Biography of Charles A. Warfield
Allegheny County, PA Biographies

CHARLES ALEXANDER WARFIELD, of Pittsburg [sic], was born April 27, 1854, in Howard county Maryland, his father and grandfather having both borne the name of Charles Dorsey Warfield. His great grandfather, in honor of whom he was named, was Dr. Charles Alexander Warfield, who is linked in the history of Maryland with one of the most thrilling and romantic episodes in the annals of opposition to the tea tax. The Warfield family was founded in this country by Richard Warfield, who came in 1660 from Berkshire, England, and settled in the province of Maryland. His grandson, Azel Warfield, married Sarah Griffith.

Charles Alexander Warfield, eldest son of Azel and Sarah (Griffith) Warfield, was born December 14, 1751, in Anne Arundel county, Maryland, and it was in his young manhood (being but a year after his marriage) that the incident which has rendered him historically famous occurred. Dn Warfield, who is also remembered as Major Warfield, during the memorable days of October, 1774, called the members of his club around him, and led them, on horseback, from the uplands which now constitute Howard and Montgomery counties through the lowlands of Anne Arundel county and into Annapolis. They rode by day and without disguise, although on their hats was engraved the legend, "Liberty or Death." On arriving at Annapolis they rode to the front of the residence of Anthony Stewart, who was the owner of the brig "Peggy Stewart," and who had paid the tax on the obnoxious tea with which his vessel was laden. Captain Hobbs, who was one of the party, has handed down the following account of Dr. Warfield's actions and words:

Commanding his companions to draw up in line before the house, he addressed Mr. Stewart. in the following words; "You will either go with me and apply the torch to your own vessel, or hang before your own door." His manner, though courteous, conveyed the impression that acceptance of the former proposition would be the safer course, and Dr. Warfield stood beside Mr. Stewart when the latter applied the torch.

Dr. Warfield married Elizabeth, daughter of Major Henry Ridgley, and their children were: Ann, wife of Samuel Thomas; Harry R, attorney at law of Baltimore, Peregrine, Gustavus, Charles Dorsey, Elizabeth, wife of Richard Snowden; and Louisa, who, after the death of Elizabeth, became the second wife of Richard Snowden. Peregrine and Gustavus were physicians.

Charles Dorsey Warfield was born April 4, 1780, in Howard county, Maryland, and was engaged in mercantile pursuits. He married, in January, 1823, Ruth H., born February, 1794, widow of Caleb Dorsey and daughter of Philemon Griffith, colonel of the Maryland Rifles during the war of the Revolution. Mr. and Mrs. Warfield were the parents of the following children: Sarah Ann; Charles Dorsey, of whom later; Alexander; and Philemon Hammond. Charles Dorsey Warfield, the father, died May 30, 1852, and his widow passed away in August, 1854.

Charles Dorsey Warfield, son of Charles Dorsey and Ruth H. Griffith (Dorsey) Dorsey, was born November 9, 1830, in Bushy Park, Howard county, Maryland, and for many years served as school director. He was a staunch Democrat and a member of the Presbyterian church,

Charles Dorsey Warfield married, May 17, 1853, Isabella, born February 21, 1832, daughter of Dr. Gustavus and Mary (Thomas) Warfield, of Longwood, Howard county, Maryland, who Were married in 1810. Dr. Gustavus Warfield died August 8, 1866, in his eighty fourth year, and his wife, who was born March 15, 1793, died January 18, 1884. Mr. and Mrs. Warfield were the parents of eight children: Charles Alexander, of whom later; Gustavus, born December 13, 1855; Mary Emma, born September 27, 1857; Henry Ridgley, born September 12, 1859, died May 19, 1865; Eugenia Grey, born Augtist 4, 1861, died September 30, 1864; Peregrine, born January 16, 1864; Harry Ridgley, born November 8, 1869; and Arthur, born October 3, 1871. Mr. Warfield, the father, died August 19, 1896, and the death of Mrs. Warfield occurred October 9, 1904.

Charles Alexander Warfield, son of Charles Dorsey and Isabella (Warfield) Warfield, received his education in the public schools of his native county and at public school No. 15, Baltimore. He was engaged in the rolling mill industry until 1890, being successively employed in the mill of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Company at Cumberland, in the Abbott Iron Works, Baltimore, and in the National Rolling Mill, McKeesport. Since 1890 he has been connected with the Electric Hotel, of which he is now the owner and manager.

He belongs to the Sons of the Revolution, the I. O. O. F., the Knights of Pythias, the Homeless Twenty six and the Behevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and in politics is a Democrat. He is a member of the Presbyterian church.

Mr. Warfield married, April 26, 1893. Minerva C. Borlin, and they are the parents of one daughter; Caroline Isabella, born December 3, 1894.

Mrs. Warfield is a daughter of James and Hannah Borlin, of Greensburg. James Borlin was born January 19, 1820, and in early life was a tanner and a dealer in live stock, taking droves of horses and cattle to the eastern markets before the railroads which now facilitate their transportation were built. He was proprietor of hotels in Greensburg, Chicago, McKeesport and Pittsbnrg [sic]. In 1877 he was elected sheriff of Westmoreland county. His death occurred September 26, 1899.

A Century and a half of
Pittsburg and her people.
By: John Newton Boucher
The Lewis Publishing Company

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