairs were needed when Charles Davis, a collector in the employ of Plumber John W Trembley of 23rd St and Cottage Grove Ave, accompanied by another *young man, walked into the flat building and asked the feeble owner if he was ready to settle the little Plumbing bill.
' No:- replied Mr. Thomas,somewhat angrily, " I think the bill exorbitant, but, if you call at my office, I believe we can adjust Matters amicably."
`• That won't do," exclaimed bill collector. We want the money right now.
Well you can't get It," was the answer.
We'll get it now or we will kill You."
To avoid trouble Mr. Thomas started to walk away.}_ Before he had taken two steps, so the police report puts forth, the collector struck the aged man over the head with a long, heavy piece of lead pipe.
Mr. Thomas was knocked insensible, and, it is alleged, while he was lying on the floor In the hallway Davis and his companion kicked him several times in the head and body.
After the assault both assailants ran away so far have succeeded in eluding police.
Last night and all of yesterday afternoon Lieut. Thomas had a number of his detectives scouring the South Side for the men, but as of2:30 am. neither of them had been arrested.
Dr. A. H Bird, who was called to attend Mr. Thomas, found an ugly gash two two inches over the right eye, which extended to the bone, contusions on the head and body, and two broken ribs. The doctor also stated that the patient had received Internal Injuries, and that all his hurts, coupled with the man's advanced age and feeble condition, might prove fata
Mr. Thomas was conveyed to his home in the police ambulance from the Cottage Grove Avenue Station.
Mr. Thomas' son, D. R. Thomas, is a member of the Chicago Athletic Club, and a lawyer with an office in the Unity Building. Mr. Thomas who was assaulted has been a resident of Chicago for thirty years and is the owner of over $100,000. worth of property In the vicinity of Nineteenth street and Cottage Grove avenue.
Sept. 3 1896, Chicago Tribune
H, C. Davis, collector for Plumber J. Trembley, No. 22 Cottage Grove avenue, is still at large, despite his assault upon W.H. Thomas. a real estate man.
More than that, Mr. Davis was much sought yesterday by those whom a common bond had made wondrous kind, the callers being those who asserted that their charts to collect debts from the victim of the assault had resulted to their physical detriment,Mr. Davis was not, however, in the language of the street, "comeatable," although he was entirely willing to be located by the police. This willingness was based, it was stated, upon a desire to have Mr. Thomas or the Messrs. Thomas, the three husky sons of the first-named, place their grievances upon record, is order that a public answer might be made.
As a matter of precaution, Mr. Davis quietly went before Justice George Ford, pleaded guilty to assault and battery, and paid the fine and costs. Then he adjourned to await developments, which it seems, have not developed.
The whole story, as told, Is this:
Mr. Thomas has three sons. They are D. R. Thomas, a lawyer,, who weighs 250 pounds: Will F. Thomas, a less mighty man, but by no means a weakling; and Ben M. Thomas, who was has the reputation of being a "good man."
A great number of the small merchants in the neighborhood of Mr. Thomas' home, No. 59 University place, say they have had dealings with father and sons.
Among these is J. 0. Samkins, a plumber, at Wabash avenue and Twentieth streets He says he went to Mr. Thomas' office, which was then at No. 119 Dearborn street, and asked the payment of a bill. He says that through the Intervention of the sons he escaped only with a pair of black eyes and numerous bruises.
Another plumber,, with a similar story, is P. J. Kinney, whose shop is in Twenty-second street, near Cottage Grove avenue.
Abner Price, a mason contractor, says his son was assaulted because he attempted to collects bill.
W. Hanson, a carpenter, in Twenty-second street, near Prairie avenue, Is one of others who detail experiences with the Thomases similar to those described.
The elder Thomas could not be seen yesterday.
Benjamin and Thomas and William F. Thomas not only deny the allegations, but declare that they never before heard either of J. O, Samkins, P. J. Kinney, Abner Price, or W. H. Hanson.
However, it is asserted that one of the Thomas sons called on Mr. Samkins yesterday for the purpose of paying the claim
for presenting which Mr. Samkins says he was beaten.
Chicago Tribune October 6, 1898 FENDER RUNS DOWN LAWYER W. H. THOMAS.Aged Attorney Struck While Crossing La Salle Street-is crushed Under the Car-Badly Hurt, but Will Recover.
Attorney W. H. Thomas of 57 University place was run down by a grip car at Randolph and La Salle streets at 2 o'clock yesterday afternoon. His Injuries are serious, but It Is thought he will recover. The car fender was antiquated and useless. The lawyer, who is 67 years old, was crossing La Salle street with his sons. Attorneys D. R.and Benjamin Thomas, when the accident occurred. A wagon stopped them for a moment, and when it passed Mr. Thomas started ahead. He did not see a Lincoln avenue grip car which had just left the tunnel, and was run down.
Mr. Thomas was dragged nearly 100 feet before the car was stopped and when his sons reached him he was unconscious. Part of his body was under the front of the car, which had to be shoved back before he could be taken out. A physician who attended him said that two ribs and his right arm were broken. He was taken home in an ambulance.
Mr. Thomas has been a resident of Chicago twenty years. With his sons he has offices In the Unity Building.
Chicago Tribune (IL) - May 10, 1914
Deceased Name: William H. Thomas
William H. Thomas, aged 85 years, father of David R., Benjamin M., John H., George G., Isabella B., Mary A., Caroline M., and Ms. H. W. Gaines. Funeral Sunday, May 10, at 2 o'clock, from his late residence, 3254 Groveland ave. Interment, Oakwoods cemetery.
Caroline M. Clarke: Her birth is registered in St. Thomas Parish--1839 Oct.-Dec. William and Caroline were married in Toronto in 1858. The transcription of the original record indicated that she was 19. The witnesses were Stephen Ricketts and father, Wm. Clarke, both of Toronto. She was named after William's sister, Caroline.
She appeared in The Tribune as being active in real estate with William. She died from utuerine cancer at 3234 Groveland. Her children were listed as Wiiliam F., David R., Benjamin M., John Howard, George G., Isabella R., Mary A. and Mrs. H.W. Gaines.
Children of William Thomas and Caroline Clarke are: John Howard Thomas. Ruth Thomas. (Mrs. H.W. Gaines) Isabella Thomas. Wallace Henry Thomas. George Garfield Thomas. Mary Ann Thomas. William F. Thomas. Caroline Thomas. Benjamin Marshall Thomas and David Randolph Thomas.
Benjamin Marshall Thomas, born 1873 in Canada (Barrie, Ontario); died 24 Jun 1927 in Chicago, IL. Benjamin Marshall7 Thomas (William Henry6, Benjamin5, Richard4, Joshua3, Richard2, Evan1) was born 1873 in Canada (Barrie, Ontario), and died 24 Jun 1927 in Chicago, IL. He married Alice Ethel Lupton 1898 in prob. Chicago, daughter of John Lupton and Anna Pillar. She was born 1873 in Canada (Montreal, Quebec), and died 1909 in Chicago, IL.
. David Randolph Thomas married Queen Vernon Gridley daughter of William Seward Gridley and Eleanor Caroline Gridley. Their daughter, Goldie, was very a proud member of several Daughters of the American Revolution chapters. One can't help but wonder if she even knew that her Thomas loyalist heritage was just as strong. Born Golden Caroline Thomas she married Frank Wright. Both her mother and father were descended from original settlers of Farmington CT and were connected through the descendants of Richard Seymour.