The Linwood R.R. Station about 110 years ago
Joseph H. Huddell, deputy United States Marshal for the eastern district of Pennsylvania, was found dead in bed at his home in Linwood this morning. The news of his demise was received in this city with a distinct shock of regret and sorrow. He was one of the best known and most beloved citizens of the county. It is no exaggeration to say that he was known personally and was well liked by a majority of the residents of this county, while his circle of friends and acquaintances was not confined within the borders of Pennsylvania but extended to every part of the United States.
Mr. Huddell, or Captain Huddell, as he was more familiarly known, was enjoying robust health and attended to his duties in connection with the Marshal’s office up until last evening. He was in Chester yesterday and about the streets of Philadelphia, where he greeted friends as usual and seemed in particularly good spirits. The suddenness of his death is therefore the more keenly shocking.
Except for a slight cold, which apparently developed yesterday, there was no previous complaint from Mr. Huddell. Last night, on reaching his home, he remarked to his daughters that he did not feel well and that there was a Pain in his side. It was thought to be superficial and no attention was paid it. This morning, however, when his daughter, Miss Jennie Huddell, went to his room to awaken him, there was no response. Further investigation disclosed the fact that the Captain had passed away some time before.
A LOVABLE SPIRIT – CAPTAIN Joseph H. Huddell was a man of genial spirit and had a most sympathetic heart. He was particularly a friend of the newspaper men and in many of the banquets of the Chester Press Club, of which he was a member, he was a hail fellow well met. Nothing was too arduous or him to do to assist his friends of the craft and they will always remember his kindly deeds in their behalf.
In politics, he was an ardent Republican and probably no man kept a closer tab on the doings of the party in Delaware County. He has been honored time and again with an election to the County Republican Executive Committee, has been a State delegate and has served in other capacities of trust and honor. He was the closest of friends of the late Judge Thomas J. Clayton and managed several of his campaigns. He also was a particular friend of former Congressman John B. Robinson now United States Marshal, and was active in the conduct of his canvass for the place as representative from the old Sixth district. He was particularly well versed in county politics and always drafted the resolutions in conventions when the time was opportune for the advocacy of anything that tended to advance the interests of the party.
When John B. Robinson was given the United States Marshalship, Captain Huddell was chosen one of his deputies and has remained in office during the entire time the genial former Congressman has held the place. He was a faithful servant and will be missed by all who knew him.
SKETCH OF HIS LIFE – Joseph H. Huddell was a son of George H. and Rebecca H. (Mildlen) Huddell, and was born in Philadelphia on October 17, 1837. He would therefore have observed his sixty-eighth birthday had he lived until tomorrow. The Huddells were natives of Philadelphia from shortly after William Penn took charge of his New World Possessions on the Delaware, and Andrew Bankson, a member of the General Assembly for 1686, under Penn, was connected with the family by marriage.
Captain Huddell was reared principally in his native city, receiving his education in the public schools and the Protestant Episcopal Academy of that city. Leaving school in the autumn of 1853 he entered the employ of the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad Company as shipping clerk, and in the summer of 1854 became assistant bookkeeper in a large wholesale coal office in Philadelphia, where he remained until 1861.
In April of that year he formed a partnership with Col. Alfred Day, under the name of Day & Huddell, and engaged in mining and shipping coal, their main office being on Walnut Street, Philadelphia. He continued in that business successfully as a member of the firms of Day & Huddell, day, Huddle & Co., Joseph H. Huddell & Co., and Huddle & Seltzinger until 1871. In January, 1892, he was appointed superintendent of construction for the new United States post office building in the city of Chester, which position he held until October, 1893, when he was removed by the Democratic administration. The duties of this office he discharged with ability.
Since 1849 Mr. Huddell has spent his summers in Delaware County, and since 1868 has been a permanent resident of Linwood.
In 1891 he served as secretary to Hon. Boles Penrose, president of the state Senate at Harrisburg, and filled the same position with Hon. John P.S. Gobin, president of the extra session of the Senate in the autumn of 1891. His appointment as superintendent of construction on the United States post office building in Chester was secured through Hon. John B. Robinson.
On November 11, 1858, Mr. Huddell was married to Rebecca W. Ayers, a daughter of Samuel W. Ayers of Philadelphia. She died February 10, 1879, aged forty years, leaving a family of nine children, three sons and six daughters Rebecca A. Alfred D. Joseph H., Jane N., Kate T., Esther M., Sarah A., Draper and Elizabeth B. These children were members of the Episcopal Church of which Mr. Huddell was an attendant. He was a member of Lodge No. 2, A.Y.M., Excelsior Mark Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons, and of Keystone Chapter, No. 176, Royal Arch Masons of Philadelphia.