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John W. Shearer (1830-1903)
Born in Albany, N.Y., engaged in lumbering business in Bay City, MI.

1883 biography. (Added Jan., 2010)

History of Bay County, Michigan, 1883


John W. Shearer was born in Albany, N. Y., August 19, 1833. In 1850 he moved to Detroit, and learned the carpenter and joiner's trade. At the expiration of his apprenticeship he accepted a position from his brother James as foreman. In 1850 he went South, and was engaged in different car-shops as a master mechanic. In 1860 he returned to Detroit, and entered into a co-partnership with his brother James, remaining here until the war broke out. He enlisted as private in the Second Michigan Infantry, and was promoted to lieutenant ; while at Yorktown was discharged, and returned to Detroit. In 1865 he came to Bay City, and took the contract of putting in the machinery in D. G. Arnold's sash and blind factory, after which he engaged with his brother James in the mill.

In 1878 he entered into a co-partnership with H. Watkins in the carpenter and joiners' business, which they still continue. He was married June 30, 1866, to Mary E. Larued, of Ohio, and has three children.

Death notice. Contributed by Jim Petrimoulx - March, 2011.

Bay City Tribune Thursday May 31,1903

Death Came Unexpected

John W. Shearer Stricken With Heart Disease
Yesterday Morning While in His Home Without Warning
and Due To Heart Disease
News Came As Shock to His Many Friends
- Was Long a Resident And Well Known

John W. Shearer, builder and contractor died almost instantly at his home 412 North Jackson street at 8:45 yesterday morning from heart disease. He had been suffering for some time from a slight affection of the heart, but not to the extent of it interfering with his daily appearance among his friends and about the city.. No one was present when death came, Mr. Shearer having just replied to his wife, who was in another room, that he would lace his shoes and assist her in hanging a curtain. He was in his usual health and had been joking with his children. The first intimation of the attack came when his body struck the floor. Medical assistance was summoned but death came before the physicians arrival.

The deceased is survived by a widow and three children , J. Irving, Fred E. and Minnie E. Shearer He was a member of the board of public works, being elected its chairman a second time a few weeks ago and being in his sixth year of service on the board. He was a member of the City Commandry, Knights Templar, and the funeral will take place Sunday afternoon at 2:30 from the residence under the auspices of that body. He has resided in Bay City 38 years.

John W. Shearer was 72 years old but with the exception of the slight affection of the heart so well preserved that he usually referred to this age humorously as "72 years young" . He was born in Albany, N.Y., August 10,1831 .He went to Detroit in 1850 and engaged in carpentering and contracting. In 1856 he went to Alabama, where he served as a master mechanic in several car shops and in 1860 returned to Detroit. In June 1861 he enlisted in Co. F Second Michigan infantry and went through various grades of promotion as a non-commissioned officer to the first lieutenancy of his company, resigning in 1862. He received a slight wound at one of the earlier engagements of the civil war. He returned to Detroit and in 1865 came to Bay City, working in a mill. In 1878 he entered a partnership with H. Watkins in the carpenter and joiner business and in contracting. He was married to Miss Mary E. Larned of Mentor, O in 1866. As a member of the board of public works, Mr. Shearer rendered the city valuable services. The municipal building was constructed under his superintendence and in private work the First Baptist church, the two Shearer blocks , the government building ,several hose houses and other buildings were erected under his direction. He retired from active work about eight years ago. In Masonic circles he was prominent having at one time been worshipful master of Bay City lodge, F & A. M.

Additional Notes.

    1879 - Directory, Bay City, Mich.

  • Bay City Lodge F. & A. M., No. 129 Meetings at Masonic Hall, Wednesday evening on or before full moon. James M. Laing, W.M.; Charles B. Cottrell, S. W.; John W. Shearer, J.W.; William A. Young, Sec.; John Rose, Treas.; A. L. Stewart, S.D.; W. J. Austin, J. D.; Geo. F. Hood, Tyler.

    1883 Directory, Bay City, Mich.

  • Shearer Block n e cor Water and Center.
  • Shearer Bros (G. Henry, James B. and Chauncey H.), Real Estate n w cor Center and Washington.
  • Shearer, Chauncy (Shearer Bros), res n w cor Center and Farragut.
  • Shearer, George H. (McDonald & Shearer), res n e cor 5th and Farragut.
  • Shearer, G. Henry (Shearer Bros), res 814 N Monroe.
  • Shearer, James B. - (Shearer Bros), bds n e cor Center and Monroe.
  • Shearer, John W. - (J.W. Shearer & Co.), res 412 N Jackson.
  • Shearer, J W & Co. - (John W. Shearer, Harvey P. Watkins), Contractors and Builders and Mnfrs Sash, Doors and Blinds s s 12th bet Johnson and Trumbull.
  • Shearer, Wm. - fireman Streamer Arundel.

    1900 Census Bay City, Mich.

  • Shearer, John W b. Aug. 1830 New York
  • Mary E wife, b. Jul. 1840 Ohio
  • J Loving(?) son, b. Aug. 1868 Mich.
  • Minnie E daughter, b. Nov. 1873 Mich.
  • Fred E son, b. Dec. 1877 Mich.

    1903 Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, Mich.

  • John W. Shearer, died May 15, 1903, was a member of the Bay City Lodge No. 129, of the Free and Accepted Masons.
Related Pages/Notes

John W. Shearer

Related pages:
Shearer, James
Watkins, Henry P.
Bay Co. Civil War History
People Referenced
Arnold, D.G.
Austin, W.J.
Cottrell, Charles B.
Hood, George F.
Laing, James M.
Larned, Mary E. (wife)
Rose, John
Shearer, Chauncy H.*
Shearer, Fred E. (son)
Shearer, G. Henry*
Shearer, George H. (bro)
Shearer, James (bro.)
Shearer, John W. (subject)
Shearer, J. Irving (son)
Shearer, Minnie E. (dau.)
Shearer, William
Stewart, A.L.
Watkins, Harvey P.
Young, William A.
* nephew.
Subjects Referenced
2d Mich. Vol Inf.
Albany, NY
Arnold Sash/Blind
Bay City, MI
Civil War
Detroit, MI
First Baptist Church
J W Shearer & Co.
McDonald & Shearer
Mentor, OH
Shearer Bros.
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.