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The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

HILLIARD, RICHARD - The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

HILLIARD, RICHARD (3 July 1800-21 Dec. 1856), entrepreneur and president of the village of Cleveland, was born in Chatham, N.Y. Son of David Hilliard, he attended local schools for a few terms, but at 14, after his father's death, he left to take an apprenticeship in Albany, N.Y. He left the apprenticeship and became a clerk and teacher. In 1824 he went to work for the mercantile business of John Daly, quickly working his way up to partner without capital. That same year, the company relocated in Cleveland, and in 1827 Hilliard bought out Daly's interest in the firm and hired a resident partner in New York, Wm. Hayes. The two men stayed together as Hilliard & Hayes until Hilliard's death. Hilliard was an active member of Trinity Church. He also helped finance Erie Railroad. In the 1830s he and Courtland Palmer of New York and Edwin Clark of Cleveland began manufacturing and waterway development in the FLATS. Hilliard began his political career in 1830, serving 2 terms as president of the board of trustees of the village of Cleveland. In the first city elections of 1836, he was elected alderman, in that May serving on a select committee for the common schools of Cleveland. He joined the Board of Trade in 1849 and became a commissioner on the Board of Water Works in 1853. He was also a trustee for the Homeopathic Hospital College. In 1827, Hilliard married Sarah Katherine Hayes and had 9 children: Mary, Catherine, Julia, Richard, Newton, William, Laura, Betsey Matilda, and Charles Augustus. Hilliard died in New York City and was buried in ERIE ST. CEMETERY.

Last Modified: 17 Jul 1997 04:49:00 PM

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