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FLETCHER, Joseph A., Steelton, was born in Manchester, England, December 14, 1835. His father, William Fletcher, of Manchester, married Maria Whitaker, by whom he had five children : Sabina ; Edward ; Elizabeth, deceased ; William, who came to this country in 1867, and now resides in Middletown, Pa., and Joseph A. Mr. Fletcher died in 1872 and his wife in 1873.

Joseph A. received his education in the schools of England. Having learned the moulder’s trade when a young man, he followed this occupation for seven years. In march, 1854, he came to this country, sailing on the sailing vessel Henry Clay. He located at Cold Springs, N. Y. Here he found employment at his trade and was busily engaged for three years. In 1857 the home feeling prevailed and he turned his face toward his English home and friends. Two years were sufficient to enable him to realize that this country offered him more opportunities for rising in the world than he could find in his own country. In March, 1859, he returned to the United States, and again found a place to work at Cold Springs for one year. He was now complete master of the trade of moulder and iron worker. After leaving Cold Springs he was employed in steel mills in several different States. He finally, in 1867, settled in Steelton, which has since that date been his permanent place of residence. He engaged with the Pennsylania Steel Company, first as overseer of the Bessemer melting department ; for the next five years he had charge of the foundry for the same works. In 1874 he resigned his place with the Steel Company and went to Philadelphia, Pa., where he conducted a dry goods business until 1876. At this time he returned to Steelton and engaged in the hotel business. He demonstrated his ability in this line by keeping a good house and making this business profitable. In 1880 he built the large hotel known as the Fletcher House, which he has since managed. Mr. Fletcher is one of the original stockholders and one of the largest investors in the Steelton Light, Heat and Power Company. He has also been one of its directors since it was organized. He is also a stockholder in the Harrisburg Trust Company, and in the Harrisburg Electric Light Company.

In 1861 he married Miss Margaret Arthur, of Troy, N. Y. They had eight children : Joseph A., Jr., married, and living at Sparrow’s Point, Md., has five children ; Minnie; Bella, deceased ; William Arthur ; infant daughter, deceased ; Alfred ; Bella, deceased ; Charles deceased. His wife, Margaret (Arthur) Fletcher, died in March, 1885. He was married again in August, 1885, to Miss Martha Booser, daughter of Jacob Booser, of Hummelstown, by whom he has three children, Nellie E., Mary L., and Ambrose L. Mr. Fletcher is a member of the Masonic Lodge, No. 486, of Middletown, Pa., and joined Oriental Chapter and Kadosh Commandery, of Philadelphia, in 1875.

Commemorative Biographical Encyclopedia of Dauphin County, Pennsylvania

Transcribed by Leslie Silvernail (lsilvernail@cfl.rr.com) for The Dauphin County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project - http://maley.net/transcription

Date of Transcription: 11 August 2001

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