Hudson County & Bergen County Biographies





GEORGE LOURIE WILEY, a well known electrical engineer and a prominent resident of Arlington, N. J., was born in St. Louis, Mo., on the 12th of May, 1849. He is the son of George W. Wiley and Elmira M. Gregg, a grandson of James Wiley, Jr., and Margaret Sutherland and of James Gregg and Abagail Wright, and a great-grandson of John Wiley and Matilda Lourie and Joseph Wright and Mary Sinclair. The Sutherlands and Louries were of royal Scotch blood and the Greggs and Wrights on his mother's side were members of the Society of Friends or Quakers. His father, George W. Wiley, was a stock broker and well known in Wall Street twenty-five years ago; he was an esteemed and prosperous citizen, and died in Chicago in 1899, having retired from business in 1878.

Mr. Wiley was graduated from the St. Louis (Mo.) City University and afterward spent one year in a classical and technical course under a private tutor. In 1868 he became a clerk in the New York Gold Exchange Bank, where he remained one year. He then associated hismelf with the Gold and Stock Telegraph Company of New York, and continued with that corporation for eleven years (1869-1880), serving successively as clerk, Assistant Superintendent, and Superintendent. In 1880 the Gold and Stock Telegraph Company's telephone business, which was then under his charge, was consolidated with that of the Bell Telephone Company of New York, forming what is now the New York Telephone and Telegraph Company. Mr. Wiley continued under the consolidation of the new company as General Superintendent for two years, resigning in 1882 to become President and General Manager of the Central Telephone Company in Mexico. He sailed for that country June 22, 1882, and continued with that company in Mexico for three years, until it was put on a paying basis. In 1885 he returned to New York and became manager of the Standard Underground Cable Company, manufacturers of electrical wires and cables, with offices in New York, Pittsburg, Philadelphia, Chicago, and San Francisco, and factories in Oakland, Cal., Pittsburg, Pa., and Perth Amboy, N. J. He is also President of the New York Electric Construction Company, a Director in several important electrical enterprises, and a member of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers and of the New York Electrical Society.

In these various positions Mr. Wiley developed great executive ability, and not only achieved success, but gained a reputation in electrical circles which extends throughout the country. He also has a wide reputation as an inventor and electrical expert. Though an active, engergetic, and patriotic citizen, he has always avoided public or political office, having devoted his entire time to the improtant duties which have devolved upon him and which he has discharged with ability and satisfaction. He is a Mason, an Odd Fellow, a Past Regent of the Royal Arcanum, and a member of the Loyal Additional. He holds membership in America Lodge, No. 1304, R. A., and in Arlington Council, L. A. He was raised in the Presbyterian Church and has affiliated with that faith. His career has been an active and successful one, and in both business and social relations he is highly esteemed and respected. As a resident of Arlington, N. J., he has contributed much to the growth and development of that attractive borough, and is prominently connected with many of its leading institutions.

On Christmas Day, December 25, 1873, Mr. Wiley was married to Josephine Griffiths Polhemus, of New York, a lady well known in literary circles. They have six children, three sons and three daughters, the eldest a son, being twenty-two years of age.

Source: Genealogical History of Hudson and Bergen Counties, New Jersey, Editor, Cornelius Burnham Harvey, The New Jersey Genealogical Publishing Company, 1900, page 173-174.

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