Biography of William Michel
Franklin County, Ohio Biographies





William Michel. - A substantial citizen of Columbus is found in William Michel, who is identified with the Hocking Valley Railroad as chief engineer. He is a native of this city, born March 18, 1866, the son of Col. Frederick and Catherine (Glass) Michel.

Col. Frederick Michel was a native of Alsace-Lorraine and his wife was born in Berlin, Germany. Their marriage took place in the United States, their respective families having come here at an early date and settled in Pennsylvania. Later the Michels came to Ohio and finally went to Iowa. The family was among the earliest families to settle in Columbus, where they became influential and well known citizens. It was Colonel Michel who donated a tract of fifteen acres to Capitol University in Columbus. This land was part of his original farm. He also was the organizer of a church in Bexley and was the owner and proprietor of the Park Hotel. Colonel Michel also had silver mining interests in Colorado, but maintained his residence in Columbus. He retired from business in 1916 and died in 1923. His wife died in 1889. Both are buried in Greenlawn Cemetery, Columbus Colonel Michel was a Republican and took an active part in the political campaign of President Hayes. He was offered a foreign post during that administration but declined to accept it. He was colonel of the Hayes Escorts. He was also one of the original organizers and trustees of Greenlawn Cemetery Association. He held membership in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. To Col. Frederick and Catherine (Glass) Michel were born four children: Frederick J., deceased; Charles W., deceased; Clara, lives at Columbus, Ohio; and William, the subject of this sketch.

William Michel obtained his education in the public schools of Columbus and is a graduate of Ohio University. He has been identified with the interests of the Hocking Valley Railroad Company continuously since 1884, when he entered the company's employ as a rodman. His next position was as road leveler during 1885-86; as transitman and assistant engineer during 1886-87; assistant engineer during 1887-89; as assistant chief engineer during 1889-92; as engineer maintenance of way during 1892-1910; and on November 8, 1910, he was appointed chief engineer.

In 1893 Mr. Michel was united in marriage with Miss Virginia M. Prichard, the daughter of Thomas F. and Helen (Ramage) Prichard, of Virginia, both now deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Michel are the parents of the following children: Helen, married Rev. R. B. Hindman, lives at Danville, Illinois; Virginia, married John Scatterday, lives at Columbus; Phoebe, married Allen S. Rinker, lives at Columbus, and they have a daughter, Joan; and Thomas F., who attends Ohio University.

Mr. Michel is a Republican, a member of the Northminster Presbyterian Church, and is affiliated with Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Goodell Lodge No. 372; Columbus Council, R. & S. It No. 8; Mt. Vernon Commandery, K. T. No. 1; Scioto Consistory, Thirty degree; Aladdin Temple; Achbar Grotto, M. O. V. P. E. R.; and Athletic Club of Columbus. He is also identified with the American Society of Civil Engineers.

From:
History of Franklin County, Ohio
By:Opha Moore
Historical Publishing Company
Topeka - Indianapolis 1930


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