By an act of the Legislature of the State of New York, passed in the year 1793, a certain tract of land lying between the Delaware And Susquehanna rivers was erected into a township called Franklin, situate in and being a part of the county of Otsego. The first town meeting was ordered to be held at the house of Sluman Wattles on the first Tuesday in April of the same year. This tract of land was, prior to April 10th, 1792, a part of the town of Harpersfield. The State Gazetteer says: "The township of Franklin, embracing thirty thousand acres, was patented February 26th, 1770, with the usual powers of a township, and a quitrent of two and sixpence for every one hundred acres annually. The patentees were Thomas Warton, Reese Meredith and twenty-eight others. It was named from Temple Franklin, a natural son of Dr. Benjamin Franklin." This was probably the reason the town was called Franklin, as the name had been acquired at the time of the patent. Walton was taken off of this tract in 1797, and a part was restored in 1801. A part of Meredith was taken off in 1800, Sidney in 1801 and a part of Otego, as "Huntsville," in 1822.
The town lies upon the north border of the county, west of the center. Its surface is a hilly upland, broken by deep, and narrow valleys. The principal streams are Ouleout creek, flowing west through the northern part of the town, an its two tributaries from the south, Croton creek and Handsome brook. The soil upon the hills is a shaly loam, underlaid by hardpan, and in the valleys a gravelly loam and alluvium. The word Ouleout or Olehoudt is of Indian origin, and said to signify "rapid waters". Judge Wattles said that the signification of the word was "leafy water," and that the steam was so called from the abundance of maple leaves that fell into the water in the autumn. In the great Indian purchase, of two hundred and fifty thousand acres, of June 14th, 1768, this stream was termed the Au-ly-ou-let. Its principal brand, Handsome brook, was so named by Jude Wattles himself.
But little is known of the early history of the Ouleout valley previous to 1784, except that it was the place of annual resort of different tribes of Indians, who came there in their various fishing, hunting and predatory excursions.
The north and southeastern parts of the town are situated on the Whitesborough patent, the central part on the Lake and Clark patents, the western on the Peter Van Brugh Livingston patent, the southwestern part on the Clark, Leroy and Bayard, Walton, Ross and Babington patents. Two other small patents are situated in the northern central part, viz. The Quackenbush and Howell patents; Franklin village is located on the Clark patent. In 1835 the population of the town was 2,951; in 1840, 3,025; 1845, 3,007; 1850, 3,087; 1855, 3,186; 1860, 3,3308; 1865, 3,156; 1870, 3,283; 1875, 3,002. The number of voters in the town if 861, of which number forty have been naturalized.
The first settler in the Town was Sluman Wattles, who came in the early summer of 1784 to examine, survey and lay out in lots a tract of land, extending from a line near the Susquehanna river, southwardly to the Delaware river, afterward and now called Livingston's patent. It appears that Mr. Wattles had some interest in this patent then, and afterward he was known to be part owner of it. While there at that time he selected a place for himself and built a log cabin; the covering or roof, as well as the floor, was composed of elm bark. This log house was situated about four rods west of the present residence of Mr. William Taylor. The land which Mr. Wattles (or Judge Wattles, as he was afterward familiarly called) surveyed was a part of a tract of land purchased by Colonel John and Alexander Harper of the Indians, and afterward sold by them, or a part of it, to a company composed of one Livingston, a Peter VanBrugh, one or both of the Harpers, and another party, whose name has been forgotten. This company petitioned the Sate for a grant of a patent and obtained it. The land was then divided into lots of two hundred and forty-three acres each, each partner of the company being entitled to one lot. The survey and division were then filed in the office of the Secretary of State, and each proprietor received from the State separate deeds called "patent deeds". Mr. Wattles was at that time a fourth owner of the patent, he having bought out one of the original proprietors. According to the contract the sum of money due the State was to be paid at a specified time or forfeit the grant. Judge Wattles depended upon one of the Harpers to pay this at the time, but it not being paid Wattles went to him and told him he (Harper) and ruined him, as he had been at great expense in the survey and otherwise, and he should lose the land. What to do he did not know. Fortunately the Legislature was then sitting in New York, and thinking it might consider his situation he went to Governor Clinton and related the circumstances. The governor asked him if he had the money due the State, and learning he had, they went before the Legislature or a committee. The govern state the situation of Mr. Wattles, and an act was passed reinstating him in the contract. This is probably the manner in which Judge Wattles became owner of the farm where he located, now known as the William A. Taylor farm.
In 1785 Judge Wattles returned to his family, who were then residing near where the present village of Bloomville is situated, and moved them to his new home on the Ouleout. The family consisted of his wife and three children. His brother, John Wattles, came with them and brought an infant child most of the way in his arms. This child was afterward the wife of Colonel Dewey, of Sidney. They came down the Delaware through the place where Delhi village now stands, to Platner's brook, then followed an Indian trail or path up the brook across Hamden Hill, and down West Handsome brook to the place where Thomas Ward now lives, formerly occupied by Deacon Azel Bowers; thence across the hill, striking the old or West Walton road a little west of the old tannery. They came on horseback, and their household goods were brought with them in the same manner. While on their journey they encamped one night in the woods, arriving at their new home the next day in the afternoon.
The Indians claiming some title to the lands o which Judge Wattles had settled, or to the patent he had surveyed, it became necessary to negotiate with them; and he and they held a council on the banks of the Ouleout near his house, and made a treaty, the preliminaries of which were, that the Indians should have a barrel of rum, and that they should give up their knives and weapons to Mr. Wattles while they held their pow-wow. This meeting was held under the wide-spreading branches of a large elm tree that stood on the bank or edge of the flat, directly in the real of the residence of Mr. Edwin Taylor. Here the treaty was arranged, the rum drunk, they received their pay, and left after having, as they expressed it, "a good time." They are believed to have been a part of the Delaware tribe.
Judge Wattles was also a magistrate at that time, for a large territory, including the present towns of Franklin, Sidney, Masonville and several others; and on the organization of the county of Delaware, in 1797, he held the office of county judge.
Judge Wattles was born in 1852, and was of Scotch descent. The place of his birth is unknown, but as he resided at Lebanon, Conn., at the time of his marriage, that town was probably is native place. His first wife was a native of the same town, and her maiden name was McColl. She faithfully shared the toils and privations of her husband; was the mother of eight children, and succeeded in giving such direction to their minds as to render them an honor to their parents, an ornament to society and a blessing to the world. The following are the names of the children of Judge Wattles, viz: Caroline, Sluman, John, Simon, Sally, Betsey, Chandler and Nathaniel. Sluman settled in the town, and on the farm now occupied by Mr. Abner Loveland. A large willow tree, which formerly stood in the highway near the house, grew from a cane which he walked home with from Philadelphia after "going down the river" upon a raft in the spring, and stuck into the ground after his return. When a small boy he used to be sent on horseback to Schoharie, and in later days to Harpersfield, "to mill," with grain and for provisions. Wolves were very numerous, and used to render night hideous and often frightful by their howling, especially to the lone residents of the forest, and those so unfortunate as to be obliged to encamp or remain in the woods at night; as was no uncommon occurrence when upon long journeys, it being impossible to advance or recede without danger or losing the way, owing to the slight trail or paths.
After the removal of the Wattles family to their home on the Ouleout, it was about six months before Mrs. Wattles again saw the face of a white woman. At that time a family was moving past, and she went out to see them, "so as to again see a white woman," as she expressed it.
In the year 1800 Judge Wattles sold his farm to Aaron Dewey, Esq., of Westfield, Mass., with the view of going west. He then moved his family to a place situated about two miles above the present village of Unadilla until prepared to go. While there Mrs. Wattles took the small-pox, as did all the family except her husband, who had had it a few years previous, while on business at New York. Mrs. Wattles and her son Chandler died, and, to prevent contagion, were buried at night in a lone place near where they died, and without any monument to mark their place of rest, which to this day is unknown. Her age was fifty-two years.
Judge Wattles afterward married again, and acquired a handsome competency before his death. His remains were deposited in the graveyard near where he died, at the Union church in Sidney, and a respectable marble tombstone has been erected to his memory. As the pioneer settler, and one who for so long a time occupied a conspicuous position in the public business and political affairs of this town and region, the life and character of Sluman Wattles are deserving the careful attention of every resident of the town, and his own and the early history of the town were most deeply and intimately interwoven. At the time Judge Wattles moved his family into the Ouleout valley, he was accompanied by his brothers John and Roger, and his sisters, Sarah and Caroline. John settled on the place now occupied by Harvey Jackson, at the junction of the north and south Ouleout roads, where he resided for many years. He afterward moved to Steuben county, where he died in 1836. Roger, the youngest of the three, settled on East Handsome brook' afterward moved to Geneseo, Livingston county, and died there in 1848. Caroline married Judha Bartlett, and was the mother of two children, Sluman (Deacon Bartlett) and Caroline. Sarah, the other sister, married Daniel Bissell, and was the mother of a large family.
Nathan Edgerton, one of the pioneer settlers of the town, moved into the Ouleout valley in the year 1787, at the age of twenty-five years. He came from Franklin, Conn., accompanied by his wife, to Harpersfield; thence by the old Indian trail to the place where he located, on the farm now owned by his son Hon. John Edgerton. In making the journey from Harpersfield Mr. Edgerton encamped for the night in the pine woods near the place now occupied by Charles Stoddard, in West Meredith. His canty household effects were loaded on a sled which was drawn by a yoke of oxen. Mrs. Edgerton made the journey horseback, coming through from Harpersfield in one day. The first house, a log cabin, was located nearly opposite the present residence, on the other side of the road. Here, in the wilderness, where scarcely a clearing had been made, away from the din of the settlements, Nathan Edgerton went to work to make a home for himself and family. They were frequently visited by the Indians in their trips up and down the valley, but were never molested by them. At the time of the Harpersfield treaty a large number of Indians passed by the cabin and one, having killed a deer near where John Lloyd's grist-mill now stands, came to the cabin door and borrowed a kettle to cook the meat in. Mrs. Edgerton loaned them the kettle, but was somewhat surprised to see them, after skinning the deer, cook the whole carcass, entrails and al, in the vessel. At another time the Indians came to the cabin and wanted some pork, but the family had none to spare, and, in order to prevent them from getting it, Mrs. Edgerton went and seated herself on the cover of the barrel, where she remained until they left the place.
Previous to the building of the Sidney grist-mill the settlers of the valley were obliged to go to Cherry Valley for their flour, and Mr. John Edgerton says his father would then get a canoe and paddle it up the river to Cooperstown, take a bushel of rye on his back, carry it to Wattles Ferry; then take the grain, carry it to Cherry Valley, wait till it was ground, then return by the same route, usually being a whole week making the journey. Mr. Edgerton was the father of eight children, viz: Erastus, Thomas, Sally, Nathan Guerdon, John, Henry and Polly, who died in infancy. Sally married Erastus Waters. The children are all dead, excepting John, who resides on the "old homestead.." Nathan Edgerton, sen., was an enterprising business man, and did much toward encouraging the settlement of the town by building mills, shops, etc., and assisting the early settlers. His son Thomas was the first white child born in the town. He was born April 1st, 1787, and lived in the town till he grew to manhood; then was married, and moved to Geneseo, Livingston county; he afterward went to Cattaraugus county where he died in 1831. Nathan Edgerton, sen., died August 4th, 1822, aged 60 years. Erastus, the eldest son, was born before they moved from Connecticut.
Daniel Root, an early settler and a prominent resident of the town, came from Hebron, Conn., to the present town of Franklin in the summer of 1791; and after examining the land decided to locate in the new western country. He cleared a small piece of land and made arrangements for building a house on the farm now owned by Augustus Waters, believing that would be the most eligible site for the settlement or village, as it was then near the center of the town. From a diary which he kept we make the following extracts:
"Wednesday, Oct. 12, 1791, set out for Hebron and arrived to my family there Monday, Oct. 17. Oct. 26, set out with my wife and three daughters for Hamden (now Franklin), and arrived Nov. 1st. Nov. 10. I returned to Hebron. Monday, Jan. 16, 1792, set out on our journey from Hebron, with team of oxen; I had Edward and Theodore with me. We arrived at Aaron Chamberlin's (now Elijah White's) Saturday the 28th inst., where I left them and came home. Monday the 30th inst., went to Chamberlin's and brought home the boys with the team. And now the whole family are together, for the first time since Feb. 15, 1791, when Daniel and Edward left Heron in order to accompany Jesse Foote and family to Hamden. "Saturday, May 5-Last Tuesday night Jonathan Webster and family tarried here while moving to their new home.
"June 20, 1792 - Last Tuesday was collected at John Eell's, for the first time, the military company under command of Capt. Samuel Johnson.
"July 21-Last Saturday Rev. Mr. Hamilton, a Baptist preacher, came into the settlement, and has preached every day since.
"Sept 8-Wednesday last came to see us Brothers Ebenezer Root and wife, and Eliphaz Loveland. "Thursday, Sept. 22-Snowy morning; snow covered the ground; made an awful appearance for time of year.
"Oct. 7th-Finished chimney to-day.
"Oct. 27th- This fall passed by 200 head of oxen going to Philadelphia. "Saturday, Nov. 17-Finished work on road leading from Captain Johnson's to N. Wattles'.
"Dec. 15-This week we have got cut out a road to Esquire Wattle's.
"Jan.5,1793-Rev. Mr. Hamilton again in the place.
"Jan. 19-Last Tuesday was formed a Baptist church, in Hamden, by Brother Hamilton.
"April 6th-Last Tuesday attended the first town meeting ever held in the town of Franklin, at Esquire Wattle's.
"June 1st-Wednesday night tarried with us John Dewey and Joseph Kneeland.
"August 26th-Rev.. Mr. Huntington preached here.
"Oct. 12th-Last Sunday Rev. Mr. Huntington organized a church in Hamden, and this day at the Delaware.
"Nov. 16th-Attended the funeral of a young man named Wilmot, who died at Robert Freeman's-the fifth I have attended in the country.
"Feb. 10th, 1794-Arrived at the Ouleout to-day, with their families, Eliphaz Loveland and John Dewey.
"March 28th-Dry to-day; the fire ran in the woods and burnt over nearly thirty acres.
"Tuesday, April 1st-To-day town meeting held here.
"May 31st-Saw two quails in the woods; the first we have seen here.
"Oct. 24th-Attended the funeral of a child of Nathan Kellogg's.
"Nov. 3d-Attended funeral of Michael Goodrich, sen.
"Dec. 11th-Samuel Johnson's house was burned this day.
"Feb. 21st, 1795-This day died of the small-pox at the widow Smith's, a young man named Wilmot.
"April 11th-Four children drowned in Susquehanna the first of the week.
"Sept. 1st-Rev. John Porter, of the Kingdom of Ireland, preached in the society.
"Dec. 7th-Saturday morning, having heard of the death of Brother Solomon Root, I went to se his widow and children, and returned to-day. He died on the 2nd inst., and was buried the day after, in the woods." The following incident is still related about Mr. Root: The deacon, hearing an unusual noise in his hog-pen in the night, arose and quietly approached the pen, thinking no doubt some one was about to steal his porker. He leaned up against the pen, and looking over in; exclaimed, "Whar are you doing here!" At that instant an immense black bear reared up on his hind legs, and clapped the deacon on each side of his head with his fore paws, but without injuring him. The deacon at once hastily retreated in one direction, and the bear in another.
Abel Buell, another early settler, came from Old Lebanon, Conn., into the town in 1790, and chopped and cleared three acres of land, on the farm now occupied b y Thomas Hamilton, and formerly known as the "Sands farm." This clearing was on the east side of the brook, and about forty or fifty rods south-east of the present residence. He rolled up the body of a log-house and then returned to his home in the fall, where he remained through the winter.
In the following spring he came back, bringing his family, consisting of a wife and three children, with him, arriving at their new home the first day of March, 1791. As their log house had not been finished the fall previous, they stopped over Sunday with one Russell Clark, who had come out the year before and was located on the farm now owned by Charles Kittle. The route which Buell came in by was the Harpersfield trail or road, which was barely passable, and he brought his family and necessary household effects on an ox sled. He was also the possessor of a cow and cosset sheep, two valuable acquisitions to a frontiersman's effects. Like a majority of the settlers of the souther part of this town, Buell was a squatter, or, in other words, did not own the land; for at that date the real owners in many instances were no known, and settlers who went on to land as squatters were given the first privilege of purchasing. In 1791 Buell sold out his betterments to Eliphaz Loveland, from Marborough, Conn., for one hundred silver dollars, but retained possession of the same till the next spring. Buell then moved down to the farm now occupied by Sylvenus Shepherd, which he cleared up and occupied for nearly forty years. He was the father of eight children, of whom four are still living, viz. Eliza, Sally, the mother of H. A. Preston, Harriet, and Captain Harry, of Franklin village. Buell died in 1850, at the age of 84 years, and the remains of himself and wife were buried in the Baptist graveyard. His two brothers, Orrin and Hezekiah, came into the town in 1794, and settled on the hill near where William Hallock now resides. Many descendants of these three brothers still reside in the town. Asa, the eldest son of Abel Buell, a lad of eight years, was drowned in the Handsome brook soon after the arrival of the family in the town. His father and Reuben Spencer Smith, who then lived where Porter G. Northrup now resides, were making maple sugar on the hill near the place where the sugar bush of Mr. Hamilton is now located; they, wishing something from the house, sent Asa after it; he not returning in the usual time, search was made for him, and his dead body found under the log foot bridge which spanned the brook. This as probably the first drowning of a white person in the town, if not the first death. Smith, who was associated with Buell in making sugar, was the father of the late Reuben S. and Ray Smith, of Franklin village.
Eliphaz Loveland lived on the place which he purchased from Buell till the time of his death, which occurred August 28th, 1823. He was the father of four sons, viz. Eliphaz, Ashael, David and Hezekiah, and the maternal great grandfather of B. L. Bowers, of Franklin village.
Azel Bowers, the paternal grandfather of B. L. Bowers, came from Columbia county about 1794, and settled on the farm now owned by C. L. Kneeland. Here he resided for three years, when he purchased the "Bowers farm," consisting of one hundred and twenty acres, of a squatter named Captain Higbie. About the same time he married Rachael Kneeland. Mr. Bowers, in the year 1820, kept the largest dairy in the town, which consisted of seven cows, and made both butter and cheese, which he disposed of at Newburg. He was the father of two sons, Beriah and Azel G. Beriah lived on the farm after his father's death, which occurred in 1846. He moved to the village in 1856, where he died in 1864. Azel G. Died in Lycoming county, Pa.. In 1875, leaving one son, Charles A., who is now practicing law at Williamsport, Pa. Beriah left tow sons, Beriah L., who is still living, and John A., who died in 1874. Henry A., another son, died in 1847. Azel Bowers was a large and powerful man, his height was six feet three inches, and he weighed generally two hundred and fifty pounds. The following instance, related by his grandson, shows the strength which he possessed: While building a barn, which is now standing on the farm of Charles Kittle, he lifted a green oak beam, forty feet long and eight by ten inches square, and changed ends with it, without lowering it to the ground. Daniel Bowers, the father of Azel, came to the town in 1796, and resided with his son.
Of the many early settlers of this town probably none experienced the hardships and sufferings that were endured by David Ogden, who was for many years a resident of the town, and died at his residence near Croton village, and who remains lie beside those of his wife in the cemetery near that village. He was born at Fishkill, Dutchess county, in the year 1764. From this place, when he was a mere child, his parents removed to Saratoga county, and from thence to the wild and uninhabited regions of the Susquehanna valley, where they located on a farm, or made a clearing about two miles above the present village of Otego, which composed until the year 1822 a part of the town of Franklin. AT that time there were no roads, except the Indian trail or war path, which followed or ran parallel to the river.
Here the family remained two years, when the war broke out, on which account they with some other settlers filed up the valley to a place called Newtown Martain, where they remained on season and then went to Cherry Valley, where a fort had been erected to protect the settlers; the head of the family, with his twelve-year-old David, navigating a canoe up the Susquehanna, while Mrs. Ogden and a younger child drove the oxen and cow along the Indian trail beside the river. The reason Ogden's father fled was that Brant, who was then encamped at the mouth of the Unadilla river, had sent him word that if he did not immediately join the tory party, against the rebels, he would seize him and his property. This plan of Brant's was defeated by a friendly Indian, to whom Ogden had shown favors, who came to him in the night and apprised him of his danger, being obliged to travel all night to order to do it unknown to Brant. The next spring David entered the patriot army, in which his father was an orderly sergeant. While stationed at Fort Stanwix he, with seventeen others, was taken prisoner by Brant, and the party was driven off to Fort Niagara. Young Ogden became the slave of a squaw, but was at length taken to Oswego as waiter to a British officer. Here he made his escape with a comrade named Danforth, and they fled for their lives up the Oswego river, with their pursuers often but a few minutes behind By tremendous efforts they made good their escape to Fort Herkimer, on the Mohawk.
Mr. Ogden was also a soldier in the war of 1812, and at the battle of Queenstown was in the thickest of the fight, yet was not wounded, although two bullets passed through his clothing. He settled at Croton. David, his eldest son, was the father of Messrs. Chauncey, Linus and Ira Ogden. David Ogden, sen., died October 30th, 1840, aged 76 years; his wife February 2nd, 1849, aged 79 years.
Roger Case, sen. Came to the town of Franklin in 1792, arriving in the valley on the 3d day of March of that year. He came from Hebron, Conn., and as accompanied b y his wife and seven children-five boys, Asa, Noah, Roger, jr., Russell and Dudley; and two girls, Molly and Jerusha. Molly afterward became the wife of Daniel Mann, and was the mother of twenty children, of whom fourteen lived to grow up. Captain Harvey Mann, aged 81 years, of Franklin village, Mrs. Polly Miller, aged 84 years, and Erastus, are still living.
The family were about twenty days moving from Connecticut; they came with a span of horses and pleasure sleigh. Mr. Case also brought with him four yoke of oxen, two sleds, four cows, and sixteen sheep, of which the wolves caught nearly one-half the next winter. On their way they stopped for a night at a log tavern at the head of Elk creek, kept by a Mr. Barrett. The next night they stayed at a tavern kept by a man named Bramhall, at the place where Nathan Stilson afterward resided. They went the next day as far as General Aaron Chamerlain's, who had a log house on the farm owned by Elijah White. After staying a few days here, they drove on their cattle and sheep, carrying all the hay they could procure, which was only one ton. Half of it was lost on the trees that overhung the rude road, which led to the lace where they finally settled, which is now known as North Franklin, but until within a few years has been called "Case Settlement." They stopped temporarily at Deacon Turner's, who had a log house near the Ansel Ford place, on which site the handsome residence of Hon. Samuel F. Miller now stand. The place upon which Mr. Case Settled was subsequently owned by Abijah Seeley, and afterward by William A. Miller, the father of Samuel F. Miller, who now owns the premises.
There were at this time only two frame houses in the whole town. One of them was a tavern kept by a Mr. Asa Turner, an it is now owned and occupied by Mrs. M. J. Loveland. The other was then owned by Judge Wattles, but at the present time it belongs to Mr. William Taylor. At this date (1792), there was but one house between Bramhall's tavern, and General Chamberlin's. That was a small log house on the farm now owned by Mr. Ira Ogden, but for many years the property of Alexander Smith.
The farm now owned by Elijah White was cleared by General Aaron Chamberlin, who settled there in the year 1789, and was the father of fifteen children.
The lot now used as the Ouleout Valley Cemetery was cleared by General Chamberlin, and the first crop sown there was wheat. A short time after he had sown a small part of the field, Mrs. Chamberlin, who was alone at the time, heard in the night a panther tearing up the soil or digging up the wheat. She rose from her bed, took a firebrand from the fire place and went out into the clearing and drove the panther into the woods.
At the time of Chamberlin's arrival he had but one child, an infant daughter, named Catherine, who afterward married William Everett, who was the father of Mrs. John Edgerton. The house now occupied by Sherman Barnes and the one occupied by Miss Adaline Scott were built by Mr. Everett prior to 1805. Among the early settlers were: James Follett, Alexander Smith, Daniel and Chauncey, sons of Enos Parker, Moses Clark, Asa Turner, Gad Merrick, Hugh Thompson, Ephraim McCall, Turner and Daniel Clarke, Solomon Green, John Dewey and Sons, Joseph Waters, Daniel Root, Captain Little, Jonathan Webster, John McClennon, Jonathan Birge and many others. Most of these persons and their families were residents prior to 1795. Joseph Waters came in 1798. He came from Hebron, Conn., and was the owner of an ox team and a team of horses, with which he moved his effects to his new home. They came in by the Harpersfield route, the usual if not the only route from the New England States to this section, and the one usually taken by the settlers form Connecticut. Waters purchased a farm on the hill now known as "Stronghill". The family, consisting of wife and eight children, were entertained by Captain Parker till a log house could be built on their own land. This house stood on the rise of ground a few rods north of the present residence of Spencer Sherman. McClennon, Webster, Little, Parker and Birge, the father of the venerable Mrs. Coleman, who is now living at the age of 95 years, were settled in that part of the town at that time, and their descendants are still residents of that vicinity. The following incidents are related in connection with the Waters family, showing the wildness of the county at that time (1798).. On morning, while the women were engaged in washing at a spring near the house, a large black bear came into the clearing and carried off a young pig, in spite of the cries of the women, who disputed his ownership. At another time, Joseph, the eldest son, had been sent to mill with grain to be ground into flour. The mill was located on the Ouleout, and on the same site now owned by Daniel Miller and used for mill purposes. Joseph was not able to get his grist ground till after dark, and loading the same on the backs of a pair of horses, he started them in the path wihc leads from the mill this home and all the way through the forest. When about half way through the woods his horses became frightened by the wolves suddenly coming into the path in front of them; they turned around, threw off their loads, and came near running over Joseph, who was following them in the path. He caught them, succeeded in quieting them, reloaded his grist, and reached home in safety. The wolves disappeared in the woods.
Timothy Jones, a brother-in-law of Joseph Waters, came into town in 1798, and cut and cleared three acres of land on the farm now owned by George Harris, at Merrickville; but becoming homesick he abandoned the land, and mounting an old pacing horse which he brought with him returned to Connecticut, as some of the old settlers say without once dismounting, so anxious was he to see old Hebron. This clearing was known for many years as "Tim's clearing", and was frequently vilified by hunters, who resorted there to kill deer, it being a place frequently visited by these animals for a feeding ground.
Captain Little, a noted wolf hunter, usually trapped and hunted in this locality every winter, and killed a large number of wolves, bears, and deer each season, these animals being unusually plenty in this region. One morning Mr. Little went out to examine his traps, and not returning as usual, search was made, and his body was found in a ravine near where A. H. Grant now lives, partially devoured by the wolves. Jost Wilde, A Dutchman, living over on the east side of the Susquehanna, used to come to Franklin to pay his taxes before the division of the town occurred. Coming as usual one fall it was found that his name had been omitted from the assessment roll; consequently he had no taxes to pay, and he was so informed, upon which he became very angry and exclaimed that "te tamn Yankees was trying to cheat him out of his taxes!"
Robert Miller came from Lyme, Conn., in 1803, and purchased the premises now owned by William A. Dewey. There was a log cabin there then, that had been previously occupied by a squatter. Mr. Miller paid for his farm in Spanish silver dollars, which he brought with him in his saddle-bags. There was but a small clearing, and the house stood on the lower side of the road from the present residence. His family consisted of wife and four children; afterward four children were born to them. Marvin married Polly Mann; Phebe married a man named Curtiss; Harriet married a Scott; Robert married Rubie Murray; Eliza Ann married an Abell, and moved to Ohio. The names of the remaining children were George, Almira, and Anson S., who resides in the village.
Russell Foote settled in 1802 on the farm now owned by Joe Metcalf; was the only man on the creek at that date and till 1820 but what had a large family of children.
The farm now owned by David Foote was settled in 1804, by a man named Scallenger, and directly afterward occupied by one Phillips.
Abial Drake settled in the town, in the vicinity were his two sons now reside, in 1810. Daniel Chamberlin settled on the farm he now resides on in 1818.
The place now occupied by Jacob Gillett was settled by his father, Major Joe Gillet, in 1801. In 1802 he built a frame house, which is still standing on the far, and is used as a hog pen. His eldest daughter, Lydia, was the wife of Silas Smith and the mother of a large family.
William Taylor, of this town, was born at West Stockbridge, Mass., November 3d, 1784, and moved to Rensalerville when a boy, thence to New Durham. In 1808 he came to Franklin and purchased of Aaron Dewey, Esq. A farm and cloth works. This farm was the one settled on by Sluman Wattles, and is still the residence of Mr. Taylor, who, though ninety-six years old, is yet able to do considerable work. His brothers Benajah, age 92 years, and Bryant, aged 76 years, are still living; also his sister, Mrs. Abial Phelps, at the age of eighty. Giles, A brother, died in 1879, aged 87 years, and Harry, another brother, in 1876, aged 82 years. All of the above named parties were or are residents of the town.
Ephraim McCall, an early settler, came from Lebanon, Conn., about 1789, and settled on the farm now owned by Chauncey Ogden. It is said that the first apples ever grown in the town grew from an apple tree which is now standing in the garden west of Mr. Ogden's house. Mr. McCall and his two sons, Ira and Elihu, were prominent men in the early history of the town, and held many offices of trust in the town and church. Mrs. M. M. Hine was a daughter of Elihu McCall.
The three eldest native born residents of the town still living are Harvey Man, aged 81 years, Harman Dewey, 80 years, and John Edgerton, 80 years. There is but one house in Franklin village but what Mr. Edgerton recollects seeing built; that is the Waterbury house, now owned by Mrs. Lois Barnes.
Russell Foote was born in the town of Franklin, on the 14th of December, 1810. His father, Elias Foote, was a native of New London, Conn., and was of English descent. He was a sailor, and made several voyages to Spain and the West Indies on board of ships engaged in the mercantile service. In the year 1802, in company with his brother, Russel Foote, he came to the town of Franklin, and purchased the farm now occupied by Joel Metcalf. A short time after his arrival he married Sally Tracy, an energetic young woman of English descent, whose parents were pioneer settlers in the county. A few years after his settlement in the town he sold his interest in the farm to his brother, and purchased a farm in Otsego county, on the Susquehanna river.
Russel Foote, the subject of this sketch, was not born until the removal of the family to the Susquehanna. He was the eldest child of the family, which consisted of four sons and three daughters. The early years of his life were spent at home, performing the duties which usually devolve upon the eldest child. At the age of nine years he left the paternal fireside and went to reside with his uncle, Russel Foote, who was still living on the Ouleout. There he remained until he was sixteen years of age. He then apprenticed himself to a Mr. Brown, a carriage manufacturer, for the purpose of learning the trade; and remained with him until he arrived at manhood, or became of age. He then sought and found work as a journeyman, working for about eight years in various places in Tioga county, N.Y., at Nashville, Tenn., and in other places. His integrity as a man, and ability as a superior workman, found him plenty of work at good prices.
In 1838 he entered into partnership with his former employer, Mr. Brown, and carried on the business near the place where he now resides. In 1840 he purchased his partner's interest in the business, also a farm of ninety acres, on which he has since resided; carrying on both interests with considerable profit, until a few years, since, when he relinquished the wagon making business, devoting his whole time to the duties of his farm and family.
In April, 1842, he was married to Sylvia E. Loveland, of Franklin, a daughter of Benjamin K. and Clarissa Loveland, who were honest, industrious farmers, and early settlers of the town; Sylvia being the eldest child of a family of five children. Mr. And Mrs. Foote raised a family of three children, of whom tow are now alive. Agasta, the eldest, was born April 16th, 1843, and after reaching womanhood became the wife of Marshville Gibbons, a resident of this town. Albert, the next child, was born March 27th, 1845, and died January 3d, 1871. He was a young man of great promise; had received a fine education in the common schools and at the Delaware Literary Institute, at franklin, and although dying so young had established a reputation as a teacher second to none. His death was a great loss to the community and a sore affliction to his parents. Frances A., born November 15th, 1855, resides at home with her parents, and is a young lady of intelligence and refinement.
In politics Mr. Foote is a Republican. He and his wife and daughters are members of the Congregational church at Franklin village.
Although Mr. Foote's opportunities in early life to secure an education were very limited, he only having the privilege of attending common schools in the winter season, form the time he was ten years old until he was eighteen, yet these opportunities were well improved, and through them and careful reading and study in later years he is to-day one of the best informed and most respected residents of the town. He is one of the wealthiest men in the town, having made a fortune by hard work in the wagon manufacturing business and a careful investment of his receipts. May he be spared many years yet to enjoy the fruits of his labors, which he has acquired by honest and integrity.
The first town meeting ever held in the town was ordered by an act of the Legislature to be held on the first Tuesday in April in the year 1793. At this meeting the following town officers were duly elected: Supervisor, Sluman Wattles; town clerk, Robert North; assessors-Gilbert Smith, David St. John and Samuel Hanford; commissioner of highway-Daniel Root, Benajah McCall, and James Follet; overseers of the poor-Daniel Root and Wait Goodrich; constable-John Ells, Nathan Edgerton, and Charles Wattles; collectors-Charles Wattles and Samuel Hanford; fence viewers-Gabriel North, Samuel Beebe, Samuel Osborn, Henry Shepherd, Hugh Thompson and Samuel Frisbie; pound masters-Wait Goodrich, John Poole, Asa Turner, John Ells and Samuel Frisbie; overseers of highways-Matthew Benedict, Cornelius Houck, Nathan Edgerton, Thomas Dennis, Samuel Johnson, William Webber, Levi Baxter, Joseph Bramhall, Adam Cooley, John Pine, Michael Goodrich, Adam Sharp, Peter Bonda, William Cornell, Jared Hoyt, Aaron Chamberlin, Matthew Marsh, Luther Burt, Peter Higbie, Oliver Hungaford and Roger Wattles.
Votes were then taken, authorizing the commissioners of highways to lay out a road from Joshua Pine's to Jesse Dickerson's, or from the village now called Walton to Cannonsville, both places at that time being with the borders of the town; that the town officers keep an account of their proceedings and lay them before the town at their next annual town meeting; $3 bounty for every full-grown wolf, and $1 10s for every wolf under one year old, killed within the town that year; that the town brand should be the letter F, to be put on the left shoulder; that hogs should not run at large; that all fences should be five feet high and well erected; and that the next town meeting be held at the house of Daniel Root, at ten o'clock in the forenoon.
The first minutes of the description of a public highway laid out were recorded May 6th, 1793, and signed by Benajah McCall and Daniel Root, commissioners.
The next town meeting was held April 1st, 1794, at Daniel Root's, the place now owned by Augustus Watters, on the hill south of the Plymouth church. Sluman Wattles was again chosen supervisor, and Robert North town clerk. The names of the following persons appear in the list of town officers for the first time: Josiah Mix, William French, Andrew Biggam, Seth Andrews, Witter Johnson, Abraham Bush, Abner Loveland, Squire Burcham, Eliphaz Loveland, Oliver Burt, Howard Putnam, Reuben Smith, Samuel Robinson, Abner Hawley, Alexander Crawford, Andrew Craig, Cornelius Morrison, Silas Benedict, Josiah Cleveland, James Olds, Samuel Beebe and John Ogden.
The next town meeting was held at the same place, the 7th day of April, 1795, when the same supervisor and town clerk were re-elected. It was also voted that the bounty on wolves be continued, and that a committee be chosen to divide the town, as it was very inconvenient for the whole town to assemble in one place, and that each half of the town choose three members of the committee, who should meet and describe a division line.
The nest town meeting was held at the house of John Ells, the first Tuesday of April, 1796. Elias Buttes was chosen supervisor, and Robert North town clerk. It was voted that Elias Osborn and Gabriel North be a committee to carry into effect the report of the committee on the division of the town, and that they be allowed a reasonable compensation. It was also voted that the next town meeting be held at the school-house near Captain Asa Turner's, and there they were annually held until 1802.
An extra town meeting was held September 20th, 1800, for the purpose of electing the committee to divide the town. Aaron Chamberlin, Joseph Merrick and Reuben Bennett were duly elected, and afterwards Witter Johnson and Enos Parker were added to the committee. They rendered their report agreeing on the division line, January 21st, 1801. March 26th, 1795, the commissioners of highways divided the roads into twenty-seven districts, and described their boundaries. The first commissioners of public schools were elected at the town meeting in April 1796, and were Nathaniel Wattles, Elias Osborn, Wait Goodrich, Witter Johnson, Azel Hyde, Benjah McCall and James Durfee. It was voted in 1798 that the commissioners would receive pay for looking into matters concerning the school money; and they were allowed sixteen shillings a day for their services in going to receive the money at Delhi which amounted to one hundred and four dollars and seventy-two cents, and was paid to them by David Phelps, clerk of the board of supervisor, by a draft on the county treasurer. In March, 1804, it was voted that the town be at the expense of preserving the map of this State, by starching it on a cloth, and deposit it in the clerk's office of the town. In 1812, September 29th, Abijah Seeley, Azel Bowers and Ira McCall were chosen commissioners to divide the town into school districts, and their report was rendered November 1st, 1813, creating fourteen districts. At the regular town meeting held on the 2nd day of March, 1813, it was voted that cattle or horses shall not run at large, from the first day of November until the first of April, within half a mile of a tavern, meeting-house or grist-mill, under a penalty of fifty cents for each offense and pound-masters were elected for the purpose of impounding any stock found running at large. In 1816 the town voted to raise two hundred dollars for the support of the poor; also to pay bounty of five dollars for each wolf and ten dollars for each panther killed within the town, and twelve and half cents for crows. Advertisements of strayed cattle were recorded in the book of town records. The town meetings were held in various parts of the town and generally at the meeting house. The old Congregational church edifice was used for that purpose for many years. At an annual town meeting held there the second day of March, 1819, it was voted "that the town poor be set up at public auction, and struck off to the person who would keep them; under the direction of the poor-masters, for the lowest sum per week." A Mrs. Root and Benjamin Frail were then sold and bid off by John McClennon at one dollar and fifty cents per week, each.
The records of the town clerk show that two slaves were manumitted by their owners. One of these was owned by Platt Townsend, and is described as "a negro wench named Jin". The record of manumission bears dated Franklin, October 3d, 1794. The other slave, a negro man, was named Titus Enos, and was the property of William R. Halsey; he was set free the seventeenth day of January, 1817. These negroes were certified to be under forty-five years of age, of good health and of sufficient ability to support and provide for themselves. These records are signed by the justices of the peace, overseers of the poor, and the former owner of the slave.
The town records describe the manner in which each farmer identified his sheep and cattle in the early days, by cutting peculiar slits or notches in their ears. One hundred and seventeen different marks are described by their respective owners. The first mark was recorded by Cyrus Ames, an was as follows: "Half crop the left ear, and half pen on the upper of the right."
The following is a list of the supervisors of the town from its organization, and the date of their election: 1793-95. 1798, 1799, Sluman Wattles; 1796, Elias Buttes; 1797, Enos Parker; 1800-11, Elias Osborn; 1812, Aaron Dewey; 1813-20, Ira McCall; 1821-23, Obadiah Sands; 1824, 1825, Abijah Seeley; 1826, 1827, Jacob Howell; 1828, 1829, Erastus Edgerton; 1830, 1831, Ichabod Bartlett; 1832, 1833, Elihu McCall; 1834, 1835, 1843, John Thompson; 1836-38, 1846-48, 1850, 1851, John Edgerton; 1839, 1840, Harvey Mann; 1841, 1842, Levi Hale; 1844, 1845, Beriah Bowers; 1849, Homer Bostwick; 1852-54, William Waters; 1855, Seymour C. Wilcox; 1856, 1857, Samuel F. Miller; 1858, Seymour Cook; 1859, William S. Noble; 1860-62, Albert E. Sullard; 1863-70, Tracy G. Rich; 1871-73, Enos S. Munson; 1874, Hartson S.Treadwell; 1875, Beriah L. Bowers; 1876-78,Charles A. Douglas; 1879, Chester H. Treadwell. For the same period the following are the names of the town clerks: 1794-96, Robert North; 1797-1800, Peter Betts; 1801-12, 1821, 1822, Ira McCall; 1813-15, Erastus Edgerton; 1816, 1817, William Beach; 1818, 1827, Samuel White; 1819, 1820, Henry White; 1823-26, John Edgerton; 1828, 1829, Joseph Gates; 1820, 1831, John Haren; 1832-34, William Waters; 1835-38, William S. Noble; 1839-41, Amos Douglas, jr.; 1842-44, Hiram Edgerton; 1845-47, 1849, 1850, Charles Noble; 1848, John S. Thompson; 1851, 1852, Charles R. Waters; 1853, 1854, Francis P. Waters; 1855, C. Dwight Thompson; 1856-58, Albert Noble; 1859, 1860, John Nicol; 1861-63, Henry R. Scott; 1864-68, Egbert A. Chamberlin; 1869, 1870, Albert D. Hitchcock; 1871, Henry E. Barnes; 1872, George D. Lathrop; 1873, 1874, Waldo D. Backus; 1875, Isaac J. Birdsall; 1876-78, George F. Sullard, 1879, Walter Rutherford.
The first tavern licenses ever granted in the town were given to Joseph Bramhall and Kinner Smith, on payment of forty shillings. These licenses bear the date May 16th, 1797, and were signed by Enos Parker and Nathaniel Wattles, the license board. The persons licensed were compelled to enter into bonds to the amount of $125 each.
The next year eight licenses were granted for the sale of ardent spirits, to the following named parties, who kept taverns or stores in the town limits: Clark Lawrence, Ambrose Barneby, Ebenezer Williams, Hugh Thompson, Kinner Smith, Peter Betts, Joseph Bramhall and Jabez Gerald.
In 1832 licenses were granted to Elisha S. Johnson., Albert Miller and Daniel Beach, on payment of $5 each, to keep inns, and store licenses to John Edgerton and Fitch Ford. In 1859 but two licenses were granted in the town, on payment of $30, and from 1871 none have been granted.
Asa Turner kept the first inn, but whether he had a license to sell rum is not known. This tavern was located on the place now owned by Mrs. M. J. Loveland. The building was partly log and partly framed, and was also used by Turner for a store. It was open for public use about 1790. In 1792 Joseph Bramhall was keeping a famous tavern in East Franklin, and in 1797 license was granted to Kinner Smith, who was associated with his brother James. Their tavern stood on the same grounds now occupied by the hotel of Dr. J. H. Foote. Hugh Thompson also kept for many years a tavern on the farm now owned by Mrs. Willis Haight. After the construction of the Catskill turnpike road in 1802 several more taverns were build, situated as follows: one on the place now owned by Robert Smith, one where Harvey Barnes now resides, another at C. O. Potter's, one at the Houghtaling farm, one at Croton and one about a mile above that village.
The makeshifts of the pioneer days were few and simple. For some years it was no easy matter for even the more industrious of the settlers to obtain money to make payments on their land contracts. The sealers almost invariably came into the town poor. When they had made the fist payments on their land, cleared a portion of it and made a few other necessary improvements, they had little left, except what was essential to the comfort of their families until they could raise their first crop, on which they depended, with some reason, to subsist and save enough from year to year to meet the demands of the tax collector and make further payments on their land.
This they might have done had not nearly every man in the town raised enough grain for himself and a little to sell, which could not be sold, because there was no demand fo it at home until the distilleries were build, and no facilities for conveying it to the markets of the outside world. As the impossibility of realizing a profit from farming was thus practically made manifest, it became apparent that some other kind of traffic must be resorted to; and the resources which presented themselves as most available were the manufacturing of pot and pearl ash and lumbering. Asheries were established in various parts of the town. One was located on the place then owned by Eratus Edgerton, one on the farm now owned by George Griswold, and another tow miles above the present village of Croton. Ashes were purchased from the farmers at about a shilling a bushel for house ashes, and a little less for field ashes, according to quality and their degree of purity from dirt. In 1793 a road was built from the Ouleout to the Delaware river. This road was afterward and is still called the "Old Walton road," and was chiefly used for many years by lumberman drawing their lumber to the river. This opened a new source of revenue. The hills on the west side of the Ouleout were thickly covered with pine trees. These were cut down and sawed into lumber, which was drawn to the Delaware and rated to the market at Philadelphia, where it was sold at from $10 to $20 per thousand feet. In one season John Edgerton rafted three hundred thousand feet down the river. In 1835 he purchased of William A. Miller one hundred and twenty-five thousand feet of pine lumber for $5 per thousand. This interest alone brought a large sum of money into the town. Large crops of wheat were raised on the new land, and the surplus grain was drawn to Catskill, where it found a ready market.
Sheep husbandry was also largely engaged in and large flocks of sheep, numbering from three to six hundred each, were kept throughout the town. The wool was purchased principally by agents for the New England factories.
In the year 1836 the dairying interest was quite extensively engaged in, and from that time to the present has been the leading and most profitable business of the town. The butter was drawn to Catskill until the Erie railroad was completed, then, and until the Albany and Susquehanna road was built, to Hancock. The town of Franklin at the present time keeps more cows and manufactures more butter than any other town in the county. The fist firkin of butter ever packed in the town as made by Mrs. George Cobine in 1925.
The first distillery was built by Erastus Edgerton 9n 1810 and was located back of the house now known as the Deacon Allen place.
In 1812 another still was built by Griss & Newell. This was situated on the place now owned by Mrs. Addie Lawton. Judge Beach, afterward purchased the property, and manufactured whiskey there till 1836. In 1826 Amasa Clark built a distillery on the place now owned by Mrs. Niles Georgia, but failing in business in1828, the property passed into the hands of Amon Bostwick, John Edgerton, Elihu McCall and Abijah Seeley, who carried on the business until the grain had been worked up that Clark had purchased. About forty bushels of grain were used daily at each still, and the refuse matter was fed to the hogs, of which each distiller kept large numbers. These stills gave the farmers of this part of the town an available market for their grain. An 9immense quantity of whiskey was annually distilled, and thousands of barrels were drawn to the Delaware river, and sent to Philadelphia on the rafts. Mr. John Edgerton says that he took down the river at one time on one of his rafts one hundred barrels of whiskey, on which raft Amasa Parker was steersman, and Judge Beach a passenger. During the trip down the river Judge Beach fell overb9oard, and was pulled back on to the raft by Mr. Edgerton. A great deal of the liquor was drank in the town and vicinity, and there were but few families but what kept a sideboard well stocked with the same, which was freely offered to all visitors, as well as used in the family; and the fact it well authenticated that a celebrated minister named Kirby, who once preached in the town, drank regularly a half gallon of rum each day. Large quantities of cider were afterward made at these old distilleries. The first grist-mill was built on the Ouleout, on the site of the present Lloyd's mils, now situated in the town of Sidney, but until 1801 within the town of Franklin. This mill was built in 1788 by a man named Abraham Fuller. Previous to the building of this mill the few inhabitants were obliged to go to Schoharie, Cherry Valley or Harpersfield, to mill. In 1810 Nathan Edgerton and John Thompson built a grist-mill where the fine, large mill of Mr. Daniel Miller now stands. A mill which at one time did a large business, known as Thompson's mill, was situated about three miles above the present village of Franklin, on the Croton creek; another mill was built a half mile west of the present village of Croton, and is still used. Both of these mills were built at an early date. A small mill once stood on the farm now owned by John Lathan.
The first furnace stood where Boyce's paper mill now is. It was built in 1822, and was owned and operated by Alfred Bly and Orrin Beach. Their ore and old iron for casting were brought in from Catskill. In 1825 cast iron plows were used in the town, but they were no manufactured here till several years later. Previous to their introduction, wooden plows, with steel points, were used, and were so stoutly constructed that they were scarcely ever broken.
The first tannery in the town was built by Elias Osborn, and was situated on the Waterbury place; the vats were in the lot on which the residence of A.C. and D.G. Page stand. At an early date Ebenezer Hanford had a small tannery near the Ouleout " corners." In 1800 Icahbod Bartlett built the tannery now standing in Bartlett Hollow, and did a large business, keeping several apprentices.
A small tannery was afterward built by J.H. and C. L. Kneeland on their farm on Handsome brook, but the business was only carried on for a short time. At the present time there are no tanneries in the town.
At an early date-about 1800, possibly 1795- saw-mills were in operation on the Ouleout and its tributaries, and during the lumbering years, and until 1820, about thirty mils were run to their full capacity. The present Mann saw-mill was built in 19-6 by Samuel Hutchinson, Ansel Ford, Nathan Edgerton and his son John. Peleg Miller and his son William A. were largely engaged at various times in the lumbering business, and were the owners of several mils, Augustus J. Chamberlin built many of the mills, at a cost of $150 each. At present very little sawing is done in the town. Most of the valuable timber has been cut down and used for building purposes or rafted down the Delaware river.
The first merchant was Asa Turner. A man named Calhoun was also engaged in trade at an early date; his store was located near the junction of the Oneonta and Croton roads. Hall & Blakesley used the ball room of Smith's hotel for a store for several years, and did a large trade. This room was about forty feet in length, and on the ground floor, near the site of Dr. Foote's hotel. The trade for many years was entirely carried on by barter, but little money being in circulation. The goods of the merchants were exchanged for the produce of the settler, which was taken to Catskill and sold or exchanged for other goods. Daniel Swift was also an early merchant. John Edgerton, Isaac Platt, Joseph Gates, Edward Martin, Harvey Barnes, William Waters and Amos Douglas were merchants at a later date.
Doctors Wright and Azariah Willis were the first regular physicians of the town, and were located here prior to 1800. Before their arrival each family kept on hand a supply of medicines of a simple nature, or else depended on some neighbor who did. Doctors William Fitch, Hazen and Dewey were also early practitioners in the town. Doctors S. C. Wilcox and A. E. Sullard followed them in practice at a more recent date.
The first lawyers were Henry White, Amos Douglas, who received a college education, Erastus Root, Noadiah and his brother Stephen C. Johnson. Judge Douglas's office formerly stood on the Waterbury place, but was afterward moved on to the hill on the E. P. Howe place, and remodeled into a dwelling house. Erastus Root and Stephen C. Johnson afterward removed to Delhi. M. L. Mitchell practiced law in the town in 1848, and William E. Webster in 1844 1nd 1845. In 1860 a lawyer named M. P. Sweet was located in the town, but he remained but a short time.
The Catskill Turnpike Company was formed in 1800, for the purpose of constructing a road from "Wattles Ferry," on the Susquehanna river, to Catskill, a distance of eighty-nine miles. The road was built in 1802, and was a famous highway, giving the residents of Delaware, a part of Otsego, Chenango, Broome, Tioga and Chemung counties, and the residents of norther Pennsylvania, an outlet. This road passed through the entire length of the town of Franklin, from west to east, and brought a great deal of money into the town. Hotels were built every few miles, and were usually full of guests night and day, it being no uncommon occurrence for thirty to fifty travelers to stop for a meal of victuals or to spend the night, usually merchants form the west on their way to or from Catskill or New York. Immense covered freight wagons with wide tires, drawn by six or eight horses, were constantly on the road. Previous to the building of this road there was no regular mail communication with Catskill or the intermediate places. The first stage run from Wattles Ferry through Franklin to Catskill was owned by Burr Bradley, who made the round trip once a week. After the completion of the turnpike road several four and sic horse stages were put on the road to convey passengers, by Messrs. Watkins, Tompkins or the Beaches. Extra stages have made the trip from Thompson's tavern to Harpersfield and returned without feeding, a distance of sixty miles. Mile-stones were erected the whole length of the road, and toll-gates kept ten miles apart.
The Oneonta and Franklin Turnpike Company was incorporated April 13th, 1835, with a capital stock of $4,000 for the purpose of building a turnpike road from the Ouleout creek to the Susquehanna river, so as to connect with a turnpike running from Oxford to the head of the Delaware river. At the time this road was built the survey was so well made that no change for the better can be made respecting the grades, although the hill at the time was covered with dense forest, through which the road was cut. E. R. Ford, John Thompson, Ralph Daniels, Fitch Ford, John Fritts, William Angell and Martin E. Knapp were the principal stockholders and constituted the first board of directors. John Thompson was elected president and Roger Case treasurer. In 1836 William A. Miller, Ira McCall and Samuel H.Case were elected directors. There are at present twelve stockholders, and although forty-five years have elapsed since the stock was issued, nearly all of it remains in the possession of the children of the original owners. Most of the receipts of the road are annually expended in keeping it in repair. The present directors are S. H. Case, S. F. Miller, J. R. Walling, Sylvester Ford, W. S. Fritts, Stephen Parrish and Harvey Mann. Dr. Samuel H. Case is president and Hon. Samuel F. Miller secretary and treasurer.
Daniel Root in 1792 built a framed dwelling house on the farm now owned by Augustus Watters. This was said to have been the first entire framed building ever constructed in the present town. At that time the building was located on the Hamden patent.
The Waterbury or Willis house, which is still standing in the lower part of the village, was built before the year 1801, and was for many years the finest house in the town. A large gable roof house stood near where William A. Taylor now resides.
The first two-story frame house in the town was built by Joseph Shepherdson for Ephraim McCall. It is now used for a wagon-house on the farm of Mr. Chauncey Ogden. This was also the first building ever framed in the town by the "square rule" method. The next two-story building was house built by Ansel Ford, and afterward, and until destroyed by fire, the house of S. F. Miller.
The first painted house in the town was built by Drake Hobbie in 1807, and stood on the flat near the orchard on the farm now owned by Mr. William Jester. This house was painted white; it was torn down twenty-five years ago.
The first white child born in the town was Thomas Edgerton, born April 1st, 1787. He was a son of Nathan Edgerton. The first marriage was that of Judah Bartlett and Caroline Wattles. The first school ever kept in the town was at Bartlett Hollow; it was taught by Sluman Wattles. The school-house, the first one in the town, was built for "school and meeting purposes", and stood on the bank near where Theodore Wandle's house lately stood. A school-house also stood on the place now owned by Orrin Bennett; another near where the red school-house is now situated, the original frame being still used; also one at "Case Settlement", near where the road turns to go to Oneonta, now the North Franklin neighborhood. These schools were all largely attended; the lists numbering from forty to eighty pupils each. Two of the most famous teachers of more than half a century ago were Joshua Whitney and Master Gay. Thee two men are well remembered by the elder residents of the town, most of whom received their learning from one or both of these early wielders of the birchen whip or hickory ferule. Master Gay always had the credit of teaching Martin VanBuren his letters. Joshua Whitney died at Franklin, August 13th, 1879, aged ninety-one years.
Alonzo Hawley, Ebenezer Bennett and Samuel White also taught school at an early day.
In the fall of 1819 the town was thrown into a great excitement by a rumor that old Mrs. Root had mysteriously disappeared, and that no trace of her could be found. She was at the time out of town's paupers, and was living at the house of John McClennon, an Irishman, who resided on "Strong Hill." Mrs. Root was crazy by spells, and it was thought she wandered into the woods and was lost, although some supposed she had been foully dealt with. It was said her dementedness was caused by her house and effects being burned and her husband taken prisoner by the Indians. As soon as the fact was known that she had disappeared, search was made, in which nearly every man and boy in the town participated, but without an success, and the mystery of her disappearance remains unsolved.
In 1826 occurred the great wolf hunt, in which nearly every man and boy of the towns of Walton, Sidney and Franklin participated. Early in the morning the line of battle was formed, and extended from Walton village to the Ouleout creek. At the report of a gun the whole force stared, keeping within a short distance of each other, and gradually formed a circle, the center of which was high, known as "hog hill", in the town of Sidney. After encircling the hill a salute was ordered fired which was heartily responded to by every owner of a gun , amid the ear splitting blasts of a hundred horns. But very little game was killed, and that of a harmless nature. Captain Harry Buell and a hunter named Dibble each killed a deer. Only the tracks of two wolves were seen, and none killed; nevertheless , this hunt was always called the great wolf hunt. At the close of it many adjourned to Beach's tavern, where they spent the night in a merry manner.
In April, 1834, two very large pigeon roosts were located in the southwestern part of the town. They covered from two to three hundred acres of ground near the present residences of Augustus Watters and Robert Pierson. The pigeons remained till the middle of July, and were killed in large numbers by parties who came in from the surrounding country.
The first record of the militia is found in Deacon Root's diary, in which he says, Tuesday, June 26th, 1792: "The military company net at John Ells's for the first time, under command of Captain Samuel Johnson". As early as 1800 annual training were held in the town, and they were the days of the year. The town of Franklin had three finely uniformed and well equipped companies. When the war of 1812 commenced, a company at once volunteered for service under Captain Parker, and was sent to Sacket's Harbor, where the men remained until the time for which they had enlisted had expired. In the summer of 1814 the light infantry company, composed of 70 men, under Captain Parker, and the heavy artillery company, under Captain Joel Gillett and Lieutenant Hines, also composed o 70 men, volunteered for service during the war, and were sent to New York city to help guard the harbor. A draft was also made on the militia for additional men, and the drawing of the names took place on the ground now occupied by Rutherford's store, under direction of Captain Azel Bowers and Lieutenant Joseph Waters. None of these men ever came in contact with the enemy, but several died in the hospitals during the war. Each soldier received a grant of 160 acres of land from the government, which many disposed of for $300; also from $50 to $60 for clothing, and at a latter day a pension of $96 per year. But tow of the soldiers of the war of 1812 are now living in the town, viz. Benajah Taylor and Daniel Chamberlin.
February 12th, 1845, the Franklin company of militia under command of Captain B. B. Cook, was ordered to Delhi, to protect that village from the apprehended attacks of the Anti-Renters. It remained there for several days.
The creamery association was organized in January, 1867, as a joint stock company, with a capital of $4,000 in shares of $50. The stock was subscribed for mostly by the farmers who wished to patronize the institution. A large and commodious building was erected near the school-house in Bartlett Hollow, and fitted up with all the modern conveniences for making butter and cheese, both of which commodities have since been manufactured there in large quantities, the milk of about four hundred cows being used annually.
The present directors are: W.A. Taylor, H.S. Edwards, E. S. Munson, E. Taylor and Amos Douglas. Officers:-Enos S. Munson, president; W. A. Taylor, secretary; Edwin Taylor, treasurer. Mr. Munson is also superintendent of the factory.
At the breaking out of the Rebellion in 1961, Franklin responded to the President's call with men and money, and before the close of the war, three hundred and eighteen men had enlisted and gone to the field from this town, while a large number of men were hired to go into the army from other localities to help fill the town's quota.
At a special town meeting held at Crandell's Hotel, September 1st, 1862, it was resolved by an almost unanimous vote that $50 be paid to every resident of the town who enlisted under the call of the President for 600,000 men, until Franklin's quota, under that call, being 102 men, was raised, and the supervisor was authorized to borrow the necessary funds.
At another special town meeting, held December 29th, 1863, after the call of the President for 300,000 volunteers, a resolution was passed by a vote of 246 against 64 to pay each volunteer under that call $300, provided the State did not increase the State bounty to that amount.
At a meeting held February 9th, 1864, it was resolved that the town add interest to the bounty voted December 29th, 1863, and also $50 and interest to that bounty to each volunteer; and also give to each volunteer the same bounty under the last call of the President for 200,000 additional men, provided that any increase of the State bounty above $75 be deducted from the said $350.
On February 15th, 1874, it was resolved that the town enter into a contract with Mark W. Stevens, of Sloansville, N. Y., for twenty-five men, to be credited to Franklin's quota, at the sum of $350 each; and the supervisor was authorized to sell town notes sufficient to pay Stevens $8,750.
Upon the receipt of the call of the President dated July 18th, 1864, asking for 500,000 men, $20,000 was voted for raising volunteers for two years, to fill the town's quota. It was provided that this sum should be paid by the issue of town bonds, payable in three-year installments. John Edgerton and Chester H. Treadwell were appointed to raise volunteers in the rebellious States, and Governor Seymour was respectfully requested to give them the necessary authority.
At a special meeting of the town, held August 25th, 1864, the town board was authorized to pay $600 for volunteers, or to any person who would place a recruit to the credit of the town. They were also authorized to raise more money to pay for volunteers and the necessary expenses of recruiting. September 12th of the same year the board was authorized to pay $800, $850 or $900 for recruits, provided the quota could not be filled without; this proposal was carried by a vote of 276 to 38. Saturday, January 14th, 1865, it was voted to raise $30,000 to fill the town's quota, under the last call of the President for 300,000 more men.
All persons furnishing substitutes for one year were to be allowed $400; for two years $500; and for three years $600.
John Edgerton and Chester Treadwell were made a committee to procure recruits on the best terms possible. Town bonds were ordered to be issued to carry out these resolutions, payable in 1866 and 1867. These resolutions were adopted by a vote of 165 to 14.
In 1861 Company D of the 144th New York regiment, composed of 100 men, was raised in this town, and in September of the same year was mustered into service.
The North Franklin charge consists of two churches, one in the very northeastern limits of the town, and the other a few miles up the valley, in Meredith Hollow. The church at the Hollow was the fit of Rev. Edward White, who built it at a cost of $1,500.
Since 1858 this charge has sustained a pastor. The present membership is 72. The number of probationers is 10, of Sunday-schools 3, of Sunday-school scholars 125. Value of church property, $3,500. The following are among the ministers who have been stationed there: Rev. Messrs. Hazard, in 1874; Edward White, 1875 and 1875; F. C. Morgan, 1877; William Green, 1878; D. V. Mattice, 1879.
This church was organized in 1856, and a church edifice built in 1857. It is situated on West Brook, a branch of the Delaware river, and about seven miles from Franklin village. This church is of the Congregational order, and is usually supplied with preaching by the ministers settled at North Walton. Rev. Mr. Curtis, of that place, is now the pastor. This church supplies the needs of a large farming community situated several miles from a village. The church property is valued at $2,000.
This church, better known as the Arabia church, was built in 1832, and is situated on the highest point of land in the southwestern part of the town. The church was built by the Presbyterians, then the prevailing denomination of that vicinity. Mr. Alonzo Hawley solicited most of the funds for erecting the church, and traveled as far east as Salisbury, Conn., soliciting aid.
After a while, about 1842, the Presbyterians, finding themselves unable to support preaching, offered the church to the Methodists, provided they would maintain preaching which offer was accepted, and the Methodists have held meetings there regularly most of the time. The church as become so dilapidated that meetings have been held in the school-house, situated near by, for the past few years. The Arians and Baptists used frequently to hold service in the church thirty years ago. The title to the property is now being settled in the courts. The M. E. minister at Croton now preaches at this place. Rev. Charles Gorse organized the charge in 1843.
The village of Franklin is located in the northwestern part of the town, on the Ouleout creek. It was incorporated by an act of the Legislature passed in the spring of 1836. The first corporation election was held at the hotel of R. W. Smith, June 7th, 1836, at which meeting the following offices were elected: Trustees - Stephen C. Johns, Willis C. Ripley, Alexander Searles, Linus Porter and John Edgerton; assessors - Job Mills, Joseph P. Parsons and Asa Nelson; treasurer, William Waters; clerk, William S. Noble; constable and collector, William Betts, jr.
At a meeting of the trustees June 13th, Stephen C. Johnson was elected president of the board, and Hiram Baldwin pound master. The following described premises constituted the pound: "Voted that the pound be the north side of the wagon-house, and in rear of the open shed, and in front of the stage barn of Hiram Edgerton." The usual by-laws of a country village were enacted at the first meeting of the board.
The following persons are shown by the records to have acted as presidents of the board of trustees; 1836-38, Stephen C. Johnson, Esq.; 1839, Almeron Fitch; 1841, Roger Case; 1842, Harvey Scott; 1843, David Dewey; 1844, Orsamus Bronson' 1848, 1859, Augustus J.Chamberlin; 1849, 1864, Linus Porter; 1850, Alexander Searles; 1852, Hiram Edgerton; 1853-56, Seymour C. Wilcox; 1857, Alonzo B. Judd; 1858, 1861, Beriah Bowers; 1850, J. H. Foote; 1862, 1863, Earl F. Bartlett; 1854, William S. Noble; 1866, 1867, 1871, William B. Hanford; 1868-70, 1874, 1875, Sherrill L. Slade; 1872, William H. Noble; 1873, Charles Hanford; 1876, Daniel Wiswall; 1877, 1878, James Rutherford; 1879, John P. Drees.
The following persons have acted as clerks of the board of trustees: 1836-41, William S. Noble; 1842-44, Amos Douglas, sen.; 1845-49, George W. Reynolds; 1850 to the present time, Albert E. Sullard.
Previous to 1827 the village of Franklin contained but few residents or buildings, and a great rivalry existed as to which should become the business center, the present village or the "Corners", at the junction of the Ouleout and Croton roads. Each hamlet contained a few residents, a store or two and usual number of shops, etc. At the Corners the best store in the town was kept by a man name Calhoun who was succeeded in trade by Daniel Swift. In 1806 there were but a dozen buildings in Franklin village. One, on the premises now occupied by Mrs. Mary Jump, was owned by Zadoc Noble, who kept a small store in a part of the building. The next building on the west side of street was owned by Asa Turner, who kept the first tavern and store in the town. This property is now owned by Mrs. M. J. Loveland. Another small house stood on the place now owned by Albert S. Chamberlin. Then came the old tavern stand kept by James and Kinner Smith; next, the house of William Betts, where Mrs. Warren Wakeman's residence now stands. The next building was Lee Smith's hotel or inn, which stood on the premises now owned by Robert Smith, and was destroyed by fire in 1813. Labin G. Wheeler lived were Mrs. Way now resides, and Daniel Swift afterward moved from the Corners to the village, and lived and kept store where Willard Barnes now resides. On the east side of the street were the Waterbury or Willis House, the store and residence of Deacon Simeon Goodman and a small building which stood where the Wakeman building now stands. These buildings comprised the village.
In 1827 John Edgerton purchased of Betts & Ogden one hundred acres of land in the center of the village, and immediately had it surveyed and laid out in building lots of about one-half acre each. The village at once commenced growing, and has continued to do so slowly until the present day. From an article published in 1858 in the Franklin Visitor, written by Mr. Harvey Parsons, relative to the early history of the village, we make the following extracts: "Daniel Swift kept one of the two stores in the place. This mart stood nearly eight rods east of the Sullard place. He was the owner of one of the two houses of which our townsmen could boast as being painted. The other painted house was that of William Betts. Mr. Swift's wife was a lady of refinement and worth, of energy of character and mind. Mr. Swift was a model merchant for a village or 'settlement' as ours was called; a man of wholesome influence in society, of a portly form, a cheerful disposition and a large heart.
"Near the house of Asa Nelson stood an old building one end being two-stories high, the under room being a store. In this building lived Deacon Goodman, a man who occupied a high position of trust in the church and community. "In the venerable old house next south of Mrs. Judge Beach's lived Dr. Willis. The doctor was not ashamed of his religion. He was fervent in his sympathies with those whose endeavor was to gain health of soul, and he used frequently to lead the devotions of the brethren in the church.
In 1835 an effort was made to obtain an act incorporating an institution of learning, to be located at Franklin, and on the 23d day of April, 1835, the Legislature passed such an act, the school to be called the Delaware Literary Institute. Daniel Waterbury, Isaac Platt, Ichabod Bartlett, David Dewey, Elihu McCall, Joseph H. Merrick, Orator Blakesley, William Betts, Asahel B. Roberts, Amos Douglas, Joseph P. Parsons, Harvey Mann, Beriah Bowers, Cyprean S. Smith, Wills C. Ripley, Harvey Parsons, Herman D. Gould, Ozias Waters, Thaddeus Mather, Benjamin B. Eells, Ebenezer Penfield, Samuel A. Law, William H. Downs, and Jacob S. Fitch and their successors were constituted trustees. Measures were then taken to procure subscriptions for the purchase of a site, and to erect a suitable building. The sum of $7,000 was soon subscribed to purchase fifteen acres of land for a site, and to put up a building; and on the 5th day of May, 1835, the board of trustees voted to erect a stone building, eight fee long, forty feet in width, and four stories high. Elihu McCall, Osias Waters, Harvey Mann, James P. Parsons and Amos Douglas were appointed a committee to superintend its erection. The contract for the building was given to Wills C. Ripley. On the 17th of February, 1836, Miss Mary Downs of Colchester, was employed as principal instructress of the ladies' department. She was the first teacher employed, and was to receive a salary of $150 and board. She taught the first school of the institution in a private hall before the institute building was completed. Miss Catharine L. Upham was appointed her assistant. On the 24th of August, 1836, the board of trustees appointed Rev. William Frazer principal teacher of the institute, to commence the school in November, 1836, at a salary of $600 a year; and in October, 1826, Miss Emily Downs was appointed assistant teacher. Charles O. Waters and Adam Craig were appointed assistant teachers in the male department; Waters at a compensation of $10.50 a term, for two hours instruction each day; and if Rev. Mr. Frazer should need more assistance, Mr. Waters was to assist him three hours a day for $12.50 a term. At the first meeting of the board of trustees, Isaac Platt was chosen president; William Betts, vice-president; Amos Douglas, Secretary, and Harvey Mann, treasurer.
In the very early existence of the institution an attempt was made to make it a denominational school, and to this end resolutions were passed on the 5th of March, 1835, as follows: "Resolved, That as fast as vacancies shall occur in the board of trustees, the ministers of the Presbytery of Delaware County shall be chosen members of the board of trustees, till a majority at least of the ministers of said Presbytery become members of the board." "Resolved, That the ministers of said Presbytery belonging to the board at an7y time be a standing committee to nominate the instructors of said institute, and to regulate the course of studies, attend the examinations, and advise in the regulation and government of the institution." Some years after the above resolutions were passed, in 1853, the following preamble and resolutions were passed by the trustees:
"Whereas, a communications has appeared in the New York Evangelist in which it was stated that the Delaware Literary Institute, located at Franklin, New York, is under the particular care of Delaware Presbytery; therefore,
"Resolved, that the above named institution is not under the care of Delaware Presbytery, nor any ecclesiastical body."
The publication in the Evangelist caused considerable excitement and a strong feeling of disapprobation in the public mind, and especially among those that had exerted themselves and paid liberally for the establishing of the school; but the prompt and decided action of the board of trustees dissipated al fears of its becoming a denominational school In December, 1836,Isaac Platt having resigned his office as president of the board, Elihu McCall was elected to that office. In the arrangement for the government of the school a resolution was passed saying that, in the opinion of the trustees, for students to attend dancing schools in term time was "disreputable to them as scholars, and incompatible with their improvement and the best interest of the institution."
The following were the charges for tuition adopted: Arithmetic, grammar, geography and other common branches, $3; surveying, mensuration and other higher branches of English education, $4; Greek, Latin, Algebra and geometry, $5 in the male department, and $2 extra French. In the ladies' department: Physics, geometry, algebra, evidences of Christianity, moral and intellectual philosophy and technology, $4; philosophy and history of England, $3.50; Watt's on the Mind, Willard's Republic and history, and other common branches, $3; first book of history, grammar, arithmetic and geography, $2.50; and first rudiments of education, $2. Up to August 9th, 1837, the male and female departments had been separate in their government, and each under the control of its principal teacher; but a that time a resolution was passed by the board of trustees placing both departments under the government of Rev. William Frazer, the principal of the school, and they have so remained.
At the same time it was voted that Mr. Frazer be principal of the institute and devote himself to personal instruction; and should appoint with himself at least two competent instructors at his own expense, one of whom should be a female; and that he should have the building free of rent, and be entitled to the avails of the term bills, mor or less, as his compensation, with the trustees' guarantee that such avails should not be less than $1,000. This was the first arrangement for employing teachers without a fixed salary. In October following this action was revised so as to leave out the guarantee of the trustees that the term bills should not fall below $1,000; but the acceptance of those conditions was left to the approbation of the principal.
In April, 1838, institution was placed under the superintendence of the regents of the University of the State of New York; and in August, 1838, the first memorial was presented to the regents for an amount of money equaling an amount raised by the trustees for the purchase of a library, as allowed by statute. The purchase of books had before been only by the voluntary contributions of the public, by which a very respectable library had been collected. On the 8th of October, 1838, Mr. Frazer having resigned his position as principal of the school, Silas Fitch, Jr. was employed as principal, the avails of the term of bills to be his compensation. In January, 1849, Roger Case having resigned his seat as president of the trustees, Harvey Mann was appointed to his place. In November, 1839, the contract with Prof. Fitch was so altered as to allow him to receive the money drawn from the State by the regents of the university. In April, 1841, Miss Mary A. White, of Walton, was appointed assistant teacher in the female department, at a salary of $250 a year.
The first catalogue of the school was published in 1837, and they have been published yearly since that time.
In January, 1843, Roger Case succeeded Elihu McCall as president of the board of trustees. In February, 1846, Mr. Fitch resigned his position as principal, to take effect in June following, with the intention of entering the ministry. Rev. George Kerr, D.D., was selected to take his position, and George W. Briggs, A. M., was made assistant teacher in the male department. Prof. Kerr was a man of strong will power, full of life and energy and ardent zeal as a teacher. The school under his supervision and teaching was very successful, and its fame and patronage were largely increased, the school attaining a wide popularity, which it has never lost. Prof. Kerr received a salary of $650 a year. Professor Briggs was succeeded in June, 1849, by M. Sumner Converse, A.M., whose salary was to be $350. At this meeting Miss Adelia O. Buck was appointed instructress in the female department, and Sophia Converse teacher in the primary department. At the same meeting a resolution was passed renting room No. 29 to the E. C. Society for their use, the trustees to defray the expense of fitting it up. The E. C. Society for gentlemen was the first literary association of the institute.
At a meeting of the trustees, held on the 17th of April, 1851, measures were taken to secure a suitable piece of ground on which to build a ladies' boarding hall, and a committee was directed to report a plan for the hall, and to make a contract for its erection. On the 18th day of the same month the committee reported, and the president was directed to pay to Isaac Platt $200 for fifty and seventy-five hundredths rods of land, and to contract with John Edgerton for building the proposed hall at the price of $2,800; the hall to be a wooden building with a basement, and to be forty feet in width, fifty-five fee in length, and three stories above the basement, with square pillars in front, with railing and a piazza floor for each story, and painted white.
In 1848 the Watervurian Society, the second literary society, was organized, and the trustees in 1852 made arrangements with the society to purchase for it a library. This was a successful society. It took its name from Rev. Daniel Waterbury, one of the principal organizers and supporters of the institute, and its first trustee. The society long held it organization and sustained its name.
In 1849 a literary society for young ladies was organized under the name of the Excelsior Society, and in 1852 another, bearing the name of the Aurora Society. These societies have been very prosperous, and have rivaled each other in obtaining members, and the promotion of their objects generally.
In June, 1852, Edward F. B. Orton was appointed assistant teacher in the male department.
In 1856 a third literary society was organized for young gentlemen, under the name of the Independent Society, which in 1878 was consolidated with the Waterburian as the Aplha Phi Society.
At a meeting of the trustees in 1854, a committee was appointed to raise a fund of $10,000 for the endowment of a professorship. The committee reported that Miss Sarah Downs, of Colchester, had subscribed $1,000 toward that fund, and resolutions of thanks to her were passed. At the same meeting the building committee was directed to erect for students' rooms and chapel a building forty feet in width, exclusive of piazza, eighty feet in length, and three stories in height above the basement, with piazza the length of the front, and square columns form the floor to the entablature at the roof, at a cost of $5,000.
On the 9th of March, 1856, the stone institute building was discovered to be on fire, and in spite of all efforts to prevent it burned to the ground, with nearly all its contents. The library, apparatus and other property of the institute and of the students were burned. The building was insured for $3,000. A meeting of the trustees was held on the 29th of the same month, at which it was resolved that measures be taken to raise $15,000 toward rebuilding the structure burned, finish the one in progress of building, and pay all indebtedness. The amount had been so far raised in the May following that the trustees appointed a committee to have charge of the erection of the new building, which was to be ninety-three feet long, forty-two feet wide, and three stories high. While the new chapel building was in progress and partially constructed, it was blown down and entirely demolished, and had to be rebuild from the sills.
The annual exhibitions of the school had so increased in interest and attendance that no building in the place was capable of accommodating them, and a tent was procured for the use of the institute that would cover 25 square rods of ground.
After the burning of the institute library very liberal donations of books were received from several book sellers in New York and other places, and from private individuals.
On the 30th day of April, 1837, Dr. Seymour C. Wilcox was chosen secretary of the board of trustees, in place of Hon. Amos Douglas, deceased, who had for more than twenty-two years correctly and faithfully discharged the duties of clerk of the board, and given his influence and energy in support of the institution. Harvey Mann, continued to act a president of the board to 1865, when Dr. Albert E. Sullard was elected in his stead.
In December, 1860, Prof. Kerr, after fourteen years of energetic and efficient effort, resigned his position as principal of the institution and withdrew from the school. Stephen Holden. A. M. , and Rev. Milan L. Ward, A. M., were principals of the school for the year 1869. Oliver W.Treadwell was appointed principal in 1862, and served for three years. In 1865 George W. Jones was elected principal for three years, to 1868, when Rev. Frederick Jewel had charge of the school for one year. In 1869 Rev. George W. Briggs was called to be the principal. His administration was a success, and the school was prosperous in his hands to the time of his decease, in 1874. Rev. E. M. Rollo was appointed principal and remained to 1877, when Prof. Charles H. Verrill, principal of a State normal school of Pennsylvania was chosen. His administration has been successful and prosperous, and still continues. The school has lost none of its former high reputation for efficient and thorough education. Its organizations has been a success in every respect, and so continues. Very few of the similar institutions of the State that were organized as early as this have continued as prosperous and successful.
The Delaware Literary Institute is now in the forty-fifth year of its incorporation, and during that time nearly seven thousand persons have been enrolled as students of the institution. Nearly every State of the Union has been represented in this school, as well as Europe, and even Africa and China. It would be interesting, would limits permit, to trace those seven thousand students out in their varied vocations. Many are and have been clergymen, representing the different denominations, and of greater or less prominence, and some have gone as missionaries to foreign lands. They are found in nearly every State Legislature, in Congress, and different departments of government; and all the professions and business employments of the day.
The Delaware Literary Institute has always been a pet institution with the public, and especially with the people of Franklin. They have paid their money freely to build up and sustain the institution and they look with pride and gratification to its results.
The following persons have been postmasters at Franklin village since 1815: Simeon Goodman, Amos Douglas, Joseph Merrick, William Waters, W. C. Ripley, G. W. Reynolds, Hiram Edgerton, William B. Hanford and Egbert H. Chamberlin, the present incumbent.
The village now has a population of about 800 persons, many of whom were formerly engaged in farming in the town, but after acquiring a competency have moved into the village to rest from the active duties of farm life. In 1858, the following firms were engaged in the mercantile business in the village: H. Edgerton & Co., A. Douglas & Co.; Nobles & Co.; A. J. Stilson, Bush & Brownson, John Nicol and H. E. Abell; and from that date to the present time but few changes in the number of stores have taken place. William Waters and Amos Douglas, two well known merchants of the place a few years ago, both served clerkships in the old red store, kept by John Edgerton forty-five years ago.
The following is a business directory of the village at the present time:
Dry goods merchants-Beecher & Bartlett, Potter & Harris, A. E. Sullard & Son, Bowers & Blakely and Elijah Roe; hardware dealers-Douglas & Stilson, O. Wilcox; boot and shoe merchants, Edgerton & Strong; furniture dealers-A. Cook Page, G. Henry Barnes; grocers-James Rutherford, Richard B. Jackson, Emery S. Abell, and Wilbur G. Bennett; druggist-M. L. Munson, A. E. Sullard & Son; jewelers-A.S. Chamberlin, J. F. Smith, and George Smith; hotel proprietor, Dr. J. H. Foote; saloon keepers-S. F. Moores, Lyman Judd; physicians-J. H. Foote, Ira Wilcox, C. E. Stebbins, T. M. Edwards; dentists-H. R. Scott, Kneeland & Hine; lawyers-R. T. Johnson, J.K. P. Jackson, L.F. Raymond; shoemakers-R. Dunmore, M. Bartlett, and Thomas Warnock; harness maker, Charles A. Bennett; blacksmiths-S. M. Allen, Babcock & Hubbell, Julius Miller, Elijah Mabie; coopers-W. H. Phelps, Robert Smith, H. E. Baldwin, Sherman Barnes; wagon makers-W.G. Bryant, Peter Heins, L.L. Hamm; liverymen-H. P. Birdsall, J. H. Foote, G. P. Beach; meat markets-Robert Beach, Fitch Burdick; telegraph office, Eli P. Howe; artist, John T. Waters; tailors-Robert Walker, Abram Bush, Daniel Pank, James Flint; marble shop, Charles Warner; insurance agents, Slade & Douglas; furnace, Slade & Rexford; printers, Joseph Eveland & Co; postmasters, Egbert A. Chamberlin; painters-William Brown & Son, Phelps & Brown, Henry Colburn, Eli B. Hopkins.
The Weekly Visitor, afterwards called the Franklin Visitor, was established by George W. Reynolds, March 28th, 1855, and was a Republican organ. In 1860 the paper was published by Abell & Brown, and a few years later was sold to the Delaware Republican office, and was discontinued.
The Franklin Register was founded by Albert D. Hitchcock and Theodore Smith, June 30th, 1868. It was a four page journal, 22 by 32 inches, and was filled with a choice selection of readable news. October 27th, Smith sold out his interest to Hitchcock, who remained sole editor and publisher until, in September, 1869, James Clearwater was associated with him, as publisher, for a few months. February 22nd, 1870, J.K.P. Jackson purchased a half interest and was associated with Mr. Hitchcock until November 8th, 1870, when he bought Hictchcock's interest. December 26yh, 1871, Mr. Jackson sold the office to Smith & Hoyt who continued to publish the paper until April 15th, 1873, when Smith purchased Hoyt's interest. He continued sole proprietor until November 22nd, 1877, when the paper was purchased by N. L. Lyon. From April 1st, 1877, to December 25th, 1877, L. F. Raymond acted as editor and publisher for Mr. Smith. Lyon changed the Register from an independent paper to a Republican organ, and sold it to Joseph Eveland & Co., the present editors and publishers. The Register is an advocate of the Republican party, and is regularly published on Friday of each week, at the rate of $1 a year. It has a circulation of about 800 copies.
Avery T. Northrup laid out the first case of type ever used in the town of Franklin.
The First National Bank of Franklin was formed with a capital of $63,000. At a meeting of the stockholders, held December 24th, 1863, Tracy G. Rich, Amos Douglas, Charles Noble, Sherman M. Hine, John Edgerton, Beriah L. Bowers and William S. Noble were elected directors. At a subsequent meeting of the directors Amos Douglas was elected president and Charles Noble cashier, which offices they have held to the present time, discharging their duties with much credit to themselves, and acceptably to the stockholders, who have re-elected them annually. May 1st, 1864, an increase of $37,000 was made to the capital stock, making the same $100 000. The bank paid semi-annual dividends, the first few years, of six per cent., and at the twenty-sixth divident had paid the shareholders somewhat more than their original amount of stock. At the thirty-first semi-annual divident, December 1st, 1878, the bank had divided $120,290.76 to its stockholders making dividends free of tax.
At a meeting of the directors held March 19th, 1873, Charles A. Douglas was elected vice-president.
At the time of the panic of 1873 this bank had money to pay every deposit called for. On the 14th of June, 1879, the bank reported $28,636.98 surplus and undivided profits.
May 18th, 1875, occurred the death of William S. Noble, an able and efficient director of the bank. At the present time (October 1st, 1879) the seven directors are Amos Douglas, Charles Noble, Sherman M. Hine, Beriah L. Bowers, William B. Hanford, Charles A. Douglas and Frank W. Bartlett.
The charter expires in 1882.
This association was organized November 19th, 1873, with six trustees, as follows: Charles Payne, Albert E. Sullard, Beriah L. Bowers, Sylvester Wheat, William B. Hanford and Sherman Hine. Charles Payne was elected president and William B. Howland secretary and treasurer. To give the board of trustees the means to go forward with the work twenty residents of the town advanced $100 each with which to purchase the grounds and make the necessary survey. These gentlemen were: Sylvester Wheat, William B. Hanford, Albert E. Sullard, Beriah L. Bowers, Charles Payne, Samuel M. Allen, George Stilson, G. Henry Barnes, Frank W. Bartlett, Elijah Roe, Silas G. Smith, Abial Drake, Benjamin T. Cook, Samuel Lloyd, Isaac Elderkin, Andrew T. Treadwell, Sherrill L. Slade, Jacob Gillett, Daniel Miller and Henry S. Edwards.
Twenty-one and one-half acres of very desirable undulating ground lying near the village were purchased for $1,800. The grounds were surveyed and laid out in a very admirable manner by Preston King, Esq., a former teacher of the institute and an engineer of ability, into 1,300 lots or plots, with suitable streets and avenues, so arranged that every lot adjoins a street wide enough for carriages to pass and repass, and carriages can go to any part of the grounds, and return to the entrance without retraveling the same road.
The association has disposed of some seventh lots, at an expense to the purchaser of eight to ten cents a square foot, each full lot containing four hundred square feet. The association grades the lots and turfs the edges of them at its own expense.
Several fine monuments and headstones have already been erected and considerable shrubbery has been set out, and the grounds already present a beautiful appearance. About ninety interments have been made in the grounds.
In 1870 an attempt was made to organize a stock company and build a telegraph line connecting with the lines of Midland Railroad Company; but after a good deal of talk the project fell through, although considerable money had been subscribed and the poles distributed over the proposed line. Upon the failure of this project Mr. Eli P. Howe, a resident of the village, went to work and at his own expense built a line from Franklin to Otego, a distance of four miles, connecting with the lines of the Western Union Company.
The first message sent over the line was sent by Egbert A. Chamberlin, November 1st, 1874, since which date the line has been quite extensively used by the citizens. About 900 messages are annually sent or received over the wires from this office. The line is still owned and operated by Mr. Howe, and reflects much credit on his business tract and perseverance.
The first building destroyed by fire in the town was the house of Captain Samuel Johnson, on the farm now owned by Mr. Miller, of West Brook. This fire occurred December 11th, 1794. At an early date a house belonging to David Anno, and situated on the west side of the creek near "Sullard's bridge", was destroyed by fire and two fo the children perished in the flames.
From that time till the present many fires have occurred in the town, occasioning a lost of a vast amount of property. In 1864, the wagon shop of Drees & Meeker was destroyed by fire. This building was situated nearly on the ground now occupied by the engine-house or S. M. Allen's shop.
February 3d, 1869, occurred the "great fire" of the village, which destroyed over $30,000 worth of property and more than one-half of the business houses of the place. The fire was discovered at 4 o'clock in the morning in a room over the clothing store of A. & J.C. Bush, and was aided by a high wind and a lack of water. In a few months new buildings of a more modern style were erected on the site of the old ones.
In 1870 a large wagon shop, formerly occupied by Drees & Meeker, was destroyed by fire; this building was partially owned at the time by Charles Hanford.
March 19th, 1875, two large buildings were destroyed by fire, and several persons narrowly escaped with their lives. Thee buildings were known as the Grant building and Babcock & Whitney's wagon shop, and were occupied by several different tradesmen and two private families.
Prior to 1875 there had been one or two fire companies organized, but owing to a failure on the prat of the citizens to supply them with suitable apparatus they had disbanded. October 25th, 1875, a meeting was held to organize a fire company. Charles A. Douglas was chosen chairman and George F. Sullard secretary. A constitution and by-laws were adopted and a company consisting of thirty three active young men was organized, with the following officers: Frank W. Bartlett, foreman; William Brinkman, first assistant; Waldo D. Backus, second assistant; George F. Sullard, recording secretary; Charles A. Douglas, financial secretary; Charles E. Miller, treasurer; Byron G. Jackson, steward. A hose company consisting of ten men was then drafted from the organization, of which company Robert Smith was elected foreman and Charles Warner assistant. A committee was appointed to solicit persons to become members of the companies. At a meeting held December 7th, 1875, a committee was appointed to procure uniforms for the members of the company-to consist of a blue flannel shirt, cloth cap and leather belt. These were furnished to each member on payment of $1, which sum was to be refunded on his withdrawing from the company.
At the annual meeting held January 4th, 1876, the old officers were re-elected, excepting the steward, to which office Watson S. Wood was chosen. Robert Smith was elected janitor. At the regular meeting held January 2nd, 1877, the officers of 1875 were unanimously re-elected. At a meeting held July 3d, 1877, a new constitution and by-laws ere adopted, and the old company was re-organized under the name of the Franklin Fire Department, consisting of an engine company and a hose company, each organization being separately officered, but both under the command of a chief engineer. The following persons have acted as chief engineers: 1877, Ira Wilcox; 1878-1879, Charles A. Bennett. Clerk's-1877, George F. Sullard; 1878, Louis F. Raymond; 1879, Elmer W. Jackson. New uniforms, trumpets, etc. have been recently furnished the department officers. The company numbers fifty men.
At a corporation meeting held in 1875 a tax of $1,075 was voted to be raised and expended in purchasing a fire engine, a hose cart and three hundred feet of hose; and the trustees authorized Sherrill L. Slade to make the purchases, which he did the same year.
Since that date additional hose, ladders, etc., have been furnished, and a number of reservoirs constructed at the expense of the corporation.
No engine house has yet been erected, but a very suitable building has been rented for the purpose by the trustees on Water street.
Franklin Lodge, No. 562, F. & A. M. was instituted August 1st, 1874, and the following officers were elected and installed: W. M. Hiram Edgerton; S. W. William Smith; J.W.D.D. Thompson; treasurer, John Edgerton' secretary, A. G. Stilson; S.D. Clark F. Brazee; J. D., Henry Phelps; tyler, W. H. Nicols. The following persons have acted as W. M. since its organization: 1864-1872, Hiram Edgerton; 1873, Beriah L. Bowers; 1874, 1875, William Brinkman;' 1876, Charles E. Miller; 1877, 1878, Hiram Edgerton. The officers of 1879 are: Ira Wilcox, W.M.; S.W., Alfred Phelps; J.W., M.P. McCoon; treasurer, W. Z. Bryant; secretary, David A. Betts; S.D., William Brinkman; J.D., Horace S. Phelps; tyler, Theodore Smith. The membership is one hundred and twenty-nine.
There was a lodge of free masons in the town before the Morgan excitement, known as Franklin Lodge, No. 251. This lodge was instituted October 13th, 1815, but succumbed to the influence of the excitement above referred to. John Edgerton, of this town and lodge, was appointed deputy grand master of all lodges in the county at this time, 1830, and was empowered to take charge of and keep all the effects of the lodges. This warrant was signed by Morgan Lewis, then grand master, but Mr. Edgerton did not see fit to act. The present lodge room is in the Bush and Abell block.
Ouleout Valley Lodge I.O. of O. F. was formed in 1848 Hiram Edgerton being elected to fill the highest office, which he continued to hold until the lodge disbanded in 1856. In 1855 the membership was thirty-eight.
Ouleout Valley Lodge I. O. of G. T. Was organized January 18th, 1879, and the following officers elected: W.C. T., C.A. Douglas; W.V.T., Mrs. Whitaker; W.S. J. W. Barnes; W.F.S., R. P. Burns; W. T., Elijah Mabie; W. M., Charles Warner; W. Chaplain, Enos Fisher; W.D. M. Minnie E. Burns; I. G., F. H. Clayton; O.G. , Smith Taylor. The lodge numbers seventy-five members and meets on Monday evenings. The present W.C.T. is Rev. T. J. Whitaker. This is the second lodge of good templars instituted in the village, the first lodge having surrendered its charter. There was also at one time a lodge of Sons and Daughters of Temperance, but they too have disbanded.
OULEOUT SPORTSMEN'S ASSOCIATION
This association was organized and incorporated under the laws of the State, October 11th, 1879, for the purpose of enforcing the laws in relation to fish and game, and of restocking the forests with game birds and the streams with fish; also for mutual improvement and the fostering of public opinion in all that relates to the better preservation of game and fish. The first officers elected were: Ira Wilcox, president; Charles A. Douglas, vice-president; M. P. McCoon, secretary and treasurer. On account of ill health Mr. McCoon resigned his position after serving a few months, and D. H. Harris was elected to fill the vacancy. In may, 1879, the association procured 30,000 speckled brook trout and placed them in the waters of the Ouleout and its tributaries. Several parties have already been severely fined for violations of the game laws, by the instrumentality of the club. Glass balls and a Card's rotary ball trap have been procured for the use of the club, which now numbers thirty-four members. The present officers are: L. M. Hine. President' Isaac Buell, vice-president; G. F. Sullard, secretary and treasurer. An executive committee is also usually elected to enforce the laws.
The first public religious services in the town were held as early as 1786 and 1787, at the houses of the different settlers, then numbering less than six families. Thee prayer and praise meetings were conducted by some of the good brothers, who usually read a sermon, sometimes two of them, which they had brought with them from "down east," as the farewell gift of some kind hearted pastor. If any of the families failed to be represented a brother was delegated to go to their clearing and find out the cause, which was duly reported on his return. Occasionally a preacher came into the settlement and labored for a few days or weeks, seeking out the "scattered sheep" of this western wilderness.
Saturday, July 14th, 1792, Rev. Adam Hamilton, a Baptist preacher, came to the Ouleout settlement, and he preached every day for several weeks, being warmly received and entertained by the settlers. He then went back to his home in Connecticut, where he remained until January 5,th, 1793, when he returned to the Ouleout settlement, and on the 15th day of the same month organized the first church ever formed in the present town.
FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH
The organization of the First Baptist Church of Franklin took place on the 15th day of January, 1793, at the house of Gad Merrick. The meeting was opened by singing, followed by prayer. Elder Adam Hamilton was chosen moderator, and Hugh Thompson clerk. The moderator then read the articles of faith and church covenant of the church in Westville, Mass., and they were unanimously adopted by the meeting. The moderator then gave the right hand of fellowship to the following named persons, constituting them a "Baptist church of Christ:" Nathan Tupper, James Webster, Asa Turner, Gad Merrick, Archelaus Green, Solomon Green, Levi Bride, Abel Buell, Hugh Thompson, Chauncey Parker, Oliver Abell, Polly Case, Patty Clark, Isabel Turner, Sarah Parker, Polly Andrews, Abigail Tupper, Ruth Wattles, Lucy Hughston and Mary Thompson.
Isabel Merrick related her experience at the same meeting, and as received as a candidate for baptism. The meeting closed by singing a psalm suited to the occasion, and prayer by Elder Hamilton.
On the following Sunday, January 20thth, the church came together for the celebration of the Lord's Supper, and Elder Hamilton administered the ordinance to twenty-five members of the church. It was voted that Hugh Thompson serve the church as deacon on trial.
At a meeting held on the 18th of May following, Hugh Thompson, Asa Turner and Archelaus Green were chosen delegates to attend the meeting of the Shafsbury Association to request a correspondence with them.
On the 22nd day of June following the church met at the house of Moses Clark, and the Lord's Supper was administered by Elder Morfit.
At a meeting held on Monday, December 22nd, 1794, the church voted to build a house for public worship, and appointed Nathaniel Wattles, Hugh Thompson and Asa Turner a committee to superintend the matter. While the matter of building was in contemplation and preparation, meetings were held at the houses of different members of the church, they having occasional preaching but no regular pastor till Elder James Bacon united with them on the 15th of August, 1795; he remained pastor until November 16th, 1798.
After considerable effort and delay the society built a house of worship in the north-central part of the town, on the hill a few rods west of where the red school-house now stands, near Simon P. Smith's. At that time this place, "the Corners", was a center of business, and was the village of the town.
The first meeting mentioned by the records as being held in the new meeting house was on the 29th of April, 1808.
As time passed on, and the town became more thickly settled, the business center came to be where the village of Franklin now stands; so the church purchased a plot ground in the village, on Second street, of John Edgerton, and built their present place of worship, which they commenced occupying in the spring of 1834. The house has been remodeled several times, and to-day presents a very beautiful appearance on the inside. The society owns a very handsome parsonage. There is a burying-ground in the rear of the church. The following persons have taken the pastorate of the church as indicated: 1795, James Bacon; 1802, Daniel Robinson; 1818, Silas Spaulding; 1823, Benjamin Swain; 1827, Charles W. Hubbard; 1830, James Amner; 1833, Alexander Smith; 1837, Chancellor Hartshorn; 1844, Henry Robinson; 1850, Levi Morse; 1853, J. B.Rogers; 1855, George F. Post; 1858, Levi Morse (recalled); 1864, A. J. Choplin; 1866, B. F. Williams; 1870, J. S. Webber; 1873, Leonard Smith; 1878, Thomas J. Whitaker, whois the present pastor.
FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH
This church was organized on Sunday, October 12th, 1793, by the Rev. Mr. Huntington, a Congregational preacher, who was a missionary to this county in that year. But little is known of the church and its struggles until 1807. From that date the records have been faithfully kept, both of the church and the society. A house of worship was built in 1801, and the interior finished in 1802 or 1803. Joseph Shepherdson did the inside work for $1,250. Aaron and Jairus Chamberlin were sureties for him for the faithful carrying out of the contract. Nathan Edgerton and Elias Osborn were the committee on the part of the society to let out the work. The church was in shape nearly identical with the present edifice, except that there was no steeple.
The house was unpainted and without carpet or stoves for many years, and half the places for windows in the back side were closed with rough boards; yet two religious services were held each Sunday during the coldest weather, and the only fire in the building was a few coals brought in in a foot stove. At noon the congregation would repair between the services to some good brother's or sister's house, and eat their luncheon by the side of the fireplace. The ox teams were left tied by the fence, or under a tree, however, cold the weather.
In April, 1807, a church meeting was held at the church. Rev. Joel T. Benedict was chosen moderator, and Isaac Williams clerk. A committee, consisting of Joel T. Benedict. Joseph Merrick and Jarius Chamberlin, was elected "to revise the articles of faith: and report as soon as possible.
At a society meeting held March 22nd, 1808, Joseph Merrick and Azel Bowers were the presiding officers and Amos Douglas, Esq., was elected clerk of the society. The trustees elected were Azariah Willis and John Stanley, of the first class; Daniel Swift and Reuben Smith, of the second Class; and Aaron Chamberlin and Jairus Chamberlin, of the third class. It was voted that a meeting of the society be held on the third Tuesday of March of each year.
May 17th, 1808, c call was extended to Rev. Joel T. Benedict to be pastor of the church, at a salary of $400 per year, with his firewood "in addition". He accepted the call and remained pastor of the church for seven years, and was succeeded by Rev. Caleb Knight, who commenced his labors in 1817, at a salary fo $600 per year, which was reduced in 1820 to $400.
In 1825 a call was given to Rev. Daniel Waterbury. He accepted, and began his labors December 1st, 1825, at a salary of $450 on condition "that $250 shall be paid in money, or money and produce, at the market price of such produce; $200 in produce at the usual market prices, and if the cash price of wheat at Catskill shall be, during any year, less than the sum of six shillings per bushel, then the salary shall be lessened in proportion; but should the price of wheat exceed ten shillings per bushel, then the salary shall be increased accordingly." In January, 1833, his salary was increased to $500, and in 1835 to $600.
At a special meeting of the society held May 21st, 1835, it was voted that the society unite with Rev. Daniel Waterbury in requesting the Presbytery of Delaware to dissolve the pastoral connection between him and the society on the 1st day of July. Mr. Waterbury died at Warsaw, N.Y., December 22nd, 1838, at the age of 46 years, and in the 18th year of his ministry. The church at Franklin had his remains brought here and a stone erected to his memory. During the early history of this church, if a member was guilty of any unchristian conduct he as at once cited before the church, and an investigation took place. The largest number of charges were for breaking the Sabbath day, or absence from church services.
Rev. A. Hart was pastor from July, 1835, until July 9th, 1838; Rev. J. B. Hubbard from 1839 to 1840; Rev. Calvin Warren in 1840; Rev. John Dodd part of 1841; Owing to a misunderstanding the church was divided in July, 1841, and a new church formed, which was in 1862 merged into a Presbyterian church, and built a house of worship on Second street.
January 17th, 1842, the old society passed resolutions to repair the church, and Herman Treadwell contracted to do the work. Joel Gillett, Joseph H. Merrick, John Edgerton and Amos Douglas, jr., were elected a building committee, and at the annual meeting held March 21st, 1843, it was "resolved that the trustees be authorized to make such arrangements as they may judge proper for removing the meeting-house sheds off of land owned by John Edgerton, and on to the public ground on the northeasterly side thereof."
After the church had been repaired it was again dedicated, in October, 1842, since which date the following clergymen have been pastors: Rev. John R. Keep, 1842-44; 1846, Rev. Moses Thatcher; 1846 to October, 1855, Rev. John F. Ingersoll; 1855 to March, 1857, Rev. Henry H. Morgan; 1857 to 1860 Rev. S. P. Marvin; 1860 to 1867, Rev. Thomas S. Potwin; 1867 to 1873, Rev. Joel J. Hough; December 1st, 1873 to August 22, 1876, Rev. Charles Noble; October 1st, 1876 to January 1st, 18779, Rev. S. W. Meek, since which date the church has been without a pastor.
On June 1878, the Congregational and Presbyterian churches and societies, by a nearly unanimous vote, resolved to unite the two organizations into one body, under the name of the First Congregational Church and Society. This plan was at once consummated, and the churches are now worshiping together, and use the former Presbyterian house as their place of worship, it having been enlarged and handsomely refitted for the purpose. The old Congregational meeting-house was sold to James Rutherford for $2,200 and has been fitted up for a town hall. The membership of the church at the present time is 390, that of the Sunday-school 241. The number of families in the society is 177. Value of church property, including two parsonages, about $10,000. Prayer meetings are regularly held on Thursday evenings, and large donations are annually made for charitable purposes.
FIRST METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
This church was organized by the Rev. John Bangs. The class then formed worshiped in the school-house in Bartlett Hollow, near Avery Tennant's. Here Herman Bangs, afterward so noted in the publishing and missionary enterprises of the church, is said to have preached his first sermon. It is thought that the firs sermon was preached in 1818, and the first class formed in 1823, by John Bangs, who appointed William Gay leader. The first place of Methodist worship in the village was the free masons' hall, which was purchased of them, and is now owned and occupied as a private residence by Mrs. Reuben Smith. On the 4th day of November, 1833, the male members of the society met in this hall and elected the following persons trustees: Ebenezer Bennett, jr., Daniel Northaway, Harvey Scott, Abial Drake, Chauncey Smith, Jared Foote and Benjamin F. Brownell. A certificate of incorporation was granted, bearing the above date, and signed by Beach Jennings, Justice of the peace.
In 1834 a church was erected upon the present site, and upon the third day of the following December a deed was obtained for the land upon which it was built, which plot or site contained one-fourth of an acre, and was purchased by John Edgerton for $180. The dedication of the church was followed by a series of meetings, which resulted in several conversions. Rev. Elbert Osborn was the preacher at this time.
The regular congregations in those days were small, and the weekly prayer meetings often were held at the residence of Daniel Northaway. In 1851 the church was thoroughly repaired and improved. A new class and prayer meeting room was put on, the building repaired and blinds added., as well as new paper, carpets and cushions for the interior.
In 1867 the church was again enlarged and remodeled, a tower being added and the walls frescoed; new carpets, cushions and stoves were also added. Rev. R. H. Kelly was then pastor. In 1864 a house and lot adjoining the church was purchased for a parsonage, at a cost of $1,000. Rev. E. B. Pierce was the first ministerial occupant. In the spring of 1858 the circuit was divided into Franklin, Croton and North Franklin charges. The following is a list of preachers who have been stationed here since that time: William Stevens, O. P. Dales, Aaron Rogers, E. B. Pierce, R. H. Kelly, W. F. Brush, A. Gaylord, W. S. Winans, E. F. Barlow, Gideon Draper and F. C. Morgan, who is the present pastor.
The pastor of this church usually preaches every Sunday afternoon at Bennett Hollow, in the souther part of the town. The present membership of the society is two hundred and twenty-five; that of the Sunday-school one hundred and seventy-five. The value of the church property is $6,000.
This church was organized on Monday, December 5th, 1842, under the name of the First Orthodox Religious Society and Church in Franklin. The following society officers were elected: Trustees-Asa Nelson, Alexander Searles, J. H. Barnes, Linus Porter, W. S. Noble and Harvey Mann; Edward Douglas, clerk, and J. O. Parker, treasurer. Mr. Douglas declining to serve as clerk Charles Noble was elected in his place. Ground was bought for a building lot, and a fine church, parsonage, and sheds for teams were built thereon. Rev. James McChaine was the fist pastor of the church. September 18th, 1843, it was voted that Rev. Samuel J. White be called as pastor, at a salary of $500 a year. In 1851 Rev. Mr. Christopher was pastor. The following ministers have since been pastors: from 1852 to May 1st, 1858, Rev. T. S. Clarke; 1858 to 1861, Rev. C. S. Dunning; 1861 to 1863, Rev. J. F. Severance; 1863 to 1866, Rev. Henry Calahan; 1866 to 1869, Rev. W. A. Addy; ;1869 to 1878, Rev. W. A. Dunning. June 11th, 1878, the church voted to united with the Congregational church, which action was at once consummated.
ST. PAUL'S EPISCOPAL CHURCH
St. Paul's parish was organized January 20th, 1865, and the work of building a church and calling a rector was at once placed in the hands of proper parties. April 18th, 1865, Rev. Octaviess Appelgate, of Brooklyn, began his labors in the parish. He remained rector until November 28th, 1868. This young rector brought with him as a present from the Sunday-school of Grace church, Brooklyn, a handsome stone font which cost $170, besides other substantial gifts. A lot for a building site was purchased at a cost of $600, and the work of building a church at once commenced; and on Tuesday, May 30th, 1865, the corner stone was laid by the rector, several other parishes being largely represented. Fully five hundred persons witnessed the ceremonies. Rev. D. S. Tuttle, of Zion church, Morris, delivered the address. From the Church Journal of that year we take the following historical reference:
"The history of this parish is so remarkable as to deserve a brief notice. Ineffectual efforts to establish the church here had been made several times, beginning as far back as 1840. * * * Last fall a considerable number of families began to seek for more healthy spiritual counsel and a purer worship. They were wisely directed, and by the assistance of the neighboring rectors, the Rev. Messrs. Hall, of Delhi, Simpson of Hobart, Aluson of Walton, Tuttle of Morris and especially Kidder of Unadilla church services, intermitted for more than eight years, were resumed in December. In a few weeks a subscription for a church reached upwards of $6,000 in the parish; since increased by gifts from churchmen in Unadilla, Delhi and Brooklyn to more than $7,600. The cost of the church and grounds complete will be nearly $10,000.
From the same journal we take the following notice of the first confirmation services held in the parish: "The confirmation was one unprecedented in any church in our diocese in a retired village and at so early a period of its history. Here were the aged heads of families, husband and wife and their grown up children, kneeling side by side; leading citizens of the place, persons intelligent, experience, well understanding the grounds of their profession, decided in their allegiance to Christ their Saviour, and decided in adherence to His church and His sacred institutions. * * * Subsequently, at the hospitable home of a leading member of the congregation, the bishop exclaimed: 'Brethren, I cannot leave you without saying that this confirmation is unequaled in the whole experience of my ten years' episcopate. I have in extensive parishes and city missions at times confirmed seventy, one hundred, nay, one hundred and twenty-vive: but never so large a number, and of such a character, entire families and prominent citizens, and in so young and retired a parish.'"
July 4th, 1869, Rev. William M. Ogden became rector, and he labored in the parish until October 9th, 1870, when he was succeeded by Rev. Joel Davis, who remained until January 1st, 1873. Rev. Eugene L. Loy was then engaged as rector, and he remained until October 1st, 1875, when Rev. W. C. Grubbe succeeded him, who continued in the position until April 1st, 1879, since which date the church has been without a rector. During the summer of 1879 Prof. G. P. Bristol was employed to read service. A new bell was purchased in 1879 and placed in the tower at an expense of $300.
THE VILLAGE OF CROTON
This pleasant little village is situated in the southeastern part of the town, on Croton creek, and is surrounded by a rich farming community. The village contains two churches; Methodist and Baptist; a hotel, kept by Milton Graham and four stores, kept as follows: Dry goods and groceries, Treadwell & Munn and J. Olney Rowe; groceries, Linus Ogden; hardware, Leroy Saunders. There are also a harness shop, a cooperage, store and blacksmith shop, and the usual other business places of a country village. The village sustains two physicians, viz: Dr. Lorenzo Huyck and Dr. Boyd; a flourishing village school, and a Good Templars' lodge.
This place was known for many years by the name of "Jug City", which cognomen, it is said, originated from the fact that Miner Treadwell, an early tavern-keeper, used to get his liquor from the distillery situated near by the village in a three-gallon jug, which he had filled regularly every morning; and on training days , or other extra occasions, it was always found necessary to send the jug to the still several times during the day. The old building which Treadwell used for an inn is still standing, and used for a dwelling-house. Samuel Webster and Morgan Merritt kept the first stores, and Drs. Henry Cody, Seward Smith, L. F. Titus and J. W. Smith were the early physicians of that vicinity. Dr. Cody lived on the premises now owned by Hartson Treadwell. The present population of th village is 225.
THE BAPTIST CHURCH OF CROTON
This church was organized in June, 1854, with a membership of 129. It was formerly a major part of the Baptist church of West Meredith, which organized in 1811. A house of worship was erected at Croton village in the summer of 1854, at a cost of $3,200.
Rev. J. N. Adams was the first pastor, and remained as such for twelve years. The first officers were Ithiel Brownson and Linus Wolcott, deacons, and Henry Jackson. The second pastor was Rev. J. Evans, who remained five years. He was succeeded by Rev. A. K. Batchelor, who remained two years. Rev. W. H. Pease served two and one-half years; Rev. J. L. Davis six months. Rev. David Silver is the present pastor. The present deacons of the church are Linus Wolcott, Linus Ogden and Hermon Brownson.. Mr. Brownson is also the church clerk. The church property is worth $5,000.
THE METHODIST CHURCH OF CROTON
The first Methodists in this section were William Gay and his wife Almira. They came to the town to reside in 1819, from Sharon, Conn., bringing with them letters from the M. E. Church of that place, signed by Rev. Samuel Howe, They worshiped some time with their Baptist brethren, but did not feel free to join them. At the organization of a class in October, 1823, by the Rev. John Bangs, consisting of only sic members, William Gay was appointed class leader, which position he filled for many years. Mr. Gay was the father of Methodism in Croton. It is related as a fact that Rev. John Bangs was one preaching at a camp meeting held near Croton, when he was so much in earnest for the salvation of the souls of his audience that the sound of his voice could be distinctly heard a miles away.
The class did not grow rapidly at first. The records show that in 1826 there were but seven members, and three probationers.
They met a first in the old school-house which stood were George Jenning's house now stands, having preaching once in two weeks, at the close of school on a week day. They afterward worshiped in what was known as the "Bell school-house", which stood near the site of the present Baptist church.
In 1848 the church was built, at a cost of $1,500. It has since been repaired three times, and in 1877 was enlarged and refitted, to meet the wants of the society. A parsonage was built near the church in 1852. Prior to 1858 this church was included with the Franklin and Ouleout charges, and two preachers were employed, but since that date the church has been by itself. The following ministers have been stationed there as pastors: In 1858, Ira Ferris; 1859, 1860, W. F. Harris; 1861, 1862, E. B. Pierce; 1863, 1864, J. W. Gorse; 1865, 1866, W. W. Shaw; 1867, 1868, H. W. Ackerly; 1869, A. Ackerly; 1870,1871, W. H. Smith; 1872, 1873, E. F. Barlow; 1874, 1875, W. S. Winans; 1876, 1877, F. L. Wilson; 1878, 1879, P. N. Chase, who is the present incumbent.
The church has a membership of 221 in ful connection, and 17 probationers. The Sunday-school numbers 219, with an average attendance of 145. M. R. Bourne is superintendent. The trustees and officers of the church are: J. O. Rowe, D. N. Georgia, H. L. Wheat, Albert Payne, Henry Boyd, Clinton Smith and Edward Dumond; stewards-G. W. Swart, L. H. Boyd, W. B. Wheat, Ely Jester, H. Scott, F. Drake, G. W. Wheat, J. O. Rowe and C. Smith; class leaders-H. L. Wheat, S. Rowe, O. C. Georgia, E. Dumond and G. W. Wheat.
William Gay, the father of the church, died August 24th, 1861; but, like the beautiful trees which stand in front of the church, and were planted by his hands, his memory is ever green. His wife, although past four score years of age, still lives to behold what Goth hath wrought. The entire property owned by this church is valued at $6,400.
Croton Lodge, I. O. of G. T. was organized December 18th, 1875, by George Bowen, jr. of Syracuse, with 69 members. The following are among the first officers of the lodge: E. J. Kelley, L. D.; Abraham Crawley, W. C. T.; Hattie E. Winans, W. V. T.; A. L. VanTassel, W. S.; Luisa F. Payne, W.A.S.; E. J. Kelley, W. F. S.; Nettie M. Brownson, W. T.; M.X. Kellogg, W. C.; Bellmont Georgia, W. M.; Mary E. Cleveland, W. D. M.; Frank Cleveland, W. I. G.; Lavelle H. Boyd, W. O. G. ; Emily H. Bourne, W. R. H. S.; Fannie Van Tassell, W. L. H. S. This lodge is one of the strongest organizations of the kind in the county, and has done a great deal of work for the cause of temperance. The present membership numbers 134. The meetings are regularly held on Friday evenings and largely attended. Charles Stoddard is W.C. T., and S. J. Scrambling W. Secretary of the present quarter.
Juvenile Temple No. 185 was instituted February 14th, 1878, with thirteen members. This organization is composed of children who are too young to belong to the Good Templars, and their pledge binds them to abstain from liquor, tobacco, and the use of profane words. This temple is at present under the superintendence of Mrs. Dr. Huyck and Mrs. M. S. Kellogg. The number of members is 48. Meetings are held on Saturday afternoon.
The following is a list of the present officers, all of them under fifteen years of age: C. T., Welsey Baldwin; V. T., Jennie Prime; R. S., Howard Knapp; M., Henry Prime; P.C.T., Charlie Tuffer; O. G., Charles Jordan; I. G. Hattie Noble; Ch., Clementia Goldsmith. Mr. Alpheus Perkins acts as financial secretary, and Mrs. Phebe H. Perkins as treasurer for the temple.
EMERY S. ABELL came to Franklin in 1833, from Lebanon, Conn., where he was born August 5th, 1813. He was employed in lumbering and farming at North Franklin up to 1846, then in milling for four years, then at farming until 1866, when he engaged in mercantile pursuits. In 1835 he was married to Ruth M. Northway, of Massachusetts, and his five children, one of whom, Otis, was in the Union army during the Rebellion.
DWIGHT BARTLETT, son of Frederick Bartlett, is the sixth child of a family of eight, and was born in 1835. He and his brother Lemuel are partners in farming. In 1870 he married Jennie Kittle, of Franklin. Their only child is Charles E Bartlett. Mr. Bartlett has filled town offices of trust.
GEORGE BENEDICT was born in Greene county, N.Y. He has been a farmer since 1869, and was formerly a blacksmith. He married Susan, daughter of Harry Taylor, in 1859, and they have two children-Charles N. and Jennie E. Jesse, Mr. Benedict's father, was soldier in 1812.
IRA S. BENNETT is the son of Abijah Bennett who was in the war of 1812, and whose father was a Revolutionary soldier. Ira S. was born in 1835, and married, in 1863, Sarah J. White, of Franklin; he commenced as a farmer in 1856.
DANIEL W. BENNETT was born in Franklin April 10th, 1827. He began farming in 1847 for himself and is still so engaged. Harriet, daughter of Frederick Bartlett, of Franklin, became his wife in 1845, and they have two married and two unmarried children.
SAMUEL BORST was born in Schoharie county, N.Y. in1839. In 1867 he engaged in the hardware trade in Franklin, and before completing his first year in business was burned out. Arrangements were at once made for a new business, which he continued to 1873. October 6th, 1862, he married Marion Theall, of Otsego, N.Y., and their union is blessed by three children-Edna B., Bertha W. and Levi L.
CHARLES A. BOSTWICK is a native of the town of Franklin, born May 5th, 1834. He passed four years in California, one year in Missouri, and in 1857 commenced farming in his native town, in which he is engaged at present. He married Ellen White, of the same town, in1857, who died in 1873, leaving three children.
BERIAH L. BOWERS was born in Franklin, February 23d, 1826. Since April 1st, 1861, he has been a general dealer in merchandise at the village of Franklin; he is the only living descendant of a pioneer family. In 1848 he married Gracia A. Hine, of Franklin. He was supervisor in 1875. His grandfather settled in Franklin in 1795, and the latter's father was in the French and Indian war.
HENRY BOYD came from Springville, Mass., where he was born in 1816, and now resides upon the same farm, near Croton village, where his father settled in 1816. His life has been spent in farming, except four years in a store in Croton. He has been twice married; had two children by the first marriage. In 1850 he married Lydia Baldwin, of Otego, and has four children of this marriage. Mr. Boyd was in the 144th N. Y. volunteers, and his son Amos A. lost his life in the service. Orsemus B., the other so, was in the same regiment until1863; went to West Point, and is now at Fort Clark, Texas in the 8th U.S. cavalry.
ERASTUS BRASEE was born in Franklin October 29th, 1827and is one of the most extensive farmers of the town. In 1862 he was united in marriage with Miss Cook, daughter of A. Cook of Greene county, N.Y., and they have four children-Jane M., Orrin H., Merritt and Charles L.
DEDRICK BRINKMAN was born in Germany in 1806, and emigrated to this country in 1835. He was a cabinet maker formerly, but for thirty years past has been a farmer. In 1837 he married Elizabeth Varn Horst, from Prussia. Only one of their ten children has been taken from them, and he died in his country's service.
WHITMAN Z. BRYANT was born December 19th, 1836, in Davenport. He is a carriage maker by trade, and was married to Emily M. Gay, of Franklin, N.Y. who died December, 1878. Mr. Bryant's grandfather, of the same name, was an 1812 soldier.
HARRY BUELL is the son ob Abel Buell, who settled on Handsome Brook as early as 1791. Harry was born July 23d, 1805, and has been a farmer the greater portion of his adult life; but ax-heive manufacturing is his especial delight. In 1878, when seventy-three years old, he cut the timber and made with his own hands $180 worth, which he sold at one time. He married Sarepta Loveland for his second wife.
ELIJAH B. CHAMBERLIN was born in Franklin in 1822. He is an extensive farmer of the town, and has been diligently engaged since 1843. In 1850 he united in marriage with Amelia S. Buell, of Franklin, and they now have living six children.
EGBERT A. CHAMBERLIN is the postmaster at Franklin village, and has been for ten years; prior to that he was in the drug and stationery business with his brother Albert. He was born August 12th, 1839, and in 1863 married Ella G. Olmstead; their only child, Nellie O., was born July 22nd, 1871. Albert Chamberlin married Augusta M. Eells, of Walton, who died in 1875, leaving one child-Cora E.
COLONEL B. T. COOK is the son of Jacob Coo, an early resident of Kortright. The colonel was the middle child in a group of nine, and was born in 1813 in Connecticut. At the age of five years he came to Delaware county with his parents. At the age of twenty-two he took charge of his father's extensive farm. In 1855 he married Frances A. Wright, and became an extensive farmer and dairyman for himself. They have three children living. Mr. Cook was colonel of the 11th regiment of cavalry of Otsego county for four years, and a captain in the Anti-Rent war.
JAMES CRAWFORD came to Delaware county in1806, when only one year old; his father moved from Washington county, N.Y. He is a farmer of many years' experience. He was married in 1829, and has two children-Sheldon W. and Fannie E.
HARVEY J. DELAMATER is a native of Middletown, Delaware county, N.Y., born July 2nd, 1845. He began farming in1875. He married Mary A. Faulkner in 1871. Their only child is named Nora E. Delamater. Mr. D's ancestors were prominent in the struggles with the mother country.
WILLIAM A. DEWEY was born in Franklin in 1838. He has always been a farmer, except two years, when he was in mercantile life in Franklin in the firm of Noble, Potter & Dewey. He married Lodema A. Kilborn, in 1859. Frederick L. Dewey is their only child now living.
JAMES T. DEZELL is a native of Kortright, born February 7th, 1842. In 1866 he married Jennie Brownson, of Croton, and established the carriage business there. They have four children-Freddie B., Nettie, Mary and Jennie. Mr. D. was a participant in the dangers of the late Rebellion, as a member of the 144th N. Y. volunteers.
AMOS DOUGLAS was born in Franklin in 1813. He began at seventeen as a clerk, and at twenty-two was one of the firm of Douglas & Stilson , which continued thirteen years, changing to Douglas & Co., then Douglas & Hine, Mr. Douglass passed twenty-six years in active and successful mercantile life. By feeble health he was obliged to sell his interest in 1862, and at the formation of the First National Bank of Franklin he was made its president, which position he has held over fifteen years with satisfaction to all. He married Marietta Hine in1842, and has three sons living. Charles A. is cashier of the bank; Amos S. is an insurance agent in the firm of Slade & Douglas; and William E. is a successful physician at Lisle, Broome county, N.Y.
ABIAL DRAKE was born on the farm he now resides on in 1817. He worked by the year between 1838 and 1846, and then set up for himself, marrying Cordelia Wheat, daughter of Silas Wheat, of Franklin.
ULYSSES DRAKE was in early life a teacher, but commenced farming in 1836, at the age of twenty-four. In October, 1844, he married Grace Stewart, of Delhi. He has filled very important offices in his town and church.
JOHN P. DREES came to Franklin in 1862. He was born in France November 18th, 1819, and emigrated to New Jersey in 1849. In 1844 he married L. Clementine Boucher, and has five children living. He is a carriage maker and painter at Franklin.
HENRY S. EDWARDS is an extensive farmer. He was bor December 5th, 115. In 1836 he commenced farming; in 1839 he married Laura Beardslee, of Otego, N.Y. They are both descendants of early settlers, and their ancestors were active in pioneer times, and even in the war of the Revolution.
EZRA EVANS, son of Jeremiah Evans, was born in Schoharie county, N.Y., May 8th, 1831. He began farming in 1852, and was married in 1867 to Susan Stewart of Meredith, N.Y.; their children are Roy and Jennie. Mr. Evans enlisted and was engaged in the last few months of the Rebellion.
JOSEPH EVELAND was born December 12th, 1844, at Roxbury. He married Miss Josephine Liljegren. Joseph Eveland and W. T. Liljegren are publishers of the Franklin Register.
DR. J. H. FOOTE belongs to the Connecticut stock of Footes, but was born in Chenango county, May 4th, 1829. In 1856 he commenced the practice of medicine in Franklin, and had a large practice as a homoeopathic physician. In 1867 he purchased the old Franklin Hotel, and was a successful host. In 1870 he rebuilt the hotel, making a large and commodious three-story house, in every way worthy of the beautiful village, and ample in accommodation for all who may come. He still has a lucrative practice in his profession.
DAVID FOOTE was born at Otego, N.Y., in 1812, and is a grandson of Charles Foote, an early settler of the county. He taught winters, farmed by the month summers, worked on shares, and now has a beautiful farm of one hundred and thirty acres. He married Mary Parsons, of Franklin.
RUSSELL FOOTE, a grandson of Charles Foote, a pioneer of Delaware county, was born December 14th, 1810 in Franklin. He has been a wagon maker and farmer through life. He married Sylvia Loveland in 1842. Augusta and Frances H. are their only children living.
ATTICUS M. FRAIL was born in Davenport September 25th, 1848. He follows teaching, together with farming, and has a sister, Eliza, who is a successful teacher. He was married in 1874 to Jessie A. Granger, of South Valley, Otsego county, N.Y. and they have one child, named Egbert C. Frail.
JACOB GILLETT was born at Franklin, September 5th, 1820, and married Laura Cleveland in1847. In 1851 he commenced farming, and has followed it since. He has five children. His grandfather, Ezekiel Gillett, was in the Revolutionary war, and his father, Joel, was in the war of 1812.
HENRY GRANGER is a native of Vermont, born June 9th, 1817, and came to Delaware county with his parents when one year old. He has cared for himself since he was twelve years old, and since he was twenty-four has been a farmer. He married Caroline Munson October 6th, 1841, and has had eight children, of whom George S., Elizabeth, Agnes, Ella and James B. survive.
WILLIAM HALLOCK was born in New Haven, Conn., in1804; was a farmer in Walton between 1825 and 160 and has since resided in Franklin. He has been director of the First National Bank since its organization, has been justice of the peace, etc. He has been twice married -the second time to Lucia F. Stilson, in 1860; two children compose the family.
STEPHEN HINE deceased, late husband of Mrs. Matilda M. Hine, was born December 18th, 1823, and from 1858 to his death was in the mercantile business with Beriah Bowers. He married Matilda M. McCall, of Franklin. He left three sons-Lyman M., William H. and James W.
ELI B. HOPKINS was born March 17th, 1823, and between the years 1844 and 1863 was a farmer; he is now a practical painter. He was married in 1846 to Mary Taylor, who died in 1876, leaving two children-Dwight B. and Horace, now deceased. Mr. Hopkins has filled important offices of his town.
ELI P. HOWE is a barber and an engraver of silver, and also express agent at Franklin. He was formerly a cabinet maker. He was born at oak Hill, Greene county, N.Y. in 1830. He owns the telegraph line from Franklin to Otego, built in 1874; the first message over it was to Troy, ordering a bell for the Congregational Church of Franklin. He married Mary E. Judd.
ROOT F. HUBBELL began business as a blacksmith in 1862, in Norwich, N.Y. The same year he enlisted in Company C 144th N.Y. volunteers, and was in the service one year. In 1878 he married Ella L. Buell, of Franklin, and is now engaged in the blacksmith business there.
LORENZO HUYCK was born July 23d, 1826, in Franklin. Thirty years of his early life were passed in farming, and for the last twenty years he has been an eclectic physician at Croton village. He studied with Dr. Strickland, of Meredith, and married his daughter, Celestia E., in 1859. They have one son, Emory B.
WILLIAM HYMERS is of Scotch descent, and was born in Meredith, Delaware county, N. Y., September 1st, 1827. In 1851 he commenced farming, and for ten ears connected stock speculation with it. He married Margaret A. Wight, of Delhi, in1851, and has seven children.
RICHARD B. JACKSON was born at Meredith, in 1825. After 1850 he began farming for himself, and in 1860 engaged in general merchandising at Franklin village. In 1864 he was married to Anna Gallup, of Meredith, and they have two children.
MARVIN S. KELLOG was born in1818, on the same farm where he now resides. He began farming for himself in 1839, and in 1840 married Nancy D. Foote, of Franklin, who died in 1872; Mr. Kellogg married Mrs. Josephine Prime for his second wife; he has two children by his first marriage, and one, Susie, by the second.
WALTER KILBORN is an old and experienced farmer of Franklin. He was born in 1805 in Connecticut, and has lived in Delaware county since he was one year old. His ancestors were Revolutionary veterans of note. He was married to Polly D. Noremus, of Oneonta, N.Y., and she died January, 1878.
SEYMOUR KNAPP came from Columbia county, N.Y. to Franklin, in 1835; he was born in 1825. The time from 1846 to the present, except a few yeas, he has spent upon the same farm. In seven years, while in Tompkins, he cleared one hundred acres of land. He married Jane A. Green, of Franklin. He passed the last year of the war in Company G of the 2nd N. Y. heavy artillery.
ELIJAH MABIE was born January 13th, 1806, in the part of Delhi now included in Bovina. He was the oldest of ten children, and until he was twenty-seven years old devoted his attention to the care of his father's family; the greater part of his subsequent life he has passed as a blacksmith in Franklin. In 1833 he married Carolina Rose, of Kortright, who died at the age of sixty-five. He married his present wife-Susan Smith, daughter of Silas Smith, of Franklin, in 1874.
RICHARD MC MINN has lived upon the same farm since his birth, in 1829. Since 1856 he has ben sole proprietor. In January, 1856, he married Laura A. Weed, daughter of W. B. Weed of Franklin, and of their four children three are now living.
JOHN MELLEOR was born in England April 23d, 1823, and came to Delaware county from Otsego county in 1845. He married Hannah Gadsbury (now deceased) in 1849, and in 1862 married his present wife, Margaret VonPatten, of Otsego county, N.Y. He has one child, Belle H. Melleor.
ANSON S. MILLER is a native of Franklin, born July 18th, 1818. He began the carpenter's trade in1840, but is now a farmer. He has been thrice married-last to Louisa Waters in 1868. His parents came to Franklin in1803 from Connecticut, with two yoke of oxen and a horse hitched ahead.
DANIEL MILLER, son of Marvin Miller, was born in Franklin, March 12th, 1829. He is the proprietor of Loyd's mills at Franklin. He was a farmer prior to 1870. Mr. Miller and Fanny E. Cannon, of Cannonsville, were united in marriage February 1st, 1853.
HON. SAMUEL F. MILLER was born at Franklin, May 27th, 1827; pursued his academic studies at the Delaware Literary Institute graduated at Hamilton College in 1852; studied law at the Hamilton College Law School, and was admitted to the bar in 1853. He did not practice, but engaged in business as a farmer and lumberman. He was a member of the Legislature of New York in 1854; was supervisor of the town of Franklin in 1855 and 1856; was elected a representative in the Thirty-eighth Congress in 1862; was a member of the State Constitutional Convention of New York in 1867; was appointed a commissioner on the State Board of Charities in 1869; and re-appointed in 1873; was appointed collector of internal revenue May 20th, 1869 and resigned May 23d, 1873; and was elected a representative in the Forty-fourth Congress in 1874. He now lives on his farm at North Franklin.
W. M. MILLS, son of Luther Mills, was born in Massachusetts in1828. His father settled the present farm in Franklin in 1829. W. M. Mills is a justice of the peace. He was married to Eunice Emmons, of Davenport, in1854, and they have six children.
AVERY T. NORTHRUP is a printer, and in 1833 set the first case put up in Franklin. He was born at Otego, N.Y. in 1813 and is the son of Joseph and Sarah Northrup. Since 1849 he has been a farmer in Franklin; he is also a manufacturer of gloves. His grandfather, Joseph, was confined in the old "Sugar House Prison" at New York.
WILLIAM H. NORTHRUP was born in Franklin September 4th, 1822. He was a farmer from 1843 to 1858, then to 1862 was a 'jobber'. September 1st, 1862, he enlisted in Company D, 144th N. Y. Infantry, and served till1865, being in many engagements. He now is, as he says, "a mason's clerk". He has been twice married, marrying his present wife, Abigail Bennet, of Otego, N. Y. in 1861.
CHAUNCEY OGDEN was born at Croton June 1st, 1824, and since the age of thirteen has cared for himself, working by the month until he was twenty-four, when he started for himself. In his garden stands the tree from which the first apples ever grown in Franklin were picked. Mr. McCall, his maternal great grandfather, planted the seed. Mr. Ogden Married in 1848, and has three children.
IRA M. OGDEN commenced farming independently at the age of twenty in 1851-in Franklin, the place of his birth. The same year he was married to Eliza Remington, of Franklin, and has two children. Virgil R. and Morris D; also an adopted son, Arthur D.
LINUS OGDEN was born December 20th, 1819, at Franklin. At the age of nineteen, with $25 less than nothing, he began farming, and has been remarkably successful. In 1871 he retired to less arduous business. He married Jane Pomeroy, of Franklin, and has four children. Mr. Ogden enlisted in 1864 in the 8th independent battery, and was discharged in1865. He has been several years justice of the peace.
A. C. PAGE was born at Franklin in 1847. He was a carpenter and jointer from 1868 to 1875, then engaged in cabinet making, and is the undertaker of Franklin. March 10th, 1868, he was united in marriage with Ella Judd, of Franklin.
ALBERT PAYNE purchased the far where he now resides in 1856, after about fourteen years of working by the month, which he began at the age of sixteen. In that year he married Helen T. Drake, of Franklin, and they now have five children with them.
DAVID PENFIELD was born at Harpersfield February 27th, 1820. After becoming of age he worked with his father eight years on the farm at Lenox, Madison county, then returned to Harpersfield; thence he removed to Franklin. In 1841 he married Isabella H. Hotchkiss, of Harpersfield, and has five children. His father was a captain in the war of 1812.
ALPHEUS PERKINS is a descendant of Thomas Alverson, an early settler of Walton, where Mr. Perkins was born march 22nd, 1817. He cared for himself after he was nine years old, learning the trade of shoemaker. He married Phebe H. Squire, of Franklin, N.Y.
SOLOMON POMEROY was born in1819; came from Massachusetts with his father, Orange Pomeroy, in1 1837. In 1844 he married Helen Corbin, of Franklin, who died in 1862. Two sons-Charles H. and Robert E.-were born to them. In 1863 Mr. Pomeroy was married to Maria Barnes, daughter of Charles Buell, of Franklin.
CHARLES O. POTTER is a farmer of Franklin, where he was born September 8th, 1847. Since 1873 he has been established for himself; he married September 17th, 1872, Emma L. Ogden, of the same town; their children are Albert O. and Orlon C.
EDMOND D. POTTER has been a farmer since 1853 in Franklin, and upon the farm he now owns. He was born in Schoharie county, N. Y., in 1829. In 1852 he married Louisa Wilcox, of Davenport, and they have one son, Alton O. Potter.
LEWIS F. RAYMOND was born at Hamden, N.Y., May 13th, 1852, and is the youngest son of William Floyd and Eliza Bostwick Raymond. He has one brother, W. H. Raymond, of Walton, and three sisters, viz: Harriet A., wife of H. A. Kingsley, Mary J., wife of A. D. Hitchcock, of Binghamton, and Lucia E., who resides at home, in Franklin. He received his education in the common schools of the town and at the Delaware Literary Institute, taught school for several years in Schoharie and Delaware counties; was editor and publisher of the Franklin Register in 1877; studied law with Mayham & Krum, of Schoharie, and Robert T. Johnson, of Franklin, and was admitted to the bar at Saratoga, September 4th, 1879. His father died at Oneonta, November 3d, 1865, aged fifty-three years and seven months. Mr. Raymond resides with his mother in Franklin village.
BARNARD RIKARD was born in 1821, in Greene county, N.Y., and when eleven years old his parents came to Delaware county, where he worked out until the year 1848; he then commenced farming for himself, and married Margaret Burhans, of Roxbury, N.Y. They have two children living-Gertrude and Newton H.
JAMES H. ROBINSON, son of Alexander and Sarah Robinson, who came from Scotland to Kortright at an early day, was born at Kortright, December 28th, 1829. His parents afterward moved into the town of Franklin. September 18th, 1856, he was married to Sally M. Cook; they have tow children vis., Ella S., Born December 1st, 1859, and Cora D., born March 28th, 1866. Mr. Robinson is a farmer, and owns one of the finest farms in the town, has also held the office of commissioner of highways.
OLNEY J. ROWE was born in Meredith, January 24th, 1848; he is a merchant, having commenced in Croton, N.Y., in 1868, and three years of his business life were spent in Delhi. He married Jennie E. Jackson, of Croton, in 1869, and Orlando B. and Lula E. are their children.
WALTER RUTHERFORD is the son of James and Mary Rutherford, and was born in Bovina, September 9th, 1857. In June of the present year he commenced the study of law with R. T. Jackson, of Franklin, and is the clerk of this town.
HENRY R. SCOTT was born in Franklin, march 13th, 1831. He is a practical dentist in Franklin village. He was married March 12th, 1873, to Patty Cahoon, his second wife; the first was Abbie R. Lewis, who died March 1st, 1872.
JEREMIAH SCOTT resides upon a farm he purchased in 1866. He was born in davenport October 23d, 1830. He entered the military service of the Union in 1861, in Company B., 144th N.Y. volunteers, and remained till September 25th, 1864. In 1865 he married Nancy Madden, and has one child-James E. Scott.
WILLIAM W. SISSION is the son of Alanson Sisson, of Unadilla, N.Y.; he was born in that place September 10th, 1846. His life has been spent in farming, except one year-parts of 1869 and 1870. The maiden name of his wife was Phebe L. Shaw, and she was a resident of Unadilla, N.Y.; they have one child, born in 1870.
WILLIAM SMITH was born in Sidney in 1809. He married Mary White, of Oneonta, N.Y., in 1829. Mr. Smith died October 8th, 186, leaving six children; he followed shoemaking from 1828 to1857, was a farmer at Sidney Center from that time to 1862; the became a jeweler at Franklin. He held the office of justice.
SILAS G. SMITH resides on the farm where he was born in 1826. He was engaged in the sale of trees, and grafting, between 1847 and 1857, then went to Iowa for six years. He is now a farmer on the homestead, and has some fine Devons, the breeding of which he makes a speciality. He married Elizabeth McGregor in 1857.
DANIEL SMITH was born in Meredith September 28th, 1811. Between 1832 and 1860 he was engaged in farming; was then a hotel keeper for five years; then a grocer three years, and is now a farmer. He married Louisa F. Gould, of Vermont. They have two children.
JAMES S. STODDART is the son of William Stoddart, an early pioneer of Delhi, and was born February 18th, 1816. He retired from the cares of a farmer's life in 1864, and settled in the pleasant village of Croton, in a beautiful location. He married Sarah J. Goodrich, in 1839, and five children bless this union.
WILLIAM A. TAYLOR resides upon the Judge Wattles farm-the first one settled in Franklin (in 1784). The father of William A. was born 1784 in Massachusetts, and in 1808 settled the same farm where he now lives with his son.
G. N. TENNANT is a son of Avery Tennant, and was born in Connecticut in 1826. He came to Franklin with his parents at the age of ten, and at twenty-one engaged in blacksmithing, which he relinquished in 1855 for farming. In 1853 he married Helen Elliott, of Delhi, who died December 10th, 1875, leaving six children.
CHESTER H. TREADWELL is a general dealer in merchandise at Croton, where he was born in 1824. He has always been a good mechanic, and succeeded in his labors. He is the supervisor of the town, and one worthy of trust. He married Maria Bell, of Meredith, and had three daughters.
LYMAN M. WARRINER is a native of Unadilla, born December 23d, 1823. He is by trade a stone mason, but follows farming. In 1862 he married Esther A. Hurlburt, of Otsego county, N.Y. He has been school commissioner, and filled other important offices.
JOHN T. WATERS is an experienced artist of Franklin, and engaged in photography and oil painting. He was born there in 1849, and August 31st, 1870, married Sarah C. Treadwell, of Croton. Their children are Chester T. and M. Louisa.
GEORGE W. WEED married Mary C. Griffith, of Franklin, in 1861; their children are Charles E. and Arthur G. Weed. Mr. Weed was born in 1831, in the town of his present residence, and for several years before his marriage worked at the carpenter's trade and farming, but since has been a farmer exclusively.
HARTSON L. WHEAT, farmer, son of Cyrus Wheat, was born in this town March 18th, 1843. He worked for others, farming, until 1865, when he married Frances M. Knapp, and started life for himself. He taught school previous to his marriage.
SYLVESTER A. WHEAT was born in1823, on the farm where he now resides. He worked for his father until 1850; was married in November, 1849, to Rachel Loveland, of the same place, and has three children living. He passed one year of soldier's life-part of 1862 and 1863.
COLONEL SYLVESTER WHEAT was born in Connecticut in1806, and came to Franklin in 1811 with his parents. He passed through the pioneer life of that early day, teaching winters and farming summers, until he was established upon a farm for himself. He has been thrice married: to Amy Drake, his present worthy lady, in 1855.
MRS. ELIZABETH WILCOX was born in Franklin, August 6th 1826; she is a daughter of Erastus and Sophronia Edgerton, who settled in Franklin at a very early day. They had four children, Erastus S., of St. Paul, Minn., Thos. H. of Sullivan county, N.Y., Mrs. D. A. Monfort and Mrs. Elizabeth Wilcox.
IRA WILCOX, M.D., resides at Franklin, were he was born in 1846, June 15th. He was educated at Delaware Literary Institute, and at once began the study of medicine with his father, S. C. Wilcox. He entered the Albany Medical College, and then the office of Prof. Hamilton, of Bellevue Hospital, New York, receiving lectures at the college, and graduating in March, 1868. He returned home and at once commenced a successful practice. He is a member of the Delaware County Medical Society, of which he has been president two years; is secretary and a member of the board of trustees of the Delaware Literary Institute; master of Franklin Lodge F. A. M. and member of a number of other societies.
WILLIAM WOLCOTT came with his father to Franklin in 1818 from Massachusetts, where he was born in 1805. In 1850 he settled on the farm where he now resides. He has been twice married, February 24th, 1843, to Mary C. Foote, who died in 1855; and to Mary Gay of Meredith, now living. His children are Alvin J. and Mary F. Wolcott.