JOHN ORR, STEUBENVILLE, O.
STEUBENVILLE GAZETTE, FEBRUARY 21, 1891.
This community was shocked
Friday evening by the announcement of the death of John Orr, an old and
one of the most prominent citizens of Steubenville, which occurred at 4
o'clock. The cause of death was jaundice, and he had been confined to his
house but a few days.
Mr. Orr was born at
Ballyhalbert, near Belfast, Ireland, November 29, 1827, and came to
America in 1846, first locating in Pittsburg, He remained in that city
only a short time, coming to Steubenville, where he entered the grocery
store of his uncle, John Orr, at the corner of Third and Washington
In 1851 he opened a retail
grocery on the opposite corner, which business he continued up to 1860,
when at the death of his uncle ho returned to the old store. He remained
in the retail grocery business up to 1867, when he engaged in oil
refining, building a plant below the Jefferson Iron Works. In 1877 he also
engaged in oil refining in Pittsburg, but two years later he sold the two
plants to the Standard Oil Company, resuming the retail grocery trade at
the "Old Orr Corner."
In 1882 he erected the
large block at the corner of Market and Fifth, and taking his son Robert
into partnership, engaged in the wholesale grocery trade, in which he was
very prosperous, his house at his death having a solid standing, the
result of business sagacity and honest dealing.
In 1855 he was married to
Mary Jane Orr, the issue being five children, Robert, John, Will, Mary,
and Annie, who, with the wife, survive him. He was a public-spirited
citizen, a man of enterprise and wholesome influence, always taking an
active interest in public improvements. It was during his membership of
Council in 1868 and largely through his influence and persistent efforts
that the sidewalks were widened and many of the street lines wore
straightened and the city began to emerge from its village life. It was
also largely through his influence as a councilman that the first steam
fire-engine was purchased. He was one of the Trustees of the Union
Cemetery, was in the directory of the old Jefferson Fire Insurance
Company, of the old Jefferson National Bank, and was a Director in the
Steubenville National Bank at his death. He was a friend of the Y. M. C.
A., to which organization ho was a liberal and hearty contributor. He was
a member of the Humane Society, and contributed largely to the support of
the work in the prosecution of which he was deeply interested. In fact, he
was prominent in all movements for the betterment of the community and its
citizens. He was of a jovial disposition, kind-hearted, and his acts of
kindness and charity will keep his memory green in the hearts of many
He was a member of the
Second Presbyterian Church and a regular attendant at this sanctuary. He
was a Democrat, in his younger days being one of the most active of the
local adherents of the party of Jefferson. He was one of the first Ohio
members of the Scotch-Irish Society of America, and no one took a deeper
interest in the annual proceedings of its Congress. Ho looked forward with
much pleasure to an anticipated attendance at the next meeting of the
Congress to be held in Louisvilie in May.
Mr. Orr was a good citizen,
and his death is deeply mourned by our people. His many good traits of
character endeared him to the hearts of many. His remains were interred in
the Union Cemetery Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock.