Christian Family on 1841 Isle of Man CensusEdward C. Christian was born on 25 Aug 1833 in Rushen, Isle of Man of parents James Christian and Margaret Corlett. The youngest of 9 children, Edward was baptized on 01 Sep 1833 in Kirk Christ (also know as Holy Trinity).1 Today, the church is most commonly known as Kirk Christ Rushen and is located in the parish of Rushen which is the south-western most province/parish of the Isle of Man. The church is between the villages of Port St. Mary and Port Erin, north of the Four Roads.
Home was located at Croit-e-Caley farm in the eastern end of Rushen, where Edward lived with his parents James & Margaret, 6 brothers & 2 sisters.2
After Edward’s mother Margaret passed away it appears the family may have had to move for a while to Kentraugh, Rushen,3 but it is not known for certain how long this was, if at all, as the family is later mentioned (after Edward's departure) to still be living at Croite-e-caily farm.4
When Edward came of age he found work as an Apprentice Tailor for Mr. Thomas James Quayle (8 Oct 1829 - 31 Dec 1883).5 Ed was noted as standing 5 feet 5 inches tall.
Ed's Arrival Manifest (1853)In late March 1853, Edward departed from Liverpool, England aboard the ship "Constitution" bound for America. He arrived in New York, New York on 15 Apr 1853.6 We don’t know what Edward did for the next two months, but he is said to have arrived in Berea, Ohio on 16 Jun 1853 where he would settle down and start his life in America.5
It is not known whether the decision to come to America was 100% his own or if, as an apprentice, he followed his master T.J. Quayle "over the pond". Mr. Quayle set his tailoring business up on Bridge Street in Berea.7 As a fellow immigrant from the Isle of Man, T.J. Quayle and Edward would become good friends though the years, extending far beyond the years of Ed's apprenticeship.
On 26 Nov 1857, Edward Christian married Maria Simons in Berea, Cuyahoga, Ohio.8 A newspaper article from their 50th Anniversary explains in detail "November 26, 1857, in the presence of a number of invited guests at the residence of T.J Quayle, on Seminary Street, Berea, Ohio. Mr. Edward Christian and Miss Maria Simons were united in marriage. The ceremony was performed by Rev. E.P. Clisbee, then pastor of Berea Congregational church. Miss Lucy Baker (Woodbridge) and Mr. C.F. Peebles of Berea were bridesmaid and best man respectively."7
It should be noted that T.J. Quayle applied and signed an application of intended marriage for Edward and another for himself a few days before the wedding took place.9 We do not know if they had a double wedding that day at T.J.'s house or not. The paper never mentions it.
Ed & Maria's Marriage Record (1857)Edward and Maria would live at 95 Beach Street in Berea, Cuyahoga, Ohio and raised a family there. They had 6 sons and 3 daughters. Edward’s Real estate was valued at $2500 and personal estate at $3000.10
Edward opened his own Tailoring Shop on Front Street in 1861 in Berea, Cuyahoga, Ohio and was in business for over 50 years until he passed away.5
09 Oct 1867 in Berea, Edward became a member of the Masonic lodge of Berea. Ed was one of the 16 founding members, or "Master Masons". Edward remained a Mason until his death 50 years later. His official title was "Captain of Host" for Berea (Quarry) Masonic Lodge, Chapter No. 134.1q
By 1879, Edward had become a well respected member of the community, as he was officially holding the title of the President of the Berea board of Education.12
From Men of Grit & Greatness (1897)In 1896, Edward Christian ran for and won a local election to become Mayor of Berea. A position he held for one 2 year term 1896–1897.13 His time as mayor was not without great obstacles. Edward had two noteworthy issues he had to deal with during his time in office. The first being the Berea Quarry Strike. Workers went on strike at the quarry, Berea’s main source of income and work for residents, and Edward had to help mediate and provide police protection after violence broke out and the quarry president declared that he would hold the village of Berea responsible for any and all damage to company property as a result of the strike. Edward responded by appointing a strong police force to patrol the village at night, protecting the citizens and businesses.14
Edward’s second great test as a mayor came on 23 April 1897 at about 5:45am when a great fire broke out in gale-force winds between Front, Bridge & N Seminary (now Riverside Dr) Streets and threatened the Council Hall. Ed sent a telegram to the Cleveland Fire Department requesting help as the village fire departments equipment was unable to handle the rate at which the wind was causing the flames to grow. Edward then proceeded to enter Council Hall with others and managed to save many of the town books and valuable papers. At the end of it all 30 buildings, including the village fire department, were lost to the flames. A total estimating $100,000 at the time. The newspaper that day read "Berea's Greatest Fire…Many Business Houses on Front and Bridge Street Laid Low…City Hall in Ruins."15
The fire broke out just a few shops south of Edward's tailoring shop on the "Berea Triangle" and northwestern winds carried the flames in the opposite direction, saving his business from any of the resulting damage, and thus his shop was not mentioned in any of the insurance claims.20
On the 14 Aug 1899, while Ed's friend and former boss T.J. Quayle was mayor, another fire erupted in Berea. This time a gasoline torch explosion that originated in the bicycle shop of Stencil Rumpf started a blaze that decimated Factory Street from Bridge Street to Front Street. It is noted that the Christian Tailor shop on Front Street sustained $50 worth of damage from the disaster which seems to have been covered by insurance.19, 20, B, C
Ed's Obituary (1917)On Thanksgiving Day 1907, the local newspaper reported that "the sons and daughters planned a grand reunion in honor of their 50th wedding anniversary. The children all came together, (except Willis and Ralph) and a most pleasant occasion it proved to be. After a sumptuous dinner, the family, consisting of parents, children, 14 grandchildren, and two great grandchildren were grouped for a portrait by [photographer] Mikolajcyk. Among the guests were Mrs. Christian's sister, Mrs Robinson (Mary Ellen Simons) and daughter from Earlville, Iowa."7
Maria died on 26 Jun 1911 in Berea, Cuyahoga, Ohio from Pulmonary Tuberculosis. She was buried on 28 Jun 1911 in Woodvale Cemetery (7535 Engle Road) in Berea.16
Edward died at 5:15 A.M. on 06 Feb 1917 in Berea, Cuyahoga, Ohio after slipping on ice and falling February 1st. He died from his injuries, or as the Medina Gazette wrote "shock", 7 days later.17
Ed was buried on 09 Feb 1917 in Middleburg Heights, Ohio at Woodvale Cemetery (7535 Engle Road). A double funeral was held at the family home on 95 Beech St. in Berea for Ed and his son George who passed away a day later on 07 Feb.18
James Christian, 14 Sep 1791 - 22 Aug 1871
Margaret Corlett, 03 Oct 1790 - bef 1851
Maria Simons, 02 Jun 1841 - 26 Jun 1911
- George Edward Christian, 22 Nov 1858 – 07 Feb 1917
- Francis Emerson Christian, 04 May 1860 – 24 Sep 1873
- Frederick Howard Christian, 17 Jul 1862 – 27 Aug 1882
- Sarah Maria Christian, 21 Sep 1865 – 16 May 1938
- Hugh Stowell Christian, 22 Mar 1867 – 05 Jan 1933
- Emma Florence Christian, 02 Oct 1870 – 16 Feb 1941
- Willis Alfred Christian, 30 Jul 1873 – 30 Dec 1941
- Alice Bertha 'Allie' Christian, 19 Sep 1875 – 22 Jul 1944
- Ralph Emerson Christian, 18 Aug 1878 – 20 Sep 1960
A When son Fred dies in 1882, his obituary makes mention of the funeral being held at the family home on Beech Street. While an exact address is not listed, we know per Ed's obituary in 1917 that their address was 95 Beech Street. It's fairly safe to assume the family lived in the same home on Beech Street between 1882-1917.
B Reports of a Berea fire were telegraphed out to newspapers, including the Virginian-Pilot (13 Aug 1899, pg8) on the 12th. This possibly unrelated fire broke out in the paint department of the Cleveland Stone Company's plant on the 12th but said to only cover 2.5 acres and all company property.
C In 2014, calculated for inflation, that $50 would amount to roughly $1,400 worth of damages. Whether this would have been damage to product or the business itself is unknown. However, to speculate, if it was building damage from the fire it would have been extremely minor and is more likely smoke and heat related damage to product and possibly windows.
New search results note a possible mother of longtime friend TJ Quayle could be a Catharine Corlett. If this is true, is she the sibling Catharine of Ed's mother Margaret? This would make Ed and TJ cousins, not just friends and business partners...