James R. Pyne
James R. Pyne, the well-known and popular city boiler inspector, of Chicago was born in that city in 1855, a son of James and Mary L. (Green) Pyne. The father took up his residence there as early as 1851, and successfully engaged in the grocery business for many years. He died in that city April 2, 1898, and his wife only survived him about a month, dying on the 18th of May the same year.
Reared in Chicago, our subject began his education in its public school, but later attended college at Valparaiso, Ind., thus acquiring and excellent literary education. He learned the machinist's trade in the shops of J. S. Dunham, and remained in the employ of that gentleman for twelve years, during which time he acquired a thorough knowledge of engines and machinery. His experience upon the lakes commenced about 1871 or 1872, when he shipped at Chicago on the tug Little Giant, of the Dunham line, remaining on her one season, after which he was engineer on the Babcock for the same length of time; then held a similar position on the tug A. Mosher for seven years, and acted in the same capacity on the Cromwell for three years. At the end of that time he accepted the position of chief engineer of the Dunning Institute, of Cook County, but resigned eighteen months later, and for six months was superintendent of the Infirmary at Dunning, being at that place two years in all. As general superintendent he had charge of the entire plant for one year, and in 1894 was chief engineer of the Lake View Water Works, remaining there until appointed city boiler inspector of Chicago in May 1897. He is ably qualified by practical training to fill his present responsible position, and is serving with credit to himself and to the entire satisfaction of all concerned.
Mr. Pyne received his first engineer's license in 1878. He was a prominent member of the National Marine Engineers Association No. 68, until it was abolished, and served as secretary of the same. He is also a leading and influential member of the Cook County Democracy.
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This version of Volume II is based, with permission, on the work of the great volunteers at the Marine Captains Biographies site. To them goes the credit for reorganizing the content into some coherent order. The biographies in the original volume are in essentially random order.
Some of the transcription work was also done by Brendon Baillod, who maintains an excellent guide to Great Lakes Shipwreck Research.