30 August 2012

Shadrach Inman Made Two Fortunes

Shadrach Inman's obituary was carried in newspapers all up the east coast, from Georgia to North Carolina to New York. He was a man of the South who made fortunes in two eras -- the "old" south prior to the Civil War, and the "new" south after it. His story was related in an article by Tammy H. Galloway for the New Georgia Encyclopedia: "The Inman family is representative of those members of the planter class who lost much of their wealth during the Civil War (1861-65) but recouped their fortunes in a postwar urban environment."

Shadrach Inman came to Atlanta from Tennessee about 1865 and established a dry goods store with his youngest son, Hugh. Hugh T. Inman was the father of Louise and Hugh, previously profiled on this blog.

Ms. Galloway continues, explaining how the Inman family, including Shadrach, his brothers, and his sons, expanded their wealth after the Civil War: "The dry-goods stores of the time served as places to barter goods, particularly for farmers growing cotton, but were later discontinued in favor of direct dealings in cotton. The Inmans worked as factors, purchasing cotton from farmers and reselling it when the market turned more favorable. From their interest in cotton they expanded into such related areas as fertilizers, cotton presses, steel hoops to hold compressed cotton, and railroads for the shipping of cotton."

Inman Family Plot
© 2012 S. Lincecum
Shadrach's obituary from the New York Herald (New York), 4 February 1896, Pg. 6 (available online via GenealogyBank):
He Was the Father of John H. Inman, a Well Known Broker, of This City.

ATLANTA, Ga., Feb. 3, 1896. -- Shadrach Inman, father of John H. Inman, of New York, and Samuel and Hugh Inman, of Atlanta, died here to-night.

Mr. Inman was a native of Tennessee. He made two fortunes, his first having been destroyed by the war. His sons are all successful business men.

John H. Inman came here last week to attend his father in his last hours.
Shadrach died at the age of 84, and was buried in Atlanta's Oakland Cemetery. In a slight twist of irony, Shadrach's son John died just 9 months later at the much younger age of 52. He was laid to rest in Bronx, New York's Woodlawn Cemetery.


shellt said...

Interesting post. I really enjoy reading your blog.

Stephanie Lincecum said...

Thank-you! I just adore Oakland Cemetery -- there are thousands of stories resting there!

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