Green Lawn Abbey

Karb, George J.

George J. Karb
Born 1858
Died 1937
--Voice Which First Said 'Good Old Columbus Town' Is Stilled.- -
George J. Karb, five times mayor of Columbus and beloved by all as its foremost citizen, died in Grant hospital, Saturday, following a long siege of ill health that began in 1924, shortly after his long tenure of public service came to an end.
For the past two weeks Mr. Karb had been critically ill and partial paralysis of his right side developed following a cerebral hemorrhage Thursday. He was 78 years old.
Rev. C. Ronald Garmey of St. Paul's Episcopal church will conduct service at Schoedinger chapel Tuesday at 2 p.m. Interment will be in Greenlawn abbey. Friends may call at Schoedinger's Monday and Tuesday until time of funeral.
--Famous Phrase- -
Born at the corner of Town and High streets, February 15, 1859, Mr. Karb first entered the service of 'Good Old Columbus Town' -- a phrase he himself made famous -- at the age of 25, when he ran for city council at the urgent request of friends, and was elected in 1886. This was followed by a term as police commissioner and in 1892 he was elected mayor, to serve the first of five terms.
For 24 years he was in the drug business, operating his own store at Fourth and Main streets for 14 years and returning there after his second term as mayor was ended. A short time later he established the Central Ohio Oil Co., retaining that interest until 1929.
Mr. Karb remained inactive, insofar as politics was concerned, for seven years and in 1903 he was elected sheriff, the only democrat successful in Franklin county that year. He was re-elected for a second term and because the legislature extended the tenure of that office, he served until 1909.
--Elected Mayor- -
Again in 1911 he was urged to become a candidate for mayor and his election in 1912 marked the beginning of an eight-year tenure in that office.
In every public gathering and civic enterprise, George Karb took the lead and he was in constant demand as a speaker. He won untold numbers of friends and admirers through his eloquence, his personality and his enthusiasm for 'good old Columbus town.'
Several operations since he was stricken with a severe illness in 1924 took their toll and for the past 13 years his physical condition had handicapped him. He made his last public appearance in November, 1936, when the east wing at city hall was dedicated.
Mr. Karb and his wife, Mrs. Kate M. Karb, lived at 1788 Bryden road. She is his only survivor.
Here is the way 'good old Columbus town' will remember George J. Karb, the man it elected mayor five times. The picture was taken Nov. 24, 1936, his last public appearance, on the occasion of the dedication of the east wing at city hall.
George Karb was a familiar figure on the streets of 'good old Columbus town,' and to everyone he was 'mayor,' His voice was rich and sonorous, and no public address system was needed to carry his inspiring words to the thousands who listened to him on the many and varied occasions at which he presided.
His bearing was courtly, and it was only because of ill health that he became inactive after more than a quarter of a century to the city which he loved and which loved him.
Burial Location