century association biographical archive

Earliest Members of the Century Association

View all members

Alexander E. Orr


Centurion, 1901–1914

Full Name Alexander Ector Orr

Born 2 June 1831 in Strabane, Tyrone, Northern Ireland

Died 4 June 1914 in New York (Brooklyn), New York

Buried Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York

Proposed by Seth Low and Stuyvesant F. Morris

Elected 4 May 1901 at age sixty-nine

Century Memorial

It were a long task to describe the financial activities of Alexander Ector Orr. Eighty-three years of life, with sixty odd of them devoted heart and strength to work! Add thereto, great financial sense and foresight, untold patience and industry, and a nature that needed no other relaxation than to turn from one business matter to another. It was worth while. This Scotch-Irishman leaves a record of service to the financial and economic world.

When a youth, he visited this country as by accident; saw its possibilities, and resolved to settle here. New York was better than India, for which he had been destined! So he came back, and worked and won his way. We cannot detail the steps of his career, or name the institutions in which he was Director, or indeed President. But it should be said, that our City and State owe much to his integrity and services in the investigation of the Canal Ring, under Governor Tilden, in 1872; also as chairman of the Civil Service Commission in Brooklyn; as the promoter of rapid transit; as President of the Produce Exchange, of the Chamber of Commerce, of here and there a bank, and lastly of the New York Life Insurance Company, when at the age of seventy-five he entered upon the task of rehabilitating its affairs and reputation.

Henry Osborn Taylor
1915 Century Association Yearbook