Thomas H. Frayser, who was an honored citizen and well-known business man of Owensboro, was born in Cumberland County, Virginia, February 9, 1837, and died in Owensboro, Kentucky, December 8, 1894. He received his early training and education in Virginia, and came to Kentucky when he was a young man and was associated for a time with his brother William in the tobacco brokerage. He removed to Calhoun, Kentucky, and from that place to Owensboro, where he was engaged in various enterprises until the time of his death. He was a soldier in the Confederate army under General Mahone, Twelfth Virginia Regiment of the Army of Northern Virginia, and was in a number of engagements, including the battles at Manassas and Fredericksburg. During the last year of his service in the army he was detailed for duty in the commissary department.
During his long residence in Owensboro he as for a time engaged in the tobacco business, and for fourteen years was connected with the wholesale grocery establishment of McJohnson
& Company. He was president of the Owensboro Board of Education for nine years, an office for which he was highly qualified, being a man of superior intelligence, of fine business capacity and having a deep interest in the cause of education. He was elected to this position upon the ground of his peculiar qualifications and not on account of his political affiliations, and he served his constituents faithfully.
He was for twenty years a member of the board of stewards of Settle chapel, Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and his business transactions were characterized by his fidelity to the principles which he professed. He was for twelve years the beloved and honored superintendent of the Sunday school, and in appreciation of his services and as a testimonial of their love for him, the school, since his death, has had his life-size portrait hung in the Sabbath school room.
He was married in Petersburg, Virginia, in 1863, to Sallie Harris, and they had ten children, two of whom died in infancy. Those of his children who survive him are: Frederick Harris, Judith Bransford, Mary Susan, Thomas Hatcher, Sarah Catherine, Jessamine, Giles Harris, and Martha Bransford.
Thomas H. Frayser’s father, William Frayser, was born in Cumberland Coujity, Virginia, in 1807, and died there in 1882. He was a farmer, and a member of the Methodist Church. He married Judith Bransford, a native of the same county, and a daughter of Benjamin Bransford. Their children were: William; Mary, who married Y. N. French; Susan M., who married H. N. Brazey; Virginia, who married William Brozeal; Benjamin, who was killed while serving in the
Confederate army; Robert, who married a Miss Allen of Owensboro; and Thomas H., the subject of this sketch.
Benjamin Bransford (maternal grandfather) was a native of Cumberland County, Virginia, and a very wealthy farmer, whose wife was Lucy Hatcher, of the same county.
Source: Biographical Cyclopedia of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. John M. Gresham Company, Chicago, Philadelphia, 1896.