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OLMSTED, GEORGE HENRY

OLMSTED, GEORGE HENRY

OLMSTED, GEORGE HENRY (21 Sept. 1843-8 April 1925), a leading representative of insurance interests and founder of two major agencies in Cleveland, was born on a farm near La Grange, Ohio, the son of Jonathan and Harriet (Sheldon) Olmsted. After attending local public schools and Elyria High School, he graduated from Eastman's Business College at Poughkeepsie, New York, and taught school for 3 years. He was a traveling salesman in Michigan and Wisconsin before coming to Cleveland in 1867. Olmsted entered the insurance business, successfully representing Atlantic Mutual life and 8 years later was made superintendent of its agencies in the United States and Canada. He left the firm in 1879 to represent National Life Insurance Co. of Vermont in Ohio and Indiana, an affiliation for the duration of his business career. In the early 1880s he and S.S. Coe became partners in an insurance agency which evolved into the George H. Olmsted & Co. in 1889. The general insurance agency specialized in writing fire insurance for some of the largest insurers in the country. At the same time, George and his brother Oscar organized Olmsted Brothers & Co., representing National Life Insurance of Vermont in Ohio and Indiana. In Cleveland's highly competitive insurance business, Olmsted Brothers had doubled their business by 1909. In recognition of George Olmsted's contribution to National Life, he was elected a director of the company.

Olmsted married Ella L. Kelley 24 Oct. 1872 in Saybrook, Ohio. They had 2 children, Howard and Grace (Mrs. Alexander P. Grigor). He died in Cleveland and was buried at LAKE VIEW CEMETERY.