Biography of Frederick
summary of my search of my great grandfather for more than a
Frederick Eugene Coyne, born around September
27, 1860 in East Orange (Essex County) to James
and Martha SNOW Coyne, their third child. Little is known
of his childhood. I do know when he was 5, he accompanied his
older brother George to the train station to pick up their father,
who was returning after being discharged from the Civil War.
He had no memory of his father and had no idea what he would
Frederick, who was known as FE, first saw Chicago
in 1879 on his way out west to find his fortune. Unsuccessful,
he was on his way back home to New Jersey when he decided to
stop in Chicago. He stayed there for a time, touring the city
and was in awe of the hustle and bustle of the wondrous city.
He returned to East Orange and worked for a couple more years
before deciding he was going back to Chicago.
In 1883, he obtained his first job at Fulton
Markets (a meat and vegetable market), with proprietor John
Wilson, on the corner of Throop and Madison Streets, and worked
there for 2 months. His next job was with Z C Peck of N Franklin
St (the North Side), who was a milk and dairy wholesaler. He
worked for him for 3 months. He then learned the wholesale bakery
business through baker E Peters on N Clark St.
I am not sure when he met bride-to-be Pauline
Niehaus, but he proposed to her on New Year's Day 1886,
during a performance of "The Mikada". They were married
May 11, 1886. In the same year, he was running a restaurant,
while living in the flat above, expecting their first child,
Jeanette. This dwelling was around the corner from the courthouse
and jail, and might have been the bakery and lunchroom he started
on State Street.
By 1887, he purchased the old Dennet Restaurant
on Madison near La Salle, opposite the Hotel La Salle. The first
club he joined in Chicago was the Sunset Club which met in the
Grand Pacific Hotel for a 6 pm dinner every other Thursday.
Another club he belonged to was the Forty Club. He was President
of the 12th Ward Republican Club. Senator
William Mason and FE were long time friends since 1887.
Some time between 1887 and 1888, he sold the N State restaurant
to buy a house on Warren Ave, on the west side. In 1888, acting
as a consultant, he went to Washington to assist someone starting
their own lunchroom visit. While there, he decide to go to Jersey
City to visit his mother, 3 brothers
and a sister. He also went to East Orange to visit his old home.
This is the same year his father
disappeared. His father James visited him in Chicago from 1883
- 1888 and disappeared shortly after that. He was last seen
in New Jersey. It's possible that FE visited his family to see
how they were doing because of this situation.
In 1889, son Frederick Eugene
Coyne, Jr was born. He met Jane Addams, shortly after she
founded Hull House, while on the Daily News lecture staff.
From 1897 - 1901, he was the collector of Internal
Revenue, appointed by President McKinley. In 1901, talks of
candidacy for mayor and postmaster were all over the papers,
mostly in political cartoons - although I have not been able
to find evidence of this, thus far. They bought a summer home
in Lake Beulah, Wisconsin, where they were at the time of President
McKinley's assassination on September 6, 1901. He was always
said to have been a staunch Republican, and very active in politics.
From 1901 - 1905, he was Postmaster of Chicago
- by appointment of Presidents Mckinley and Theodore Roosevelt.
He went to New York with his wife and sister Ann, though I am
not sure why, might have been just a vacation.
Other children born were Edna, Mason
(born June 6, 1897), Richard, and Pauline (in 1904). All of
the children attended Calhoun School in Chicago, with principal
The end of the World War found FE in Camp Beauragard
in Louisiana as an Assistant Camp Quartermaster. He had transferred
from Camp Meiggs, DC. He was in Walter Reid Hospital for fractured
ribs. He was in the hospital for 28 days when he developed Pneumonia.
He was transferred to Louisiana the day after his hospital discharge.
Sons, Fred and Mason were stationed in France at this time.
Later he became Camp Commander. succeeding Major McConnell.
He was discharged October 30, 1919 and promptly joined the Officers
Reserve Corps. His last commission was for 5 years in March
1940, as Captain, Inactive, under Section 37, National Defense
While in Louisiana he was a member of the Thibodeaux
Presbyterian Church, a local agent for Mutual Life Insurance
Company in LaFouche Parish, under a Mr Ballard. He lived in
Frederick Eugene Coyne died at the age of 88
on November 24, 1948 - 10 days after wife Pauline.
At the time of writing this, cause of death of either Fred or
Pauline is unknown. Pauline, however, died at home. They were
residing at 4857 N Talman Ave in Chicago. He was pre-deceased
by daughters Pauline and Jeanette,
brothers Theodore, Robert and George and sisters Jane (Jenny)
Middleton, Helen Ewald and Anna. Surviving children were Frederick,
Jr, Edna Vance, Mason and
Richard. Fred's surviving siblings
were Ernest and Will.
pre-deceased by sister Margaret Schmidt and surviving siblings
were Joseph B Niehaus and Anna Mason.