Genealogical and Family History
STATE OF MAINE
Compiled under the editorial supervision of George Thomas Little, A. M., Litt. D.
LEWIS HISTORICAL PUBLISHING COMPANY
[Please see Index page for full citation.]
[Transcribed by Coralynn Brown]
[Many families included in these genealogical records had their beginnings in Massachusetts.]
the family of Rich is a long time resident of southwest Maine, and among its numberous members are a number of men of wealth and prominence.
(I) Artemas Rich was born Dec. 31, 1801, died April 20, 1870. He married, at Yarmouth, Dorcas Loring Ring, born Aug. 5, 1804, died Oct. 9, 1846, daughter of Andrew and Lucy (Loring) Ring, of North Yarmouth.
Marshall N., Charles Ring, Francis Gardner, Mary Augusta (died young), and Mary Lyman.
(II) Marshall Nye, eldest child of Artemas and Dorcas Loring (Ring) Rich, was born in Freeport, Oct. 24, 1830, died in Portland Dec. 25, 1902. He was educated in the common schools of Freeport and Yarmouth, and in 1848 removed from the latter place to Portland, and soon afterward entered the printing establishment of Brown Thurston & Company, to learn the business. In 1854 he became bookkeeper for John A. Poor and manager of the State of Maine, newspaper. Subsequently he engaged in the job printing business on his own account, and in the publication of that journal which he purchased at a later date. In 1859 he removed to Baltimore, Maryland, to accept a position with the late George W. Porter, and as assistant on the staff of the Journal of Commerce. After the demoralization of business there consequent to the outbreak of the war of the rebellion, he returned in 1861 to Portland and assumed the management of the Commercial News Room in the Fox block on Middle street, and in company with Brown Thurston commenced the publication of the Portland Price Current and the Shipping List. In the forepart of 1862, at the suggestion of Mr. Rich, the Commercial News Room united its interets with the Board of Trade, and opened the present Merchants' Exchange Room on Exchange street, now conducted under the ausices of the Board of Trade. The publicatoin of the Price Current continued for ten years, until Mr. Rich was appointed by Governor Washburn, in 1867, deputy collector of customs at Portland, which office he held nearly nine years.
He was president of the Mercantile Library Association in 1872, and of the Maine Press Association in 1880-81. He was elected secretary of the Portland Board of Trade in Jan., 1864, and every year after that time he was unanimously re-elected to this position as long as he lived. He served through the administration of all the presidents with the exception of President Brown, and with this long uninterrupted service, had the distinction of being in point of service the oldest board of trade secretary in the country. During all these years he was also managing director of the Merchants' Exchange, a position which brought with it many onerous duties, and for which more than the ordinary qualifications are required. In connection with his work in the Board of Trade he had also compiled and publishes several statisitcal reports upon the condition of the trade and commerce at the port of Portland. From the time of its foundation in 1888, he was the editor of the Board of Trade Journal. He was also the secretary of the Maine State Board of Trade from its formation in 1889.
It may almost be said that he devoted his life to the Portland Board of Trade, which he had the pleasure of seeing grow from a very small organization to one of the most powerful associations of business men in the United States. Mr. Rich was one of the most active of those who were interested in the constuction of the Grand Trunk, or rather the Atlantic & St. Lawrence railroad.
As a mere boy he was in the company of John A. Poor, almost constantly, and it is not strange that he became filled with enthusiasm of the ardent promoter of railroad enterprises. Later on, in 1867, it was Mr. Rich who sent out the postal cards which called together the men who first took hold of the Portland & Ogdensburg scheme and made it possible that that road should be built. Again when fire devastated the Grand Trunk property in 1874 the Board of Trade took hold of the matter and proceeded to raise funds necessary to rebuild better than ever before. Again it was the Board of Trade which assumed the management of the plans to build the newest Grand Trunk elevator accomodations and put it through to its final state of completeness. The subect of harbor dredging and improvements was one in which Mr. Rich was always deeply interested, and his memory was a mine of information in regard to happenings on sea and land connected with Casco Bay and its islands. The last achievement in which Mr. Rich had a share was the establishment of the through train service between Portland and New York, although this was accomplished more in his capacity as secretary of the State Board of Trade. He conducted a wide correspondence with persons in all parts of the country, and was one of the best known men in his line of business in the world, as his name had gone abroad in all sorts of documents, all bearing the name of Portland and the imprint of the seal of the Portland Board of Trade. His singularly retentive memory enabled him to give even minute details of events some years ago, and this coupled with his agreeable dispositon and never failing courtesy made him a very pleasing person for any one to meet who sought to know anything connected with the history and business interests of Portland.
At a special meetin of the Board of Trade on Saturday morning following the death of Mr. Rich, the following resolutions were passed: "A busy life has suddenly closed. While in full possession of all his faculties and with interest unabated, Marshall N. Rich has unexpectedky been called to lay down his cares and burdens and has passed on. By the death of Mr. Rich the Portland Board of Trade has lost a valued member and a most efficient officer. For nearly forty years he has served as its secretary and has brought to that office patient industry and unfaltering devotion. To his great attention to detail has been due much of the readiness with which business of the board has been promptly dispatched. Mr. Rich was thoroughly alive to everything which pertained to the prosperity of the city and of the state. No matter which promised to redound to their good escaped his attention and no enterprise whether of magnitude or seemingly of minor importance was passed unnoticed. Every suggestion was sure of cordial reception and careful consideration. His urbanity and courtesy made him well known throughout the state and the summer tourist was always sure of kind treatment and valuable information."
In political faith Mr. Rich was a firm and consistent Republican; in religious convictions he was a Universalist and attended the Congree Square church for many years. He was made a Mason in Ancient Landmark Lodge in 1859, at the age of twenty-eigvht. He was senior deacon in 1863 and marshal in 1864. He was exalted in Mt. Vernon Chapter, became a member of Portland Council, Royal and Select Masters, after his return from Baltimore, and was knighted in Portland Commandery. He passed through the chairs of Mt. Vernon Chapter, was high priest in 1860 and for many years served as one of the members of the finance committee of that body, and as a member of the committee of inquiry of Portland Commandery. He was also a member of Ligoria Lodge and Eastern Star Encampment of Odd Fellows, joining the Lodge in 1872 and the Encampment in the same year, on Dec. 30, so that had he lived a week longer he might have celebrated his thirtieth anniversay of the Odd Fellows Encampment.
Marshall N. Rich married, in Portland, Nov. 7, 1855, Phebe H. Ulrick, born in Portland Aug. 28, 1835, died March 27, 1902. She was the daughter of John and Sallie Richards Ulrick. John Ulrick, born in Hamburg, Germany; Sally Richards born in Portland, Maine.
1. William Clifford, born Nov. 23, 1858, died May 2, 1899.
2. Ida Florence, born in Baltimore July 26, 1860, died Dec. 22, 1861.
3. Edith Adalena, born Sept. 14, 1862.
4. Mildred Porter, born Sept. 2, 1865, married May 29, 1889, Charles H. Bailey, of Portland.
5. Herman M., born Feb. 1, 1869, married April 12, 1899, Lillian Gertrude Dinsmore, of Boston, Mass.
6. Maurice C., mentioned below.
7. Maude Lisba, born May 19, 1871, married Oct. 12, 1897, Augustus Perry Brigham, of Salem, Mass., and died in Portland, Maine Jan. 27, 1899.
(III) Maurice Clayton, sixth child and youngest son of Marshall N. and Phebe (Ulrick) Rich, was born in Portland May 19, 1871. He was educated in the public schools of Portland, leaving the high school at the age of seventeen years. He then turned his attention to business pusuits and became a clerk in the Portland Board of Trade and Merchants' Exchange rooms, where he served a year. At the end of that time he took a position in the banking house of W. P. Rice & Company, of State street, Boston, and remained there until the firm went out of business a year later, 1890. Mr. Rich next became associated in business with John C. Page, who then had the most extensive fire insurance agency in the U. S. After passing two years in business with Mr. Page, Mr. Rich responded to the request of his father and returned to Portland, and agian entered the employ of the Board of Trade, as an assistent secretary. In that capacity he rendered service until the death of his father, Dec. 25, 1902. At a special meeting of the Board called on the next day, Maurice C. Rich was unanimously elected secretary to fill out the unexpired term of his father. The annual election was held two weeks later, and he was elected secretary, a position to which he has been annually re-elcted to the present time (1908). Mr. Rich was active in securing a building of its own for the permanent home of the Board of Trade, and was a prominent, energetic, industrious and most efficient member of the committee formed for the purpose of raising funds necessary to secure the success of the project which had for a long time been contemplated. Later he was equally efficient as a member of the house committee, to which was entrusted the task of remodeling the building to fit the desire of the Board. Besides attending to his duties as secretary Mr. Rich holds the position of editor of the Board of Trade Journal, which is without question the peer of any publication of its kind in this country. He is also actively interested in the Board of Trade Journal printing establishment. As a member f the Maine and the New England Trade Press Associations he is prominent and active. He was the Maine correspondent of the New England Grocer from 1894 to 1901, when his increasing duties compelled him to relinquish that position.
In politics Mr. Rich has been identified with the Republican party ever since he attained hs majority. In religion he is a Universalist, and is an attendant at the Congress Square church. He is an untiring worker and a diligent student, leaving himself little time for amusement.
Maurice C. Rich married in New York, April 4, 1908, Katherine Alberta Mackenzie, born in St. Stephens, New Brunswick, Sept. 26, 1881.