Albion Interactive History / People / Samuel Irwin

Albion Interactive History

Albion Interactive History / People

Samuel V. Irwin, 1823
    Died February 13, 1890

Irwin was born in New York state in 1823 and came to Albion in the 1850s. Irwinleft the furniture businesses to start a private banking firm, Mayhew &Irwin. It was on this location that the National Exchange Bank of Albion beganoperation on January 1, 1866, when the earlier bank was dissolved.

Irwin owned considerable land in the south part of the city, and lived in alarge brick home on the corner of S. Superior and IrwinAvenue. The house isstill standing today, 103 Irwin Avenue. Irwin operated a fruit tree farm, andsold thousands of pear and apple trees to customers in the area. Irwin also soldfire insurance for the Home Insurance Company of New York and for the PhoenixInsurance Company of Hartford, Connecticut.

Irwin was active in community affairs. He served on the first board oftrustees for the new Union Schools of Albion, and was appointed by the governorof Michigan to the board of Albion College in 1866. He was also an officer ofthe Albion Fair Ground Association, and a member ofSt. James Episcopal Church.Irwin was one of the original stockholders of the Albion Malleable Iron Works in1889.

A sign of his popularity was when Eugene D. Comstock and twelve other Albionresidents successfully petitioned the Village Council to change the name ofHomer Road to Irwin Avenue. His death which occurred suddenly on February 13,1890, was a shock to the city. Burial was in RiversideCemetery. His son FrankL. Irwin went on to serve as Albion’s postmaster. Irwin’s last know descendant,his only granddaughter – Genevieve Irwin Fisher Gunnison, died in Jackson,Michigan in 1972.

Source: Frank Passic. Albion’s Banks and Bankers. Albion, Michigan:Albion Civic Foundation. 1985.

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