Bio of Charles H. Chase
As found in REPRESENTATIVE MEN OF MAINE
A Collection of Biographical Sketches.
Prepaired under the direction of Henry Chase
Portland, ME.
The Lakeside Press, Publisher
1893

HON. CHARLES H. CHASE was born in Brunswick, Me., about sixty-nine years ago, but for many years has been prominently identified with the business interests of Portland, and always deeply interested in the prosperity and public affairs of the city. He followed the sea most of the time for about twenty years, the larger portion in command of fine vessels in the merchant service.

In 1857 he was appointed by Hon. Moses McDonald, then Collector of the Port of Portland, United States boarding officer, and served until the close of the administration of President Buchanan.

In 1861 he decided to again take command of a vessel, but in 1862, on account of ill health, he retired permanently from the sea, and was for several years elected Port-warden by the Board of Trade.

In 1863 he began business as a ship-broker, procuring freights, buying, selling, and building vessels; conducting business under the firm name of Charles H. Chase & Co. In 1876 he sold his ship-brokerage business to Capt. William Leavitt, who has since conducted it under the firm name of Chase, Leavitt & Co. Since that time Mr. Chase has been interested in shipping and in marine insurance. From 1870 to 1884, with the exception of two years, he was President of the old Marine Railway Company, and since 1884 has been President of the new Merchants' Marine Railway Company, of which he was the projector and largest stockholder. This Marine Railway, built that year, is the largest and best this side of Boston. From 1887 to 1892 he also leased the Portland dry docks.

Mr. Chase has always been an active Democrat, and for many years has ranked as one of the leaders of his party in this State, being a member of the Governor's Council in 1879. In 1884 the Democratic State Convention at Bangor, called to choose delegates to the !)emocratic National Convention, resisted a strong pressure brought to bear on it, to pledge the delegates from Maine to General Butler, at that time a presidential candidate, and a strong Cleveland delegation was chosen. Mr. Chase, as a pronounced Cleveland man, was chosen Chairman of the delegation, and cast the vote of his State for Grover Cleveland. He was a member of the Democratic State Committee, from r88o to 1886, three terms, and declined a re-election. He has several times refused to allow his name to be used in connection with the nomination for official positions.

In 1885 Mr. Chase was appointed, by President Cleveland, United States Collector of Internal Revenue for the District of Maine, and his administration of the affairs of that office was business-like, and to the advantage of the public service. In 1892 Mr. Chase headed the electoral ticket of his party in this State, receiving without opposition the honor of a nomination for Elector-at-Large.

Mr. Chase has been a success as a business man, as a ship-master, and as a politician. Holding pronounced political views, he has never allowed politics to stand in the way of personal friendship, and has had the confidence and respect of men of all parties.

He has been in the State Government and the Portland City Government; is at present one of the Overseers of the Poor, which position he has previously held. He is a strong friend of the unfortunate poor, and looks closely after the financial management of that department of city affairs. He has also been President of the Portland Marine Society, in which he has always taken an active part, and the Society owes its present good condition, in a great measure, to him.

Captain Chase is an honest, thorough-going, straightforward business man, and he has the confidence of the business community of the city of Portland, in which he has been a somewhat prominent and active member for more than thirty years. No one could ever justly accuse him of a mean or dishonorable act. He is positive in his opinions, open and frank in all his doings, and nobody can complain that it is difficult to tell where Captain Chase stands on any question in which he is interested. He takes his position on matters after mature deliberation, but he has the courage, ever after, to maintain his opinions with tenacity and frankness, and is ready to express them on all proper occasions. His word is as good as his bond. In business and in social life his friendship once gained is not lost as long as one proves worthy of it. He has a wide circle of warm friends and, like most men of positive character, lie is proud that he has some enemies. though it can be truthfully said that they are few.


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