A Privileged Boyhood

John “Jack” Lathrop Tallman

November 16, 1898 – October 24, 1958

Jack TallmanJack’s childhood is put together from a diary his mother kept of their life. A family heirloom which I was very fortunate to acquire a few years ago.

John “Jack” Lathrop Tallman was born at 9 AM at the family residence at 55 Pineapple St., Brooklyn, NY he weighed 9 lbs. The only child of John Francis Tallman and Mai Comstock Lathrop. His grandparents were John P. H. and Sarah J. (Anderson) Tallman of Poughkeepsie, NY and Norman B. and Sarah (Comstock) Lathrop of Torrington, CT. He was christened Jan. 10, 1899 at home by his uncle Rev. Dr. Maltbie D. Babcock. His parents were married in Syracuse April 16, 1896 by Rev. Babcock. Rev. Babcock was the husband of John’s sister Katherine.

In September 1903, they moved to 39 S. Oxford St. Brooklyn. For whatever reason John and Mai’s marriage started souring; from the diary it’s indicated that in May 1904 she stored all her things and in June she and Jack moved to Syracuse. Jack would spend his formative years growing up in Syracuse around the Babcock’s. Mai’s older sister was married to Howard Babcock and her sister-in-law Katherine was married to Rev. Maltbie Babcock.  In October 1905, he learned to ride a bicycle, in February ‘06’ he had the 3 day measles and during the summer he learned to swim and dive. That September he entered Prescott Elementary and in December he came down with the mumps which he promptly gave to his Aunt Katherine. In 1907 he skipped a grade to 5th and again in ‘08’ he skipped two grades to 7th. In August of 1908, he learned to play golf and the next month his father bought him his first set of clubs; he got a first baseman’s glove that Christmas. The summer of 1909 was spent playing golf and tennis every day on Block Island. Located 13 miles off the south coast of Rhode Island the island is known as a popular summer tourist destination. Almost every Christmas was spent at the Babcock’s in Syracuse. In the summer of 1911, with his parents temporarily back together, they went on a family trip. Their first stop was at Niagara Falls, then a steamer on to the Thousand Islands, leaving there they shot the rapids of the St. Lawrence to Montreal. From there they sailed on to Quebec and then back to Montreal where they would head south down to Lake Champlain, visiting the Ausable Chasm known as the Grand Canyon of the Adirondacks. They stayed at Lake George where they fished and Jack shot his first rifle.

Jack entered North High School January 1912 graduating the fall of 1913, age 16, where he played baseball, hockey, tennis and golf. That summer he went to Nova Scotia and Newport with his father, then with his mother to Block Island where he won his first golf tournament. In the fall of ‘13’ he entered Dr. Holbrook’s Military Academy in Briar Cliff on the banks of the Hudson River, NY. Besides learning military drill skills, he studied math, Latin, German and French. His summer break of 1914 again started with 2 weeks at Block Island before going back to Syracuse the rest of the summer where he learned to ride a motorcycle. In 1915 he played on the school’s baseball team and graduated Cum Laude in June and went back to his mother’s in Syracuse. Starting in August he attended Syracuse University summer classes where he studied drawing and German. As usual he found time to again return to Block Island for a couple of weeks, this time by himself. He took a two-year course in bookkeeping and stenography. July of 1916 was spent attending a military training camp at Plattsburg. In August, he found his first job working at the Syracuse Herald-Journal for $12 a week and was tutored three evenings a week in Spanish.

In February 1917, he moved back to Brooklyn with his father. No one knows for sure but, it may have been due to the heart problems his father suffered from. He went to work at the Cuba Cane Sugar Co at 42 Wall Street, New York City earning $60 a month. The United States entered WW I in April of 1917 and Jack enlisted in the Naval Reserve in December. The Cane Company gave him a Christmas bonus. His dad died suddenly from heart failure the 12th of January 1918 and his mother came to stay with him. Not long after, he informed the Company he was leaving to enter active duty; for his dedication they gave him a wrist watch and a check for $200. In March, he was sent to Pelham Bay Naval Station, NYC where he earned a Quartermaster rating and was sent to Officer Candidate School. He was now 19, an Ensign and transferred to a Communication School. When the Armistice was signed the end of October he was discharged from service. It was then while visiting a boyhood friend at Princeton who convinced him to also enroll there.

While at Princeton he was on the Rowing Crew, played Hockey, was Manager of the Cottage Club, Pres. of the Musical Club and leader of the Glee Club. Like his earlier education experiences Jack graduated from Princeton with Honors in 1922. Through a Princeton friend he took a two-year training program with Goodyear Tire Company in Akron, Ohio starting in the factory learning the processes. Next stop in the Ad department and then in Sales working his way to number 25 out of 625 Salesmen. He was then transferred to Manchester, New Hampshire as Branch Manager. Following Goodyear he would make a number of moves working his way up the ladder in the “Advertising world.”

His first would be in Boston to work for the Carroll J. Swan advertising company for a year and a half. Now, with some experience under his belt, his next move was to the Blackman Company as an account executive in New York City. His accounts there were Proctor & Gamble, U.S. Rubber and Socony Vacuum. In March 1930, he took a position as assistant manager of the J. Walter Thompson Advertising Agency in Antwerp, Belgium. His wife would move with him but, it was short lived due to his suffering appendicitis in May. The surgery was performed in the American Hospital in Paris. He remained in the hospital till mid-August when they sent him to the London office where he only stayed three weeks. Whether he quit or it was a mutual decision he returned home to Syracuse and in November 1930 took the same position with Barlow (Soule), Feeley & Richmond Ad Agency there. He was promoted to manager in August 1931 and stayed in that position until March of 1934. That month he accepted a position as Advertising Executive for the Curtis Publishing Company at a base salary of $8,500 plus commissions. Curtis Publishing owned the Saturday Evening Post, Ladies Home Journal, Country Gentleman and Holiday Magazines. Jack’s responsibility was with the Saturday Evening Post with a territory of New York and Connecticut. He purchased a home in Darien, Connecticut before moving to New Canaan in 1947. He kept his position with the Post for 23 years until 1957; learning that he too like his father before him had heart problems and made a decision to retire.

Because of his health he made the decision in September of ‘57’ to move the family to Scottsdale, Ariz. They bought a new home there at 7011 Jackrabbit Road. For a while he did real-estate sales for Caldwell Banker until making acquaintances with Tom Chambers who had recently started a company called Ranch Wagon Foods a specialty food company. At the time, sales of boutique specialty foods was a $70 million dollar business. Jack became Tom’s partner handling distribution in July of ‘58.’ As it turned out, it was a very short lived partnership as Jack succumbed to a heart attack on October 24, 1958 in St. Joseph’s Hospital. He was remembered by all his friends as “Jack”; and an excellent Golfer. He won Club Championships in Connecticut at Wee Burn Country Club and was a past Governor of; also at Woodway Country Club and New Canaan Country Club. A lover of Sports Cars and racing he owned a Morgan and a Porsche. While in Scottsdale he was member of Scottsdale Country Club and Paradise Valley Country Club. An interesting note from his mother’s diary dated January 1918 reads “father died on the 12th at his house 711 Park Place, Brooklyn, NY very suddenly of heart trouble”.

He married first to Isabel Dickinson Maltby on May 4, 1929 in Greenwich, Conn. by the Rev. Dr. Charles G. Sewall, she was born May 8, 1902 in Corning, NY. They went on a honeymoon cruise after the wedding to Europe returning June 2nd to the Port of New York. In 1941 they built a new house in New Canaan moving in March 1942. In April of 1945, Isabel and Jack separated and Isabel obtained a divorce in Florida May 1946. No children.

On Oct. 3, 1947, he married Martha (Pace) Livesay whom he had met in Darien; she too was a divorcee with two young boys. She was a graduate of Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr, Penn. a well-known college prep school for girls and then attended Sarah Lawrence College.

Jack & Martha (Pace) Tallman Dec 1952 at Le Cog RougeJohn and Martha are buried in Green Acres Memorial Park at the corner of N. Hayden and E. McKellips Rd. in Scottsdale, AZ. The picture above of Jack & Martha was taken in December 1952 at Le Cog Rouge 65 East 56th Street, NYC celebrating after the Broadway Play “Grey-eyed People” which starred Walter Matthau.

To provide some background into Jack’s lineage is the following:

His grandfather John P. H., had been a prominent Poughkeepsie Lawyer, later a Judge and involved in many outside successful businesses. His father, was also a lawyer, obtained his bachelor’s and master’s from Syracuse University. He started his career practicing in Poughkeepsie before accepting a management position for New York Life in New York City and finally in charge of underwriters for the Mutual Life Insurance in Brooklyn. He was also a noted art collector. His father-in-law, Norman Lathrop was a successful merchant and store owner in Torrington, Conn. Jack’s father in-fact had to pay a dowry in order to marry Mai Lathrop. Even though they separated, from the diary it’s easy to determine they maintained a friendly relationship and spent a number of family vacations together.

A Tallman Who Fell from Grace

David Newton Tallman

A Man who “Fell From Grace”

Jan. 22, 1872 – Apr. 23, 1958

by Jon Tallman

David will always be one of my special cousins, being that rare double cousin. His grandfather Solomon was a 2nd cousin of my gg-grandfather John  J. but, even closer his grandmother Jane was a younger sister of my gg-grandmother Sarah “Sally”.  And they’re farms were next to each other on Chestnut Ridge.

DN NewtDavid was the third child of David Solomon Tallman, the Town of Washington’s Supervisor and Commissioner of Highways his mother was the former Angeline Hall.  David spent his formative years growing up on the family farm in South Millbrook, Dutchess County, New York.  As a youth he was educated in the local schools and was actively involved with sports, especially baseball.  His grandparents were Solomon and Jane Ann (Newton) Tallman whose farm had been on Hammond Hill Road located on Chestnut Ridge.  His given name came from his great grandfather David Newton.

His siblings were older brother Akin Solomon b.1868 d.10/31/1929; a clerk for 27 years for Congressman John H. Ketchum and then as personal secretary to Hamilton Fish II and Edward Platt.  In 1920-21 he was a clerk on the Committee for Banking & Currency.  His other brother Isaac b.1870 d.10/31/1950 followed in their father’s footsteps.  Isaac, also an accomplished Trap Shooter competed in tournaments in New York and throughout the east.  In 1900 he competed at the Grand Opening of the Interstate Park in Queens, N.Y. which featured Annie Oakley who was entered in the live bird contest.  His younger sister Elizabeth b.1876 d.8/12/1940 was a well know local seamstress.  His siblings never married and Isaac and Elizabeth were caretakers of the family farm in South Millbrook.

David prepared for college at Seymour Smith Institute in Pine Plains, NY.  In 1893 he graduated from Union College in Schenectady with a degree in Civil Engineering.  He was the Class Historian, a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity, his senior year won the Engineering prize for his thesis on “Civil Engineering”.  Active in sports, he was a pitcher on the college baseball team and 1892 was elected its team captain.

Like many at the time seeking his fortune and future in the west he moved to Willmar, Minnesota in 1893.  Obtaining a clerks job in the superintendent’s office of the Great Northern Railway; probably due to his being an acquaintance of the superintendent William Thorne, second son of Samuel Thorne, of Millbrook.  There he met and married Gertrude Clara Adelaide Larson the daughter of Andrew Larson one of its wealthy pioneer citizens.

The daily papers of Willmar and those of St. Paul have long articles giving a glowing account of their wedding, which occurred Tuesday, March 27, 1894.  The ceremony was solemnized in St Luke’s Episcopal Church, which was beautifully decorated for the occasion with potted plants, and cut flowers in banks and festoons, which gave the appearance of a fairyland.  All that wealth could afford was done to make the occasion what it was—one long to be remembered in Willmar society.  The bride, who is the daughter of Mr. Andrew Larson, a wealthy merchant and banker of Willmar, is a general favorite on account of her social position, her beauty, her charming disposition and her considerable attainments in art and music.

The wedding march was rendered while the groom, his best man and the ushers, followed by the six bridesmaids, dressed in white, with white roses, and the bride leaning upon the arm of her father, marched to the chancel rail.  The bride’s dress was cordon pleated white satin with pearl trimmings, heavy lace veil, and in her hand she carried a white prayer book and a white rose.  The reception at the spacious residence was from 8:30 to 10 p. m., during which the bride and groom, amid the discourse of the best music, received congratulations from the scores of guests present.  The presents were costly, beautiful, and seemed innumerable.  Of one which was not visible, the Willmar papers say, “It came-from a wealthy father, and consists of an annual income sufficient to keep them in comfortable circumstances the rest of their days.”

The groom is a thorough gentleman, and has never disappointed his many friends who predicted a fine future for him.  He graduated from Union College, Schenectady, NY with honors.  All his many friends will rejoice at his social success, and be glad also to hear that be holds a very responsible position in the general office of the Eastern Minnesota Railroad in West Superior.

His family, friends and business associates, simply referred to him as “DN” or “Newt”.  Later years while on the golf circuit he picked up the nickname “Tolly” by golfing buddies.  David would earn a real life story that reads better than science fiction.  While in his prime, he would become one of the wealthiest men in Minnesota a self-made millionaire who lost it all.

David and Clara would have five daughters, Helen Margaret b.2/1895, Esther Jane b.10/1898, Gertrude May b.6/26/1902 and twins Margaret Angeline and Marjorie Mary b.6/26/1905.  In 1900 he was a Minnesota delegate in Philadelphia that helped nominate William McKinley and Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt to the White House.D N Tallman Family 1915

Three years after starting with the Great Northern, he was in the banking business, joining his father-in-law Andrew. By 1897 he began acquiring independent telephone companies and formed the Minnesota Central Telephone Co. with about 2000 miles of toll line and 26 local exchanges. In 1902 he announced the expenditure of $250,000 to update and improve its facilities. After seven years in the telephone business, he divested his interests to focus his attention to the Willmar Realty Co. which he started in April 1902 with $30,000 capital. In April 1905, he formed the Dakota Development Co. and the Farmers’ Lumber Company. In May of 1906 with $100,000 in capital stock he started the Northern Town & Land Co. Both companies were engaged in developing townsites along the Great Northern system where the railroad was building new rail spurs. Finally in January 1907 with $500,000 capital stock the Tallman Investment Co.,  with D. N. president and treasurer, father-in-law Andrew Larson vice-president and Sigurdt B. Qvale secretary, this was done for convenience in overseeing all his companies. The Town Site business was probably partially financed through the 1909 sale of 482 acres of his livestock farm (at the time the largest in Minnesota) to the State. September 29, 1909 an auction was held to sell all the farm implements, remaining animals and feed, crop, etc. In 1911 the State built the Willmar State Hospital there and in 1917 expanded and renamed it the Willmar State Asylum. Another part of his farm became the Willmar Country Club (today Eagle Creek Golf Course). David helped with the design of the first nine holes which opened in 1931. David is also acknowledged as having been able to acquire the funding to have the Willmar Public Library built, opening in 1904. Having Andrew Carnegie as acquaintance, who at the time was giving matching funds based on the Carnegie formula to cities for library construction, which allowed the Library to be built. The Town Site business can be directly attributed to his personal friendship with Louis W. Hill, the son of James J. Hill, Great Northern’s chairman. At first, Hill’s Great Northern had an agreement with Frederick H. Stoltze, a St. Paul Coal and Lumber dealer. After some dealings in which there were only minor successes, Hill knew that Stoltze was not the man to entrust with future sites. By 1905 Louis, had now assumed control of the Great Northern from his father; asked his personal friend Tallman to take the lead in these ventures as the Great Northern was in stiff competition with the Canadian “Soo Line.” Hill’s organization determined where the railroad towns should be built and the desired size of each calculated on the potential grain freight business. It should be noted here that the Dakota’s and Montana were in the heart of the Great Wheat belt known for its spring wheat. Eureka, SD held the distinction of once being the “wheat capital of the world”. Tallman then designed 3 or 4 master plan layouts of the towns that would meet the specs’ of the railroad. However, before any advertising or sales could begin; the proposed Town plats had to be filed and the lots had to be staked. All told, Tallman became the principal investor of 125 small towns in Montana and in North and South Dakota.

These new towns were advertised widely in the press and were launched by auction.  Tallman hired Willard F. Hanks, a savvy salesperson, to attract merchants to establish good trade opportunities in the new towns.  Adds such as: “Splendid openings for all lines of business, in a territory already noted for its productiveness.  Each Town has an enormous territory both North and South which means big business and large profits.”  Promises of establishing a lumber company to furnish supplies for building construction was a known factor.  Tallman established banks in 42 of these towns and was the president; he also established 24 lumber companies.

One of his Towns “Tolna, ND” includes a little insight about it’s history and “Newt” click the link below.


One of his banks in Montana came about as follows:  The Havre National Bank of Havre, MT. was founded on July 1, 1909 with a capitol of $50,000 with $10,000 surplus.  Frank Chestnut owned the buildings that originally housed the bank; Directors included Tallman (pres.), C. F. George of Helena, M. L. Helgerson (vice-pres.), ex-mayor E. F. Burke, and A. L. Herrig, cashier, of Havre.  Tallman’s string of banks were in Minnesota, Montana and North Dakota.  Helgerson, also controlled his own Land Company of Lethbridge, Canada and Minnesota.  Major stockholders in the Havre National Bank also included Louis W. Hill.  Another major stockholder in a number of his banks was Sigurdt B. Qvale the mayor of Willmar.  The Tallman Investment Company purchased the lot at a cost of $7,500 with the aid of E. C. Carruth, prominent local real estate and insurance salesman.  The new bank building completed in 1910, was described in the “St. James Plaindealer” of Minnesota –as being 30-by-80 feet and having a basement with the first floor being devoted entirely to the bank.  The front of the building held a “court” for the transaction of banking business and had massive mahogany fixtures and furniture with marble counters having brass latticework.  The floor had multi colored tile blocks and the whole interior had a “rich appearance”.  It was the central bank for several branches in northern Montana including Galata, Concord, Dunkirk, Brady, Collins, and Dutton.  In 1912, the county attorney, coroner, assessor, and superintendent of schools were all located there because of a shortage of space.  Rent was $210 per month.  The Havre National Bank did not remain at this location long, however, as they relocated to the old Citizen’s Bank location at 228 First Street in 1913.

David’s financial collapse went as follows: “he told that with WWI he lost most of his good men and after the War, property values fell from $100/acre to $20.” Times were tough in the 1920’s, dry years, plant diseases and insect infestations took their toll. When the Great Depression set in, during the 30’s half the population was on relief and Tallman’s banks held loans primarily to farmers. Farmers were unable to bring in enough crops to market, bringing them to their knees and thus his empire started its collapse. He was now losing his fortune faster than he had made it. Another factor he may not have recognized that certainly contributed were the railroads competition for freight and Towns with grain elevators. The two railroads were continually spec’ing towns practically side by side and in most cases only one succeeding to attract growth. One 1952 story about Tallman included the mention that he had lost “$600,000 in one nightmarish stretch”. However, he didn’t lose his fortune all at once. He was still well off enough in 1927 to take Clara and the twins on trip to Egypt where they can be seen riding camels at the Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx. His holdings were so large it wasn’t until the late 1940’s that he eventually lost their house.

DN never let this fall from grace get him down. From a letter dated October 12th 1936 quote- “After all when Depressions come that you had nothing to do with-and sweep away life’s work why should one go “nutty” about it, as so many have.” In a number of his letters he talked about his blessed home life with his wife and daughters.

Tallman could count among his personal friends the likes of such as Louis W. Hill, Pres. of the Great Northern; Murry Guggenheim and his son Edmund A. of the Mining Industry; Robert A. Stranahan, founder of Champion Spark Plug; Hall of Famer – Babe Ruth; Jack Ryerson whose father helped organize the US Golf Association; David Draper Dayton of Dayton Dry Goods Stores.

Newt's TrophiesAt age 50 he took up golf and won 142 trophies.  Tallman was dubbed “Minnesota’s Grand Old Man of Golf” in a 1952 profile published by the West Central Tribune of Willmar.  When it comes to stars of Minnesota golf, there’s one star that stands with the all-time greats but remains largely forgotten to modern players.  Tallman is arguably one of the most accomplished senior golfers of all time.  He won four Minnesota Senior Golf Championships, a feat trumped only by Runcie Martin who won five.  On the National stage he won a National Seniors Championship.  At 55 he played in the 1927 US Amateur Championship held at Minikahda Club won by Bobby Jones Jr. in Minneapolis but failed to qualify.  For seven years he played in the Seniors National Golf at Apawamis Country Club in Rye, NY.  He finished second twice and played on the US team against Canada and England.  He played golf often with Babe Ruth in Belleair, FL. during the spring training season.  He won numerous Midwestern and Southern senior titles.  He was posthumously inducted into the Minnesota Golf Association’s Hall Of Fame in June 2010.DN left and Babe Ruth 2

“He was a fantastic putter; he could putt up a storm” says Richard Larson of Willmar.  As a teenager Larson caddied for “DN” for a handful of years starting in 1949 by which time Tallman was 77.  “I never heard DN complain (unless it was a golf shot that went bad),” wrote Larson, his former caddie.  “He was a very upbeat guy.  Very likeable, he was short of stature at that time and kind of shuffled along.  He always looked forward to that next shot.  He was sharp as a tack, fun to be with and knew a few jokes.  He was quick on the draw”.  Though Tallman stopped golfing competitively in the early1940’s he continued to shoot his age even as he approached his 80th birthday.  “By the time I started caddying for him, he had become a smaller version of the athlete he had been,” Larson wrote in a letter about Tallman.  “He used a wood as a cane when he walked around the course.  Even though they had electric carts at that time, he chose to walk.  As I look back, I’m sure he did this to keep his strength up.  When I caddied for him, he couldn’t hit the ball a great distance, but he made up for it with accuracy”, Larson added.  “He did shoot his age a few times when I caddied for him.”  He served as President of the Minnesota Golf Association for five years from 1925 through 1930.

The following is a quote from his granddaughter Jean Tallman (Wilson) Buechner.  “I will share with you a story from 1946 when Babe Ruth came to Cleveland to play golf with ‘Newt’.  They met twice a year for golf in Hot Springs, Arkansas.  When ‘The Babe’ was introduced to me at age 14, I thought I was going to be given a Baby Ruth bar.  I am looking at that autograph right now.  Then the 2 golfers played at our little country club in Pepper Pike, Ohio”.

Of his five daughters; Helen married Willard Ware Wilson a Trust officer with the Cleveland Trust Co. one of the largest banks in Ohio.  D. D. Dayton of the Dayton Store Empire sent a wedding gift by aero-plane from Minneapolis to Helen on her wedding day.  Esther married W. V. Freeman son of Right Rev James Edward Freeman the 3rd Bishop of Washington, DC.  Gertrude married Frank Roos a 1925 graduate of the Univ. of Minnesota.  Marjorie married Vendale Lundquist a Willmar judge and attorney.  At least two of David’s daughters learned the game well from their father.  In 1924 Esther Tallman Freeman was the Minnesota Women’s Amateur Champion defeating Mrs. Dow L. George at the Minneapolis Country Club.  In the same year she also won the women’s Division of the Resorters Tournament at Alexandria Golf Course, Alexandria, MN.  She was the 1922 Runner-up of the Minnesota Women’s Amateur at Interlachen Country Club.  Daughter Helen Tallman Wilson in 1938 won the Tracey Cup at The Country Club of Cleveland, OH.

David Newton Tallman died April 23rd 1958 nearly 2 years following his Clara’s passing.  They are buried overlooking Foot Lake in the Lakeview Section of Fairview cemetery in Willmar.

Major Golfing Accomplishments

November 1st 2010: Posthumously inducted into the Minnesota Golf Association Hall of Fame.

1927: Played in the US Amateur Championship held at Minikahda Club, Minneapolis, MN.

Seven-time player in the Seniors National Golf at Apawamis Country Club in Rye, NY.

1931, 1934 & 1943: Winner of the Lakeland Open Golf Tournament, Eagle Creek Golf Course, Willmar, MN.

1928 & 1932: winner of the Birchmont Golf Tournament, Bemidji Town & CC, Lake Bemidji, MN.

Winner of five “Senior Trans-Mississippi” titles.

Winner of four Minnesota State Senior titles: 1926, 1927, 1928 and 1937.

Florida West Coast Senior Championship 1934, 36 and 39 winner and permanent possession of the Murry Guggenheim trophy.

1942: winner of the Detroit Lakes tournament, Detroit Lakes Country Club, Detroit Lakes, MN

D_N_Tallman_houseDN’s Original House c. 1910

David's House-011925 taken after adding an east addition and extensive exterior landscaping.

“Boomer” – Entrepreneur – Businessman

Biography of E. E. “Doc” Tallman written by William Tallman Hagny in the 1970’s

updated by distant cousin Jon Tallman 2015.

E.E. as a young manErwin Edwin Tallman, prominent Guthrie businessman and pioneer was known to most people in Guthrie and Logan County, Oklahoma as “E.E., or Doc”.  He was born Oct. 5, 1863 in Davenport, Iowa, 6th child and 3rd son of Darius Benham Tallman and Emeline Smith both of Dutchess County, N.Y.  His father had 10 surviving children 2 by his 1st wife Louisa Jane Gray and 8 by Emeline.  On Nov. 12, 1881 Erwin married Carrie Mae Sweet born April 5, 1865 in Greenboro, Ind., daughter of Eli Macy Sweet of Indiana and Martha Susan Risk of Virginia.  They were the parents of three daughters Mattie Emeline, Alice Mae and Bessie Mattie.  Mrs. Tallman died May 31, 1937 and Mr. Tallman died Sept. 6, 1952.  Both are buried in Summit View Cemetery, Guthrie.

E.E., Mattie E. Carrie May, AliceMattie was born June 3, 1883 in Davenport, Iowa and died April 30, 1972 in Santa Monica, Cal.  Mattie married Ernest Ludwig Hagny in Guthrie July 11, 1906 at her parent’s home by the Rev. Harry Omar Scott and honeymooned in the northern states.  Ernest, known by many as “Jack”, was born June 1, 1878 in Keokuk, Iowa and died Sept. 23, 1954 in Downey, Cal. Both are buried in Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Glendale, CA.  They were the parents of William Tallman Hagny, born June 8, 1907 and Alice Harryette Hagny born May 3, 1919 in Guthrie.  They first lived in Oklahoma City. Ernest, a railroad man, consequently made several moves with his family until 1917 when they settled in Denver, Colorado.  They resided there until his retirement when they moved to Downey.

Alice Tallman was born March 12, 1885 in Davenport and died Mar. 26, 1965 in Guthrie, where she is buried with her parents and a sister in Summit View Cemetery.  She married John William Martin Dec. 12, 1912 in the First Presbyterian Church by the Rev. G. O. Nichols.  They left for a honeymoon in San Antonio, TX.  The marriage however, was short-lived and after the divorce she resumed her maiden name.  “Miss Alice,” as she was known to her many friends in Guthrie, remained with her parents and assisting them with the businesses eventually becoming a co-owner.

Bessie was born Nov. 5, 1888 in Bentonville, Ark. and died in Guthrie, May 20, 1890, she too is interred in Summit View.

Mattie and Alice were educated locally at Carleton Guthrie Schools and both were attending Christian Female College (now Columbia College) in Columbia, Missouri in the years 1903 and 04.

A “Boomer” organization began growing in the 1880’s started by William Couch and here, I’ll make the assumption that Erwin saw an opportunity for a new future in Oklahoma Territory.  E.E. having been born, raised and married in Iowa made a temporary move to Bentonville, AR where they spent the winter of “88”.  Then on April 22nd, 1889 Erwin made the “Run” with a team and buckboard.  It’s estimated that nearly 14,000 made the “Run” that day with only 1000 staking a claim.  Erwin staked his homestead northeast of Guthrie, near where Summit View Cemetery is now located.Homestead ranch 1891

Mr. Tallman started the first dairy farm in Logan County and delivered milk which sold for five cents per quart and fifteen cents per gallon.  After two years of operating the dairy, he moved his family to Guthrie to the southwest corner of Division Street and Noble Avenue, where he established the first large “wagon yard”, feed store and livery stable.  In 1910 the feed store and livery grew with the addition of a large brick and frame structure added and he started one of the first automobile agencies selling Reo and Oldsmobile.  “Miss Alice” held the two-fold distinction of bookkeeper and driving instructor for the new automobile owners.  In later years it was again updated for servicing all automobiles, adding a filling station, yellow taxi cab and Greyhound bus station that he operated with his daughter.  The Tallman’s also had the distinction of having the first telephone in Guthrie with the number 1. The building suffered serious fire damage in 1946 but, was saved.  Today the building is on the Cities Historical list and is occupied by the Stables Restaurant.

EE Tallman Ph BkEarly Auto

In the year 1904, St. Louis held the “World’s Fair” in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase.  Erwin, Carrie, Mattie and Alice would take advantage by visiting the Expo and left Sep. 3, 1904 on the Santa Fe train.

In April 1906, Erwin with Jay E. Pickard purchased a lot at the corner of Division St. & Cleveland Ave. for real estate firm Milliken & Reynolds to build 100 room hotel and lease to hoteliers Van Dunn & Eaton.

Mr. Tallman held the distinction of serving for a half century as County-Weigher, a position to which he was regularly elected until his retirement.  He also served terms on the school board and city council and was active for many years in civic affairs.  He was a member of the First Presbyterian church, the Guthrie Lodge No. 35 AF & AM, Guthrie Country Club, the Oklahoma Consistory, and the 89ers Association.

Mrs. Carrie Mae Tallman came to Oklahoma a month after her husband; having lived in Bentonville for six months before the urge for adventure and the chance of making a business stake in the new territory took them to Guthrie. After moving to the southwest corner of Division St. and Noble Ave. from the dairy farm, Mrs. Tallman was active until a few weeks before her death.  She spent her time at the desk in the business which her husband owned and was well known throughout central Oklahoma.  By dint of hard work and sheer business enterprise she assisted in building up the transportation business that was synonymous with the Tallman name, and her personality lent an individual note to an occupation in which meeting of emergency was an everyday occurrence.  Mrs. Tallman was an early member of the Guthrie chapter of the Order of Eastern Star and the Presbyterian Church.  Her strong character that lent itself to business routine, had another side, although not openly displayed. She was a talented painter, her skillful handling of oils subjects were displayed in their home.

Today there exists several of “Doc” and Carrie’s descendants in California.Tallman Garage 2015-02 (c)