Lackawanna Steel Company : A neighborhood Mill

John G. Milburn
Milburn in 1901
John George Milburn

(1851-11-14)November 14, 1851
DiedAugust 11, 1930(1930-08-11) (aged 78)
NationalityEnglish, American
EmployerCarter, Ledyard & Milburn
Political partyDemocrat
Mary Patty Stocking
(m. 1875; died 1930)
ChildrenDevereux Milburn
John George Milburn and Lewis Cass Ledyard in 1915

John George Milburn (December 14, 1851 – August 11, 1930) was a prominent lawyer in Buffalo, New York and New York City, a president of the New York City Bar Association, and a partner at the law firm Carter Ledyard & Milburn.[1]

Early life

Milburn was born on December 14, 1851 near Sunderland, England in 1851, the son of a civil engineer. In his youth, he studied civil engineering at the insistence of his father. However, at the age of eighteen his sister wrote to him from Batavia, New York urging him to emigrate to America, which he did the following year.[1]


In 1867, he arrived in Batavia to study law with the firm of Wakeman & Watson. Though he was initially denied entrance to the bar because he was not an American citizen, several influential acquaintances successfully petitioned the New York State Legislature for an exception based on his intention to seek citizenship. He was granted admission to the bar in 1874.[1]

In 1876, the newly married Milburns moved to Buffalo, New York, which was developing as a major industrial city. He practiced law alone until 1879, when he formed the law firm of Sprague, Milburn & Sprague with Hon. E.C. Sprague and Henry W. Sprague. In 1882, after working for a year in Denver, Colorado, Milburn returned to Buffalo to form the law firm Rogers, Locke & Milburn, with Sherman Rogers and Francis Locke.

Citizen of Buffalo

Milburn was a prominent citizen of Buffalo, serving as president of the Buffalo Club, a member of the executive board of the Buffalo Public Library, and a trustee of the Erie County and City Hall in Buffalo. He was also a prominent Democrat and a personal friend of Grover Cleveland.[2]

Milburn is perhaps best known as the President of the Pan-American Exposition, the 1901 World's Fair in Buffalo.[3] He prepared a suite in his house to host President William McKinley, who was coming to the Exposition. After the president was fatally shot by anarchist Leon Czolgosz at the Exposition on September 6, 1901, he was treated at the hospital and brought back to Milburn's home. He died there eight days later.[4]

Because of this event, the house became a popular tourist site. After it passed out of the family, it was later adapted as a hotel; it was demolished in 1957.[5]

Later career

In 1904, at the invitation of the prominent attorney Lewis Cass Ledyard, Milburn joined the New York City law firm of Carter, Rollins & Ledyard, which became Carter, Ledyard & Milburn upon his joining. There, Milburn represented many high-profile clients, including Standard Oil, the New York Stock Exchange, and the Metropolitan Street Railway. He also served as president of the New York City Bar Association from 1920 to 1921.[1]

Personal life

In 1875, he married Mary Patty Stocking (d. 1930), a teacher at Bryan's Seminary and the daughter of farmers in Wyoming County.[6] Together, they were the parents of three sons:

  • Devereux Milburn (1881–1942), who married Nancy Gordon Steele (d. 1955)[7] in 1913.[8]
  • John George Milburn, Jr. (1882–1932),[9] also a lawyer.[10][11]
  • Ralph Milburn (b. 1888), who married Anne Scarborough Hollingsworth, daughter of William Hollingsworth in 1910.[12][13][14]

Milburn died on August 11, 1930, at Claridge's Hotel while on a trip to London, England.[15] He was 78 years old.[1] His estate was worth $1,735,059 upon his death.[16]


Through his son John Jr. he was the grandfather of Dorothy Milburn (1907–1985), who married Samuel Sloan Auchincloss, Jr. (1903–1991)[17] (whom she divorced in 1938[18] and married Frank Ford Russell that same year[19] and Saint-John Perse in 1958), and Patty Milburn (1910–1986), who married Edgar Stirling Auchincloss III (1909–2000),[9][20] who founded the Country Club of Darien.[21]


  1. ^ a b c d e "JOHN G. MILBURN DEAD IN LONDON; Famous New York Lawyer Is Stricken at Claridge's in His 79th Year. PAN-AMERICAN FAIR'S HEAD McKinley Died at His Home in Buffalo--Milburn Chairman of Barnard Trustees. Close Friend of McKinley. Partner of Senator Wolcott. Counsel to Institutions. Member of Many Clubs". The New York Times. 12 August 1930. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  2. ^ Truman C. White (ed). "Milburn, John G.." Our County and Its People. Vol. 2. [n.p.]: Boston History, 1898: part III, p. 33
  3. ^ "The Milburn Home". The New York Times. 7 September 1901. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  4. ^ "Milburn Home, Where President M'Kinley Died, Is an Object of Interest These Days". Buffalo Courier-Express. 21 October 1901. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  5. ^ “Milburn Home, Where President M’Kinley Died, Is an Object of Interest These Days”, Buffalo Courier 21 Oct. 1901
  6. ^ "MRS. JOHN G. MILBURN.; Wife of Ex-President of New York State Bar Association Dies at 76". The New York Times. 26 July 1930. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  7. ^ "MRS. DEVEREUX MILBURN". The New York Times. 10 November 1955. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  8. ^ "DEVEREUX MILBURN DIES PLAYING GOLF; Greatest Back in Polo History Member of Team That First Beat England in 1909 | HE WAS STAR UNTIL 1927 | 1914 Only Year 'Big Four' Lost to British--Noted for Speed and Hitting Power". The New York Times. 16 August 1942. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  9. ^ a b "JOHN G. MILBURN JR. 'DIES IN 53D YEAR; Retired Lawyer Is Victim of Internal Hemorrhage in Roosevelt Hospital. FATHER WAS LEADER OF BAR His Brother Was Devereux Milburn, Noted Polo PlayeruA Graduate of Oxford". The New York Times. 20 June 1932. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  10. ^ "Mrs. J.G. Milburn Jr. Very Ill". The New York Times. January 15, 1928. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  11. ^ "J. G. MILBURN JR. FUNERAL; Private Services Are Held at His Brother'8 Westbury Home". The New York Times. 22 June 1932. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  12. ^ "GRACE MILBURN TO WED ON JAN. 25; Will Have Ten Attendants at Marriage to H.H. Pell Jr., in St. Thomas's". The New York Times. January 9, 1930. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  13. ^ "MARRIED. Milburn -- Hollingsworth". The New York Times. 29 March 1910. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  14. ^ "The Calendar of the Week.; Milburn -- Hollingsworth". The New York Times. 27 March 1910. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  15. ^ "BAR HAILS MEMORY OF JOHN G. MILBURN; Judge Cardozo, at Memorial Here, Stresses Stalwart Integrity of Late Lawyer.HIS IDEALISM IS EXTOLLEDE.W. Sheldon Says Graciousnessand Modesty of Attorney RevealedHis Rare Spirit". The New York Times. 16 December 1930. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  16. ^ "Million Estate to Family". The New York Times. 17 March 1932. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  17. ^ Auchincloss, Samuel Sloan (1990). The Memoirs of Samuel Sloan Auchincloss Jr., October 12, 1903 to November 5, 1991. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  18. ^ "Divorces S. S. Auchincloss". The New York Times. 22 July 1938. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  19. ^ "MRS. AUCHINCLOSS MARRIED IN CHAPEL; Alumna of Foxcroft School Wed to Frank Ford Russell". The New York Times. 10 August 1938. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  20. ^ "MISS MILBURN WED TO S. S. AUCHINCLOSS; Ceremony in Cathedral of the Incarnation, Garden City, Performed by Dean Sargent. RECEPTION AT GROOMBRIDGE Estelle Sanders Weds Lieut. Com. R. F. Lawson, Royal Canadian Navy -- Other Marriages". The New York Times. 13 October 1927. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  21. ^ "Paid Notice: Deaths AUCHINCLOSS, EDGAR S." The New York Times. 7 February 2000. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  • Mark Goldman. High Hopes: The Rise and Decline of Buffalo, New York. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1983.

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