History of Bucks
County, Pa Volume 3 by William H. Davis
HON. GEORGE LEAR
HON. GEORGE LEAR. Among the self-made men of his day and generation who have achieved eminence and success in the face of adverse circumstances, was Hon. George Lear, of Doylestown, deceased. He was born in Warwick township, Bucks county, February 16, 1818, the son of Robert and Mary (Meloy) Lear. He was reared on a farm, and at the age of thirteen years was thrown entirely upon his own resources. Until the age of nineteen he sought such employment as could be obtained in an agricultural community, and devoted his spare moments to the acquiring of an education. He was for some years a member of the family of the late William Kitchin, Sr., of Solebury, whose sympathy and encouragement to the aspiring youth were freely acknowledged and requited by Mr. Lear in later years.
In 1837 he became a teacher in public schools, and followed this vocation for four years, when he entered a country store and devoted his spare moments to the study of law under the preceptorship of Eleazer T. McDowell, Esq., of Doylestown. He removed to Doylestown in 1844 and entered the office of his preceptor and was admitted to practice at the bar of his native county on November 16, of the same year. In August, 1848, he was appointed deputy attorney general for the county of Bucks, by Hon. James Cooper, the attorney-general of the state, and was recommissioned by Mr. Cooper’s successor, Hon. Cornelius Darrah, and held the position until the office was superseded by the creation of the office of district attorney in 1850. Endowed with more than ordinary intellectual ability, a strong will, a marked gift of oratory, a tremendous force of character and industry, and, above all, of a sturdy common sense, he soon rose to a proud position among his fellows. He was an eloquent speaker and a forceful reasoner, and had great power before a jury. He rarely accepted a case until he was convinced of the justice of the claim of his client, and then threw himself into it with all the force of an indomitable courage and sense of justice. The people of Bucks county will long remember the bold advocate and faithful counselor. He was for many years the recognized leader of the bar. The host of friends who knew him and loved him will likewise remember his genial, honorable and manly traits of character, that made him a pleasant companion and a faithful friend. What he was in the practice of his profession he was, in the world at large, a bold and fearless advocate of right and justice, and earnest in the defense of his principles. In politics he was an ardent Republican from the organization of that party, and stood deservedly high in its councils. He was a member of the constitutional convention of 1872-3, but did not sign his name to or vote for the constitution as adopted by the convention. Though he advocated and helped to sustain all the important measures of reform in the convention, he was convinced that the instrument as adopted contained unwarranted restrictions on the rights and powers of the people. In 1875 he was appointed by Governor Hartranft as attorney general of the state, and filled that position with eminent ability. He was elected president of the Doylestown National Bank, and filled that position until his death. He died at his home in Doylestown, May 23, 1884, and his funeral obsequies were attended by the most prominent men of the state. In January, 1845, he married Sidney White, of Montgomery county, who survives him. They were the parents of three children—Henry, born March 21, 1848; Cordelia, who died in 1903, unmarried; and Mary, the wife of George P. Brock.
Henry Lear, son of George and Sidney, was educated partly in Doylestown and Philadelphia, and graduated at Yale College in the class of 1869. He attended lectures at the University of Pennsylvania, and studied law in the office of his father, and was admitted to the bar September 11, 1871. He is a man of marked ability as a lawyer, and achieved eminence in the practice of his profession. He succeeded his father as president of the Doylestown National Bank in 1884, and held that position for twenty years. He married, June 10, 1875, Louisa Philler Brock, daughter of John J. and Julia (Philler) Brock, of Doylestown. Their children are John B., George, William P., Julia, and Sidney. The family are members of the Protestant Episcopal church.
Text taken from page 385
Davis, William W. H., A. M. History of Bucks County, Pennsylvania [New York-Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1905] Volume III
Transcribed 2002 as part of the Bucks Co., Pa., Early Family Project, www.rootsweb.com/~pabucks/bucksindex.html
Published November 2002 on the Bucks County, Pa., USGenWeb pages at www.rootsweb.com/~pabucks/