Death of Sir William Van Horne, 1915
Sir William Van Horne
A bulletin issued at the Royal Victoria Hospital at ten o’clock this morning stated that Sir William Van Horne, who was operated on in that institution early this morning, had “recovered from the aesthetic, is resting and free from pain.” Sir William, who is former president of the Canadian Pacific Railway, had been indifferent health for the pat few days and was removed early this morning from his residence on Sherbrooke street west, to the Royal Victoria Hospital. It was decided that an immediate operation was necessary, and this was performed by Dr. George E. Armstrong and Dr. W. F. Hamilton. The operation revealed the fact that the patient was suffering from an abdominal abscess.
Early reports from the hospital this morning indicated that Sir William had stood the operation well. Montreal Herald, Aug 23.
According to information received in St. Andrews upon Tuesday evening, Sir William is progressing favorably. (He left for Montreal from St. Andrews the previous month)
10 Commandments for summer vacationers.
Special meeting of Council to discuss water supply.
The Inn, which has been open during the summer months, closed for the season last week.
Hon C. J. Bonaparte, of Baltimore, Md., who has been a guest at the Algonquin for several weeks, left by train on Monday night for Dixville Notch, NH, where he will remain some time at “the Balsams.”
F. W. and S. Mason of St. Andrews and their three mattresses: “Algonquin--upholstered spring mattress, “The Mattress that makes St. Andrews Famous.”
the summer not a prosperous one, owing to bad weather.
**The proprietor of the Inn held what might be termed the closing ball (end of Inn?) in The Inn hall on Wednesday evening.
The Algonquin Hotel—The Algonquin Hotel closed its doors t guest on Tuesday, after the most successful season in its history. Large as the hotel is, it has not been able to accommodate all the people who have mad application for rooms so it is not at all unlikely that an enlargement will have to be made in the near future.
Sir William Van Horne
In the death of Sir William Van Horne, the Dominion has lost one of its most distinguished citizens, and the Town of St. Andrews its greatest benefactor and friend. The vote of condolence passed at the special meeting of the Town Council on Monday is no mere form of words but is the sincere expression of the regret of the whole community for the loss of a man who was ever held in the highest esteem, and of their heartfelt sympathy with Lady Van Horne, and the other members of the family in their great bereavement. The flags on public and private buildings in the town were flown at half mast for three days.
Sir William Van Horne
Montreal, Sept 12
Sir William Van Horne, formerly president of the CPR, and one of the best known financiers in America, died in the Royal Victoria Hospital Montreal, yesterday afternoon. He was operated upon for abdominal abscess on August 23, and was supposed to be on the way to recovery until three days before his death, when an unfavorable change in his condition suddenly took place, and the end came at 2:30. He is survived by his widow, a son, P. B. Van Horne, and a daughter, Miss A. Van Horne.
Sir William Van Horne’s career is well known. He came from old Dutch stock and was born in Will County, Illinois, Feb 3, 1841. At the age of thirteen he entered the service of the Illinois Central Railway as a telegrapher at Chicago. Subsequently he served the Michigan Central in various capacities.
From 1866 to 1872, he was connected with the Chicago and Alton Railway as train dispatcher, superintendent of the St. Louis, Kansas and Northern Railway. In 1874 he became general manager of the Southern Minnesota Line, being president of the company from December 1877 to December 1879. From October 1878 until December 1879, he was also superintendent of the Chicago and Alton Railway.
In 1880 Mr. Van Horne, as he was then, became general superintendent of the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway, and remained in this position for two years. it was in 1882 that Mr. Van Horne, joined the CPR as manger, and it was in 1885, under his direction, that the last spike was driven in that road at Eagle Pass by Lord Strathcona, then Sir Donald Smith.
In 1884 the manger was made vice-president, and on August 7, 1888, he was appointed president of the CPR. he held this position until 1899, when he became chairman of the board of directors. he retired from this position in 1910. He was created an honorary K. C. M. G. by Queen Victoria in May , 1894.
His business interests covered a wide range and were extended beyond Canada. he was largely interested in the railway development of Cuba. His Canadian interests, aside from the CPR, were chiefly concerned with the pulp and paper industry, but he was keenly interested in the effort tot established a big sardine industry in the maritime provinces.
Sir William Van Horne was a man of many parts. he cold easily have won distinction as an architect, an engineer, a writer or as an artist. he was remarkably well informed on subjects usually considered remote from the railroad world. he devoted a great deal of his leisure to historical research and perused many valuable records in this respect.
He was above everything else an admirer of the artistic and the beautiful. He has left a remarkable collection of painting, including a large number of vary valuable masterpieces.
Council endeavouring to get more favourable terms on water supply from CPR.
St. Croix Courier
NB to have an expert Road Engineer
Gleaner—NB is to have a road engineer, an expert with scientific knowledge who will take charge of and direct all work of importance on the highways of the province. It is known that the Provincial Government has come that decision and a temporary appointment to the position was announced following the meeting of the Executive Council this morning. The appointment of an official to take charge of the work on the roads has been under consideration by the Government for some time and the policy met with the approval of the Union of New Brunswick Municipalities, which at its last convention passed a resolution commending such a proposition and urging that an appointment be made at once. John L. Feeney of this city is the selection of the Government of the new position, his name having been mentioned in the same connection when the creation of such a position was first discussed some time ago. He had valued experience as s city engineer in Western Canada several years ago, until he contracted fever and was forced to return home. he is now in the service of the
dominion Public Works department, but lately while on his vacation has been taking charge of some permanent work on highways at Saint John. He graduated from the engineering school at the University of NB is 1910.
Funeral of Sir William Van Horne. Details.
Surrounded by the beloved members of his family, as well as by hundred of representative business men with whom he had sat on railway boards, banks and great industrial corporations, the body of Sir William Van Horne, one of the great leaders of this Dominion, embarked on its last railway journey this morning, when, following a brief funeral service at his residence, at 513 Sherbrooke Street, west, Sir William’s coffin was taken to the Windsor station, and placed on a special train, which left for Joliette, Illinois, where the great railway builder will be buried tomorrow in the family vault.
It was the desire of Sir William Van Horne, that he should be buried near the place of his birth, and it was according to that wish that a special train steamed out of the Windsor station at half-last eleven o’clock, bearing all that remained of the men who has played so important a part in the building of that and many other railroads.
The funeral service at the residence was clothed in the genuine simplicity that has always characterized the actions of Sir William. The body lay in a large room fronting on Stanley street, and around it were placed the scores of floral tributes that came from all parts of Canada and from many parts of the United States. From half-past nine o’clock on, the mourners filed past the bier. the representatives of royalty, of governments, railway corporations, banks and enterprises representing the various activities of Canadian life,, all crossed the threshold of the chamber, paying by their very presence a reverential tribute to the man with whom the majority have been associated for many years.
Outside the house, the crowds who could not gain admittance stood bareheaded. Traffic along Sherbrooke street was suspended. All along the route to the railway station, people stood three and four deep on the sidewalk, and as the coffin passed by, all bowed their heads in solemnity. Behind the hearse walked Sir William’s son, his brother and his favorite grandson, a little fellow of about nine years. then came a long row of citizens. When the first carriages had proceeded down Stanley street and had reached the corner of St. Catherine street, all the mourners had not left the residence, such was the manifestation of public appreciation of what the loss of Sir William Van Horne meant to Canada.
The floral tributes filled three carriages. the most prominent was a Cuban palm tree, made from red roses. It stood six feet high, and at the base were the words “Cuban Railway.” Place in almost an obscure position was a pathetic looking pillow of white roses. Few who passed it by with a passing glance knew that is was from the old widow Lady Van Horne. It represented all the love of a life long comradeship.
. . . .
A tremendous crowd had gathered at Windsor Station to catch a glimpse of the funeral procession. Among the thousands who stood hat in hand were many old employees of the CPR, who were associated with Sir William in the early days of that great railway. In the depot itself, many of these employees stood, and as the bier was heeled through the gates to the waiting train, many reflections of early days were brought to memory.
the special train consisted of three coaches, one of the them was Sir William’s own private car “Saskatchewan,” on which he has travelled in many parts of the continent. the engine, 2213, was draped in black. . . .
The CPR was represented at the funeral of its former President by the following directors:--Mr. Richard B. Angus, Sir Herbert S. Holt, Mr. Charles R. Hosmer, Senator Robert Mackay, Mr. Wilmot D. Matthews, Toronto; Mr. Augustus M. Nanton, Winnipeg; Sir Edmund B. Osler, M. P. Toronto; Mr. J. K. L. Ross.
The CPR officials attending were: Sir Thomas Shaughnessy, President; George Bury, vice-president; L. G. Ogden, vice-president; G. M. Bosworth, vice-president; E. W. Beatty, vice-president and general counsel; Grant Hall, vice-president, and general manager Western Lines, Winnipeg; J. S. Dennis, assistant to the president; James Manson, assistant to vice-president, W. R. Baker, secretary and assistant to president; E. Alexander, assistant secretary, H. C. Oswald, assistant secretary; H. E. Suckling, treasurer; F. J. Miller, assistant treasurer; J. Doig, paymaster . . . .
Special to the Montreal Herald
Chicago, Il. Sept 16. Two thousand pioneer residents of Joliet and Will county yesterday greeted the arrival of the body of Sir William Van Horne, who fifty-seven years ago as a telegraph messenger boys in Joliet, began his spectacular career as a railroad builder.
In the funeral car, which was the last of three coaches on a special train, the body arrived in Joliet at 10:45 o’clock. In the funeral party from Montreal, Sir William’s Canadian home, were his son, Richard. B. Van Horne,, and the latter’s wife, his brother, Augustus C. Van Horne, of Joliet, who was present at Sir William’s death in Canada, and E. W. Lynch, former secretary of the railroad magnate.
The funeral procession proceeded from the Joliet Union station to Oakwood cemetery, where the body was buried in the Van Horne family lot, near the graves of Sir William’s father and mother, in compliance with a dying request of the millionaire railroader. three large truck loads of floral offerings from railroad officials throughout the United States and Canada, followed the long line of automobiles to the cemetery, where a eulogy to Sir William was delivered by the R. A. H. Laing, former pastor of the Joliet Universalist Church, and an old friend of the railroad man. Neither Lady Van Horne, nor her daughter Adaline were able to accompany the body the Joliet. The daughter’s name on a simple card was pinned to a huge wreath of lilies on the casket. Acting and honorary pall-bearers were selected among the sons of old residents who knew Sir William.
Mr. R. E. Armstrong during a long residence in SA,, had many opportunities of meeting Sir William Van Horne. His duties as a journalist and his official duties as Mayor of St. Andrews brought him into intimate relationship with the distinguished Canadian, who made his summer home on Minister’s Island and was a frequent summer and winter visitor to St. Andrews. The tribute Mr. Armstrong today pays Sir William is not the ordinary expression of appreciation for one who had done big things in a big way, but is rather a sincere personal tribute of appreciation from one who frequently got closer to the great man than did those in more intimate relationship with him, and had unusual opportunities to learn his views and opinions on important questions of transportation, trade, politics, arts, literature, etc. St. Andrews will miss Sir William and will long cherish recollections of his visits, of his interest in the welfare of the community and of his plans for its future---plans which included years of work in developing and beautifying his own beautiful property.—St. John Globe, Sept 14.
The Late Sir William Van Horne. An Appreciation
R. E. Armstrong
To the Editor of the Globe.
Sir:--As one who for over twenty years enjoyed the very great privilege of an intimate, personal acquaintance with Sir William Van Horne, will you permit me to pay a brief tribute of regard to his memory.
It was in the early 90’s that Sir William Van Horne paid his first visit to St. Andrews. He went there at the suggestion of Mr. F. W. Cram, one of the promoters of the St. Andrews Land Company, who was desirous of securing his personal interest in the place. The first visit was fruitless. The weather was bad, the place did not look as attractive as it had been pictured to him, and he declined to take hold. Another visit was arranged. this time it was typical St. Andrews weather. The sun shone on a glorious picture of bay and river and island. Sir William was enchanted with the scene and surrendered at once. Without loss of time he purchased from Mr. Marshall Andrews the western end of Minister’s Island,, and began the erection of a summer home. It was a rough, barren spot when Sir William took hold of it, but he recognized its possibilities, and before long he made it one of the most attractive and beautiful localities in Canada. He built a magnificent summer home of natural sandstone,, erected mammoth barns, greenhouses and vineries, laid out a splendid road system, planted fruit trees and flowers, and then invited the public to come and share with him the enjoyment of Nature’s beautiful gifts. Thousands of visitors from all parts of the North American continent took advantage of this offer, and the fame of his beautiful grounds became known from ocean to ocean.
Sir William took a keen personal delight in the development of his summer property. he liked to have men working around him. He loved his splendid Clydesdale horses, his well bred cattle, his beautiful bowers and grounds. It was the keenest satisfaction to him to know that the public appreciated the beautiful things in Nature that he had provided as much for their delectation as for his own.
Personally, Sir William Van Horne was one of the most versatile of men. Indeed, it is doubtful if there exists in Canada today one who possesses the varied natural talents and the genius which Sir William Van Horne possessed in such a marked degree. He was an empire-builder of the most pronounced type; his great mind contemplated stupendous things in railroad development; he was one of the best artists in Canada, his painting possessing artistic qualities of the highest order; he could talk art, literature, agriculture, political and financial economy, and talk them well and intelligently. There was scarcely a subject that he was not familiar with. He was s royal entertainer, and during the years that the resided in St. Andrews many distinguished people enjoyed his almost boundless hospitality.
To those who did not know him well, Sir William Van Horne presented a somewhat gruff exterior, but behind this brusqueness there beat a warm and tender heart, a heart intensely human. His domestic relations were singularly happy. He loved children and was never happier than when in their company. To see him romp and play with his favorite grandson was a most delightful sight.
Sir William Van Horne dabbled a little in politics, but he had no personal liking for the game. he was fond of saying that the only time he ever made a political speech in his life was during the late Federal campaign, when reciprocity with the United States was the chief issue. This he relentlessly opposed. he was somewhat disappointed with some of the subsequent turns and twists in party politics and did not hesitate to give expression to his feelings.
Sir William Van Horne manifested a deep interest in the material future of SA, and was ever ready to extend assistance and advice when called upon. The financial assistance which he extended toward the erection of the mammoth sardine works at Chamcook was as much for the purpose of benefiting the locality and the local fishermen as for his own enrichment. It was a matter of deepest regret to him that his hopes in this respect had not been fulfilled in their entirety.”
Canada and the British Empire are the poorer today for the death of Sir William Van Horne. he filled a large place in Canadian and Imperial affairs, and he filled it well. The work of his hands is indelibly stamped upon the face of Canada from one end to the other. Knowing him and his work as well as I do, I feel confident that nowhere will he be more greatly missed and nowhere will be more sincerely mourned than at the little town of SA, where for over twenty years he made his summer home, and where he was esteemed by rich and poor alike. The heartiest sympathy will go out of Lady Van Horne, to his son and daughter, and to the others members of his bereaved family.
Copy of telegram From Mr. R. B. Van Horne
Montreal, Sept 13, 1915
To G. K. Greenlaw, Mayor
St. Andrews, NB
Lady Van Horne, family and I send our sincere thanks to you and the Aldermen of St. Andrews for the kind sympathy and sentiments expressed in your message on the occasion of our great loss.
(signed) R. B. Van Horne