S. D. Woodruff & Sons
Stiles Denison Woodruff was a native of Orange,
Connecticut born on November 27, 1837. A prominent farmer and seed
merchant. He married Elizabeth M. (Clark) Woodruff and raised four
children. They were:
Frank C. was a graduate of Yale College who
worked in the company with his father. Frank married Julia Alling
and together they had five children.
Robert J., who received the A. B. degree from
Yale in 1896 and graduated from the law school in 1899, was a well known
lawyer of New Haven and served as tax collector, prosecuting attorney of
the court of common pleas and as a member of the legislature. He was
also a prominent Mason and served as second lieutenant in a cavalry
regiment of the Connecticut National Guard.
Mary R., the only
daughter, is a graduate of Wellesley College.
S., graduated from Hillhouse high school of New Haven in 1889. In 1892 he
joined his father and his brother, Frank, at S. D. Woodruff & Sons. Like
his father before him, he preferred farm life and owned three hundred
acres of land in the town of Orange. He began by growing seeds on a small
scale and increased the acreage over the years.
After serving in the Civil War, Mr.
Woodruff, upon his return in 1865, began growing seeds. Selling at both
the wholesale and retail levels, the company that he founded became one of
the largest dealers of garden seeds in the east.
They not only grew standard
varieties of garden vegetables, but also did considerable
breeding work and introduced several varieties. These
included 'Country Gentleman' sweet corn, 'Early Ford Hook' tomatoes and
the 'Ensign Bagley' and 'Admiral Foote' potatoes.
Stiles D. Woodruff led a life of service.
For twenty years he has been a clerk and treasurer of the Orange
Congregational Church and since 1900 was a
deacon. In 1880 he was a member of the first legislature
which met in the new state capitol.
He passed away on April 11, 1906, at the age
of sixty-nine years. His wife died March 8, 1906, at the age of sixty-six
1907 Seed Annual, S. D. Woodruff & Sons.
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