Biography of Henry M. Watson


Watson, Henry M., Buffalo, president of the Buffalo Railway Company, has been prominently identified with the extension and improvement of the Buffalo railway system since 1869. His father was a distinguished educator in the eastern part of this State and afterward served in the Legislature in 1839. Mr. Watson was born in Otsego county, N. Y., and in 1857 went to Albany, where he was engaged in the banking business until 1867. During the last two years of his residence in that city he was general passenger agent of the Albany and Susquehanna Railroad, now a part of the Delaware and Hudson system. In 1868 he removed to Buffalo and was elected secretary and treasurer of the Buffalo Street Railroad Company. In 1871 he was elected secretary and treasurer of the Buffalo East Side Railway Company, and upon the death of Stephen Van Rensselaer Watson, in 1881, he was elected president of the Buffalo Street Railroad Company; both of these roads are now consolidated with the Buffalo Railway Company. In November, 1890, the Buffalo Street Railroad, the Buffalo East Side Railway and the Buffalo West Side Street Railroad were consolidated into the present Buffalo Railway Company and Mr. Watson was elected president, a position of high trust in its management. To his rare executive ability and wisdom in the choice of his subordinates is due the thanks of the community for the excellent service it now enjoys. He spared no expense in securing capable assistants who could be depended upon to carry out his ideas, and the results of his superior management are abundantly manifest. It is universally conceded that no city in the Union has a better street railway system than Buffalo. Mr. Watson is a trustee of the Erie County Savings Bank and of the Union Fire Insurance Company, and vice-president of the Fidelity Loan and Trust Company, and has been president of the Bell Telephone Company in Buffalo since its organization. He is also vice-dean of the Saturn Club of Buffalo, a life member of the Buffalo Library. a member of the Buffalo Historical Society, and a vestryman of Trinity church. He was one of the founders, in 1882, of the American Street Railway Association, which covers the United States and Canada. and was elected president at the convention held in Buffalo in October, 1890. At Saratoga, in the spring of 1885, he was elected president of the Street Railway Association of the State of New York. While a resident of Albany Mr. Watson was one of the founders, in 1861, of Co. A. 10th Regt., N. G. N. Y., and was promoted to the office of second lieutenant in 1868; he is still an honorary member of the company, On January 1, 1880, he received the appointment of aide-de-camp, with rank of colonel, on the staff of Gov. Alonzo B. Cornell.

Our County and its people
A descriptive work on Erie County, New York
Edited by: Truman C. White
The Boston History Company, Publishes 1898


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