This swarthy gent is my Great-Great Grandfather, Wm S Cooper. No, I never met the man, smart-aleck. It looks like if I inherited anything it was his eyes. It certainly wasn’t the ability to grow facial hair. Mr. Bill did quite alright for himself; traveled from England and landed in Philadelphia in the mid-1800’s where he started a brass works company. Quite a fancy one too. Now before you go checking your brass candlesticks that have been passed down through the family for a Cooper insignia, let me be specific about Grampy Bill’s speciality…
Yes….plumbing fixtures. Of all types. In fact I recently found one of the items pictured on the left on an online auction where the starting price was $2,000. They must have been made out of…well…brass. Only the finest of Philadelphia families could afford to shell out the $60 to have a Cooper fixture installed (go ahead…get all your Cooper Crapper jokes out of the way).
Just think, if you are ever visiting friends who live in one of the stately old mansions on the old Main Line in Philadelphia and you use their bathroom, you may be sitting on a Cooper.
I didn’t think about this until just this second. Today is my Grandfather’s birthday, the grandson of the man pictured above. There was some sort of cosmic force compelling me to create this post today (Twilight Zone music here). He would have been 114 today – I think. My sister would know the exact year but I think I’m close. Happy Birthday PopPop. I really miss you.