Biography of Jeremiah B. Rice
Oneida County, NY Biographies





Jeremiah B. Rice, who died in Utica on the 22d of August, 1900, at the age of eighty eight years, was one of the oldest living residents of the city and also one of its most prominent men. His birth occurred in Rhode Island and his father was the proprietor of the Catharine Street House. For some time prior to 1856 our subject was associated with his father in the conduct of that hostelry. In 1856 the clothing firm of Kellogg & Rockwell acquired a bankrupt stock of clothing on a judgment and Mr. Rice was engaged to dispose of it. He purchased the business and located at No. 56 Genesee street, conducting the enterprise in association with his brother under the firm name of J. M. & J. B. Rice. Later removing to No. 68 Genesee street, they there conducted a successful business for a number of years. When J. B. Rice retired the firm name was changed to J. M. Rice & Company. In 1865 the concern sold out to Nettleton, Heath & Company, who in 1873 disposed of their business to Heath Brothers. Later Fred H. Heath became the sole proprietor of the enterprise. In addition to developing and successfully conducting a private business Mr. Rice of this review became president of the Central City Savings Bank, one of the original directors of the Utica & Black River Railroad and a stockholder in the Oneida National Bank and the Globe Woolen Mills. He was likewise a director in the Steam Woolen Mills and the Ontario Branch Bank. After retiring from the clothing business he took charge of the estates of Thomas L. Kingsley and Edward F. Manning. A man of forceful purpose and unfaltering determination, he carried forward to successful completion whatever he undertook.

On the 8th of June, 1859, Mr. Rice was united in marriage to Mrs. Fanny A. Randall, the widow of Robert M. Randall and a daughter of the late Colonel Alvin White, who served as colonel of the One Hundred and Seventeenth Regiment until wounded. He likewise acted as superintendent of Faxon Hospital. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Nancy Greenman, was a daughter. of Captain Greenman, who came to New York from Brookileld, Massachusetts, and had a line of packet boats, on the Erie canal in the early days. Robert M. Randall, the first husband of Mrs. Rice, was born in Greene, New York, and was a grandson of Judge John Randall. Mr. Randall was first engaged in the express business for a number of years and subsequently became teller in the Oneida National Bank, holding that position for many years. His son, Robert M. Randall, Jr., is now engaged in the coal business at Saginaw, Michigan. Mrs. Rice is a native of Utica, New York.

In politics Mr. Rice was a stanch republican, loyally supporting the men and measures of that party. His fraternal relations were with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He was one of the organizers of St. George's church and acted as warden for a number of years. A man of domestic tastes, he greatly enjoyed his home and home relations. His entire life was spent in Utica, where he had an extensive circle of friends who accorded him their unqualified confidence and esteem. His widow, living at No. 5 Court street, is also well and favorably known throughout the city.

From:
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
Chicago 1912


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