Death of Morgan M. Wheeler
While in a measure prepared for the mournful event, our city is do-day deeply saddened by the death of Captain Morgan M. Wheeler which took place at about six o'clock this morning.
Although still comparatively a young man, Captain Wheeler had reached the front rank among the business men of this city, and no man among us was more highly respected for his enterprise, integrity or character and genial social qualities, and the death of no citizen of Oswego would be met with more genuine regret. It is rarely we find a better illustration of the possibilities within the reach of every American boy who possesses integrity of character, good habits, enterprise and intelligence, than is illustrated by the career and success of Morgan M. Wheeler. And it is proper that such an example should be placed prominently before the mind of every American youth. He was born May 10th 1835, in the Town of Lyme, Jefferson County in this State, and come to Oswego with his mother and step-father in 1845, or when he was nine years of age. The only advantages young Wheeler possessed for acquiring knowledge were such as were offered by our public schools and the scanty time his limited means allowed him to attend them. In 1846 he commenced learning the milling business with Lewis and Beardsley, then one of the leading firms of the place, and in this business he continued six yeas. He then entered the service of Albert F. Allen as a salesman in a grocery and provision store, in which he continued one year. In 1853, he entered the services of Messrs. Dobbie & Manwarren, tug and vessel owners and continued in their service until 1850(1860 I think), as a clerk agent business manger etc., when he purchased from his savings the steam tug J. H. Bloore, the running of which me made a business success. The Bloore was succeeded by the Fred D. Wheeler, and soon after Captain Wheeler commenced investing his earnings in vessel property until he became the owner of a very valuable fleet of lake vessels, and he himself became known along the entire chain of great lakes as one of the most successful lake vessel proprietors of the day. Perhaps his most distinguished traits were his energy and his reliability. Clearheaded and intelligent he certainly was, had he understood his business thoroughly and having once made a contract his energy knew no rest until his part of the business was accomplished. Such traits of character as he possessed with his integrity of character which secured him the respect of all classes of people, would have made his life a success, no matter what field he had entered.
Captain Wheeler was a thorough going Republican, and in his politics, as in his business he was earnest and devoted, but never offensive. He recognized the duty every good citizen owes to the public and some eight years ago, although not desiring the position, he allowed himself to be elected to the Common Council from the Third Ward. In the Council his traits of character did not desert him. He made one of the most energetic and efficient alderman the city has ever had. He was twice re-elected making his entire term six years, and he would have continued in the council until the present day except for his absolute refusal to again be a candidate. Capt. Wheeler was to politically ambitions, and always had the full confidence of his party. He several times refused the nomination for Mayor, and he might have represented his city in the legislature had he given his consent.
Captain Wheeler was a public spirited as he as enterprising in his own business. He was one of the Founders of Grace (Presbyterian) Church in this city and has always taken an active interest in its prosperity. It was during his term in the Common Council that our city hall was built, and he took an active interest in its construction, and to his efforts and the members of the Council with whom he acted was it due that that edifice was constructed so economically and with such fidelity to the interests of the city. And from the time he entered upon an active business life no man in Oswego was more interested in its prosperity and well being.
Still in the very prime of life, Capt. Wheeler has been cut down in the midst of his usefulness. Such are the inscrutable ways of Providence. He as left as a legacy to his race the example of his integrity, his energy and his personal traits f character, which made him the useful, successful and respected citizen that he was. He leaves a devoted wife, an interesting family of children, a large circle of other relatives, and the whole community to mourn his loss.