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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company; Elwood Roberts, Editor.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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MRS. W. HODGSON BENNETT. William Hodgson Bennett, deceased, the husband of the subject of this sketch, was a native of Elkton, Maryland, although for many years one of the best known residents of Norristown. He was born March 7, 1847, and died January 4, 1904.

Mr. Bennett was educated in the public schools of Elkton, his native town, which is the seat of justice of Cecil county, Maryland. There he acquired the rudiments of an education which was very much broadened by contact with the great world of business in which he afterwards moved. On leaving school he entered the store of an uncle in the town of Elkton, where he remained a number of years, and became familiar with business rules which became valuable to him in after life. On reaching manhood he went to Philadelphia, where he engaged in the china and queensware business on Market street, which business he still followed at the time of his death, making a trip daily to the city for that purpose. They were wholesale and heavy importers. His widow still has in interest in the business at the same place.

Mr. Bennett married, October 29, 1884, Mrs. Flora (Shannon) Howell, widow of J. Robert S. Howell, of Philadelphia. Mrs. Bennett is the daughter of Mr. George Shannon, the well known and highly esteemed cashier of the First National Bank of Norristown. Mrs. Bennett had no children by either marriage.

Mr. Bennett was a member of the Republican party, in politics, but he never sought or held office, preferring to give strict attention to his business interests. He had an excellent war record, having enlisted in the Sixth Regiment of Maryland Volunteers at the beginning of the rebellion as a drummer boy. As time passed he was promoted to the position of drum major. He was captured by the Confederates and was in Libby Prison for three months, in which place, in common with other Union prisoners, he encountered the most severe hardships. Mr. Bennett was a man of amiable and kindly qualities which greatly endeared him to a large circle of friends. He was much respected as an enterprising and public spirited citizen, always interested in whatever promised to promote the welfare of the community of which he was an honored member. In 1890 he made a trip to Europe for his health. He attended the Episcopal church.

Mrs. Bennett resides in a handsome home on DeKalb street, bought by her husband but a short time before his death, which was sudden and a great shock to his many friends in Norristown and elsewhere. As a business man, a citizen, and in every relation of life, Mr. Bennett stood high, and few men were more appreciated or more kindly remembered than he. (For genealogy of the Shannon family to which Mrs. Bennett belongs, see the biographical sketch of George Shannon, elsewhere in this work.)

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This family biography is one of more than 1,000 biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company.  For the complete description, click here: Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania

View additional Montgomery County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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