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History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
John Timothy O'Brien

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 100-101 of History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925, edited by Nelson Greene (Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 974.7 G81h. This online edition includes lists of portraits, maps and illustrations. As noted by Paul Keesler in his article, "The Much Maligned Mr. Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

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John Timothy O'Brien, proprietor of the O'Brien Brass Foundry of Utica since 1919, has achieved prosperity in business by dint of unflagging energy, untiring effort and undaunted determination. His record is an excellent illustration of what well directed industry can accomplish in the attainment of success. He was born in Rome, Oneida county, New York, on the 22d of August, 1868, his parents being John and Anne O'Brien, both of whom were natives of Ireland. The father, whose natal year was 1841, was a lad of fourteen when in 1855 he crossed the Atlantic to the United States. He had attained the ripe old age of eighty-two years when in 1923 he passed away in Oneida county and was widely and favorably known throughout the community.

John T. O'Brien attended the public schools of his native town in the acquirement of an education and after putting aside his textbooks served an apprenticeship as a moulder with the Westmoreland Malleable Iron Company of Westmoreland, Oneida county. Thereafter he worked as a journeyman in various places until 1919, when, feeling that his capital and experience justified him in embarking in business on his own account, he opened a foundry in Utica, where he has since developed an extensive and profitable enterprise in the manufacture of brass and bronze castings. The success which he now enjoys is the reward of hard work and persistency of purpose.

On the 1st of July, 1897, Mr. O'Brien was united in marriage to Miss Annie Dorsey, daughter of Patrick Dorsey of Westmoreland, Oneida county, New York. Mr. and Mrs. O'Brien are the parents of three sons: William Patrick, who was born on November 4, 1898, and is an employe of the New York Central Railroad Company in Utica; James John, who was born on the 13th of October, 1900, and is a graduate of Columbia University and now a member of the firm conducting the South Utica Pharmacy; and Harry Francis, whose birth occurred on July 30, 1902, and who was graduated from the Union College of Pharmacy at Albany in 1923. He is an employe of the J. J. Vickers Drug Company in Utica. The members of the family adhere to the Roman Catholic faith, being communicants of St. Agnes church.

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