Prominent business and civic leader Robert H. "Bob" Caldwell died Monday morning at age 97.
He was at his home of Lookout Mountain with daughters Betsy Dalgliesh and Sherry West by his side. A son, Bobby Caldwell, had died suddenly in 2010.
Mr. Caldwell came from a distinguished East Tennessee family "long-known for its love for people and philanthropy."
He traces back to James Leonidas Caldwell, who was in the hardware business with W.T. Green in Chattanooga. He later founded the Tennessee Stove Works here. James L. Caldwell was born in March of 1861 on the Caldwell farm north of the river. His father, Leonidas M. Caldwell, left to fight for the Confederate Army when he was about 30 years old. However, he never returned from the war and family members never learned what happened to him.
James L. Caldwell on Jan. 3, 1888 married Margaret "Maggie" Julia Hardwick, daughter of Christopher Lafayette Hardwick. James L. Caldwell's children included Lafayette Hardwick Caldwell, who was born in 1897. After studying at the University of Virginia, he headed the Tennessee Stove Works from 1919 until 1962. The Caldwell home was on Lookout Mountain and he served as the mayor of Lookout Mountain, Tn., for eight years. He married Eleanor Williams, one of the daughters of Robert H. Williams. Their children were a daughter, Eleanor (George) Bryan, and sons Hardwick, Bob and Bill.
Bob was married to the late Sherry Stevenson and they had four children, the late Bob Caldwell (Gina), Betsy (Jay) Dalgliesh, Chrissie and Sherry (Dudley) West.