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Here are some Chandler stories and accounts over the years:

Tallow Chandlers

Candles in medieval times were made either of wax for churches or of tallow for general use.  Tallow was obtained from suet, the solid fat of animals such as sheep and cows, and was also used in making soap and lubricants. 

The tallow chandlers, like many other tradesmen, formed their own guild in London.  It was established in or around 1300.  Its corporate Coat of Arms was formally granted in 1456. 

Tallow chandlers also dealt in vinegar, salt, sauces and oils.  Later, the term 'chandler' was used for corn chandlers, and for ships' chandlers who sold most of the fittings and supplies for boats, as well as the candles.  In the 18th and 19th centuries, the term 'chandler' was often used simply to mean a grocer.

The Chandler Name in England

The Chandler name only really spread to southern England - and mainly to London and the southeast with a cluster further west in Gloucestershire.

Chandlers in the 1891 Census
Numbers (000's)
SE England

Walter Chandler of Winchester

Walter Chandler was made a freeman of Winchester in 1506.  A mercer with some interest in wool, he was to figure more prominently in the civic affairs of Winchester than his father had done.  Although Parliamentary returns for Winchester have been lost, other evidence suggests that he had been elected a member there in 1539, 1542, and 1545. 

His position owed something to the support of Stephen Gardiner, the bishop of Winchester at that time.  Chandler prospered sufficiently to be able to acquire a number of properties in and around Winchester.  These included Abbot’s Barton which he purchased in 1540 and it became his seat. 

He was described by one contemporary as a “very crafty fellow.”  In his dealings with Thomas Wriothesley on the Abbot’s Barton estate, he was examined by the Privy Council for slanderous remarks and was ordered to apologize to Wriothesley in Council. 

He died in 1546 and his probate inventory gave indication of his wealth and status: a coat guarded with velvet; a doublet of velvet with satin sleeves and another of satin with velvet sleeves; a scarlet gown faced with foins; an old blue gown faced with foins and furred with coney; a gown of crimson lined with say; a black gown welted with tawny velvet and faced with satin; an old blue gown furred with fox; and a pair of new hose.

John Chandler of Jamestown, Virginia

The earliest known Chandler to settle in America was immigrant John Chandler.  He had traveled with some thirty other settlers aboard the Hercules, the smallest of three ships in the expedition led by Sir Thomas West of Hampshire, Lord Delaware.  They landed at Jamestown on Sunday, June 10, 1610. 

Fragmentary land records in Elizabeth City county suggest that John's elder son, John II, was his son and heir.  However, this male line ended with John IV in 1728. 

The Chandler descent goes via the younger son Robert.  They number in their thousands in the United States, perhaps a majority of them still residing in the South and Southwest of the country.

Colonel Joshua Chandler's Sad End

Colonel Joshua Chandler had been a member of the Connecticut legislature and a relatively wealthy man before joining the Loyalist ranks and departing for Nova Scotia in 1783.  His New Haven property was confiscated and it was said that he was driven into exile and died a broken man. 

In fact he died four years later in 1787 when his ship went down on its way to St. Johns, New Brunswick. W.C Milner in his History of Sackville recounted that his son William, hoping to secure the vessel, fastened a rope around his body and jumped overboard to swim to land.  But he was immediately crushed between the vessel and rocks and was drowned. 

"That night Colonel Chandler, his daughter Elizabeth, and others on the vessel got ashore.  But they were miles from any dwelling and the weather was severe.  It was said that he urged his daughter to leave him and make her way to some house.  But she refused to do so.  He then climbed a high point of the rocks for a look-out.  From that point, being so benumbed with cold, he fell and soon died. The others, after wandering about in the woods, also perished. 

Their bodies were found and carried to St. John and buried in the old burying ground.” 

One of Joshua Chandler’s sons, Samuel, took an active part in the public life of Nova Scotia.  And two of his daughters married into influential New Brunswick families.

Harry Chandler's Family and Early Life

Harry Chandler, born in Landaff, New Hampshire in 1864, could trace his line back to William and Annis Chandler, immigrants to Roxbury, Massachusetts in 1637. 

Many generations later, Ezra Chandler moved his family northwards to what were then the wilderness areas of Vermont and New Hampshire.  They came to Landaff, New Hampshire soon after it was first settled and chose a farm about a mile out of town.  Ezra was the first bricklayer in Landaff.  He died there in 1842 and was buried at the Landaff cemetery at the top of the hill. 

Harry and his family moved from Landaff to Lisbon, a larger town nearby, probably so that Harry could attend the high school there.  Harry later enrolled at Dartmouth College. 

"Soon after his arrival at Dartmouth a classmate dared him to dive into a vat of starch that had frozen over in the first cold snap of the season.  Harry took the dare and soon was in bed with a high fever and a hacking cough.  This was followed by a hemorrhage of the lungs and his withdrawal from college. 

Told by his doctor that only the warm and healthy climate of southern California would save him, he set off on the train for the long trip across the country. 

Arriving tired, dirty, and almost penniless, he spent his first night in California in a cheap hotel and, hesitatingly, set off the next morning to try to decide what course of action he should follow. 

Suddenly he stopped and stared unbelievingly into the display window of a photographer’s shop.  Staring back at him was his own portrait as a child.  As a small child, Chandler was so perfect in his features that he was often photographed as the ideal of an American boy.  The sight wrought a transformation.  It appeared an omen of good.” 

So Harry stayed and prospered.  He started his newspaper career as a clerk in the circulation department of the Los Angeles Times in 1885 at the age of twenty one.

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