Born in 1843 in Germany, Edward Bushrod Stahlman emigrated to the United States with his family in 1853. He began working to support his family after his father's death and had a distinguished career in the railroad and newspaper businesses. His railroad affiliation was primarily with the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, and at the end of his career, from 1885 to 1890, he served as the railroad's third vice president. His newspaper career began in 1885, when he purchased the Nashville Banner. His first wife was Mollie T. Claiborne, who died in 1915. He second wife, whom he married in 1920, was Sarah Shelton.
Incidentally, the subject changed his name from Friedrick Heinrich Eduard Stahlmann circa 1858 in honor of his benefactor Bushrod W. Foley, according to the affidavit of his brother George W. Stahlman.