Thursday, December 31, 2009

Samuel Maurice Meglone of Lexington, 21 Aug 1857- 20 June 1907

Samuel Maurice Meglone was the son of Louis F. Meglone and Lucretia Isabelle Taylor. He may have been born in Louisville but spent the majority of his life in Lexington. His father died in Kansas City, so it is possible his father worked on the railroad and Lucretia and children lived in Louisville at the time of Louis’ death.

Samuel M. Meglone seemed to be fairly educated, and at some point after his schooling he became a clerk possibly at the old courthouse in Lexington (the address listed in the directories matches that of the old courthouse).

The 1875-76 Lexington City Directory lists Samuel M. Meglone as a clerk at 65 E. Main, living at 223 S. Upper.

The 1880 census of Lexington lists Samuel "Maglone" age 22 as a clerk in a store, living in his mother's home. Within a short period of maybe a few years, Samuel had left his clerk position and took a position at a local clothier, and he remained in the clothing business up until the time of his death. He opened his own clothing store in the Phoenix Hotel in Lexington (where the Public Library now stands), and a photo of his shop can be seen in the book “Historic Photos of Lexington.” Google Map image of the location of the Phoenix Hotel (now Phoenix Park, and the public library).

Samuel M. Meglone married Frank George McCoy on 31 Oct 1883 and they had three known children: James Creed, Coleman Wright, and Mary Lucretia. These children will be discussed in separate posts. There is an infant by the name of S.M. Meglone buried at Lexington Cemetery that I believe to be a child of Samuel and Frank George (burial date 1 Nov 1887, Disposition number 9385, Section B, Lot 21, Part E 1/2).

Another surprising tragedy happened apparently in the home of Sam Meglone in the year 1887, as was reported in the Cincinnati Commercial Tribune on 1 April 1887, under the headline "Accidental Shootings":
"LEXINGTON KY  March 31 [?]-- Samuel Meglone a young merchant of this city while fooling with a twenty two caliber Flobert [?] rifle he thought not loaded accidentally shot Frances Wilson [?] a colored servant girl nine [?] years old over the right eye. She died about six hours afterward."
The microfilm image of this newspaper record is difficult to read, so the transcription might not be exact.

In the Morning Herald 6 Jan 1897:
Monday night burglars visited the furnishing houses of Graves, Cox & Co. and L.M. [sic] Meglone, on Main street, and Yent's grocery on Upper street. Entrance to Meglone's was effected through a rear window. The cash drawer was forced and 65 cents secured. Some gloves and jewelry, amounting to about $7, were also taken.
From Meglone's the thief entered Graves, Cox & Co.'s through a window leading to a flat tin roof, from which he broke a hole in the top pane of a window in the second story ran his hand through the hole, opened the catch, raised the lower sash and went in. Descending to the office he prized the cash drawer and secured $12.
Yent's grocery was entered from the rear, but nothing was taken.
Three rough looking men visited the meat store of Mr. T.C. Wright early yesterday morning and behaved very suspiciously. He thinks they were burglars, and that the arrival of his partner prevented violence from them.
These are the latest burglaries known of up to the hour of going to press, though daylight may expose numerous others. The police are vigilant, but seem too few in numbers to cope with the robbers."

The Lexington City Directory for 1898-99 lists S.M. Meglone under "Hats, Caps and Gents' Furnishings" with his shop at the SE corner of Main and Limestone.

Meglone's ad in the Morning Herald, 24 Jan 1898

1900 census of Lexington lists this family as "McGlone." S.M., F. George, J.C., Coleman, and Lucretia, living on Blackburn Ave. F. George is listed as having had 4 children and 3 are surviving.

Samuel’s business seemed to be prosperous until the time of an unfortunate fire in the store which may have been caused during the night by a spark from a lamp. Samuel may have never fully recovered from this loss and appears to have possibly gone into debt to creditors within about two years.

An account of the fire at Sam Meglone's store appeared in the Morning Herald on March 4, 1901:
The scene of the Phoenix fire of Saturday night was visited by large numbers of people yesterday. With the exception of the planked doors, there is no indication of a fire from without Meglone's store. But within everything is topsy-turvey. The floor is covered with wet, half-burned clothing, the tables are broken and burnt, and the damp, otherwise uninjured clothing, is hanging on lines to dry.
Mr. Meglone stated to a Herald reporter that he supposed a fire sale would be held as soon as the clothing could be invoiced, and that he hoped to re-establish the store later, though he couldn't say positively.
In the hotel all was quiet, and only the broken windows near Speyer's tobacco stand gave evidence that a fire had taken place. The guests spent the day in discussing their various escapes and relating exciting incidents which happened. Many hitherto total strangers had been made fast friends through some assistance offered during the fire. Such remarks as:
'Hello, how are you today; see you got your socks on.'
'Say, where's that overcoat you were wearing on your head last night?'
What became of that grip you threw out of the window,' etc. could be heard all during the day.
The origin of the fire remains a mystery. The only reasonable theory advanced is that a piece of burning carbon fell from the arc light to a stack of clothing in the centre of the store- the repetition of an accident which occurred without damage during working hours several days ago."

The news of the fire even reached to Alabama newspapers: the Alabama Age-Herald, on 3 March 1901, reported:
There Was a Panic, But Guesta Got Out Safely.
Lexington, KY., March 2-- At11:30 tonight fire broke out in the Phoenix Hotel block and caused a panic among the guests of the hotel, but all got out of the building safely. Lillian Vane, the leading lady of the "Christian" company, was rescued by means of a ladder, as were also several members of her company. The fire was confined to Meglone's clothing store, which adjoins the hotel proper, and was subdued at 12:30 o'clock. The loss on the store and contents will reach $30,000 and the damage to the hotel $10,000, covered by insurance."

The Morning Herald, 30 June 1901:
Mr. S.M. Meglone, the clothier, will this week and until about August 1, be located at No. 36 East Main street. His store in the Phoenix, which was recently visited by fire, will be remodeled and refitted. He will close out his present stock of goods at No. 36 East Main street and open with a new stock in the Phoenix about August 1."

In 1901 in The Bourbon News, September 6:

"The Lexington Democrat, in speaking of an ex-Parisian, says: Colonel Sam Meglone has secured the services of Willard Hutchison of Paris, as a window dresser. Mr. Hutchison is one of the very best window dressers in this part of the state and will doubtless prove of service to Mr. Meglone in his new and handsome store. The young man has for some time past been with Mitchell, Cassell & Baker in the same capacity. He commenced work with his new employer on Wednesday."
**Any chance this Willard Hutchison is a relation to John Hutchison who married Mary Morton Meglone, daughter of Montgomery?

Willard Hutchison worked for Sam Meglone for less than two years before returning to his former employer.
In The Bourbon News, 20 March 1903:
"Willard Hutchison, formerly of this city, who held a position with S.M Meglone, at Lexington, who recently made an assignment, has accepted a position with Mitchell, Cassell & Baker, in that city."

Some newspaper reports:
The Bourbon News, 10 March 1903:
"ASSIGNED.- Sam Meglone, dealer in clothing and gents' furnishing goods, doing business in the Phoenix Hotel building, in Lexington, assigned yesterday for the benefit of his creditors. Willard Hutchison, formerly of this city, was employed in the store as a salesman."

The Morning Herald. 10 March 1903:
J.N. Elliott Made Assignee and Store Is CLosed for Inventory of Stock. Creditors to Share Alike.
In the COunty Clerk's office yesterday was filed a deed of assignment from S.M. Meglone, the clothier, to J.N. Elliott. Immediately after the acceptance of the trust by Mr. Elliott the doors of the S.M. Meglone store were closed in order that an inventory of the stock might be made. The deed does not recite the schedule of the property but states that the firm's principal estate is in the stock of goods.
The conditions of the assignment are that the said S.M. Meglone is deeply involved in debt and has not sufficient property to pay all his debts, and is desirous of having his property distributed among his creditors equitably and according to law.
With this named as the consideration for the deed, he then assigns and conveys all of his property of whatsoever kind and whatever situated, both real, personal, and mixed, to J.N. Elliott for the purpose of the trust named in the deed.
The deed recites: 'Said property consists principally of a stock of goods located in the store room in the Phoenix Hotel Building, together with numerous accounts and notes against divers [sic] persons owing to the assignor and the lease on the store room.
Immediate possession of all the property is given to the assignee with instructions that he shall convert it into cash as in his discretion he may deem best and to use the proceeds for the satisfaction of all creditors.
The immediate case of the assignment was the filing of a suit by a Chicago manufacturing firm against S.M. Meglone for several hundred dollars. Mr. Meglone being unable to pay and wishing all of his creditors to share alike for their benefit."

The Morning Herald, 3 Oct 1903:
There was no session of the Circuit Court yesterday, the criminal term having been finished Wednesday.
In the COunty Court, J. Nathan Elliott filed a statement supported by the affidavits of George C. Webb, T. B. Watkins and D.G. Falconer, asking that an allowance be made him for attorney fees and services rendered as assignee of S.M. Meglone."

Sam Meglone then went to work for another clothing company before he succumbed to locomotor ataxia which took his life on 20 June 1907, three years after the death of his brother Lewis of Paris, KY.

Notice of his death appeared in the Lexington Herald 21 June 1907:
Succumbs After Ten Weeks to Dread Locomotor Ataxia.
Samuel M. Meglone, a well-known business man of this city, died at his residence, 517 West Third street, last night at 7'O o'clock, after an illness of about ten weeks, though he had suffered from locomotor ataxia, the desease [sic] which caused his death, for several years. Mr. Meglone is survived by his wife, who was a Miss McCoy, of this city, two city, two sons, a daughter, and a sister, Mrs. J.A. Willis [his half-sister, Anna Shoonmaker Bosworth]. His father, Louis P. Meglone, died in Kansas City several years ago. Mr. Meglone was forty-nine years of age and though born in Louisville, he spent nearly all of his life in this city.
For a number of years he was the head of the Meglone Clothing Company which was located in the Phoenix Hotel building. Financial reverses forced him from business and at the time of his fatal illness he was with the Kaufman Clothing Company, where he has been for several years. The funeral will be held at his late residence tomorrow at 3:30 o'clock.
The Rev. Preston Blake, assisted by the Rev. W.P. Hines, will officiate."

Samuel M. Meglone was buried on 21 June 1907 in Lexington Cemetery, Disposition number 16409, Section A, Lot 47, Part S 1/2.

His obituary would indicate that his younger half-brother Thomas Bosworth may have predeceased him.

517 W. Third Street, Lexington- possible home of the Sam Meglone family ca. 1907

Lexington Cemetery, Section A

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