LENOX, the north-eastern town of the county, is bounded on the north by Oneida county, from which it is separated by the Oneida lake and creek, on the east by Oneida county and the town of Stockbridge, on the south by Stockbridge and Smithfield, on the west by Sullivan. Its area, is 49,568 acres. It was formed from Sullivan March 3, 1809, and at that time contained 54,500 acres. The south-eastem corner was taken off in 1836 to help form Stockbridge.
Except in the southern portion the surface is level and swampy along the Sullivan line, but toward the north dry and gravelly. The drainage is into Oneida lake through the basins of the Oneida and the Cowassalon creeks. These streams abound in trout, especially the Oneida, and in the lake are found bass, pike, pickerel, a few salmon and many other of the smaller varieties of northern fish.
The minerals are gypsum, iron (in very small quantity,) sulphur in solution and salt.
The soil is particularly adapted for wheat growing, and Lenox produces better crops of wheat than any other town of the county. The land was assessed in 1823 at $11.75 per acre and three years later at $12.50. In 1880 good farms are worth from $75 to $125 per acre. In 1830 the assessed valuation of real and personal property was $622,645; in 1860 it was $2,138,739; in 1875 it was $4,221,470.
The population of Lenox for the year 1840 was 5,440, and at the present date, 1880, the latest returns give the number as 10,256.
The Onondaga salt marsh out-crops at Canastota, and in 1818 a company began boring for salt, but failing to obtain a brine of sufficient strength to make the enterprise at all remunerative, gave up the attempt. In 1844 another attempt was followed by a similar failure, yet in 1855 another company was formed with a capital of $100,000, and experimented with the same unsuccessful result. In August of 1863 still another company took the matter in hand with a capital of $25,000, to which the State added $5,000. They shared the fate of their predecessors, and the project of boring successfully for salt in the vicinity has been finally abandoned as impracticable.
SCHOOLS.---There are twenty-eight districts in the town and the number of teachers employed in 1880 was about fifty. The report of that year shows an appropriation of $5,663.16, by the commissioners, of which $95.62 was for libraries, and the balance for teachers' salaries. The number of children of school age is reported to be 2,706. The report of commissioners Nathaniel Hall, Edward Lewis and Samuel Geddes for 1820 shows $295.83 allowed this town and the number of children taught, 837. In 1831 the amount of $262.53 was received from the public school fund.
The early records of the town were lost in the destructive fires at Canastota in 1873, thus rendering a complete list of its earlier officers impossible. From 1839 they have been as follows:---
|1848-49.||J. N. Whitman.|
|1850-51.||N. S. Cady.|
|1854.||E. R. White.|
|1855.||John Montrose.||Edward Norton.|
|1856.||Duncan McDougall.||D. E. Haskell.|
|1857.||Sanford P. Chapman.||Dennis Hardin.|
|1858.||Ralph H. Avery.||D. E. Haskell.|
|1860.||do.||L. B. Kern.|
|1861.||R H. Avery.||do.|
|1862.||D. W. C. Stevens.||do.|
|1864.||J. A. Bennett.||do.|
|1868-69.||do.||James S. Stewart.|
|1870.||George B. Cady.||do.|
|1872.||G. B. Cady.||do.|
|1875.||Fred C. Fisk.||do.|
|1876.||B. F. Chapman.||do.|
|1877.||H. L. Rockwell.||do.|
|1878.||Walter E. Northrup.||do.|
|1879.||do.||Arthur A. Foote.|
The present list of the officers of the town of Lenox for the year 1880-81 was kindly furnished by S. C. Waterman:---
Town Clerk---Stephen C. Waterman.
District No. 2---John E. Ostrander.
District No. 3---George W. Chapman.
District No. 4---William T. Northrup.
District No. 5---Alfred D. Kennedy.
Assessors---Edward Bulger, Timothy G. Near, Abraham Tuttle.
Commissioner of Highways---William Ure.
Overseers of the Poor:---
Districts No. 2 and 5---Hugh McCosker.
District No. 4---Edward A. Haines.
Constables---Barnes Davis, M. E. Rowley, Charles W. Reynolds, George T. Cook and George Wilcox.
Collector---Jefferson C. New.
Inspectors of Election:---
District No. 1---T. P. Chapman, F, E. Reed, Wm. W. Steadman.
District No. 2---A. P. Walrath, Seth D. Baldwin, P. D. Cheeney.
District No. 3---A, W. Palmer, E. O. Corigan, A, W. Watson.
District No. 4---F. Lamb, J. New, W. H. Britt.
District No. 5---C. E. Remeck, John Seeley, E. T. Dean.
District No. 6---J. Phillips, J. S. Ward, M. Harrington.
Town Auditors---Abi A. Phipps, Edward R. White, Noah B, Kent.
Sealer of Weights and Measures-John Flager.
Game Constable---Peter Lewis.
Excise Commissioners---W. A. Stone, Abraham Tuttle, William L. Chapman.
The early settlements of the town were made almost entirely by the descendants of the early Dutch settlers along the productive valley of the Mohawk. As early as 1790 we find them beginning their migrations in this direction through Lenox to the fertile, lands of Sullivan to which their attention had been called while passing through it as the prisoners of Sir John Johnson, taken by him in his memorable campaign in conjunction with John Brant down the Mohawk valley in 1780. It was not till 1792, however, that the first ones among them settled in Lenox---the first white settlers in the town. In that year Conrad Klock and his sons Joseph, John and Conrad settled on the Cowassalon at the place now called Clockville which was named in honor of him. In this vicinity, also, were located several others of the early settlers who came in soon after, many of whose names are familiar to the present generation through those of their descendants who still live here. The Snyders, Moots, Forbes, Tuttles, Buyeas, Kilts, Betsingers and others were among them and gave character to the settlements, and by their industry conquered for themselves comfortable homes from the early wilderness.
About the beginning of the present century Myndert Wemple settled at the place now called Wampsville and opened a tavern which he continued for several years. The hotel used to stand on the Seneca turnpike and was called the Blossom Hotel, and enjoyed an enviable reputation among the many passengers over the turnpike for the manner in which it was kept. The building has been moved to a few rods north of the turnpike and is at present occupied by Ed. Suits, who still keeps it as a hotel, and who has kept it some twenty years. Wm. Spencer was also an early hotel keeper here, and when the postoffice was established in 1824 was appointed post-master.
Another prominent settler at this time---1800---was Angel DeFerriere, who was born at Niort, France, June 8, 1769. In 1793 he emigrated to America and making the acquaintance of Col. John Lincklaen came with him to Cazenovia. While there he made the acquaintance of Polly Dennie, the only daughter of Louis Dennie, then living at Canaseraga, whom he married a short time after. She was born in March, 1774. He was a very wealthy man and withal public spirited, and did a great deal for the advancement of the little community wherein he lived. He died Sept. 17, 1832, and his wife, March, 1853. The old homestead may be seen just east of the Cowassalon on the Seneca turnpike. The creek at this place is spanned by a substantial stone bridge which contains a stone bearing the following inscription:---
The county to the south of Oneida Lake was somewhat tardy of settlement and it was not until 1807 that a Col. Caldwell settled therein.
In 1808 quite a number of others came in and it was not long before it had its proportionate number of new-comers.
In the neighborhood of Beach ridge were the Northrops, Deacon Stephen, Sr., and his son Stephen, Jr. David Northrop was also here at an early day.
William E. Fiske was born in Massachusetts in 1796, a veteran of the war of 1812, having lost heavily in business, came on foot to Lenox in 1822 and located on Quality Hill. In 1826 he removed to Canastota and built a store in Main street for general merchandise. From the plentiful forests surrounding he manufactured potash on a large scale. He bought and repaired the house which his son Fred now occupies, and spent the remainder of his life in it. In Nov., 1829, he was elected justice of the Peace, and held the position until February, 1834, when he resigned. In 1828 he was appointed by Lieutenant-Governor Pilcher as Inspector General, and resigned in 1859. He was elected to the presidency of the Canastota Bank in 1858, and the next year took the position of cashier which he held one year, after which he opened a private bank in company with his son Fred, who carried on the business alone until the establishment of the Canastota Knife Factory, when he retired from the business.
Oneida, one of the most thriving villages of the county, is situated on the Oneida creek, and also on the line of the N. Y. C. & Hudson River Railroad. The first settlement was made in 1818, and grew but slowly from a little hamlet into a community of some 116 voters. In the year 1839 a new impetus was given the growth of the place by the completion of the Syracuse & Utica R. R. from Utica to Syracuse, which was formally opened the 4th of July of that year in the midst of the most joyful excitement.
Mr. Sands Higinbotham, who had acquired nearly all the land on which the village is situated by purchases in 1829 and 1830, and earlier appreciating the value of a railroad traffic, offered the company free right of way across his property on condition that a station be erected thereon for Oneida Castle, and that every train be stopped and held there ten minutes for the refreshment of passengers. The terms were cheerfully accepted by the company and the station was called Oneida Depot. In the mean time Mr. Higinbotham prepared to reap the harvest which his contract had sown by erecting a hotel or "eating-house." In this he was assisted by Ira Hitchcock. But Mr. Higinbotham was not the earliest resident of Oneida. As in the case of Peterboro and its owner, Mr. Higinbotham sent his man before him to make a clearing. This man was Henry Dygert, who came over from Vernon in 1832 and built the second frame house, the same now owned by Mr. Kenyon. Previous to this, Peter Dygert and Abram Phillips had located and built log houses. Isaac Morris found them when he, in 1828, arrived and built a house of logs. Mr. Higinbotham himself arrived in 1834 with his family, and thereupon settlement was stimulated by his liberal offers of assistance to new comers. But the country was far from being attractive---a dead level of cedar swamp. The canal feeder was constructed in 1835, and this brought many men into the region for a time. Mr. Higinbotham siezed the opportunity to make permanent citizens of them by offering lots on low terms and advancing lumber from his mill in Vernon for their buildings. A Mr. Breese, living at Skenandoah, father of Samuel Breese, loaned a great deal of money for the same purpose, taking mortgages on the property for security.
For a number of years the new settlement was without a store and all the trading was done at Oneida Castle, where also the children were sent to school. The first store was probably that of Stoddard & Sype, a small place for traffic, opened about 1837. Nearly the same time Lyman Morse opened a small general store. At that time ordinary labor was paid for at the rate of fifty cents a day; wood was cut for twenty-five cents a cord. The sight of money was very rare. The second frame house was built on the site of the Coe House, by Charles B. Stewart, and was known for many years as the "pink house."
MERCHANTS.---The first store of importance was established in 1844 by S. H. Goodwin & Co. in a building erected by themselves. This was destroyed by fire in 1862, after which the fine brick block at present on the site was erected. L. H. Goodwin &
Sons is the present firm, who deal in dry goods exclusively.
Ambrose Hill commenced the grocery business in Oneida. in 1850, having removed from Canastota where he had been since 1830, doing a large business on the bank of the canal. He obtained his stock from the merchant boats which in those days carried supplies for the retailers and corresponded to the wholesale houses of the present time. Mr. Hill and his son still continue the business successfully, notwithstanding he says that more profit could be made on a capital of $500 in those days than $1,000 will yield now. Mr. Hill entered the town in 1819 with his father, who kept a public house in Wampsville. He is perhaps the oldest merchant at present doing business in Madison county, There are still several of the older merchants in business, among whom we find S. & E. Kenyon, C. A. & D. H. Walrath, and S. Chapin & Son. The stores of Oneida are well filled and after the style of the stores of the metropolis.
POSTMASTERS.---The post-office was established at Oneida in 1841, and Erasmus Stone, proprietor of the Railroad House, was appointed first Postmaster. He came in 1841 from Salina. He was born in Homer, Cortland county, in 1800. The office was kept in the bar room and Mr. Stone on going out on errands was in the habit of putting the day's mail in his hat to be distributed as he might happen to meet the owners of letters. In this wise he possibly won the distinction of being the first free delivery postman in the Union. He held the office until 1845; died in Oneida, Nov. 14, 1878. His widow and three children are still living in the village. He was succeeded by Asa Smith, who in turn was followed by I. N. Messinger, and Ephraim Beck. The present postmaster, John Crawford was appointed June 28, 1864, and took possession July 16th, of that year. The receipts for the first full quarter of his term, from October 1st to December 31st, was $916.01. The receipts for quarter ending March 31st, 1880, were $2,072.46.
PHYSICIANS.---The first physician in Oneida was Earl Loomis, who was graduated from Yale. Dr. Loomis was an old-school physician, a modest, unassuming gentleman and a christian; he moved to Oneida in 1842, and died after many years of successful practice. In 1842, Lewis Joslyn began practice in the village, and the next year Benjamin Palmer joined them. After these pioneers came George Beardsley, Willard R. Fitch, I. W. Fitch, A. G. Purdy, Edward Loomis, Ogden Randall, Stillman Spooner and Edwin Perkins. At present quite a large number of resident physicians are to be found in Oneida. Drs. A. E. and J. T. Wallace, H. W. Carpenter, R. H. Gray, C. H. Perry, M. Cavana, Theodore Meade, J. T. Huntley, F. L. Cherry, M. M. Ladd, and Mrs. M. H. Harter. Among the dentists are A. E. Cherry, L. H. Rice and C. A. Smith.
LAWYERS.---In l848 I. M. Messenger, a native of Smithfield, a graduate of Hamilton college in 1839, opened a law office and has remained ever since. He is at this day the oldest resident lawyer. Mr. Carskadden and Spencer H. Stafford are also lawyers of long service. The members of the bar in this village are many for a place of its size. At this date the following comprise the list:---
M. J. Shoecraft, James L. Bennett, J. F. Tuttle, E. J. Brown, A. D. Kennedy, J. C. Kennedy, James B. Jenkins, B. F. Chapman, Stephen Chapman, T. A. Devereaux, J. A. Ferry, Robert J. Fish, Solon Gregg, J. E. Ostrander, H. S. Rockwell, and S. H. Stafford.
BANKS.---The Oneida Valley Bank filed its articles of incorporation and commenced the transaction of business in 1851, with a capital of $105,000 and the following officers: N. Higinbotham, President; Samuel Breese, Vice-President; T. F. Hand, Cashier. In order to issue a circulating medium, the name was changed in 1865 to the "Oneida Valley National Bank of Oneida," and business was continued under the laws governing National Banks. There has been no change in the management since the incorporation, except that occasioned by the death of General Breese, Vice-President. The vacancy was filled by the appointment of the present Vice-President, Mr. D. G. Dorrance.
The First National Bank of Oneida was organized and received its articles of incorporation Oct. 1, 1865, and immediately commenced business transactions with a capital of $125,000. The first Board of Directors was composed of Horace Devereaux, James J. Stewart, Samuel J. Fox, Franklin M. Whitman, James A. Barnett, Ambrose Hill, Simeon B. Armour, Stillman Spooner, Alvin Strong, Zadoc T. Bentley and C. A. Walrath. The first officers chosen were: Horace Devereaux, President; James J. Stewart, Vice-President; and Virgil Bull, Cashier. A successful run of business was the result of good management. It was decided to retire a portion of the capital stock, and a change was effected which produced the State Bank, on January 1st, 1874, with a capital of $60,000. As it was considered desirable to issue a currency, it became necessary to reorganize under the National Bank provisos, and Nov. 9, 1878, witnessed another change in name and style of management, and business has since that date been continued under the present name of "The National State Bank of Oneida.," the capital of $60,000 remaining unchanged. The present officers are S. H. Fox, President; S. H. Farnam, Vice-President, A. B. French, Cashier, and J. R. H. Whitnall, Assistant Cashier.
The Oneida Savings Bank was incorporated Feb. 19, 1866, and commenced business April 1st, 1866, under the supervision of the following board of management:---
Daniel G. Dorrance, President; Geo. H. Sanford and Goodwin P. Soper, Vice Presidents; Edward Loomis, Secretary and Treasurer, I. N. Messinger, Attorney. The Board of Trustees was composed of the following gentlemen: Jno. Barnett, Peterboro, Ralph H. Avery, Canastota; John J. Foote, Hamilton; Jonathan M. Wilson, Stockbridge; T. E. Barnes, Durhamville, Daniel G. Dorrance, Oneida Castle; Geo. H. Sanford, Verona, Samuel Breese, I. N. Messinger, Jas. A. Bennett, Theodore F. Hand, E. C. Sanders, George Berry, Geo. P. Soper, T. G. Seeley, Ambrose Hill, Milton Barnett. Carefulness and a thorough knowledge of financiering has given the bank an enviable reputation as the annual report of January 1st, 1880, would warrant, viz: Assets, $320,080.21; amount due depositors, $300,739.15; earnings for the year 1879, $17,511.53; surplus $19,341.06. The last election resulted in the following officers: Daniel G. Dorrance, President, Geo. Berry, 1st Vice President, C. A. Walrath, 2d Vice President; Edward Loomis, Secretary and Treasurer; C. E. Stevens, Attorney, and the following Trustees: Daniel G. Dorrance, Simeon Kenyon, Theo. F. Hand, Arichibald Hess, Edward C. Saunders, A. H. Niles, Geo. Berry, Albert E. Coe, Ralph H. Avery, Chas. E. Stevens, Ambrose Hill, C. A. Walrath, Jonathan M. Wilson, Hamilton Beecher, J. Newell Avery, (since deceased,) Loring Munroe and Henry S. Klock.
There are two private banks---E. C. Stark & Co., who succeeded in 1875 to the business of Barnes, Stark & Munroe's Bank, established in 1870; and The Central Bank, a private institution established in 1870, with Jas. D. Kilburn, President, W. E. Northrup, Vice President; and J. E. Girvin, Teller.
MANUFACTURING.---As early as 1846 General John Messenger in company with Herman Phelps and others, including O. T. Burt, of Syracuse, built a foundry and machine shop on the banks of the canal feeder, under the name of H. H. Phelps & Co.
The tannery of George Berry was built in 1857, at a cost of about $8,000. In 1871 it was burned and the same year rebuilt by the enterprising owner, and business renewed as soon as the buildings were completed. The factory is run by steam, (20 horse power engine,) and the capacity for tanning is 4,000 calf-skins yearly.
The Oneida Steam Engine and Foundry Company was organized in 1872 by stockholders. Large brick buildings were erected and the manufacture of the Westcott patent lathe and drill chucks, a leading article in their business begun. They have subsequently introduced the building of a portable agricultural engine which sells well. About 25 men are employed on an average.
In October, 1875, the Oneida Iron Works were established by W. S. Leete, C. F. Polley, A. E. Loomis, T. E. Mayne and D. Carpenter, formerly employed by Wood, Tabor & Morse, of Eaton. General job work and repairing is done at their works, but their specialty is the building of steam engines, on which they have made a number of valuable improvements. Thirty-five men are employed and the demand for the engine is very flattering. The firm expect to make seventy-five in the year 1880. Their principal sales are south and west.
Chappell, Chase, Maxwell & Co. erected large buildings and commenced the manufacture of burial caskets, Oct. 1, 1879. They employ about 100 operatives and produce an average of fifty cases per day. Although the enterprise is young in this locality, the firm are attaining a very widespread reputation of producing a superior article at low rates.
They manufacture a full line, including cloth and velvet covered and varnished burial cases and caskets, also robes, habits and wrappers of over 300 styles, and about 400 patterns of casket lining. They job every article used by undertakers in addition to the goods manufactured by them.
The Oneida Mills, G. C. Parker proprietor, are the only custom and flouring mills in the village. They were built in 1840 by Sands Higinbotham. Seven runs of stone are in operation at present, and are run by both steam and water power.
The sash and blind factory is owned by C. W. Mott & Co. The buildings are on Cedar street. The present proprietors are successors of G. P. Soper, who carried on the business alone some years, until associated with Mr. Mott in 1861. The firm is now composed of C. W. and William Mott. They manufacture doors and brackets, in addition to sash and blinds.
Hard Bros'. Spring Bed and Cot Factory was moved from Ashland, Ohio, in March, 1876, and commenced operations with three men. They now have a building two stories high, 48 by 191 feet, with engine and boiler houses attached, all being built of brick. They buy their lumber in the log and have a saw-mill and other machinery necessary to work it into the proper shapes, in fact they manufacture everything used by them except the wire. A twenty-five horse-power engine is required to run the machinery, but the business is increasing so fast as to require more machinery and a larger capacity of horse-power. At present they are turning out 500 beds and cots every week, embracing twelve different styles of the spiral and slat spring beds and cots, of which they are the inventors and
hold patents. The Brothers are both young, being under forty, and take active part in the business. They employ three traveling salesmen and ship goods to all the points of trade in the Atlantic and Gulf States. They are building a trade in Mexico, having shipped goods there the past season.
SCHOOLS.---In the earliest history of Oneida the children were sent to Oneida Castle, later on a traveling writing master opened a school in a private house. In 1841 the first school-house was built, but the name of the teacher is lost to the memory of those who remain of the olden time. However, the old school-house still remains, and may be found in the rear of the Allen Hotel, doing duty as an ice house. The trustees were Thomas Barlow, Colon Brooks and John A. Seeber; the latter gentleman is still living in the village, at the age of seventy-five.
Much of interest pertaining to the schools was lost in a fire that destroyed records of interest, and the account is therefore somewhat meagre.
Oneida village embraces districts 25 and 26. The former erected a school-house in 1850, which has been subsequently enlarged and improved. It is valued at $8,000 and is a convenient, tasteful building. The school census shows the number of children of school age in 1879 to have been 602, and nearly that number were enrolled in the school. The school requires the services of seven teachers. The branches of higher mathematics and modern and classical languages are taught, and the classes are regularly graded. The school house of district No. 26, located on Elm street, was built in the summer of 1851. Expenses for year ending Oct. 31, 1879, $2,103.26. Number of school children in the district in 1879, 485; average daily attendance, 187. The value of school property, which has been considerably improved since original building, is estimated at $7,000. The school is graded and classes are conducted through the higher branches of mathematics and in languages. A large seminary building stands unoccupied, owing to financial difficulties. It is owned by Mr. Higinbotham.
HOTELS.---The Railroad Eating House was first kept by Henry Y. Steward, and in 1841 Erasmus Stone became the proprietor. This was on the site now occupied by the Bacon House. There are at present five hotels in Oneida. The Eagle, kept by Frank Foote; the Madison House, kept by R. M. Northrup; the Allen Hotel, so long kept by John W. Allen, now kept by Fred Allen's Sons; the Bacon House, with Henry Burdick as proprietor, and the Globe Hotel, kept by E. Wirth.
CHURCHES.---St. John's church, (Protestant Episcopal,) was organized May 6th, 1843, under the charge of the Rev. Stephen H. Batlin of "Zion Church" in Rome, Oneida county, who officiated at evening prayer every Sunday evening. The first wardens were William V. Winslow and Hulbert G. Wetmore. The church service was novel to the congregation, with the exception of a few persons, mostly ladies, and the church for several years had to contend against the traditional prejudice and misapprehension of an interior American "society." Mr. Batlin resigned and was succeeded by the Rev. Henry B. Whipple, (now Bishop of Minnesota,) who with the following ministers kept up the service until Dec., 1858: the Revs. P. A. Proal, D. D., Henry A. Neel, D. D., (now Bishop of Maine,) W. A. Matson, D. D., O. E. Herrick, W. B. Ashley, Mason Gallagher, and Mr. Oliver. Bishop DeLancey held one service and administered the holy sacrament of baptism.
In 1858 Mr. Niles Higinbotham with his usual liberality donated a lot to the church, and a chapel seating about too was erected, and furnished mainly by the liberality of Mrs. S. D. Randall and her daughter, Mrs. Eliza Higinbotham. During this year the Rev. Mr. Sleeper officiated regularly in the Parish under appointment by Bishop DeLancey. He was succeeded by Dr. Matson of Utica, and Dr. Gregory, of St. James' church, of Syracuse, who was particularly interested in keeping up the services of the church. The first rector was the Rev. Edward Pidoley, who took charge of the parish March 9, 1860. Bishop DeLancey visited the parish July 17, 1860, and consecrated the chapel and administered the rite of confirmation to five persons. The rector resigned his care March l0th, 1861. The Bishop appointed the Rev. W. H. VanAntwerp, (Deacon,) who assumed the charge July 14th, 1861, at a salary of $500. July 25th, 1862, Bishop DeLancey visited the parish and ordained as priest the minister in charge. July 7, 1863, Rev. W. H. VanAntwerp resigned. April 3, 1864, he was succeeded by the Rev. H. V. Gardner, who took charge as rector, July I, 1864, and remained four years. During his rectorship, a fine bell weighing 1,200 lbs., was purchased and placed in the tower at an expense of about $900. He also raised about $1,000 as a rectory fund. The Rev. Geo. G. Perine was called as rector, and took charge August 8th, 1868, and resigned May 1st, 1873; during which time a rectory was built which with the lot adjoining the church cost about $4,000. The Rev. George T. LeBoutillior, (Deacon,) took charge May 1st, 1873, under Bishop Huntington, and he was ordained priest, by the Bishop of the Diocese May 6th, 1874, and immediately thereafter assumed the duties of rector, which office he held until Feb. 25th, 1877, when he accepted a call to Grace church, Watertown, N. Y.
In the year 1873 the chapel was enlarged to a seating capacity of 250 or 300, by the addition of transepts and a recess chancel. May 27th, 1877, the Rev. George P. Hibbard, the present rector, took charge of the parish. During his charge a debt of about $2,000 has been paid, leaving the parish entirely free. The interior of the church has been very much beautified; the altar raised, beautiful altar hangings in embroidery donated, among which is a very fine frontal, a thank-offering from the rector's wife. On Easter Day, 1880, a beautiful baptismal font of marble was set up and consecrated, being a memorial to the son of a former rector (Mr. LeBoutillier,) a gift from the children of the Sunday school. There have been 255 persons baptized in the parish, 68 couples married and 90 burials. There are 140 communicants, and the Sunday School has a membership of about 100.
Besides the two Sunday services in the parish church, and the regular Friday services, also the keeping of all holy days, the rector holds a service twice a month on Sunday at Munnsville, where there is a congregation of 75 to 140; also at Durhamville, (a mission organized by the Rev. Mr. Perrine,) service is held on the first Sunday in every month with a good congregation.
The Methodist Episcopal Church of Oneida, was organized Nov. 25th, 1850. The number of original members is not known. There had been preaching by the Methodists in Oneida previously but not regularly. The first pastor was Rev. W. E. York, appointed in 1850. He served one year, preaching in the morning at Oneida village, and in the evening at Oneida Castle. During his pastorate a subscription to build a church was started, and the following building committee appointed: David A. Parkhill, George Parkhurst and Reuben Pomeroy. The first board of trustees consisted of Sidney Rivenburgh, Ford Pilcher, George Parkhurst, Reuben Pomeroy, A. W. Stevens, James Bonner and Aaron Yale. The first class-leader was Ford Pilcher, and the first board of stewards consisted of A. W. Stevens, Curtiss Robinson, George Parkhurst, Johnson McElvey and N. C. Belknap. The first Sunday School Superintendent was Aaron Yale.
Rev. Isaac Foster was appointed in 1851 to succeed Rev. W. E. York, and during his pastorate the church was built and dedicated. The same building is still occupied by the society, though it has been re-paired and remodeled. The edifice is of brick about 36 by 58 feet with a seating capacity of 350. The subsequent pastors with their terms of service were as follows: Rev. W. Jerome, 1852-'53; D. W. Thompson, 1854; D. T. Elliott, 1855-'56; W. C. Steele, 1857-'8; Richard Cook, 1859; G. C. Elliott, 1860-'1; L. A. Eddy, 1862-'3; A. Hall, 1864; C. N. Stowers, 1865-'6; A. J. Kenyon, 1867-'8; S. Bull, 1869-'71; R. C. Fox, 1872; R. Brewster, 1873-4; L. B. Wells. 1875-'7; and the present pastor Rev. William A. Ely was appointed September 17, 1878. Under Mr. Eddy's administration in 1862-'3, the church was repaired and enlarged by the addition of a room for the social meetings of the society and the primary department of the Sunday School. During Mr. Stowers' pastorate in 1865-'6, a parsonage was erected adjoining the church.
The present membership of the church is 175. The Sunday School has a total membership of 22 officers and teachers and 196 scholars. During the present year (1880) an old debt against the church property has been liquidated, and now the property is clear of all incumbrance. The present board of trustees consists of George Berry, M. J. Shoecraft, S. N. Ruggles, C. O. Loomis; C. B. Cree, A. Alexander and John F. Wilson. The stewards are George Berry, A. Alexander, James Belton, D. H. Cole, Wm. Webb, C. O. Loomis, C. B. Cree, S. C. Gilbert, and J. B. Niles. Treasurer, S. N. Ruggles; Class Leaders, A. J. Frost, George Berry and D. H. Cole; Sunday School Superintendent, C. O. Loomis.
The Baptist Church Society was organized in 1842, at Oneida Castle, with 13 members, (4 males and 9 females). The Rev. Seymour Adams was their first pastor, who preached one-third of the time, and the Rev. D. D. Ransom preached the balance of the time until the church was removed to Oneida village, which was in 1848. April 4, 1848, the name was changed to the "Oneida Baptist Society," and Henry Marshall, Ralph K. Ellinwood and B. B. Stoddard were elected trustees. Elder L. S. Huntley was called to the pastorate Oct. 14, 1848. In 1849 the society erected their house of worship, which they are now occupying. March 14, 1849, the society added the Oneida Castle congregation to their numbers, and the present membership is 187. Their spiritual welfare is under the guidance of the Rev. G. E. Farr. This society was the home of the Rev. John Smitzer, (deceased,) who was very popular and widely known. Among the present members is the Rev. Silas Spaulding, who is 97 years old, and whose memory is still good. The church is in a flourishing condition, owning property valued at $5,000.
A very large and interesting Sunday School is connected with the church, and has 19 teachers and 203 scholars. Dr. J. T. Wallace, the superintendent, is a man highly qualified to fill that honorable and responsible position.
Presbyterian Church.---A meeting was held at the house of Mr. Sands Higinbotham early in 1844, at which there were present Mr. and Mrs. Higinbotham and their son Niles, Alex. Stewart, James Stewart, Jeremiah Cooper, Jacob Cooper, Garret Van Brocklin, Simon New and Luke Hitchcock. At this meet-
Duncan McDougall was born in the city of Schenectady in the year 1810, and came with his parents and settled near Wampsville in 1819, and continued to live with his parents there till he was 21 years of age, when he began business for himself as a carriage maker, which business he followed till 1837. For the next four years he was engaged in the grocery business. From then till 1846 was engaged in boating on the Erie canal, and in 1847 built a saw-mill at Wampsville, which he conducted for 12 years. In 1859 in company with Ira Shepard, Jared N. Avery and others he built and conducted a grist-mill till 1872, when he removed to Oneida village, and engaged in the coal business, which he continued for 5 years. In 1878, he bought an interest in the carriage business, with John Barrett, in Oneida village, where the firm of Barrett & McDougall are conducting a prosperous general carriage manufacturing business. Mr. McDougall has been twice married, first on Dec. 18th, 1834, to Miss Fanny Yorker, of Lenox, N. Y., who, died Oct. 8, 1865, and who is buried at Wampsville. His second marriage was to Miss Ellen I. Vaughn, of Bath, Steuben Co., Oct. 2, 1868. He has three children living, one by his first wife and two by his second. Mr. McDougall has been elected supervisor of his-town at seven different times, and besides has held almost all of the various town offices, at different times. He has through life been an active business man, and has taken a lively interest in the politics of the country, and has always with a consistency characteristic of the man acted with the Democratic party. He has for years been chairman of the County Democratic Committee, which office he now fills with marked ability.
He was also postmaster for the term of 8 years at Wampsville, his term expiring at the close of Pierce's administration.
ing it was resolved to organize a Presbyterian church and Society. Shortly after they secured the services of the Rev. James Nichols, and he preached in a school room on Madison street, a short distance west of the Madison House. The first record is as follows: "A meeting of citizens of Oneida Depot and vicinity was organized in the Reading Room, Friday eve., at 7 o'clock, March I, 1844, for the purpose of forming a Presbyterian society and electing trustees for the same. Herman Phelps was elected chairman and S. H. Goodwin, secretary. It was resolved that the number of trustees of this society be three, who shall be known, and their successors in office forever, by the name and title of Trustees of the Oneida Depot Presbyterian Society, and whenever a church is to be organized in this society, they are to apply to a Presbytery, which is in connection with the Old School General Assembly, for such organization." The trustees elected were James Stewart, for one year, Jeremiah Cooper, for two years, and S. H. Goodwin, for three years. It was resolved that L. Hitchcock, N. Higinbotham and S. E. Cobb be a building committee to associate with the trustees to circulate a subscription and build a house for public worship, if funds enough could be obtained.
The society became incorporate March 25, 1844, and on the 13th day of June a church was organized with thirty members, twenty of whom came from the Wampsville church. A vote decided the name to be "The Presbyterian Church of Oneida Valley," (the Valley was afterwards left off,) and the following persons were elected ruling Elders: David Blackman, Heman Phelps, James Stewart, Jeremiah Cooper and Charles L. Gardner. A church building was built, and Nov. 30, 1844, it was resolved "that the new meeting-house be dedicated to the service of God as soon after the 1st of January next as the paint of the house is sufficiently dry, and the traveling will permit."
This meeting-house is the one still in use by the society, though it has been enlarged and remodeled and materially improved. The Rev. James Nichols was called Feb. 1, 1845, to be pastor at a salary of $500, and remained until 1851. He was succeeded by Rev. C. R. Gregory, D. D., who commenced his labors in April, 1851, and continued until March, 1864.
The Society was very loyal during the war; on the day after the firing on Sumpter, at the suggestion of the pastor, two ladies made a flag, and the next Sabbath saw it floating from the top of the steeple, where it remained until whipped into shreds. Rev. Charles E. Robinson, D. D., was successor to Dr. Gregory; he was called Aug. 25, 1864, and commenced his labors during the fall, and remained until July 30, 1867. Rev. George D. Baker came in October, 1867, and dissolved his connection in July, 1871. The present pastor was called on the 27th day of March, 1872; he entered on his duties in the May following, and was installed Sept. l0th in the same year.
The success of this Society has been remarkable, and the increase a steady one,--commencing in 1844 with only 30 members, and an income so limited as to necessitate the assistance of the Home Mission, which contributed $200.00 to their support. In 1854, the members numbered 78; contributions for congregational expenses were $642.00, and for benevolent objects, $161.23. Ten years later there were 116 members, 150 Sunday School scholars, $175.00 contributed for benevolent purposes, and $1,100.00 for congregational expenses. The report for 1874 was: 240 communicants, 280 Sunday School scholars ; benevolent contributions, $703.00; congregational expenses, $2,450.00. In 1880, the number of members was 330, a Sunday School with over 350 members, (probably the largest in the county,) under the supervision of Alonzo Randall, superintendent. The names of the elders were Robert J. Stewart, Goodwin P. Soper; Alonzo Randall, Jacob Winnie, M. M. Allen, Wm. H. Carter, and Ambrose Hill, Jr.
The Roman Catholic Church was built in 1852 under the pastorate of the Rev. Patrick Kenna, (a brother of Lawrence Kenna,) who established the congregation in 1852. His death occurred in 1856, and his remains were interred in the church. He was succeeded by the Rev. Fathers McDermott, Wm. Sheahan, James A. O'Hara, (now of Syracuse,) W. F. Sheahan and Wm. Finley, who still remains as the officiating priest.
NEWSPAPERS---The Democratic Union was established at Hamilton, in October, 1856, by Levi S. Backus, and was sold the next year to W. H. Baker, who, in 1863, removed it to Oneida. Mr. Baker continued in the business until his death, June 15, 1872. The present proprietors, Baker & Maxon, (R. M. Baker and S. A. Maxon,) took possession Aug. 1, 1872, and have increased its circulation to upwards of 3,000.
The Oneida Telegraph was started by D. H. Frost, September, 1851, in 1854 was discontinued because of Mr. Frost's health failing. Some months after John Crawford became proprietor and employed Ira D. Brown as editor. The new paper was known as the Sachem. In 1863 it was again named, Dispatch being selected as the new name, Edward H. Spooner at the same time becoming a partner. In 1866 it passed into the hands of Purdy & Jackson. In 1870, Myron M. Allen became the successor of Mr. Purdy. In July, 188o, Albert P. Potter, of the Syracuse Standard, purchased Mr. Allen's interest, and the firm is now Jackson & Potter.
The Oneida Free Press, an independent weekly, was established in the early spring of 1880. Its first number appeared April 3. The proprietor is Mr. W. Hector Gale, who was born in the village and learned his trade there. Mr. Gale is a practical printer, and is issuing a well arranged newspaper, which is steadily gaining ground. The publishers acknowledge their indebtedness to Mr. Gale for much valuable information pertaining to the village of Oneida.
SOCIETIES.---Oneida Lodge, No. 270, F. & A. M., was organized with eight charter members in 1851, and received its charter June 22, 1852. The first election resulted in the selection of the following officers: Lucius Brooks, W. M.; George Harp, S. W.; Daniel T. Lype, J. W. The W. M.'s since the organization are as follows: Lucius Brooks, 1851-'53; George Harp, 1854-'57; Nelson Morris, 1858; Dr. Alonzo E. Cherry, 1859-'69; J. H. Falkner, 1870-'75; Palmer Eggleston, 1876; Dr. Alonzo E. Cherry, 1877; Morris Harrington, 1878. J. H. Falkner is the present W. M. The lodge is in a very flourishing condition, with a membership of about 150.
Doric Chapter, R. A. M., was organized in 1867 with A. E. Cherry as M. E. H. P., who was succeeded by R. E. McKenzie, Dr. D. Mason, of Canastota, Will C. Chappel, John Lockhardt and H. W. Lew. The present incumbent is W. S. Lette.
I.O. O. F.---A lodge of this order was organized under a special dispensation from the Grand Lodge, Nov. 15, 1871, and adopted for its name that of Eumenia Lodge No. 296, with the following P. G.'s as charter members: Ira Luce, Palmer Eggleston, Smith Sayles, J. D. Houghton, Alonzo E. Cherry and Orson Foster. The first officers were Rev. J. D. Houghton, N. G.; Ira Luce, V. G. The Lodge has enjoyed peace, harmony and prosperity, having at the present time some eighty active members. Chauncey Stocking has been Warden since the organization, and Ira Luce has held the office of Conductor during the existence of the Lodge with the exception of two terms. The officers for the term are H. L. Rockwell, N. G.; L. H. Canfield, V. G.; E. E. Coe, Secretary; P. D. Cheney, Treasurer; P. Eggleston, R. S. N. G.; W. W. Warr, L. S. N. G.; Ira Luce, C.; C. Stocking, W.; M. McGregor, R. S. S.; W. Hector Gale, L. S. S.; Geo. Stillson, R. S. V. G.; G. D. Hubbard, L. S. V. G.; I. M. Lamson, Chaplain.
Father Matthew Total Abstinence Union was permanently organized Feb. 22, 1874, and the following officers were selected: Laurence Kenna, President; Thomas O'Brien, V. P.; I. T. Deering, R. S.; John Delancy, C. S.; George Wilcox, T. S.; John Fitzgerald, Treasurer; Rev. William Finley, Chaplain; Neil Duross, Marshal; Thomas Sheahy, Sergeant-at-Arms. An earnest and active interest has been particularly noticeable in this Society, and it has undoubtedly been more influential than any other Society in promoting the cause of temperance in this locality. It boasts of forty active working members, and has a brass band thoroughly equipped and uniformed. Meetings are regularly held, and the attendance and enthusiasm is still as marked as at the time of its inception. The officers for 1880 are Laurence Kenna, President; Thomas Kennedy, V. P.; P. Fitzgerald, Rec. and Cor. Secretary; James Monohan, Financial Secretary; Matthew Kelley, Treasurer; Rev. Wm. Finley, Chaplain; Thomas Kelley, Marshal; Daniel Horray, Sergeant-at-Arms.
Oneida Chapter, No. 21, order of the Eastern Star.---The first organization was made through Robert Morris, LL. D., the originator of the order in 1864, under the name of "Oneida Lodge, No. 270, of the Eastern Star." Jan. 4, 1871, a charter was obtained from the Grand Chapter of the State when it was designated as Oneida Chapter, No. 21, O. E. S. Its present officers are M. E. Faulkner, W. M.; W. S. Leete, W. P.; J. A. Harp, A. M.
FIRE DEPARTMENT.---In the early days of the history of Oneida this important branch of service was somewhat neglected, but later, E. W. Jones (deceased) acted as self-appointed engineer for a number of years, and by his untiring efforts placed the department upon a much better footing, which resulted in a systematic organization of which he was elected the first chief. Upon his death he was succeeded by C. G. W. Stoddard, (in 1875,) who by persistent efforts, assisted by a thorough, practical knowledge of what was necessary, succeeded in effecting the present thorough department. Feb. 8, 1877, the present regulations were adopted, and the following officers were elected: C. G. W. Stoddard, Chief; John H. Phillips, 1st Asst.; George Paine, 2d Asst. According to the annual report in the spring of 1880, the apparatus consisted of one hook and ladder truck, one third-class Cole Bros'. steamer, one hand engine, (Button's,) two hand hose carts and one horse hose cart, and some 1,500 feet of hose in good condition. The companies are enumerated as follows: Messenger Hook and Ladder Co. No. 1, C. E. Remick, foreman; Oneida Steamer Co. No. 1, C. H. Nixdorf, foreman; German Hose Co. No. 1, Joseph Hurlee, foreman; Stoddard Engine and Hose Co. No. 2, R. Haslam, foreman. A good engine house with commodious meeting-rooms well furnished, is situated near the center of the village, and a new hook and ladder house will soon be erected on the site of the present inferior wooden structure. The members of the department are all volunteers except the engineer of the steamer, who is paid. The department are members of the State Association. A plentiful supply of water is furnished
by the "feeder," reservoirs, and cisterns. The officers for 1880 are C. G. W. Stoddard, Chief Engineer L. E. Allen, 1st Asst.; Robert Happle, 2d Asst. The Trustees are, L. A. Ashteneau, of O. S. Co. No. 1; V. Hurlee, of G. H. Co. No. 1; Wm. Bull, of M. H. & L. Co. No. 1, and William Palmer, of S. E. & H. Co. No. 2. N. Sype, Treasurer, James Vehling, Jr., Secretary. The first fire engine was purchased between the years of 1848 and 1850.
VILLAGE OFFICERS.---The first trustees of the village in 1848 were: James Williams, Joseph Fish, James McFarland and Simon E. Cobb. The first officers were: President, E. Stone; Clerk, I. C. Sloan. The election was held July 15, 1848. A code of ordinances was adopted by vote August 17, the same year.
The officers for 1880 are: DeWitt C. Stephens, President; J. Eugene Girvin, Clerk; Watson A. Stone, Treasurer; Milton L. Sayles, Street Commissioner; E. J. Brown, Acting Attorney; Erhart Worth, Charles F. Polly, Norman Lype, Charles Fitzgerald, John Fitzgerald, Trustees.
The total receipts of the village during 1879 were $9,563.01; disbursements, $9,194.45.
The policemen are appointed by the trustees and president. The present force are: M. E. Gower, (deputy sheriff and police,) George T. Cook, constable. There is a lock-up in connection with the engine house.
In 1851 an office of the Western Union Telegraph company was opened, and I. N. Messenger was their agent until 1863. The company hesitated to establish this office, hence the citizens agreed to guarantee $300 toward the expenses.
The village of Canastota, located on the Erie canal, the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad and at the northern terminus of the Canastota and Cazenovia Railroad, was incorporated April 28, 1835, by special charter, and subsequently re-organized under the general act of incorporation of April 12, 1870. The first election was held at the house of Joseph C. Spencer, the first Tuesday of May, 1835.1 The officers for 1880 are: President, R. H. Avery; Clerk, George N. Bauder; Treasurer, C. L. Hobart; Collector, Hobert J. Stebbins; Police Commissioner, Marcus Lower; Chief of Fire Department, Benj. F. Rowe; Foreman of Steamer, M. B. Robbins.
The population of the village in 1840 was 800. It contained four taverns, three churches, eight stores, 120 dwelling houses, a number of boarding houses and one machine shop. The population for 1880 is 1,606.
MERCHANTS.---The early merchants of the place, or store-keepers as they were then called, were James Graham, who kept a small grocery on the canal bank in 1817. Shortly after the opening of this Reuben Hawley and his brother John opened a store near what was then called the canal basin. Frost & Kibbe came next upon the list, and then the Crouse Brothers. The stores began to multiply as the population increased, and the old store-keepers fell away from business or moved to larger localities, as in case of the Crouse Brothers, and new claimants for patronage came into public notice. At present Canastota is well provided with stores of all kinds. James M. Parker, Hiram Brown, Charles O. Chesley and Irving B. Roberts are in the dry goods and grocery business. John and Charles Cronk, groceries and dry goods, W. T. Northrup, groceries and stationery, and Groat & Avery own a grocery and boot and shoe establishment, while an extensive business is done by Mr. Hamilton in boots, shoes and leather. The Lowenthal Brothers are in the jewelry business, and two fine drug stores are owned respectively by John W. Wilson and Wallace Suits.
POSTMASTERS.---The first postoffice was established in 1829 with Ichabod S. Spencer as postmaster, who was followed after a service of six years by Israel S. Spencer, who was succeeded in 1840 by Darwin E. Hurd. In 1866 Albert R. Barber was appointed. The office has been held by a large number from that time to the present. Noyes B. Chapman is the post-master at this time.
PHYSICIANS.---The first physician to begin practice in Canastota was Thomas Spencer, the youngest of the four Spencer brothers. He became very prominent in his profession, and was honored with several professorships. He was followed by Drs. Joel Corson, Jarvis, George Loomis, Payne, Almon Lull, V. W. Mason, Stewart and Redfield. The physicians have been numerous; at present there are seven practicing in the village.
LAWYERS.---The pioneer lawyer of Canastota was George Ager; after him Ichabod Smith Spencer, who moved from Massachusetts in 1802 to the town of Madison. He began the practice of law in 1808, and was one of the most successful lawyers of his time. Curtis C. Baldwin, Thomas Barlow, Israel S. Spencer, Hiram Bennett, William H. Kinney and I. Newton Messinger were among the earliest of the profession in Canastota. Judge Thomas Barlow is the oldest resident lawyer at present, as also the oldest practicing lawyer in the county, forty-nine years of the time having practiced in the village of Canastota.
BANKS.---The Canastota Bank was organized Jan. 12, 1856, with 46 stockholders and a capital stock of $110,000. The Board of Directors was composed of George Crouse, Wm. E. Fiske, John Montross, Jacob Crouse, Franklin M. Whitman, Robert G. Stewart, Daniel Crouse, DeWitt C. Roberts, Daniel Lewis, Charles Stroud, Daniel VanVleck, John Crouse and Daniel B. Moot. The election of officers held March 5, 1856, resulted in the following choice: Daniel Crouse, President; Wm. E. Fiske, Vice-President; George Crouse, Cashier. January 2, 1858, Daniel Crouse resigned and W. E. Fiske was elected to fill the vacancy, and Charles Stroud chosen for Vice-President. At the annual election held April 6, 1858, George Crouse was elected President, Charles Stroud, Vice-President, and Wm. E. Fiske, Cashier. May 10, 1859, Mr. Fiske resigned and D. H. Rasbach was chosen Cashier, which position he still retains. At a meeting held May 9, 1865, it was resolved to change the name to the "Canastota National Bank," as provided by the "enabling act" of this State passed March 9, 1865. In the great fire in 1873 the building was consumed and the stockholders immediately erected the fine building which they now occupy, at a cost of $6,600. The death of President Daniel Crouse was announced at a meeting held Oct. 1, 1877, and at the annual meeting, Jan. 8, 1878, H. K. W. Bruce was elected to fill the vacancy, which position he still holds. The bank has paid in dividends from Jan. 1, 1859, to Jan. 1, 1880, the handsome sum of $211,200, and its surplus and profits, according to report May 24, 1880, were $23,133.42.
Fred Fiske and Milton Delano started a private bank Aug. 7, 1876; soon afterwards Mr. Delano bought Mr. Fiske's interest and is conducting the business at present.
MANUFACTURING.---At present the most important manufacturing interest is the Canastota Knife Manufacturing Company, which was incorporated Oct. 12, 1874, with an authorized capital of $11,000, held by fifty-two stockholders. The original directors were: F. C. Fiske, Wm. Hurlbut, T. N. Jarvis, E. R. White, I. H. Allen, G. A. Forbes, J. B. Miller. Wm. Hurlbut was elected President, G. A. Forbes, Vice-President, E. N. White, Secretary, F. C. Fiske, Treasurer. The company purchased the hotel property of T. A. Andrews for $1,200 and laid the first stone for the foundation Oct. 27, 1874. Work was commenced in the factory about June 1, 1875, under Silas Moore, superintendent, and a small force of men. The force has been increased to 70 and the reputation of the goods produced has grown so rapidly that although fifty dozen knives are made daily, the orders on hand at present cover the production of six months in advance. Seven hundred and forty styles are made. At present the officers are: President, G. A. Forbes; Vice-President, John H. Allen; Secretary and Treasurer, J. B. Miller; General Manager, Fred C. Fiske. An increase of the capital stock to $50,000 and the enlargement of the works to accommodate a working force of 200 is at present under consideration.
For some years Charles Spencer had been manufacturing optical instruments in a quiet way, but in 1846 he built a shop and formed a partnership with Hamilton Spencer and carried on the business for some time. Later on the firm became known as Spencer & Eaton. This firm made the Hamilton College Telescope, so widely known as a superior instrument. The business was continued in Canastota until 1876, when it was removed to Geneva, N. Y.
The firm of D. & J. Travis are doing quite a business in the manufacture of carriages.
SCHOOLS.---District No. 9 was the first school district organized with the appointment of trustees. The meeting was held at the house of James Graham, Nov. 27, 1820. The trustees elected were: Samuel Halliday, Barnhardt Nellis and Eleazer Lewis. No school house was built, however, until the year 1820, which was formally accepted Feb. 22, 1821. This building was burned the winter of 1831, and the following summer a new house was erected and occupied until 1846, when a new house was built upon a larger scale. This served until the present commodious building was ready for occupancy. The present Union School was built in 1877, the corner stone being laid with Masonic ceremonies the 28th of June of that year. On this occasion Judge Thomas Barlow gave a history of the schools of the place, and Chancellor E. O. Haven, of the Syracuse University, delivered the address.
CHURCHES.---In 1818 or '19 the few persons of the Baptist belief residing in Canastota met and organized. So few were the members and having no regular pastor to keep them together, the society soon were obliged to give up. Very soon after the Methodists met in the building used for school purposes and organized a society. They were soon followed by the Episcopalians, who organized in 1820. The first clergyman settled was Joseph B. Young, of the Episcopal society. The first Methodist minister that officiated in the village was Nicholas Burt. In 1833 the Methodist church was built. In the same year the Reformed Protestant church was finished and dedicated. The dedicatory sermon was delivered by the Rev. Dr. George Bethune. This church was abandoned in 1878 as a place of worship, owing to the annoyance of the railroad travel, as it stands beside the track of the N. Y. Central road. The Rev. T. B. Gregory was the first pastor of this church. The Universalists were quite a numerous people and had occasional meetings, but never settled but one minister--the Rev. Mr. Goss. They finally joined the Free church and the united societies erected a place of worship in 1841, which was burned in the fire of 1871. In 1873 the present Free church was built, with Rev. Mr. Bailey, of the Unitarian belief, as its first pastor. The church is now occupied by the Reformed society, of which the Rev. John W. Whitford is the minister. In 1868 the Baptists reorganized, and in 1873 began the erection of a church which was finished and dedicated in 1874. For a while the society was supplied by Madison University, but finally settled the Rev. Mr. Davis as its pastor.
NEWSPAPERS.---The first press was set up in 1829 by Silas Judd, who published a small weekly paper called The Bulletin. He sold out to Thomas G. Sutherland, who continued the publication about one year, changing the name of the paper to The Vidette. In 1856 George H. Merriam established the Canastota Times, which was continued two years under his management and a few months under his successor, Frederick A. Williams, and was discontinued about June 1, 1858. In the autumn of the same year James E. N. Backus started the Canastota Eagle, which was discontinued in the winter or 1859-'60. The Weekly Gazette was established in the summer of 1860 by Smith VanAllen; the paper soon passed into the hands of Francis A. Darling, who continued its publication until the date of his enlistment as a volunteer in 1861, when it was suspended. The next paper was the Canastota Herald, started in 1864 or '5 by Arthur White. John Greenhow was soon after admitted into partnership. After one year Mr. Greenhow became sole proprietor and still later admitted his son into partnership. In 1870 a Mr. Schaffer purchased the paper. Walter C. Stone succeeded him after a few months, and published the Herald until February, 1873, when he sold out to Albert R. Barlow, who in October, 1875, sold to the present proprietor and editor, M. B. Robbins.
THE FIRE DEPARTMENT.---To this but little or no attention was paid for many years, and not until Canastota had suffered most severely by fire, did the village residents awaken to the need of a well organized and efficient company. At this time a steamer and hand engine are the available force in case of fire. A regular company has been formed of which Mr. M. B. Robbins is foreman.
HOTELS.---In 1817 the first public house of the village was kept by James Graham on the tow-path of the canal, afterwards succeeded by his son James Graham, Jr. Captain Reuben Perkins also established a tavern in the western portion of the town and was followed by Warren Colton. In 1831 the Graham House was kept by Joseph C. Spencer, the Canastota House by John B. Young, and the house so long kept by Captain Perkins was kept by Eliab Joslin. At present the Lewis House is well conducted by Hiram Lewis. The Twogood House by D. C. Twogood; the Doolittle House by George Sage, and the Wirth House by Matthias Wirth.
SOCIETIES---Lodge No. 231, F. & A. M., was instituted in 1851, with 11 charter members, and elected as first officers Nelson C. Powers, W. M.; Colon Brooks, S. W.; and Franklin B. Curtiss, J. W. The lodge having been negligent in attending to its business with the Grand Lodge, its warrant was withdrawn, but it was reorganized in 1860 with 14 members. The officers were Harrison Frank, W. M.; Chas. A. Spencer, S. W.; and V. W. Mason, J. W.; Since the last organization the Lodge has steadily increased, and now has about 90 members in good standing, with Wm. T. Northrup, W. M.; M. E. Barlow, S. W.; W. H. Yale, J. W.; A. F. Lowenthal, Sec'y. The Lodge met with a serious misfortune in the loss of its records and property by the great fire, but they have entirely recovered, are free from debt, and have one of the finest halls in Central New York, in the upper story of the Doolittle House.
Canastota Lodge No. 190, A. O. U. W., received its charter December 30, 1878, having 15 members at the time. The officers elected were: M. B. Robbins, M. W.; Charles Roble, Rec.; I. L. Roberts, Financier; Rev. J. H. Palmer, P. M. W.; Silas M. Moore, Foreman; J. M. Parker, Receiver; I. H. Fancher, Overseer; Rev. J. H. Palmer, Representative to Grand Lodge; Benj. Rowe, G.; Wallace Suits, J. W.; E. A. Haines, O. W. The membership has considerably increased. Meetings are held alternate Monday evenings in Good Templars' hall. Present officers (1880,) Rev. J. H. Palmer, P. M. W.; M. B. Robbins, M. W.; S. M. Moon, Foreman; M. M. Hess, Overseer; E. A. Haines, Recorder; I. L. Roberts, Financier; J. M. Parker, Receiver; Benj. Rowe, Guide; Wallace Suits, I. W.; Judson Field, 0. W.
A Lodge of I. O. G. T. was instituted May 10, 1868, and had a prosperous existence of a few years, then commenced to decline and finally surrendered its charter during the winter of 1876. A new Lodge---"Resolute," No. 704---was organized May 12, 1878, with 19 charter members. The officers elected were: F. F. Lamb, W. C. T.; Helen M. Jarvis, W. V. T; Mrs. J. H. Woodford, W: Secretary; Mrs. Geo. Bligh, W. Treasurer; Henry Bauder, Chaplain; D. S. Peckham, Lodge Deputy and D. G. W. C. T. The Lodge is blessed in its work with a steady growth, the present membership is 36. Meetings are held every Wednesday evening in the hall furnished by the Lodge. Present officers: Hiram L. Bauder, W. C. T.; Mrs. Julia Wells, W. V. T.; F. F. Lamb, W. Secretary; Walter Jarvis, W. Treasurer; Annie Rogers, Chaplain; Geo. N. Bauder, D. G. W. C. T.
The County Lodge has its headquarters at Canastota. The officers for 1880 are: County C. T., Rev. J. H. Benedict, of Hamilton ; County V. T., Miss Emma TrumbullĄ Bridgeport; County Secretary, W. F. Smith, Hamilton; County Treasurer, Mrs. Geo. N. Bauder, Canastota ; County Deputy, C. D. Allen, Bridgeport.
Clockville is a small hamlet situated some two miles south of Canastota. It was first settled by Conrad Klock, a Mohawk Valley native, who moved to the town of Lenox in 1792. With him came his three sons, Joseph, John and Conrad. The place for some time was known as Shippeville, so called from an old tavern-keeper called "Shippe." When the first postoffice was established, the name of Clockville was formally bestowed upon it, in honor of the Klock family. The Klock family opened roads of communication with Oneida Castle and Canasaraga, beside contributing in every way to the building up of the settlement. Other families moved to the place soon after the Klocks, the most of them from the Mohawk Valley, thus settling the vicinity at the outset with the industrious Dutch element. Among those who followed close upon the Klocks were the Buyeas, Forbes's, Snyders, Moots, Betsingers and Seebers. Most of the early families have representatives yet living in the vicinity. Adam Klock one of the pioneers died in 1878. Of the Forbes family none remain. Duane Klock is the last of that family. The Seebers and Moots are still remaining. In 1806 Thomas Lawrence moved to Clockville and built a stone house near the village, as it was called, and did much toward building the roads, he also erected the first plaster-mill. He died May 9, 1866. His widow is still living at the age of eighty-four years. Harry Simon moved there in the year 1827, and is still living. He is nearly seventy years of age and was a blacksmith for many years. Marvin Keeney settled there in 1834, was a Justice of the Peace in 1852. He is still living. In 1840 Clockville contained forty dwellings, two churches, two taverns, one store, two grist-mills, and two plaster-mills, with a population of about 400. At the present date, 1880, it contains 182 inhabitants, fifty dwellings, two public houses, two grist-mills, one saw-mill, two churches, with stores for general merchandise, and several shops for the necessary work required in such a locality.
MERCHANTS.---Of the early store-keepers of the place but little can be ascertained, as none of those living can remember accurately as to the history of the stores as told them by their elders. The business has seemingly not been one of the most prosperous for those engaged, as the later records prove. In 1850 Benjamin Bort opened a shoe shop, and after a short time was succeeded by J. D. Walrath, who opened a store for general merchandise about 1852. In 1853 the store was closed, but along toward the last of the year was re-opened by H. H. Hathaway with a stock of drugs and medicines. After one year in the business he sold to Giles S. Cranson, who, after a time, cleared out the stock by auction, after which the store was again closed. It was again opened by J. D. Walrath, who was succeeded by J. Otis Tuttle, and from that time to the present, with periods of being closed, the store has been occupied by S. K. Pettitt, and now by J. L. Lawrence.
The upper store of the place has also been opened and closed in the same manner since it was first opened, and has passed through the hands of Messrs. S. and S. K. Pettitt, then by S. Pettitt, J. H. Hathaway, Levi Miller, until now, in 1880, it is in the possession of H. H. Hathaway.
A boot and shoe shop is kept by F. M. Fancher, who succeeded his father, Rufus Fancher, who established the business in 1857.
POSTMASTERS.---Peleg Card was the first postmaster of the place. He was succeeded by Colonel Stephen Chapman, then by his son B. Frank Chapman, Frank Blye, Lyman Hicks and Harry Simons. In 1861 Robert B. Beall was appointed postmaster, and held that office until 1865, when he was followed by Charles Miller, J. Otis Tuttle, S. K. Pettitt. The present postmaster, Robert B. Beall, was appointed in 1879. It is a fourth-class office and has two mails each day.
PHYSICIANS.---Dr. Avery was in practice for many years, and died in 1850. After his death Dr. Mitchell practiced for some time.
Dr. Charles McConnell came from Ottawa, Canada, in 1876, and still remains in the place as the only physician.
MANUFACTURING.---Before the year 1820 a trip-hammer shop was built and scythes were made; it was last run by Mr. Maher, but has not been in use for many years. This was known as the lower trip-hammer shop. Another was built and known as the upper shop, but was not used long and was only for ordinary work.
In 1866 Joseph L. Mansfield established a factory for the manufacture of horse hay forks. One hundred forks were made the first year. Facilities have
Abi A. Phipps was born in Thompson, Windham county, Conn., in 1810, and is the son of David H. Phipps, deceased, who was a Connecticut man, but moved from Connecticut to the town of Oppenheim, Montgomery county, N. Y., in 1821. Abi came with his father to Montgomery county, and was then eleven years of age. He lived there and in that vicinity until 1841, from which place he removed to Nelson, Madison county where in 1841 he purchased a farm and continued to live there nine years. He then lived in Eaton one year, thence to Smithfield, Madison county, and purchased a farm in that town originally known as the Proy farm, and continued to live there sixteen years, until he came here to Clockville, where he is residing in a pleasant and beautiful home, on the road to Canastota.
Mr. Phipps has been twice married, first, to Lydia Kibbe, daughter of Elder Kibbe, of Oppenheim, in the year 1834, and who died March, 1860, at Smithfield. His second marriage was to Diana Hess, the daughter of David Hess, of Fenner, who is still living. By his first wife he had two children, a son, and a daughter who is the wife of James G. Messenger, of Smithfield. He was elected Assessor of the town of Nelson in 1849. In Smithfield, in 1859 and 1860, he represented his town in the Board of Supervisors and was re-elected in 1864, '5 and '6, and is now for the third year Town Auditor of Lenox, and has aided in reducing the taxes $6,000. Though often solicited to take other public offices, he has always declined to do so, rather devoting his time to business.
Though holding offices frequently, he has not been an office-seeker, but has rather accepted such office as he filled at the solicitation of friends whose opinions he regarded. Mr. Phipps has been an industrious and successful farmer all his life, and though now quite tired of the hard labors of his earlier days, is spending the remainder of his life among his old associates, an honored and respected citizen of the town. His has been a life well spent and brings its unfailing reward of peace, competency and the respect of his fellow men about him.
been gradually increased, and hay rakes are also made. Besides rakes and forks, this establishment produces harvesting tools in general, and does considerable jobbing. This building was formerly occupied as a woolen factory, which business was established by Colon Brooks about forty years ago. The agricultural works are owned at present by Patten & Stafford.
Peter Parsalian built and operated a trip-hammer shop in 1827, which was afterwards used as a wagon shop for over ten years. Mr. Nathaniel Kaiser converted it into 'a cheese factory.
In 1827 the Clockville grist-mill was built by Brooks & Nye who after some years sold it to Gerrit S. Sayles. It was burned in 1856 and rebuilt by Giles Cranson. Austin A. Watson owned it later, and in 1875 sold it to the present proprietor, William Clow.
Harry Simons came from Chenango county in 1827 to make the iron work for this mill and has continued his blacksmithing business ever since. Of the inhabitants of the place at that time no other than himself remains alive.
There is a saw-mill at Clockville operated by C. W. Reynolds; it was formerly for some time the property of Mr. Chapman.
An old grist-mill stands on the road to Lenox Furnace which was built in 1820 by J. D. Nellis. Twenty-five years ago it was owned by S. Bennett. It has been in posession of H. H. Hathway, Wright & Baker and Mr. Parker, who sold it to S. Pettitt, the present owner. A cheese box factory and cheese factory are each doing quite a business, while paint and blacksmith shops are well patronized.
LAWYERS.---Stephen Chapman moved to Clockville about the year 1820, and was the earliest lawyer in the place. B. F. Chapman was in practice for many years, until the spring of 1880 when he moved to Oneida. George W. Chapman is the lawyer of the village at present.
HOTELS.---The public houses of the place scarcely come up to one's ideas of hotels as understood at the present day. The first "tavern" of which there is any knowledge was Shippe's House, which was owned by that good old Dutchman in the primitive days of the place. At "the Corners," about a half mile from Clockville, an inn was kept by one of the settlers by the name of Fort. In 1827 Charles Lints opened a public house, afterwards kept by Peleg Card, and carried on by his widow after his death for some time. Solomon Wilcox owned the house until 1866 when he died, and his widow sold after a while to William Skinner, who repaired the house and sold to Daniel Betsinger, who sold to the present proprietor, Charles Suits. This is known as the Suits House, formerly called the "lower house" to distinguish it from the other which is called the "upper house."
In 1827 the "upper house" was opened by a Mr. Bowman, who was succeeded by Mr. Miller, Mr. Sayles, Daniel H. King and Gideon Cole. Daniel H. King again took the house, and it was purchased in 1866 by Frederick Hubbard, who after one year sold to Joseph Card, who was followed by Ira Smith and George Garlock. The property is now in possession of John Clark, who conducts the house.
SCHOOLS.---The earliest school record dates back to 1813, when the district was known as No. 4, of the town of Lenox. The first school meeting was held at the house of Stephen Chapman, June 14, 1813. The trustees were John I. D. Nellis, Stephen Chapman and David Fowler, who acted as clerk. Sylvanus Seeber was collector. The first meeting was for taking action in regard to a new school-house. The school-house was twenty-four feet square and cost $100. The first teacher was Peleg Card, and one of the recorded resolutions of the trustees for 1817 was that the teacher was responsible for the good behavior of the scholars "from home to home again," a difficult matter for a teacher in these times. In 1820 the district was changed to No. 6. In 1821 Samuel Glidden was the teacher, and the year of 1822, Julius A. Spencer taught the winter school, for which he was paid $21.50. Up to 1822 the school-house was repaired twice, when a new floor was laid. In this year it was resolved to build a new school-house of the dimensions of 24 by 30 feet, and 10 feet high, to cost about $350. This was to be finished by Oct. 7, 1824. This was accomplished, the building paid for, and occupied until 1853 when the present building was erected at a cost of something over $1,000. In 1853 James Rowley was the principal and Mrs. Best assistant. The present house is a frame building two stories high; the principal, Mr. Robert Roantree, and Miss Martha Garlock, assistant. Sixty scholars usually attend during the winter, and about thirty-five or forty during the summer.
CHURCHES.---A lot was in 1832 deeded by Christian Kilts and Catharine Kilts, his wife, to Sylvester Beecher, Silas Sayles, Isaac I. Forbes, Christian Kilts and John A. Seeber, trustees of the First Methodist Protestant Society of Lenox, for the building of a house of worship. The society immediately erected a building on the lot which was situated on Oak Hill. This society was subsequently disbanded and the property reverted to the possession of Stephen Chapman. The Methodist Episcopal Church of Clockville was organized June 28, 1848. Rev. Calvin M. Flint and Adam Klock presided at the meeting. Calvin M. Flint, Adam Klock, John T. Parkhill, Thomas Lawrence, George Best and B. F. Chapman were elected trustees. The society purchased from Mr. Chapman the church building of the old Methodist Protestant society and removed it to its present location. The church has met with the experiences usual to such bodies during the years since 1848. The present pastor is H. C. Andrews; membership in good standing, 40; a very fine Sabbath School. The church property has been considerably improved and is considered worth $4,000, including the parsonage. Present trustees: H. C. Miller, F. C. Clow, Eli Near, O. A. Strough, A. C. Wilbur, A. W. Stedman; Recording steward, F. M. Fancher.
The Baptist church of Lenox was organized about 1847. Its building was erected in 1848. Most of the original members lived at Mile Strip and they at fist intended to build the church in that locality. Deaths and numerous removals about 1855 greatly reduced the membership, which is now only 32. The deacons are W. V. Bosworth, S. H. Corey. The first deacons were Amos Corey, Stephen Palmer, P. P. Randall, all now dead. The Rev. J. H. Palmer, of Canastota, served this church as pastor four years and since his resignation the church has had no pastor. The church property is worth $5,000 and is unincumbered. The Sabbath school was abandoned in 1879, but is to be revived. Services are held each Sabbath, Mr. Barnes from Canastota officiating.
SOCIETIES.---Clockville Lodge 313, I. O. O. F., was instituted Dec. 15, 1848, with five charter members, and reinstated April 3, 1872, with the following officers: B. F. Chapman, N. G.; Marvin Keeney, V. G.; A. C. Wilcox, Secretary. The lodge at present has a fine hall with a membership of 60 enrolled, 42 active. Present officers: D. D. Onon, N. G.; Robert Roantree, V. G.; George W. Chapman, Secretary and representative to the Grand Lodge; Harry Simons, Warden. Since reinstatement the lodge has lost by death but a single member, Robert Jones.
The first settlement of Quality Hill was made in 1806, when Joseph Bruce moved to the locality from New Hartford, Oneida county, and Dr. Nathaniel Hall from Litchfield county, Conn. In 1810 the Spencer family settled on the hill lying east of Quality Hill. Different versions are given as to the reasons for so strange a name as Quality Hill being bestowed upon the hamlet. In those days two parties of politicians, Democrats and Federals, stood relatively as do the Republicans and Democrats of the present day. The Democrats claimed to be better than the Federals, which the latter resented. The Bruce family belonged to the former party while the Spencers were uncompromising Federalists. In this manner the eastern hill where the Spencers resided was dubbed Federal Hill by the Democrats, while they in derision of the Democrats called the residence of the Bruce family Quality Hill. Another version is, that the name was bestowed upon the hill by a young lady because of the exclusiveness of the families residing in that locality. Whichever story may receive the most credence the fact remains, Quality Hill was given in derision at first and has remained the name of the place to this day. The early settlers of this hill were men of sterling worth and wide influence. Judge William I. Hopkins, Dr. Asahel Prior, Colonel Thomas W. Phelps, Captain W. Jennings, Dr. Nathaniel Hall, Colonel John P. Webb and Captain Oliver Clarke. The Bruce family, who have so long resided on the same land taken up by them, have been as widely known as any family in the vicinity. Joseph Bruce, the pioneer, was born in Boston, Mass., of Scotch parentage, in 1781. When but a boy he with his mother moved to New Hartford, Oneida county. He settled on the Hill in 1806, where five children were born to him, B. Franklin, Edom N., H. K. W., Nancy A. and Joseph W. Mr. Bruce held positions of trust for many years, was Justice of the Peace, Under Sheriff of the county, Postmaster for a long time, and for a number of years President of the bank of Whitestown. He was lieutenant of a company of light artillery in the war of 1812. Owing to the sickness of Captain Jennings, commandant of the company, Lieutenant Bruce commanded the company during its service. He was afterwards commissioned Captain and then Major. He died in 1872, aged 83 years.
General Benjamin F. Bruce was born in 1812, and married the daughter of Dr. Hall. He has been widely known in various positions for many years. He was Inspector General of the State, Canal Commissioner, a member of the convention to revise the State Constitution in 1846, and Member of Assembly. As a public speaker during many political campaigns his reputation was unequaled. He still resides at the old home at Quality Hill. Two of their children only survive, Dwight H. Bruce, of the Syracuse journal, and Ellen B., wife of the late Consul Commissioner R. W. Stroud.
For many years Quality Hill was the nucleus of the surrounding country. The building up of Canastota by the cutting through of the Erie canal, was the signal for the business men of the place to break away from the settlement into a wider sphere. At one time two hotels were doing a flourishing business, stores were built, a post-office was established and a Masonic lodge was instituted and largely attended.
MERCHANTS.---The first store was kept by Captain William Jennings. Major Joseph Bruce followed and soon formed a partnership with Dr. Hall for the sale of drugs and general merchandise. Harvey G. Morse, Fiske & Howland also opened stores in the place, afterwards followed by Curtis C. Baldwin. The last merchant of the place was Jarvis Langdon, who afterwards moved to Elmira and became one of the most successful merchants of that city.
PHYSICIANS.---The early physicians were renowned in their time for their ability. Dr. Asahel Prior moved into the town about 1797. When Quality Hill was settled he built a house there and after many years of usefulness died in 1856, aged 84 years. Dr. Nathaniel Hall settled on Quality Hill about the year 1806. He practiced for many years most successfully. Dr. Thomas Spencer established a practice the same year with Drs. Hall and Prior. He held a professorship in Geneva College and became quite prominent in his profession. Dr. Oaks was the last physician on the hill; after practicing there some years he removed to Chittenango.
LAWYERS.---General Ichabod Smith Spencer was the earliest settled lawyer, and moved to the town of Lenox in 1802. His practice began in 1808. Joshua A., his brother, also began practice in the town, and both entered the service of the State during the frontier war. Joshua A. became celebrated for his able and successful defense of McLeod for a murder committed on the line in 1836.
He took for his grounds of defense the fact that his client was a British subject and in defense of his country when the act was committed. He won his client's case after a protracted trial and was awarded £1,000 in gold by the British government. Mr. Spencer also represented his State in the Senate for two years. The first murder trial of the county was held at Quality Hill, and so great was the throng attending the school-house was not large enough to contain them, and the court was held in a large barn. The case was that of a man by the name of Hitchcock who poisoned his wife. The trial was conducted by Judge VanNess, of Utica.
HOTELS.---The first public house of any kind was opened by Sylvanus Smalley. Colonel John P. Webb kept the Stage House and was known far and near as the "polite landlord." Oliver Clarke also kept a public house, and at that time the two were well patronized owing to the large amount of travel over the old turnpike. The first hotel was built by Mr. Olcott. After keeping it for some years he sold out and it passed through many hands. Ira Seymour was proprietor for some time, and the last landlord was Mr. Smith. Since 1870 no public house has been kept there.
SCHOOLS.---A school house was erected in the early years of the settlement, and a small school kept. In 1814 a new school house was erected with Joseph W. Palmer as teacher. Mr. Palmer was afterwards county sheriff. At present a district school is taught by Miss Stroud, and averages about twenty-five pupils.
POSTMASTERS.---The first post office in this section of Madison county was established on Quality Hill. The first postmaster was Major Joseph Bruce who held it for a number of years, but was turned out when the federals gained power, and Harvey G. Morse appointed in his stead. After Mr. Morse, John P. Webb served in that capacity, and then Major Bruce was again appointed. He was succeeded by Joseph W. Bruce. H. K. Bruce is the present postmaster. One regular mail is received each day.
CHURCHES.---There is but one church at Quality Hill. This is Congregational and was organized in 1810. No regular pastor was established however for some time, and then the Rev. Ira M. Olds was settled. Mr. Olds was pastor of the church for twenty-five years, also attending to his farm. The present pastor is the Rev. Sybrant Nelson who moved from St. Lawrence county some four years ago. The church edifice is of frame and fronts on an extensive lawn.
Oneida Lake, more commonly known as Messenger's from the proprietor of the hotel there, is a post village, situated about six miles north and west of Canastota. It contains one hotel, kept by O. E. Messenger, and a general store kept by H. W. Sherwood, who is also the postmaster. This hamlet is charmingly situated on the Lake road overlooking Oneida lake, and is a favorite resort with pleasure seekers visiting that charming sheet of water.
Upper South Bay is a small hamlet situated on the Lake road, located about five miles north and east of Canastota, and one mile west of Oneida Valley. It contains three hotels and a saw mill. The old branch canal from the Erie to Oneida lake terminates at this point, but has been abandoned for quite a number of years. There is a church located here of the Methodist Episcopal denomination; Rev. Daniel Moose is the present pastor. Promised data in regard to this church have not been furnished.
Oneida Valley is a post village located in the extreme north-east part of the town, and is situated about six miles from both Oneida and Canastota. It contains a cheese factory, owned by Mr. Decker; two stores, August and Andrew Anderson, and George Adams, proprietors; one hotel, built on the site of one burned in 1876, J. O. Goff, proprietor; one wagon shop, kept by Daniel Farnham; and two blacksmith shops, kept by Mr. Phalen and Mr. Schlosser. W. Stedman is the postmaster.
The Oneida Valley Presbyterian Church was organized May 24, 1847, by a committee from the Presbytery of Albany, consisting of Rev. E. S. Barrows, Rev. James Nichols and J. Cooper, Esq., with the following members: James Williamson, Ezra McEwen, G. T. Kirkland, Charles Smith, William Williamson. Rev. James Nichols labored with them before organization, and until Oct. 31, 1847, soon after which time Rev. Jehiel Talmage commenced his labors. He was installed Nov. 1, 1848. Andrew Cochrane's name first appears upon the records March 9, 1851; Nathaniel B. Klink's, July 26, 1851; Wm. D. McKinley's, Sept. 10, 1852; E. Holmes', July 1, 1854; E. J. Chapman's, July 27, 1856; John Crawford's, in the fall of 1858, and I. N. Randall's, Oct. 1, 1859. The latter remained five years.
The records of the church are missing from 1864 to 1876. In this latter year Rev. C. W. McCarthy took charge. In 1877, Mr. Gaston supplied the pulpit and has been followed by Rev. E. S. Walker, Mr. Thompson, a student of Hamilton, and Mr. Wurts, the present pastor, who commenced in the spring of 1880. The present membership of the church is about 22, and of the Sunday School about 30.
The frame of the church was erected in 1848 with the intention of finishing it as a Union church, but the projectors, owing to a lack of funds, were unable to finish it. Subscriptions to the amount of $300 from the Presbyterian and $100 from the members of other denominations were collected in 1850, and the building was finally finished about 1854, and has since been used by the Presbyterians.
Wampsville is a small post village located on the Seneca turnpike about midway between Canastota and Oneida, and was at one time a place of considerable importance when the Seneca turnpike was at the height of its prosperity and thronged with travelers exploring the western country, and when Angel DeFerriere resided near here and from his large fortune established many deserving young men in business at this point.
The place derives its name from Myndert Wemple the first settler here, familiarly known as "Old Wemp," and was first called "Wempsville," but this was very soon corrupted to Wampsville, which name it still holds. It contains one hotel, kept by Ed. Suits, who has been proprietor for twenty years; one store, kept by A. A. Loucks, who commenced business in April, 1879, and who was preceded by Rush Parkhurst; one blacksmith shop and one shoe shop.
The postoffice was established about 1824 with William Spencer as postmaster, and was kept in his old hotel on the turnpike. This building is now standing a short distance west from the four corners. The store that Mr. Loucks occupies was built by William Spencer, and the first merchant therein was Thomas T. Loomis, who was also Justice. Some of the principal merchants since him have been Franklin Johnson, Ward & Case, and Ward & Smith. Lyman Avery is the station agent.
The Wampsville Presbyterian Society was organized on the 9th of April, 1828, at the school house in Wampsville, and elected the following trustees: James Stewart, Jared N. Avery and Elisha Cranson. The records of the church are very meager. Rev. George Freeman was engaged April 15, 1832, for six months. July 8, 1833 a call was extended to Rev. Wm. H. Cooper, August 11, 1856, Mr. Cooper requested a dismission. He was followed by Revs. Mr. Hickok, Warren, Corey, Allen, Wurts, Dr. Franklin, and Traver, although this is by no means a full list. Rev. Mr. Walker, of DeWitt, is at present occupying the pulpit as stated supply, and has been with them for about three years.
The church was built in 1832 at a cost of about $1,500. It was repaired in 1878 and is now in excellent condition. Present membership is, church about 25 and Sunday School about 30. Daniel VanVleck was appointed clerk in 1844 and still holds that office.
Bennett's Corners is situated about one mile south from Oneida community. It derives its name from John Bennett, an early settler from Herkimer Co. P. McDoel was the first merchant and commenced business in 1832. There is no one here at present in business. Mr. McDoel has been postmaster since 1832. The Corners used to boast of two taverns, one built by Mr. McDoel and the other by John Bennett. The former was burned in 1867 and the latter still stands opposite from the post-office and is used as a dwelling house.
The Methodist Episcopal Society at Bennett's Corners was organized March 24, 1851, Rev. J. D. Tony, pastor. The succession of pastors has been as follows, as obtained from the church record: July 27, 1854, R. H. Clark; Oct. 6, 1856, F. W. Tooke; April 15, 1858, Gorden Moore; Nov. 12, 1860, L. H. York; March, 1865, G. W. Smith; Sept. 30, 1874, Daniel Moose; May 1, 1876, H. Parker Ross; June 23, 1878, C. W. Lane; October, 1879, H. W. Williams the present pastor. There are two Indian missions in this same charge, one in Oneida county.
The society owns a neat church and parsonage.
Lenox Mills, located on the Cowassalon, are run by Charles C. Roantree, who has had possession since September, 1876.
Semun Eddy who owns the saw-mill at this place, owned it formerly. The old mill on this site was burned and the present mill erected in 1860.
The saw-mill was originally built by the Lenox Furnace company, but has since been remodeled.
Lenox Furnace is situated about one and one-half miles south of Wampsville, and derives its name from having formerly been the site of the works of the Lenox Iron company. This company was organized in 1815 with a capital of $20,000. The first iron was cast from their works in 1816. In 1847 the business was discontinued.
George B. Cady built here in 1860, a woolen mill, which has been in operation until December 31, 1879, and up to that time worked about twenty hands.
This Society has a world-wide reputation, and attracts annually thousands of visitors from this and other countries. Its main dwellings, its large preserving establishment, and its central offices are in Lenox, Madison county; its trap factory and silk work; and a score of tenant houses for its hired workmen, are in Vernon, Oneida county; its gardens, orchards, vineyards, plantations of strawberries, raspberries, etc., are in Madison county; but full half of its land and its dairy and stock barns are in Oneida county. Both the Oneida and Skenandoah creeks flow through their domain, and furnish valuable water-powers. Their chief industries, aside from the cultivation of the land, of which they have five hundred and seventy acres, are the manufacture of steel traps, chains, table ware, machine twist and sewing silk, and the preservation of fruits and vegetables. In these and other smaller branches of industry they employ many persons from the surrounding population, having sometimes more than three hundred persons upon their pay-roll. Their taxes for the last seventeen years have amounted to $52,000, and in a single year (1866,) reached $10,819.17.
The Community was organized in 1848, on land then owned by Jonathan Burt. Its present number, including a small affiliated society in Connecticut, is about 300. Its membership has not increased for several years. They deem their present number sufficiently large for a single Community.
John H. Noyes, a graduate of the Yale Theological Seminary, and a man of rare ability, was the founder of the Community. The original members were previously believers in his new views of religious doctrine, and to realize a higher Christian life had separated from the popular churches of the New England and Middle States. They are acknowledged by all unprejudiced persons who have made their acquaintance to be men and women of intelligence and probity.
Of their early experiences in Community life the following record is given:---
"The buildings of the Community consisted at first of two small frame dwellings, a log-hut and an old saw-mill, once owned by the Indians. It was a dozen years before their members got beyond the necessity of sleeping in garrets and out-houses. Though the means brought in by the members enabled them to live tolerably well at first, they soon learned to content themselves with the humblest fare. For years bread and milk, potatoes and beans, with milk gravy in lieu of butter, were the chief articles of diet. Their first meetings were held at the old log-house. In the absence of chairs, the members sat on stairs, trunks, or whatever else they could find. Their Sunday gatherings, which at that time attracted outside people, were first held in an old barn; and after the Mansion House, as they called it, was completed, their meeting-hall and dining-rooms were furnished with basswood benches.
"The industries of the Community were also at first of the simplest and rudest kinds; farming, logging, milling, and clearing swamp, in which latter occupation the women courageously engaged, as they did also in lathing and other work connected with the building of the first houses. There were no distinctions of classes in respect to labor, Mr. Noyes, the founder, taking the lead as mason, in laying up chimneys and foundation walls.
"The Community treasury was frequently empty in those early days; it was not always easy to pay their postage; and they often could not tell a day before-hand where the money was coming from to buy the necessary groceries. Nothing but the strictest economy and adherence to the rule, 'Pay as you go,' and, above all, the blessing of God, as they believed, kept them from the financial ruin which continually threatened. As it was, during the first nine years of pioneer work the Community reduced the capital which had been contributed by the members from $107,000 to $67,000; but in the same time it improved its organization, developed important principles and measures, and started several businesses, some of which have proved fairly remunerative."
Their dwellings are now commodious brick structures, heated with steam, and well furnished. They have a large hall in their principal building capable of seating 600 persons. Here they have gatherings of the members every evening; sometimes to hear a lecture, sometimes for a musical or dramatic entertainment, sometimes to discuss matters of business which are of general interest; more often for familiar conversation or religious worship.
Their central dwellings are surrounded with well-kept lawns and flower-gardens, which are the delight of visitors and excursionists from villages near or remote. As many as 2,000 persons have thronged their grounds in a single day.
The Community library includes about 5,000 volumes.
The Community schools are taught by their own teachers.
Tobacco and intoxicating liquors are tabooed.
Such of the Community women as prefer, wear the short dress and short hair, but these fashions are not obligatory.
The Community was formerly noted for its peculiar social practices; but in August, 1879, a change was made in the society in this respect, and at the present time they "marry and are given in marriage" like other people.
These Communists have long enjoyed the reputation of being good neighbors and citizens, and thoroughly trustworthy in all business transactions; and now that the single avowed cause of offense is removed, their growth and prosperity will be welcomed by all classes.
The Third Church of Lenox, located at Ridgeville. On the 2d day of May, 1826, the Onondaga Presbytery, pursuant to adjournment, met at the school-house on Beach Ridge in the north part of Lenox in order to take into consideration the expediency of forming a church in this vicinity. After taking the subject into consideration, the Presbytery concluded to form and organize a church by a committee from the Presbytery on June 6th, 1826. The committee appointed by the Presbytery was composed of the following named gentlemen: Revs. Hezekiah N. Woodruff, Roger Adams and Hutchins Taylor.
The 6th of June the church was organized with the following constituent members: Deacon Stephen Northrop and Rhoda his wife, Stephen Northrop Jr., and Sally his wife, David Northrop and Esther, his wife, Asa Child, Anna Northrop, Abigail Stoel, Zebina Tryon and Emilia his wife, Elijah Benton, Melancton Benton and Rhua his wife, Sophia Hood, James Whitney, Martin Benedict, Polly Cook, Chancy Richards and Susannah his wife, Daniel White, Chancy Gaston and Polly his wife, Noah White, and Frances his wife, Rufus Locke and Lydia his wife, Myra Bordwell, Sylvia Parnes, Eli Benton, Patty Duncan, Mindwell Roba and Joseph Beach; Rufus Locke was chosen clerk.
The following have been the succession of pastors as they appear on the book of records, together with the first date upon which their names appear therein: Revs. R. Adams, June 6, 1826; Samuel Kingsbury, Feb. 25, 1827; R. Adams, March 1, 1827; T. Pool, Dec. 9, 1829; R. Adams, March 14, 1831; Ezekiel T. Chapman, Dec. 21, 1831; R. Adams, April 25, 1832; Mr. Sullivan, Jan. 3, 1835; Wm. Goodelle, Oct. 8, 1835; David N. Barnes, March 25, 1856; Mr. Cooper, Aug. 29, 1836; Samuel Howe, March 20, 1837. From 1840 to 1878 the pulpit was supplied for part of the time by Revs. David Barnes, Dwight Scovell, P. O. Powers, Horton, Timothy Williston.
It was during this period that the church became very weak through dissension, and was a large share of the time without a pastor. February, 1878, Rev. W. S. Franklin supplied the church, and Feb. 1, 1880, Rev. S. Nelson, the present pastor, commenced his labors.
The earliest meetings of the society were held in a barn which stood a few rods west of the church, and afterwards they were held in the old school-house which now stands north of the church. When the present church edifice was built, about 1834, the Methodists fitted up the school-house for their worship; they however hold no services at present, and the old school-house that has witnessed so many of the early gatherings is fast approaching decay.
Jan. 9, 1827, it was voted to unite with the Onondaga Presbytery.
April, 1832, the name was changed to "The Presbyterian Church of Ridgeville."
C. B. Waterbury is the present clerk. The membership at present is 23, and the attendance at Sunday school about 40.
B. FRANKLIN CHAPMAN.
B. Franklin Chapman, was born in Clockville, Madison county, N. Y., March 24, 1817. His father, the late Col. Stephen Chapman, and his mother, Keturah Palmer, were born in Stonington, Conn., and emigrated with a large number of families from that locality in 1812, most of whom settled on "Palmer Hill," in the town of Lenox; but Col. Chapman located in Clockville. He and the late Joshua A. Spencer were mechanics, but were employed quite extensively in "pettyfogging" cases, and soon became adepts in their profession, and finally entered the law office of Gen. I. S. Spencer as students, and were admitted to the bar in 1822.
Col. Chapman was a strong, vigorous, energetic man, full of enterprise, liberal-and confiding. Through his efforts the first post-office was established in Clockville in 1814, and he was appointed the first postmaster, an office which he held (with a brief interval,) until he resigned in 1847. He reared a family of twelve children, five of whom survived him and are still living, Noyes P. Chapman, Wm. H. Chapman, Mary Ann, wife of Conrad G. Moot, Augustine, wife of Clinton L. Colton and Benjamin F. Chapman, the subject of this biography, who, from youth up, has ever been familiarly known as "Frank Chapman."
He was born with an active brain and strong muscle, a leader among the boys; whatever was to be done, he did it first and took the consequences afterwards. Much of the mischief in and out of the school house was laid to him, and he generally got the "lickings," and never grumbled.
On the death of his brother Stephen, in 1831, who had been previously admitted to the bar, his father decided to educate and make a lawyer of him. He assisted his father in making surveys; he readily took to mathematics and idolized a compass.
In the fall of 1834 he entered Stockbridge Academy; the next spring he entered the new Hudson River Seminary, where he was under the mathematical instruction of Prof. Ostrander. In the fall of 1835 he went to Manlius Academy and applied himself to the study of languages, and the next spring he followed his teacher, Mr. Burhans, in opening Fayetteville Academy, where he remained until he entered the Sophomore class in Hamilton College, at Clinton, August, 1836. In his Junior year he was one of the prize speakers, and was graduated in July, 1839, with one of the five honors---the Philosophical Oration.
He then entered the law office of his father, and in January, 1841, was admitted to the bar, and subsequently to the District, Circuit and Supreme Court of the United States. By his indomitable industry and perseverance he acquired a large practice, and soon became one of the leading members of the bar in his county.
He married Miss Huldah Wilcox, daughter of Deacon Alanson Wilcox, November 10, 1841; they had three children---Elmer, who died at the age of two years; Mattie, who married Captain Charles E. Remick, of Hardwick, Vt., who was then engaged in business in Boston, and subsequently was with the firm of E. S. Jeffray & Co., New York, and now is established in business at Oneida, N. Y. Stephen, who studied law with his father, then entered and was graduated from the Albany Law School, and was admitted to the bar in May, 1874, and is now in company with his father.
In April, 1880, he left the old homestead, where he and his children were born, and with his entire family moved into his new house in Oneida. It is a model residence, a view of which will be found in this volume.
In politics he is a pronounced democrat, and has ever been one of the influential democratic orators in Central New York. In early life he was connected with schools, holding various town offices, such as school inspector, commissioner, town superintendent, supervisor, also district attorney and postmaster.
In 1861, at the breaking out of the Rebellion, Mr. Chapman lead off with the first war speech in the county, and no patriot ever worked harder than he during that long and memorable struggle.
He has had large experience as a surveyor and engineer; and his services have been sought for by the most eminent lawyers in Central New York in suits involving the title to real estate and water powers.
To-day he stands erect and has the vigor and step of youth; a constant and hard worker, enjoying as he ever has good health, blessed with a constitution capable of great endurance; endowed with a vigorous mind, entertaining and instructive in his conversation interspersed with mirth and anecdote.
Amid all the turmoils of life he has found time to devote to literary works; he has a model library, and for years has been accustomed to deliver popular lectures on various subjects, and among them, "Washington and its defenses," "Harper's Ferry," and especially his late and very popular lecture on "Salem Witchcraft" which has been received with great favor, throughout the country.
The Jackson Citizen (Mich.,) in speaking of it says: "Mr. Chapman is a lawyer of superior ability, and his word pictures of that terrible delusion were as vivid as the closest acquaintance could make them. The audience seemed to be completely fascinated by his eloquence, and were swayed at his will as he de-scribed in graphic language those terrible scenes through which the people of Salem passed in that fated period."
M. M. HESS.
M. M. Hess was born in the town of Fenner, Madison Co., N. Y., on the 24th day of March, 1837. He was the youngest of six children, having two brothers and three sisters, all of whom are living, and who are from fifteen to twenty-three years older than himself. Mr. Hess lived with his parents until he was twenty-two years of age, with the exception of a few terms attending school and four or five terms teaching. Since that time he has been engaged in mercantile and commission business. For fifteen years he has carried on business in Canastota, N. Y., where he was thoroughly and favorably known as the "cash man" for everything the farmer brought to market.
Mr. Hess was married at the age of twenty-five to Sarah E. Haynes, of Preble, Cortland Co., N. Y. His father, David Hess, was born and reared in the town of Rensselaerville, Albany Co., being of a family of nine children that lived to an aggregate age of over seven hundred and fifty years; was married at the age of twenty-one to Prudence Shaw, one of seven children of John Shaw, a British deserter in the Revolutionary war, who served our country in a number of hard battles and until the time of peace. They then moved to Fenner, Madison county, and bought a farm where they owned and occupied the same until their death, both living to a ripe old age; he being largely interested and very successful in agriculture and politics for twenty-seven years, filling the most important offices of the town.
In Middletown, Conn., Sept. 10, 1784, was born David Coe. He was one of a family of nine children, five of whom settled in Leyden, Lewis county. When David was eleven years old, his parents, with four of the nine children, removed to Clinton, Oneida county. The country round about was then a wilderness. Being closely employed in the work of clearing up the farm, David's school privileges were very limited. At the age of 22 he married Orra, daughter of Hananiah Ellinwood. She was born in Brimfield, Mass., in 1789. In 1807, they moved from Clinton, and settled in Smithfield, on the farm now owned by Duane W. Coe. During the time Mr. Coe was clearing off a piece of land near the road, the new couple lived in a log house which stood farther back. On the new clearing, where the present house now stands, a comfortable dwelling was erected. With the assistance of his boys and other help the farm was cleared up, much improved, and additions made from time to time until he had a large farm. In the year 1851 he retired from active business, removing to Oneida, where his health gave way, and he died in 1854, aged 70 years. His widow in a few years removed back to the farm; where she died in 1869, aged 80 years. David Coe and his wife are remembered as exemplary, kind, honest and beloved by all. They rest in the Peterboro Cemetery.
David and Orra Coe were the father and mother of the subject of this sketch, Albert E. Coe, who was born in Smithfield, April 22, 1808, the eldest of nine brothers and sisters, viz: Sanford M., Caroline M., Eliashib E., Eli A., Mary C., George W., John W., and J. Henrietta. The second and ninth named above are dead, six live in Madison county and one in Onondaga county.
At seven years of age Albert began going to the country school held in Captain Raymond's house, following marked trees through the woods in company with a neighboring boy of about his own age. This continued, and in log houses and shanties, until the school-house was built in Siloam, (then Ellinwood's Hollow.) Here he continued going to school, chiefly during the winter, as the farm work kept him at home during the summers. At the age of six years he witnessed the execution of Mary Antoine, in Peterboro, and nine years later, that of her father, Abram Antoine, in Morrisville. Both executions were public. Thousands of people were present.
Albert lived at home until he was 21 years old, when he married Mary, daughter of Amos Bridge, of that town, in her nineteenth year. They were married Jan. 1st, 1829. Albert then bought the farm next west of his birth place, moved upon, cleared and improved it, until it was known as one of the best farms in Smithfield. Just as life seemed to be opening brightly for them, death took Mrs. Coe from her husband's side, May 15th, 1844, leaving him with five children to mourn her loss. He remained on the farm with the children, and in May, 1845, married Charlotte T. Read, daughter of John A. Read, of New Hartford, Oneida county, formerly of Massachusetts. Mr. Coe still continued to improve his farm until 1852, when he rented it and removed to Oneida, occupying a house he had built the year previous. Here he has since lived, engaged chiefly in buying and selling real estate. In 1853, he erected a brick block for renting purposes, which was at that time the most prominent building in the place.
In September, 1874, his wife Charlotte died, leaving five children and husband in affliction. Four of the twelve children rest with their mothers in Glenwood Cemetery, viz: Sarah C., an infant, Frankie L., and Ralph W. There are now living Orra E. Benedict, A. Wells, Ledyard W., now in Milwaukee, David R., Eddie W., Mary C., Willie S., and Hattie S., one in Oneida and Utica. Albert E. Coe, with the help of two of his sons, has been for the last ten years, and is now in the mercantile business in Oneida, Madison county, in the block built by himself.
CHAUNCEY H. HALE.
Chauncey H. Hale, whose portrait appears herewith, was a son of Jesse and Mary Hale, of Vernon, and was born in Westmoreland, Oneida county, in 1820. When very young he removed with his parents to Vernon, in which place he perfected himself as a jeweler, being very successful in this business both in Vernon and afterwards in Fayetteville, Onondaga county, from which place Mr. Hale removed in 1870 to Canastota, having purchased the Pratt House but just completed and one of the finest hotels on the Central Railroad, remaining there until the house was burned, April i9th, 1873, doing a good business and being very popular, both as host and citizen. After the fire Mr. Hale built the hotel now (1880) occupied by H. Lewis.
In the year 1857 Mr. Hale married for his second wife Sophia D. Miller, second daughter of H. A. Miller, of Great Bend, Jefferson county, N. Y., and to whom he was greatly attached. Mr. Hale died May 5, 1874, his loss regretted by a large circle of friends and deeply mourned by his surviving partner.
His life was a busy and active one, and by his cheerful disposition and generous warm-heartedness he drew around him many warm friends. His hand was ever ready and his purse open to help those who needed help.
Mrs. Hale, widow of Chauncey H. Hale, is very pleasantly situated in Canastota, giving to her husband's memory all the love and tenderness that she lavished so freely upon him while living, trusting that when she too is called they will be re-united where partings never come.
In the year 1806, Thomas Lawrence emigrated to America from England, and settled with his father William Lawrence, at Clockville, Madison Co. Thomas Lawrence was at that time twelve years of age. He died in the year 1870, at the close of a long, reputable and useful life. He had become extensively known throughout the county, having business relations with most of the farming inhabitants in the manufacture and sale of plaster for fertilizing purposes. He was a zealous and consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and missed no opportunity of advancing the cause.
George Lawrence is a son of Thomas Lawrence and was born at Clockville, in the year 1829. At the age of twenty-one, he purchased a farm in the town of Fenner, Madison Co., whereon he resided seven years. He then removed to his present farm. He is now extensively engaged in the culture of hops, and also in connection with his brother, U. N. Lawrence, who resides on an adjoining farm, in the manufacture of malt. The brothers purchase their barley chiefly in Chicago, Ill., and their malt finds a market in New York City and Brooklyn.
Mr. Lawrence is one of the stable, enterprising men who do much in any community to give it character and progress.
CAPT. DANIEL LEWIS.
Capt. Daniel Lewis, the subject of this biographical sketch, died in Canastota, Feb. 23, 1872, aged 75 years. Capt. Lewis was a son of one of the pioneer settlers of Central New York. His parents removed from Vermont to Washington Co., N. Y., and about the beginning of the present century, came into the vicinity of Canastota. The life of Capt. Lewis was a continual scene of activity and success. At an early day here he swung the ax in the forests when the Indian's trail was the only path.
By his untiring activity and unfailing integrity he arose step by step to positions of trust and honor. He served the State efficiently on its canals and railroads. He became an owner of property, and on the lands then obtained he laid out streets and built residences. He was the projector of village improvements that will help to keep his memory precious for many years to come.
He was twice married, and leaves the companion of his last choice to mourn the loss of one, to whom she was nurse, adviser, helpmate and friend. His benefactions were many through life, though of an unostentatious nature. He was ever a true friend of the Christian church, and in his latter years a faithful member of the Methodist Episcopal Church in this place. During a precious revival here occurring during the pastorate of Rev. Selah Stocking, he united with the church, as also his companion, who for many years had been a possessor of Christian faith. Every pastor who has known him here has reason to be thankful for the care he has given for their welfare, and the readiness with which he sustained all church enterprises. God had dealt liberally with him and he gave liberally in return. The church deeply feels his loss, friends mourn his departure, and the country at large feels his absence. His last sickness was brief but painful, his death calm, and peaceful---his dying testimonies wondrously clear and transparent. "I cannot see you" he said to his wife, "but I can see Jesus." "He is my Saviour, I can trust him." We that saw him die felt to say "Let me die the death of the righteous."
Thomas Barlow is the son of Thomas Barlow, late of the town of Duanesburgh, Schenectady county, N. Y., and was born in that town March 14, 1807.
His education was academical; studied law with Hon. Arphaxed Loomis and E. P. Hulburt, of Little Falls, Selleck Boughton, of Rochester, Aaron Hackley, of Herkimer, and G. B. Judd of Frankport.
In July term of the Supreme Court of 1831 he was admitted as attorney, and in July term, 1834, to the degree of Counsellor of that court; January 26, 1835, he was admitted solicitor and counsellor of the Court of Chancery. In September, 1831, he located in his profession in Canastota, Madison county; married for his first wife Cornelia G. Rowe of that place, and second, Charlotte Spriggs, of Floyd, Oneida county. He has six sons-George, Edward, Eugene, Albert, Henry and Flandrau.
In the fall of 1842 he was appointed Superintendent of the schools of Madison county; was First Judge of the Court of Common Pleas of that county from Feb. 2, 1843, to the first day of January, 1848; and State Senator from Jan. 1, 1844, to Jan. 1, 1848.
In May, 1841, he was made a corresponding member of the New York Historical Society, in the city of New York.
He was granted the honorary degree of Master of Arts by the Board of Trustees of Hamilton College, in July, 1851.
In July, 1853, he was elected a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and in March, 1854, he was elected corresponding member of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin.
April 8, 1854, he was made a corresponding member of the New Orleans Academy of Sciences, and granted a diploma, and in June, 1862, he was elected a like member of the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences.