ISAAC W. MITCHELL is one of the best known business men of Washington, and partner in probably the oldest grocery house in the place. He is descended from a Scotch-Irish family, who in an early day emigrated from the North of Ireland to this country, making a settlement on Short creek, in West Virginia. Alexander Mitchell, paternal grandfather of Isaac W., by occupation a farmer, was a native of West Virginia, where were born to him five children, all deceased.
Zachariah Mitchell, father of subject, grew to manhood at the place of his birth, and was reared to agricultural pursuits, which he followed until 1853. In 1844 he married Miss Ann, daughter of George and Jane (Wilson) Baird, of Washington, Penn. This Baird family were of Scotch ancestry, the first to come to America having been John Baird, who was born in Scotland about the year 1730, and crossed the Atlantic with Gen. Braddock in 1755. His only son, Dr. Absalom Baird, was the first of the family to come to Washington, which was in 1786; he served in the Revolutionary war, first as ensign and afterward as assistant surgeon. He was the one who trepanned Gen. Anthony Wayne's skull, which had been struck by a musket ball at the storming of Stony Point, N. Y., on the night of July 15, 1779. After coming to Washington, Dr. Baird built a house which, but little changed, still stands, and during the visit of the French king, Louis Phillippe, to the United States at the close of the last century, the royal exile was entertained for some time in this house. Dr. Baird died October 27, 1805, the result of a fall from a horse. One of his sons, George, became the grandfather of our subject. He was born in Kennett Square, Penn., in 1785, was educated at Washington Academy and for a time was a tutor. Afterward he embarked in mercantile pursuits in Washington, in which he continued until his death, November 1, 1860, the present business of his son, A. Todd Baird, having been established by him. At the age of twenty-six (1811) he became sheriff of Washington county; was also a member of the Legislature, filling an unexpired term. He was married October 25, 1811, to Jane Wilson, who bore him fourteen children -- seven sons and seven daughters. In 1852 Mr. and Mrs. Zachariah Mitchell removed to Missouri, where the latter died August 28, 1853, the mother of five children, viz.: George B. (deceased); Alexander, treasurer of the Mutual Savings Bank of Wheeling, W. Va.; and Martha B., Isaac W., and James K., cashier of the Dime Savings Institution of Washington, all residents of Washington. After the mother's death the father went to Texas, and there made his home until 1865, in which year he returned to Missouri, where he died March 20, 1882.
Isaac W. Mitchell was born in Wheeling, W. Va., February 19, 1851, and was but two years of age when brought to Washington, where, at the common schools of the borough, and at Washington and Jefferson College, he received his education. He chose bookkeeping as his life work, which vocation he followed two years in Iowa and three years in Chicago, Ill., but on account of failing health he returned to Washington in 1874. In 1885 he engaged with his uncle, Mr. A. Todd Baird, in the grocery business which he has since successfully conducted. On November 1, 1882, Mr. Mitchell was married to Miss Sarah R. Hill, of Blairsville, Indiana Co., Penn., daughter of Rev. George Hill, D. D., pastor of the Presbyterian Church, and president of the board of trustees of the Western Theological seminary at Allegheny, Penn. To this union four children have been born: Eleanor Baird, Georgia Hill, Harriet Todd and Marthine B., of whom two, Georgia and Harriet Todd, are deceased. Our subject is a busy man and has filled and is filling various offices of trust, among which may be mentioned: borough councilman; treasurer of Washington and Jefferson College; treasurer of the Y. M. C. A.; treasurer and director of the Washington Glass Company; director of the Gas, Electric Light & Power and Tyler Tube & Pipe Companies, and of the Farmers & Mechanics National Bank. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church of Washington, and in 1891 was sent to Minneapolis as a delegate from the Young People's Society of Christian Endeavor.
Text taken from page 191 of:
Beers, J. H. and Co., Commemorative Biographical Record of Washington County, Pennsylvania (Chicago: J. H. Beers & Co., 1893).
Transcribed January 1997 by Karen Souhrada of Pittsford, NY as part of the Beers Project.
Published January 1997 on the Washington County, PA USGenWeb pages at http://www.chartiers.com/.
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