Ohio County Public Library



Ohio County Public Library

Richard Robertson

Printer

-- from History of West Virginia, Old and New... Chicago: American Historical Society, 1923. (v.2, p. 47)

RICHARD ROBERTSON has been a resident of Wheeling more than seventy years. As a youth he learned the printer's trade, for a long time was identified with the printing business and at times had a part in the fortunes of several newspaper ventures. Mr. Robertson is now practically retired, though still financially interested in one or two banking organizations.

He was born at Hagerstown, Maryland, November 7, 1845. His grandfather was of Irish descent, spent most of his life at Hagerstown, and enjoyed a great reputation as an earnest and eloquent minister of the Presbyterian Church. He finally came to Wheeling, where he died. William Robertson, father of Richard, was born at Hagerstown, where for a number of years he was a merchant, and in 1849 moved to Wheeling and added his enterprise to the mercantile interests of the city about the time the first railroad came. He conducted a prosperous store at Market and old Union streets. He died at Wheeling at the age of sixty years. He was an old-line whig in politics, filled the office of alderman in Wheeling for a number of terms and was a very liberal contributing member of the First Presbyterian Church. He married Elizabeth Clark, a native of Hagerstown, who died at Wheeling. They had a large family of twelve children, and several of the sons became soldiers during the Civil war: John, who was a Union solider, left this community soon after the was and was never heard of again by his family; Mary, his twin sister, never married and died at Wheeling; William went into the Confederate Army, was killed in the Virginia Valley early in the war; James, a Union soldier and a mill worker in civilian life, died at Wheeling soon after the war; Clagget, a Union soldier, died at Wheeling at the age of thirty-five; Richard; Edward, twin brother of Richard, was also a printer, had a record as a Union solider and died at Wheeling; Harry, a mill worker, died at Wheeling; Marsh, who also worked in the mills, died at Wheeling; George died at Wheeling in early life; Sallie, of Wheeling, widow of William S. Meek, who was a printer; and Miss Helen of Wheeling.

Richard Robertson acquired a public-school education at Wheeling, but left school at the age of fourteen and entered a printer's office. He learned the printing trade according to the old-time standards of that profession, and for many years was recognized as one of the experts. In 1875 he established a printing office of his own, and conducted it for several years and also established The Wheeling Sunday News Letter, which he edited. He became associated with Mr. Ogden in printing an evening paper, but eventually sold his interests to Mr. Ogden. He continued in the job printing business for a number of years, but has been practically retired since 1903. Mr. Robertson is a director in the Center Wheeling Bank, of which he was one of the founders, and is also one of the founders and a director of the Community Savings & Loan Company.

He was twice elected and for twelve years held the office of clerk of the Court of Ohio County. He is a republican, has for many years been affiliated with Wheeling Lodge No. 28, B. P. O. E. He is owner of some valuable real estate in Wheeling, including his modern home at 96 Fourteenth Street, another fine dwelling on the same street and one on Nineteenth Street. At Wheeling Mr. Robertson married Miss Mary Emmert, a native of that city, where she was reared and educated.


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