Robert B. ThornMary McFarland (McPartland)Richard MullinEllen Egan

Robert J. ThornElla Louise Mullin

John Joseph (Jack) Thorne

f a m i l y
Children with:
Leona Marie Ritter
Mabel E. Pontine

William Thorne
James Thorne
Francis Mary Thorne
Robert Joseph Thorne

Paul Thorne
Marion Thorne
Robert William Thorne
John Joseph (Jack) Thorne
  • Born: Oct 1872, Collingwood, Ontario, Canada
  • Married 28 Apr 1908 to Leona Marie Ritter
  • Married 22 Nov 1899, St. James Church, Bay City, MI, to Mabel E. Pontine
  • Died: 1967
  • Occupation: Electrical Engineer

    pict3.jpg [128x193]
    JJ with sons Robert & Paul
    Helen DeWaele with Leona & JJ
    William, Robert, Ella, & JJ (1890s)
    Robert (1912) with parents Leona & JJ and grandmother Ella
    Michigan Cabin, in the first image Jack is 2nd from left & Robert 2nd from right. Jack is in the middle of the 2nd photo.

    Owned Thorne Electric. Put in power in 20s and 30s in Michigan.

    Newspaper article says he was born in 1871.

    Note: Being that electricity was invented in the 1880s and not widely used until ~1900, Jack Thorne was a pioneer in the field of electricity. He wired a large chunk of Northern Michigan, and apparently even studied under the great Charles Proteus Steinmetz, one of the founders of the General Elec. Co. (GE). He wired most of Bay City, including its city railway and street lights. He formed Thorne Electric Co. in the early 1900s.

    He also was an engineer for the Wheeler Shipyard and supervised the electric work on the first all-steel freighters, and worked at Carrolton Shipard during WWI and Defoe Shipbuilding Co. during WWII.

    Note from John Arthur Thorne (1938):

    The 3 boys (my grandfather John, great uncle Bob and great uncle Will) moved to Michigan in the 1890s. John and Bob were successful pioneer electrical engineers, owning several companies in the Detroit and Bay City areas, including Northern Power Co. (later a major segment of Consumers Power). We're all Thornes now (with the e).

    From Bay County Marriages, 1889-1914, (Book E, P. 60): J.J Thorne was married to Mabel E. Pontine on Nov. 22, 1899 in Bay City. He's listed as 27 year's old; she as 17. J.J. was born in Collingwood, Canada; Mabel in Bay City. His occupation at time was
    electrical engineer. Parents listed as Robert Thorn and Ella Mullins; Mathew Pontine and Eliza Bens. Officiated by Rev. Thomas Rafter at St. James Church. Witnesses were W.J. Thorne and Catherine McInerney, both of Bay City. Found Pontine family in the 1880 Bay City census; the father was a policeman, born in Canada.

    Wait, there's more - a baby! From Bay County birth records (1874-1933), Volume I, p. 214. Marion Thorne, born to J.J. and Mabel Thorne in Bay City on Jan. 24, 1901.

    Wife after Leona's name was Lucille.

    Sandra Thorne Borgon (1942) writes:
    I don't know why he added the e except there was a feeling years ago that the longer the name, the more important you were. This was a very European thing.


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