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Below is a family biography included in the book,  Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company.  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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DARWIN E. SAWTELLE, an enterprising business man of Bethlehem, is engaged in the manufacture of soft drinks, and has the largest bottling works in the place. His present location is No. 313 Third Street, South Bethlehem. He controls a large trade, and his three delivery teams are constantly on the road in and between the towns of Freemansburg, Coopersburg, Hellertown, Hecktown, Allentown, and in the different parts of Bethlehem, where his main trade is found. Mr. Sawtelle is a native of Chicago, and has evidently brought to bear upon his business enterprises the sagacity and perseverance in effort which are pre-eminently characteristic of Chicago men.

The birth of our subject occurred October 10, 1852. His parents, Albert D. and Eliza J. (Palmer) Sawtelle, were natives respectively of Cleveland, Ohio, and Rockford, Ill. His paternal grandfather, Dr. Charles Sawtelle, was born in Alsace, France and was one of the most notable physicians in Cleveland, where, his death occurred. One of the finest avenues of that city was named in his honor. The maternal grandfather of our subject, Seth Palmer, was born in Canada, and settled in Winnebago County, Ill., where he became an extensive farmer.

Albert D. Sawtelle was one. of those who went to California in 1849. During the five years succeeding he made three trips to the Pacific Coast, and was quite successful. On his return he engaged in merchandising in Kenosha, Wis., where he conducted a large business. From that place he went to Chicago, and was engaged in business on State Street, between Washington and Madison, until he retired from active life. His death occurred at the age of fifty-four, at the home of our subject, who was then living in South Dakota. The wife and mother died in 1878, aged forty-seven years, leaving three children, of whom our subject is the eldest. She was a devoted member of the Episcopal Church.

Until twenty years of age D. E. Sawtelle resided in Chicago, where he attended school. At the age of fourteen he entered the employ of the United States Express Company, with which he was connected for six years. Afterward he went to Kansas City in the employ of the same company, under Joe Shepherd. From there he was sent to Peoria, Alton and Kenosha, and for a time ran as a messenger on the Chicago & Alton between Chicago and St. Louis. During this time he was familiarly called “Joe Shepherd’s lap dog.”

Subsequently Mr. Sawtelle became bookkeeper for the firm of Fisher, Arnold & Co., on Water Street, and later was employed by G. Lasher & Sons, and at the Union Stockyards. In 1878 he went to Florida, and for two years engaged in raising oranges near Jacksonville. In June, 1881, he proceeded to Dakota, buying lots, building a shanty (for which he hauled the lumber forty miles), and opening a store in Clark County. He also dealt in lands, having an extensive business. For several years he was Postmaster and American Express Agent there. For a time he also officiated as Justice of the Peace and Notary Public. In local enterprises he was very prominent, and, with others, was active in creamery and elevator companies. He still owns farms in that locality and a large store that he built there.

Going to Bradford County, Pa., in the spring of 1888, Mr. Sawtelle settled in Towanda and engaged in merchandising for eighteen months. He then came to Bethlehem, and bought the bottling works of William Seigfried, which business he has since conducted. His first location was on Long Alley, then in South Bethlehem, and afterward in Bethlehem Heights. In the works are five machines used for bottling, and the trade is continually growing.

The first wife of Mr. Sawtelle, whom he married in Chicago, was Belle Wilson, who was born in Canada and died in Dakota. She left three children: Benjamin B., a gradua’te of the Bethlehem High School and at present a student in the Lehigh University; Marie L. and Seth S. In September, 1888, Mr. Sawtelle married Miss Nan, daughter of Jerome B. Gillette, a native of Canada, and of French descent. Her grandfather, Dr. Gillette, who was born in France, was a graduate of Yale and a skilled physician and surgeon. During the War of 1812 he served in the English army. Late in life he located in Bradford County, Pa., where he followed his profession until death. He was a Protestant in religious faith, as have been many of his descendants.

Mrs. Sawtelle was born in Bradford County, and was one of eight children, there being six daughters and a son, Lamont, an attorney of Allentown. Her mother, whose maiden name was Catherine Kilmer, was born in Schoharie County, N. Y., and is still living on the old homestead. Jerome Gillette was an extensive farmer in Bradford County, and also dealt largely in cattle until shortly before his death, which occurred in 1887. Mrs. Sawtelle was educated in the Rome (Pa.) Academy, and engaged in teaching in that place. Afterward for five years she was similarly engaged in the schools of Allentown. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and was formerly connected with that denomination in Towanda. In politics our subject is affiliated with the Republican party, and socially is a Master Mason and an active member of the Maennerchor.

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the book, Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company. 

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

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