Biography of Jeremiah M. Allen
Connecticut Biographies





JEREMIAH M. ALLEN, HARTFORD : President Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company.

Jeremiah M. Allen was born in the town of Enfield, May 18, 1833, and was educated at the Westfield Academy in Massachusetts, preparing him for the profession of a mechanical engineer. After finishing his studies, he devoted himself to teaching for four years, spending what time he was able to win from that pursuit in special lines of research and investigation. In 1865, when only 32 years of age, he became the general agent and adjuster of the Merchants Insurance Company of Hartford. Subsequently he was appointed to a similar position by the Security Fire Insurance Company of New York and engaged in the business with characteristic earnestness and energy. But the insurance field in which Mr. Allen was to become a pioneer and the most successful of managers, had not at that time commanded more than a cursory examination from American underwriters. The work of personal preparation in his case, however, had been continued with the utmost fidelity, and when the time arrived for him to engage in the enterprise that has occupied his maturest thought and energy, he was amply fitted for the task. Mr. Allen was an accomplished scientist when he became the president of the Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company in 1867. This company, which has become one of the prominent insurance organizations in New England, was incorporated June 30, 1866, the cash capital being $100,000. The late Enoch C. Roberts of this city was its first president, and retained the position until the beginning of 1867, when Mr. Allen was elected to. the presidency, and the company commenced the career of prosperity that has won the admiration of underwriters everywhere. When he first entered the field there might have been reasonable doubts concerning the success of the enterprise. It was new and untried in this country. The ablest talent in special lines was needed for the inauguration even of the first business of the company. In President Allen the man needed most of all for originality and leadership was found, and the work of his life has been one of gratifying success. The history of the great organization of which he is the president is the history of his own business career. Mr. Allen is the president also of the Hartford Board of Trade, an organization that has exercised important influence in business and manufacturing centers in the capital city. He is a member of the board of trustees of the Society for Savings, director in the Security Company, the Connecticut River Banking Company, and the Orient Insurance Company, and one of the trustees of the Hartford Theological Seminary. He is also associate executor and trustee of the large estates left by Messrs. John S. Welles and Newton Case, the two estates aggregating upwards of $1,500,000. These facts indicate more successfully than columns of writing would the position which President Allen holds in a community in which fiduciary trusts are bestowed only upon men of the highest personal integrity and honor. To be thus honored in the city of Hartford is the proudest attainment to be reached in a business life. President Allen was one of the organizers of the Asylum Hill Congregational Church, and is a member of the Connecticut Congregational Club. In personal thought, aim, and life he is one of the most admirable exponents of New England Congregationalism. His scientific attainments have been already indicated in this sketch. The concrete proofs of his scientific knowledge will appear from the fact that he has been for a number of years one of the non resident lecturers at Sibley College, Cornell University, member of the American Association of Mechanical Engineers, and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is also a member of the American Historical Association at Washington, D. C., the American Academy of Political and Social Science at Philadelphia, and a life member of the Connecticut Historical Society at Hartford. In politics President Allen is a Republican. He has been a member of the court of common council in Hartford, and of the board of water commissioners. For ten years he was actively identified with the management of the American Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb in this city, and is a gentleman of the broadest public spirit. The wife of President Allen was Miss Griswold, daughter of• Hermon C. Griswold of Ellington, and the family includes two children.

From:
Illustrated Popular Biography
Of Connecticut
Compiled and Published by J. A. Spalding
Press of the Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co.
Hartford, Conn. 1891


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