SEVERANCE, SOLOMON LEWIS (9 April 1812-13 July 1838) was the progenitor of one Cleveland's most prominent families and, also, one of Cleveland's earliest dry-goods merchants. He helped found and served as an officer of both the CLEVELAND ANTI-SLAVERY SOCIETY and the CUYAHOGA COUNTY ANTI-SLAVERY SOCIETY.
Born in Shelburne, MA. to Dr. Robert Bruce and Diana (Long) Severance, Solomon came to Cleveland in 1830 and established himself as a dry-goods merchant, opening a store at No. 57 Superior Street. In 1833, Severance went into a business partnership as Cutter & Severance, doing business at the Brick Corner.
When the Cleveland Anti-Slavery Society was founded as an auxiliary of the Western Reserve Anti-Slavery Society in 1833, Severance served as secretary. He also served as treasurer of the CUYAHOGA COUNTY ANTI-SLAVERY SOCIETY when it was founded on 4 July 1837.
Severance married Mary Helen Long (d. 1902), the daughter of Dr. DAVID LONG, Cleveland's pioneer physician, on 12 Nov. 1833. The Severances had two sons, SOLON LEWIS and LOUIS HENRY SEVERANCE who would shape the social and business interests of Cleveland's future. Severance died of tuberculosis at Red Sulphur Springs, VA., and is buried in ERIE ST. CEMETERY.
Severance Family Papers, WRHS.
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