Bio: McGee, William (Commemorative Bio - 1895)

Poster: Crystal Wendt

William McGee

William McGee, now serving as city engineer of Tomahawk, Lincoln County, is one of the prominent and representative citizens. On June 22, 1861, he was born in New York City, while his mother was there on a visit, her home being in the central part of Tennessee. The paternal grandfather, David McGee, was born in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, in 1806, but removed to Tennessee, where he and his wife both died. He was a farmer and mason by occupation. In his family were five children Wiley, William, James, Lizzie, and one who died in childhood.

The father of our subject, Wiley McGee, was born in 1825 in Franklin, Tenn., where he learned the trade of harness making in his youth. He was soon established as a manufacturer of saddler, and now has two factories in Tennessee, employing a number of men. He was joined in wedlock with Emily Journey, a native of the same State, and to that union were born six children James, John, William, Elizabeth, and two who died in infancy. Her parents, William and Hannah Journey, were large landowners, and had a family of eight children, of whom are mentioned Feilan, John, Henry, Emily, Candice, Mary and Paulina. Mrs. McGee passed to her final rest in 1885.

On leaving home William McGee went to Minneapolis, Minn., where he employed in a machine shop. He has always fond of Machinery, being very much at home around an engine, and during his stay in Minnesota was chief engineer on different plants. He remained in that State until coming to Tomahawk in 1890; later he removed to Merrill, Wis., where he served as chief engineer for the Wisconsin Valley Lumber Co., remaining with them one season. For one year he then filled another position as chief engineer, after which he returned to Tomahawk to look after the city water plant, and has since filled his present position that of city engineer. He given general satisfaction, as he thoroughly understands the work he has in charge.

On February 4, 1890, Mr. McGee married Miss Lizzie Lahay, and to them have been born two children Ada E., and William L. Mrs. McGee is a native of Canada, in which country her parents, Alexander and Julia (Defosses) Lahay, were also born, the father in 1819, and the mother in 1825. They had a family of eleven children Alexander, Julia, Frank, Mary, Emma, Clara, Emily, George, Rosa, Elizabeth, and one that died in childhood. While a resident of Canada the father was foreman of a lumber company, working in the woods during the winter season and in the summer he was on the river. In April, 1873, he located with his family in Lewiston, Maine, where his death occurred June 7, 1874, the result of an injury received in a brick yard. In 1882 the mother joined her children in Wisconsin, where she is still living. She is of French descent, her parents, Louis and Julia Defosses, having both been born in France, where their marriage was celebrated, and to them where born ten children Jule, Thomas, Julia, Louie, Lucia, Mary, Frank, Leo, and two who died in childhood. The father followed agricultural pursuits.

Socially, McGee is identified with the Masonic Fraternity, holding membership with the lodge in Tomahawk No. 242, F. & A. M.; Tomahawk Lodge No. 155, I. O. O. F., and with the Order of American Mechanics.

---Source: Commemorative Biographical Record of the Upper Wisconsin Counties of Waupaca, Portage, Wood, Marathon, Lincoln, Oneida, Vilas, Langlade and Shawano. publ. 1895 by J. H. Beers & Co., Chicago 1110 pages, illustrated; Page 945-946


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