Obituary of Conrad M. Semler


Publication: Hamilton Journal - The Daily News

Hamilton, OH, United States
vol. 48, no. 280, p. 13, col. 1-2

Conrad M. Semler Dies Suddenly, In Pennsylvania

Conrad M. Semler, former resident of Hamilton, according to word received here by friends, died suddenly at his home in LaTrobe, Pennsylvania, on Sunday, November 4, at 4:20 in the afternoon.

Mr. Semler, suffering from heart disease, became ill during October and on the twentieth of that month became bedfast, although his condition seemed to gradually improve and the end came very unexpectedly.

Mr. Semler was born in Hamilton, August 20, 1863, and so had reached the age of 71 years. He was a son of the late John and Catherine Erb Semler. He was educated in the public schools of Hamilton and in the Hamilton Commercial College. Later he learned the miller's trade with his father, John Semler, who had come West from Pennsylvania in 1841, locating first at Amanda and later in Hamilton, in 1862.

In 1886, John Semler erected the Eagle flour mills on North B street, at which time Conrad M. Semler became a partner of his father under the firm name of Semler and company.


Mills Combined


Upon the death of John Semler, April 28, 1892, at the age of 66 years, the business passed into the hands of the son. Later the Anderson and Shaffer mill, on North Monument avenue, was purchased and the output of the combined mills increased from 75 to 500 barrels of flour a day.

As a result of this expansion Semler and company built up an extensive trade to the South and East.

Mr. Semler also engaged in the real estate business and developed the Semler addition to Hamilton just south of the west end of the Columbia bridge.

In politics he was an ardent part of his party's organization. At one time he was director of public safety in Hamilton.

Fraternally he was a member of Hamilton council No. 338, Royal Arcanum.

It was in 1898 that Mr. Semler decided to leave Hamilton and then located in Derry, Penn., where he took charge of the high voltage plant of the Pittsburg High Voltage company. He then took up his residence in LaTrobe where he remained until the time of his death.

Mr. Semler remained with the high voltage company until 1927, when he disposed of the interest which he had acquired in the company to the Westinghouse company. Shortly afterward he organized the Semler company in Jeannette, Pa., and became president and general manager of the company retaining this position until his death.

Mr. Semler was a member of the First Presbyterian church in LaTrobe and a member of Loyalhanna lodge, No. 275, Free and Accepted Masons, the Consistory, Shrine, Royal Arcanum and Tall Cedars. He evinced a deep interest in the affairs of his home town and worked for its advancement.

Mr. Semler is survived by the widow and five children: Miss Viola Semler, living at home; Howard P. Semler, of LaTrobe; Mrs. Florence Price, New York; Mrs. Jane Wells, LaTrobe; Conrad Semler, Jr., living at home; together with three grandchildren and a number of relatives in Hamilton.

Funeral services were held at the home, Rev. Paul Harper McKee, pastor of the First Presbyterian church of LaTrobe officiating with interment in the Unity cemetery at LaTrobe.

Keywords:Pittsburg High Voltage Insulator Company : Westinghouse
Researcher notes:The year of 1898 mentioned in the article that he moved to Derry, PA is not correct. The year was 1908. This year was confirmed by another newspaper article (undocumented source) and the year the Pittsburg High Voltage Insulator Company started. Westinghouse took over the insulator plant in 1922 after obtaining controlling interest in 1914. Perhaps Westinghouse funded the insulator company in 1908 putting the very successful business man, Conrad Semler, as president.
Supplemental information: 
Researcher:Elton Gish
Date completed:April 3, 2010 by: Elton Gish;