James Andrew Outterson

Male 1858 - 1922  (63 years)

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  • Name James Andrew Outterson 
    Born 18 Oct 1858  Binghampton, New York Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 6 May 1922 
    Age 63 years 
    Patriarch & Matriarch
    John Outterson,   b. 1738,   d. 1803  (Age 65 years)  (3 x Great Grandfather) 
    Sabra Miner,   b. 3 Oct 1776, Hartland, Hartford, Connecticut, United States Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 3 Aug 1837, Richland Township, Oswego, New York Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 60 years)  (Great Grandmother) 
    Person ID I71313  tree2019
    Last Modified 19 May 2020 

    Father Ancestors James Thomas Outterson,   b. 6 Nov 1836, Windsor, Hartford, Connecticut, United States Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 23 Mar 1907, St Petersburg, Pinellas, Florida, United States Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 70 years)
    Other Partners: Endora T. Petton  m. 1896  
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Ancestors Frances Elizabeth Jones,   b. 1838,   d. 7 Feb 1878  (Age 40 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Married 1856  Pulaski, NY Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Family ID F18572  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Eva Peck 
    Married: 1x1. Geraldine Eva Outterson,   b. 1894  [natural]
    Married: 1x2. James Anderson Neil Outterson, Jr.,   b. 1891, Dexter, Jefferson County, New York Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 Oct 1913  (Age 22 years)  [natural]
     3. Donald C. Outterson  [natural]
    Last Modified 19 May 2020 
    Family ID F30978  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • JAMES ANDREW OUTTERSON, one of the largest manufac¬turers of paper in northern New York, the leading paper-producing sec¬tion of the United States, is also identified as a promoter and stockholder in many other industries employing the artisan and mechanic. Mr. Outterson is a native of Binghamton, New York, born October 18, 1858. His grandfather, Andrew Outterson, was a native of Scotland, and is mentioned more at length in another place in this work. Colonel James T. Outterson, father of the subject of this sketch, is a well-known paper manufacturer, and receives proper notice in this work.
      James A. Outterson grew up at Pulaski, Oswego county, which is the native place of his mother, Frances Elizabeth Jones. He was somewhat wayward as a boy, and could not be kept steadily at his books. As a consequence he was put to work in a paper mill at Rainbow, Con-necticut, at the early age of ten years. His father was superintendent of the mill there at that time. From this time on his attention has been pretty steadily given to the art of producing paper of all grades, and he became proficient in every department of the work, having been con¬nected with several mills in time. In the summer of 1884 he set out in business on his own account by renting a paper mill at Fayetteville, near Syracuse, where he met a discouraging misfortune at the end of six months’ time, the mill being destroyed by fire, together with much stock and tools and materials which he had accumulated- In June, 1885, Mr. Outterson became associated with two others in the operation of a paper mill. Since that time he has been active in extending the operations of the paper industry in Jefferson county, with the exception of three years spent at Potsdam, St. Lawrence county, during which time he organized the Racquette River Paper Company, and constructed and set in opera¬tion its extensive plant. He is now president of the Champion and West End Paper Companies, of Carthage, the Carthage Sulphite Pulp Com¬pany and the Carthage Machine Company, of the same place; of the De Grasse Paper Company and Malone Paper Company; and is manager of the Dexter Sulphite Company of Dexter, and the Orr Pulp and Paper Company of Troy, New York. He gives much of his time to the last named, one of the most extensive plants of its kind anywhere. All these institutions are in successful operation, and much of their prosperity is due to the untiring energy, executive ability and industry of James A. Outterson. The Carthage Machine Company is a most valuable adjunct of his other interests, being employed in the production of paper-making machinery and tools.
      Of social and genial nature, Mr. Outterson counts his friends by the number of his acquaintances, and in the midst of his multitudinous interests and duties finds time to cultivate social, interests. With no ostentation he goes quietly about his work, and the humblest employe may approach him with assurance of a courteous hearing and just treat¬ment in all things. He is frequently called upon to^ address labor assem¬blies, and enjoys the respect and confidence of all with whom he may be in any way associated. He has attained high degree in the Masonic fraternity, being a member of Carthage Lodge and Chapter; Watertown Commandery, Knights Templar; Media Temple, Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, of Watertown, Norwood Lodge of Perfection, and Central City Consistory, of Syracuse. He is also a member in good standing of Car¬thage Lodge and Oriental Encampment, of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of Carthage, and the local camp of the Improved Order of Red Men. He is a past master of Carthage Masonic Lodge. He attends and supports Grace Episcopal church of Carthage, and has always been known as a steadfast and consistent adherent of Republican principles. He has served as president of the village of Carthage three years, and as supervisor of the town of Wilna one term. He was representative of the Carthage district in the state assemblies of 1902 and 1903. Always alert and guided by sound judgment, he is ever prompt in action, and gave the same attention to the public interests while in official position which has characterized his private business career.
      Mr. Outterson was married, October 28, 1886, to Miss Eva S. Peck, who was born at Ticonderoga, New York, a daughter of Horace and Mary E. (Coburn) Peck, of old Crown Point families. Two of the three children of Mr. and Mrs. Outterson are now living-James Neil and Geraldine Eva. Donald C. died at the age of two years and eight months. The elegant home of the family was purchased in 1900, and is the abode of good taste, cheerful hospitality and the kindliest courtesy. It stands on the principal street of Carthage, in the midst of spacious grounds, seeming to smile a welcome to all.

      On October 18, 1858, in the city of Binghamton, N. Y., James Andrew Outterson was born. His father was a paper mill superintendent. His grandfather had been a paper manufacturer in Scotland and Ireland before coming to America. The genius for paper making seemed to have been born in the blood of the young lad.
      While he was yet of slight age his parents, his father being Col. James T. Outterson, moved to Pulaski where there was then a large paper mill. The boy would not be kept at his books; he wanted something more active and exciting than the routine of the school room. At the age of ten years, therefore, he was put to work in a paper mill and the paper mill has been his fort from that day to this.
      That young lad, put to work at 10, was eventually to come to northern New York and become the peer of all other paper manufacturers in the organizing of companies and the building of paper mills. For, Mr. Outterson, now the president of the carthage Sulphite Pulp & Paper Company and the DeGrasse Paper Company, has in the 35 years that he has been in business for himself built no less than 14 mills, the majority of them located in the North Country.
      The present Harmon Paper Company, the Dexter Sulphite Pulp & Paper Company, the Racquette River Paper Company, the Carthage Sulphite Pulp & Paper Company, the Newton Falls Paper Company and more than half a dozen other mills are monuments to his untiring energy and great genius for organizing paper mills.
      Mr. Qutterson's father and his brother, C. E. Outterson, were also intimately connected with paper mill history of northern New York. Consequently no history of the paper industry of the North Country would be complete without going briefly into the Outterson family history.
      The connection of the Outterson family with the paper making industry dates back to many years before 1800. Andrew Outterson, great grandfather of James A. Outterson, was the only son of a miller who lived in the north of Scotland. He was a very versatile man and spoke seven languages sufficiently well for business purposes. He was an expert at paper making. He spent five years in this country after his son had emigrated, and he was among the first to make colored paper in this country. His descendants still preserve, with natural pride, a letter written by him on a composite sheet of paper showing 14 colors he had made. He went from here to Germany to instruct paper makers there in the coloring of paper.
      Andrew Outterson had a son who was also named Andrew. He was born November 14, 1805, near Edinburgh, and at an early age he began paper making. He was employed in a paper mill in Ireland, where he wooed and wed Elizabeth Josephine Carroll, the daughter of Joseph Carroll, who was a foreman in a paper mill for 20 years.
      At the age of 34 he came to America with his wife, and became superintendent of the Hudson paper mills at Manchester, Conn. Later he became superintendent of a paper mill at Poquonock, in the town of Windsor, Stanford County, Conn. While he was living there James T. Outterson was born. Subsequently Andrew Outterson became the owner of paper mills at Dansville and Pulaski, the Pulaski mill being washed away in a flood some years later. Seventeen years later he became superintendent of the Hitchcock paper mills near Westchester, Pa. After a few years there he retired to Watertown, where he spent his later years. He died in Lyonsdale, Lewis County, in 1887, in his 83rd year.
      Following in his father's footsteps, and setting an example which his son was later to follow, James T. Outterson began at the age of ten years to assist in the operations of paper making. He became a journeyman in mills in Pulaski, Little Falls and Binghamton, and subsequently superintendent of the Rainbow mills on the Farmington River, above Windsor, Conn. After three years there he went to Palmer's Falls on the Hudson as superintendent of the Hudson River Paper Company's plant. He remained there about five years.
      With others Mr. Outterson invented a new process of making paper from pulpwood and built mills at Warrensburg for its operation. They also built shops at Candy Hill, Washington County, for turning out the machinery required in the process.
      He came to Brownville with his sons in 1886 and with them was instrumental in building pulp and paper mills there and at Dexter. He was treasurer of the Dexter Sulphite Pulp & Paper Company for many years. He resided in Watertown for a long time before his death. Col. Outterson had served in the Civil war as a captain in the 184th Infantry. His company was the first in the Confederate capital after its evacuation.
      It was in the Rainbow mills that James A. Outterson fiu st got his paper mill experience. When he became a few years older he drifted rapidly from one paper mill to another, becoming proficient in every department.
      "I believe I have worked in more than 50 mills in my life," said Mr. Outterson. "I always used to make it a rule never to stay longer than a few weeks in a mill."
      Mr. Outterson first went into business for himself in 1884, when he rented a small mill at Fayetteville. He had only been running it about six months when it burned, the building, stock and all equipment going up in smoke. Undaunted, he came to Brownville, first leasing a mill and later building the plant which is now the Harmon Paper Company.
      In company with Henry Temple, a young man who had been associated with him at Fayetteville, Mr. Outterson leased the straw mill owned by A. E. Lord at Brownville and proceeded to turn out wrapping paper made out of straw, rags and old paper. The two young men went at the operation of the paper mill with all the enthusiasm of youth and for a few months they made a success of it. Then they sought wider fields.
      When the opportunity was offered in 1885 to buy an old grist mill and site at Brownville for $700 Mr. Outterson eagerly grasped it and he immediately began to convert the grist mill into a pulp mill. About this time, his father, Col. Outterson, and his brother, C. E. Outterson, came to Brownville and they joined him in the operation of the pulp and paper mill.
      An abandoned machine shop stood near the site of the grist mill. There was valuable water power with it, but without a business to utilize it the power had little practical value. Finally the property was offered at auction, and James Outterson, always quick to see the possibilities of such a situation, bought it for a song.
      Aided by his father and brother, he immediately set about the construction of the Outterson Paper Company mill. Within a year a 62 inch Fourdrinier had been installed and paper was being turned out. The profits from the first year's business more than paid the cost of the mill. Within a year or two a second machine was installed. That mill, built in 1885, is today the plant of the Harmon Paper Company, of which John J. Warren is president. The mill has been rebuilt but the equipment is much the same as that installed in the original mill.
      Mr. Outterson lays claim to the fact that his mill was the first to make paper entirely from wood.
      "The Outterson paper mill was the first in this part of the country, if not in the entire United States, to make paper entirely from wood pulp," is his assertion. "Others had succeeded in making paper in which wood pulp was the principal ingredient, but at least 25 percent of rags had to be used. In the Outterson mill we made paper entirely from wood pulp and sulphite.
      "The first load of sulphite pulp that ever came into Jefferson county came to the Outerson mill. It was shipped from Alpena, Mich., and cost about $too a ton delivered. Donald M. Dickenson of Alpena had the patent rights in the United States for the Mitscherlich process, and it was from him that we bought the sulphite pulp.
      "Later, when the Dexter Sulphite Pulp & Paper Company was organized it was the Mitscherlich process that was used, and today the Dexter mill is making sulphite by that method."
      There were two other paper mills in Brownville at this time. One was the Globe Paper and Fibre Company, on the south side of the river, and the other was the plant of the Brownville Paper Company, directly across the river. T. T. Waller of Watertown, later with the International Paper Company and now with H. G. Craig & Co., was president of the Globe Company, and E. A. Flanagan was secretary. Charles B. Remington of Watertown was then president of the Brownville Paper Company, and J. Munson Gamble was secretary and treasurer. A few years later S. A. Upham, now the president and controlling factor in the company, became treasurer of the concern.
      Mr. Remington and Mr. Gamble organized the Brownville Paper Company in 1893. They leased and later purchased the plant of the Siouski Paper Company, which had been owned for many years by the late W. N. Cornell of Watertown, and started on the manufacture of fine paper and specialties. The site of the mill was used in the early days of Brownville by a cotton mill, which had its origin in a company formed February 9, 1814, with a capital of $100,000. A substantial four story stone structure was erected, but from the outset the venture was not successful. For many years it remained idle, when in 1836 the .cotton mill was revived and conducted by many owners with indifferent success. At one time the industry employed nearly too in manufacturing cotton sheeting. Eventually the buildings were utilized by the Brownville Box and Paper Company. The buildings later burned, and the company rebuilt on the old foundation. The plant afterwards became the property of the Siouski Paper Company, and was taken over by the Brownville Paper Company, with the original plant of the Siouski Company.
      Both Mr. Gamble and Mr. Upham have been prominent in the paper making industry in Brownville for about 25 years.
      The paper making career of J. Munson Gamble began in 1891, when he entered the office of C. R. Remington & Son in Watertown, tc, learn the business. He had only been with the company about two years when he and Charles H. Remington became partners in the Brownville Paper Company, the firm being incorporated March 6, 1893. Subsequently Mr. Upham purchased Mr. Remington's interest in the business and in 1897 Charles W. Gamble became a partner.
      In 1897 the company purchased the plant of the Globe & Fibre company on the south side of the river and operated it successfully in connection with the other plant. The two mills were linked by a bridge.
      The fibre plant burned in December, is too. In the spring of 1901 the Gambles sold their interest in the Brownville Paper Company and organized the Brownville Board Company. They erected a concrete mill on the former site of the fibre plant. The mill is one of the most modern in the Black River Valley.
      Mr. Upham, who purchased Mr. Remington's interests and also the Gambles' interest in the Brownville Paper Company, continues to operate that mill. It has been enlarged and extended and is one of the well known, mills working on specialties. Mr. Upham began his business career as a bookkeeper in the Binninger & Strainge shingle mill at Dexter. When the St. Lawrence Paper Company was organized and built on the site of the shingle mill he remained there for a time. Later he became connected with the firm of C. R. Remington & Son, being assistant to Charles H. Remington at Glen Park until he acquired an interest in the Brownville Paper Company.


  • Sources 
    1. [S2334] The Outterson Family Book, 1795 - 1995 by Dr. John Outterson, addendum 2006 by Mary F. Otterson, p 44.