John J. Macfarlane (R4) Philadelphia County 1883-1890
John J. Macfarlane, born, June 5, 1846, Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania; attended public schools; Central High School, Philadelphia, 1863; officer, Girard College, seven years; principal, Chestnut Hill Grammar School, ten years; insurance business; state Emergency Militia, Civil War, 1862-1863; elected, Republican State Senate, 1882-1889; Librarian and Statiscian, Philadelphia Commercial Museum; married; Died, pneumonia, home, Germantown, Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, January 7, 1930. (i)
Librarian and Statiscian, Philadelphia Commercial Museum, 30 years; museum closed, July 1, 1994
Elected, Pennsylvania State Senate, 4th district, Philadelphia County 1883-1890, member, Congressional Apportionment, Education, Finance, Insurance, Legislative Apportionment Committees.
Macfarlane’s colorful career was made more so during the Philadelphia Bank-Run of 1890. Macfarlane, served, president, American Life Insurance Company that year. A number of associated financial institutions, approached insolvency, due to mismanagement and embezzlement. Macfarlane left Philadelphia for Brazil, 1890, reportedly with a sizable quantity of American Insurance funds. Surrendered 1893; pleaded guilty, Eastern Penitentiary, 1893-1897.
MACFARLANE IN BRAZIL; THE PHILADELPHIA SWINDLER THE GUEST OF A UNITED STATES CONSUL.
PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 16. -- The whereabouts of ex-Senator John J. Macfarlane was discovered today. The fugitive figurehead of the picturesque combination that looted the American Life Insurance Company, the Bank of America, and their allied institutions is living in quiet luxury at Rio Janeiro, Brazil, the attractive centre of a coterie of American citizens and the honored guest of the United States Consul." (ii)
Smull’s Legislative Hand Book, (1888) Cochran, T.B., Biographical Sketches of Senators, page 644, 676-678.
(i) The Pittsburgh Press (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) Wednesday January 8, 1930, Page 4
(ii) New York Times December 17, 1890, Page 1