Hummason, Joel J.

Pioneer, Clockmaker, War of 1812 Veteran
Born: 1794, Connecticut
Died: May 14, 1866
Burial: Payne's Corners Cemetery, Brookfield Township, Trumbull County, Ohio

Military Service: Hummason served as a private from August 24 to November 11, 1812, in Captain Asa Hutchins' Company, 3rd (Hayes') Regiment, Ohio Militia, during the War of 1812. Capt. Hutchins' company contained many men from Vienna Township, including Hummason's future employer, clockmaker Lambert W. Lewis.[1]

Joel J. Hummason (or Humason) manufactured wooden-work clocks in Vienna Township.

Hummason was the son of Joel and Ann Wheeler Hummason, two of the earliest Connecticut settlers in the Township. He married Thankful Ford (1791-1868) on December 11, 1811.[2]

Hummason worked for another of Vienna's clockmakers in the local clock industry, Lambert W. Lewis, in 1817, before he entered into a partnership with Abel Tyler.

According to historian Rebecca M. Rogers, the location of the Tyler and Hummason clock manufactory is unclear. Hummason owned a water-powered sawmill on Little Yankee Run in the south east corner of Vienna Township close to the Brookfield Township border. Tyler owned property on Warren-Sharon Road at Vienna Center. If located on the Tyler property, this clockmaking concern may have been restricted to assembly rather than shaping the clock parts and works. 
The business ran for 7 months in the year 1818.  Tyler took out a mortgage on Hummason's sawmill site in October, 1825. The business lasted to 1833.[3]

Hummason's career as a clock manufacturer mirrored in many respects those of other Vienna clockmakers. Overextension of credit through mortgages, reduced demand for clocks, and an economic depression in the early 1830s essentially ended the clockmaking "boom" in Vienna and Trumbull County.

Hummason's financial fortunes, tied to his clockmaking ventures, left him destitute. His mother Ann Wheeler Hummason died while applying for pension benefits due her husband Joel Hummason, a veteran of the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783). Joel J. and his brother Isaac are described as "destitute" in the application and were awarded their later father's pension.

Joel Humason Pension Record, Case Files of Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Applications Based on Revolutionary War Service, ca. 1800-ca. 1900, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC. The file is available here: Ann Humason Pension Application.pdf.

Rogers, Rebecca M. Trumbull County Clock Industry, 1812-1825. Dayton, OH : Sterling Graphics, [1991?].

[1] Adjutant General of Ohio, Roster of Ohio Soldiers in the War of 1812 (Columbus, Ohio: Press of the Edward T. Miller Co., 1916).
[2] Fred L. Martin and James Bradley, "A Genealogical History of Vienna," in Vienna, Ohio, "Where We Live and Let Live": Town 4, Range 2 of the Connecticut Western Reserve (Apollo, PA: Closson Press, 1999), pp. 39-40.
[3] Rebecca M. Rogers, Trumbull County Clock Industry, 1812-1825 (Dayton, OH : Sterling Graphics, [1991?]), 23.

Updated dates of clock factory operation contributed by Rebecca Rogers, September 2017.
Shirley Wajda,
Sep 28, 2014, 7:02 PM