Frederick William Luker, now deceased, who was for many years in active business in Utica and gained in an uncommon
degree the confidence and respect of his associates and a large circle of friends, was a native of this city. He
was born November 5, 1866, a son of Peter and Catharine Luker. Of the children of Mr. and Mrs. Luker three are
now living: John M., of Waterville, New York; Owen F., of Utica; and Mrs. John E. Keating, also of this city.
Mr. Luker, whose name introduces this sketch, received his early education at Assumption Academy, Utica. At the
age of twelve years he entered the employ of Bristol & Smith, dealers in wall paper. He began at the foot of
the ladder as errand boy but as years passed he steadily climbed to positions of responsibility and at the age
of twenty five was made a partner in the firm, the title of which was changed to William T. Smith & Company,
Mr. Bristol having retired. For a number of years Mr. Luker traveled through northern New York in the interest
of this firm and as he made friends wherever he appeared he built up a large and lucrative patronage and was known
as one of the most popular traveling salesmen in the state. Possessing a cheerful disposition, a kindly nature
and a gentlemanly address, he was eminently adapted to meet the public and he often succeeded easily in placing
an order where others gained recognition only through much labor. In August, 1905, the firm of William T. Smith
& Company was dissolved and John L. Grant succeeded to the business.
On June 20, 1894, Mr. Luker was united in marriage to Miss Gertrude E. Donohue, of Utica Four children were born
to this union, Thelma, now deceased, Frederick K, Joseph F., and Marjorie. Mr. Luker was reared in the Catholic
church and was a member of St. John's church; the League of the Sacred Heart and the Holy Name Society, both of
which are connected with the church; Imperial Council, No. 70, Royal Arcanum; the relief association connected
with Imperial Council; and the Commercial Travelers. In politics he was an adherent of the democratic party, but
never sought nor held political office. During the last eighteen months of his life he lived retired, his health
having become impaired. After being confined to his bed for a month he died January 27, 1907, having arrived at
the age of forty one years. A man of the highest honor, he was a lover of his home and family and a citizen who
will long be missed in a community where he was recognized as one of its most worthy and respected members. He
was greatly blessed in an intelligent and devoted wife, who proved to him a true helpmeet and companion. She still
makes her home in the family residence at No. 131 Steuben street.
History of Oneida County, New York
From 1700 to the present time
of some of its prominent men and pioneers.
By: Henry J. Cookinham
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
Oneida County, NY
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