Bio: George L. Lloyd, 1839

Contact: on Thu, 15 Feb 2001




----Source: History of Clark County, Wisconsin (1918), by Franklyn, Curtiss-Wedge

Mr. and Mrs. George L. Lloyd

GEORGE L. LLOYD, one of the notable pioneers of Clark County, still surviving, whose early life was crowded with interesting experiences, was born in Lake County, Ohio, fifteen miles east of Cleveland, Aug. 9, 1839. His parents were Lester and Sarah (Osborn) Lloyd, the father born at Bloomfield, Mass., on the Connecticut River, son of John and Roxana (Ramey) Lloyd. John Lloyd was also a native of Massachusetts, some members of the Lloyd family settling in that state at an early date and taking part in the Revolutionary War. Others settled in Virginia and Pennsylvania. John, the grandfather of our subject, removed from Massachusetts to Trumbull County, Ohio, where it seems he became a large land owner, as he gave to two of his brothers 500 acres each. His three children were Thomas, Lester and Roxana, who all grew to maturity and accompanied their father to Ohio, settling on the tract of land he purchased there. Thomas Lloyd was killed by being thrown from a horse during a military parade. The sister, Roxana, married a Mr. Smith. Lester Lloyd was an officer in the Ohio militia and a very patriotic man.

He was a Democrat in politics but held no public office. He and his wife had nine children: Thea, Charles, Elizabeth, Anna, Robert, Lester, George L., Hattie and Almira, of whom only Charles and George L. came to Wisconsin. George L. Lloyd in 1859, at the age of 20 years, joined a party of 37 persons who left Geneva, Ohio, for the gold fields of Denver, Colo. The far west was wilder then than it is today, and the journey-especially the overland route was fraught with many dangers. Only twelve of the party reached their destination, among whom was Mr. Lloyd. After following the occupation of a miner until September, 1859, without growing suddenly wealthy, he decided to come to Wisconsin, making the journey by stage to Iowa City and Davenport, then up the Mississippi River on the old steamer Itasca to La Crosse, from which place, in company with three others, he set out for the Black River district, intending to join his brother, Charles, who was then on a farm near Loyal. That winter he spent in a camp on Popple River, engaged in logging, and from the spring to the fall of 1860, was with his brother on the farm, helping him to build his barn. He also practically built the first schoolhouse in that section. He then worked for Mr. Bright, a logging foreman, in the woods.

The winter following Mr. Lloyd had a logging camp of his own on Popple River, it being known as No. 281. A part of his crew were drafted for service in the Civil War, but he continued his operations and subsequently spent many years in the lumbering industry. In 1869 Mr. Lloyd formed a partnership with 0. P. Wells in the hardware business at Neillsville and they continued together until 1873, in which year he bought out Mr. Wells' interest and subsequently operated the business for himself, also engaging in logging. The latter occupation he followed on all the branches of Black River, except Wedge's Creek. The store which he and Mr. Wells established was the first in Neillsville. The first year Mr. Lloyd obtained his supplies from Sparta, to which place he often walked; also walking down the Black River, floating his lumber, and returning on foot with pork and bread. In 1877, Mr. Lloyd built the white brick building now occupied by the Cash Hardware Store. He also, in company with Judge Dewhurst bought a lot, 66 feet front and 100 feet deep, and, subsequently buying the Judges interest, erected a store building, breaking ground May 7, 1877. Before winter he had his store stocked with $30,000 worth of goods. This proved an unfortunate investment, however, as business was exceptionally bad, the contractors going bankrupt on account of lack of snow, and Mr. Lloyd, himself, losing one-half of his investment. He saved himself only by putting in tram-cars on which he got logs to the river to float down with the rise of water. As there were but a few logs floated down he got a good price for his, which helped materially to recruit his finances. He also secured an extension of time on payment for his stock and was finally able to pay up his indebtedness, though he lost several thousand dollars. At that time he was selling the very finest kind of lumber at $10 per thousand feet.

Mr. Lloyd helped to locate the railroad from Merrilan to Neillsville, constructed in 1881, working with the engineers, and contributing money and tools gratis for the benefit of the community. In 1885 he sold out his hardware store to North & Davidson. He then speculated in southern pine and also became interested in the timber lands of the state of Washington, where his son Clyde, a veteran of the Spanish-American War, is now located. This son, whom he helped to start in the timber business there, now has holdings of 100 million feet of timber. Mr. Lloyd's present fine residence in Neillsville was built in 1895 and stands on a tract of forty acres on the edge of the city. Mr. Lloyd was first married to Dora Marshall, who died, leaving one child named Dora, who is also deceased. His present wife, Ida, is a sister of his first, and of this second union five children have been born: Glenn, Clyde, May, Irene and Lois. Glenn is now inspector for several lumber companies in the state of Washington and also cargo inspector at Victoria, B. C. Clyde, already mentioned in part, is intimately connected with his father in timber speculation and is connected with the Cedro Veneer Company, of Cedro Valle , Wash. May is the wife of Lewis B. Ashbaugh, of Chippewa Falls. Irene resides at home, and Lois is the wife of Thomas E. Barnhardt, Of Dixon, Ill. Robert Lloyd, an elder brother of our subject, long a resident of Ohio, and now aged 86, is spending his declining years with the latter at Neillsville, the brothers being closely united by ties of affection.



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