Biography of Joseph A. Bowen
Bristol County, MA Biographies

Bowen, Joseph A., son of Abraham and Sarah Ann Bowen, was born in Fall River, October 10, 1832. He is a member of one of the oldest of New England families, and many of his direct ancestors served in the Indian wars and in the Revolution. His maternal grandfather was Major Joseph E. Read, one of the prominent citizens of fifty years ago, and his paternal grandfather was Abraham Bowen, the agent of the first cotton mill that was built in Fall River in 1813. This gentleman's farmhouse was situated at the corner of Bedford and North Main streets, while his farm extended from Bedford to Elm street and from the bay to Watuppa Pond. Joseph A. Bowen's father was extensively engaged in the wholesale shipping and commission business (Read & Bowen), and later engaged in the publishing business. As a young man Mr. Bowen followed the printing trade in his father's office. He was a member of the Common Council in 1862-63, and of the Board of Aldermen in 1869-70. At this time he was chairman of the committee on water supply with power to investigate the general subject. The subject was considered with wise care and consideration, and after visiting several cities the committee reported to the council in favor of taking the water from Watuppa Pond. This report was adopted by the city government and upon being submitted to the city at a special election met almost unanimous approval. Mr. Bowen and H. B. Durfee purchased the waterworks lot of fifty acres on their own responsibility, in order to keep it out of the hands of speculators. Their transaction saved the city about $400 per acre. Mr. Bowen was one of the first water commissioners, and was third president of the Fall River Board of Trade, of which he has been a member many years. He is an ardent supporter of all that is designed to further the common good, and a business man of genuine ability. January 19, 1865, he married Miss Fanny M. Corey of Fall River. Their children are Joseph H. and Fanny C. Bowen.

Our county and its people
A descriptive and biographical history of
Bristol County, Massachusetts
Prepaired and published under the auspices of
The Fall River News and The Taunton Gasette
With assistance of Hon. Alanson Borden
The Boston History Company, Publishers, 1899.

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