century association biographical archive

Earliest Members of the Century Association

View all members

James A. Scrymser

President, South American Telephone Company

Centurion, 1884–1918

Full Name James Alexander Scrymser

Born 18 July 1839 in New York (Manhattan), New York

Died 21 April 1918 in New York (Manhattan), New York

Buried Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York

Proposed by Francis A. Stout and John H. Gourlie

Elected 1 November 1884 at age forty-five

Century Memorial

Devotion to the public welfare has been a notable characteristic of the American business man, and the Century membership has never failed to mark that sense of double responsibility. As long ago as 1865, James A. Scrymser, in projecting and operating the cable communication from the United States to Cuba and the Latin-American republics, anticipated by half a century the commercial necessities which to-day our own government is urgently pointing out as an essential condition for the maintenance of our place as the undisputed financial center of the Western Hemisphere. Like so many other men of large industrial achievement (as the history of this war has taught us) his duties as a loyal and self-sacrificing citizen came before those of an industrial promoter. During his early years he served at the front in the Civil War; in his later life he was a champion of the welfare of the children in the public schools and of the proper regulation of the public charities.

Alexander Dana Noyes
1919 Century Association Yearbook