FREDERICK A. WEST, who has been prominently identified with manufacturing interests of Hartford for a number of years, was born in that city Sept. 11, 1856, and belongs to an old and honored pioneer family.
Mr. West's ancestors settled at in early date at Stafford Springs, Connecticut, and Alva West, his great grandfather, who was born in Stafford, Connecticut, about 1760, served in the Continental army from May 9, 1775, to December 18, of that year, as a member of the 3rd Connecticut or 2nd Continental regiment. On June 20, 1777, he re-enlisted, in Samuel Webb's Regiment, in which he was made a corporal in July, 1777, and served uintil discharged, on June 20, 1780. His death occurred of his home in Stafford, when he was ninety-one years of age.
Horatio West, our subject's grandfather, was born in Stafford Springs, March 4, 1785, and passed his life there. He owned and operated a large farm, but personally maintained a life of the ease and even liesure for that day, his fondness for fine horses having been especially noticeable. His wealth and leisure were not selfishly used, however, as he took an active part in town affairs, serving on the school committee and other offices. On August 13, 1811, he was married by Rev. Samuel Bloss to Miss Phebe Cushman, and they had a large family of children, the names and dates of birth being as follows: Fidelia, Nov. 11, 1812; Ninetta, May 17, 1813; Henryetta, March 22, 1815; Horatio Gates, July 6, 1817; Phoebe, Oct. 1, 1818; Alonzo, Oct. 9, 1820; Philo, January 1, 1822; Susan, July 28, 1825; Mahlon R., Aug. 27, 1826; Gidding H., Aug. 28, 1829. Mahlon R. was a lawyer in Stafford and later in Hartford, where he took first rank in the profession. He served as a representative in the State Legislature, and on the board of alderman in Hartford.
Philo West, the father of our subject, was born and reared at Stafford Springs, and in 1842, at age 19, he went to Hartford to engage in the trucking business. Later he became a partner in the firm of Main & West, who were for many years the leading trucking men of the city, keeping about thirty-five teams employed. After the death of his partner, Elijah J. Main, he continued the business alone until his death, which occurred Aug. 8, 1851. His influence was recognized in local affairs as well as in business circles, and politically he affiliated with the Democratic party. He was a leading member of the First Baptist Church of Hartford, contributing liberally of his time and means to its work. His wife, Abbie A.Main, was a daughter of Bradley Main, of Willington, Connecticut, and later of South Windsor, where he owned a large farm. Her mother, whose maiden name was Betsy Talmadge, was a daughter of Joseph Talmadge, a lieutenant in the Revolutionary army from New York State. Philo West and his wife had four children: (I) Addie E., married John D. French, and died in 1878, leaving two sons, J. Arthur and Howard W.. (2) Estella L. married William S. Woodward, president of the Woodward & Rogers Co., of Hartford. (3) Frederick A. is mentioned more fully below. (4) Rev. William Ward West, a minister in charge of a Baptist church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is a graduate of Rochester University, at Rochester, New York, and a bright and able man. He is president of the Baptist Young People's Union, of the State of Pennsylvania.
Our subject's early education was secured in the Second North School and the Brown School of Hartford, and in Hannum's Business College, in the same city, while his habit of reading has kept him well abreast of the times. On leaving school, at the age of about 20, he began to learn the machinist's trade in the National Screw Co.'s factory, of which his uncle, Elijah S. Pierce, was superintendent and general manager. He remained there four years, and in 1878 entered the employee of the Pratt & Whitney Co., in the lathe department of the machine shop. After four years he took the contract for that department, of which he had charge until his resignation, about forty-five men being under his direction. After 22 years of service with the Pratt & Whitney Co., Mr. West resigned his position as foreman of the lathe department, and accepted a position as special agent of the American Real Estate Company, of New York, with an office in the Sage & Alan building, Hartford. Mr. West is not only successful in his chosen line of work, but he takes keen interest in public affairs. He served two years as Councilman from the fourth Ward, and in 1898 was elected alderman, the honor being conferred each time by acclamation and without opposition. At present he is chairman of the joint standing committee on Water Works. He is a member of Charter Oak Lodge, No. 2, I.O.O.F. in which he is past grand master; and he is a past officer in the Ancient Order of United Workman; and past Regent of the Royal Arcanum. He has also been interested in military affairs, and has served as a corporal in the Governor's Foot Guard, and as lieutenant in the Veteran Corps. Mr. West is active in religious work as a member of the First Baptist Church, is one of the society's committeemen, and for twenty-two years has served as librarian.
Mr. West married Nellie M. Roberts, daughter of Albert W. Roberts, a well-known citizen of Hartford, four children have brightened their home: Mabel Roberts, Clarence Burton, Robert Ward, and Helen Abbie (deceased).