EDWARD JOHN PERRY. As incumbent of the office of burgess of Greensburg and as one of the representative citizens of Westmoreland county. Mr. Perry is consistently accorded recognition in this compilation, while it may be stated that he is one of the leading undertakers and florists of the attractive capital city of the county.
Edward John Perry is a native of the old Keystone state where the family was founded several generations ago. He was born in Lewisville, Chester county. Pennsylvania March 18, 1864 and is a son of Samuel C. and Mary Ellen (Stern) Perry of whose eight children six are living, namely:
Lizzie, wife of Samuel McCauley, who resides in the northeastern part of Maryland: William T a successfull druggist in Chester Pennsylvania: Edward T. of whom later: Albert Cloud, engaged in the grocery business in the city of Philadelphia; George Elliott, identified with the same line of enterprise in the same city, and Anna, wife of Albert McCauley, superintendent of the Denver paper mills in the city of Denver, Colorado. Samuel C. Perry was born January 17, 1828, and the major part of his life was passed in Chester county. In his youth he learned the carpenter's trade, and his active career was devoted to contracting and building, in which he was fairly successful, being a man of integrity and reliability. He died August 31, 1883, at the age of fifty-four years. In politics he was a stalwart advocate of the principles and policies of the Democratic party, and both he and his wife were prominent and devoted members of the Methodist Episcopal church, while for many years he was a member of the board of trustees of St. John's Church, in Lewisville. In a fraternal way he was identified with the I. O. O. F. and the K. P., while in all the relations of life he commanded the confidence and esteem of those with whom he came in contact. His wife is Mary Ellen Perry, nee Stern, of Denver, Colorado.
Edward J. Perry passed his boyhood days in his native town in whose public schools he secured his early educational training, though his school work was of very irregular order after he had attained the age of ten years, since he then began to depend upon his own resources to a very large extent. He secured employment on a neighboring farm, remaining with the one employer for six years, within which time he attended school as opportunity presented, and he remained two years with another farmer of Cecil county, Maryland. At the age of eighteen years he secured a position in the establishment of a leading undertaker and florist of Westgrove, Chester county where he secured his initial experience in the line of enterprise with which he is now so successfully identified. He remained connected with this establishment for a period of four and one-half years, within which time he had thoroughly familiarized himself with all details of the business. In 1887 he associated himself with Ellsworth Burtis and engaged in the undertaking business at Mount Holly, New Jersey, where the enterprise was conducted about two years, under the firm name of Burtis & Perry. He then disposed of his interests and shortly afterward removed to the city of Pittsburg, where he was employed about eighteen months, at the expiration of which, in 1890, he came to Greensburg, where he has ever since maintained his home and where he has become numbered among our representative business men. For four and one-half years he was here employed by Samuel N. Shields. Undertaker, and June 17, 1895, he engaged in business for himself as a funeral director, while in 1901 he added to his undertaking business the florist department, while his equipments and accessories are of the best and his establishment one of the leading concerns of the sort in the county.
In politics Mr. Perry accords a stanch allegiance to the Democratic party, and has been an active worker in its cause for a number of years past. He was a member of the Democratic county committee for several terms as a representative of the Fourth ward in the city of Greensburg, and in February. 1903, was signally honored in being elected to his present responsible position as burgess for a term of three years, his election, furthermore, indicating the high regard in which he is held in the community. In a fraternal way Mr. Perry is affiliated with the following orders: Greensburg Lodge, No. 511, B. P. O. E.: Greensburg Castle, No. 366, K. G. E.: Greensburg Tent. No. 214, K. M.: Westmoreland Lodge, No. 840. I. O. O. F.; Aerie No. 577. F. O. E.: Westmoreland Camp, No. 18. W. of W.: the Grand Fraternity and the Homeless. No. 26. He is secretary of the Westmoreland County Funeral Directors' Association, and a member of the board of trustees of Thiel College. He has also been identified with the Greensburg fire department for fourteen years, in which time he has filled all of the various offices in the company, as well as being captain for six years; is a member of the Pennsylvania State Firemen's Association, and also served one term as president of the Western Pennsylvania Fireman's Association, which comprises thirty-six counties, as well as being on the executive board since 1898. Mr. Perry married, January 6, 1897, Margaret J. Horty, daughter of James Horty, of West Grove, Chester county, Pennsylvania, where she was born and reared, and seven children were born, one of whom died in infancy. The names of the surviving children are: Fred B., Paul R., Edward J., Jr., Richard M., Kenneth C., and Elizabeth C. He and his wife are prominent members of the First Lutheran church, he having filled the office of deacon for the past six years.
Source: Page(s) 82-84, History of Westmoreland County, Volume II, Pennsylvania by John N Boucher. New York, The Lewis Publishing Company, 1906.
Transcribed February 2006 by Nathan Zipfel for the Westmoreland County History Project
Contributed for use by the Westmoreland County Genealogy Project (http://www.pa-roots.com/westmoreland/)
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