“Memoirs of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania: personal and genealogical, Vol. 1
Northwestern Historical Association
Madison, Wis.: Northwestern Historical Association , 1904
Pg. 445 (Picture of FRANCIS J. TORRANCE)
Among the “Captains of Industry,” whose commanding ability and eminent success have made their names familiar wherever the English tongue is spoken, FRANCIS JOHN TORRANCE, first vice-president of the Standard sanitary manufacturing company, president of the Western Pennsylvania exposition society, president of the select council, and connected in many ways with numerous other positions of honor, trust and responsibility, stands out as one of the most remarkable men of this great industrial metropolis of America. He was born in the third ward, city of Allegheny, on June 27, 1859, and is still a resident of the city of his birth. MR. TORRANCE is one of Scotch-Irish ancestry, the son of FRANCIS TORRANCE, one of the earlier and best-known of the business men of Allegheny County, who came to America from the north of Ireland in 1850, when thirty years of age, and located in Allegheny County. He was one of the large family of FRANCIS TORRAN CE, grandfather of the subject of this sketch, who was a well-to-do farmer of County Donegal, in the north of Ireland. The father of FRANCIS J. was a man of sterling (pg. 476) worth and honesty, and soon took a leading part in the development of his adopted county. He was one of the founders of the Standard manufacturing company, of which he was president many years, and was the manager of the Schenley estate for over thirty years. He held many positions of local importance, which shows the confidence and respect of his fellow-citizens. He was a member of the Allegheny city select council and of the school board for eighteen years, a trustee of the Baptist church of Allegheny and president of the board. FRANCIS J. was given a good education. He attended the public schools of Allegheny city and graduated from the third ward school in 1874. He took a course at Newell institute and completed his school education at the Western University of Pennsylvania. He entered upon his remarkable business career in connection with his father, first as a clerk and then as superintendent of the Standard manufacturing company, which position he held until the death of his father, at the age of seventy years, in 1886. After his father’s death, the son was appointed treasurer and general manager of the company in Pittsburgh, and is at present the first vice-president, with offices in the Arrott building. This company has one of the finest and most extensive enameling works in the world, located in Allegheny city. Over 1,000 men are employed, and branch offices are located in New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Buffalo, San Francisco and Montreal. MR.TORRANCE is also president of the Washington Street railway company, president of the Riverside land company, president of the Pittsburgh natatorium company, and president of the Western Pennsylvania exposition society, whose latest and most successful session (1902) closed in a blaze of musical glory under Sousa, Creatore and Damrosch. Few men have risen to such prominence at such an early age as MR. TORRENCE. Genial, kind, easily approached, courteous to old and young, rich and poor alike, he is first and foremost in every good work, whether of business, social, religious, benevolent, educational or civic importance. He is a steam engine so far as the accomplishment of hard work is concerned, but does it so easily and good-naturedly that the cares and struggles of business have failed to furrow his ruddy, almost boyish face, and he bids fair to grow younger instead of older-looking with the advancing years. MR.TORRANCE married MISS MARY R. DIBERT, daughter of DAVID and LYDIA (GRIFFITH) DIBERT, of Johnstown, Nov. 6, 1884. They have but one child, a daughter, JANE. MR. TORRANCE is a member of the Americus club, Pittsburgh, and was its president for two years. He is also a member of the (pg. 447) Duquesne club, of the Press club and of the Fulton club, New York city; also the Strollers and the Pennsylvania society, New York city. He is president of all the Allegheny select council, and is chairman ex-officio of all the standing committees of said council. In 1895 he was appointed by Governor Hastings commissioner of public charities of Pennsylvania, and was elected president of the State board of charities in 1902. MR. TORRANCE has been prominently mentioned for governor of Pennsylvania. Commanding the confidence and respect of all classes of his fellow-citizens as he does, he could be elected to any office of trust and honor to which he might aspire.
Note: Pittsburgh is spelled Pittsburg in the writing.
P.S. That is all I know what is written in this book.
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