Hon. Gail S. Hamilton, mayor of Coshocton, is giving to the city a public-spirited and businesslike administration,
his support of many progrcssive measures gaining for him the endorsement of the large majority of his fellow townsmen.
A native son of Ohio, he was born in Wellington, Lorain county, August 3. 1868, his parents being Gaylord B. and
Flora (Selkirk) Hamilton. In the paternal line he is descended from Alexander Hamilton and on the maternal side
from Daniel Boone. his father was born in Medina county, Ohio, in 1824 and was a son of Lindsey Hamilton, who walked
the entire distance from New York to Ohio and settled four miles north of the village of Medina. He was accompanied
on the trip by a brother and two cousins and they settled at the four corners of the road, which district still
bears the name of Hamilton's Corners. Gail S. Hamilton is today the only descendant of these four kinsmen bearing
the name in Ohio. They were prominent factors in the early development of this part of the state.
Gaylord B. Hamilton was made postmaster of Medina., Ohio, when twenty-one, years of age and after retiring from
that office he entered the railway mail service, with which ho was identified for many years. While thus engaged
he became the inventor and patentee of the mail catcher, which is now universally used by all railroads for catching
the mail bag at way stations while the train is in motion. Previous to this time it had been the custom to catch
the bag with the arm and a broken shoulder frequently resulted. The need suggested the invention to Mr. Hamilton,
who at length perfected it. Prominent in political circles, he was for years a member of the state central committee,
of Ohio but was never an aspirant for public office. He was an intimate friend of James A. Garfield and other distinguished
republicans of the state and his labors were untiring in behalf of their success. Fraternally he was connected
with the Masons and he was widely recognized as one of the influential and honored residents of his section up
to the time of his death, which occurred in 1889, when he was sixty-five years of age.
Gail S. Hamilton was reared to farm life, for when he was five years of age his parents removed to the farm belonging
to his grandfather, who had been paralyzed and needed the assistance of his son upon the old homestead. It was
thus that Gail S. Hamilton spent his early youth amid rural surround ings, acquiring his preliminary education
in the district schools. He was twelve years of age when the family removed to Medina and there he attended the
graded and high schools. When seventeen years of age he entered upon his business career, securing a situation
in the flour and feed store owned by the O. C. Shepherd Milling Company. Two years later he resigned in order to
accept a position in a laundry and was identified with that line of business for eight years. In 1895 he came to
Coshocton, Ohio, and accepted a position as clerk in the Empire Hotel, where he remained for three years. He was
later connected with a laundry in Toledo for two years, but in 1900 returned to Coshocton, where he again acted
as clerk in the Empire Hotel for a year.
It was during that period that Mr. Hamilton was married to Miss Lena Atkinson, of Delta, Ohio, and immediately
following his marriage he purchased a restaurant on Hickory street, conducting it for three years. On selling out
in 1904 he took a nine months' trip to California for the benefit of his wife's health, and on his return in the
spring of 1905 he purchased the Star restaurant, which he conducted in connection with the Star Hotel for eighteen
months, after which he sold out and engaged in the theatrical business, establishing the first electric theater
opened in Coshoeton. This has proven a financial success and is the popular theater of the city.
Mr. Hamilton is perhaps even better known in political circles and is an ardent republican, who has labored earnestly
for the welfare and success of his party. In 1904 he announced his candidacy for the office of mayor but was defeated
in the nominating convention. In 1906 he withdrew in favor of a friend but in 1908 again sought the nomination
and at the ensuing election was chosen for the office by a handsome majority, He is proving a capable chief executive,
who administers the affairs of the city along econoniical yet progressive business lines and has secured the passage
of a number of important measures relative, to the city's welfare.
Mr. Hamilton belongs to Coshocton Lodge, No. 96, A. F. & A. M., Samaritan Chapter, No. 50, R. A. M.; Coshocton
Commandery, No. 63, K. T.; Fidelity Lodge, No. 135, K. P.; Coshocton Lodge, No. 76, B. P. O. E.; and the Fraternal
Order of Eagles, No. 761. He also attends and supports the Presbyterian church, of which his wife is a member.
Mr. Hamilton is a popular man, of friendly and cordial spirit and his good nature and many sterling traits of charactor
have gained him the friendship and regard of many, while his recognized business ability constituted an element
in his election to the office which he is now ably filling.
Centennial History of
Coshocton County, Ohio
By William J. Bahmer
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Coshocton County, Ohio Biographies
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