Eli M. Converse was born in Brookfield on October 31, 1850. His parents were James, a shoemaker, born in North Brookfield, and Mary, born in Brookfield.. Eli spent his boyhood in Brookfield and married Nancy M. Prouty there on May 1, 1878. Nancy died on October 14, 1883. On December 20, 1887 Eli married a school teacher from Brookfield named Lucy Maria Dunton. They moved to West Brookfield probably the following year. A daughter Elsie was born in 1889 and a son Robert came along in 1891.
Eli was engaged in commerce in West Brookfield, owning and operating a general store in the Wheeler-Conway Block, first with Frank Blodget and then by himself. The business was sold to Charles O. M. Edson in 1914.
Eli served the town of West Brookfield as a selectman and school committeeman. He also served in the Massachusetts Legislature in 1911. He died in his home on School St. on February 24, 1936 after a long illness. His obituary appeared on page four of the Springfield Daily Republican on February 25, 1936.
Sources: A History of West Brookfield :1674 - 1990 by Jeffrey H. Fiske
Obituary of Eli M. Converse; Springfield Daily Republican, Feb. 25, 1936; p.4
Vital records of Brookfield and West Brookfield, MA