JOSEPH A. SHADE
The spirit of enterprise, industry and progress which dominates this section of the country is manifested in the successful career of Mr. Shade, who is now occupying the responsible position of secretary, treasurer and general manager of the Wright & Kuntz Lumber Company, of Piqua. He was born in Dayton, Ohio, June 30, 1855. His paternal grandfather, John Shade, was born and reared in Berks county, Pennsylvania, and about 1816 emigrated to Ohio, securing a tract of timber land near Dayton. In the midst of the forest he developed a farm upon which he remained until his death, which occurred when he was about seventy-four years of age. It is supposed that his father, Henry Shade, was a native of Germany, but it is authentically known that he resided in America in colonial days and served as an officer in the Revolutionary war. His father, Joseph Shade, was also a native of Montgomery county, born September 18, 1818, and was there reared upon a farm. When a young man he engaged in tanning in Dayton, and continued to follow that pursuit until his death, which occurred February 18, 1862. Success attended his enterprises and he became the owner of three tanneries which proved profitable investments, his business steadily increasing, both in volume and importance, until his annual sales amounted to about one hundred thousand dollars, He owned the largest leather house this side of Cincinnati and was very prominent in business circles. He worked his way steadily upward from a humble position and his wealth was the merited reward of his labors. In politics he was a very earnest and active supporter of the Democratic party but never sought or desired official preferment. He held membership in St. John's Lutheran church and died in that faith, at the age of forty-three years. His wife bore the maiden name of Ellen Livensberger. She was born in Berks county, Pennsylvania, but was reared near Dayton, Ohio. Her father, William Livensberger, was a pioneer of the Buckeye state and wedded Mary Spitler, a native of Berks county, Pennsylvania. She was born January 20, 1790, and died February 9, 1872. Mrs. Shade was quite young when brought by her parents to the Buckeye state and here she was reared until her marriage. After the death of her first husband, she became the wife of Charles E. Wright, who was a native of Virginia, and for many years has been a lumber merchant of Greenville, Ohio. She held membership in the Presbyterian church of Greenville and died in that city November 14, 1899, at the age of seventy-two years. Her children were Margaret E., wife of William Taylor, of Indianapolis, Indiana; Mary wife of M. M. Herr, of Geneva, Adams County, Indiana, who served through the war of the Rebellion under command of Generals McClellan and Grant and has since filled the position of postmaster; Henrietta, wife of Warren L. Benham, of Clyde, Ohio; Joseph A., of this review; and Eleanora, wife of F. F. Vater, of Indianapolis, Indiana.
Mr. Shade, whose name introduces this record, pursued his education in the schools of Dayton until fifteen years of age and was afterward graduated in the Miami Commercial College. He was early trained to the habits and labors of the farm and remained on the old homestead with the family until twenty-three years of age, when he removed to Hamilton county, Indiana, there accepting the position of general superintendent of the large stock farm in which he remained for several years, capably and carefully superintending its conduct. On the expiration of that period he took up his abode in Noblesville, Indiana, where he engaged in the grocery business for several years and then went to Springfield, Missouri. He purchased a farm in that locality and managed the property for some time, after which he sold out and returned to Noblesville. However, he soon located in Greenville, Ohio, accepting a position as salesman and book-keeper in the lumber office of P. Kuntz & Wright, and was thus employed until January, 1889, when he came to Piqua to take charge of their lumber yard at this place, as general manager. He capably served in that capacity until April 14, 1896, when the yard was destroyed by fire. The company then re-organized and on the 26th of May, of that year, was incorporated under the name of the Wright & Kuntz Lumber Company, of which Mr. Shade became a stockholder. He was made secretary, treasurer and general manager and in those positions has since served, his capable control of affairs being the most potent element in securing the success which has attended the enterprise.
Mr. Shade was married August 22, 1881, to Miss Kate L. Evans, of Noblesville, Indiana, a daughter of O.H. Evans, a newspaper man of that city, the editor and publisher of the Ledger there at the time of his death. Four children have been born unto them, of whom three are now deceased: Joseph H.; Harry E. who died in infancy; and Harriet E., who died at the age of two years. Ruth M., the third child, is now living at the age of fourteen.
In his political views, Mr. Shade is a stanch Democrat, very earnest in the support of the principles of the party and does all in his power to promote its growth and insure its success. He has never sought or desired office, his time being fully occupied by his business interests. The lumber company with which he is connected carries a stock valued at twenty-five thousand dollars and its annual sales amount to from fifty to seventy-five thousand dollars. The honorable business policy which it has always followed has awakened uniform confidence, and Mr. Shade is known as a very reliable and enterprising business man. In addition to his connection with the lumber firm he is vice-president of the Democratic Printing & Publishing Company, of which he was one of the organizers. He has accumulated a handsome competence by his industry, perseverance, and good management and he richly deserved to succeed. His social qualities and genial manner have gained him many friends and he is a popular citizen of Miami county.
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