Oliver Hazard Payne was born to Harry B Payne (b Hamilton, NY 10 Nov 1810; d 9 Sept 1896; married 16 Aug 1836) and Mary Perry on 21 July 1839.in Cleveland, Ohio.

Mary Perry was the only daughter of Nathan Perry and Pauline Shimmer. Nathan had moved to Cleveland in 1804, one year after Ohio became a state. He became the chief rival of John Jacob Astor in the fur trade, and later became the leading merchant in Cleveland.

Edward Perry, a Quaker, emigrated to Sandwich, Mass around 1639.Two of his sons, tired of harassment of Quakers, moved around 1704 to Narragansett country, near the town of Newport, Rhode Island which had large farms which used many slaves imported through Newport. The Church of England enjoyed greater prestige. The impact of this gay, opulent, slaveholding society was unfavorable to the growth of so ascetic a sect as the Quakers, and the Perrys eventually moved into the Anglican communion.

Freeman Perry married Mercy Hazard in 1755, the daughter of Oliver Hazard. She inherited 300 acres in North Kingstown and lived and died there.

The more famous of the Perry's remained in Newport. Christopher Perry broke out of the pacifist Quaker tradition and served in both the army and navy during the American Revolution. His oldest son, Oliver Hazard Perry, was the victor of the battle of Lake Erie in 1812, but died in 1819 aged 34. A younger son, Commodore Matthew Calbraith Perry was a career naval officer. Samuel Eliot Morison's biography title says it all: Old Bruin, Commodore Matthew Calbraith Perry, 1794 – 1858, The American Naval Officer Who Helped Found Liberia, Hunted Pirates in the West Indies, Practised Diplomacy with the Sultan of Turkey And the King of the Two Sicilies; Commanded the Gulf Squadron in the Mexican War, Promoted the Steam Navy and the Shell Gun, and Conducted the Naval Expedition Which Opened Japan. Commodore Perry was instrumental in establishing the Naval Academy and enforcing education of naval midshipmen.

Harry Payne had come to Cleveland from Hamilton, New York, where many of the Paynes settled.. The Payne (or Paine) family dated back to the pilgrim days in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, and followed the time-honored route from Eastern Massachusetts to Western Massachusetts then Albany, New York area and eventually to the middle of New York State when that area was opened for development. The couple had six children.

Children of Henry B Payne and Mary Perry

Nathan Perry Payne born 17 Aug 1837 at the house of his grandfather, Nathan Perry, Jr., in Cleveland Ohio; enlisted in the Cleveland Grays "at the outbreak of the Civil War"; engaged in numerous commercial and mining enterprises in Mahoning and Summit Counties of Ohio, particularly in relation to the coal industry; councilman often from 1862 to 1872; elected Mayor of Cleveland 1875, serving until 1877; died 12 May 1886 at Cleveland, Ohio, two months after the death of his grandmother Perry, whose home he shared.

Oliver Hazard Payne (b Cleveland 21 July 1839, d NYC 27June 1917) is the subject of this essay

Flora Payne (b 25 Jan 1842 Clinton Park, Cleveland, Ohio; d 5 February 1893 in New York City) married Oliver's Yale chum, William Collins Whitney in 1869.

Henry Wilson Payne born 7 Mar 1845 at Clinton Park, Cleveland, Ohio; graduated Yale 1867; Columbia Law School 1870; admitted to the Ohio bar 1870; practiced at Cleveland; went abroad for his health and died at Mentone, France, February 8, 1878. One source says he died from injuries originally sustained from rowing at Yale. He was commonly called Harry.

Elisha Howard Payne born 29 June 1851 at Clinton Park, Cleveland,Ohio; died there 1 Sept 1852)

Mary Perry Payne affectionately called "Mollie" (born 9 July 1854 at Cleveland, Ohio; died West Palm Beach Florida 20 Jan 1898. married Charles William Bingham who was identified with the business interests of Cleveland and was the head of William Bingham Company, manufacturer and distributors of hardware, founded by Mr. William Bingham, his father. Before going abroad to study in Germany in 1868, she studied at Newburgh, New York, with two or three other girls in a private home under private tutors Mollie spent two years abroad, missing Flora's wedding. The greater part of Mollie's time in Europe was spent in study but she also found occasion to visit Switzerland and just before her return home to spend some weeks in Italy.

Children of William Collins Whitney and Flora Payne Whitney

After reading this account, Payne Middleton, Payne Whitney's granddaughter wrote (in 2002):

Oliver was angry that two years after the death of his sister, William C Whitney remarried. At that time he told Harry Payne Whitney and his brother, William Payne Whitney and the two sisters that he would leave his fortune to whichever children took his side; I like to think that they decided that two would go to Oliver and two would stay with Dad. William Payne and a sister went with Oliver, and William Payne dropped the William and was henceforth known as (Plain) Payne which has caused confusion! So the house in Georgia was left to Plain Payne, who died in 1927, and subsequently to his wife, Helen Hay, daughter of Lincoln's biographer John Hay, and not to Harry Payne Whitney who inherited nothing from Oliver Payne but inherited from William C. Whitney

Despite this unpleasantness, Harry Payne Whitney and Payne Whitney and their families remained friends.

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Philanthropy Payne quietly donated to many educational and medical causes. In his will he left $500,000 to Philips Academy at Andover, $200,000 to Hamilton College (recall the Paynes settled in Hamilton), $200,000 to the University of Virginia, and $1,000,000 to Yale University, which had granted him an honorary bachelors degree in 1878. He also left $1,000,000 to the New York Public Library.

Having been cured of a serious illness by physician Alfred Loomis, Payne became interested in assisting the medical profession. In 1887 he endowed the Loomis Laboratory in New York City for teaching and research in chemistry, biology and pathology. In 1889 he donated $500,000 to found Cornell Medical School, and his subsequent donations to this school totaled over $8 million. He gave New York University $150,000 for its medical school and $100,000 each to New York City's Post-Graduate Hospital and to the University of Virginia and Western Reserve University to establish laboratories of experimental medicine. He also donated $1,000,000 to Lakeside Hospital in Cleveland, $200,000 to St. Vincent's Charity Hospital at Cleveland, and $200,000 to the Cleveland Jewish Orphan Asylum.

The family history in 1954 contains a brief biography of Oliver Hazard Payne:

Colonel Oliver Hazard Payne, born July 21, 1839, at Cleveland, Ohio; received his preliminary education at Phillip's Academy, Andover, Massachusetts; matriculated at Yale College with the class of 1863; left college to enlist in the Union Army in October 1861; commissioned lieutenant "First Battalion of Yates, Illinois, Sharpshoo9ters"; saw service at New Madrid, Corinth, Farmingham and Boonesville; promoted to the rank of colonel in command of the 124th Ohio Volunteer Infantry; his letters to his father from camp have been preserved by the family; he emerged from the war with the rank of brigadier general, though he never used a higher title than colonel; engaged in business in Cleveland after the war; received degree of A.B. from Yale College in 1878; removed to New York about 1884; noted for his integrity, sweetness of character and great accomplishments; an ardent huntsman and interested in outdoor sports; treasurer and director of the Standard Oil Company; director of the American Tobacco Company; interested in philanthropic work and a founder and contributor of the Cornell Medical School and of the New York Public Library; died June 27, 1917.

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Burial The Find-a-Grave website indicates that Oliver Hazard Payne is buried in Lake View Cemetery, Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Plot 1,Section 6, lot 235


George W Lewis, The Campaigns of the 124th Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry, 1912 (Available in New York Public Library)

Photo in uniform downloaded from http://community.webshots.com

Ron Chernow, Titan, the life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr., New York, Random House, 1998. This is the best balanced account of Standard Oil, because Chernow had access to the Rockefeller library in Pocantico Hills, NY.

Obituary in New York Times 28 June 1917 and article in NY Times 7 July 1917
Aphrodite info: http://members.tripod.com/BIW_History/page6.html

Private communication from Payne Middleton, Oliver's great grand niece, via Charles Haughton

David Patrick Columbia, Family of Fortune, Quest Magazine, October 2001, pp 78-87

Payne , Bingham, Bolton and Allied Families, Genealogical and Biographical, issued under the Editorial Supervision of Ruth Lawrence; New York, 1954, National Americana Publications, Inc.

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