A Biographical Dictionary of

Leading Living Men of the City of Detroit

Edited by Albert Nelson Marquis


A. N. Marquis & Company


Copyright, 1908 by Albert Nelson Marquis

Pages 64 - 66

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Special Thanks to Linda Bakken for transcribing these pages .

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Page 64

BLAIR, Frank W., banker; born in Oakland Co., Mich., May 13, 1870; son of Henry H. and Sarah (Warrener) Blair; educated in public schools of Birmingham, Mich; married at Detroit, Nov. 22, 1899, Ellen Ferrier. Began active career as clerk in drug store, Birmingham, continuing 1891-9; in state accountant's office as assistant state accountant, 1900-4; state bank examiner for state of Michigan, 1904-6; auditor Peoples State Bank, 1906-Feb., 1908 president Union Trust Co., Detroit, since Feb. 14, 1908; one of the owners of Bank of Riverside, Mich. Republican. Mason; member Knights of Pythias. Club: Detroit. Recreation: Baseball. Office: Union Trust Bldg. Residence: 59 Atkinson Av.

BLAKESLEE, Jay M., president Union Casualty Co.; born, Lansingville, N.Y., Oct. 1, 1864; son of Horce and Jennie (Sharpsteen) Blakeslee; educated in public schools of St. Louis, Mich.; married at St. Louis, Mich., Dec. 11, 1894, Etta M. Disinger. Began active career at 16 years of age as messenger for Western Union Telegraph Co., and followed telegraphing for Western Union and railroads until 1892; editor Penny News, a daily paper of St. Louis, Mich., 1892, agent and correspondent Detroit Free Press and Evening News; district manager for 12 years of the United States Health and Accident Insurance Co. of Saginaw, Mich., locating at Traverse City, 1897; has been president of the Union Casualty Co., health and accident insurance, since Feb. 1, 1907. Member Knights of Pythias, B.P.O.E., K.O.T.M., Knights of the Grip, D.O.K.K. (secretary Lalla Rookh Temple, Traverse City, 1902-07). Recreation: Fishing for trout in Northern Michigan. Office: 603 Majestic Bldg. Residence: 602 14th Av.

BLAND, Joseph Edward, lawyer; born, London, Ont., May 5, 1866; son of Robert and Ann (Caughlin) Bland; educated in public schools, business college and University of Michigan, receiving degrees of LL. B., 1895, and LL. M., 1896; unmarried. Began practice at Detroit, 1896; lieutenant commander and paymaster Michigan Naval Brigade; served in Spanish-American War, 1898, as member of crew of U.S.S. Yosemite; member House of Representatives, Michigan legislature, 1901-2 and 1905-6, and was elected to state senate Nov. 6, 1906. Republican. Episcopalian. Mason. Member Fine Arts Society. Club: Detroit Boat. Recreations: Music and aquatics. Office: 510 Wayne County Savings Bank Bldg. Residence: 165 West Fort St.

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BLEIL, Herman J., manager Standard Trunk Co.; born Detroit, Nov. 23, 1857; son of George and Christina Bleil; educated in Bishop Union School; married at Detroit, 1884, Miss Matilda Schonith. Began active career in employ of Martin Meier & Co., Detroit, May 1, 1870, later making his home in Chicago and St. Louis; returned to Detroit, 1881, and was with Martin Meier & Co. until 1906, when became manager of the Standard Trunk Co., manufacturers of trunks, cases, ext., for commercial purposes, also local selling agents for Jacob F. Meier Co. Republican. Methodist. Member I.O.O.F. Office: 143 Jefferson Av. Residence: 456 Dix Av.

Page 65

BLESCH, August F., manger Standard Sanitary Manufacturing Co.; born, Baden, Germany, Aug. 30, 1848; son of Adam and Rosina May Blesch; came to America with parents, who located near Columbus, O., educated in public schools; married at Columbus, June 9, 1889, Frances Timmers. Lived on farm until 1860; worked in woolen mill, 1860-64, railroaded, 1864-67, and connected with plumbing trade as apprentice, journeyman and foreman, 1867-72; organized plumbing firm of Blesch & Kile, which continued 1872-79; was superintendent Columbus (O.) Water Works, 1879-83; organized the Columbus Brass Co. and was its president and manager, 1883-1901; disposed of interest Nov. 1, 1901, resigned his position and accepted management of the Detroit Works of the Standard Sanitary Manufacturing Co. of Michigan, inc., which office he now holds, being also secretary and member board of directors. President Employers' Association of Detroit, 1906-07; member Detroit Board of Commerce. Recreations: Boating and traveling. Office: 132-168 Clark Av. Residence: 257 Grand Blvd., E.

BLOMFIELD, Sidney J., real estate; born, London, Eng., Sept. 14, 1880; son of Rev. Frank and Charlotte (Williams) Blomfield; came to Michigan with parents at 6 years of age; student for 3 years at Olivet College; unmarried. Began active career as receiving clerk for the Pingree Co., 1901, continuing until 1904; studied law at night at Detroit College of Law, 1904-06; entered real estate and fire insurance business for self, 1904, and has developed a lucrative business in building houses, $3,000 to $4,000 each, and selling them to home seekers; built and sold 25 houses in 1906; proprietor Blomefield & Co., partner Northwestern Mercantile Co. Congregationalist. Member Masonic order. Recreations: Outdoor sports. Office: 88 Griswold St. Residence: 155 Henry St.

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BLOMSTROM, Carl H., president the Blomstrom Manufacturing Co., born, Grand Rapids, Mich., Apr. 11, 1867; son of Charles Gustav and Elizabeth (Carlson) Blomstrom; took special course in engineering at Grand Rapids, 1884; received degree of M.E. from International Correspondence School of Scranton, Pa.; married at Detroit, 1889, Anna Berglund. Began active career as mechanic in employee of F.C. Wells Pump Co., Chicago; was in Marquette, Mich., in manufacturing line, 1896-01; came to Detroit, 1901 and established the Blomstrom Manufacturing Co., builders of high grade automobiles, of which has been president and general manager from the beginning. Also manager Lake Shore Engine Works, Marquette; vice president and manager C.H. Blomstrom Motor Co., Detroit. Republican Lutheran. Member Masonic order (32), Shrine. Recreation: Automobiling. Office: Cor. Leib and Wright. Residence: 399 Clark Av.

Page 66

BLOOMGARDEN, Abraham J., wholesale produce; born in Germany, Aug. 22, 1862; son of Jacob M. and Leah (Kohnheim) Bloomgarden; came to America with parents, 1865; educated in public schools of Peoria, Ill.; married, Detroit, Apr. 6, 1886, Miss M Zohn. Was in meat business with his father for six years and in retail fruit and vegetable business for two years; has been engaged in wholesale produce and fruit jobbing in his own name since Aug. 1, 1888. Member Detroit Produce Exchange. Member of the Jewish church and of the Knights of Pythias. Recreation: Driving. Office: 33 Woodbridge St., W. Residence: 140 Pitcher St.

BLUE, Charles Frederick, Jr., manager Crucible Steel Co. of America, Detroit; born Memphis, Tenn., Jan. 16, 1883; son of Charles F. and Florence (Reiford) Blue; educated by private tutelage at Memphis and Jackson, Tenn.; unmarried. Began active career as mechanical and civil engineer, with the Mobile & Ohio R.R., working between St. Louis and the Gulf Coast; was next with Armour & Co., Chicago, in the charge of refrigerator lines in Tennessee and Mississippi; was in charge of railroad department of the First Sterling Steel Co., Pittsburg, Pa., and later was at St. Louis as Western manager for A. O. Norton & Co., of Boston; became identified with the Crucible Steel Co. of America, Pittsburg, Pa., and has been in charge of its business at Detroit since May, 1906. Episcopalian. Member Masonic order. Clubs: Country, Detroit Riding. Recreation: Horseback riding. Office: Cor. Wayne and Woodbridge Sts. Residence: Country Club, Detroit.

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BLUMENTHAL, David, secretary and treasurer American Paper Stock Co.; born, Russia, Sept. 15, 1862; son of Louis and Anna (Simons) Blumenthal; educated in Russia and in public schools of Indianapolis; married at Toledo, O., Nov. 8, 1885, Celia Epstein. Entered paper stock business, 1878, as member of firm of L. Blumenthal & Sons, and since 1895 has been secretary and treasurer American Paper Stock Co., wholesale dealers and garders of cotton and woolen rags, rubber, metals, etc. Also president American Lubricator Co. Republican. Jewish religion; trustee Congregation Shaarey Zedeck; member United Charities, and Talmud Torah Association. Member Board of Commerce, Loyal Guard. Recreation: Outdoor sports. Office: 297 Orleans St. Residence: 90 Alfred St.

BODA, Orville S., superintendent Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., Detroit; born, Dayton, O., Sept. 3, 1868; son of Fernandes O. and Rhoda (McNutt) Boda; educated in public schools; married at Indianapolis, Ind., Dec. 21, 1892, Bessie Lytle. Learned printing trade and engaged in newspaper work until 1894; became connected with Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. first as solicitor; was made assistant superintendent, 1897, and has been superintendent since 1900. Member Detroit Underwriters' Association (2nd vice president). Independent in politics. Methodist. Member Masonic order. Recreations: Outdoor sports, Office: 234 Woodward Av. Residence: 111 Delaware Av.

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