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George W. Backofen


Was Well Known in Homeopathic, Publishing and Fraternal
Circles In This City

George W. Backofen, 67 years old, a former well-known business man of
this city, died suddenly yesterday afternoon about 1 o'clock in R.
Siddle & Sons' jewelry store, Fifth avenue, near Wood street.  While
paying Mr. Siedle a friendly call, Mr. Backofen suddenly became faint
and started for the door, where he fell.  He was carried back into the
store and a physician was summoned, but Mr. Backofen expired before the
doctor arrived.  His remains were removed to his late home, 30 Stevenson
street.  Mr. Backofen suffered a stroke of apoplexy about eight years
ago, but apparently recovered from the attack.  Sunday evening he spent
with his family, and was in the best of spirits, and was believed to be
enjoying good health.  His sudden death was a great shock to his family
and many friends.

George W. Backofen was a son of John George and Mrs. Susanne Backofen,
and was born in Liberty avenue, near Market street, on September 17,
1830.  His grandfather was a prominent German-American and a pioneer in
this section.  Mr Backofen's father became prominent in Homeopathic
medical circles in this city, and was the first man to bring Homeopathic
medicines to Pittsburgh.  He brought the medicines here from Nuernberg,
Bavaria, and with is son established the first Homeopathic drug store in
this city, locating at 613 Smithfield street.

After being engaged in the drug business for some years, Mr. Backofen
and his father engaged in the printing business on Smithfield street and
later established a stationary and book store at the same location.  The
store was conducted by the deceased from 1871 to 1886.  Since the latter
date Mr. Backofen had been connected with various publishing houses as
an advertising solicitor.

For years he was librarian at the Homeopathic hospital in this city, and
held the position at the time of his death.  He was a member of the
First German Evangelical Protestant church, Smithfield street and Sixth
avenue; of Solomon lodge, ?31 F. and A.M.; of Shiloh chapter, 257
R.A.M.; and of the Masonic veterans.  Funeral services will be held at
his late home tomorrow afternoon at 3 o'clock and interment will be mad
in Homewood cemetery.  Mr. Backofen is survived by his widow, Mrs.
Josephine Roth Backofen, two sons, Julius and Edward Backofen, and one
daughter, Miss Bertha Backofen.
(Source: Pittsburgh Post Gazette January 5, 1904)
(Contributor: Dave Kraska,

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