Henry Dodge was a native of Toledo, born on 27 December 1871. His parents, Frederick B. and Caroline (Perkins) Dodge, came to Toledo in 1861 when Henry's father became the principal of the first Toledo high school. His father later moved into the law profession. Henry's father died in 1893 and his mother died in 1911.
Henry was one of five children. He was schooled at the High School of Toledo and graduated in 1889. He then attended the University of Michigan where he specialized in electrical engineering, graduating in 1893. Once he had finished his education he returned to Toledo where he joined the engineering department of the Toledo White Lime Company. He eventually left this job to work in the engineering department of the Ohio Electric Car Company, where he stayed as general manager until 1915.
In 1915, Henry started his own business. He was president of the H.P. Dodge Engineering Company and the inventor of a number of electrical devices which he later patented. The Dodge Engineering Company was an immediate success in the manufacture of battery acid and electric batteries for cars. Henry was involved in the development of some important innovations, including the "Dodge Process" for hydrating lime which helped revolutionize the quick lime industry. He also invented a new process to manufacture storage battery plates which claimed to improve the life of the plate as well as lowering the cost.
Henry had a wide variety of business and social interests. He was the director of the Walding, Kinnan and Marvin Company of wholesale drugs. He was involved in the social clubs of the city. He was a member of the Toledo Yacht Club, the Toledo Commerce Club, the Maumee River Yacht Club, the Toledo Tennis and Toledo Country Clubs, as well as the American Institute of Electrical Engineers.
On September 25, 1896, Henry married Gertrude Marvin, the daughter of Henry Marvin who owned a Toledo druggist company. They had two children, Henry Marvin Dodge and Charleton M. Dodge (who later married a Baumgardner). Henry P. Dodge died on June 17, 1943 and is buried in Section 148A, Lot 42 at Woodlawn Cemetery.[John M. Killits, ed., Toledo and Lucas County, Ohio 1823-1923, vol. 3. (S.J. Clarke Publishing Company: Chicago & Toledo, 1923), 540-41. Killits was the only source found for Henry P. Dodge leaving 20 years unaccounted for in his life.]
Henry Dodge's grave
(Photography of Woodlawn Cemetery by Josef Schneider.)