C. Edward
Swope


 

CHIRISTIAN EDWARD SWOPE was appointed as an extra man with the Hook & Ladder Company of the Camden Fire Department on April 5, 1882, replacing William C. Lee. He was one of the many new men brought into the Camden Fire Department by incoming Chief Daniel A. Carter. He was replaced two years later by William H. Doughten. Christian Edxward Swope generally was known about town as Edward Swope.

The family name of Swope is a matter of question. The family appears in the 1850, 1860, and 1880 Census as Swope, and in the 1870 Census as Schwab, and in Fire Department records as Schwaab, Schaub, and Swope. That these are the same people is proven when records other than the Census yields both spellings for the same addresses, ages, occupations and first names at the same times.    

Christian Edward Swope was born in New Jersey in around 1848. His parents were German-born Ignatius Swope and his wife Maria (also recorded as Anna Maria). They Swopes had lived in Philadelphia, before moving to Camden's South Ward. The 1850 Census shows German-born Ignatius Schwaab (or, in this Census, Swope) and his wife Maria living in Camden's South Ward. Also at home were the following children, Joseph, 15; William H., 12; Mary A., 10; Elizabeth, 7; John, 3; Christian Edward., 2; and Mary C., a newborn. Ignatious Schwaab died on April 2, 1857.

When the 1860 Census was enumerated oldest son Joseph had married, moved out, and started a family. Daughter Elizabeth had also wed, and was living with her husband, John Olden. Anna Maria Schaub (or Swope) worked as a washerwoman to support five sons, William, 21; John, 14; C. Edward, 10; Andrew, 8; and George, 3. It should be noted that in the hand-written censuses of the 19th century, variations in ages were not at all uncommon, and also that the censuses were not always taken in the same month of the year from decade to decade. In 1860 older brother William H. Schwaab (the spelling that he used) worked as a laborer. Boarding with the family was son-in-law William Gordon, married to Mary Schwaab, and their baby, also named William. 

When the census was taken in 1870 William H. Schwaab was living at in Camden's South Ward with his wife Amanda at the home of his widowed mother Maria Schwaab. Also living there were his brothers Andrew, John, and George Schwaab and Anna Schwaab, his daughter. By the December of 1871 the Schwaab family was living at 329 Cherry Street in South Camden. Brother George was then using the name George Schaub.

Older brother William had served with the Union Army and also appears to have been a volunteer fireman in Camden during the late 1860s. William H. Schwaab was appointed as an extra man with Engine Company 1 on December of of 1871. He served until April of 1876, when he was not re-appointed, and was replaced by William Guthridge. Brother George Schaub was appointed to the Camden Fire Department as an extra man on April 8, 1876, and served for one year. He was working as a laborer at the time he was appointed. Fire Department records state that he was living on Cherry Street, below Fourth, when he was appointed most likely at 329 Cherry Street, which was the family home for many years.

It appears that George Schaub passed away in the late spring or summer of 1877. His brother, William H. Schwaab, who lived at 329 Cherry Street, named his son, born in August of 1877. 

The third brother to become a member of the Camden Fire Department after George Schaub and William H. Schwaab is the subject of this sketch, brother C. Edward, who often went by the name of Edward Swope. As stated above, he served as a member of the Camden Fire Department for two years, beginning April 21, 1882 with the Hook and Ladder Company

The 1878-1879 City Directory shows Edward Swope, still using the name Edward Schwaab, at 329 Cherry Street in South Camden, living with his mother and brother William H. Schwaab. He was the working as an iron moulder, and remained in this trade throughout his time with the Fire Department. He was still living at 329 Cherry Street as late as 1885, and was still listed in City Directories as Schwaab, even though he had used Swope when working for the Fire Department.

The 1887-1888 City Directory lists him as Edward Schwaab, iron moulder, at 212 Pine Street. The 1888-1889 edition shows him as Edward Swope, iron moulder at the John H. Dialogue shipyard, living at 704 South 2nd Street. The 1890-1891 edition shows him living at South 3rd Street and Spruce Streets. The 1894-1895 Directory lists him as Edward Schwaab, living with his brother Andrew at 913 South 4th Street, still working as an iron moulder.

The 1896 and 1897 Camden City Directories both show that Edward Swope was working as an iron moulder and was boarding at 922 South 3rd Street, the saloon owned by John H. Carroll. By 1898 he had stopped working as an iron moulder and had gone to work as a bartender for John H. Carroll. He was still living at 922 South 3rd Street and working as a bartender when the Census was taken in 1900.

Edward Swope does not appear in the 1906 Camden City Directory. An "E" Swope does appear in the 1910 Census living at 330 Atlantic Avenue and working as a bartender, and Edward Schwaab does appear at that address in the 1910 Camden City Directory as an iron moulder. He does not appear in the 1914 or 1918-1919 City Directories.

Camden Fire Department records also list a Charles Swope, a stone cutter from Camden's North Ward, who served as an extra man with Engine Company 2 for 1 year, beginning April 8, 1876, who does not appear to be related to the Scwaab-Schaub-Swope brothers. 


Philadelphia Inquirer * April 7, 1882

G. Rudolph Tenner
James McCracken
Daniel Bromley - John S. Kelly
Michael McCaffery
James H. Brown
Thomas McKenna
James Shinn - Smith Moore
William Irelan
William Bassett
John Hill - James Read
Robert Miller - William Marsh
George Moffett - John J. Logan
Isaac M. Shreve - Samuel Welsh
Lewis Ferrell - Logan Bates
Isaac Collings - Harry Miles
John W. Elliott - William Turner
Charles Holl - John J. Hibbs
John Seybold - James H. McCann
Edward Swope - William Suders



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