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George W. Ames (1852-1931)
Son of George C. and Sarah (Howell) Ames.

1892: Biography. (Added Nov. 2007)

Portrait and Biographical Record of Saginaw and Bay Counties, Michigan
1892: Portrait Publishing Company, Chicago


The gentleman whose portrait appears on the opposite page is one of the most active and pushing real-estate men of Bay City. His office, wherein many large deals are consummated, and hundreds of house and lots as well as thousands of acres of land exchanged is located in the Phoenix Block, where he has been engaged in his special line for the past three years. Since October, 1889, he had been a member of the firm of Brigham, Ames & Heatley, Abstractors, who have the business of the leading banks and railroads of this State, and the most prominent attorneys as well as other citizens.

Mr. Amesí real-estate business is entirely separate from the abstract office. He occupies two handsome offices at Nos. 304 and 307 Phoenix Block, and has the most complete office of the kind in the State, containing copies of the original plats of Bay County, besides maps giving the exact size of all lots, locations of sewers, water mains, street railways and belt line railroads of both cities. He publishes the largest list of property in the county and is a firm believer in printersí ink as he is the largest advertiser in any kind of business in the city. He is also Secretary of the Avondale Land Company, which is a corporate institution, made so by its charter dated June 22, 1891. This company has a capital stock of $25,000, and its officers are as follows: Joseph Turner, Chairman; George W. Ames, Secretary; A. A. Knopfel, Treasurer; and it includes among its directors and stockholders many of the most prominent men in this vicinity.

George W. Ames was born in Albion, N. Y., October 31, 1852, and is a son of George C. and Sarah (Howell) Ames. His father still lives and is engaged in the mercantile business. Mr. Ames was educated in the public schools of Erie, Pa., but his desire to follow railroading was so strong that at the age sixteen he secured a position as news agent on the Philadelphia & Erie Railroad, and at the age of seventeen accepted a position as brakeman on the Erie & Pittsburg Railroad, his run being from Allegheny City to Sharpsville, Pa. In 1870 he came to Detroit, Lansing & Lake Michigan Railroad (now the Detroit, Lansing & Northern) and October 4, 1872 was transferred to the Detroit & Bay City Railroad, then under the same management. The Michigan Central Railroad shortly afterwards purchase the road, under whose management he remained until May 14, 1888, during which time he held the position as passenger conductor for twelve years, the last six years his run being from Bay City to Mackinaw.

Believing the road to wealth was through the acquirement of real estate, Mr. Ames, in 1874 commenced to buy and sell property, and through agents in Detroit, Chicago and Bay City, he has been successful. Within three weeks from the time of severiing his connection with the Michigan Central Railroad he opened the offices which he now occupies, and that he has made his business a success in every particular is vouched for by the fact that he has had charge of most of the large real estate transactions made in the city and county since June 1, 1888.

Within the past three years Mr. Ames has built a number of modern house costing form $1,200 to $7,000, the last one completed being his elegant residence at No. 1908 Center Avenue. He has large property interests in Detroit, Chicago, Bay City and West Bay City, and is the sole owner of seventy-seven acres of land at Topinabee, which is located on Mullet Lake seventeen miles south of Cheboygan, Mich., and on the line of the inland steamboat line which runs between Petoskey and Mackinaw. It is also on the line of the Michigan Central Railroad which has four express trains daily. Topinabee contains a number of pretty cottages, first-class hotels, post-office, telegraph office, express office, etc. The property owned by Mr. Ames is platted and attractively laid out, most of it being on a terrace thirty feet above the level of the lake. Topinabee is rapidly coming to the front as one of the most desirable places in northern Michigan at which to spend the summer months.

Mr. Ames has resided in Bay City since May 1, 1874, and his home is presided over by his estimable wife, Jennie A., daughter of Guy E. Thompson. Mr. Ames is a member of Joppa Lodge, No. 315, Blanchard Chapter No. 59, Bay City Commandery No. 26, Knights of Pythia No. 23, Uniformed Rank, St. Georges Society, Bay City Club and Bay City Business Menís Association.

Addition Notes.

    1864 - Ames, George W., age 13, b. New York, enlisted in the U.S. Naval Rendezvous.

    1870 - Census: Michigan.

  • Ames, George - b. 1850, NY is living in household of Isaac Runyun.

    1874 - Michigan Marriages: Lapeer City, Lapeer Co.

  • Date: Nov. 18, 1874,
  • Groom: George W. Ames, b. 1852, Albion, N.Y.
  • Bride: Idalia Barnes, b. 1855, Hadley.
  • Official: Ed Little, pastor.
  • Withnesses: Mrs. C.B. Barnes and Permelia E. Barnes.

    1891 Michigan Marriages, Bay City, Mich.

  • Date: 17 Jun. 1891
  • Groom: Ames, Geo. W., age 38, b. NY, real estate. Parents: Geo. E. & Sarah (Howe) Ames.
  • Bride: Thompson, Jennie A., age 39, b. NY, school teacher. Parents: Guy E. & Sarah E (Lewis) Thompson.
  • Official: William Clark, paster Presbyterian church.
  • Witnesses: E. N. McAlister (Detroit) & Miss Adae Talbert (Minniapolis)

    1893 Directory, Bay City, Mich.:

  • Ames, Miss Ellen M, bds 1908 Center ave.
  • Ames, George W - Sec Bay Co Abstract Co. (Ltd) and Avondale Land Co. (Ltd), Real Estate, 307 Phoenix block, res 1908 Center ave.
  • Ames, Roy S - bicycles, 307 Phoenix Blk, bds 1908 Center ave.

    1897 - Directory: Bay City, Mich.

  • Ames, George W. (Ames & Bump) Real Estate and Loans, Sec. Avondale Land Co. (Ltd), 106 Phoenix Blk, entrance Center Av, res 620 N Johnson. Long Dist. 1283
  • Ames Ray F. bkkpr, bds 620 N Johnson.
  • Ames, Roy elk G W Ames, bds 620 N Johnson.
  • Ames, Lena P bds 620 N Johnson.
  • Ames, Wm M bds 620 N Johnson.

    1900 Census, Bay City, Mich.:

  • Ames, George W. - Age 48, NY, widow.
  • Ames, Roy S, son - age 26, b. Mich.
  • William M., son - age 25, b. Mich.
  • Vena P., daughter - age 18, b. Mich.
  • Ethal P., daughter - age 14, b. Mich.
  • Palmer, Nelie, cousin, age 27, b. Mich.

    1908 Michigan Marriages: Bay City.

  • Date: Feb. 18, 1908. (2nd marriage)
  • Groom: George W. Ames, age 55, b. Albion, NY - parents: George C. Ames & Sarah Howle.
  • Bride: Marry L. Hogle, age 34, b. Bay City, MI - paents: James S. Hogle & Lillie Gordon. (Marry died after June, 1930, age 56)
  • Official: Patchell, minister.
  • Witnesses: Vena P. Ames (Bay City) & Roberta Hogle (Detroit).

    1931 - Michigan Deaths: Bay City, Bay co.

  • George W. Ames died Feb. 13, 1931, son of George C. Ames and Sarah Howell.

Reference Notes & Pages

George W. Ames

George also owned the Pine Ridge Cemetery, which he purchased from Mrs. Sophia (Birney) Blackwell in 1900. However, in 2013 Edward Clinton reasearched the Ames' death records and found no direct connection to Pine Ridge. Ames owned two companies, Northern Title and Trust and an insurance agency. It's believed the cemetery was handled through the Northern Title and Trust business.
Related Bay-Journal Pages
Related pages:
Bay City Rotary Club
Pine Ridge Cemetery.
{Video: Home, Center Ave.}
Hogle, James S.
People Referenced
Ames, George C. (father)
Ames, Ellen M (dau.)
Ames, Ethal J. (dau.)
Ames, George W. (subject)
Ames, Ray E. (son)
Ames, Roy S. (son)
Ames, Vena P. (dau.)
Ames, William M. (son)
Barnes, C.B.
Barnes, Idalia (1-wife)
Barnes, Permelia
Clark, Wm. pastor
Gordan, Lilliea
Hogle, James S.
Hogle, Marry L. (3-wife)
Hogle, Roberta
Howell, Sarah (mother)
Knopfel, A.A.
Lewis, Sarah E.
McAlister, E.N.
Little, Ed,pastor
palmer, Ethal P (cousin)
Patchell, Rev.
Talbert, Adae Miss
Thompson, Gu2
Thompson, Jennie A. (2-wife)
Turner, Joseph
Subjects Referenced
Albion, NY
Allegheny City, PA
Avondale Land Co.
Bay City, MI
Bay Co., MI
Brigham, Ames & Heatly
Cheboygan, MI
Chicago, IL
Detroit & Bay City R.R.
Detroit, Lansing, L. MI R.R.
Detroit, Lansing, Northern
Erie, PA
Erie & Pittsburg R.R.
Mackinaw, MI
Michigan Central R.R.
Mullet Lake, MI
Northern Title & Trush
Philadelphia & Erie R.R.
Phoenix Block
Presbyterian Chuch
Sharpsville, PA
Topinabee, MI
West Bay City, MI

WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.