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The Record of some noted one
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Our ancestors, and their life work
Are forgotten in a day.
Damkl T. Wandell, Pioneer
History of the
Watervliet, N. Y.
163O tO IQIO
Compiled by James T. Myers
Watervliet, N. Y.
Press of Henry Stowell & Son
Troy, N. Y.
Its First Inception, Early Advancement and Future
A yearning is felt within me to write (from history, family
records and memory) the history of Gibbonsville (city of Water-
vliet), and as it were, a word picture of scenes, business interests,
military and social functions, and other items of interest (at least
to many readers) from its settlement to its present position among
the cities of the State, that may possibly recall to mind to some
that peruse the same, or convey to those not familiar with its early
history, the different phases of its growth, from infancy to man-
hood, believing to those yet living and conversant with facts
as stated, calling to mind those scenes and familiar faces of long
ago, will create a heartfelt pleasure as they recognize the same,
remember their connection therewith, visit (in memory) their
old time acquaintances, and revel once more (in imagination) in
the military, social and firemanic features as they existed in those
jolly good days, and thereby generate anew a feeling of pride
that they themselves were part and parcel of its foundation.
Killean Van Renssellear first owned the land that is designated
on old maps as Port Schuyler, Washington, Gibbonsville, West
Troy, and the present city of Watervliet. Phillip Petersie Schuy-
ler built the Schuyler mansion now standing south of the city.
There he entertained his guests, among them the hostile Indians,
who often camped on the farm north of the residence, and
through kind treatment became his friends. The east half of the
original building was burned in 1771. The west wall (imported
Holland brick two feet thick) was left intact. The new eastern
half was rebuilt in 1772. The original door saved from the fire
was replaced in the brick wall, opening into the western half.
The front facing the east has in place the original two-part door,
the old knocker, and original shutters also saved. The old river
road ran to the eastward of the house. Early stages passed the
house. Later the turnpike was built to the westward of the man-
sion in 1828, after the canal was finished. Present Albany road,
Souvenirs, reminders of the early connection of the Schuyler
family with the early settlement of Beverwyck (city of Albany
and Albany county), adorn the walls. Conspicuous is the portrait
of Peter Schuyler, first mayor of Albany, original painting by
artist to Queen Anne, executed at the time Schuyler visited
England, accompanied by a delegation of Indians. Courtesy de-
mands acknowledgment to Mrs. Richard Schuyler for information.
Derrick Van De Heyden operated a ferry, landing on the west
side of the Hudson on the Bleeker farm (near Sixteenth street).
Troops crossed this ferry in 1777 on their way to take part in the
battle of Bemis Heights and Stillwater.
Phillip, Peter, Jeremiah Schuyler and Peter Cluett were set-
tlers at this date.
Johanneas Wandell and Jacobus Wandell (brothers) from
Amsterdam, Holland, to Newburgh, in 1758, purchased 300 acres
of land known as the Commons in Newburgh, and also 300 acres
in Fishkill. Ship builders, rivermen, freighting to New York,
and identified with army movements between West Point and New
Daniel T. Wandell, one of four sons of Johanneas, born in
Newburgh in 1770, the only one to settle in Troy in 1789, and
at that time owner and captain of sloop Elinor, plying between
New York, Newburgh and Troy. Became owner and operated a
ferry from near Division street, Troy, to the west side, landing
on the Bleeker farm, Buffalo street (Fifteenth and Broadway) in
1804. One of the 200 to join Tammany Society in 1808 organized
in Troy, branch of New York. Trustee of the First Ward of
Troy in 1810. Sold the Rock House ferry in 1812 to Mathias
Van De Heyden. Moved to Gibbonsville in 1816. Superintendent
of both Van De Heyden ferries (upper and lower) from 1822 to
1834. Placed the first experimental steam ferry boat on upper
ferry in 1832 (failure). President of village of Gibbonsville in
1829. Justice of the peace in 1837. Owner of lower ferry,
Broadway and Fourteenth street, from 1835 to 1852. Placed the
steam ferry boat Transit on the ferry in 1846, the horse boats
being laid up. The brother of the writer was killed on one of them
in 1847. Moved to Greenpoint, L. I., in 1852. Died in 1869,
99 years old. His wife, Elinor Wandell (nee Mack), born 1774,
died in 1847, 73 years old.
S. S. Wandell, son of D. T. W., born in Troy in 1802. Frances
Harriet Wandell (daughter of D. T. W.) born in Troy 1810.
Elinor Wandell (daughter of D. T. W.) born in Troy 1812. S. S.
Wandell married a Miss Esther Eaton of Troy. When he became
of age became prominent in the affairs of the village of Gibbons-
ville. Captain of the first fire engine, old Niagara No. 1, in 1829.
Agent of the Gibbonsville estate, Alexander estate. Charter mem-
ber of W. M. E. church in 1831. Weighmaster at this port, re-
taining his prestige until his death, which occurred in 1885. His
son, Martin Eaton Wandell, born in Gibbonsville in 1835, died in
Tampa, Fla., 1898. Master's mate in the navy; also on a whaling
voyage with the writer in 1855.
Jonathan Myers, from Holland, settled in Fishkill in 1769.
Miller; built and operated same for some years. Identified with
its early history up to the time of his death, occurring in 1836.
Two sons, Abram Myers, born in Fishkill in 1802 ; Alfred, born
in 1808. Mary Myers, daughter, born in 1805.
Abram Myers, son, came to Gibbonsville in 1818. Opened a
clothing store on River street, became prominent as a merchant.
Held the position of trustee of the village, collector, and other
offices. Charter member of the first lodge of I. O. O. F. No. 20
and N. G., organized in the Learned building in 1836. Married
Frances Harriet Wandell (daughter of D. T. W.). His death
occurred in 1866. Wife died in 1867.
James T. Myers (son of Abram and Frances) born in Gibbons-
ville in 1836, educated in village schools, Smith's Seminary, Troy,
Jonesville Academy and Fort Edward Institute. Entered the
clothing business with his father. Commercial traveler for promi-
nent firms for years, bookkeeper, justice of the peace from 1900
to 1909. Elected in 1909 for three years. Member and fore-
man of H. and L. Co. Hercules, member of Rip Van Winkle Co.
No. 1, also captain James Roy Steamer Company No. 1 and chief
engineer of the fire department in 1872. Married Marietta,
daughter of Joseph Wemett, of Troy, N. Y.
Isaac Chapman Myers (son of Abram and Frances) born in
West Troy in 1838. Educated in same schools. Member of Rip
Van Winkle Engine No. 1 and treasurer some years. Went west.
Secretary of the proprietor of the St. Louis Rural World. Re-
signed position. Went to California. Returned to Ogden, Utah.
Died in 1898.
Oliver Duncan Myers (son of J. T. M.) educated in the village
schools and business college, went to Buffalo. Connected with the
grain elevators. For seven years manager as head weigher, and
for the Great Northern when .first put in operation. Later with
the Edison Company, New York city. Married Miss Eufaula
Fuller, daughter of Eugene A. Fuller. Many years foreman for
K. V. Wilson & Co., Troy. Enlisted in 1861 in N. Y. Vols., 3d
Army Corps. Died in 1887.
Alfred Myers (son of Jonathan) to Gibbonsville in 1822. Mem-
ber of No. 1 Engine Co. Captain of same. Connected with the
ferries as collector. Died in 1854. Married a Miss Levina Taft
Emma Putman (nee Myers), daughter of Alfred and Levina
Myers. Married a George Putman of Green Island, who died in
California. Their daughter, Jennie Putman, married Robert
Church of Troy, N. Y., and who has been connected for years with
the N. Y. C. & H. R. R. Co. at Grand Central station, N. Y.
Henry Fitchett, born in Fishkill 1806, came to Gibbonsville in
1826. Married Mary Myers, sister of Abram Myers. Carpenter
John Fitchett (son) born 1835. Educated in village. Book-
keeper and accountant. Clerk of the village in 1854-5. Moved to
Omaha. Died there. Buried in Rural.
Learned Haight, member of the Haight family of Troy. To
Gibbonsville in 1825. Leather dealer. Married Elinor Wandell
(daughter of D. T. W.). Moved to Troy. In business on Ferry
street. Later of the firm of I. & L. Haight, dealers in leather and
findings. Also tannery at head of Ferry street. Later in New
York. Contract for the government manufacturing mail bags.
Both branches are connected with the early settlement of New-
burgh, Fishkill, village of Troy, Washington, Gibbonsville, West
Troy, and therefore identified with the erection of the cities of
Troy and Watervliet.
Jonas Yearsley and George Yearsley settled in the old town
of Watervliet in the seventeenth century. Jonas built the first
hotel at what is known at this date as Latham's Corners in 1845,
Died in 1860.
George J. Yearsley (son of George). To West Troy in 1830.
Served an apprenticeship with William Tucker in 1832. Estab-
lished the business later, continuing same until his death in 1902.
William T. E. Yearsley (son), born and educated in the village,
continuing the same line of business (harness), identifying him-
self with the commercial interests of his birthplace, sacrificing per-
sonal interests and home associations in support of the country's
honor, and as a veteran, his services (like many others) are appre-
ciated by all loyal citizens, and his membership in General John
E. Wool Post, G. A. R., is the memorial tablet whereon is in-
scribed the deeds of valor credited to its members.
Advertisements often appeared in newspapers in past years that
were very appropriate to the season.
John Glass Las received a large consignment of lemon colored
kerosene that he offers at $1.25 per gallon.
J. D. Lobdell, January 15, 1845, offers the choice from a con-
signment of straw hats at the low figure of seventy-five cents each.
C. Hovey, February 10, 1832. Patrons will please call on or
before March first and settle. It will enable me to keep up the
appearance of a gentleman.
Mathias D. Y. Van De Heyden, in 1786, owned and operated
the ferry foot of Canal street (now Sixteenth) ; the first stage over
the River road to Troy and Lansingburgh, crossed this ferry, and
in 1790, Malon Taylor owned and commenced operating the second
ferry, at the foot of Ferry street (now Fourteenth). The land from
a creek called Croom Kill (Crooked creek) south of the Schuyler
homestead, to a stream north, called, Stein Hoeck Kill (Stone
Point creek) known as Dry river was owned by Philip S. Schuyler.
In 1793 part of this plat commencing at what is now Fifth
street extending north to what is now known as Eighth street was
surveyed by Mr. Schuyler and laid out into lots and called
Washington. The farm above this extending to Stein Hoeck
(Stone Point) Rock House, was owned by Bastian De Winter.
John S. Schuyler purchased it in 1786.
In 1795 two stages passed over this route, owned by Annanias
In 1796 twenty stages were running over the different post
routes, Stein Hoeck Kill (Dry river), draining the northwestern
part of what was once all Albany county, running through the
town of Colonie, entering the city just above Twelfth avenue, run-
ning zigzag through it, south, passing through the United States
grounds, entering the Hudson. In early days this stream fur-
nished fishing grounds for. years. The waters clear, clean and
gave no trouble to those living on its banks even at times of freshets
spring and fall, to-day it is a bone of contention, cause why ?
John Bleeker owned the farm, north from Buffalo street (Broad-
way and Fifteenth street), to the intersection of the Oothout farm
near Twenty-fifth street. This section later became the village
of West Troy.
Frederick Y. Waterman, whose ancestors served in the War of
the Revolution was born in 1790 at Hudson, 1ST. Y. Served in
the War of 1812. Became sheriff of Columbia county. Changed
his residence, and later became postmaster at Cohoes, Albany
county, 1ST. Y. A very prominent and active citizen in his day.
His demise, occurring in 1834, deprived the nation of a patriot,
the State of an honored official, leaving a void in his immediate
family that none could fill.
Samuel H. Waterman and Smith A. Waterman, twins (sons of
F. Y.), born in 1823 in Columbia county. Smith A. Waterman,
after settling in West Troy, became interested in politics, was
superintendent of first section of Erie canal, county clerk of the
county of Albany, captain of the Light Guards, one of the most
prominent of the organizations of the old village; whole-souled,
generous and respected citizen. Born in 1823. Died in 1865.
Samuel H. Waterman, brother, born in 1823. In early life
clerk for Andrew Meneely. Later in the grocery and dry goods
business firm of Crowner & Waterman, in the Wiswall building,
later first firm to locate in the building known as Union Place Hall
in 1852. Later in the lumber business, firm Saxe & Waterman.
Mr. Saxe withdrew, Mr. Waterman continuing until his death on
November 10, 1902.
S. A. Waterman (son), born in 1858. At 17 years old clerk
for John I. Thompson, six years. In 1881, with his father, clerk
in the lumber trade, succeeding to the business on his death. The
yards are situated on Second avenue, Lots 1801 to 1817 inclusive.
It is the only firm in existence in the city that represents the
lumber trade that flourished in days gone by, established by such
firms as Freeman & Co., Cameron, Conant & Co., Saxe & Co.,
Silliman & Haswell, Alfred Mosher and others long since de-
parted. Mr. Waterman is connected with the Watson family of
Saratoga county, the Collins and Viles family of Albany county,
and on his mother's side with the Fay family whose father was a
congressman from this district years gone by.
' John L. Caulkins. To West Troy in 1825. Contractor. One
of the substantial citizens of the times. His death caused a va-
cancy in business circles in which he had been largely identified
many years. George L. Caulkins (son), born in 1859. His
maternal grandfather, Edward Learned, was first president of the
village. Lumber inspector at one time. Later became an under-
taker and embalmer. The family were very prominent in social
and church matters in days gone by.
Daniel Day. One of the old grocery merchants, and well known.
Michael J. Day (son), educated here and La Salle Institute.
Clerk and cashier for William H. Frear 12 years. Engaged in
the coal business in 1882 under the firm name Crummy & Day.
Last president of the village, and first mayor of city of Water-
vliet. The firm's new office is located corner of Broadway and
Stephen V. Sturtevant (son of G. A. Sturtevant, one of the
pioneer settlers of Gibbonsville), born in 1844. In the lumber
business, firm of Andrews & Sturtevant, fire commissioner 15
years, member of Oswald Hose Company, one of the few yoimg
men whose friendship was eagerly sought, and highly esteemed.
His death was sincerely regretted by many.
Elisha Mors. Operator in timber and real estate. To West
Troy in 1863. One of the wealthiest men of the village. Died in
1875. Joshua Mors (son), of the firm of E. Mors & Son, office
106 Sixteenth street. On his father's death succeeded to the busi-
ness. Iron, stone and steel being in demand for building pur-
poses, the sale of timber decreasing, he closed the concern and
moved to New York where he died in 1908.
John C. Schuyler, born in the old homestead in 1801. Died in
1882. Officially related to the South Dutch Church. Represented
the town as supervisor from 1837 to 1853. Assembly in 1836.
Stephen Schuyler, born in 1851. The family history is well
known by those well up in history of the county.
Andrew Meneely. From north of Ireland to the early settle-
ment called Washington, in 1795, and identified as one of the
first settlers of the locality.
Andrew Meneely, Sr., known as establishing the first bell
foundry in Gibbonsville in 1826, was born in Washington in
1801. Died 1851. Learned the trade of mathematical instrument
making with Julius Hanks, entering his employ when 17 years
old in 1808.
George Meneely (son). Formerly connected with the Meneely
bell foundry. Withdrew in 1876. Established the business of
the mamifacture of car journal bearings. Foundry located in 1874
on the site of the old Chollar, Sage & Dunham foundry.
The family have been connected with the business interests of
this locality over a century. Identified with both North and South
Reformed churches. Andrew, senior, one of the original members
of the first church in 1814.
The firm this date is George R. Meneely & Son, he being ad-
mitted in 1888, succeeding C. H. Getman, Jr., partner of G. M.
Margaret Meneely, aunt of George, married Capt. James Hitch-
cock. Nancy Meneely married Capt. Isaac Hitchcock. Eleanor
Meneely also married.
Andrew Meneely was president of the village in 1839 and again
in 1843. George R. Meneely president of same in 1860. A life-
long interest in the business, social, religious and political history
of this old town marks them as one of the most progressive families
that settled within its borders. Scions of noble stock.
John Robinson, from England to Troy, "N. Y., in 1800; occupa-
tion, miller; built mill back of Troy. The family consisted of
wife and four sons, William T. Robinson, located in Ohio, farmer ;
died in 1840; Richard Robinson went to Chicago, died in 1876;
Joseph Robinson, died in 1878. After their father's death, occur-
ing in 1822, Kobert Robinson settled in Gibbonsville in 1823,
where he immediately identified himself with the business interest
of the village, became captain and owner of several river crafts
freighting lumber to New York, and was one of the pioneers in
the ownership and the employment of steam tug boats, that de-
veloped later as the Robinson Towing Company, used in towing
their large fleet of barges and also the canal boats from the west
with cargoes of lumber staves, oil and other freight consigned to
ports further down the river.
Mr. Robinson following his line of business from its infancy,
enabled him to master all the details connected therewith, qualify-
ing him as an expert pilot, to weather many of the financial storms
that wrecked other crafts of like tonnage, by trimming his sails
(fore, aft and mizzen). Prudence, energy and integrity, his ever
watchful eye soon raised the beacon light that enabled him to steer
clear of the shoals of adversity, and anchor in a harbor of safety.
He had the respect and confidence of his competitors, and at the
time of his death, which occurred in 1874 he left a record for
probity none could question.
John Robinson (son), born in West Troy, educated in the
schools of the village, popular with his associates, a member of
Oswald Hose Company for years, and at one time had charge of
the family's interest in the Robinson estate, but his health fail-
ing, he retired from active duty, and his death which occurred in
1895 released him from the cares and disappointments of this life,
and as we believe, to find joy, happiness and peace beyond.
Clinton Robinson (son), born and received his education in
West Troy, entered the services of the Robinson Company and re-
mained engaged therein until the family closed out the business;
of a quiet disposition whose friendship once acquired is lasting.
Mary J. Robinson (daughter), to know her, is to respect, honor
and love her for the even disposition and many loveable traits of
character that are so plainly and indelibly marked, as she journeys
on through this selfish world, that the casual observer immediately
realizes their presence, and at once recognizes the fact that there
are conditions of mind, that (under any and all circumstances)
make life worth living. A life-long member of the North Re-
formed Dutch Church and interested in all movements that tend
toward the uplifting of humanity, and a cordial greeting awaits
her at all times.
James Gibbons purchased the farm commencing at North street
(Eighth), of the Schuylers in 1805, extending to Buffalo street
(Fifteenth), and the great black rock (Rock house) and named it
Julius Hanks erected the first bell foundry in 1808, on Water
street (Broadway), between Fourteenth and Fifteenth streets,
1810 ; Parkers and Beals, stages to Lansingburg.
In 1813 the United States government purchased from James
Gibbons, twelve acres of land in Gibbonsville, commencing at a
stream now known as Dry river; in 1828, the government made
the second purchase of thirty acres; later another purchase from
S. S. Wandell and others, extending the grounds on Broadway to
its present limit.
Isaac Chapman who came to Gibbonsville in 1813, was the first
master mechanic of the post; became prominent in the business
affairs of the village. President of same in 1835 ; chief of
fire department in 1830; built the brick building, No. 1415 as his
residence, and 1417 (Hilton's store in 1823), where the Indepen-
dent Order of Odd Fellows' then located in the Learned building
as No. 20, moved to it in 1840, with number changed to 38. Died
in 1856 holding the office of assessor.
The Reformed Protestant Dutch Church, of Washington and
Gibbonsville, organized in a schoolhouse on the west side of Second
avenue March 19, 1814, on rear of lot now owned by the Forsyth
family. Chairman, Peter S. Schuyler ; clerk, Volkert Oothout ;
Robert Dunlop and L. Blackmail. Philip Bronk, pastor. In
1815 commenced building church on then River street above north-
west side (now Broadway and Eighth street). Dedicated in 1816,
the first pastor continuing until 1834. Phillip S. Schuyler, An-
drew Meneely, elders; Samuel Phillips and Stephen Conger, dea-
cons; Dr. N. L. Hungerford, S. C. Dermott. Humphrey Oothout,
contractor, who built the old White Church. It stood on River
street, on the west side of Broadway, now No. 959 Broadway,
residence now occupied by G. L. Schuyler ; on lot north stood the
parsonage ; on the lot south of the site of the church stood the
Sunday school, and in the rear of the present building stands part
of the building used as the original iufant school in 1818. Hav-
ing been repaired it is in first class condition, a relic of the past.
The first post-office located in 1816, corner of River and Ferry
streets (Broadway and Fourteenth) ; Abijah Wheeler, post master;
it was named the Watervliet post-office.
At this time Jonathan Hart's law office was in Washington,
River street, south of the present lower locks.
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The building of the Erie canal commenced July 4, 1817.
William Andrews, Sr., school teacher in town of Watervliet,
in 1822, came to Gibbonsville in 1824. Kept grocery corner Water
and Ferry streets (Broadway and Fourteenth), manufacturer in
1847 of soda, root and lemon beer, prominent in the aifairs of
the village in its infancy.
William Andrews, Jr., (son), born in 1830; from boyhood to
date he has been identified with the history, growth and "business
interests of his home city; an old time fireman, identified with
old Eip Van Winkle; served in ofiice as captain; identified with
the lumber trade, also in financial and banking institutions, in-
terested in a very large degree in real estate, having erected on
land once occupied by lumber, a settlement of ninety cottages,
known as Andersonville, where a tenant can lease a home at a
reasonable rent with no other tenant to interfere with their
John Andrews (brother), went to California with John Learned
and others from the old Second ward in 1849, and never returned.
Joseph Andrews, learned the trade of mathematical instruments
serving an apprenticeship with Andrew Meneely; member of Eip
Van Winkle; observing the fire at the Quiggin Mill, at Troy, in
1854 from the upper floor of the foundry and by giving the alarm
he enabled the members of old Kip to drag the engine to the ferry
and landed it on the dock ; laid hose at the same time that Wash-
ington Volunteers did. His death occurred in 1879.
Eobert Andrews (brother), formerly in the grocery business,
later employed by the State at the weigh-lock ; his death occurred
on October 24, 1908.
James Andrews, bookkeeper at Watervliet National Bank ; many
years in their employ; son-in-law to Francis E. Varney, who
came to West Troy in 1851, millwright, a member of the Dutch
Eeformed Church, First avenue, and a zealous worker in the
interest of religion and ready at all times to assist in any good
work that tends to advance the interest of the city.
Burden's cigar boat Helen ; built in 1833.
Steamboat Chancellor Livingston in commission.
Jonathan Clute's hat factory (brick), east side of Eiver road,
south of Arseual Green; part standing to-day.
A. S. Blackmans; sattinett factory, Eiver road (Broadway ).
foot of Fifth street.
S. C. Dermott; flour mill, Eiver road; Mill street (Fourth
street) : b^ilt iv 179*.
On the south-west corner of what is now Broadway and Second
street stood an old house known as the Lee house on the corner
opposite another building known as the Stickney house ; evidently
at some period occupied by families of that name.
Delevan House, the three-story building on the east side of
Broadway, between Thirteenth and Fourteenth streets, built by
Jonathan Oothout; first proprietors, Delevan and Swan; the
principal hotel in its day in this section. It became a business
block, stores, factories and shops; George Learned, grocery; Wit-
beck & Lawrence, wagon shop, the nucleus of Jones Car Works.
Later it became a tenement house, one family residing there
named their children George Washington Nutting, Thomas Jef-
ferson Nutting, William Henry Harrison Nutting and Andrew
Jackson Nutting. One of them became a large clothing dealer in
Brooklyn ; another a noted hotel proprietor. The building was
built in 1820 and is a dilapidated tenement house to-day, ninety
years old, the oldest in the city.
William Robinson, farmer, whose ancestors came from Holland
to America, about 1800. Mr. Robinson came to West Troy about
Perry Robinson (son), during his life time he and his brother
Edward Robinson were conspicuously identified with the canal
business in its palmy days'; proprietors of groceries and stables
many years ; known by all boatmen ; recognized as generous, liberal
and reliable merchants, and ready at all times to take a hand in
anything that would assist the unfortunate, or any sport that
would drive dull care away. Perry Robinson was the president
of the village in 1870 and 1871; Edward Robinson died Septem-
ber 2, 1898.
William Robinson (son of Edward), was educated in the schools
of the village, his record as to integrity, honesty, perseverance and
strict attention to matters of business is well known by the dif-
ferent firms that have employed him, in Troy, and other places,
while to-day he occupies a responsible position with the firm of
Edwin G. Glass, druggist ; also a member of Protection Hose Com-
pany and popular with his associates.
Philip Schuyler, Isais Warren, Richard P. Hart, Nathan War-
ren and others purchased from John Bleeker and wife the farm
extending from Buffalo street (Broadway and Fifteenth) to the
intersection of the Oothont farm near Twenty-fifth street and
named it West Troy.
Erie canal was completed October 8, 1823 from Rochester. The
canal boat, Trojan Trader, left Gibbonsville docks bound for
Rochester with a cargo of merchandise for western merchants
sent over the two ferries on wagons by Troy merchants. The
river lock being finished that afternoon the packet Superior was
locked through into the river and was the first boat to cross the
Hudson to Troy. The villagers celebrated the event in a manner
worthy of the occasion, and at this date, noting the long list of
receptions to noted officials, military, civic and firemanic organ-
izations, not forgetting the grand one tendered to America's
friend, La Fayette, that have followed, Troy with its last grand
effort iu the Hudson-Fulton celebration (a vivid panorama of
earlier scenes) the climax was reached, and then and there set the
pace for other cities to follow.
Horace L. Dann, cooper, came to Troy in 1821. Resided corner
Broadway and Fifth avenue. Came to Gibbonsville in 1823. Pur-
chased the brick house built by and just finished of Jonathan
Caulkins with lots adjoining. Erected a large cooperage factory,
and some years later erected mills near Watertown for the manu-
facture of barrel staves, and established an extensive business
throughout this section. Nearly all the men and boys that fol-
lowed the business in later years learned the trade in Mr. Dann's
factory. Always interested in the advancement of the business of
the village, his death was a loss to the community, and by it the
largest plant of its kind in this section was eliminated. Died in
1879. Three sons and one daughter survived him.
Marcus P. Dann established a large cooperage in Minneapolis.
Retired from business. Died in 1890.
Horace P. Dann, once a prosperous merchant, large dealer in
coal, a lover of good horses, and at times was the owner of some
fast trotters, and always in touch with his friends. Died in 1908.
Whitfield Dann, formerly a Methodist minister, living.
Josephine Dann, living.
Elizabeth (Baker) Dann, oldest daughter of (H. L. D.). Citi-
zen of Oakland, Cal., 80 years old. Connected with the noted
Baker family. Prominent society leader in early days.
Charles L. Dann. His long continued service (25 years) with
the D. & H. Co. gave him a wide circle of acquaintances while
his affability and courteous manner gained for him the apprecia-
tion of the traveling public.
The Dann homestead is the oldest house in Watervliet that was
built in old West Troy (that is, north of Fifteenth street), and is
the only one north of the Schuyler mansion that has been owned
and occupied by one and the same family eighty-six years.
Residents: Elijah Ranney, Edward Learned, George L. Learned,
Nathan Robinson, G. T. Lansing, Augustus Velie, Ebenezer Wis-
wall, Isaac Frink, David Wheeler, Enoch Burrows, Gilbert V.
Bedell, Robert Dunlop, Nelson I. Hungerford, Zar Stone, Jacob
Gingrich, Samuel Patch, school teacher, jumped the Genesee falls,
Rochester, November 13, 1829.
Dr. Velie's office first located on site of Scarborough's store.
G. S. Brockway opened an office for the sale of lottery tickets in
the Consolidated Lottery Co.
to purchase tickets either on this side of the river of Caleb Wood-
ard at Side Cut or in Troy of the Calders, Adencourt and others.
S. C. Salsbury and A. Salsbury, steam rope walk, on Cohoes
road opposite new weighlock west side of canal, burned April 6,
James Morrison, resident of the village, later proprietor of road
house, Fifth avenue, Troy, noted resort for latter day sports, mar-
ried Almira Salsbury.
Jones' Band (arsenal). James Hitchcock, the noted fifer,
Charles Doring, John Forrester and others of this band became
members of Doring's band when organized.
J. G. Landon & W. G. Groesbeck, iron foundry, below Ferry
Village of Gibbonsville incorporated in 1824. First president,
Robert Dunlop, brewer, in Albany, moved to Gibbonsville. The
noted Dunlop brewery, situated at what is now the northwest cor-
ner of Broadway and Fifth street. Archibald A. (son) connected
with the firm and sole proprietor later. James Roy, in its early
days foreman of same. They had their own barges to freight their
ale on the river to ports to New York, loading the same at the dock
through a tunnel from brewery under ground to the river. Both
were identified with many improvements of the village, influential
and thorough business men of the times. In after years a Mr.
Bowler was proprietor, who also established a reputation as a
brewer and eventually moved to Amsterdam and established the
present Bowler Brewing Co. A. A. Dunlop was president of the
village in 1846. The old building torn down in 1908.
Myron R. Peak, hardware merchant, president of the village
in 1838 and 1842, had the confidence of the public. Quiet, unas-
suming, a gentleman of the old school.
Martin Witbeck succeeded Mr. Peak. A heavy built man, very
stern and reticent, less sociable than would be expected of a busi-
ness man. President of the village in 1837 and 1840
Edward Finch, son of Henry Finch, a lumber dealer, controlled
the business a few years and moved to California, became success-
ful and died in Oakland in 1906.
John Liney. Identified with early religious movements in the
village, established a large pharmacy in the old Fourth Ward.
Built the brick residence now occupied by Dr. F. P. Van Den-
burgh. One daughter survives him (Caroline). He also was one
of the passengers on the ill-fated steamboat Swallow in 1845.
Widow Dayton, proprietor of Dayton hotel (Albany road) and
Mrs. G. Coffin of West Troy were also passengers. Mrs. Coffin
was one of the victims.
John Ring, father-in-law of Chas. Fort, contractor, resided at
the south end of Park near Second street and Second avenue.
Captain S. F. Washburn, an old time river man, later heavy
merchant in Albany in grain, etc.
Volume of business as shown by canal department for 1824,
from opening of canal May 1st, to its closing, December 10, 1824:
Boats to Albany from the West, 2,723 ; boats going West, 2,672.
Cargoes consisted of the following merchandise: 112 tons fur.,
121,756 bbls. beef and pork, 25,895 bbls. pot and pearl ash,
128,674 bu. wheat, 30,976 bu. coarse grain, 512 tons gypsum,
8,295,610 feet timber and boards, 6,118 boxes window glass, 1,127
bbls. linseed oil, 1,056 barrel staves, 8,120 bbls. salt, 4,092 cords
wood. Tolls less than three cents per mile. Receipts amounted to
Evening Star Lodge, F. & A. M., No. 75. Organized in 1826 at
Gibbonsville in the Chapman building, built by Isaac Chapman,
master mechanic at Watervliet arsenal, in 1813. (Now Hilton's
store.) Built in 1824. Charter members: Memory calls to mind
circumstances that warrant me to state the following names : Levi
Lincoln, E. C. Litchfield, Col. Hamilton, Isaac Hitchcock, N. L.
Hungerford, J. H. Mies, Aaron Clinton, John S. Perry. Some
members: S. S. Wandell, D. W. Talcott, Jas. Roy, Wm. Andrews.
In the 50's the lodge adjourned sine die. Surrendered charter. In
1860 the lodge reorganized with 24 charter members, the fol-
lowing six names being original members of the old lodge : D. W.
Tallcott, elected master of the lodge; James Roy, S. S. Wandell,
William Andrews, E. S. Washburn, A. McAllister. The original
charter believed to have been lost was found later at Grand Lodge
headquarters. The other twenty charter members did not belong
to the old lodge. There was a reason. In 1840 moved to the cor-
ner of Broadway and Sixteenth street. They adjourned in the
50's sine die. In 1860 reopened, D. W. Tallcott, first master. In
1865 the lodge suffered a heavy loss by fire, forcing them to seek
new quarters on the opposite side of Broadway. Again in 1870
another conflagration required a new location and they returned
to the east side again. Years have elapsed since the gavel
sounded calling to order their first meeting, and not one living,
who prior to 1840 greeted each other as brothers as they often met
in social intercourse in the basement of the old corner building
where Proprietor Burrell, with smiling countenance, served his
guests with the delicacies of the season. To-day many new pil-
grims from the East join hands in the rites and ceremonies of the
order, and are conversant with the lodges' past history from its
records, have reason to congratulate each other in the purchase
(long delayed) of a home of its own, a Masonic temple worthy
of the name. Officers of 1910: Alexander H. Cockburn, master;
David A. Tomlinson, senior warden; George B. Preston, junior
warden; John G. Clute, senior deacon; Frank P. Lotz, junior
deacon ; John Docherty, treasurer ; Daniel Jones, secretary ; Thos.
A. Mabin, chaplain; John McBain, Jr., senior M. of C. ; R. W.
Knower, junior M. of C. ; Wm. H. Roblin, steward; Thos. G.
Grady, steward ; R. Trimble, marshal ; Morris S. Mackenzie, his-
torian, died March 7, 1910 ; Will H. Rogers, organist ; Samuel
Andrews, Thomas A. Mabin, Robert Trimble, trustees.
First weighlock, south side of what is now Twenty-third street
The West Troy Company built a canal running south from
Union street to Genesee street, thence west to the canal. Built
basin and dry dock (abandoned later) at Seventeenth street.
Residents: John Hills, James Hitchcock, William Andrews,
Sr., Jonathan Dyer, Jeremiah Dyer, Stephen Sweet, Zar Stone,
died December 6, 1893; John Oswald, E. R. Phelps, L. V. K.
Van Demark, died March 26, 1841.
Isaac Hitchcock. One of the earliest settlers of Gibbonsville
and one of the most prominent. Appointed postmaster on July
23, 1845, also April 28, 1847, and again in 1833, and held posi-
tion until 1858.
Saloon of Augustus Canton, near Ferry street.
Watervliet House, southwest corner Buffalo and Broadway.
Location of Watervliet Bank in 1836. Rock House opposite, once
The Hollister House. The lot southwest corner of Genesee and
Erie streets (Nineteenth and Second avenue). Once owned by
George Tibbitts. Sold by him in 1825, with two other lots, to
Nathan S. Hollister, who built and opened it as a hotel in 1830.
The old post route commenced at the Van De Heyden ferry
(Sixteenth street) through to Schenectady. It is now occupied as
a grocery and residence by Mrs. Meskell and in fair condition at
this date, 1910, 80 years old.
The Port Schuyler Company, incorporated. William Earl,
Jabez Burrows, Abijah Wheeler, David Wheeler, Enoch Burrows,
Gilbert C. Bedell, Jonathan Hart, incorporators. They purchased
from Peter S. Schuyler the land north from the Schuyler home-
stead to South street (Fifth street).
James Quackenbush. Resident west side of canal. Building
situated on site of present chair factory. Became part of the old
chair factory and burned in the 40's. Rebuilt and occupied by
Taylor & Seymour. Burned in 1852. Repaired and closed later.
Mr. Quackenbush's daughter (Cassie) became the wife of
George Sinsabaugh, proprietor of the noted ice cream and con-
fectionery parlors in Troy, known throughout the State. Mrs.
Sinsabaugh, now living, 82 years old, remembers with pride her
early and long connection with the business and social interests
of the city, and although greeted with affection by new formed
acquaintances in later days, remembrances of former associates
still linger in memory.
Thomas Keiley. Ropemaker. First situation with S. C. Sals-
bury. Family consisted of two sons, Patrick and John, and four
daughters. His daughter became the wife of Patrick Lane. Mary
married Thomas McCarty. Moved to Buffalo early in the 40's.
Annie became the wife of John Savin. Alice, wife of Ed.
John Reiley and McLean (Joseph), became partners and con-
ducted an extensive coal business, was at all time ready to give
his time to the advancement of any project that would accrue to
the business interest of the city. Died in 1906. Their co-partner-
ship continued fifty-four years, from youth to old age, they lived
a life of friendship, and strange as it may seem, the passing to
that world beyond within twenty-four hours of each other is in
accord with their early life, having entered the spiritual one, with
hands still clasped in friendship.
Patrick Reiley held the position of postmaster of the village
in 1887 and again in 1894.
Thomas Reiley was the first treasurer of the first Catholic
church, and held the position until his death, occuring in 1860.
His son, Patrick succeeded him, and held it until he died in 1900.
The Arsenal engine, intended for exclusive use by the post,
and manned by the employees when duty required it, was always
ready to respond when assistance was required outside, either in
the village or in Troy; the foreman of the company was he who
first arrived and captured the trumpet that hung on the machine.
The services of that engine has been many times required and at
Troy's large fires their presence was absolutely required. It had
its day of usefulness. It was relegated to the scrap heap in 1880.
In 1831 Sanford & Perry, stoneware manufacturers, first lo-
cated on Champlain street; the Canal Bank moved to the corner
south of Schenectady and Washington streets (First avenue and
Thirteenth); sold to Robert Frazer; the firm became Porter &
Frazer after Robert's death occurring in 1830; associated with
him was his brother, George B. Frazer. Mr. Porter went to Cali-
fornia; the partnership still continuing, later it was dissolved;
the firm changed; Mr. Seymour became the owner, who sold to
Smith & Shipley, who after a few years discontinued j;he same;
at the time they occupied their new location on same street, north
of the Thirteenth street bridge; the members of all firms have
passed away and what had been a lucrative business in years
gone by is eliminated from the industries of the village. The firm
of John & J. W. Russell were also proprietors at one time.
Old time settlers: J. M. Edgerton, L. W. Jackson, Peter
Fonda, B. Smalley, Thomas Willard, E. L. Stebbins, Edward
Cutler, John M. Niles, Amos Hoxie, A. L. Hemstreet, J. Aldrich,
Peter Valley, Edward Mallory, Orlando Latham, George Parker,
J. R. Bucklin, John McKibbin, G. W. Pitman, Huett Chard, John
Oswald, Thomas Colyer, James Tully, Soloman Greenman, Max
Schillor, Adam Thornburn, Joel Wallace, W. C. Stowell, Moses
Niagara Engine Co. No. 1 (gooseneck brakes). Organized in
Gibbonsville on May 12, 1828. Purchased of Josiah Hubbard,
for $125. Captain, S. S. Wandell; 1st Lieut., Isaac Chapman;
2nd Lieut., Levy Lyncoln. Uniform, white duck suits. Charter
members: S. S. Wandell, Levi Lyncoln, Isaac Chapman, Wm.
Tucker, Wm. Andrews, D. I. Dutcher, Jules Anable, Wm. Foot,
Alfred Myers, G. Taylor. Their first ball held at Delevan House,
Feb. 10, 1829. In 1838 the trustees of West Troy purchased
this company a new engine, for $1,000, from Holroyd & Co.,
Waterford, N. Y., and named the company Rip Van Winkle Co.
No. 1. Foremen: Wm. Andrews, Sr. ; 1840, W. H. Hayford;
1842, Alfred Myers; 1844, Wm. Foot; 1847, Geo. Taylor; 1850,
Ed. Dyer; 1853, Wm. Andrews, Jr.; 1856, Wm. L. Oswald;
1858, G. H. Swartwout; 1860, E. A. Smith; 1861, Jas. Warford ;
1862, Thos. Moore; 1863-1866, Jas. Hamil. Members: Phil
Curtis, Ben Conger, Abe Dyer, Lon Chamberlin, A. Pack, Silas
Betts, Jules Anable, W. H. Tompkins, L. E. Abbott, J. Morran,
S. Crawford, P. Lansing, W. Parker, W. C. Stewart, David
Andrews, S. Conger, C. Olcott, John Oswald, Francis Gorman,
W. Cramer, J. J. Conde, J. E. Craig, H. Temple, Wm. Hackett,
J. C. Fellows, E. Vanderlip, R. Temple, N. Kirker.
The company was composed of the young men of the Second
ward. The engine was a handsome piano box, with brass dome,
and elaborate trimmings of the same metal. The company was
always prompt in attending to duty. Their social features —
members being mostly rivermen — occurred during the winter
months. House rear of the Washington M. E. Church. In winter,
Apollo Hall, Troy, Tremont and Empire House were the scenes
of many festive occasions, though sleighing parties to out of town
hotels, and visits to nearby companies, were quite frequent. One
of the most noted balls of the company was held February 13,
1851, at Apollo Hall — Edward Dyer, Foreman; Al. Vedder,
W. H. Haywood, Geo. H. Taylor, committee of arrangements.
In 1853, January 14, the first ball held in Union Place Hall,
after its erection, was by this company, and anyone living at this
date who attended same can truthfully say that there never was a
finer display of taste in the decorations, a more select assembly, or
a finer banquet, than the one that was prepared for their guest,
by James Badgly of the Tremont House. William Andrews, fore-
Their noted excursion to Newburgh, in connection with the
Light Guards, is called to mind. It being a double one, the mili-
tary, firemen and citizens of that city vied with each other, and
in the arrangement of that reception, and the generous hospitality
accorded, was a surprise to their most sanquine expectations, and
made both companies deeply their debtor.
They rendered service in 1848 at the Halsted fire, Mechanics
Hall and stables, River street, Troy, May 1. Also at the Quiggans
Mill fire, August 25, 1854. After laying hose twice on dock be-
tween lumber piles the heat drove them out, and they again
boarded the ferry boat, fought the fire along the dock, and checked
it below Adams street at woodyards of the H. R. Road. Wm.
Andrews, Jr., foreman.
In 1862 they again responded, with all the rest of the depart-
ment, including the Arsenal engine, and the authorities at the
post sent men under charge of Mr. Getman to blow up buildings
as was required. Thos. Moore, foreman.
They occupied their new house, corner of Fourteenth street
and Broadway (Andrews building) in 1863, their last foreman
being James Hamil, who died 1909.
Their last reception in the old house occurred in 1861 — a
banquet tendered to Hercules Hook and Ladder, and Spartan
Hook and Ladder Companies. While the festivities were at their
height Tivoli Hose Co. of Albany, out on a sleigh-ride, drove up
to the house. The newcomers were received most pleasantly, the
time passing pleasantly until the wee small hours of the morning,
when all departed for their homes bearing good will toward their
entertainers. James Warford, foreman.
William E. Warner, stoneware factory, Schenectady street and
Champlain street (Thirteenth street), established a large trade
throughout this and the northern part of the State, exchanging
stoneware for any and all kinds of merchandise. Freighted his
white and blue clay on his own vessels from New Jersey. His
residence on Washington street had four pillars made of fancy
carved clay jugs. An expert shot with rifle, capturing many
prizes in contest on the ice, hitting the bullseye at long distance
in the head of a barrel of flour. Friend to the poor and a congenial
companion. Factory burned in 1852.
William Warner, engineer on river craft. Many years a resi-
dent of New York; one of early schoolmates that has passed be-
Capt. George Warner; well known as a prominent and trusted
river captain and pilot. Gone but remembered.
Henry Warner. Conducted the painting and papering business.
Learned the trade, practicing in his father's carriage house when a
boy. Member of Oswald Hose Co. Resides in Troy.
Robert Williams, an old-timer. Auctioneer, sheriff, merchant.
A very popular man in the 30's; a man of good judgment and
thoroughly posted in business matters of that period.
Watervliet Turnpike Co. Organized in 1828. Thomas Hill-
house and Robert Dunlop, contractors. The Pike commenced at
the northern boundary of the city of Albany and extended to
Buffalo street, north boundary at Gibbonsville (now Broadway
September 29, 1829. North River Steamboat Line in commis-
sion. Capt. Canter, captain of Chancellor Livingston.
Capt. Wiswall commanded the James Kemp when LaFayette
visited Albany in 1824; landed below Greenbush ; escorted through
village to ferry by the military and crossed to Albany; received
John McLean; from Ireland in 1828 to the village of West
Troy. Served as clerk for different firms. Died in 1871.
Joseph McLean (son), born in Ireland in 1827; came with his
father. After finishing his education, entered the employ of
Dauchy & Co., lumber merchants, as bookkeeper. Later the firm
was Dauchy & McLean. In 1856 formed co-partnership with
John Reiley in the coal business, and continued the same fifty-six
years. His demise occurred in 1906. The business fraternity
lost a valuable member and the city a prominent resident.
Eugene McLean, educated in the village schools; graduate of
Troy High School and Albany Law School in 1882. In 1883
commenced the practice of law in his home town; held the office
of village attorney from 1889 to 1897, one year after the city was
incorporated. Mr. McLean is one of the prominent attorneys of
this section that has won prestige through liberality and fairness,
yet always holding on hard to the strong points of law and facts
with determination yet with good humor, enabling him to win a
jury, or compel a decision in favor of his client.
J. T. B. White. Came to West Troy from Ballston in 1838
with his wife, a Miss Juliette Burt of Lanesboro, Mass. Clerk, in
1839, for Col. Hooker, Troy Towboat Co. 1853, agent of Northern
Transportation Co. ; 1860, firm of J. T. B. White & Co. (R. I.
Moe) Troy & Chicago Line. Mrs. Burt White, aunt of Miss Cloe
Manchester, who married a Mr. Ebenezer Powell in 1830, and in
1831 came to West Troy and leased the building afterward known
as the Mansion House on Broadway and Sixteenth street. In
1838, a building standing where the Collins House now stands,
containing stores, was rebuilt for a hotel by one H. ~N. Carr, who
leased it to Mrs. Cloe Manchester Powell ; gave it the name of
West Troy Exchange, and was proprietor of same until 1844.
One of their daughters married Henry A. Brigham — Mary
Powell. The other, Delia, married J. L. Caulkins, his first wife.
Mr. Powell leased the Rock House as a residence, it formerly hav-
ing been a hotel. Attorney Brigham also resided there at one
time. Died in 1870. John L. Caulkins, superintendent of marble
yards, died in 1865. Rock House built 1828.
James H. Brisban, a noted attorney of the village, married the
sister of Hon. W. L. Oswald. Died in 1861.
Elisha Powell (no relation), living in the village, and clerk in
the weigh lock office, leased the Exchange Hotel and afterwards
purchased the same, and was at one time collector of the port.
Proprietors of the West Troy Exchange from the time it was
built to 1910; H. K Carr, old and new; Mrs. Cloe Powell; Mr.
Jenks ; Billings Blakesley ; Elisha Powell ; G. W. Greenwood ;
1866 Isaac Collins bought it, died; John Gladding; J. Patten &
White ; J. Carpenter ; D. W. Winship ; Charles Kafka ; Wm.
Childs ; Mrs. McNulty ; Chas. Kafka ; Curran & Arms ; J. Patten ;
John A. Patten's Sons, 1910. In 1839 saloon in basement; pro-
prietor, Myron Hart. Now known as Collins House.
Fred White; born in West Troy; educated in public schools of
Troy. Went to Mexico ; received the degree of Ph. D., University
of the City of Mexico. Appointed assistant sanitary inspector
7th Army Corps of the city of Havana, in 1899. In 1902, left
service and engaged in the printing business, and in 1910, bought
the printing plant of the Empire Folding Box Co. of Watervliet.
Grandson of T. B. White.
Mansion House; built in 1830. Proprietors: Cloe Powell,
Carthy & Gilbert, Badgley, Mrs. F. Thompson, 1863. Boarding
house. Last proprietor, Mrs. F. Thompson.
Tremont House; built by Levinus Lansing in Gibbonsville. in
1822; west side of Broadway below Fourteenth street. Pro-
prietors : A. Rundell, Rundell <&f Dyer, Jonathan & Dyer, James
Badgley, W. & E. Jenks, Solomon R. Greenman, Mrs. Mary
Greenman, Billings Blakesley, William Rouse, Levi Shadbolt.
Burned. For years this hotel was the center for political meetings
and social entertainments. Later the Empire House, and also
Gil Crane's hotel, drew most of the social gatherings. About 1830
the West Troy Hotel in the Fourth ward was built ; Hyram Twisst,
proprietor. It had the patronage of the farmers and boatmen.
Ashael Bennett was proprietor at one time. It was bought by
L. D. Collins and Wight and torn down in 1857 to make room for
Daniel C. Stewart ; carriage manufacturing ; corner Washington
and Ferry (First avenue and Fourteenth). Very prominent busi-
ness citizen. Connected with these works was Jonathan Childs'
blacksmith plant. Both concerns employed the best mechanics,
and the goods had a large sale throughout this section. Mr. Stewart
became interested in politics; elected justice of the peace in 1840;
president of the village in 1848 and again in 1850. In 1855,
J. & G. Dornett purchased the plant and later the buildings were
purchased by the trustees of Trinity Church.
Washington Street Methodist Episcopal Church, organized in
Gibbonsville. First meeting in school house corner of First ave-
nue and Fourteenth street, in 1828. In 1831 — April 5 — Dan-
iel T. Wandell, William Tucker, William P. Hall, Ammond
Hammond, and David I. Dutcher were elected trustees. April
12, commenced building May, 1831. Church was dedicated and
services were held January 19, 1832. Rev. D. Starks, D. D.,
pastor. In 1840 church enlarged and parsonage erected. In
1857 the old wooden church was sold to J. M. Jones, and is part
of their present car factory. A new church was erected January
1, 1858, Rev. Andrew Witherspoon, pastor. Thomas Gun-
salus. Henry Waterman, S. S. Wandell, Daniel T. Wandell, Capt.
Burdick, Henry Gregory, Henry Fitchett, John McKibbin, B. F.
Phelps, E. R. Phelps, John Parker and many more of the old
members have passed to their home beyond, leaving the younger
element to continue the good work, so auspiciously begun. The
societies connected with the church are progressive, the Kings
Daughters are looked after by their efficient president, Mrs. Wil-
liam Morse (Capt. Burdick her father), being one of the first
members ; the Ladies' Aid Society is assisted by President Mrs.
John Williams, who is always deeply interested in the society's
welfare ; made doubly exacting through the death of their beloved
secretary, Mrs. Jay Van Arnum. The Sunday school has been
and is to-day the pride of the members, the yearly exercises denote
careful study by the scholars, and interest taken in the work by
the teachers and superintendents, one of whom, Joseph C. Cary,
a life-long member and closely identified with the general affairs
of the church, held the position of superintendent for years, passed
from his earthly labors in March, 1910. He left a large circle of
friends who sincerely regret his demise. Rev. William E.
Flouten, their late pastor, is succeeded by Rev. Leigh E. Diefen-
dorf, this date, 1910.
Harrison Wilks, agent at one time for the Western Transporta-
tion Co.; later in the grocery business and in 1864 formed a
co-partnership with George W. Gunsalus in the clothing business.
Detective Humphrey, of the N. Y. C. & H. R. R. R., married
his oldest daughter. Died in 1867.
Austin Scott, agent for the Schuyler Towing Co., married Mr.
Wilks' wife's sister. Always attentive to business, with a wide
circle of friends and desirable neighbors.
Jacob Tymesen, descendant of the Tymeson family, who settled
in the town of Watervliet in 1830. Served in the army during the
Rebellion; engaged in the teaming business on his return home;
settled in West Troy ; he married a Miss Rachael Warner, descend-
ant of the Warner family; both well-known. Mrs. Tymesen is
remembered by many for her motherly care during seasons when
they made her house their home ; but to-day that ambition, strength
and will power has left her, and for six years she has resided with
her son, Harmon, calmly awaiting the call that soon will bring her
in the presence of her Maker, and a reunion with her husband,
who died in 1902.
Andrew Seniskey, a well-known river man. Capt. Senisky was
connected with the Troy and New York steamboat service many
years as freight agent. Blown from the cars of the Hudson Rail-
road in 1872 ; died from the injuries received. One of the best
known and popular men in their service. Charles E. Hamilton,
a West Trojan, married his daughter, at present with the G. V. S.
Quackenbush Co., with a service of over forty years.
John Tighe, member of Assembly in 1869 and 1870.
Marshall Witbeck, liveryman, one of the earliest settlers to
establish the business, and had the call to attend the funerals that
occurred ; social, good neighbor and popular with all classes.
Steamboats, Frances Skiddy and Commodore, in 1854.
Trinity Church; mission services were held in 1832, in a school-
house situated on the west side of Burlington street, Rev. David
Butler, of Troy, officiating. In 1834 Rev. Samuel Balis, with the
families of James Lobdell and Raymond Taylor, formed the neu-
cleus of the society. In 1837 the society erected a brick church
on west side of Salem street (Port Schuyler) ; rector, Rev. James
Tappan ; wardens, James Lobdell, A. S. Blackman ; vestrymen,
Benjamin Taylor, John Masom, Gloer Blackman, Edgar Botts-
ford, Gilbert C. Bedell, Thomas Evens, John Worthington, Jona-
than Hart. In 1858 a new society was formed, church erected
north side of what is now Sixteenth street, as St. Luke's,
Rev. Washington Van Zandt, rector. In 1845 Rev. H. H. Bedell
was rector of both. In 1844 Salem Street Church was sold, and
was burned soon after. In 1848 the society erected a new edifice
on Washington street (First avenue), a wooden structure; the
style of architecture was somewhat of a gothic character; this
edifice was burned in 1900. In 1901 the present handsome build-
ing was erected, soon after the other was destroyed, a " monu-
ment " in evidence of the zeal and progressiveness of the society.
The congregation has and does now number among its members
many prominent citizens, and their interest is apparent as oppor-
tunity presents itself to better present condition. The societies
connected with Trinity are : Daughters of the Cross, Miss Edith
La Page, president; Miss Jessie Trimble, secretary; Mrs. F. L.
Shires, treasurer. Woman's Auxiliary, Miss Altanah Frazer,
president ; Mrs. Andrew Meneely, secretary. Parish League,
Miss Bertha Hollands, president ; Miss Marie Bromley, secretary ;
Miss Hattie Smith, treasurer. Their parlors (First avenue and
Fourteenth street) are well adapted for the societies use; special
meetings and social entertainments in the same being instructive
and enjoyable. River excursions are made note of, well patron-
ized and always enjoyable, both by young and old. Their fairs
show taste in their arrangement, the exhibits are beautiful as
well as useful, while the announcement of one of their recherche
suppers creates an appetite. Their most noted fair was held in
Union Place Hall in 1853. Those who have been in the past
appointed to fill the position of rector of Trinity were men of
character, education and refinement, and none more so than the
present rector, Rev. John Evans Bold, 1910. January 8, 1840,
Rev. O. H. Gregory delivered an addres? in Trinity Church, west
side of Canal street (Sixteenth).
Empire Hotel; built about 1832; proprietors, R. Dempsey,
J. P. Burhans, Samuel Segue, E. F. Kennedy, Jessie P. Wilson,
Witmarsh. Very popular hotel under the management of Mr.
Segue, being the favorite hotel for private entertainments and
banquets of the elite of this section. Burned about 1863.
Gil Crane's Hotel (now Devine's), the noted sporting resort for
owners of fast trotters. The New turnpike was the sporting track ;
Moscow, Fannie Jenks, Fashion and other noted horses were
speeded on this pike in early time. It was one of the finest con-
structed pikes in the county.
Patrick Rogers came from Coxsackie to West Troy in 1833.
Manufacturer (bricks). Built the malthouse standing on Second
avenue. Prominent and influential business man. Died July 4,
Peter A. Rogers (son) succeeded to the business. Educated in
Villanova and Fordham Colleges. President of West Troy in
1862 and again in 1890, 1891, 1892, 1893, 1894. Elected
justice of the peace in 1864. Elected surrogate of Albany county
in 1871 and held the office until 1877. Many of his rulings have
become standard. Though his election as a member of the Con-
stitutional Convention in 1893 added another honor, accorded him
by his constituents ; he has found time to devote to the interests of
his native town, looking toward its advancement in business mat-
ters; and at this' date, 1910, an active business man, sociable,
affable, with a kind word to all.
The old pump that once stood at the intersection of First avenue
and Thirteenth street, where one of my playmates broke his leg,
colliding with it while riding down hill on a pair of borrowed
bobs, and the pump corner of Fourteenth street, where we children
drank from at recess, are gone — the finest springs in the village.
The wooden schoolhouse, Thirteenth street, by Dry river; Mr.
Perry taught the school ; also Oliver Patch ; burned in 1845.
The old bakery, kept by Mr. Hitchcock, stood on Washington
street, above Dr. O. H. Gregory's residence.
Thomas Zokuskie, chemist at United States Arsenal, superin-
tendent of cartridge department, for many years had charge of the
display of fireworks on 4th of July and other time in front of the
Arsenal. How many are they that are living to-day that remem-
ber the swims they had out from the rocky beach and how they
floundered among the swells of the steamboats as they passed
to and from in summer time.
Thomas Cairns; from Ireland in 1897. Educated at the
Aughna Cleagh National School, county Antrim. In 1903 estab-
lished the grocery business, and in 1905 removed from opposite
comer to his present location, 1701 Broadway. Centrally located,
with an attractive display of a choice selection of staple and fancy
groceries, it has become the center of attraction of a discrimina-
ting public, whereby the magnetic influence that attaches to " pop-
ular " prices adds to the volume of business, already secured.
The First Presbyterian Church, organized February 12, 1834,
by Horace L. Dann, Hyram Hopkins and Henry Kimberly. Feb-
ruary 27, Mr. Dann purchased the lot on southwest corner of Third
avenue and Twenty-first street. Changed to Congregational in
1863. Changed to Presbyterian; other changes were made, and
at last settled on the title of Presbyterian. Financial difficulties
forced the congregation to close their affairs, and in 1849 the
trustees sold lot, and wooden church that had been erected on it,
to the Ohio Street Methodist Church trustees. This church was
called the Bethel Church. They bought the property in October,
and the old church burned in November, 1849.
Their first pastor was Rev. Marcus Smith. The above Pres-
byterian society laid dormant for some years, although keeping
up their organization, meeting at stated intervals. In 1872 the
few members decided to have a home of their own, Mr. Dann
holding a mortgage on the old Presbyterian property sold to the
Ohio Street M. E. Church trustees, foreclosed the same in pro-
ceedings in Supreme Court before Judges Ingalls and Davis. This
was a surprise to many, not knowing the existence of any mort*
gage, created some bitter feeling among a few, it soon was forgotten.
In 1875 Horace L. Dann, Caleb Nelson, Henry Kimberly, Jef-
ferson Collins, as trustees, purchased the lots between Catherine
and Ford streets, north side of what is now Twenty-third street,
and erected the present edifice. Their first pastor was Rev. How-
ard Butler. The congregation soon increased, some withdrawing
from the Ohio Street M. E. Church. The membership though
not large will no doubt in the near future increase, as the popula-
tion becomes larger in that section of the city. Connected with
the church is the Society of Christian Endeavor, president, Miss
Elola Ball ; Lizzie Nash, secretary ; Howard Dabney, treasurer.
The social features, under the auspices of the lady members, are
well patronized and enjoyable, and the spiritual welfare of the
members are looked after by their present able pastor, Rev.
Lansing Van Auken.
Steamboats Erie, Champlain, and Albany in commission.
Steamboat John Mason, Troy to Albany.
Louis Rousseau built a planing mill on land now occupied by
Barker's collar factory. Later the firm became Rousseau &
Easton, Mr. Easton withdrew about twenty years later, and the
firm became Rousseau & Harrington. Mr. Rousseau died in 1884.
The mill burned in 1888.
C. P. Ives, corner River and Water streets (Broadway and Four-
teenth street), grocer. Dan Shaw, also a grocer, on the same block.
Boat orders large and worth securing. Grocers in the early period
of navigation sold rope, tools of all kinds, ship supplies, wines and
liquors ; store license, $5.00 ; special, $10.00.
Rensselaer and Saratoga counties built the old wooden covered
bridge from Green Island to Troy in 1835. It was lighted with
oil lamps. Cars drawn by horses through River street to Troy
Presidents of the village of Gibbonsville : 1825, Julius Hanks ;
1827, John Ranney; 1828, Amos Larcom; 1829, D. T. Wandell;
1830, Jeremiah Dyer; 1831, Isaac Chapman; 1832, William G.
Groesbeck; 1833 and 1834, Isaac Chapman; 1835, Edward
Rev. Marcus Smith
First Pastor of Old Bethel Church
James Badgley; Badgley Hotel, turnpike (Third avenue and
Fourth street), 1835. Mrs. Badgley proprietor after her hus-
band's death. Built by Humphrey Oothout for the Badgleys.
Luther Greenman proprietor at one time.
Samuel Stickney, relative, to Gibbonsville in 1834.
Theodore Stickney (son), carpenter and builder, proprietor of
extensive hot houses opposite hotel which is yet standing, seventy-
five years old. The Stickneys occupied it at one time. Theodore
S., former member of Hercules H. & L. Co., and foreman in
Merchants, Grocers : Geo. Learned, Geo. Montgomery, William
Andrews, Sr., Boynton & Bacheldor, James Lobdell, a dry goods
dealer years later; James T. Morrison, Ferry house (Twenty-third
street); Robert Morrison Andrew Morrison, constable; Joseph
James, Adam Thornburn, livery; Al. Witmarsh, John Van
Arnum, James Edgerton; painter Orin Deleware; grocer, Amos
The West Troy Society for the Promotion of Civil and Religious
Observance of the Sabbath, organized June 11, 1834. H. L. Dann,
chairman; Charles Northand, secretary.
In early days the corner of what is now Fifteenth street and
Broadway, the boatmen called Slaun Hook.
Landlord Willard, proprietor of hotel, the Rock house ; built in
1828 by Learned & Bingham. Mr. Bingham was son-in-law of
Garrett T. Witbeck, also one of the oldest settlers in this section.
Steamboats Swallow and Jonas C. Heart in 1836. Swallow
was wrecked on Athens rock in 1845.
John Morrison, Robt. Casey, Jerry Potter, Clark Foss went
to California. Morrison died on ship on passage out; Casey
returned; died at home; Potter and Foss never returned. Foss
became a hotel proprietor and an expert horseman. Horace
Greeley's ride over the mountains in one of the stage coaches
driven by Foss is noted in Greeley's biography.
Alexander S. Lobdell, one of the oldest settlers and merchants
of the village. In the early days the stock of a large firm con-
sisted of general merchandise, from a needle to a plough, drugs,
paints and dyes included. Situated on what is now Twenty-third
street, known at present as the Kennedy estate. His canal trade
was the largest. Boatmen recognizing the fact supplies could be
purchased at less figures at his store than at any other point on
their route. Prominent in church circles, one of the original trus-
tees of the Ohio Street M. E. Church; at one time foreman of
Spartan Hook and Ladder Company No. 2. At one period the
firm was A. S. & J. D. Lobdell. Dissolved later. Both opened
separate stores, J. D. locating on Broadway below Sixteenth street.
A. S. continued business until his death, occurring in 1866. His
sons, Henry and Edward, succeeding to the business. Soon after
Edward's death Henry secured the whole output of a wall paper
plant; placed same on the market at cost, his discounts being his
profits. He removed to Troy; opened an exclusively wall paper
establishment on Third street. A lucrative business was the out-
come, but ill health, resulting in his death, the family closed up
the business. A progressive citizen, liberal, the welfare of his
home and family his first thought, having passed from the busy
scenes of this life he left a record that none could question.
West Troy. Incorporated April 30, 1836. Divided into four
Trustees for each ward as follows : First Ward, Thomas Evans,
Jonathan Hart; Second Ward, Isaac Chapman, H. M. Hopkins;
Third Ward, SamT E. Ford, Henry Kimberly; Fourth Ward,
Hyram Twist, A. Van Arnum.
Inspectors: First Ward, Alva W. Kichardson, D. D. Abrams,
A. S. Blackman ; Second Ward, Isaac Chapman, Martin Witbeck,
J. C. Green ; Third Ward, S. E. Ford, J. T. Vanalstyne ; Fourth
Ward, A. M. Richardson, A. Van Arnum, A. S. Lobdell.
First President, Edward Learned; residence on Washington
At this period there were twelve steamboats and seven towboats
The Odd Fellows regalia consisted of a white linen collar and
apron; the Noble Grand scarlet trimmed with gold fringe. Mrs.
Zar Stone, of Gibbonsville, in 1836 made one and presented it to
N. G. Abram Myers, of Watervliet Lodge No. 20, on the evening
of his installation. The apron has since been discarded by the
order. There was a peculiar reason for it.
Watervliet Bank, incorporated. Location, Watervliet House,
southwest corner River and Buffalo streets (Broadway and Fif-
teenth). President, J. C. Schuyler; vice-president, Edward
Learned ; cashier, Egbert Olcott ; teller, Everett T. Witbeck ; clerk,
George W. Wheeler. Failed 1841. The panic of 1837 was the
cause of the failure.
Revere House, east side of New Turnpike (Albany road), north
of Schuyler's bridge. Jonathan Dyer, builder, owner and pro-
prietor ; next, George Aldrich ; Solomon Greenman later. Burned
in the 40's.
The old Parker shipyard in rear of what is now Crummy &
Day's Broadway office. Business was booming in the industry per-
taining to the building of river craft. Ship carpenters and
calkers found employment at fair wages, and launches of vessels
were many. The scene is changed not only there, but the river
front has lost its former attractiveness, docks having fallen in
decay and the sound of the hammer, the creaking of the windlass,
and the flapping of the sails, are heard no more.
The fishing at the Kock House and at the old red brick house
opposite the South Reformed Dutch Church, below the Arsenal,
where a certain murder was committed, together with the house,
have all vanished. No more picking wild grapes on the islands
below Roy's factory and above all, the pastime in winter of the
boys of Troy and West Troy (and men also) receiving black eyes
and bloody noses, are some of the pleasures that the boys of to-day
know nothing about. Donation parties and singing schools at-
tracted the young folks and many were the weddings that resulted
from the associations.
Residents at this date: W. H. Vosburgh, A. McAllister, E. E.
Litchfield, Sam'l Conger, Elijah Brown, Benj. Brown, Wm. Shaf-
fer, Thos. E. Wright, Sam'l Hill, Joseph James, L. J. Lansing,
Thos. Evans, Benj. Clark, Thos. Witbeck, E. R. Phelps, John
Silliman, H. Boynton, Henry Evertson, Chas. Brooks, H. Chard,
H. Ackerman, James Fort, O. B. Titus, Jacob Young, B. B.
Griffin, J. M. Egerton, John C. Green, Alexander Robinson, John
Wyman, Peter Fonda.
The West Troy Female Seminary. A. Meneely, Wm. Tucker,
Louis Rousseau, trustees. Roxana S. Harris and Elizabeth O.
Shaw, teachers. It bloomed and faded away.
Watervliet Lodge, No. 20, Independent Order of Odd
Watervliet Lodge, No. 20, Independent Order of Odd Fellows,
of West Troy. Organized in Learned building, May 15, 1836.
Charter members: P. G. Jacob Gingrich, A. S. Blackman,
James Meneely, David Ellis, Abram Myers, J. B. Bottsford,
H. N. Vedder, David B. Jewett, Jonathan Hart, Jacob Clute.
Members: James Fort, John Oswald, A. P. Butler, James
Roy, O. B. Titus, William Starr, Hubbard Hicks, E. F. Hitch-
cock, E. R. Phelps, Nelson L. Hungerford, Thomas Heenan, John
Ring, Zar Stone, Thomas Gunsalus, George A. Sturtevant, Learned
Haight, G. W. Van Wheeler, E. L. Stoddard, John S. King, S. S.
Wandell, L. V. VanDemark, S. F. Washburn, G. H. Vosburgh,
William H. Lewis, Alexander McAllister.
First Noble Grand, Abram Myers; second, J. B. Bottsford;
third, Jonathan Hart; last Noble Grand, James Meneely.
Surrendered charter May 15, 1840.
Forty members, receiving charter from the Grand Lodge at
Albany, instituted Watervliet Lodge, No. 38, May 25, 1840, in
Chapman building (Hilton store).
Past Grands : Abram Myers, David Ellis, A. P. Buttler, H. N.
Vedder, J. J. Kenney, L. J. Lansing, G. W. Wheeler, James Fort,
Aaron Clinton, Thomas Gunsalus, J. B. Taylor, A. G. Lansing,
L. V. K. Van Demark, James Cook, Thomas A. Smith, Thomas
M. Dean, S. S. Wandell, Ben. Brown, William Metcalf, Benjamin
Watervliet Lodge, No. 20, held their first and only ball at
Albany, June 10, 1838.
First Noble Grand of No. 38, Abram Myers. Last Noble
Grand, Justin Jacobs.
Committee appointed to settle the affairs of the lodge and sur-
render charter : Thomas Gunsalus, I. R. Bucklin, Justin Jacobs.
This committee was suspended one year for taking part in the
new lodge, named Laurel Lodge, No. 209 ; chartered, January 21,
1846; instituted, February 5, 1846, by District Deputy and staff.
D. D. Grand Master, Elijah Cobb; Grand Representative, Benj.
C. True; Grand Marshal, P. G. Chas. Holt; Grand Secretary,
P. G. Hyram Allen ; Grand Treasurer, P. G. T. D. Knower.
Charter members: Past Grands James Cook, Isaac R. Getty,
E. F. Hitchcock, S. H. Washburn, L. D. Lawrence, Roby I. Moe,
Sam'l Wilgus, Robt. Robinson, Jas. E. Dorman, Geo. A. Shields,
Robt. Kilby, A. S. Lobdell, G. B. Frazer, L. J. Milliman, E. J.
Higgins, Ariel Wager.
First Noble Grand, Isaac R. Getty; second noble Noble Grand,
L. D. Lawrence; third Noble Grand, G. B. Frazer; fourth Noble
Grand, I. G. Foster; last Noble Grand, G. M. B. Bennett.
Number changed to No. 39, July 1, 1851. First Noble Grand,
A. G. Snyder ; last Noble Grand, Geo. Nichols.
Number changed to No. 24, 1867. First Noble Grand, Philip
Bronk. Luhr Eggers, Treasurer for years. Charles H. Richard-
son followed and holds the position to date, 1910.
The social features of the lodge have been many and appreciated
by their guests all times.
Branches from old Watervliet, No. 20.
Mt. Hermon. Organized in West Troy, June 18, 1847. Received
charter and immediately surrendered it and received a new charter,
locating the lodge in Albany. Charter members : P. G. Alexander
McAllister, P. G. Isaac, C. Hitchcock, A. G. Snyder, Thos. C.
Wright, Henry Vosburgh, Sidney Guest, Lucius Larney. First
Noble Grand, Alexander McAllister.
Spartan Lodge, No. 62. Organized in West Troy. Chartered
February 17, 1842. Charter members with cards from Watervliet
Lodge, No. 38 : P. G. G. W. Wheeler, P. G. J. B. Taylor, P. G.
James Fort, David Frost, Isaac R. Hitchcock, E. J. Higgins,
Walter King, Asa Spaulding, Abram G. Lansing, E. L. Stoddard,
D. B. Jewett, Reuben Robinson, Hyram Tynsler, H. L. Palmer,
C. H. Baker, Asa King, Thos. Witbeck, J. W. Freeman, Tunis
Fonda. First Noble Grand, G. R. Wheeler; last Noble Grand,
Jacob Y. Anthony. Surrendered charter January 6, 1843. The
above charter members withdrew from No. 38 because they
initiated more mechanics into the lodge than was agreeable.
Spartan Lodge. Organized in Cohoes, at Cohoes Hotel, Friday
evening, February 5, 1844. Charter members: Past Grands B. C.
True, E. L. Stoddard, H. L. Palmer, N. Kogers, Asa S. Spaulding,
J. B. Taylor, J. Y. Anthony, Wm. Burton, J. Seabury, L. T.
Fonday, Thos. Witbeck, J. Van Demark, O. Parkhurst, D. Park-
hurst, Wm. Orelup, J. B. Van DeWerker, Jonas Simmons, Wm.
Osburn, J. W. Freeman, Isaac Fletcher. First Noble Grand,
H. L. Palmer; second, Asa S. Spaulding; third, Jacob Y.
Anthony; fourth, William Burton; last Noble Grand, J. W.
Cheesboro. Last meeting, April 6, 1860. Eight members that
joined Spartan in 1859 caused the surrender of the charter.
Degree of Rebekah.
Laurel Lodge conferred the degree of Rebekah on the following
members and wives of same, January 10, 1852, in Chapman build-
ing (Hilton's store) : Mrs. Isaac R. Getty, Mrs. Abram Myers,
Mrs. C. Schermerhorn, Mrs. Timothy H. Hill, Mrs. Thos. Gun-
salus, Mrs. Milo Marsh, Mrs. Chas. G. Hill, Mrs. Peter Johnson,
Mrs. Alex. McAllister, Mrs. D. Starks, Rev. D. Starks and hus-
bands of the above.
April 9, 1859, committee appointed to nominate officers of
Degree of Rebekah : Sisters Batcheldor, Hill, Woodward and
Brother Alexander McAllister.
April 19, 1859, the following were nominated and duly in-
stalled: Noble Grand, Mrs. Abram Myers; Secretary, Mrs. W.
H. Hayward, Mrs. Milo Marsh ; Treasurer, Mrs. Peter Johnson ;
Inside Guard, J. M. Decke; Conductor, I. R. Getty; Warden,
Mrs. Chester Bacheldor; Chaplain, Mrs. T. H. Hill. Last Noble
Grand, Mrs. C. Woodward.
Oyster supper at West Troy Exchange. Rebekah Degree, No.
9, of Albany, guests of the occasion.
Mrs. I. N. Ireland last member initiated.
Daughters of Rebekah.
Rising Star Lodge, No. 100. Instituted Mav 12, 1886. Char-
tered May 10, 1886.
Charter members: Theodore and Mrs. Elizabeth Hogle, Geo.
Campbell and Mrs. Campbell, H. E. Hurlbut and Mrs. Marie
Hulbert, Dr. O. F. Cobb, Mrs. Candida Cobb, J. V. Anderson,
Mrs. Minerva Anderson, Chas. R. Wager, Mrs. Libbie Wager,
I. H. Fonda, Mrs. Hattie Fonda, Benj. S. Neville, Orlando Robin-
son, Mrs. Hannah Robinson, Wm. Swatling, Mrs. W. Kate Swat-
ling, William Cleaveland, Richard Thompson, Abram Rousseau.
Officers: Noble Grand, Benjamin S. Neville; Vice-Grand,
Elizabeth Hogle ; Eecording Secretary, Hattie Fonda ; Permanent
Secretary, Sarah Wager ; Treasurer, Hannah Robinson.
Second Noble Grand, Elizabeth Hogle; third Noble Grand,
Minerva Anderson ; Treasurer, John V. Anderson.
Private and public festivities have been many and varied, and
the guests of Laurel and Evening Star have tripped many a dance
on the floor of their spacious ball room, and enjoyed the sumptuous
banquets that they have often provided for their many friends.
The festival and fair held in Harmony Hall, Troy, from Decem-
ber 9 to December 18, inclusive, no doubt with the varied musical
and other events offered as attractions, outclassed all previous
entertainments of that character in this section, as all the musical
talent of note in Troy and vicinity volunteered their services.
Dr. Nelson L. Hungerford, member of Watervliet Lodge, No.
20, was killed at Niagara Falls in the Cave of the Winds, by a
rock falling on him, May 27, 1839. His was the first Odd Fellow's
funeral in West Troy and the first public appearance of the lodge.
He was buried in the West Troy burying ground, south of Arsenal.
Later his body was removed to Connecticut.
Thomas Wildey, founder of the order in America, visited Lodge
No. 20 in 1840.
From Columbia Lodge, No. 1, down to Watervliet Lodge, No. 20,
not one of them have their record in full from date of organization
except Watervliet Lodge, No. 20, and as it was the nucleus of
Laurel and other lodges organized in this section, the record is full
down to 1895 and is available to anyone that has pride enough as
an Odd Fellow to continue it.
William Hollands, from Waterford in 1837, established the
West Troy Advocate, the first paper, as far as known, published
in the village. Perseverance and energy overcame the many ob-
stacles that always attach to nearly all new enterprises. Foreign
news was obtained and published, and home matter was given
special attention. With a life-long record for industry his success
was assured. His death, which occurred June 8, 1853, left a void
in the community. The paper was continued by the family, under
the editorship and management of his son, William Hollands, Jr.,
who, having received some knowledge of the business from instruc-
tions received at times from his father, soon became an adept at
the profession, and was successful in maintaining its former posi-
tion as a well regulated and newsy publication. Having studied
law, and being admitted to practice, the paper was discontinued in
1865 and he became an attorney of prominence, was a fluent
speaker, politician of influence, with a life-long record for in-
tegrity, honesty and square dealing that none ever did or could
question. He held the office of justice of the peace of the village,
and was often called to fill other positions, where business qualifi-
cations and good judgment were required to secure desirable ends.
He held the position of postmaster of the village from July 12,
1865, to April 23, 1878. He was a member of Trinity church
congregation, with a deep interest in all religious, social and
philanthropic measures, and his passing to his home beyond, which
occurred 1908, was sincerely mourned by his associates.
Edmund S. Hollands, son of Wm. Holland, Sr. ; born in West
Troy; educated in the public schools of the village, and in earlier
days quite influential in ward politics as they were run then, and
very successful in carrying his point. He is the present teller of
the National Bank of Watervliet, also a member of Trinity church,
and was postmaster from February, 1898, to March 21, 1902, and
a citizen and neighbor that it is a pleasure to meet.
John Hollands ; born in West Troy ; educated in the schools of
the village; popular among his associates. Went to Chicago,
entered the employ of the Connecticut Mutual Life Insurance
of Chicago as manager and cashier, a position that he held with
honor until his death, occurring in 1889.
Joseph H. Hollands, at present clerk of the Appellate Division
of the Supreme Court, at Albany, a position that he has filled with
ability, and has held the office many years. Member of Oswald
Hose Co. No. 1 ; knows his friends, and their presence is at all
Mrs. William Hollands, who believes that the duties of home
are paramount to all else, yet that advice and assistance should be
rendered, not only as a helpmate, but that a reasonable knowledge
of her husband's business should be acquired that would be of
service in time of adversity. Her early-acquired education, to-
gether with a perfect knowledge of the business methods pertaining
to the intricate problems connected with real estate, insurance and
finance, enables her to continue the business, so firmly established
by her late husband. Prominent member of Trinity Episcopal
Church, also of the Friday Study Club, and at times a participant
in the social events of her immediate associates.
Hercules Hook and Ladder Co. No. 1; organized May 1, 1839.
Charter members: G. A. Sturtevant, G. H. Larcum, A. G.
Snyder, James Lobdell, Wm. Haywood, Jas. H. Brisban, H.
Fitchett, A. Clawson, W. P. Dyer, E. H. Powell, J. M. Egerton,
L. E. Abbott, E. A. Smith, E. A. Meneely, Alfred Richardson,
Officers: 1839, G. A. Sturtevant; 1845, G. H. Larcum; 1850,
A. G. Snyder; 1854, ; 1857, Wm. Shaffer; 1858,
D. W. Tallcott; 1859, E. A. Smith; 1860, G. W. Silliman; 1861,
C. E. Tucker; 1862, Theo. Strickler; 1864, Ed. Learned; 1863,
Alfred Richardson; 1866, S. D. Hopkins; 1868, Jas. T. Myers.
Members: G. R. Meneely, Harry Fitchett, F. M. Witbeck,
Elijah Brown, M. E. Wandell, Robert Edgerton, John
Lee, Jerry Berger, E. L. Stodard, Willam Silliman, Alfred
Richardson, John Roy, Theo. Strickler, C. E. Tucker, D. W. Tall-
cott, Wm. Shaffer, E. A. Smith, G. L. Silliman, Ed. Learned,
S. D. Hopkins, J. T. Myers, Charles Bortle, C. H. McOmber,
F. Tinsler, Chas. Hoxie, Wm. Chalou, Wm. Cleaveland, James
Best, Geo. Yearsley, Riley Hayford, Chas. Mather, Peter Roy,
G. H. Lawrence, Nicholas Witbeck, Ed. Hollands, Milton St. John,
with others. J. Thorn Myers, last foreman.
The company numbered among its members many of the
wealthy and- influential men of the time, and entertainments were
often elaborate and costly. Guests from Troy and Albany were
frequently present. Their visit to Tivoli Hose Co. of Albany, in
1851, and the presentation of a service of silver, was a noted event,
and the reception accorded to the visitors is yet remembered by
those now living. Jas. H. Brisban, foreman at that time, made
the presentation address.
The necessity of a new truck being apparent, the company made
the offer to the trustees to purchase a new one, they to give the
old one to the company. After some delay in considering the
feasibility of the same, they declined. By a vote of the company
of forty-five members it was decided to resign, the foreman being
authorized to present the roll of the company to the trustees for
their action. Resignation accepted, closing their connection with
the department. Twenty-two members immediately formed a
social club under the name of the M. Y. B. Club.
Alexander Lenway; restauranteur. Location, north of E.
Powell's hotel. His dining rooms spacious, light and airy; the
luxuries of the season were at all times attainable. The bowling
alleys (amusement then in vogue) afforded recreation to merchants
and others during leisure hours. The reading room, a place of
rest for those inclined to peruse the periodicals provided. Can
you find its equal in this city, with a population of 16,000.
William A. Lenway (son) ; at one time employed as insurance
agent with Wm. Hollands, A. McAlister, Grant, Freeman &
Church; pilot on sloop James Johnson, Capt. Jas. Oliver. His
business qualifications were always recognized by his friends, and
his continued services from 1895 to 1910, as collector of canal
statistics for the State at this port, is a public recognition of his
trustworthiness and honor.
John Sherwood, cooper to the village in 1836. Employed by
H. L. Dann many years. Member of old Conqueror Engine No. 3
in early days. One of the oldest citizens of Port Schuyler living.
Recognizes the decline in business in that section, and feels the
effect of same. An active life many years. The rest he is now
taking is well earned.
Conqueror Engine No. 3 (hand) ; organized 1838.
Charter members : Robert Dunlop, Eben Jones, D. D. Abrams,
A. Whitmarsh, J. Ashley, John Ring, William Chard, J. Clute,
Officers : 1838, J. J. Ashley, D. D. Abrams, Eben Jones, James
Roy, G. H. Aldrich; 1850, P. Donahou; 1854 to 1857, B. Lor-
man; 1858 to 1860, J. Barker; 1860 to 1862, J. Phillips; 1863
to 1868, inclusive, Patrick Mclntee, Barney Timmons, John Sher-
wood, J. Dennegan, James Carson, Wm. Jameson, Ed. Carroll,
Wm. Morran, Geo. Mullington, Jas. Coleman, John Campbell,
Jesse Abrams, Hewitt Chard, P. Bragle, P. Breen, J. Burns,
Amos Bently, Stephen Burrows, Henry Boyle, James Brennen,
Thomas Aiken, James Early, J. F. Fitzpatrick, Jas. Beggan,
J. Mahon, and others.
While there is no record in existence of the early history of the
company, yet the social features in early days were many. Two
banquets were held at the Empire Hotel previous to 1842, one
held in Apollo Hall, Troy, and one held at Empire Hotel in 1853.
J. Donohue, foreman. They participated in many parades, their
first one being in 1840, No. 1 New Engine, Rip Van Winkle, Old
Niagara No. 2, No. 3 Arsenal Engine, and a military company
from Troy being in line. Dinner aboard a barge at Arsenal dock.
Exercises at the North Reformed Dutch Church. Attended all
calls for duty. Friendly with all companies. The company has
been located in three different places on the same street, and their
house was burned early in the 50's.
John Grogan; came from Ireland in 1844; many years em-
ployed by the firm of Rousseau & Easton.
Patrick Grogan (son), also born in Ireland; educated in the
village schools ; had the confidence and the respect of his associates.
Entered into politics, became popular and influential throughout
the county. Held the office of justice and also overseer of the poor
in 1878 and 1879 ; collector of Second Collection District (West
Troy and Green Island), 1874 and 1875; police justice in 1880,
holding the office several years. He knew his friends and was
faithful to their interests ; their ingratitude was made apparent in
later years. He was considerate in the discharge of the duties of
police justice, and heavy sentences were imposed only when the
case absolutely warranted it. There is no blot on his life record.
Herman Mather ; timber merchant. One of the early settlers of
the village ; a thorough business man, punctual in all dealings ; his
advice often taken in financial matters. A representative citizen
of the early period.
Charles L. Mather (son) ; one of the firm of the Capital Lime
Kiln Co. ; one of the number of jolly good fellows, Smith Water-
man, Harry Fitchett, Nick Witbeck, John Vernam and others, that
made life worth living. His misfortune in business ventures
caused sorrow among his friends, while his death created a void in
The First Particular Baptist Church of West Troy, organized
March 14, 1827. Trustees, Edward Learned, Thomas Shrimpton,
Jonathan Caulkins, Hyram Hopkins and Cyrus Kenney. Corner
Ohio street and Central avenue (Third avenue and Sixteenth
street). A wooden building was first erected in 1829 and used
until 1842. Sold to a French congregation. First pastor, Rev.
Ashley Vaughn. The old church was demolished and the present
beautiful edifice was erected in 1870. The Young People's Union
connected with the church (Elmer Truax, president ; Margaret
Dysart, secretary), is in a flourishing condition. The congrega-
tion represents many leading citizens of the city, and their pres-
ent pastor, Rev. Thomas A. Hughes, is an able representative of
the profession, and has at all times the interest and welfare of his
parishioners in view.
The Church of the Sacred Heart of Mary, organized in 1881,
corner Stafford and Buffalo street (Sixth avenue and Fifteenth
street). Their first pastor, Rev. Eugene Rev. (French Catholic.)
Large congregation. Many religious and social entertainments
are held by the members, and a right hand of friendship is
extended to all who attend. Rev. Jules J. Burrick, present pastor.
Congregation large and active.
St. Patrick's Church, organized by Thomas A. Keys, cornerstone
laid in 1840. The Rev. William F. Sheehan was appointed to
the priesthood of this church and parish in 1858. Devoting his
whole life to religious duties connected therewith, seeking the
betterment of humanity at all times. Through his persistent
activity the splendid new church on Nineteenth street was erected,
the cornerstone laid on July 4, 1889. The magnificent altar, the
gift of one of the members, together with the different pieces of
statuary that adorn the interior of the building, is a pleasing
feature. The first mass was held Christmas, 1891. The jubilee
held June 19, 1908, in honor of their pastor, Rev. Father
Sheehan's fifty years continued services, under the auspices of the
societies of the church, was a fitting tribute to one deserving of
the honor. The entire demonstration was a public acknowledg-
ment that his parishioners appreciated the services rendered by
their venerable pastor, and an evidence of the love they had for
him, overshadowing any observance of like character that ever
occurred in this section, and he, their pastor, viewing the same,
knew that his name, and deeds would live in the memory of his
friends years after his departure from the busy scene of life. His
death occurred April 11, 1909.
The North Church, organized in West Troy; dedicated in 1840.
The title was changed to the North Reformed Church. Rev.
O. H. Gregory continuing as pastor. The steeple of the old
church was destroyed by a heavy wind in 1852. It was again
largely damaged by fire in 1901. It was rebuilt on a more mod-
ern plan, increasing the beauty of its surroundings. Some of the
early members in 1840 withdrew from the parent church, residing
as they did nearer the present location, and soon after the title
was changed to its present one: The Eeformed Dutch Church of
West Troy. Andrew Meneely, Robert Robinson, Isaac Hitchcock,
Stephen Washburn, Charles Easton, Louis Rousseau, Edward
Learned, Myron R. Peak, Daniel C. Stewart were some of the
early members. The members of this church in early days were
largely interested in the temperance movement, and a large society
under the leadership of Louis Rousseau and others, was in exist-
ence; and the building then on the east side of the street, used
for the Sunday school, was the headuarters of the society. The
Cold Water Army was a factor at one time in the affairs of the
The congregation is active and the Sunday school and societies
connected therewith progressive, and, under the management of the
younger element of the church their entertainments pleasing and
instructive. The interest taken by their new pastor, Rev. Henry
F. Hamlin has infused new life to the former existing conditions
that is certain to add strength to the organization and encourage-
ment to its members.
Charles Mitchell came to West Troy in 1840. Identified with
the express and trucking business. A citizen of integrity and
Bleeker Mitchell (son), connected with the towing and stabling
interests for years. Moved to Waterford. Died in 1904.
Robert Mitchell, farmer, went West. Died in 1901.
Thomas Bart. Mitchell was in the express business many years.
Died in 1902.
Green Mitchell. Charles Mitchell died in 1898.
Melvin Mitchell enlisted in 1861 ; returned at close of war.
Settled in Trenton, 1ST. J., and a well-to-do citizen of that city.
Derwin Mitchell also enlisted and served his time ; returned and
established the livery business, continuing same until his death,
which occurred in 1898. His family, succeeding to the business,
consisting of mother and sons, John, Robert, Learned and George
Mitchell, living ; Charles was killed by a kick of a horse.
The Mitchells from the incorporation of the old village
have been identified with its business interests, some of them at
times being interested in political affairs, and had the respect and
confidence of all classes of citizens.
1840 to 1852: Travel on canal by packets of emigrants going
West was large ; opposition lines vied with each other to secure the
patronage; they were well supplied with the yellow metal and
disbursed it freely in this port.
Many contests occurred between captains as to who was cham-
pion of the great ditch, but it remained for John McMann and
Elias Rogers to settle the question. Rogers at last secured the
belt, to the satisfaction of boatmen in general.
The timber that came through the canal, made up into rafts,
was an immense feature of traffic and was handled at this port by
Merritt Potter, Oscar Potter and others, giving employment to
many government inspectors. It has vanished like many other
business interests, lessening the bank account of many residents,
for the want of employment. Who of this generation will live to
enjoy the return of the prosperity that existed in the days gone by ?
Protection Engine Company No. 2, organized in 1840 (hand).
Burned at fire, 1865.
Charter Members: II. Smith, Michael Savin, John Savin,
J. McCarty, Frank O'Brien, John A. King, Ed Rogers, Wm.
Cleary, Stephen Clark, Prank McCue.
Foremen: 1840, H. Smith; 1845, Wm. Cleary; 1848, Ed
Rogers; 1850 to 1857, H. B. West; 1857 to 1865, Michael Kelly;
1866 to 1868, Ed Kelly.
Members : H. Smith, Michael Savin, J. McCarty, Frank O'Brien,
Ed Rogers, Stephen Clark, John E. Glass, J. Reiley, Wm. Boyton,
Michael Kelly, Martin Lorman, E. O. Lorman, Peter Garrigan,
Wm. Lawlor, John Mullen, John Fox, John McDonough, Michael
McDonough, Patrick Grattan, Frank McCue, F. O. Donahue,
Jas. Farr, J. McCarty, Wm. J. Hodgman, M. Nally, A. Cole,
Simeon Wilbur, John Hays, M. Kearny, G. Kimberly, Thomas
Agan, L. B. Decker, Wm. Lorman, H. Van Arnum, Sol Green-
man, E. R. Dyer, J. B. Taylor, John Savin, Tompkins Taylor,
G. W. Callen, G. W. Gordon, Wm. Barrett, J. Horan, Patrick
Kelly, D. Cole, T. Ward, Wm. Mason, J. McClellan, John Morey,
This company was noted for its large membership, always on
the aggressive, but often meeting their Waterloo in encounters
with other companies. Old No. 7 of the Nail factory, being their
principal antagonist. Ever ready to respond to calls of duty, and
rendered efficient aid in Troy and other places at different times.
The social features always attracted large assemblies. Their
ball held in Harmony Hall in 1853 was an enjoyable affair.
H. H. Smith, foreman.
Albert Gunnison, resident of the village prior to 1840 ; owner
of considerable property; a citizen of considerable influence in vil-
lage affairs. His son, George Gunnison, prominent also in his day,
and at one time employed by the State at the collector's office.
The Sheldon property, situated on the Troy and Schenectady
turnpike, on the northwest corner of what is now Nineteenth street
and Second avenue, was purchased by Ruth Hawks, wife of
Genera] Hawks, who built the house now standing in 1841 (Feb-
ruary 10), who sold it later to Mark Smith. Daniel Cahaar, or,
as it is to-day, Carr, from Ireland in 1842, bought the property
in 1846. The property is owned by Mrs. Frederick Beillot, daugh-
ter of Daniel Carr. The building is sixty-nine years old. Mr.
Beillot formerly carried on an extensive harness business in old
West Troy, and had the patronage of those dealing and using first-
class saddlery. Discontinuing the business the building has been
overhauled and the Beillots have opened a wholesale confectionery
and fancy goods establishment, with a line of goods suitable to
the trade, that has been a long-felt necessity in this section, and
no doubt will be appreciated by the general public.
Steamboat Empire, built in 1843.
Isaac Collins came to West Troy about 1837, from Troy, set-
tling there from Whitehall in 1831. Proprietor of the Northern
Hotel, also connected with a line of stages. In 1847 proprietor of
the three-story and basement hotel known as the Halcyon House,
southwest corner Broad and Union street (Twenty-third street).
Patronized by the best transient travelers. Later Mr. Collins
entered the grocery business; Harbor Master in 1854 to
1860 ; in grocery and stabling 1860. In 1861 he opened a restau-
rant on northwest corner Broadway and Sixteenth street, and
named it the Collins House. In 1866 he bought the Exchange
Hotel, named it the Collins House, and died within a few days
after taking possession. Mr. Collins was a prominent business
man, identified with the early business interests of the village and
respected by all. Member of the Light Guards and promoter of
their famous sleigh ride to Clifton Park, stopping at Caleb Fonda's
L. D. Collins came to West Troy about 1840. He entered into
the shipping and forwarding business on Whitehall street. In
1850 the firm was Collins & Greenman, forwarders, on Whitehall
street. In 1855 he was alone in business on Whitehall street, and
ran a grocery store on Broadway. In 1860 Edward Wight came
with him as clerk. In 1866 the firm was Collins & Wight. In
1867 to 1872 the firm was L. D. Collins, Jefferson Collins and
L. D. Collins retired in 1873 and became interested in and
president of the Capital Lime & Cement Co. In 1874 the firm was
Collins & Wight (Jefferson C), grocery and stables. In 1875
firm was Edward Wight. Then Wight & Mullen in 1876. It
was again Edward Wight from 1878 to 1879, when Mr. Wight
closed the Whitehall store and held the Broadway store until
1883, when he removed to his building on Twenty-third street.
His last removal being to the building occupied by Chas. Eichards,
on Whitehall street, and continues business up to date, 1910.
Jefferson Collins & Flinn in 1880, co-partnership in the towing
Jef. Collins & Potter in the forwarding and grain business,
1878-79-80. Jefferson Collins died November 6, 1881. Member
of the First Presbyterian Church and charter member.
Isaac Collins was a very liberal man, sociable and entertaining,
and the patronage of the Halcyon House became large. No land-
lord ever set a more inviting table, none ever welcomed friend or
stranger with a heartier shake of the hand, and no hotel in this
section had the balls, parties and entertainments that it had in its
L. D. Collins was a Republican politician of considerable influ-
ence, member of Assembly in 1859 and 1860; also elected senator.
Bernam Collins came to West Troy in 1857. Cattle dealer
and butcher. Opened market corner Twenty-third street and
Broadway in Wight building (now Glass' drug store). Later
contractor and builder. Built the Wight block after the fire.
Interested in politics. Employe of the State at several times.
Charter member of Oswald Hose Co. No. 1.
Patrick Lane came to West Troy in 1842. Became agent for
the Buffalo Transportation Co., held same until his demise, which
occurred February 6, 1895.
John Lane (son) succeeded his father as agent for the same
company, continuing until 1906, when he purchased an interest
in the Troy and Watervliet ferry, foot of Twenty-third street.
Elected president and manager. Mrs. John B. Egan, treasurer;
Charles J. Pickett, secretary. Under the management of the pres-
ent company the boats make regular trips and the public receive
the service that they are entitled to.
The dry dock, foot of First avenue, near Arsenal wall, was built
by John T. Lamport and J. M. Barnard, in 1840.
The steamboat Congress, owned by Capt. Young, for freight
and passengers from West Troy to New York, in 1839; J. Hay-
G. S. Anable, painting, decorating and sign painting, southeast
corner Fourteenth street and Broadway, in 1836.
James Barnard, stove factory, east side of Broadway, above
Burr A. Peck, groceries and general merchandise, next door.
Hibby's Select School, Fourth ward, opposite weigh lock
J. T. Morrison, Fourth Ward House (ferry), in 1836.
Francis Hardin, Second ward, coal and groceries, 1836.
J. M. Edgerton, paints and oils, Fourth ward, opposite weigh
G. A. Sturtevant & Tupper, general store, Broadway, below
J. H. Dyer, Washington Eecess, basement, southeast corner
Broadway and Fourteenth street.
C. B. Allen, select school, First ward, 1838.
Jacob Monk, shoe store, Broadway, below Ferry (Fourteenth)
Wm. C. Stowell, livery connected with Chloe Powell's Hotel,
Sixteenth street, 1838.
A. H. Free, paint shop, Port Schuyler, 1838.
Elihu Phelps, drowned, 1838. Capt. Hardin and crew tried to
Death of David R. King February 23, 1838. Services at
Washington M. E. C.
M. Stephens, select school, Fourth ward, opposite weigh lock,
over Edgerton's store, 1839.
Philip Traver, saloon, basement W. T. Exchange.
Willett & Trip, general store, Broadway, south of Tremont
Dr. A. Hammond & Fiddler, druggists, Twenty-third street,
opposite lock, 1838. John Liney occupied the store later.
A. S. Blackman's death occurred in June, 1840.
The Arsenal Employees Temperance Society, auxiliary to the
West Troy society, organized January 30, 1840. Isaac Chapman,
president; A. Hitchcock and I. C. Hitchcock, secretaries; W. P.
Hall, T. M. Dean, committee on resolutions. Martin Witbeck
delivered an address; chairman, Isaac Chapman; secretaries, C.
Fort, T. Heenan, J. C. Green, O. C. Latham.
John T. Lamport, lumber merchant, one of West Troy's pro-
gressive citizens, and at one time largely identified with its early
business interests. Partner at one time with Albert Richards.
Both very liberal. Few now remember his son, John Lamport,
one of the young men whose society was courted by the fair sex;
he was affable, courteous and agreeable companion.
South Reformed Church, West Troy, N. Y.
Erected by James B. Jermain, 1874
On June 18, 1844, the South Reformed Protestant Church of
West Troy was organized. Philip T. Schuyler, Robert Dunlop,
John C. Schuyler and David Moore, elders and deacons, purchased
for the congregation the old church of Schuyler Crosby, standing
on the old lot north of Eighth street, west side of Broadway. Rev.
Theodore F. Wycoff became the pastor, continuing until May,
1846, as supply, when he was duly installed as the regular pastor,
he held the connection until 1854, resigning on account of ill
health ; moved to the Island of St. Thomas, where he shortly after
died. Rev. Garrett F. Roof was the next pastor, until 1865 when
he resigned. Jacob S. Wycoff became pastor in April, same year.
Illness caused him to resign in 1869. In March, 1870, Selah W.
Strong accepted a call, continuing until 1871. In 1871, contem-
plating building a new church, a proposition having been made
to the congregation by the Jermain family, the same was accepted.
A beautiful edifice was erected by the family, corner Fifth avenue
and Sixth street. Presented to the congregation and dedicated
December 30, 1874, as a memorial church to the memory of
Sylvanus P. Jermain, father of the Jermain family.
Mr. Jermain was instrumental in founding the Home for Aged
Men, situated on the Albany road, another monument of the fam-
ily's regard for the welfare of others.
Residents and business men of the old Fourth ward :
Ashael Potter, clothing; A. Levy, clothing; James Scholan,
const. ; Andrew Morrison, const. ; O. I. Sweet, grocery and
stables; Benj. Tinney, grocery; Isaac Cohen, Sam'l Jerkoskie,
clothing; John Toohey, raftmen's headquarters, wet refresh-
ments and dancing, were the attractions that wormed the shekels
from the pockets of its patrons ; Andrew Abby, barber, direct from
France; Justice Houghtailing ; Wm. Rouse, barber; John Savin,
blacksmith ; James Duffy, cooper ; John Liney, drugs ; John
Rooney, saloon; Jerry Galvin, shoemaker; Thos. Reardon, shoe-
maker ; John Reid, shoemaker ; Jef . Bennet, proprietor of Lansing
House (the old building was erected about 1830) ; Jos Blais; Keil
Casey; Dr. Z. Ruggles went to California in the 50's; Wm. Catlin,
tinsmith and hardware; Moses Whipple, a noted horseman, an
expert with the ribbons ; John Rose ; Merritt Potter, heavy dealer
in timber, a prominent man in village affairs; Oscar Potter, for-
warding and storage, superintendent of first section of canal at
one time, member of Assembly in 1887 ; James Bernard, bowling
alleys; Fred Stem, a manipulator of cards; Geo. Bently, cooper;
John Damp, boarding; D. Lee, mountain Lumbermen's Hotel,
Old time captains, owners of sloops, schooners and barges:
Isaac Hitchcock, postmaster in 1845, 1847 and 1853; David
King, Isaac Getty, Jas. Oliver; Samuel Crawford, president of
village in 1852; Enoch Burrows, Ashael A. Gilbert, William
Crawford, John King, Isaac Hubbard, Andrew Foster, James
Warford, James Cook, Kobert Kobinson, Silas Betts, William
Lobdell, Norman Hicks, Peter Hicks, Andrew Hitchcock, died
1886; John Silliman, William Foot, Butler Hubbard, Thos.
Reiley, Hyram Tinsler, died 1881 ; Stephen Washburn, Alfred
Mosher, died 1877; Daniel T. Wandell, sloop Elinor; (Burling-
ton), Silas Betts; (Belvidere), Capt. Peter Hicks; (Sam'l Brew-
ster), Capt. A. Hitchcock; (Commodore Rogers), Capt. Jas. War-
ford; (Clarissa), Geo. Collins; (Currier), Capt. Thos. Anderson;
(Conveyance), Capt. S. Washburn; Capt. Garragan, Thos. Reiley;
(Fox), Capt. Harlow Rhodes; (Highlander), Wm. Crawford;
(Henry Gage), Capt. Wm. Lobdell; (Juno), Capt. John Silliman;
Capt. John King, Jas. Hardin, Capt. Wm. Wood, Capt. Andrew
Foster, Meneely Hitchcock; (Meridan), Capt. H. Evertson; Capt.
Jas. Farrell; (Hercules), Capt. Jas. Hitchcock; Capt. Wm. Har-
vey, Capt. J. Young.
Steamboat Swallow wrecked on Athens Rock, April 7, 1845.
Attorney Learned I. Litchfield, member of Assembly from
Fourth district, 1844 and 1845.
Charles C. Duncan came from Vermont to Troy in 1839.
Collector for Halstead's stage line to West Troy in 1841. Opened
grocery and stables on pier south of river lock. Burned out.
Opened on Twenty-first -street, south of old Candle factory.
Burned out in 1848. Groeery store on Whitehall street in 1852.
Store and stables, corner Twenty-fifth and Whitehall street,
in 1853. Proprietor of the Morrisville Hotel ; visitors to the
Shaker village stopping at the hotel for dinner, and the objective
point for sleighing parties from Albany, Troy and surrounding
country for years. Patronage fell off when the Shakers closed
their doors to Sunday visitors. Owner of many fine horses ; a full-
blooded Black Hawk, valued at $2,000 (offered and refused), was
poisoned while standing in a box stall in 1853. A friend to boat-
men, sociable and generous to a fault. He died on December 22,
Thomas and Alfred Richardson (brothers), grocery and stables,
on Whitehall street. For years their square dealing with the boat-
men and others established an immense business. Alfred died in
1862. Thomas continued the business until his death, which
occurred in 1870. The business was continued by his son, Charles
A. Richardson, who closed the same in 1904, and bought out the
coal business of Piatt in 1863.
Many were the terpischorean assemblies in days gone by held
in different places both by young and old, where an evening was
spent in enjoyable recreation. Union Place Hall as soon as
erected, with its large floor space drew the patronage. Hotels that
formerly were patronized lost their prestige. Odd Fellows' Hall,
their annex, came next, and under their auspices, having the finest
floor in the village, held all the larger clubs' patronage for some .
time, at the same time holding a soiree every two weeks. The
Watervliet Club also held their dances in their hall, and often
held ladies' receptions, one of which I note, given at their rooms
Friday evening, November 29, 1889. President, A. T. Phelps;
floor committee, John L. Haswell, chairman ; E. Frank Hoy, Fred
T. Lape, John F. Pateman. The Ortus Club, its membership
the largest of any, always held a series of twelve dances during
the winter at Odd Fellows' Hall, with masquerades between. The
folowing officers one year were as follows: President, Havelock
Chaloux; first vice-president, Edward Ketrick; second vice-presi-
dent, E. Crall ; secretary, William Meskell ; financial secretary,
Robert McCormick; treasurer, William H. Hennessey; commit-
tee, James C. Garrahan, chairman ; Joseph Hanna, P. H. Lumley,
John Lawler, Thos. E. McAuliffe, W. I. Collopy, W. A. Merriam.
The costumes of the ladies were always elegant, their appearance
attractive, and the wall flower so often seen at some gatherings,
clinging to the wall until their beauty faded, had no existence.
Two of the largest euchre parties ever held in the old village,
with a musicale included, with each complimentary to their
friends, were given by a gentleman and his wife in Union Place
Hall in 1885 and 1886. To-day most of like entertainments are
held in the different engine companies parlors. Pianos grace the
same, and many of the members being fine musicians, enables them
to entertain often.
James Dunham; born in West Troy; resided on Ferry street;
a well known riverman when sail vessels were in vogue. Later, as
pilot and captain of steam tug boats, in the 60's, through his
employer, Captain Alfred Mosher, he commanded a tug, went
through the canal and lakes to Chicago and established the business
of towing. On the lakes he became the master spirit of the busi-
ness, owning and controlling a large fleet of lake craft and event-
ually became president of the company" that controlled the same.
Many of the young men engaged in the same business, went to
Chicago and not only found positions under him, but gained pro-
motion and a competency. Mr. Dunham was popular and well
liked, as he had received assistance that had placed him in position
to aid others ; his appreciation of same was apparent in his willing-
ness to respond to any calls for assistance, never forgetting his
early associates. Died in 1884.
Caroline Dunham (sister) ; belle of the Second ward in her
youthful days, a favorite with all her associates, and teacher of the
primary class at one time at the Second ward brick schoolhouse.
Married and removed from the village.
Orrin and Len Hannuni, Royal and Orville Jaqueway, attended
the school, and possibly there are some that remember who fired
the cannon under the parlor floor of the first house south of the
school, and scattered the wedding guests. Also who threw the
pepper on the red-hot stove in the Methodist classroom and drove
the singing class of Thomas Gunsalus, one winter night, to the cold
infant classroom upstairs.
Daniel Hartnett, Robert Morrison, and Ephraim B. Baldwin,
appointed by the State, built the dyke and pier — dyke north end,
and pier south end of Green Island. By this improvement the
water of the Mohawk river was turned to raise the water in the
basin. The fourteen-foot bluff on east side of island was cut down,
the dirt used to fill in. A skiff ferry was at that time in operation
to Troy ; West Troy landing at the big trees, foot of Twenty-third
street. The Wiswalls, D. T. Wandell, Robert Morrison and
Daniel Hartnett operated same at different periods. It was at this
ferry that eleven persons lost their lives by the upsetting of one of
William Stead Myers (writer's brother) was killed in 1847 on
grandfather's (D. T. Wandell) horse ferry boat, foot of River and
Ferry street (Broadway and Fourteenth). Henry York Latour
conveyed the body home, being the only one to witness the acci-
James Blunn; to West Troy in 1847. With Thomas and Wil-
liam Blunn they built many of the brick buildings yet standing in
the city. At one time interested in the manufacture of gelatine.
A business man of the old English type, prominent and respected
as a first class citizen. His daughters, Mrs. J. C. Covert, Sr.,
Mrs. F. W. Covert and Mrs. Geo. Linn of Troy.
Otis Wood ; a resident of West Troy about 1838. One of the
organizers of the Ohio Street M. E. Church in 1849. Proprietor
of the largest teaming and trucking plant in the days of activity in
the lumber trade. Specially interested in religious movements;
one who was ready to assist the unfortunate, and extend the hand
of friendship to those that were worthy of recognition.
James Otis Wood (son) ; born, raised and educated in the vil-
lage. Succeeded to the business established by his father; con-
tinued the same until it became unprofitable. Entered into
politics ; was appointed captain of West Troy police force in 1 870 ;
held the same until 1886 ; appointed court officer, district attor-
ney's office at Albany, 1896; ice business in 1900; appointed to a
responsible position at custom house, New York, in 1902 ; held
same until his death, occurring in 1906. Was prominent in
politics, with a wide circle of acquaintances. Considerate and
kind in family affairs ; good citizen, and agreeable associate.
James O. Wood, Jr. ; son of J. O. W. Received his education
in the village; served clerkship in Albany some time. A young
man of exemplary habits; his home life an ideal one, and very
popular among his associates. His death, occurring July 5, 1899,
left a void in the family circle, ending the life work of a promising
young citizen. His wife, Mrs. Margaret (Lamphere) Wood,
daughter of Wm. Lamphere, survives him.
Patrick Kelly, born in Ireland in 1826. Came to West Troy in
1844. In connection with the livery business that he established
in the early 40's he added the express and teaming business, and
was also an extensive dealer in blooded horses. He not only had
the good will of the general public, but held the confidence and the
personal friendship, together with an intimate social relation, with
the most prominent business men of the community. Gifted with
that inbred Irish wit that nearly all natives of the Emerald Isle
possess, he was a welcome guest to many social entertainments.
Mr. Kelly, during a long and strenuous business activity, has at
times been financially successful, but like many others looking for
a day of rest, his hopes have been shattered, and misfortune has
often been his lot, through large fires that have occurred in the
village, and consumed at different dates property belonging to him
of many thousand dollars, with no insurance. Yet to-day, 1910,
at 84 years old, he is the same old companionable Patrick Kelly.
Steamboats Rip Van Winkle, Hendrick Hudson, Niagara, in
commission in 1845; Thomas Powell, in 1846; Alida, in 1847.
Team of horses and four passengers in a barouch, were drowned
on Troy side of the Hudson in 1847, near Division street. Backed
off the ferryboat running from West Troy.
In 1839 Ebenezer Wis wall purchased the exclusive right of
the then existing ferry privileges on both sides of the river. The
steam ferry at upper ferry was discontinued in 1875.
William C. Durant, well known, prominent in business
circles, pioneer in all good propositions looking toward the
advancement of business and moral prosperity. Postmaster July
Fayette B. Durant (son), identified with the political, relig-
ious, social, moral and business life of both the old village and the
present city. He is well acquainted with the political status of
the city and is one of the few having the city's interest honestly
at heart that make it their duty to be present at all gatherings
where the same is being considered.
In 1845 the noted horse, Fannie Jenks, made her 100 miles in
nine hours, forty minutes and thirty-five seconds, driven by P.
Hunt and Warren Blakely. The next day the horse Fashion and
Fanny Jenks were driven tandem through the streets of the
John Cary, one of the early settlers of West Troy. Heavy
dealer in timber. The firm of Cary & McDonough (John)
forty-five years ago was one of the largest firms in their line in
this section. They employed many men and teams hauling heavy
timber from the western part of this county, one of their oldest
employes being John O'Brien, living, eighty-eight years old.
Another one, long since dead, was good natured Green Mitchell.
John Cook, from England to West Troy in 1847, with his
son William, contractor; also an evangelist of some note. Con-
tracted with the Wiswalls to drain their entire farm. Died in
William Cook, employed at Roy's mills as boss shearer, hold-
ing the position until his death in 1895.
Richard Cook, to West Troy in 1840. Traveling man for
Troy collar firms many years, also serving often as a Methodist
preacher through country districts, private school on Temperance
Hill in 1865, at one time teacher Second Ward public school.
Went West and died in Jessup, Iowa, in 1887.
On October 10, 1847, services were held in the Trinity brick
church then situated on Canal street near upper ferry. North side
vMrs. Brennen from New York held a concert and musicale in
the Tremont House November 3, 1847.
E. L. Stoddard in April, 1847, advertised to sell his dry goods
stock, preparing to go to California.
T. Connors, clothing, on Whitehall street in 1847.
Steam ferry boat at lower ferry in day time, horse boats at
Harris Winfield, dog training school at James Morrison's
saloon on Canal street south of what is now Twenty-third street.
Below Change bridge in 1847.
J. Jaques, pump manufacturer, River street below ferry in
John Oswald, grocery store, corner Broadway and Fourteenth
street. Later James Cook occupied it. Merchants often met there,
and many a jolly party went from there on sleigh rides to out of
town hotels, and with their wives enjoyed an agreeable outing.
H. A. Langworthy's private school was held in the second story
of the building.
William Christie lost his life in 1848 by an explosion in the
percussion laboratory at the arsenal. The powder was used to
make caps for fire arms. Cartridges were made for the army dur-
ing the Mexican war. Later George Lawrence established a car-
tridge factory on Temperance Hill where many of the lads of the
village earned good money and received their pay in gold pieces.
Drs. I. B. Bucklin & John Shankland, druggists, 1848, west
side canal, one door above Kellogg & Co.'s rope walk.
In 1842 Abram Myers's clothing store, site of the present police
station, moved to Troy, and J. W. Hammond occupied it as a hat
and cap store. A saloon in basement ; J. Burrel, proprietor.
The only Chinese junk that ever crossed the Atlantic to this
country sailed into New York harbor in 1845. Laid off the bat-
tery. The writer with his father visited same. The rigging was
of bamboo. A small model of the craft was on exhibit in the
The old grave yard donated by the Schuylers and the United
States government is to-day a spot that the city should have regard
for. It yet contains tombstones in memory of many of the pioneers
of this section. A. S. Blackman, proprietor of the first factory,
died in 1840; Elijah Washburn, father of Stephen, land owner
and grain merchant, died in 1855; John Stone, died in 1832;
David Brown, died in 1828 ; John Grey, died in 1828 ; C. Hovey,
one of the pioneer shoe merchants, died on January 22, 1845 ;
William B. Burnett, died in 1832 ; Benjamin Hanks, died in 1824.
The condition it is in at the present writing is a disgrace to any
Isaac R. Getty, born in Lansingburg, Rensselaer county, N. Y.,
November 24, 1807, became a resident of West Troy in 1839, and
died in said village July 14, 1893. At the time of Mr. Getty's
death he was the oldest living North river boatman in this
vicinity, he having began his boating career at the age of seven-
teen, and he followed the river for fifty-six years, commanding
and owning several sailing and steam boats during his river life.
Previous to coming to the village he married Susan Frances Bal-
lou, of Troy, N. Y., and a large family of girls and boys was the
result of this union. During the Civil war he was in command of
the steamboat Helmus Wells, which had been chartered by the
United States government to run on the Tybee roads, towing ships
to sea that were sent to Savannah to bring down the cotton that
was captured by General Sherman when troops took possession of
that city. When the Congress street bridge was built Mr. Getty
was the first superintendent and continued as such for more than
nine years. He was an Odd Fellow, having been initiated in
Watervliet Lodge No. 38 January 4, 1841, and afterwards be-
came a charter member of Laurel Lodge, I. O. O. F., February 5,
1846, and its first noble grand. He was one of the first police
commissioners of the village, which office he filled for six years,
being first elected in 1870. At the time of his death he had been
a member of the North Reformed church for more than half a
century. He was a kindly man, sober and industrious, and much
respected in the community. His parents were of Scotch-Irish
ancestry, and his father was a veteran of the Revolution, having
been with Ethan Allen at the taking of Fort Ticonderoga, partici-
pated in the battle of Bennington, and was at the surrender of
James Forsyth (Scotch-fossfe) came from Ireland in 1848.
Farmer in the old country. In 1849 he found employment at
S. C. Dermott's flour mill, under the superintendent, E. Hanaman,
and learned the trade. Later bought Breaker Island, farmed it
some years and sold it to Erastus Corning in 1872 ; later dealt
some in real estate. Closed his earthly labors in 1888.
David Forsyth, born in 1849, and at the age of 17 entered the
employ of Scarborough & Hollands, grocery, coal and wood busi-
ness, corner Broadway and Eighth street. In 1888 established the
coal and wood business in his own name. Died in 1894. After
David's death the family, James Forsyth and sisters, succeeded to
the business, the present manager being Jennie Forsyth. The
male members of this family have been prominent in commercial
circles. Some of them interested in the political affairs of the
village and have held various government positions.
Dennis Foley came from Ireland in 1855. Farmer and milk
dealer. His experience in the old country enabled him to meet
with success in his new home. Died in 1908.
Ed. J. Foley (son) was educated in the parochial schools of the
village. Established the feed and flour business, located at 1619
Broadway, where can be found at all times a large stock of goods
suitable to the householder and those who have the care of live
stock; a business that is a necessity, and also a desirable home
market for this community.
William Griffin came from Ireland in 1857. Returned to Lon-
don, England, an attache of the Scotland Yard police force for
three years, returning to West Troy and became a member of the
police force of the village. His previous experience with the noted
London force made him a valuable addition to the already efficient
members. He served faithfully over twenty years and became an
employee of the Standard Oil Company as watchman. In an
attempt to rob the company's plant he was severely hurt by the
yeggmen, and to-day suffers from that experience. He has retired
John A. Griffin (son) was educated in the schools of the village
and La Salle Institute. Entered into the life insurance business ;
and at present conducts one of the largest stock and brokerage
business in this section. Popular in business circles, with an
extensive acquaintance throughout the State and Twentieth Cen-
tury business man.
Black Horse Cavalry. Organized in 1861. Colonel, Andrew
J. Morrison; adjutant, Clinton H. Meneely; captains, Charles D.
Rousseau, Lemuel B. Gregory. The company was later disbanded.
Colonel Morrison has a foreign record for bravery as a soldier
which none can question. After the war he held the position of
railroad mail clerk for years. Died in 1908 an honored and
The Ohio Street Methodist Church was organized by Alexander
S. Lobdell, Ashael Potter, Edward Mallory and Otis Wood, No-
vember 19, 1849; The old wooden church (called Bethel) once
the First Presbyterian Church was burned in 1850; a brick build-
ing was erected, Rev. I. F. Yates, continuing as pastor. A
parsonage was built in 1875, and large improvements were made;
a fine organ was added and the choir is composed of some of the
best talent in this vicinity. The Sunday school is large, and under
the leadership of their superintendent, John McBain, Sr., who
has been connected with the church from his youth and is progres-
sive. The general business affairs of the church are also attended
too, with others of the different committees, and his advice is
often taken and acted upon.
The Methodist Brotherhood Club, B. H. Landfear, president;
Robert Morse, treasurer; Henry Talbot, Chaplain; H. E. Sher-
man, secretary; also the Epworth League, W. H. Brower, presi-
dent ; Miss Agnes Rylan, secretary ; two societies connected with
the church are in a flourishing condition, the entertainments by
members are always high class, and a pleasure to those that attend.
A souvenir of early days is in possession of the trustees of the
church (the old organ), once owned by the South Reformed Dutch
Church, bought by Henry Lobdell, and presented to them by the
present pastor, Rev. John Landry, in 1910. One of the first mem-
bers of this church, and now living in Colonie, is Mrs. Thomas
David Stewart, turning mill, foot of Washington street (First
avenue ) ; Hiram Holbrook operated the dry dock, foot of same
street for years ; Edward Learned, once a merchant of the village
married his daughter, moved to Minneapolis and became identified
with the business interests of that city.
David Alsten, cabinet manufacturer ; third floor Delevan House.
In 1849 his stock was damaged considerably by fire.
Henry A. Brigham, member of Assembly in 1848.
John A. Wing, member of Assembly in 1849.
William F. Sheppard, member of Assembly in 1850.
We remember Uncle Billy and Aunt Polly Raymond as host
and hostess in days of yore, whose house then located at the corner
now Second and Railroad avenue (the Blue Eagle), and after at
the corner of Nineteenth street and Railroad avenue ; always open
for receptions, dances and suppers; their fatherly and motherly
supervision over the comfort of the young lads and lassies that
visited the place was proverbial, and they had the respect and love
of all who had the pleasure of their acquaintance or ever accepted
their hospitality ; light hearted, generous, happy and popular then,
remembered now by few.
D. W. Tallcott,' settled in Albany; from Penfield in 1830.
Died in 1849.
D. W. Tallcott, Jr., (son) came to West Troy in 1851, as clerk
for the lumber firm of Charles J. Saxe ; after six years with that
firm, in 1870 formed a co-partnership as lumber dealers under the
name of Tallcott, Boyd & Co. ; purchased the Rock House for a
residence of Mr. Saxe in 1864; sold it in 1881, and moved to
Albany in 1880, continuing the lumber business some years, but
discontinued same, and after a very active life is now enjoying a
rest well earned. Mr. Tallcott was a very prominent and in-
fluential citizen in years gone by, whose force of character and
congenial nature endeared him to a large circle of acquaintances.
The United States arsenal employees, presented to one of their
superintendents, Andrew Hitchcock, a gold box as a token of their
good will; the souvenir was of elegant design and workmanship;
the presentation was made at the Tremont House, where a sumptu-
ous banquet followed, and a pleasant evening was enjoyed by those
The St. Francis Indians who had often visited their old camp-
ing ground on the southern end of Green Island, where they made
baskets and other Indian trinkets that they sold to their pale faced
brothers, ceased about this date.
St. Bridgets' Catholic Church was organized by Thomas Kyle
of St. Patrick's, at the corner of Salem and Mansion streets, in
1883, Rev. James A. Curtain, officiated; later chapel and school
building was erected under direction of the sisters; later Rev.
William Callihan was in charge ; present priest, Rev. Patrick H.
Fire of Grant, Freeman & Church on dock below Schenectady
Lamport & Richards, heavy lumber fire ; below Canal street, east
side of canal.
Dauchy & Company, fire ; Ontario street, east side of canal.
Angel & Strattons, iron foundry; opposite the present weigh
lock; firm failed.
Lumber firms: Saxe Brothers, Sturtevant & Andrews, Haswell
& Mosher, Samuel Waterman, H. L. Sims; lumber inspector,
John Morris, of Betts, Beebe & Betts ; timber, W. W. Whipple.
Fourth ward residents: Hiram Hogle, saloon; Lawrence Mc-
Donough, Michael McDonough, contractors; Joseph Garfield,
painter; Dr. Douglass William Sunderland, lime and cement; a
man of honor; rumor gave him the credit of refusing while a
member of the Assembly in 1871, a tender of $10,000, and no
doubt that it was a fact.
Weinbender's Brewery, in the gulf ; Dry river an attraction ; in
years gone by, returned Fourth ward Californians and the many
sports vied with each other in drinking lager, and the old
saloon of Philip Shannon situated there, was the scene of con-
vivality; later the ladies from different sections of the village
held their picnics at the grove; dancing was one of the features.
Few of the participants remain to read this article.
Benjamin Knower, and son, Daniel Knower come to West
Troy, in 1850, and soon entered into business, and become in-
terested in the advancement of every interest connected therewith ;
Daniel Knower securing the position of general manager of the
Sattinnet factory, and later became partner of James Roy, in the
manufacture of the famous Roy shawls ; an old time merchant and
citizen whose business qualifications were recognized and whose
integrity was never questioned. Died in 1878.
Benjamin Knower (son), born and educated in the village;
graduated from Williams college, also from the Albany Law School,
receiving his diploma in 1879 ; as an attorney his peers are few
in this section, the pettifoging element is eliminated from his
practice, and thereby holds the confidence of his many clients;
recorder in 1904; justice of the peace in 1898. His record as
recorder received the approval of all classes ; a member of the
Albany County Bar Association and a representative citizen.
James Tilley, from Grafton; where he established the cooper-
age business, head linings, together with coopers tools, and as a
side line manufactured ladders ; his son, James Tilley, being
connected with him in the ladder part of the business; came to
West Troy in 1850; James was connected with the business until
1865; withdrew when the firm of Tilley & Littlefield established
the ice business ; dissolved later ; James went to New York where
he died in 1906.
J. S. Tilley bought his father's interest in the business in 1864,
and with his brother formed the co-partnership of J. S. Tilley &
Company, continuing until 1873, when it became J. S. Tilley;
the present proprietor of the largest plant of like character in this
section; the works and yards are on a large area on First and
Second streets and the stock of adjustable ladders of all kinds and
scaffolding is large and the material of the best quality ; a specialty
is made of flag poles of any size; one of the features of the firm
are some fine specimens on exhibit at all times; with up-to-date
machinery, and the employment of expert mechanics he is able to
meet all contracts in quality, workmanship and delivery ; the cleri-
cal work of the business is looked after by his efficient bookkeeper,
Miss Rose Leach and Miss Nina Martin, stenographer, office No.
122 Second street.
James Francis Phelps, Schroon, Essex county, N. Y., in 1850.
Lumber dealer : In 1855 the firm of Finch & Phelps was formed
and later the firm became Phelps & Smith; eventually becoming
one of the leading firms in their line in the village; Mr. Phelps
was prominent and cordially greeted in business circles and his
advice was often taken, his withdrawal from business, and re-
moval west was a loss to the village ; his death occurred at Daven-
port, Iowa, in 1906.
Arthur T. Phelps (son), born and educated in the village
schools, graduated at the Crown Point Academy and Troy Busi-
ness College, and at one time professor of same, entered his father's
office as a clerk; afterwards clerk of the National Bank of West
Troy, and later became cashier of same, holding the position until
his resignation occurring in 1910; Mr. Phelps is considered an
expert in matters of finance, and while interested in many of the
propositions of the period, finds time to grasp the ribbons, and
enjoy an outing behind one of his speedy roadsters ; a lover of good
horses, congenial companion, and a representative citizen whose
executive ability is conceeded.
Lumber firms in existence at this date: Cameron, Coffin &
Conant ; Harrington & Brough ; Campbell & Moody ; Odell, Water-
man & Company ; Philo Dauchy & Company ; Silliman & Haswell ;
Rousseau, Easton & Janes; E. W. Phelps.
Mattoom & Deleware, grocery ; old Fourth ward.
Wilbur McDonald, canal stable; rear of Jones Car Works; of
the many in existence in early days, only one remains; that of
Edward Wight on Second avenue.
Wm. J. Metcalf, well-known fruit dealer; River street, below
Bell foundry ; location once occupied by Martin Harris, a popular
citizen, as an oyster house and restaurant.
C. P. Ives, coal dealer; one of the most popular merchants in
George H. Montgomery, grocer; afterwards one of the justices
of the peace ; a politician of some influence.
John Devenpeck, book store; Wiswall's Block.
Mr. and Mrs. Cyrus Richmond, once residents of West Troy,
whose home in 1862, was Berry ville, Va., entertained Captain
Wm. L. Oswalds' Company, while encamped at that point and
as they left for Harper's Ferry, Mrs. Richmond baked and pre-
sented to the Company, three days rations of bread; they were
drafted into the rebel army, and were making preparations to
leave, but the timely arrival of the Union army, relieved them
from further anxiety.
Captain Jacob Young and his son, Hiram Young, were well
known river men, popular, and well known by the general travel-
One of the best known and highly respected citizens of the time
connected with the lumber industry was Daniel McBeth; very
few living to-day, that remember him or received the cordial greet-
ing he was won't to give when passing by.
Charles Barber, manufacturer; P. Boyle, Exchange saloon,
Broadway and Sixteenth street ; J. W. Bland, cabinet maker ;
Gideon Burdick, riverman ; Attorney, J. W. Byrne ; F. S. Ayers,
one of the oldest merchants of the village ; Orlando Robinson, died
April, 1893; William Athow, shoe store.
Union Place Hall, erected by Rousseau & Easton in 1850. The
first entertainment occurred August 21, 1851 by Jones' famous
cornet band. An address by the then popular attorney, James H.
Brisban, was a feature of the occasion, crediting the proprietors
of the hall for the public spirit in erecting the same, and by re-
quest giving the hall its name. Balls, parties, banquets, societies,
Young Men's Association debates were held therein for years. It
passed its usefulness and became a residential flat.
Coleman's lumber fire occurred same night.
Elijah Abbott, grocery; Thomas Richards, "the Arbor," W
Conquerer engine house burned in 1862. Henry Miller, Eagle
Learned Lucee, John H. Forester, Levi Shadbolt, Henry
Gregory, Lemuel Gregory, brick yard, Troy.
C. D. Weaver, a noted attorney, known as " Seedy Weaver."
Eli Perry, member of Assembly from Fourth District in 1851.
June 15 Grant, Freeman & Church fire.
Young Men's Association organized 1852. Lectures and de-
bates at Union Place Hall. Fair sized library and reading room,
well supplied with magazines and papers, doing well at that time.
Later erected a building of their own, but financial difficulties
arising the society succumbed to the inevitable.
Port Schuyler is credited with one noted personage who figured
in early days as a prize fighter. He, like his father, was employed
in the United States arsenal as a blacksmith, a fine looking, and
a well built man. He went to California and received the cogno-
man of the Benicia Boy — John Heenan, West Troy proper, and
from the Fourth Ward, Patrick, or as he was familiarly called,
Paddy Ryan. Like many of his chums, he was a sport. John
Morrisey, who later became a member of Assembly. Each one
had their rooters, their rise and their fall.
In connection I might state that Bill Pool was murdered in
Stanwix Hall, 379 Broadway, New York, by Lewis Baker. The
authorities of the city sent the clipper ship Grape Shot in pursuit,
as he sailed to escape justice for the Canary Islands on the Isa-
bella Jewett, but was captured, being overhauled in mid-ocean
February 24, 1855. His guilt was never proven.
Thomas Kearney, member of Assembly, Fourth District, in
Bank of West Troy incorporated May 1, 1836. John Knicker-
backer, John Van Schoonoven, Jas. Roy, E. Thompson Gale, John
Cramer, George Cramer, Ferdinand J. Suydam, incorporators.
Ferdinand J. Suydam, president; Albert Gunison, cashier; 1865
title changed to National Bank of West Troy. Thomas K. Knick-
erbacker, president in 1876. Title changed to National Bank of
Watervliet in 1905. Thomas A. Knickerbacker, president.
General Kossuth visited Troy and United States arsenal.
Inspection of fire department at upper Side Cut, Twenty-third
street. Michael Savin, chief engineer of department. A promi-
nent business man, owner of Savin Hall, 19 Broadway.
L. De Wilde, French refugee, came here previous to this date.
Tobacco and cigar merchant. Eccentric but social with those he
choose to associate with. An educated and well read man.
Morgan L. Taylor, ship builder, dry dock and business of like
character. President in place of Samuel Crawford. Vacancy
caused by death. His connections with Southern people were of
that nature during the Rebellion that his sympathies were with
the South, therefore a Copperhead, to the disgust of all loyal
Ball and banquet of Protection Engine Co. No. 2 at Harmony
Hall January 21st, Foreman Henry H. Smith.
October 22d on Whitehall street, between Twenty-third and
Auburn, fire destroyed Myers & Gunsalus' clothing store, O. I.
Sweet's grocery and three stables, L. D. Collins's grocery, Clark
Foss's saloon, C. G. Woodard's lottery office, John Reed's shoe
store, James Kennedy's harness shop, grain, hay, and forty horses,
two valued at $300 each, property of O. I. Sweet.
M. Kilgour, saw and planing mill, passed to Ufford & Latham,
thence to James Kerslake, who died July, 1892, when the business
January 28, 1852. Four fires occurred this date. One of them
was Bebee and Co.'s lumber yard. The years 1850, 1851, 1852,
1853, 1854, are noted for the many incendiary fires in lumber
yards, causing heavy losses to many firms.
John Graham, to West Troy 1852. Engaged with Abram
Myers as clothing cutter, and in 1854, with Gunsalus and Wilks,
on Whitehall street, in 1876, established the custom clothing busi-
ness in the Lobdell block, and in 1879 erected the brick building
corner Seventeenth street and Broadway, continuing the business
on a larger scale until his death, occurring August, 1905. Promi-
nent in business circles, and an influential citizen.
Edward J. Graham (son), graduate of De La Salle Institute,
succeeded to the business that at that time consisted of gents' fur-
nishings in connection with custom tailoring. In 1909 eliminated
clothing and opened an exclusively haberdasher and gentlemen's
furnishings emporium, with a large stock of up-to-date line of
goods suitable to the demand of buyers of first class wearing ap-
parel, in the latest novelties of the season. Mr. Graham's method
of doing business, his popularity, in connection with the fine line
of goods always in stock, has enabled him to meet the wants of
his patrons, both in quality and price, placing him in the lead in
his line in this section.
Dr. L. B. Rulison, born in Parish, Oswego county, N. Y., in
1860. Graduated from Albany Medical College in 1884. Located
in Glenville, ~N. Y., in 1887, came to West Troy and became
identified with the medical fraternity of this section, establishing
a record as a reliable family physician, attentive, painstaking, with
a careful diagnosis of all cases that come within his observation,
that has enabled him to create a widespread confidence among
citizens and patrons that seek advice and service from members
of the profession. Health officer March, 1903, February 1, 1907.
The West Troy Gas Light Co., incorporated. Richard S. Lob-
dell, E. H. St. John, John Lockwood, W. L. Oswald, superin-
tendent. In 1887 the two gas companies then in existence sold
out to the Municipal Gas Company of Albany, the village receiving
supply through that source.
Carroll Corps, a military organization with a record at the time
of being one of the best drilled companies in this section. Their
drill room, Savin Hall, northeast corner Broadway and Nineteenth
street. It was the scene of many a brilliant company under their
auspices, and for years after was a hall for public entertainments.
Michael Savin, their first captain, was a prominent business man,
well known and highly respected. Two daughters are residents of
The largest sleighing party that ever left the village occurred
under the auspices of Isaac Collins in January. Patrick Kelly's
canopy seating thirty and seventy-five other single and double
rigs proceeded to Clifton Park where dancing was indulged in at
the Clifton Park hotel. Its genial proprietor, Caleb Fonda, fur-
nished for his guests' entertainment, one of the sumptuous suppers
that the house had become famous throughout this section.
Citizens, business and professional men alike had some desire
for sociability and recreation in those days, with the red blood of
youth still coursing through their veins, although many of them
had passed three score and ten.
Fire. Ashael Potter's stables, John Toohey's raftmen's head-
quarters, Andrew Abby's barber shop and two residences on Hall
street, Roger's malt house occupies the site.
Mr. Hanz Ten Eyke killed near tollgate, Albany road.
Elijah Simmons, with two friends, collided with another car-
riage, resulting fatally.
Steamboat: Golden Gate in 1852.
In 1855 the number of canal boats at upper locks with those
moored to the Troy docks extended out that far, the tow from
Albany passing up the channel between formed a bridge and
Captain James Oliver (known as Dutch Oliver) crossed from
West Troy to Troy, utilizing boats of the tow to perform the trick.
Light Guards, military company, organized June, 1853. Cap-
tain, L. D. Collins ; first lieutenant, William L. Oswald ; second
lieutenant, J. M. Lawrence ; sergeant, Charles Ducharm. Mem-
bers, Smith Waterman, Nicholas Witbeck, Charles Mather,
Stephen Clark, Morris Cashman, George Lawrence, William
Lewis, George Van Wert, Charles Kimberly, Chester Batchelder,
James Craig and forty others. Uniforms made by the firm of
Brown, Craig and Van Wert. First parade, November, 1853.
Reception and banquet at Empire hotel, Proprietor Furgerson
meeting his guests with a royal greeting, providing a supper that
for quality or quantity could not be surpassed. Many invited
guests were present. Congratulations on the company's fine ap-
pearance were made, toasts drank (water), and the organization's
first entertainment voted a success. Jones's Band accompanied
the soldiers on parade and enlivened the entertainment with ap-
propriate selections. Their first ball was held in Harmony Hall,
Troy, January 18, 1853. Notable guests were Governor Seymour
and staff. Their noted excursion to Poughkeepsie August 15,
1854. Remembered Gill Crane sold the hotel September, 1854,
to Walter Briggs.
July 4, 1854, there were two parades, one by the Light Guards,
captain and marshal, Smith A. Waterman; the other, the Carroll
Corps, marshal, Frank O'Brien.
March 30, 1854, Carrie Delaware, a young girl, was killed in
G. Coffin's mill, situated east side Broadway, by falling through
an opening in the floor on some saws (circular) then running.
The Watervliet Plank Eoad Company abandoned the road run-
ning through the village to its boundary line May 16, 1854. A. A.
June 21, 1854, Porter & Frazer's stoneware factory burned.
A committee was appointed to protest against the division of
the town of Watervliet as follows : A. A. Dunlop, Charles Easton,
B. B. Frazer, W. F. Cornell, G. Y. Van Zant, S. S. Wandell, H.
A. Brigham, lumber dealers; F. Bebee, Lee & Hall, Piatt, Get-
man & Harris.
J. Emmett Brown, a popular young man employed by J. W.
Freeman, died April 24, 1875.
The weighlock as it stands to-day, built in 1853.
John Morrison, an old resident, died on shipboard on his way
to California. Monument erected to his memory at Argyle, Wash-
ington county. Services May 16, 1852, by Evening Star Lodge,
F. & A. M., of West Troy, assisted by Lansingburgh and Fort
Edward lodges. Officers, D. Stewart, D. King and B. Smith.
December, 1852, a man by the name of Peck was killed in
Albert Richard's saw mill.
March 18, 1854, occurred the heaviest storm known in this sec-
tion for years, damaging Seymour & Taylor's chair factory, top-
pling over the steeple of the North Reformed Dutch church and
tearing the roofs from many buildings in the village.
February 13, 1852. The building then known as the Indian
rubber factory, burned ; it stood on Fourth avenue near Catholic
church. It had been converted into a tenement. The following
persons lost nearly all they possessed: Mr. Walsh, Mr. Robinson,
Joseph Smith, W. Wager, Mat O'Herron, Tom Collopy, N".
O'Hearns, John Purtell, J. McMann, J. Maloney, William New-
man, J. O'Neil, Widow Shaughnessy, O. O'Hearn, H. Griffin,
William Kennedy, John Hay, Mary Maloney, James Coggershall
and others names unknown. Building owned by J. B. Fassett &
June 6, 1853. Susan Dennin & Fox (Mesdames Woodward &
Fox) opened in Romeo and Juliet, at the old Museum building
(River and Fulton streets, Troy). An attempt was made to pre-
vent the performance. It was frustrated by Susan Dennin speak-
ing for her sister (the demonstration being specially against her).
She scored the unwashed rabble for their uncalled for outrage.
The scene changed, and they received a hearty reception.
Without stating names, dates or details, I recall four murders
that have occurred between 1845 and 1890, two, at least, premedi-
tated, using knives said to have been made expressly for the pur-
pose. They both served their sentence, and I believe both are
dead. The others their term has not as yet expired.
William Conroy, to West Troy in 1850. Followed the trade of
brick making until his death in 1857.
William Conroy, Jr. (son), established the grocery business
at Third avenue and Twenty-fifth street in 1876, from there to the
old store of Kimberly's, corner Broadway and Nineteenth street,
and later removed to his present location, No. 622 Nineteenth
street, the population in that section of the city having increased
of late years warranting the change. That Mr. Conroy made no
mistake is evident from the large addition to his former trade,
and the confidence the general public have in his up-to-date mode
of doing business, realizing that his stock represents the cream of
Spartan, H. & Ladder Company, No. 2; organizeed in 1840.
Charter members: Oscar Potter, Alexander Lobdell, Milo
Marsh, J. G. Ogden, Wm. McLellan, C. K Tinney, EL Twiss,
Cyrus T. Cutler, Orin Deleware.
" Officers: 1840, John G. Ogden, Cyrus T. Cutler, Oscar Potter,
Alexander S. Lobdell; 1856, Milo Marsh; 1858, J. G. Ogden;
1859, J. O. Wood; 1860, Cyrus T. Cutler; 1861, Ed. Scott; 1862,
C. K. Tinney; 1863, C. K. Tinney; 1864 to 1866, Alex. McLellan.
Fire duty was reseponded to with alacrity by the members,
while their social features were many and successful ; their records
having been destroyed, it is impossible to give full credit to this
company in this work. It is evident that it was composed of some
of the prominent men of the time.
C. K. Tinney Hose Company, No. 2 ; organized in 1866 ; named
after a prominent business man of the village; 1866 to 1867,
Captain Alexander McClellan; 1868, C. K. Tinney; 1869, J.
James Duffy, prominent in all political movements, always a
candidate for office, and succeeded in his endeaver to obtain the
same, holding various positions, president of the village in 1863,
and held the office of justice of the peace many years ; at one time
he operated a cooperage, and of late years was one of the coal
merchants of the city; his death occurred March 21, 1909.
George Perrott, a prosperous dry good merchant; popular with
all classes; stock well selected; catered to the high class trade;
in 1860, sold out and went west about 1865, resides in Marshall,
Jacob Swartz, dealer in books, periodicals and stationery; lo-
cated in what was then the Mansion House, at one time Mrs.
Badgley was proprietor ; located south of park ; Mrs. Cloe Powell
being the first in 1831.
In early times passengers were carried to New York on sailing
vessels, but abandoned them when steam vessels began running.
Lumber, staves, pot-ash, pearl ash, furs, flour and grain con-
stituted their cargoes on the trip down the river ; the trip up con-
sisted of household furniture, tools of all kinds and other mer-
chandise for western merchants.
In 1840, Tippecanoe and Tyler too; log cabin and hard cider
campaign ; a log cabin was erected at the southeast corner of what
is now First avenue and Thirteenth street; speeches in favor of
the candidates and a hot canvass made ; an enthusiastic demonstra-
tion on the election of Harrison and Tyler ; residences throughout
the village were illuminated by a tallow or a sperm candle show-
ing at every pane of glass.
Early lumber firms: George Coffin, saw mill; Cammeron &
Conant; Grant, Freeman & Church; Thomas Coleman; Campbell
& Moody; timber, P. Dauchy & Company; J. W. Freeman &
Company; F. S. Lamport; Herman Mather; timber, Alfred
Mosher; E. W. Phelps; Francis Phelps; Albert Eichards; saw
mill, Jacob Piatt; Robert Robinson; Rousseau, Eaton & Janes;
Gillispie, Dean & Company; Smith & Craig.
1834, business men at this date, as licensed grocers: R. H.
Hosford; P. Wallace, J. McCarty, Robert Dyer, J. McCune, T.
O'Connor, J. Greencastle, William Collopy, Andrew Morrison, J.
Morrison, William Mullen, C. Shorts, T. McCormick, Alfred
Scoville, William Mackey, Thomas Kelly, P. Rogers, William
Andrews and T. Evens & Son.
_ David I. Dutcher, first chief of the fire department, in 1838,
died in 1845 ; funeral services were held in the Washington Street
Church; the funeral cortege was composed of the different fire
companies of the village, and business men; buried in the lower
cemetery; his loss was seriously felt among all classes.
James Roy, came to this country in 1835 ; commenced the woolen
business in the old Satinnett factory, bought the land adjoining
on the south and erected extensive buildings, and established the
famous Roy shawl industry, giving employment to a large number
of employees for years ; he was a thorough business man, a good
entertainer and ever interested in the prosperity of the village;
his liberality was second to none, no society, company or individual
was ever refused a donation when solicited if worthy; president
of the village in 1858 ; the death of his son, James, Jr., just as
he was entering into a business life created a heart-felt sorrow
that he never overcame ; his death occurred in 1878, and his loss
was deeply regretted by the community.
B. F. Knower was associated with Mr. Roy, as also were John
F. and Peter A. Roy; it is still in the hands of the Roy family,
and known as the Roy Woolen Mill Company; Charles P. Roy,
July 4, 1840; fireman's parade, Chief Engineer, G. B. Smith.
Rip Van Winkle with their new engine, Protection No. 2 ; Con-
queror Engine No. 3 ; Hercules Hose and Ladder Company, No. 1 ;
Arsenal engine and military from Troy, and invited guests. Exer-
cises at the North Reformed Church and a dinner served on the
barge Erie, by W. and E. Jenks, of the Tremont, closed the day.
Samuel Sexton, to West Troy in 1858; tin smith and hardware
merchant, established 1870; location 202 Twenty-third street; in
connection with the general business the large demand by boat-
men and others for pumps and signal lamps, compelled the addi-
tion of that class of goods to his already large stock of merchandise ;
a veteran member of the Engineering Corps, Army of the Cumber-
land, General John E. Wool, Post G. A. R. and representative
Oswald Hose Company, No. 1 ; organized December 22, 1859.
Nemo me Impune Lacessit.
Charter members: Charles Fort, John Perigom, Bernum
Collins, Abram King, Henry Warner, Bernard Manning, George
Hill, Augustine Smith, Lewis Smith, Charles Ducharm and
Officers: 1859, Charles Ducharm; 1861, B. Manning; 1862,
Augustine Smith; 1863, L. Smith; 1865, Joseph Holland; 1866,
W. M. Stewart; 1868, R. H. Williams; 1871, S. V. Sturtevant;
1872, George Hill; 1873, F. F. Mosher; 1875, G. M. Wiswall;
1881, G. M. Wiswall; 1882, C. A. Mosher; 1883, H. H. Warner;
1884, Archie Nelson; 1888, F. M. Perigo; 1890, H. R. Alston;
1891, O. H. Mead; 1893, H. A. Nelson; 1894, F. W. Haswell;
1895, Archie Nelson; 1898, O. H. Mead; 1899, T. E. Winnie;
1901, William Helm; 1903, F. A. Mitchell; 1904, G. S. Bedell;
1905, J. T. Hulsapple; 1906-1910, Edward L. Wiswell.
The modus operandi as adopted by this company from its or-
ganization, and the activity of its earlier members, have been
closely followed ; their first secretary, George Mott, a fine penman,
in recording events as they occurred, has subscribed to a correct
and well written one that no doubt has been continued. The com-
pany is noted for its numerous and varied entertainment, excur-
sions and receptions, some of them I recall to mind ; reception of
Cascade Engine Company, No. 2, Amsterdam, 1865 ; Oswald
Social Club, organized 1863 ; dances held in Union Place Hall
during the winter, thirty couples participating.
August 21, 1868, Oswald club excursion down the Hudson; com-
mittee, Robert H. Williams; Joseph H. Holland; S. V. Sturte-
vant; William M. Stewart; Blanch E. E. Williams, Robert P.
Tunnard ; John S. Robinson ; steamer Carrie and barge Baldwin ;
Doring's full band ; supper, Charles F. Lucas.
July 26, 1869, excursion down the Hudson; committee, R. H.
Williams ; W. H. Stewart ; J. H. Holland ; R. P. Tunnard ; E. £.
Abbott; J. S. Robinson; F. F. Mosher; P. E. Thompson; musie
by Sullivan's full band; supper, Charles F. Lucas.
July 14, 1870, committee on excursion, R. H. Williams, S. Y.
Sturtevant, John S. Robinson, F. F. Mosher, Arthur B. Stewart,
G. O. Hill, Charles H. Pierce, George L. Mosher; Doring's full
August 17, 1871, this committee differs some from the above;
S. V. Sturtevant, John S. Robinson, J. H. Holland, F. E. Thomp-
son, G. L. Mosher, A. B. Stewart, J. B. McGuyer, E. D. Scrafford,
G. M. Wiswall; Doring's band; supper, Lucas; these excursions
were repeated often.
The visit of Hose Company, No. 5, of Buffalo, Captain Toole
and the reception and banquet held at Union Place Hall, on
October 14, 1873, and the return visit of the company to Buffalo,
are noted events of the company, those happening later, are within
the memory of the present members of the company, and the gen-
eral public. In 1872, the company added an educational feature
to ad coptandum a discriminating publication in a course of leje-
tures held at Union Place Hall, and opened November 25, with
the noted lecturer, E. H. G. Clark; subject, Fisk, on the crimes of
December 9, Wallace Bruce; subject, legends of the Hudson.
December 23, James E. Murdock; subject, readings.
January 6, 1873, Moses Coit Tyler; subject, a night and a day
in Congress. January 20, Ingersoll Lockwood ; subject, "brains!"
February 3, 1874, Kate Field; subject, the British republic; or
England as it is and will be.
William L. Oswald, after whom the company was named, and
are indebted to him for his splendid gift, was a prominent and
influential young man at that time, and would hold to a principle
that he believed was just and right to the bitter end ; the carriage
was an elegant piece of workmanship, the flat surface of the reel
showing the Scotch plaid and thistle in colors; in 1874 the comV-
pany run the cart over the Congress street bridge to prevent the
trustees from seizing the same, claiming that the village owned it ;
they did not, it was destroyed.
It was a wrong act ; being a gift from their friend ; William L.
Oswald was president of the village in 1861 ; raised a company of
volunteers, and as their captain went to the front, during the war ;
returned home, and elected member of Assembly from the Fourth
district in 1863 and 1864, became interested in business in Nor-
folk, Va., and died there.
Lewis W. Smith, a charter member, chief engineer of the fire
department from 1883, to date of death, 1905.
Allen Corey published the Albany County Democrat in the in-
terest of the Democratic party. It had at times quite a large circu-
lation but was discontinued in 1884.
A serious fire occurred on Ohio street, covering quite an exten-
sive territory eastward toward the canal. It commenced in H. L.
Dann's large warehouse for barrels and barrel staves. It de-
stroyed a number of shops and residences. Among them were
Reiley & Woodard's, Thomas Reardon's, H. J. Hastings's, H. Mc-
jSTulty's, Mrs. Gorton's, and George Gunnison's residences, and
others. Mr. Dann was a very exacting employer, often called Boss
Dann, and there was no doubt as to the cause of the fire, parties
seeking revenge for some fancied wrong.
1860, Albany and West Troy Horse Railroad incorporated. It
superseded Halstead's line of stages, established in the early 40's
by the Jermains, Dunlop, J. M. Haswell and Halstead Bros., and
others. A. C. Halstead, superintendent. Its terminus at first
was at the Rock House, thence to what is now Twenty-fifth street.
The stages were withdrawn. The stables and Mechanics' Hall in
Troy were destroyed by fire in May, 1848.
Edward Wight in 1858 erected a block of buildings on the site
of the old West Troy hotel (Twenty-third street), and established
a large grocery business, connected with large stables in connec-
tion with forwarding of grain interests. These buildings were
partly burned in 1882 and the present block of brick buildings
Collins & Perkins (Isaac, J. T.), fruit store, Broadway and
Twenty-third street, 1858. Closed same year.
James Collins, 1858, hotel, Foley's corner, went to Troy and
opened the Alhambra. Closed it to accept a position at weighlock.
E. Dill, proprietor First Ward House in 1858.
N. H. Kirker, cooper, 1852, flour barrels being the principal
business, mills in this section taking the output. Factory in Port
Isaac Hilton, silk fringe, cord, tassels, etc., located opposite
A. T. Dunham's residence on what is now Third avenue, in 1855.
Gone, like many other industries.
The old Exchange Hotel, known to-day as the Collins House.
From 1838 under the management of Cloe Powell, it has received
the patronage of the traveling public, its many different land-
lords adding something to its attractiveness, thereby continuing
its prestige, while the present owners and proprietors, John A.
Patten's Sons, Joseph E. and Mark Patten, both young men edu-
cated in all details connected with an up-to-date hotel, will no
doubt distance former efforts of previous landlords, through their
generous and liberal ideas as exemplified by their mode of doing
Michael Lettice resided on Temperance Hill, went South in
1860 when the South seceded. They pressed him into the Southern
army. In 1863 he returned home. To-day he holds the office of
county treasurer, Macon, Georgia.
New York, Albany and Buffalo Telegraph Company installed
their plant at the West Troy exchange. The outside world soon
heard of the settlement.
Belgian pavement on Broadway was commenced in 1862.
Through strikes and mismanagement brought about by incompetent
superintendents of construction who insisted on heavy crowning,
the contractors were over a year in its construction.
John H. Gladding, proprietor Exchange Hotel in 1860. A
Auburn street canal bridge fell October 3, 1863. Cattle killed,
one man injured.
New Side Cut bridge (Twenty-third street) built August 23,
1863, when part of the bracing irons parted entailing a $800 loss
on W. H. Hutchison, the contractor.
The vertical wall of the canal from the side cut locks to lock 2
was commenced about the same year. Sage & Co., contractors.
George H. Swartwout, a young man connected with a noted
family by that name, enlisted as a private in W. L. Oswald's
company. Promoted to sergeant of company, then commissary of
regiment, and later commissary of subsistence of First Brigade of
Volunteers, Second Division of Second Army Corps, for bravery
on the field during several engagements.
Peter A. Swartwout, for years bookkeeper for Joseph M. Has-
well (brother of William), moved to New York. Died there.
L. Eggers, proprietor of the famous novelty bone works, office
and factory, Lock 4, Erie canal, West Troy. Established in 1860.
The output of fertilizers, tallow and greases was large. Shipped
to all sections, New York firms being the heaviest buyers. About
1880 the firm was L. Eggers & Son, Luhr, Jr., being admitted as
a partner, and previous to his father's demise became manager,
having acted as bookkeeper and correspondent for years and being
well qualified and in a position to assume the responsible position.
Later Luhr withdrew and the brothers became in possession of
the business. Mr. Eggers was afterwards employed as bookkeeper,
and in 1904 was appointed city clerk, and by re-appointment has
held the office six years ; a member of Laurel Lodge, I. O. O. F. ;
was elected to the office of treasurer twenty-five consecutive times ;
also member of old James Roy Steamer Company. His record
needs no comment.
Thirty-fourth Regiment, N". Y. S. V. Company A enrolled at
West Troy May 18, 1861. Mustered in June 15, 1861. Captain,
William L. Oswald; first lieutenant, Elijah R. Brown; second
lieutenant, Benjamin H. Warford, promoted to captain; George
H. Swartwout, quartermaster sergeant, then second lieutenant,
later first lieutenant subsequent as captain and commissary of sub-
sistence, U. S. V. ; Armineas S. Rounds, corporal ; John Oathout,
first sergeant. Roster of company: John Oathout, appointed first
lieutenant on field at Antietam ; Daniel C. Johnson, captured July
1st, 1862; Anthony Kelly, since dead; Joseph Kirk, captured
Antietam, exchanged, promoted adjutant ; Smith Knight, cap-
tured, paroled, dead ; David Lander, dead ; William Langwell, dis-
charged, disability; Henry Lorman, wounded; Edgar Lorman,
discharged ; John Little, since dead ; Martin Luckey, promoted
corporal; Edward Maddock, captured, paroled; John Mclntyre,
corporal, dead ; John Mullen, discharged ; James H. Millers,
transferred U. S. Cavalry; John Morey, first sergeant Company
A, first lieutenant Company G ; Abram R. Murphy, dead ; John
Murphy, killed, Antietam, 1862; Charles Nelson, dead; George
Naylon, dead; George Porter, dead; H. W. Price, dead; Richard
Rapps, dead ; Nicholas Saunders, dead ; Frank Thompson, since
dead; Martin Troy, dead; Charles Traver, dead; Joseph An-
drews, wounded, promoted to sergeant; John B. Amsden, dis-
charged ; Daniel M. Becker, quartermaster sergeant ; James A.
Brittan, dead; Martin Buck, killed, Antietam, 1862; Donald
Cameron, wounded ; David Carey, wounded, Antietam ; Charles
Carey, John Carlon, sergeant, dead; D. Cassidy, killed, White
Oaks swamp ; Thomas Comstock, dead ; John Cunningham, dead ;
John Daley, dead; Edwin Donohoe, dead; John Donohoe, dead;
James Dugan, David Flanigan, dead ; Martin Gorman, wounded,
dead ; Henry Gilman, wounded, dead ; Alexander Hanna, wounded,
dead; Robert H. Hartley, killed September 17, 1862, Antietam;
Timothy Heenan, wounded; James Healy, Frank Heyden,
wounded ; James Hiccock, Luther A. Hill, wounded, first ser-
geant, promoted sergeant-major, killed May 31, 1862, Fair Oaks;
Henry White, Riley C. Whitmarsh, David Zufeldi, J. McMullen.
The regiment's battle record is : Antietam, Fair Oaks, Fredericks-
burg, Malvern Hill, Seneca Mills, White House, Hyler House
Joseph James, the pioneer ice dealer of the old village and one
of the constables that knew and performed his duty.
A young man, Jonas Oothout, was carried over from the Lan-
sing building to White building on the back of a tight rope walker.
The man rolled a wheelbarrow across, cooked some eggs and per-
formed other tricks without accident. His name was Blondin.
C. L. Yearsley, well-known young man throughout the village,
enlisted August 13, 1862, in Thirteenth regiment, N. Y. Vol.,
killed in an engagement at the front, his body brought on. Buried
in Rural cemetery. Funeral services held in Methodist church,
Washing-ton street, December 25, 1864.
Robert I. Getty, captain of gunboat Plate. Was attacked by
rebel battery and during the action the Plate was struck by heavy
explosives and set on fire. The vessel was saved by the timely
arrival of one of Uncle Sam's gunboats and towed to a place of
safety. Close call for Bob.
James Treanor established the Watervliet Journal in January,
1860. In 1884 bought out the Albany County Democrat. Con-
solidated both papers under the title of Watervliet Journal and
Democrat, and associated with him Terrence I. Hardin as part-
ner. Treanor died in 1896.
Terrence I. Hardin, editor and journalist. Prominent as such
in the State. Conversant with the history of the State and nation.
A fluent speaker. Interested in all matters of public interest. A
co-worker with the G. A. R. in all their movements to obtain bet-
ter conditions for the old veterans yet living. Outspoken, friendly
and popular with all classes. The paper is the official organ of
the city of Watervliet. He was Democratic assemblyman from
the Fourth District in 1885 and 1886.
Pike & Morgan, extensive stables, and C. P. Hutchinson's
blacksmith shop, south of lower Side Cut, burned July 11, 1862.
James Roy Steamer Company No. 1 organized November 12,
1864. Named after James Roy, president of the village in 1858.
Labor, omnia, vincet. Captain, Milo Marsh, later treasurer of
the company, 1866-67; Charles D. Rousseau, 1868, 1869, 1870;
Charles E. Tucker, 1871 and 1872 ; James T. Myers, 1873 and
1874; George H. Yearsley, 1875 to 1880; Reiley Hayford, when
steamer went out of commission. It was the most powerful steamer
owned by the village, and very heavy, yet from the first organiza-
tion until it went out they had a record of fire duty performed
second to none in this section, although the members were light
weights, except generous, kind hearted veteran fireman James
Phelps, and they responded through slush, mud and snow to all
call for assistance, and got there. They are credited with some
notable out-of-town excursions. They attended the Firemen's Con-
vention and trial of engines at Hudson in 1871, and as against
first class machines from New York city captured and brought
home the first prize of $100 in gold. On returning home they
were met by Washington Volunteer company, and by torchlight
and display of fireworks were escorted to the village. Through
invitation from the George Y. Learned Engine Company of Pitts-
field they attended, December 30, 1874, their tenth annual con-
cert and ball. Doring's Band and Germania Orchestra of Boston
divided the honors. Their reception was most cordial and
recorded as one of the company's most delightful visits abroad.
One of the coldest nights in this vicinity occurred the Bishop
residence fire in 1870. This company crossed the ice and carried
hot coffee to the Troy Department. The pipemen were absolutely
encased in ice, especially W. Vol. Co., and many are the courtesies
extended by the Troy companies to old Boy. Their grand con-
cert and fair, held in Union Place Hall in 1870, netted $400, and
they furnished their parlors. Fifty dollars was received from
James Boy for tickets, who distributed them to his employees,
doubly benefitting the company. Also donated fifty dollars for a
new silver jacket for the engine. Informal receptions to com-
panies, visiting the arsenal, were frequent, short notice as they
invariably were. The system of the company and the every ready
assistance of the lady friends enabled them to produce an elaborate
lunch always. In 1870 their celebrated weekly Saturday night
lunches were inaugurated. January 6, 1871, they were again
started, and continued many seasons during the winter months.
The company's glee club, Charles Bortell, Charles Hoxie, Charles
McOmber and Beuben Best constituted the club. Their songs
enlivened the occasions, while visitors occasionally rendered selec-
tions. Many a strolling band of musicians, with harp, violin and
other instruments, have received remuneration from the boys sum-
mer evenings for services in front of the house, a feature that was
always very attractive.
Capitol Police Force organized. West Troy in Troy district.
J. M. Landon, superintendent; captain, Lansing Clute; sergeant,
Abraham M. Lansing; patrolmen, C. Spencer Loomis, Kichard
Crooks, James Smith, Martin V. B. Jones, C. H. Gary, John V.
Decker, Patrick Eogers. Legislated out in 1870. W. A. Swart-
wout resigned as last captain and J. Grace as sergeant. Friends
of Captain Swartwout presented him with a gold badge as an ap-
preciation of his services. James Jones, jeweler, made it.
West Troy Police Force organized April 27, 1870. Police com-
missioners, Ebenezer Scoville, John I. Winne, William C. Durant,
Isaac B. Getty ; captain, James O. Wood ; sergeant, Sylvanus K.
Jefferson; patrolmen, Timothy Nelligan, William Griffin, Charles
Furlong, John Sullivan, William Collopy, Patrick Boyle, Ed.
Rogers, Patrick Rogers. James Boyland succeeded Captain Wood
as captain on December 6, 1886; sergeant, James Coggins; patrol-
men, James K. Stewart, J. McGrath, William McCarty, M. Mc-
Keon, M. Gunnen, J. Osterson, William Griffin, E. Fitzpatrick.
John W. Collopy succeeded Captain Boyland as captain December
1, 1890 ; sergeant, Joseph A. Otterson. Captain Boyland died in
1908. The above act repealed March 1, 1895.
Police force of the city of Water vliet organized 1896. Com-
missioners, J. D. Brown, William J. Fitzgerald, Charles JSToller,
Harry M. Hulsapple; captain, John W. Collopy; sergeant,
Charles IsToller; acting sergeant, W. J. Moreland; patrolmen,
James H. Stewart, John McGrath, Thomas Maloney, J. McKen-
zie, James Burk, Thomas Steel, F. Trimble, D. Murphy, died;
M. S. Corbett appointed to fill vacancy. Captain Collopy's twenty
years' continued service in the department is a guarantee of ap-
preciation of same by the citizens.
William Hollands, member of Hercules Hook and Ladder Com-
pany, at their annual election in 1865, presented their newly
elected foreman, Alfred W. Richardson, with a trumpet seven feet
long, made by Jules Catliu. Their annual banquet was afterwards
Corporation Hall, erected in 1864. Third floor, council room.
Recorder's Court, same floor. Second floor, Oswald Hose Com-
pany's parlors, city clerk's office. First floor, hose house and
October 22, 1865, the hotel that once stood opposite Menands
road burned. Known as the Widow Dayton's. For years William
Burnett was proprietor. Last proprietor Barney Mulligan.
October 30, 1865, the funeral of a young man well known
in the village, murdered in Pot Hole City, Pa.
September 5, 1865, UfTord & Latham's mill, J. P. Wiswall
building, Frank O'Brien building, F. Witbeck tenement, Brigham
& Richardson, E. Wiswall's building, Robert Malone, Mrs. Sharp's
saloon, Metcalf's blacksmith shop, Masonic Hall, Allen Corey's
printing establishment entirely destroyed by fire.
In 1865 Eben Wiswall, Parker Wiswall and Thomas Rath each
erected brick buildings west side of Broadway. Occupied by C.
E. Tucker, Montgomery Witbeck, P. Kelly and Masonic Hall ;
also police station occupied it.
December 16, 1870, a large fire occurred in the W T iswall block,
completely destroying the stock of C. T. Moore, newsdealer ; Allen
Corey printing establishment, R. S. Lobdell, glass fixtures; J. J.
Armstrong and others; also occupied bv Evening Star Lodge,
F. and A. M.
oilliam C. Duraiit & Co. (M. C. Bogue), iron foundry, Wil-
liam street, corner CanaL In 1854 an industry that at one time
gave employment to many citizens. Sales were large. In 1860
the. firm was Brennen & Durant. Out of existence.
The tug boat Hayner ; captain and owner, Charles Hayner ; at-
tempted to tow a heavy raft of timber against a heavy current, a
high freshet in river, burst her boiler, killing the crew of four;
Captain Hayner, William Walter Myers, Thomas Eyan and Wil-
liam Ward, pilot; Thomas McDonald was on the raft; Michael
McDonough, contractor, stepped from the tug as she pulled out,
decided not to go out on it, and stood on the dock as the accident
occurred ; James Oliver locked the tug from the basin into the
river; the manhole plate was blown to Eiver street, in front of
the Troy House.
The next year, 1867, the tug boat Hart, met with a like fate
as she lay at her dock in the river below the river lock.
Clute Hose Company, No. 1, organized ; John Early, foreman ;
incident not recognized, and dropped out.
Alfred Christiansen, from Norway; graduated from colleges in
his native country, employed by many firms in his adopted country,
recognized as an expert in all mechanical work, and as master
mechanic at the Watervliet Arsenal, where he was transferred in
1867, he demonstrated his ability in mastering the many difficult
problems in connection with the assembling of the many parts of
the largest gun that was ever constructed at the post; his death
deprived the government of a valuable employee, his family of a
kind husband and father, and the community of a worthy and
respected citizen, occurring in 1906.
Alfred Christiansen, Jr., Olaf Christiansen (sons), hold posi-
tions as draughtsmen at the United States Arsenal; Ambjon Chris-
tiansen, being a telegraph operator.
Andrew Heatherston, cigar manufacturer on Broadway, south
ol Halcyon House, burned out in 1865.
James Brady, contractor ; wholesale wines and liquors ; member
of" Assembly in 1866; contractor, president of the village in 1859,
and well known in business circles.
Speeding of horses and skating on the river were sports enjoyed
in the early days ; later driving parks and skating rinks were
utilized, head-on and snap the whip, were leaders with skaters,
sides being chosen, each choosing a leader; John Clark of the
Fourth ward and Lon Chamberlain of the Second ward, were the
two experts in that line, and were often pitted against each other.
American Butt and Rivet Company, located at junction of Erie
and Champlain canals in 1894, closed.
Company H, Seventh Regiment, Heavy Artillery; Captain
Charles McGuire; mustered in August 18, 1862; mustered out
August 11, 1865 ; J. B. Pierce, Wm. Barker, Isaac Gillett, John
Berry, John Dyer, Wm. Burton, Geo. H. Garfield, Chas. Mc-
Lellan, Geo. Isham, C. T. Yearsley and John Lock are some that
I call to mind, who gave their services for the country's honor,
braved hardship and suffered with others throughout a three years
campaign, meeting with heavy losses in engagements at Cold
Harbor, Petersburg and other places, where Captain McGuire,
John Lock, Geo. Isham, C. T. Yearsley and many others gave up*
their lives that the Union might be preserved ; " the deeds of the
volunteer," history records, the memory of their heroic struggle,
will never fade.
S. R. Pierce, to West Troy in 1833; carpenter and builder,
continuing in the same until his demise; prominent in religious
matters; member of the Methodist Church, and a citizen whose
word was his bond; Mrs. Pierce, living, eighty-six years old, her
kind and loving disposition and generous nature has endeared her
J. B. Pierce (son), educated in the village, followed the occu-
pation of his father; one of the charter members of Protection
Hose Company, and a veteran of sixty-two and sixty-five.
James Duffy Engine Company, ~No. 2 ; organized in 1867 ; chief
engineer, Michael Kelly; foreman, Edward Kelly; in place of
Protection engine (hand, burned at Ufford & Lathams, mill fire, in
Charter members : J. Smithy, Martin Kelly, Jerry Galvin, John
Foremen: 1868 and 1869, J. Smith; 1870, M. Keily; 1871
and 1872, John Mullen; 1873, J. Brown; 1874, M. J. Horan;
1875, M. J. Horan; 1876-78, M. Grogan; 1879 and 1880, M.
No record of this company is in existence, and very few mem-
bers living know anything worth recording, they had a large mem-
bership, fines or dues seldom collected, join and go-as-you-please
was the characteristic feature; excursions, balls and outings were
James Hamil, born on Temperance Hill ; name originated from
a temperance meeting in early days; the last captain of old Rip
Van Winkle in 1865; the boys succeeded in nominating and elect-
ing him to the presidency of the village, and he served two years,
1866 and 1867; in those days tinsmiths went from house to house
for jobs; through Mr. Charles Hill's friendship he was enabled
to open a shop, his attention to business enabled him to prosper,
while his friend who met misfortune later, no doubt received
returned courtesies from him.
The Hamil Hose Company was organized and named after Mr.
Hamil, but was not confirmed by the trustees, and soon disbanded.
Oscar F. Potter, member of Assembly, Fourth district in 1867.
Steamboats Vanderbilt and Connecticut, running in 1866.
Company A, Thirty-fourth Regiment, New York State Volun-
teers ; Captain William L. Oswald ; First Lieutenant, E. R. Brown ;
Second Lieutenant, Benjamin H. Waford; mustered in June 16,
1861; mustered out June 21, 1863; George H. Swartwout, Joseph
Andrews, William Bartlett, D. M. Becker, James A. Brittan, Wil-
liam Campbell, John Carlin, Thomas Comstock, Thomas Carey,
William Carey, John Carey, John Oathout, J. Dailey, John
Donohue, Martin Gorman, Alexander Hanna, Robert H. Hartley,
Luther A. Hill, Alonzo Hills, Edward Hoffman, Lewis Hoffman,
Spencer Hoffman, P. Horan, Albert W. House, D. C. Johnson,
Thomas Seely, John Kirk, K. Smith, William Langwell, Abe E.
Lansing, John Mclntyre, John McMullen, J. H. Millis, J. Morey,
Martin Luckey, James McCormick, Edgar Lorman, Henry Lor-
man, Charles Nelson, Peter Ost, George Porter, Richard Rapp,
James Shoemaker, Charles Timmons, William Traver, Charles
Traver, Patrick Welch, R. C. Witmarsh, are some of the members
of this company, whose history as connected with the Thirty-fourth
Regiment, New York State Volunteers, adds honor to each indi-
vidual member, whose services rendered possible the perpetual
freedom of the United States and the recognition of the American
flag throughout the world.
Sons of Malta : phosphorescent members ; Smith Waterman, W.
L. Oswald, Nick Witbeck, Samuel Segue, Isaac Collins, John
Morris and others ; excursion to Schenectady, Barnhardt reception,
1852; Twenty-fifth street episode, close call on return; so-mote-it-
be; many more that recall what happened to Len Sweet; who
pleaded his case, and Henry Millers' tearful remonstrance; what
became of the elaborate uniforms ?
Warren Jones built a two-story building west side of canal on
Cohoes turnpike, above what is now Twenty-sixth street. Second
avenue, on the site of the present West Side Foundry Company,
and operated a stoneware pottery ; about six years later, in the 70's,
James Wager, then living on the Albany road, built another build-
ing, having purchased the premises and established a foundry for
the manufacture of stoves. About 1880 Daniel E. Paris became
the successor of that firm and established the foundry under the
name of the West Side Foundry. It became one of the largest
stove foundries in this section. The adaptation of the Paris idea
in stoves for all purposes, secured for the proprietor, a large
demand throughout the State. His affability and congeniality had
a marked effect in securing the confidence of his patrons.
In 1894 William Sleicher, William N. Sleicher and Charles A.
Sleicher became his successors. In 1907 the firm became incorpo-
rated under the name of the West Side Foundry Company. Wil-
liam N. Sleicher, president; Charles A. Sleicher, vice-president
and treasurer. Ralph H. Sleicher was admitted to the firm in
1908 ; became vice-president in 1910. Charles H. Sleicher becom-
ing manager of the concern. K. A. Stevens is the present secre-
tary for the company ; graduate of the Hoosick Falls High School
and Troy Business College; qualified to fill the position; his
accuracy and attention to the duties of the office well attest his
abilities. This firm continued to manufacture stoves up to 1900,
when it discontinued the same and operated the foundry as a gen-
eral custom work plant, the output consisting of light and heavy
castings; also architectural castings of all designs. The foundry
fronts on the Erie canal. Office on Third avenue, in rear of main
buildings. The plant is an acquisition to the business interests
of the city, a large number of machanics being employed, mostly
residents. The output is large and increasing under their present
John Ball was born in New York city in 1856 ; educated in the
public schools. Afterwards engaged in the hardware business. He
came to West Troy in 1882. In 1883 was salesman for James
Hamil. From 1884 to 1892 was in the grocery business on Sche-
nectady and Montgomery streets. Town clerk (Watervliet) in
1892 and 1893. Again with Hamil, as bookkeeper in 1894; ter-
minating in 1906. May, 1906, to July, 1908, assistant manager
of Home Telephone Co. at Watervliet. From 1900 to date en-
gaged in the real estate business, and in 1909 opened his perma-
nent office, corner Broadway and Fifteenth street, where he has
the largest real estate and insurance agency in the city ; also deals
in security and fidelity bonds. Mr. Ball is largely identified with
the business affairs of the city, well known throughout the com-
munity and with business men in general.
Watervliet Council, No. 198, Knights of Columbus, organized
in I. O. O. F. Hall December 6, 1896, with fifty-six charter mem-
bers. Grand knight, Michael L. Walsh. Purchased the J. I. Winne
building, No. 1570 Broadway, occupied same until April 1, 1910,
when they purchased of Colonel Barber the south part of what is
known as the Bock house, built in 1828 by Learned & Bingham.
One of the largest religious societies in this section. Its principles
the " uplifting of humanity."
John P. Ogden, prominent citizen of the Seventh ward. Many
years connected with the D. & H. R. K. Interested in all move-
ments that tend to elevate the financial, social and moral conditions
of the laboring class, and a prominent member of the Railroad
Employees Association ; also a prominent newsdealer, his place
of business being located at No. 224 Twenty-third street, where
a fine stock of stationery can at all times be found. Influential
and well informed citizen.
The M. Y. B. Social Club, organized, October 10, 1868; rooms
north of West Troy Exchange; their theatrical entertainment
and ball, given in Mechanicville, Christmas evening, 1869, under
the name of the Thorne and Morton combination, was a pleasant
outing ; a large audience greeted the opening, and were well pleased
with the performance, and the dance was enjoyed by a large num-
ber of young people of the village; the company was composed of
the following: Treasurer, George H. Yearsley; ticket agent,
Joseph Hogben; doorkeeper, Fred Tinsler; comedian, John Mor-
ton Vosburgh; tragedian, Allen Parker; stage machinist, Simeon
Cole ; clog specialist, Charles McOmber ; promoter, William Cleave-
land; lady actor as Miss Ophelia, Peter Swartwout; quartet,
Charles Bortel, bass; William Chalou, tenor; James Best, second
tenor; Beily Hayford, alto; J. Thorn, manager; $2,000 dollars
worth of American colors were loaned the club by Betts and
Robison, Silliman and Mather, and owners of several tugs and
barges, that were used to decorate the hall and stage; if there is
any of the twenty-two members of the club living I would be
pleased to hear from them.
Prominent villagers who have died prior to this date : Roswell
Wilson, October 8, 1849 ; D. M. Vail, June 5, 1849 ; Peter Van
Olinda, May 9, 1855; T. C. Wright, June 1, 1860; G. K. Mont-
gomery, December 11, 1868 ; George H. Lawrence, April 27, 1866 ;
Henry Yearsley, June 15, 1868; Henry Hayford, September 16,
1865; T. H. Hill, June 6, 1856; Henry Fitchett, 1867; Jonathan
Childs; D. M. Vail, August 13, 1849.
Henry Kimberly, came to West Troy about 1824, and for years
was identified with all movements that pertained to village affairs ;
better known in later years as the senior member of the grocery
firm of Kimberly & Williams. William B. Williams succeeded
to the business, and years later closed out ; he was president of
the village in 1868.
Other deaths: W. H. Haywood, September 16, 1864; William
Macklin, June 16, 1874; Abram Ives, June 16, 1860; Horace L.
Haight, May 9, 1854; Abram Lansing, October, 1866; Peter
Johnson, April 24, 1858; J. Dorman, April 18, 1846; John D.
Dutcher, November 20, 1847; and Joseph Swerchark, 1843.
The old Republican Albany county committee, composed of
one delegate from each district, often met to organize in regular
form, and as often found it difficult to agree, and two committees
would be the outcome; in 1886 this state of affairs existed, when
a reconciliation was effected and George H. Fitts was agreed on
as a satisfactory candidate for chairman of the committee. On
the evening of the meeting Mr. Fitts was called out of town, and
the members assembled, John M. Bailey, Eugene Burlingham,
William Loeb, James Bentley, John McBain and others, received
a letter from Mr. Bramen suggesting that it would be to the in-
terest of the party to elect John McBain chairman, and proceed
with the organization of the committee. The communication was
received with favor, and accordingly Mr. McBain received the
honor. The organization by the election of president, secretary
and other officers being effected, thanks were tendered to their
chairman when the members with one accord, forcibly carried him
to their hotel, they congratulated him on his splendid diplomacy,
in effecting a reconciliation between all parties, and one of the
old style greetings was indulged in, and with three cheers and a
tiger they escorted their honored member to the cars, sending him
home to Watervliet, with the assurance that party interest had
been subserved. The incident is evidence of the fact that harmony
between factions is the one safeguard to success in any party, and
to secure that harmony, the rights and equity of the citizen should
be the first consideration by all public servants, and the office
seeker or the politician that is seeking office for personal aggrandi-
ment should be relegated to the rear.
Aaron DeGraff, one of the first settlers to establish the grocery
business in the old Fourth ward, northeast corner of Union and
Broad streets (Broadway and Twenty-third street).
Francis Disabel, variety store, brick building, one door above;
his wife the Fourth ward milliner; also the stock of goods com-
prised an extensive line of sporting goods, being himself an expert
and lover of out-door recreation, especially fishing. A gentleman
of the olden type.
John Garrahan, from Ireland in 1832 ; riverman, one of the old
pioneer river captains; died in 1872.
Garrahan Brothers, grocers; Fourth avenue and Twenty-third
street; James C, educated in the village schools; with Warren
Mead some years in the same business, but in 1907 established
the present business, on the site of the old hay market, being
centrally located; firms previously occupying the stand were very
successful. With a fine stock, together with their large following,
success is assurred.
Few citizens are cognizant of the modus operandi taken to
secure the naming of the streets as they are to-day. Money having
been raised to pay the expense of a committee to proceed to Wash-
ington, to interview the government officials in regard to getting
more work at the gun plant. Four hundred dollars was the sur-
plus after expenses were paid. Citizen Isaac LeKoy being aware
of the fact that the government refused to appoint letter carriers
on this route unless streets were named, was enabled to finance
the proposition, securing the $400 then in the possession of Fergus
Dodds, contracted with Messrs. Eddy & Halligan, of Troy, who
in executing the work, made it possible to find locations easily.
William Lamphere, from Bainbridge, N. Y., to Troy, in 1869 ;
sergeant one year on the old capitol police force, 1870; resided in
West Troy; employed at Ten Eykes axe factory, Cohoes; in 1871,
foreman of Seymour-Taylor & Co., chair factory, holding said
position twenty-one years; in 1892, on the police force of the
village; for years an employee of the State; a veteran of the
Civil War and a member of the G. A. R.
Thomas Scarborough, from Ireland to Lansingburg, in 1840;
brushmaker; to West Troy in 1845, contractor; firm of Andrews
& Scarborough, carpenters and builders ; then in the coal business ;
firm of Scarborough & Hollands; in 1867, Scarborough & Forsyth
(David), later Scarborough Brothers (James), James was killed
by falling off a derrick in 1883; firm then became Scarborough &
Sou (John Scarborough), John Scarborough succeeded to the
business in 1888, and continues the same to the present date;
interested also in the grocery business for years ; M. M. Cavanaugh
succeeding to the grocery business at the old stand, corner of
Eighth street and Broadway ; Messrs. Scarborough, Boss Andrews,
William Hollands and Forsyth were some of the most prominent
business men in this section, and representatives of their families
now living in the city are identified with its business, political,
religious and social problems, as they exist to-day.
Michael Kelly Hose Company No. 2 organized in 1870. Named
after a prominent politician always interested in anything per-
taining to the fire department. Held every office and as chief
he had no superior. Charter members, J. Costello, D. Anglum,
M. Smith, M. Ryan, J. M. Farrel, J. Clark, J. Keenan, M. Mullen.
Officers, 1870, John Moore; 1871, J. Costello; 1872, D. Anglum;
1873, W. F. Smith; 1874, J. Keenan; 1875, J. Moore; 1876, J.
Clark; 1877, 1878, 1879, 1880, M. Ryan; 1881, 1882, M. Mullen;
1883, J. Farrel; 1884, J. E. Farrel; 1885, 1886, J. Boyland;
1887, 1888, 1889, 1890, W. H. Parker; 1891, 1892, 1893, 1894,
W. H. Daubney; 1895, 1896, 1897, 1898, J. Welsh; 1899, 1900,
Lester W. Coffee; 1901, 1902, L. W. Cusick; 1903, 1904, J.
Lally; 1905, 1906, J. Parker; 1907, D. Smith; 1908, D. Carhart;
1909, 1910, Thomas Horan. The company has always taken an
interest in fire matters and have rendered efficient aid when called
to respond for duty. Social features in the way of balls or ban-
quets never had any fascination for the members of this company.
Their records are blind in regard to same although they have
enjoyed some in days gone by. They are credited with one held
November 11 in Knights of Columbus Hall, 1907. It was well
attended. The proceeds procured them their uniforms. An out-
ing in 1898 to Baerena Park afforded recreation to members and
guests. A piano graces their parlor, and as many of the young
men are fine musicians an evening of enjoyment can be had by
those that visit the company.
Evening Star Social Club organized about 1870, their enter-
tainments being held in the old Tremont Hotel, at that time Mrs.
Mary A. Greenman, proprietor. The unanimity of the members
enabled them to so perfect their arrangements that an evening of
enjoyment by those attending always developed. It was the last
regular organized club that held forth in the old hotel, disbanding
in 1872. Officers and members: First president, Thomas Jenks;
last president, F. Terrell ; Isaac LeRoy, Thomas F. Toomey,
Thomas Oates, Ed. Nally, Thomas Jenks, James F. Connell
Frank Keis, from Germany in 1862. Established the grocery
and provision business in 1870 at the southwest corner of Four-
teenth street and Fourth avenue. Removed in 1885 to the oppo-
site corner, 40 Fourteenth street. He died December, 1901, his
sons, Joseph and Albert, succeeding their father, who left them
a business built on a solid foundation secured through industry
and perseverance. Under the new management, from the experi-
ence acquired during their clerkship with him, the continued suc-
cess of the firm is assured.
S. J. Gleason Hook and Ladder Company No. 1 organized 1871.
Named after a prominent young man of the village, fair-minded,
liberal, and whose presence at all social gatherings added to the
pleasures of the same. Charter members, William Chalou, Charles
McOmber, James Crummy, Isaac LeRoy. Officers, 1871 to 1879,
William Chalou; 1879 to 1881, James Crummy; 1881 to 1883,
Isaac ReRoy; 1883 to 1892, J. D. Maloney; 1892 to 1895, P.
Larkins; 1895 to 1898, J. O'Brien; 1898, J. F. Connell; 1899,
J. F. McLoughlin; 1900, Joseph Otterson; 1901 to 1905, J. F.
McLoughlin; 1905 and 1906, Thomas F. Mehan; 1907 to 1910,
J. F. Connell; 1910, Nicholas T. Maloney. From the first forma-
tion of this company they have exhibited a lively interest in all
matters (firemanic and social) appertaining to an organization of
like character. They were uniformed within three months after
organization. They have responded to all calls for duty with
promptness, and their services have been many times of value to
property holders, while said service (except paid employees) has
been rendered as volunteer firemen without any compensation
(like others) except the pleasure derived from each other's society,
and the enjoyment derived from that association, and in entertain-
ing brother firemen and friends. These entertainments have been
recherche and frequent. Their first appearance was September 25,
1872, in the parade of the Fire Department of the village, the
only one held in twelve years. Their presence added dignity to
the occasion, and their co-operation helped make it a success. Their
first excursion was to Newark, 1ST. J. I read from the invitation
received the following items: William Chalou, captain; Paul Jef-
ferson, assistant; Robert A. Smith, vice president; James Crum-
mey, treasurer ; J. H. Higginson, Martin R. Harris, T. A. O'Her-
ron, president and secretary of the company, a committee of ar-
rangements. Assessment fifteen dollars. Doring's full band of
twenty-five pieces. Returning by Day Line. In 1874 they formed
the escort to Trojan Hook and Ladder Company of Troy, and
their guests, the Ethan Aliens of Burlington, Vt., from Congress
street bridge to the United States arsenal grounds, returning to
the company's rooms where an elaborate luncheon awaited their
guests. This impromptu affair was followed on January 14, 1875,
by a grand promenade concert and ball held in Union Place Hall.
The decorations of the hall were flattering to the taste displayed
by the members as artists. The costliness of, and yet the sim-
plicity of the dresses worn by the ladies present added to their
natural beauty and enhanced the already magnificent surround-
ings, while strains of music, floating through the air, emanating
from Doring's Band, enabled the guests to trip the light fantastic
toe with ease and comfort. As athletes they are the banner com-
pany through the splendid work performed by the company's base-
ball team when they won the pennant and became champions of
Albany and Rensselaer counties in 1888. Other excursions, recep-
tions and banquets could be named but the above is enough to
show the status of the company. Ab Initio.
One of the largest and finest parades of the West Troy Fire De-
partment occurred September 25, 1872. Chief Engineer James
T. Myers ; first assistant, John Robinson ; second assistant, Dennis
The James Roy Engine Co. ISTo. 1. Guests, Washington Volun-
teers, Troy ; G. Y. Learned Company, of Pittsfield ; visiting chiefs,
J. McQuade, Coleman, Mason, Green, Ellis, Moore, Ingram,
White, and other out-of-town guests. Captain, George H. Years-
ley. An elaborate banquet held in their house was rendered more
so from the fact that family acquaintances of Chief Myers, sixty
lady friends, not one having any member connected with the de-
partment presented him with as many baskets containing cakes,
confections, bonbons and fruits of all kinds. The same were duly
acknowledged at the time and Steward Adams saw to it that the
company's tables were greatly improved in apearance by their
addition. Sullivan's Band headed the company on parade and
rendered selections during the entertainment. Hooker McKeon,
of Volunteers, headed that company.
James Duffy Steamer Company No. 2. The guests of this
company were W. B. White Steamer Company, Gage & Klein's
Band. With a delegation of prominent citizens, Judge Grogan
and former officers of the company, Captain Horan in command.
The menu served to their guests was of that character that would
surprise an epicure, all the delicacies of the season in abundance
being served in their rooms, and so decorated to give the idea of an
up-to-date hotel dining room. Songs, speeches and jokes enlivened
the occasion while Gage's band put the finishing touch to the
Michael Kelly Hose Company No. 2. Guests, Hitchcock Hose
Company. Captain, G. Landry. Their entertainment for their
guests was also held in their parlors. Ex-Chief Kelly presided.
The good things soon disappeared owing to the fact that the
march had created an appetite unusual with firemen, but the
supply was equal to the demand. Cromwell's Band added on this
occasion to their reputation as first class musicians. Foreman,
S. J. Gleason Hook and Ladder Company. Guests, Protection
Steamer No. 1, King's Band; A. A. Van Wort Company, Hitch-
cock's Band. They held their banquet in Union Place Hall. They
surprised their numerous guests by the splendid layout. The
tables were beautifully trimmed, and the hall had an inviting
appearance. The tables were occupied by a pig here and a turkey
there, while ducks, chickens and squirrels were added to the dis-
play. Captain, William Chalou. Academy Band done themselves
proud on this occasion.
Oswald Hose Company No. 1. The guests were the J. Fox
Steamer Company No. 2, Captain C. Jones; A. J. Whipple
Steamer, Captain N. W. Vaughn. Other guests from Trojan
Hook and Ladder Company of Troy, city officials from Albany
and Lansingburgh. To describe the banquet this company pro-
vided for their guests is unnecessary. Their motto, " Nothing to
good for our friends," was exemplified as all became seated at the
tables set in the spacious dining room of the Collins House. Cap-
tain, George Hill. Doring's Band of twenty-five pieces, the peer
Conquerer Engine No. 3 and guests; Camp McNamara, Dr.
John P. Witbeck and Charles Moore in carriage; G. B. Mosher
Fire Brigade, Captain LeRoy ; G. B. Mosher, R. S. Lobdell, C. L.
McArthur, J. I. Russell, President Terrence Cummings, Samuel
Stover and trustees.
Not a cigar smoked in line. Not a man left it on the march.
The ladies on Washington street furnished lemonade as the parade
Braman, Waters W., born in Troy, N. Y., April 20, 1840;
became a resident of West Troy, shortly after the close of the
Civil War, and here married Margaret J. Getty, the result of
which marriage was ten children, six of whom are now living.
In the spring of 1891, Mr. Braman and family, with the excep-
tion of one son, removed to Three Rivers, Province of Quebec,
Canada, where he was engaged in the manufacture of lumber,
and at which place he died December 8, 1893. During Mr.
Braman's early life he was associated with his uncle, Waters W.
Whipple, in the lumber business in this village, but being patriotic,
and he having attained his majority, enlisted on December 7,
1861, as First Lieutenant in Company C, Ninety-third Regiment,
New York Volunteers, and went to the front, where he served
thirty-seven months, being in twenty-eight engagements, and was
discharged at the close of the war, on January 21, 1865. When
he was discharged from service he was captain of Company H, of
the same regiment, with rank of brevet major; he was also tendered
a commission as captain in the army, but declined the honor pre-
ferring to go back to business. He did return to his chosen busi-
ness, that of lumber, and soon joined a partnership consisting of
Rousseau & Braman, which firm conducted their business for some
years in this village, and until the lumber famine struck the
village, when said firm dissolved. After that and for many years
he was manager of the old Kerslake mill, on Broadway, and con-
tinued with it until it closed up shortly after the death of the
owner, James Kerslake. Mr. Braman was honored by his fellow
citizens on several occasions, they having once elected him as a
village trustee, and in 1874, 1875, 1878 and 1879 elected him
as member of Assembly from the Fourth Assembly district of
Albany county. While he was a member of the Assembly, he
served on the committee of removal when the change was made
from the old capitol to the new. He also served as State senator
during the years 1880 and 1881, representing therein the seven-
teenth district. For more than twenty-five years he was a Re-
publican leader in Albany county, was several times a delegate
to State and National conventions, and on one occasion he was
tendered the nomination for Lieutenant-Governor, but declined.
At the time of a great Republican gathering at the Fair Grounds
on the Troy road, he presided and introduced the principal
speaker, James G. Blaine. He was a member of Evening Star
Lodge No. 75, F. & A. M., of Post No. 5, G. A. R., of the Grant
club of Albany, and of the Watervliet club. He was a fearless,
upright, and a much respected citizen.
Young Peoples' Social, TJ. P. Hall. J. F. Patterson, E. F. Koy,
J. L. Haswell, committee.
Ortus Club Social, at Union Place Hall, had a large member-
ship. Their orders of dancing well selected; their committee of
arrangements popular and courteous. Haverlock Chalou, presi-
dent ; J. E. Garrahan, chairman ; W. H. Hennessy, treasurer.
At Maclntyre's picnic, on fair grounds, in 1885, Raymond
Wight ran ten miles in one hour and seven minutes on a bet.
Patrick Scully and Teddy Daily, starter and referee.
David Anderson, a prominent business man, died January 5.
Duffy third annual ball, at Union Place Hall, January 6.
Laurel Lodge, I. O. O. F., mammoth sleigh ride to Clifton Park.
Young Men's Literary Association ball at Union Place Hall,
March 17, 1871.
Duffy Steamer Co., with chief engineer and assistant, sent in
their resignation, because the trustees refused to increase the
salary of their engineer. It was accepted, April 12.
Large fire on Green Island. Lumber yards belonging to firms
in West Troy, below Green Island bridge, and coal sheds above.
Troy and West Troy departments were busy nearly two days. It
commenced on Sunday in 1871.
West Troy and Troy Bridge Co. Organized April 23, 1872.
Completed October, 1874. First load over by George Bates'
teams with 100 tons of pig iron to test its strength. The structural
timbers were carried away at the west approach in the fall of '72,
and the eastern span fell in 1873. Trojan H. & L. Co., with their
guests, were the first company to cross the bridge, on their way to
visit the Watervliet Arsenal. Ethan Allen Co., of Burlington, Vt.,
Samuel Waterman ; lumber dealer. Under no obligation to do
so, paid the expenses of the funeral of a boy that was killed by
falling off a pile of lumber in his yard. Village president 1855
Francis Disabel, merchant — an old settler — died October,
In October, 1872, what was known as the " widows' fire " oc-
curred near the Arsenal wall. ,Mrs. Jackson, a visitor from
Lansingburg, Mrs. Andrews and Mrs. Hursh, all widows, were
burned out. Mrs. Andrews was the only one insured. The same
day a Widow Schuyler, living in the lower part of the village, was
also burned out.
July 1, 1872. Concert at Baptist church; Prof. Gill in charge.
Miss Cressy sang " The Flower Girl." Mrs. Kennedy and others
also sang. Prof. Conway, pianist. Rev. M. Gurley, pastor.
Perry Robinson, Stephen Shannahan, J. R. Levings, excise com-
missioners of the village, were fined $250 each by the Supreme
Court, for paying themselves their commission out of moneys col-
lected. They should have paid the money to the treasurer and
drawn pay through the proper channel.
Andrew Alexander, a well known banker, real estate and insur-
ance agent, met with an accident causing his death, June 14, 1875.
Isaac G. Braman (son of W. W. B.). Born in the village, edu-
cated in the schools of the village, graduate of a business college
and from boyhood a popular young man, being an expert steno-
grapher, and having acquired considerable influence in his ward,
he entered into politics, and increasing the same became a can-
didate for mayor of the city, but withdrew in the interest of peace
and harmony. He held the position of stenographer under
Governor Levi P. Morton in 1895. He is well posted in the
political situation of his own city as well as of the county. At
present he holds the position of stenographer of the County Court
of the county of Albany.
Steamboat City of Troy built in 1876.
Elias Vanderlip; believed to be the first undertaker to settle in
Gibbonsville. When the mournful event required his services,
he proceeded with dispatch, but in a manner that showed his sym-
pathy for the bereaved family. His wife Nancie, always with
motherly care, superintended on all like occasions the duties that
were required ; was beloved by all, and both were sincerely mourned
when they passed away. The old-time custom of turning the
looking-glass to the wall was never omitted by Mother Nancie
Vanderlip. Mr. Vanderlip died in 1880.
Terrence Cummings; to West Troy in the 40's. Grocery and
stabling, in 1855, located corner Twenty-fifth street and Whitehall
street (Second avenue). Boat trade being quite heavy at that
time, later he removed to the corner of Fourth avenue and Twenty-
third street. At one time prominent in politics, taking an active
part in all affairs pertaining to the village; president of same in
1869, 1872 and 1873 ; 1885 and 1886 supervisor of the town of
Watervliet. A citizen respected by all. His death occurred
Protection Hose Co. No. 4. The first meeting of the young men
of the Fourth toward organization of the company was held in the
office of Justice John McDonough, in 1876, Wights building,
Broadway. John McBain elected chairman. Bernard Pierce,
first captain ; F. O. Potter, treasurer, Emerson Jones, assistant.
Charter members: John McBain, Sr., F. O. Potter, George
Garfield, John Berry, Benjamin Dyer, F. W. Phillips, Charles
Whipple, Geo. Clark, H. Berger, Henry Retalick, B. Pierce, Peter
Glynn, D. Seabring, Frank Whipple, Emerson Jones.
Officers : 1878, the common council confirmed the organization;
captain, F. O. Potter; 1879, Geo. Garfield; 1880, John Berry;
1881, Geo. Garfield; 1882, Benj. Dyer; 1883, Wm. Rock; 1884,
Geo. Clark; 1885, Wm. Eock; 1886 and 1887, F. W. Phillips;
1888, F. W. Phillips; 1889, 1890 and 1891, Warren Balou;
1892, Geo. Phillips; 1893, 1894, 1895, F. W. Phillips; 1896 and
1897, R. T. Williams; 1898, S. M. Richards; 1899, G. R.
Hutchinson; 1900 and 1901, H. Davenport; 1902 and 1903,
G. H. Mitchell; 1904, T. Jones; 1906, H. B. Hodgman; 1907,
J. Berry; 1908 and 1909, Jas. Shannon; 1910, C. T. Burton.
James Grattan, driver — one who is worthy of the position.
His care and attention to details connected with it, and his love for
and kindness to dumb animals is proverbial.
The social features of the company have been mostly local, con-
sisting of luncheons served from time to time to home guests and
some entertainments and receptions to nearby companies. The
first banquet was held in their new house, east side of Third
avenue, north of Twenty-third street. President John McBain,
Sr., addressed the members, others followed with congratulations
on the success of the cosy organization, and then all seated them-
selves at the banquet table. The menu was a surprise; the good
things were there, and after they has disappeared songs and toasts
followed. The occasion is remembered by only a small number.
Excursions abroad have been limited in number. Their noted
one occurred in 1889. August 27 they left by boat and on
August 29 the Seamstress Engine Co., of the Wheeler & Wilson
Mfg. Co.'s fire department, of Bridgeport, Conn., received them,
and no heartier reception was ever accorded to any body or com-
pany of firemen than they experienced. Two days, the 30th and
31st, added another ovation tendered them by the Volunteer Asso-
ciation and the Sons of Volunteers of New Haven. Nothing was
left undone by the firemen and also by the citizens of both cities
that would add to the pleasure or comfort of their guests, and the
occasion, at least to the visiting company, would have had double
the prestige if the committee of arrangements had not overlooked
the necessity of such occasions of inviting some prominent officials
to accompany them to do the honors that are always expected on
all like occasions. House burned February 23, 1884.
West Troy Water Works organized. Directors: George R.
Meneely, John Reiley, William B. Williams, Richard S. Lobdell,
Jessie C. Dayton.
Crowner & Waterman; dry goods. Removed from old stand to
Union Place Hall building. First firm to occupy same in 1852.
Edward Curren; a prominent old-time Fourth warder; an all-
around good fellow. Member of Assembly in 1877 and 1878.
Thomas Ballard; superintendent in W. S. F. Went to Pitts-
burgh. Superintendent of Singer Sewing Machine Co. for years.
Owner of some fast horses.
F. S. Ayers; one of the first to engage in the shoe business in
West Troy. A reliable merchant, and carried a stock that would
compete in those days with any in this section, and taking into
consideration the large stock carried by another merchant, Thomas
Gunsalus, there are no concerns in the same line of business in
Watervliet to-day that equals them.
Joseph M. Haswell ; a lumber merchant. Connected at different
periods with various financial, banking, and other business interests
in the village. Always considerate of the feelings of those in
trouble, generous, his daily contributions to those (societies and
others) that were worthy being unusually large. Quiet, unassum-
ing, and a Christian, without cant or hypocrisy, respected by all,
missed from the business world, and mourned by a large circle of
friends and his immediate family when he passed to his home
beyond. He died on his way home in his carriage, his faithful
horse following the road to his residence; the sad event occurring
John Perrigo; liveryman, contractor (masonry work). First
class work or none was his motto, and during his whole life he
conscientiously lived up to the same. Buildings standing to-day
are evidences of his workmanship.
There may be those living to-day that remember Mr. Cross, and
his daughter, who taught school in the Third ward schoolhouse
that burned some years later. His daughters were accomplished
musicians and gave lessons on the guitar.
Volunteer Hose Co. No. 2. Organized in 1876 ; in an inde-
pendent condition for two years under the foremanship of John
H. Hodgman, who was born in the village of Gibbonsville and was
a merchant tailor for years ; an old-time fireman, well known and
popular in his day.
John A. King; from England (Oxford) in 1830; engineer.
With Andrew Meneely, Rousseau & Easton, Albert Richards, and
at one time employed at the United States Arsenal. An expert in
his line, had the confidence of his employers and the respect of the
citizens. Died in 1888.
Abram A. King (son) ; also a machinist. At present employed
at the Arsenal. A Mason since 1860. Well known. Charter
member of Oswald Hose Co. and popular with his associates.
Rousseau & Harrington mill burned March 15, 1886.
Harrington box factory burned in 1889.
Seymour chair factory partly burned in 1889.
Thomas F. McLoughlin; from Boston in 1869. In 1884, with
John Langan, wholesale liquor business, until 1892, when the
co-partnership with his brother, John J. McLoughlin, was formed,
and the wholesale wine and liquor business was established at
1621 Broadway at that date. The fact that older firms had the
prestige did not deter them from entering the arena of competition,
but with a well assorted stock of goods in their line displayed at
their opening, added to their previous reputation as men of char-
acter, they soon received recognition from those that appreciated
honorable business methods and fair treatment. That, to-day, has
secured for them a class of customers that enables them to have a
contented mind, with a business built upon a solid basis. Thomas
F. McLoughlin, being appointed in 1909 as chamberlain of the
city of Watervliet, a position he is well adapted to fill — being an
expert accountant — of necessity leaves his brother, John J., to
oversee the business of the firm during office hours. The disposi-
tions of both members of the firm, while seeking the advance of
their business, are in accord with all honorable methods to improve
the status of the city, and are at all times sociable and friendly.
Rev. Ensign Stover ; one of the most noted and eloquent divines
connected with the Methodist denomination. His sermons were
most forceful and convincing. He was pastor of the Washington
Street Methodist Episcopal Church in 1856 and 1857, and later
held a pastorate with the Ohio Street M. E. Church. The monu-
ment that exists to perpetuate his name consists of a life's labor
of love in the interest of humanity, recorded by the angels above,
and remembered only by those that were contemporary with him.
Died in the 70's.
Samuel Stover (brother) ; an early resident of West Troy. An
attorney with a State reputation. Educated for the ministry, but
selected the profession of a lawyer as his life work, and became
successful to a marked degree. As a public speaker he was always
in demand, and had the ability to cause a laugh or bring a tear-
drop on the cheek of his listeners. As an after dinner speaker he
was fanciful and witty, often advancing an idea that, though sur-
prising, created a fund of amusement for those present. He was
one of the four noted attorneys that defended Henrietta Robinson,
the Veiled Murderess. His death', which occurred in 1873, left a
vacancy in the ranks of the profession, and lessened the number of
Henry E. Eckert located in and established his business as a
jeweler at No. 1520 Broadway, West Troy, in 1869; an optical
and repairing department is also one of his specialties. He has
demonstrated to the careful observer that by a well-selected assort-
ment of goods, so artistically arranged as to attract attention;
that by perseverance and industry coupled with straightforward
honest statements in regard to the quality of goods selected and
purchased by customers, even though Troy is the objective point
to many, yet business can be done on this side of the Hudson with
pleasure, satisfaction and profit. It is one establishment, at least,
that citizens can be proud of. Clocks, watches and bric-a-brac
of many varieties are shown; diamonds and jewels of dazzling
beauty, at less than New York figures; New Year's, Christmas,
Easter, wedding and other presents in as large variety as can be
found in most any city.
H. J. Eckert (son), well-known and prominent in business
circles, has a State reputation as an artistic engraver and an
optician of large experience, enabling him to do justice to his
patrons. Socially inclined, with a friendly word to all with whom
he may come in contact.
Charles M. Stover (son of Samuel Stover), born in West Troy;
received an academic education; had many of the characteristics
of his father ; popular among his associates ; superintendent of the
Waterworks Company some years. Passed away in 1899.
Henry Le Roy, one of the many merchants of the old village
whose business qualifications secured for him a large patronage.
His grocery, Boynton & Batcheldor's old stand, Broadway and
Fourteenth street, always well stocked, was the busy corner for
years. Prominent in business circles, his demise in 1878 was
sincerely mourned by those that knew him.
Isaac Le Roy (son), like his father, was well known; a Dem-
ocratic poltician of influence ; held the office of Watervliet town
clerk four years. Charter member of Gleason Hook and Ladder
Company, and at present proprietor of a first-class laundry. A
citizen of the times.
James McKeever established the grocery business in 1880 on
the opposite corner of his present place, No. 600 Sixth avenue
and Fourteenth street, near the place where the first temperance
meeting was held in 1835, thus giving the name of Temperance
Hill to the locality. Thirty dwellings comprised the settlement
at that date west of the canal, south of Ferry (Fourteenth) street.
An enterprising and progressive merchant. Mr. McKeever is
well known throughout the city, and can be numbered as one of
the head lights connected with the mercantile interests of the city.
E. A. La Page, located in 1874 ; contractor, carpenter and
builder, and, in addition, under the firm name of E. A. La Page &
Son, established the grocery and provision business, corner Fifth
avenue and Fourteenth street. As business increased, for con-
venience of patrons, they added delivery wagons. A progressive
firm, carrying a stock of merchandise equal to the demand.
The \V. B. Tafft Pharmacy, corner of Fifth avenue and Four-
teenth street, supplied a long-felt necessity in that locality. Mr.
Tafft came to West Troy in 1898 with a well-assorted stock of
drugs, medicines and other lines of goods pertaining to the busi-
ness. He has succeeded in holding a fair amount of trade. A
fine soda fountain is a feature of the establishment.
Cornelius Fogarty, resided in West Troy since 1870. Promi-
nent in business circles. Believes in business and economical
methods in the transactions of municipal affairs.
W T iliiam F. Parker, of the firm of Parker Bros., undertakers.
Born in 1860. Established the business in 1881. Through
energy and perseverance, coupled with a quiet, courteous manner
and pleasing address, has won for the firm the good will of the
community, and established a business in his line second to none
in this section. He is a politician of influence, using the prestige
he has with his party (Democratic) to better the political standing
of the same, and the business interests of his home city. A citizen
of energy, character and probity, whose friendship once gained is
Joseph F. Parker (brother), member of the firm, has charge
of the firm's indoor business, the careful supervision of same
enables the firm to attend all calls for services promptly. The
firm stands in the front rank of the business world.
Levi M. Leitzell, resident of the Ninth ward. Engaged in the
grocery business for years, always carrying a stock of goods that
enabled him to fill any and all orders promptly. Identified with
the interests of the city, and in accord with every movement that
tends to advance the same. His new store on Twenty-third street,
opposite his old stand, adds to the appearance of the surroundings.
The fiting of the inside are of that character that enables him to
display goods to the best possible advantage, with an eye to the
quick serving of patrons, one of the main points to consider in
conducting a large business.
Charles Kafka, at one time proprietor of the Collins House,
but through illness he was forced to sell and retire from a business
life that had been long and varied. He died in 1904.
Watervliet High School Mothers' Club.
With anxious eyes and tender hands
She guides us on,
From youth to manhood's hour.
Mother's duty, never done
'Till the grave it closes o'er her.
May the problems that this and other clubs have in view for
the improvement of outdoor conditions of the children of the city
materialize through the generous support of our citizens, and may
the children be taught to understand the meaning of this endeavor
on the part of the associations, and appreciation of the same will
Thomas Mclntyre Hose Company No. 3, organized 1873.
Charter Members: Andrew Connors, M. McQuade, Patrick
Manning, Isaac Fadden, Nicholas Kirker, Jas. Trimble, Thos.
Mclntyre, T. Anderson.
Foremen: 1873, Andrew Connors; 1876, J. Burk; 1877,
M. McQuade; 1879, Patrick Manning; 1881, Isaac N. Fadden,
Thos. J. Mclntyre.
Some of the Members: Thos. J. Mclntyre, W. Hatch, Thos.
Whitmarsh, Lawrence Horan, Mathew Horan.
In 1883 this company was reorganized. Meetings held in the
Excelsior Club room, and continued the name of the Thos.
Mclntyre Hose Company No. 3.
Wm. Angus, president ; F. A. Groner, vice-president ; J. 0. Wil-
son, secretary; 1883, T. J. Mclntyre, captain; 1886, Ed Bightley;
1886, J. Brierton, Chas. B. Groner, F. A. Groner, C. M. Angus,
Fred Stephens, A. Van Leuven, John Ross. Captain T. J. Mcln-
tyre's death occurred in .1884. Funeral attended by the fire
department. Soon after F. A. Groner's death occurred.
Other Members : IT. A. Laughlin, E. G. Gardner, Wm. Bing-
ham, Jas. Brierton, Sam'l N oiler, John Reiley, Henry Egan. Jos.
Eagan, Vivian Grey, Jas. Connors, Ed Larkins, Wm. Dailey, John
Downey, R. T. Trimble.
Captains: 1890, Chas. Lawler; 1894, C. M. Angus; 1898,
J. Fadden; 1900, S. D. Kennedy; 1902, J. Egan; 1909, Albert
Jones; 1910, Nicholas Angus.
The company has always been active in fire duty. Its social
features many and varied. November 25, 1883, the first enter-
tainment was held in St. Bridget's Hall. Moonlight excursion in
1884. At a fair held in Union Place Hall in 1885 they won the
prize of a trumpet. Picnics, balls and parades followed each year.
The members of the company have been represented in the munici-
pal affairs of the village and city from the First ward. T. J.
Mclntyre, Chas. Angus, John Thompson, Thos. Mclntyre, D.
Feary, L. Horan, Jas. Horan, are some of the noted members.
Isaac N. Fadden is the present alderman.
In 1887 receiving new uniforms they appeared in line of parade
of Troy Fire Department, August 17, 1887.
Martin Tierney Engine Company No. 3, organized in 1873.
Charter Members: G. H. Taylor, J. Anderson, Wm. Trimble,
W. Bingham, John Sherwood, J. Ellis.
Captains: 1873, G. H. Taylor; 1876, Wm. Trimble; 1879 and
1880, William Bingham; 1878, Wm. Quirk.
The members of this company in 1873 proceeded to Troy
for the purpose of bringing the new engine home. They were
entertained by the Washington Volunteers, and returned and
housed the apparatus ready to respond to duty. The company is
out of commission, the engine is yet owned by the city, and used
when necessity calls.
Third Ward Schoolhouse, Owasco street and Craig's lumber
yard, burned November 21, 1873.
Fire at Ohio and Ontario streets September 5, 1873: Wood
yard, David Dyer, J. Connors, Terrence Cummings, Merrit Potter,
Hiram Nash, Jas. Flannagan, Thos. Bobbins (residences and
shops). Only the assistance of the Troy Fire Department pre-
vented a more disastrous conflagration. The village hose being in
a deplorable condition.
Edward J. Sprung, former resident of West Troy. At one
time connected with the constabulary of Troy previous to the
organization of the police in 1865, and somewhat noted as a
detective. Proprietor of a hotel in Saratoga, and in 1884 formed
a co-partnership with R. A. Duckrow. The firm name being
Sprung & Duckrow, machinery brokers and dealers, with office
in Troy, in N. M. Boardman building; storehouses at West Troy.
Mr. Sprung died in 1895, at his death the junior member, Bich-
ard A. Duckrow, assumed the business and still continues the
same, with office at former location.
Mr. Sprung had a large acquaintance throughout the State;
was well liked for the many good qualities he possessed, and his
demise was sincerely regretted by many.
Miss Lydia Hull, a well-known and esteemed young lady, was
killed July 22, 1862, on the new steam ferry boat at the landing,
foot of what is now Sixteenth street, being struck by some timbers
while standing by the railing as the boat was entering the slip.
The company settled with her mother for something near $2,000.
Shortly after Dr. Jas. Thorn was injured. Horse boat engineers
did not understand how to handle a boat propelled by steam, and
it took some time to put the ferry under the new regime in first-
class running order.
Captain Bichard Van Decar, one of the old-time captains of
Troy line of steamers. Popular with the traveling public. Died
July 20, 1880.
Richard Van Decar, 2d, the well-known captain of the Bell
Horton. Was at different times the trusted employee of the Aus-
tin, Schuyler & Betts and Eobinson lines. Member of Rip &
Jas. Roy Steamer Company, and always social and friendly.
Saline Tetrault and family, from Canada in 1880. Margaret
Mary (wife) established the bakery business on Twenty-fifth
street. Her husband's demise occurred in 1885. Mrs. Tetrault
continued the business until 1886, placing the business under
the control of her sons, Isaiah and Joseph Tetrault. In 1890
Joseph withdrew; Isaiah, the senior member, continuing, adding
groceries and provisions in connection with the bakery. He is
also identified with the National Biscuit Company, having been
connected with that firm for eighteen years. Success has crowned
their effort and a lucrative business is the result, their patrons
appreciate their method of doing business, receiving courteous
treatment on all occasions. Identified with the church (Sacred
Heart of Mary), and interested in all movements to promote its
Mrs. Margaret Mary Tetrault established the drygoods business
in 1886, next door south of the grocery, assisted by her daughter,
Jennie, continuing until her daughter's marriage in 1894 to
E. De Rouseau, of Troy. In 1895 Mrs. Tetrault retired and her
daughters, Albina and Amelia, purchased the business. In 1906
the sisters built the fine brick building, No. 2434 Third avenue,
and opened the largest, and in fact, the only first-class drygoods
establishment to be found in the city. The members of this firm
hold the palm for executive ability, and are one of the Twentieth
century up-to-date firms in all business methods, believing that
success is only attained through nerve, perseverance and square
dealing. The family is prominent in social circles and church
affairs. Celia Tetrault married Matthew A. McGrath, a promi-
nent business man of the city.
John E. Glass, druggist, located in the McGuire building, on
Twenty-third street in 1858. Removed to the Wight building,
corner Broadway and Twenty-third street, in 1860. In 1862 the
firm was Glass & Hutchinson; Mr. Hutchinson retired in 1866.
In 1885 Mr. John McBain became a partner, the firm name being
Glass & McBain. Later Mr. Glass' son Edwin was admitted as
a partner, the firm name being J. E. Glass & Co. Mr. Glass
died in 1885. The firm name being changed to J. E. Glass' Son
& McBain. Mr. McBain withdrew in 1896 and Edwin E. Glass
continues the business at the old stand. He held the office of
supervisor from 1896 to 1898. John E. Glass had the confidence
of his business associates. He believed in combining pleasure
with business, his principal recreation being that of hunting, and
with congenial companions always took delight in outings that
were frequent. Edwin G. Glass in continuing the business has
added largely to former business by business methods and cordial
greeting to patrons. A lover and owner of some finely-bred
horses, and his summer outings, when business permits, consists
of drives throughout the county behind one of his pets. He is
ably assisted by Mrs. Glass, who for years, being an expert, has
had charge of the books of the concern, and, considering the vol-
ume of business done is no small item to consider.
John McBain, resident of Colonie, received his education in the
schools of this section. In 1861 and 1862 he made his first
attempt to earn a dollar as assistant collector for Mr. Owens at
the old toll-gate, then standing on the Cohoes road. The next
three years he was employed by the Warner Lime and Cement
Company driving team. In 1866 held clerkship with J. E. Glass,
and in 1868 was employed by the Schenectady Pipe Works. In
1872 he again resumed his old position as a drug clerk, and in
1885 became a member of the firm, and continued as such through-
out its different changes until his retirement, the same occurring
in 1896. To the teaming business in which he had previously
been engaged, he added the coal, wood, lime, cement and sewer
pipe business, and at present he is largely engaged in the same.
From a small beginning he has steadily advanced and now occupies
a prominent position as a merchant of the city. Mr. McBain is
also well-known and recognized throughout the county as a poli-
tician of influence, having been elected, and, at different times
appointed to offices of responsibility by town, county and State,
where judgment, executive ability and honesty were the requisites
to entitle the candidate to the honor.
Thomas Barker and Elizabeth Barker with their son, William,
and daughter, Mary E. Barker, came to West Troy in 1848, and,
being a blacksmith, built a shop north side of Twenty-third street,
on the lot now occupied by Mr. Dunn's barber shop. Soon after
opened a grocery store in the Lobdell block. His wife also con-
ducting the millinery business. Prominent members of the Ohio
Street Methodist Church, and identified with every religious
movement connected therewith, and evangelical in their belief,
became members of the Troy Praying Band, and for years labored
in the vineyard of the Master for the uplifting of humanity.
Respected and loved they passed from their earthly labors, leaving
a record of love for, and a life-long devotion to, the cause of
religion. Mr. Barker died in 1900. Mrs. Barker died in 1898.
William Barker, Jr. (son), educated in the village schools.
August 6, 1862, enlisted in Company H, Seventh New York
Heavy Artillery, Meneely Guards, as private, discharged June 16,
1865, as sergeant. On returning home he secured a position with
the firm of Bennett, Strickland & Fellows, and eventually was
promoted to the position of head cutter. He resigned and accepted
the position of head cutter with the Cluett concern. Later became
manager and later proprietor of the collar firm now designated as
The William Barker Company, the position attained in business
circles and the prosperity that has followed his early endeavor to
gain a foothold can be ascribed to the remembrance of the advice
he had received and the precepts set before him by kind parents
in youthful days, and the tenacity with which he has clung to same
in after years. The love he had for family, the pride he had in
the home of his adoption is forcibly impressed in the mind of those
who view the substantial mercantile monument to assist in per-
petuating and retaining the collar industry in this section, adding
as it does the only plant of its kind in the city, and the first
industry established by one raised in the old village, gaining the
means through his own exertions. The building was erected in
William Barker, Jr., educated in the schools of Watervliet
and Albany. January 1, 1890, entered the collar business, becom-
ing member of the William Barker Company in 1899. William
Barker, Sr., president ; William Barker, Jr., secretary and treas-
urer. The firm have salesrooms in New York, Chicago, Boston
and other places. Their traveling salesmen cover a large territory,
and The Barker Brand (trademark) being evidence of superior
goods and workmanship, insures a healthy and increasing trade.
George H. Kimberly (son of Henry), born in 1837. Educated
in the public schools of the village. Served clerkship in the grocery
and provision business at the old store, corner of Nineteenth street
and Broadway, and became identified with the business as pro-
prietor for five years. Engaged in the manufacture of bells in
Troy, under the firm name of Meneely & Kimberly, continuing
the same five years. Later associated with the Meneely Company
(incorporated), and treasurer of the firm. Member of the fire
department twenty years with Protection Engine Company No. 2
(hand). Mr. Kimberly is known as a prominent business man, of
sound judgment and a close observer of matters in general.
Recognizing his obligations as a citizen of his home city, he is at
all times ready, both by voice and means, to advance any project
that will accrue to the city's interest ; and can be depended upon to
oppose with the same energy and means the many schemes that
are often advanced, conspicuously for the benefit of the promoters,
to the detriment of the city's welfare.
Charles Kimberly (brother), always popular with his associates,
a favorite in the old Fourth ward ; generous, with a friendly greet-
ing to all. He left the village in 1854, destination unknown, his
fate a mystery. Nearly all of his early associates have passed
Jacob Fratt and Francis Fratt (brothers), butchers and drovers.
Resided in 1840 on Erie street (Second avenue, below Twenty-
first street), in the Horan house. Slaughter house on Ice-house
hill, west of Dry river (Sixteenth street). Well known; associate
of Eben Wiswall, often on hunting trips. In 1846 removed to
Racine, Wis. Francis left for California. Their partnership
continuing. Later the brothers returned, accounting to each other,
both having been successful ; they closed their connections, squared
accounts and Francis returned to San Francisco.
Ashael Gilbert came to West Troy in 1845. Captain of many
sailing vessels from 1839 (then living in West Troy) to 1870.
Representative of the best element of navigators. He knew his
business and was respected by all that knew him. Of a kind dis-
position, generous and true.
Daniel Hipwood came from England in 1853. Ship carpenter,
one of the most expert mechanics in his line of business in this
section. Superintended the building of the famous Burden water-
wheel, and largely employed by other firms on large contracts.
His name in connection with any, guaranteed first-class workman-
ship and material. He possessed the characteristics of the true-
born Englishman and maintained the same in all family affairs.
As a citizen he was a loyal American. His daughter Lydia mar-
ried William Andrews (his first wife). Martha married C. War-
ner. Elizabeth married Capt. J. O. Wood, all prominent men of
Edward Hipwood (son), born and educated in the village. Fol-
lowed the occupation of his father for years, and for thirty years
was the trusted guardian of the grounds of the Jermain estate on
the Albany road. His recreation consisted mostly in fishing, an
expert in that line.
Charles and George Hipwood (sons of E. H.), both educated
in the schools of the village, graduates of the De La Salle Insti-
tute of Troy, and Albany Business College, now occupy responsi-
ble positions with the D. & H. Co. in Albany. Popular with the
young people of Watervliet.
Items of Diffekent Dates.
The longest period from the opening and closing of the canals :
1826, March 27 to December 20, 8 months 24 days; 1853, April
20 to December 20, 8 months.
William Chard, ship carpenter, with his son, Hewitt Chard,
10 years old, came to West Troy from New York in 1824.
Employed in the shipyard known as the Parker yard, it was
owned by Capt. John Silliman. Daniel Parker and also Thos.
Colyer, of Sing Sing, had the building of vessels. Mr. Chard was
Hewitt Chard (son) when eighteen years old, also worked there
at the trade. He was one of the workmen that helped build the
barge John Haswell, scow Kentucky, schooner John Silliman and
Frances Seward and others; also helped calk the floors of Robert
Dunlop's brewery when James Roy was foreman for the concern;
he also worked on one of Mr. Dunlop's barges used to freight down
the river ; the barrels of ale were passed through a tunnel cut from
the brewery under the road to the dock and then placed on board ;
the name of the boat was Scotland. Mr. Chard is yet living and
enjoying good health, having enjoyed the prosperous times of the
past, sees the decline that has taken place in later years, yet enjoys
the evening of his life at the age of eighty-nine in peace and
comfort. Mr. Chard has in his possession in use a pair of hand-
made door hinges taken from the doors of the old Dutch Tavern,
then standing south of the lower locks. He is no doubt the oldest
fireman living in the city, being one of the first members of old
Conqueror Engine Company No. 3.
Steamboat Sunny Side sunk by the Golden Gate in 1875.
Learned & Crawford, contractors, built the lower locks. The
old Dutch tavern, standing on the corner south of the locks, was
burned in 1835. All the beach south of the Arsenal green was
used as fishing ground.
W. H. Wood & Co.'s iron and stove foundry in operation in
1889; J. Treadgill, J. Kirkpatrick, John Chalou, W. C. Durant,
members of the firm, located on Seventh avenue and Sixteenth
street. This section at one time held the stove industry, to-day
there is none left to give employment to the large number of that
class of mechanics that then resided within our borders.
Samuel Wear located in West Troy as a merchant in the grocery
and provision business, corner Fifth avenue and Sixteenth street,
in 1887. Removed to his present location (opposite corner), 409
Sixteenth street, in 1888, a desirable location, in the immediate
vicinity of a large class of citizens that recognize and appreciate
the opportunity to purchase their supplies from a firm that at all
time carries a full line of goods of the best quality obtainable, and
at the lowest market value. Member of the Washington
M. E. Church ; also treasurer of same, and has the confidence and
respect of his large circle of friends.
West Troy Ladies Amateur Association. March, 1870,
Misses Cressey, Osterhout, Durant, Messrs. Hollands, Durant,
Baker, Phelps, Cullen, Dyer. Hollands as Eonan, Eggy Dyer as
Switchel, in wit, jokes, and sarcasm. Anchey, a dandy bartender ;
Miss Cressey as Mrs. Morgan ; Miss Durant as her daughter Mary,
with song " Father, dear father, come home with me now." ; Col.
Baker, hotel keeper. The staging of the play, and the delineation
of the different characters, were equal to the expectation of the
audience that greeted their appearance.
Augustus Vielie & Co., E. A. Flood, S. C. Dermott; iron
foundry. South of the Arsenal, above Fifth street. Now occu-
pied by G. B. Meneely & Co. Later, Augustus Vielie & Son in
1860, Collar & Jones, Collar, Sage & Dunham. C. F. Hall, man-
ager of the old Vielie foundry in 1871. In 1872 the firm was
C. F. Hall & Co. Win. B. Farrell and J. P. Mitchell. It was
closed out about 1876. Mr. Hall opened a bakery some time after
on Twenty-third street. An immense business was done by these
different firms, and many families had to leave the village seeking
employment when the shops shut down.
Ebenezer Jones ; foundry. One of the early settlers of Gibbons-
ville. Three sons. Octavus moved to Chicago with Eansom Valve
Co. Marcus, Haywood and Abbott all dead. Abbott Jones re-
moved to Troy and was connected with the firm of Meneely &
Jones (bells). His two sons, Eobert E. and Abbott H., both living.
Abbott H. Jones occupies the honorable position of district attor-
ney of Eensselaer county, is a prominent member of the Bar Asso-
ciation, popular with a wide circle of acquaintances that in truth
can be actually designated as personal friends.
Ingratitude is often exhibited in personal matters, but never
more in evidence than when the older associates of Eev. 0. H.
Gregory allowed the younger element to intimate to him, in 1870,
that his resignation would be most acceptable.
Levi J. Bibbins; from Trenton, 1ST. J., to West Troy in 1884.
Ex-chief of the volunteer fire department of Trenton; lieutenant
7th Eegt., N. J. Militia; Past Commander of Palestine Com-
mandery of N. J. ; Past Master, Column F. & A. M., N. J. ;
Past N. G., Lodge No. 36, I. O. O. F., Trenton, N. J. Interested
in manufacturing, a representative citizen and well known.
Oliver B. Bibbins (son) ; actor of note. At present holds posi-
tion of interlocutor with the well known minstrel organization of
Al. G. Fields, now on tour.
Levi S. Bibbins (son) ; a prominent young man, with a record
as bookkeeper and accountant. Formerly with Hall, Hartwell &
Co. At present bookkeeper for the National Bank of Watervliet.
George and James Conde ; sons of a former citizen of the village,
an extensive dealer in lumber. The male members of this family
were prominent in business circles, and ready at all times to assist
in any movement for the betterment of general conditions that then
existed, while the female members were leaders in many social and
religious functions held in their day.
James Forsythe, Jr; member of Assembly in 1884. from the
Fourth district. At one time a prominent and also an influential
politician ; at one time engaged in mercantile business ; at present
in the employ of the government at Albany.
Tavern proprietors previous to 1845 : I. Bostwick, Delavan &
Swan, Jonathan Dyer, A. Rundall, II. Twisst, E. Powell, John
Wigatt, Gilbert & Willard, M. Jenks, H. Bagley, J. T. Morrison,
Levinus Lansing, Wallace & Cutting, Dyer & Reynolds, Jas.
Donaldson, George Aldrich, Samuel Segue, Rundall, Sol. Green-
man, Eaton Hitchcock, Nancie Valance, A. Blakely. Saloons:
Moses Hart, Thos. McCormick, Augustus Canton, J. Burrell,
C. Harrod, Ed. Cole. Nearly all groceries were licensed to sell
liquor by measure during the early settlement of the village.
William Daubney; from England to Montreal in 1846, and
from there to Troy with his son William II. Daubney in 1855.
Served in the British Royal Artillery seventeen years, through the
Crimean War. Was an expert swordsman and horseman, and
taught the art to the British nobility. One of the only two
British soldiers that received a pension after becoming a subject
of the United States.
William H. Daubney (son) ; in 1855 to West Troy. Opened
a blacksmith shop on Ferry street, Troy. Afterwards removed to
West Troy. He conducted the newspaper business for years. Was
a noted vocalist. Connected with the choir of St. Patrick's church ;
with a state-wide reputation as a singer and leader. Positions of
honor and profit were offered by Mrs. J. E. Wool, who was at-
tracted and eventually interested in him through his pastime sing-
ing while working at his trade (blacksmith) in his shop opposite
her residence, while from New York City came other offers of
like character. All were refused and during life his adopted home
received the benefit of his accomplishment. The same was appre-
ciated and his demise eliminated from the musical circles of this
section a man prominent and foremost in every movement that
would tend to raise the standard of the profession. Died in 1893.
W. B. Daubney (son) ; born in 1866. Educated in the village
schools. Distributed papers for his father; inspector for the
United Traction Co. ; also connected with the board of health and
for four years secretary of the Civil Service Commission, a posi-
tion which his abilities enabled him to fill with credit. At present
with the Hancock Insurance Co. where his affable, courteous man-
ner and his knowledge of human nature renders him a valuable
employee of the company. A representative citizen whose influ-
ence is exerted for the benefit of the many.
Charles E. Tucker (son of William Tucker, an old-time resi-
dent). Succeeded his father in the drug business. Closed out the
business, enlisted in the navy as master's mate, going to the
Brooklyn Navy Yard for assignment to vessel; returning home
followed other lines of business. Member and captain of James
Roy Steamer Co. at one time. Mrs. Charles E. Tucker's abilities
as a professional are recognized in musical circles throughout the
county as master of both piano and organ. Teacher of music and
organist of Trinity church.
Frederick Polk; located in West Troy, in 1860. Resided in the
Second ward, at the old Delevan Hotel, it being at that time a
residential building. Established and conducted the boot and
C. F. Polk (son). One of the few youths who in early life
recognize and appreciate the fact that advancement from existing
circumstances is obtained only through persistent effort, and with
a record in early life for consistency, promptness and honesty he
became connected with the Polk & Calder Drug Co. in 1879.
Familiarizing himself with every detail of the business, to-day,
1910, he holds the position of president and treasurer of that firm.
W. F. Polk (son). In youthful days like other boys, full of life,
congenial, and could always take a hand in the sports of the times.
Being of a business turn of mind, having a desire to do something
to earn a dollar, he found employment as a newsboy with John
Snyder, one of the then popular newsdealers, and from 1867 to
1869 followed that vocation. His attention to business, prompt-
ness and courteous manner attracted the attention and secured for
him the friendship of Rollin P. Saxe, a prominent lumber dealer
of the village, who secured for him a position in the bank. What-
ever feelings he may have had on entering into his new position,
his gratitude was evident to his benefactor by his strict attention
to business, and he soon secured promotion and to-day, 1910, from
the position of a newsboy he has attained to the position of cashier
of one of Troy's largest financial institutions, National City Bank.
Rollin S. Polk (son of W. F.), having selected the same line of
business as his father, at present holds the position of accountant
with the National State Bank of Troy, an institution whose man-
agement recognizes ability, and promotion follows.
Mrs. Lesetta Polk (mother of C. F. and W. F.), now living,
realizing the many temptations that so often surround early youth-
ful clays, feels and sees that her motherly care, tender and loving
advice, and religious precepts have taken root, and to-day knows
that her loved ones are honored and respected by the community
and are prominent factors in the financial and business element of
Levinus Lansing; member of the Lansing family, that settled
in the Mohawk Valley before it was created the town of Water-
vliet. They were largely identified with the growth and business
interests of this section, owner of large landed property in town
and village, owner of the old Tremont Hotel and the Lansing
House, and at his death it reverted to the heirs, one of whom,
Abram Lansing, well and popularly known, was identified largely
in later years with village affairs. A sister, Henrietta, married
into the Mead family, and one other married Charles Witbeck, a
descendant of the Witbeck family whose history dates back to
Revolutionary time. As farmers, real estate owners, merchants,
and also members of the legal, medical and other professions, both
families were closely connected and deeply interested in the de-
velopment of the farming industries, and the growth and prosperity
of the business ventures of this locality.
Daniel Carthy ; one of the leading contractors in his day, and is
credited with the ownership and building of more buildings in the
old village than any other two in the same line of business. An
active and progressive citizen and interested in all propositions of
a business nature that would tend toward the increase of trade in
this section. He enjoyed the confidence of his business associates,
the good will of his numerous employees, and the respect of all
with whom he became acquainted.
Samuel Carthy (son) ; painter and also carpenter. He never
disappointed his patrons in the character or finish of his work;
could crack a joke or tell a story; one of the old-time Fourth
warders that lived to enjoy themselves and make surroundings
pleasant for others.
Items of Different Dates.
On the lot now occupied by the Wight residence, about 1840,
stood a brewery. The proprietor was drowned in a vat of his own
Fred Stem ; once popular in the Fourth ward. Proprietor of the
Adelphia saloon on Twenty-third street, between Broadway and
the Morrison ferry. On the evening of July 18, 1862, observing
two men interfering with and insulting a lady on her way home
from the ferry, though a man of light weight, gave both all that
was coming to them. In those days the sports of the Fourth ward
were always champions of the weaker sex.
July 14, 1860, the noted Chicago Zouaves visited Troy, where
one of their exhibition drills were given.
In 1825, a wooden house stood near the spot where the big tree
now stands on the lower end of the Arsenal green. It was moved
years later and now stands on lot west of Jones Car Works.
In 1852 Robert Morrison, proprietor of the Ferry House, foot
of Twenty-third street, was the owner of some pet bears. A man
one night went to sleep in their den and was hugged to death by one
of them. Drowned 1853.
The steam ferry at the foot of Sixteenth street (Upper Ferry)
superseded the old horse boat about 1861. Ferry boats for con-
veying teams over the river were abandoned, and boats for the
exclusive use of foot passengers about 1875.
1870. Steamboats from New York to Troy every month.
January 4, 1870, Connecticut, Capt, Teason, first trip.
January 11, 1870, Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) lecture;
under the auspices of the Roy Steamer Co. ; at Union Place Hall.
Subject: " Our fellow citizens of the Sandwich Islands."
Rutger Van Den Burgh, whose father settled in North Green-
bush, Rensselaer county, in the seventeenth century, was born in
1800, the homestead remaining as yet in possession of the family.
Died in 1882. His son, Garrett Van Den Burgh, born in 1830.
Farmers manufactured bricks from the clay on the farm, the exca-
vations from whence it was taken remaining visible to this date.
Died in 1897.
Frederick Van Den Burgh (son), born on the old home farm.
Educated in the schools of Troy, business colleges, and a graduate
of the Albany Medical College in 1894, locating in Watervliet in
1896, contemporary with its incorporation. Well versed in
materia medica, capable of explaining the nature and mode of
action of the various substances, natural and artificial, used by the
profession, he is a valuable addition to the medical fraternity, said
knowledge accruing to the benefit of those that must have the
advice of a physician.
Postmasters of Gibbonsville, West Troy and city of Watervliet
(named Watervliet P. O.) and date of appointment: January 1,
1816, Abijah Wheeler; June 23, 1825, James Hills; September
24, 1829, Abijah Wheeler; November 18, 1830, David Wheeler;
July 3, 1838, Myron R. Peak; June 13, 1841, James M. Barnard;
August 14, 1843, Edward Learned, Jr.; July 23, 1845, Isaac
Hitchcock. Name changed to West Troy: April 28, 1847, Isaac
Hitchcock; April 19, 1849, Origen S. Brigham; January 21,
1851, Alexander McAllister; May 4, 1853, Isaac Hitchcock;
July 6, 1858, Patrick Grattan; May 23, 1861, William H. Vos-
burgh; July 12, 1865, William Hollands; April 23, 1878, Wil-
liam C. Durant; February 28, 1887, Patrick Reiley; June 9,
1890, Theodore T. Woodward; January 31, 1891, Patrick Reiley;
February 25, 1898, Edmund S. Hollands; March 21, 1902,
Charles McOmber. Name changed to Watervliet: February 1,
1905, Charles McOmber; March 4, 1907, Thos. G. Ross.
Presidents of Gibbonsville : 1825, Julius Hanks; 1827, John
Ranney; 1828, Amos Larcum; 1829, D. T. Wandell; 1830, Jere-
miah Dyer; 1831, Isaac Chapman; 1835, Edward Learned.
Trustees : James T. Morrison, Moses Tyler, David Morrison,
Charles Learned, Hyram Hopkins, Levi Lyncoln, Ephraim Bald-
win, William P. Hall, David Wheeler, Smith Balou, Zachariah
Cramer, Abram Myers, Henry Thalimer, John Tuesdell, Learned
Hutton, John B. Collar, Eben Jones, Benjamin Brown, Martin
Witbeck, J. C. Green.
Abram Hilton, former resident of the town of Guilderland,
where he was engaged in the grocery business, settled in West
Troy, and established the same line, locating at No. 1417 Broad-
way. The building was built and owned by the first master
mechanic of the government post, the third story being occupied
in 1840 by Lodge No. 38, I. O. O. F. Building eighty years old.
John Hilton (brother), who came at the same time, formed the
firm of John Hilton & Co. in 1881. Though comparative
strangers in the village, at least as merchants, with a strong com-
petition to contend with, having a perfect knowledge of business
methods then in vogue, and withal good buyers, with capital suffi-
cient to enable them to anticipate the market, they succeeded in
advancing to the front in business circles. In 1905, the firm title
was changed to that of John Hilton & Co., Incorporated, and with
an up-to-date stock, quick service, and prompt delivery, places
them in the lead of all competitors. Abram Hilton, though not a
politician, has the interest of the city at all times in view. He
received the nomination for and was elected to the office of mayor
of the city in 1900, performing the duties of same satisfactory to
his constituents. Prominent in church work; connected with the
Reformed Dutch Church ; treasurer of same for years and deacon.
Edward Holmes; settled in West Troy in 1836. Learned the
blacksmith business with Henry Kimberly in the old shop, corner
Broadway and Twentieth street. Purchased the business of Mr.
Kimberly and conducted the same several years. As an apprentice
in the early days, supplies for the business bought in Troy were
carried on his shoulders over the ferry boat, something those learn-
ing a trade do not and would not do in the twentieth century. Mr.
Holmes forged the iron girders that were used in the old Twenty-
third street bridge. Served some time as head blacksmith at the
Arsenal. Removed to Cohoes where he now resides, at the age of
82 years. His son Edward, Jr., and grandson John, reside in West
James Jones; from Scotland in 1857. Entered the employ of
James Roy & Co. Later secured position at the Watervliet
Arsenal, and in 1866 established the jewelry and watch business,
the firm being Jones & Podmore, when in 1882 removed to Troy,
opening on River street.
George S. Haswell; son of Ira M. Haswell, who settled in
Watervliet in 1829. Graduated from Albany Medical College in
1872. Prominent in the medical profession. Held position of
coroner in 1896 ; successful in locating relatives of the cases com-
ing under his supervision. Well known, popular, and up-to-date
Ira M. Haswell, one of the oldest settlers of the old town of
Watervliet (Colonie). Connected with the farming industry
many years, also with the business of the village in its infancy.
Member of the Washington M. E. Church ; largely identified with
its interests. One of the most prominent residents in this section.
His death created a vacancy in business, social and church circles
not easilv filled.
Presidents of the village of West Troy, from its incorporation
in 1836, to the erection of the city of Watervliet in 1896:
1836, Edward Learned; 1837, Martin Witbeck; 1838, Myron R.
Peak; 1839, Andrew Meneely; 1840, Martin Witbeck; 1841,
Samuel Wilgus; 1842, Myron R. Peak; 1843, Andrew Meneely;
1844, A. T. Dunham; 1845, Albert T. Richards; 1846, Archibald
A. Dunlop; 1847, A. T. Dunham; 1848, Daniel C. Stewart;
1849, Herman Mather; 1850, Daniel C. Stewart; 1851, Samuel
Crawford; 1852, Morgan Taylor; 1853, L. D. Collins; 1854,
George B. Frazer; 1855 and 1856, Martin Witbeck; 1857, Samuel
Waterman; 1858, James Roy; 1859, James Brady; 1860, George
R. Meneely; 1861, William L. Oswald; 1862, Peter A. Rogers;
1863, James Duffy; 1864, Louis S. Rousseau; 1865, Francis
Bebee; 1866 and 1867, James Hamil; 1868, William B. Wil-
liams; 1869, Terrence Cummings; 1870 to 1871, Perry Pobin-
son; 1872 and 1873, Terrence Cummings ; 1 874 and 1875. Michael
Reiley; 1876 and 1877, Patrick Lane; 1878, Robert Tunnard;
1879 and 1880, Joseph McLean; 1881, George B. Mosher; 1882,
J. B. Hulsapple; 1883, Wm. B. Cox; 1884, Patrick Lane; 1885
and 1886, Terrence Ciimmmsrs ; 1887 and 1888, J. F. Burk ; 1889,
J. F. Burk; 1890, 1891, 1892, 1893, 1894, Peter A. Rogers;
1895, J. C. Wilbur; 1896, Michael J. Day.
Those who were selected in early days for office were representa-
tive men, taxpayers, men whose business interests outweighed any
prestige gained from office holding, therefore, as you read, and
especially those of you that knew some of the early persons named,
ask yourselves the question, How many of the above list, if living
to-day, would stoop to the trickery and scheming of the average
politicians of the twentieth century to obtain the office ?
In 1896, an act to incorporate the city of Watervliet became a
law May 20 — the last link to the previous ones forged that would
lengthen and strengthen the chain of previous commercial enter-
prises that had heretofore been established on a sound basis by
intelligent and far-seeing business men of the earlier period. The
success in continuing the same has been prevented through the
ignorance of business methods, and the inability of their suc-
cessors, in the business and political arena, to cope with the situa-
tion as it existed prior to its incorporation; their first blunder
committed when they changed the name from West Troy to that
of Watervliet. With no plans formed, nothing tangible in sight
that would immediately accrue to the city's interest, to recoup
former losses, they railroaded the bill through the Legislature,
with the boundary lines of no additional benefit as far as revenue
to the city treasury is concerned. The second blunder, taxpayers
receiving no relief from heavy burdens, and the failure of the city
authorities to take advantage of the opportunity when the Green
Island bridge burned to secure their rights — a free bridge across
State water (the Mohawk basin), the toll of two cents being an
imposition on the general public. Third blunder, on assuming
control of municipal affairs as the bill designated, 1897, it was up
to them to make good. The aim, plan and scope of the undertaking
was far beyond their business training and intellectual capacity
to cope with, and with a few spasmodic efforts of self-constituted
committees in further attempts to bankrupt the city (but were
caught on the hip) and the boom that was expected to mature
through and by the noted heralding of the cleaning of the city,
instituted by a keen, shrewd newcomer — high officials doffing
their hats to the self-appointed hygienic apostle, and skirting the
city, taking only a birdseye view of the situation — in autos,
results could and would have accrued long ago, under the char-
ter, had the officials' been not afraid to perform their duty.
Therefore, under the present regime we find the city in 1910 with
no additional business within its limits, finances in no better con-
dition, and all the citizen has received during the last ten years
from the hands of his servants is the honor accorded him by the
act of incorporation — provided there is any honor — to sign his
address to all correspondence city of Watervliet.
Date of Diploma: 1824, N. L. Hungerford (died 1839) ; Dr.
J. Van Alstyne (away 1866) ; 1830, Augustus Viele (died 1870) ;
1837, A. Hammond (died 1852) ; 1840, Dr. Fiddler; 1838, J. K.
Buckland; 1836, J. Shankland; 1850, A. Sbiland (died 1886);
1850, R. H. Sabin (died 1883) ; 1881, C. M. Culver; J. C. Shi-
land (died 1908); O. F. Cobb (died 1877); 1873, A. S. Van
Vranken (died 1900) ; 1886, A. McNaughton (died 1893) ; 1881,
F. S. Bloss; 1888, F. D. Cole; J. P. Witbeck (died 1872) ; 1858,
J. P. Gregory; 1859, P. E. Fennelly; Dr. D. Burrus; 1872, G. S.
Haswell; 1887, Merlin J. Zeh, Dr. Emmet Flagler, Lansing Van
Aukin; 1894, F. P. Van Denburgb; 1882, Wm. B. Sabin; 1874,
C. Buffington, Geo. B. Grady, Eugene Hanratta, Dr. Uline, Dr.
Elias Burman; 1884, L. B. Rulison, Dr. S. N". Daniels, Dr. James
Thorn, Rudolph Seabring, Dr. Thos. E. Deveney.
Some of the Vocal and Instrumeiytal Musicians of the
Past and Present.
Thomas Gunsalus, Geo. Bennett, C. R. Doolittle, James Duffy,
William Daubney, G. Benedick, E. P. Jones, Philip Miller, Chas.
Bortle, Chas. Hoxie, A. H. Goddard, William C. Goodrich, Miss
Cressey, Culver Tenbrock, Miss Nettie Hipwood, Mrs. Chas.
Tucker, Mrs. James Duffy, Mrs. E. L. Pettis, Miss Carrie Durant,
Miss Jennie Eggers, Miss Anna Eggers, Miss Ella Durant, Miss
Lena Eggers (elocutionist), Henry C. Decker, Guy S. Ball, Miss
Annie Duffy, Miss Elizabeth Duffy, C. G. Phillips, Miss Hill,
Miss Emma Kisby, Miss Emma Mitchell, Miss Bertha Schilling,
Charles Doring, James Hitchcock, J. P. Chalou, A. P. Davis,
Ida Alger, Mary Burns, John Forrester, John Hicks, J. Hanley,
John J. Fogarty and many others.
Many of those mentioned, though passed beyond, are remem-
bered, not only by their associates, but by the general public, who
have often listened and heard them in public and private enter-
tainments, yet the fact is apparent that there never has been
enterprise or liberality exhibited by those who patronize out-of-town
musicales, to assist, or in any manner encourage the establishment
of a choral club from the material that has been, and does yet
reside among us, and thereby recognize home talent. Should
some of the very few liberal-minded citizens drop to the situation,
take pattern after their neighbor, some of us may live to hear a
choral club composed of home talent that will be competent to
arrange a few numbers and stage the same within the limits of
Watervliet, that would be acceptable to our citizens, and that
would add funds to the club that would enable them to extend
their reputation by a summer outing among the White mountains.
The Ghost Club, composed of a coterie of young men of the city,
whose professional abilities as actors and vocalists are recognized
by the community, their entertainments being of a high order.
President, Geo. F. Jamison; treasurer, Edward B. Shires; secre-
tary, Alonzo Roush ; tenor, Edwin H. Billings.
Thos. Cairns came from Ireland in 1897. Educated at the
Aughna Cleagh National School, County Antrim. In 1903
established the grocery business at 1700 Broadway, and in 1905
removed to his present location 1701 Broadway. Centrally located,
with an attractive display of a choice selection of staple and fancy
groceries, it has become the center of attraction of a discriminating
public, whereby the magnetic influence that attaches to " popular "
prices adds to the volume of business already secured.
List of Steamboats, from 1807 to 1910, fkom Teoy,
Albany, New Yokk.
1807, Clermont, New York to Albany; 1808, North Eiver,
New York to Albany; 1809, Car of Neptune; 1811, Hope, Para-
gon, Perseverance; 1812, Fire Fly, First, Troy to Albany; 1813,
Richmond; 1814, Fulton; 1815, Olive Branch; 1816, Chancellor
Livingston; 1817, Stouginger; 1819, Henry Eckford ; 1823,
James Kemp; 1824, Hudson; 1825, Sandusky, Bristol, Constitu-
tion, Constellation, Chief Justice Marshall, Saratoga; 1826, Sim,
Niagara, New London, Philadelphia, Swift Sure; Commerce;
1827, Albany, North America, Victory; 1828, De Witt Clinton;
1829, Ohio; 1830, Novelty; 1831, John Jay; 1832, Champlain,
Erie; 1833, Ellen (Burden's Cigar boat); 1835, Robert L.
Stephens, John Mason ; 1836, Rochester, Jonas C. Heart, Swallow
(wrecked in 1845); 1837, James Farley, Utica, United States;
1838, Diamond, Illinois; 1839, Balloon, North America; 1840,
South America, Troy; 1841, Columbia; 1842, Curtis Peck; 1843,'
Empire, Knickerbocker; 1844, Trojan; 1845, Bell, Express,
Niagara, Rip Van Winkle, Hendrick Hudson, Oregon; 1846,
Thomas Powell; 1848, Isaac Newton; 1851, Reindeer; 1852,
Golden Gate (burned at Troy dock); 1854, Hero; Frances
Skiddy, Commodore; 1866, Sunny Side (sunk by Golden Gate),
Connecticut, Vanderbilt; 1876, City of Troy; 1877, Saratoga;
1909, Trojan, Rensselaer.
Boats running to Albany of late years not stated.
John Lorman, his father a pioneer on the upper Mohawk,
moved to Gibbonsville in 1811, where John was born. The Lor-
man family (Benjamin and William) were connected with the
early fisheries of this section. John was also in the employ of the
Wiswalls on the old horse boats foot of Sixteenth street, many
years. Benjamin was also identified with the old fire department
and held the office of captain of old Conqueror No. 3, and also
chief of the same. John's death occurred in 1883. He was a well-
known and respected citizen.
William J. Lorman (son), born in the village of West Troy.
Educated in the village schools and La Salle Institute. Connected
with the leading papers of this section as reporter for over fifteen
years; is popular, an agreeable companion and a bright star
among the newspaper fraternity.
Supervisors of Town of Watervliet from 1818 to 1898 :
J. C. Schuyler, Jr., Lucas G. Witbeck, J. C. Schuyler, Francis
Lansing, Gilbert I. Van Zandt, Archibald A. Dunlop, James H.
Brisban, Dillon Bebee, William J. Wheeler, W. G. Caw, Gerrit
Van O'Linda, Emmet Flagler, Jessie C. Dayton, David M.
Wooster, Nicholas T. Kane, Patrick Keiley, Richard Scully, Ter-
rence Cummings, Edwin G. Glass.
Supervisors of City of Watervliet : Thomas E. Coggins, Henry
E. Retallick, Cornelius T. Murphy, John J. Shilling, James H.
Chiefs of Fire Department from 1829 to 1910: 1829, David
I. Dutcher, William Tucker, S. S. Wandell, Isaac Chapman, Geo.
Sturtevant, Michael Savin, Geo. Aldrich, A. W. Richardson, Wil-
liam L. Oswald, H. D. Finch, Benjamin Lorman, R. I. Getty,
Chas. Du Charme, J. E. Lyons, Wm. Stewart, Jas. O. Wood,
M. Leroy, Lewis Smith, M. Kelly, R. I. Getty, J. E. Lyons, (Jas.
T. Myers, 1876), Jas. B. McGuire, M. Kelly, Dennis Ryan, (Geo.
H. Taylor, 1877), J. Mclntvre, (Lewis W. Smith, 1883 to 1906),
J. E. Meskell, Jr., 1906, Nelson Sadelmire, 1907, 1908, 1909 and
John McDonough, resident of the old village. Cooper. After-
wards opened a meatmarket. Became a candidate on the Demo-
cratic ticket for justice of the peace, and was elected ; performed
his duty, showing no favoritism; his party not liking his mode
of procedure, caused his defeat for renomination. Conducted a
large hardware, stove and tinware business for years on Twenty-
third street, continuing in the business until he died in 1904. He
was a personal friend of James Kennedy, who was once a cooper
with Mr. Dann. Later a large real estate owner who died 1910.
William Ellson in 1860 opened and conducted the boot and
shoe business in what is now 2304 Broadway (Lansing estate).
Very prominent in politics and an admirer and supporter of Hon.
L. D. Collins. Socially inclined and recognized as one of the
Fourth ward prominent citizens. Died in 1874.
P. E. Fennelly, M. D., graduate of St. Kyrans College, Kil-
kenny, Ireland. In 1867 he came to this country. Graduating at
Medical College, Albany, in 1869. Member of various societies
and also health officer some time.
Nicholas T. Kane; born in Ireland in 1846; came here in
1848 ; died on September 14, 1887. Engaged in the manufacture
of knit goods. Supervisor in 1882 ; held the office until death
closed his lifework. Prominent member of Post Kane; also vice-
president of Gleason Hook and Ladder Company. Prominent in
Volkert J. Oothout, son of Jonas V. Oothout and Helen M.
(Lobdell) Oothout. He was born in 1855; graduated from the
Albany Law School in 1881; married Sarah E. Blunn. Descend-
ant of Hendrick Oothout one of the old settlers on the Mohawk
The Wiswall family: Ebenezer Wiswall, Sr., Eben Wiswall,
Jr., and John Parker Wiswall. In 1810 the Wiswalls were, with
others, connected in the ownership of farm lands in South Troy,
West Troy and Cohoes. J. Parker Wiswall died in 1875. Edward
Wiswall married Sarah Marks. Connected with that family, who
settled here in early days. The Wiswalls have been very prominent
in the business interests of the old villages. They held the ferry
rights many years, and also identified with the religious and
social features as they existed in days gone by, and are among the
few pioneer families that are identified with the business, religious
and social features of Watervliet.
William Helm came from Germany in 1856, to West Troy in
1866. Shoemaker. Died in 1898. Member Jermain Lutheran
William J. Helm (son) established the shoe business in 1876
at his present location, ISTo. 1553 Broadway. Member of Oswald
Hose Company, captain in 1901, and treasurer of same at this
date. One of our business men that has a pride in the city's fire
department, seeking to place it on a higher plane of efficiency. A
thorough business man, of large acquaintance and popular through-
out the city.
Charles G. Richenecker, carriage manufacturer; came from
Germany to West Saugerties in 1882, and to West Troy in 1888,
being employed by Martin Payne and other firms in Troy until
1889, when he established a plant for the manufacturing of car-
riages, etc. Affiliated with Laurel Lodge, I. O. O. F., in 1890.
Beginning at the first round of the ladder he has steadily advanced
step by step through perseverance, and by the employment of
the best mechanics in his line that were available he has been in
a position to place upon the market a class of goods that are the
equal if not superior to other firms in the same line. As a citizen
he has an interest in the city's improvement. Is an honored mem-
ber of the business community and a congenial neighbor.
John Gladding Clute, son of Charles Clute, liveryman. John
G. entered the employment of Mr. Charles Moore in the news-
paper and stationery business, leaving his service for the position
of messenger for the Bank of West Troy, and for years has been
a trusted attache thereof. While connected with this corporation
he has filled the position of bookkeeper, paymaster and secretary
for the noted firm of William E. Martin, contractors and builders,
doubling his hours of labor, looking forward to gain a foothold in
the business world, and to-day his close attention to business,
courteous manner, integrity, together with his loyal fidelity to
the interests of his employers, has secured for him the proud
position of secretary and treasurer and also member of the firm
of the William E. Martin Company. A position well deserved
by a popular representative citizen.
Mrs. Charles Clute (mother). Her natural anxiety in the
beginning of her son's business career was much relieved at his
early success in life, and her declining years are spent in peaceful
quiet and happiness.
Post Jones-Kane, G. A. R., an organization of veterans of the
Civil War, whose services rendered in times of trouble are, and
should be, appreciated by every loyal American citizen. Frank
J. McGuirk is commander.
Royal Arcanum, Watervliet Council No. 1267. Fraternal and
beneficial organization, whose members have a deep interest in
the welfare of each other, and with open-handed generosity when
necessity calls they come to the front with the necessary assist-
ance. E. H. Perkins, regent.
Arsenal City Glee Club. Walter Miller, president; A. 0.
Young, treasurer ; Fred Rosekrans, secretary. Popular organiza-
tion, very much in the limelight.
R. S. Turner came to West Troy in 1891. Established the
grocery business in 1893, corner of Fifth avenue and Fourteenth
street. To increase his business, in 1901 he seized the opportunity
offered and purchased the elegant residence corner of Third avenue
and Sixteenth street, remodeled part of same, and to-day one of
the finest fancy and staple groceries existing in the very center of
the most popular section of the city. That no mistake was made in
its selection, and financial interests have been subserved is evi-
denced from the large stock of goods carried, denoting a steady
increase of patronage. Mr. Turner was at one time alderman
from the Fourth ward ; also member of the Electric Light Com-
mission, is well posted as to former conditions that retarded the
city's advancement, and is in accord with any legitimate move-
ment tending to retrieve the business losses of the same.
H. M. Hulsapple, bookseller, stationer and newsdealer. A con-
tinuation of the business formerly established by Mr. Charles
Moore, a well-known and honored citizen. His ill health forced
him to retire, greatly regretted by his many personal friends. The
firm as now represented occupies a leading position and are thor-
oughly up to date in their line. Being centrally located, 1589
Broadway, near Sixteenth street ferry, strangers and others can
find at all times the latest periodicals of the day.
John C. Taylor came to West Troy in 1836. Followed the
trade of stove mounting when foundries were many and wages
were such that enabled the employee to live as a white man should.
Henry S. Taylor (son), born and educated in the schools of the
place. Engaged in the liquor traffic ; afterward established the
grocery business in 1903 at his present location, corner Third
avenue and Twenty-third street. He is well known and popular.
C. D. Van Dercook; cigar box manufactory. Established in
Troy in 1878. Herman A. Wolfram, settling in Troy in 1869,
became connected with him, being a woodworker, foot of Federal
street, Troy. Soon after the firm burned out, and in 1898 Mr.
Wolfram removed the business, locating in Watervliet at 1621
Twenty-first street, just east of Broadway. In 1903, the only
cigar box factory, and one of the few industrial plants located in
the city that is known through the State, carrying and supplying
to the trade a line of goods that both in price and quality outclass
many competitors, while the well known standard business methods
of the proprietor secures for him the confidence of the business
community. At one time a member of the public improvement
commission and at present one of the police commissioners of the
city, he is not a politician, yet is interested in any movement that
will improve conditions as they now exist, realizing that the com-
bined efforts of the citizens are necessary to uplift and advance
the social, moral and business interests of the city if capitalists
and others are attracted to locate within its borders.
John Mabin ; from Ireland in 1882. Employed for some three
years at Roys' Mills. After, in 1885, established the grocery and
provision business on Second avenue, Port Schuyler. In 1898
purchased the residence of Gen. A. T. Dunlop, corner of Third
avenue and Fifth street. Remodeled it and removed it the same
year. In the short time Mr. Mabin has resided in West Troy by
perseverance, industry and honest business methods he has secured
from the first opening a steady increase of patronage that to-day
places him at the head of his line of business in the lower section
of the city. At one period member of public improvement com-
mission. His residence is connected with the store, with a spacious
lawn in front, where Gen. Dunham often exhibited the noted horse
Moscow. It is the original building, with the four wooden pillars
that were in vogue in the early days of the eighteenth century.
Ambrose Wilcox; came to West Troy in 1850. Cooper; for
some time on police force, engaged in the ice business and followed
same until his death in 1901.
Andros Wilcox assumed the business and continued until 1897.
Death also closed his life work.
Eugene F. Wilcox ; educated in the village, also in Troy. Car-
ried on the same business of his father for some time. Closed out
and opened an office as an insurance agent, real estate and broker-
age. One of the few young men that seek opportunities to increase
the volume of business already established, believing in the maxim,
" If you want something ask for it, or go for it at once." In
connection with the above he carries on a large painting and wall
paper business, employing expert workmen, and guaranteeing all
Thomas A. Mabin, having settled in West Troy in 1872, estab-
lished the grocery business at the southeast corner of Twenty-third
and River avenue. His business increasing, necessitating more
floor space, he removed to his large new store, No. 1010 Twenty-
third street. His stock of choice groceries is large, displayed with
taste, and customers always receive quick and courteous attention.
One of the small number of prominent representative business men
of the city that may in the near future be able to retrieve the lost
prestige of this commonwealth.
L. W. Truax; located in West Troy in 1894, as carpenter
and builder ; through a perfect understanding with his patrons, on
contracts, and the fulfilment of same, enabled him to succeed in
establishing a lucrative business. On account of poor health he
discontinued the same in 1902 and established the grocery business
on southwest corner of Twenty-third street and Second avenue.
Business increasing, and not having floor space, he removed to his
present location, 221 Twenty-third street. Always in touch with
the markets, and withal a close buyer, he is enabled to place before
his patrons a line of goods to select from, fresh, palatable, and at
moderate prices. Elmer C. Truax (son), a valuable assistant,
having acquired full knowledge of the business, can be found at all
times attentive to the same, filling all orders promptly, believing
that promises fulfilled make many friends.
Board of Health is directly interested in the sanitary regula-
tions of the city. Where is there any evidence of duty well per-
formed, or that they as a body, ever became personally interested
in the work coming under their supervision.
Public Schools, Board of Education. The one body of office-
holders that, with the desire and aid of our citizens, have placed
our schools in the front rank of educational institutions in this
Gen. John E. Wool Post No. 671. Organized 1905. Col. S.
W. Snyder, Commander. Charter Members: Col. S. W. Snyder,
William T. Yearsley, William Spencer, Samuel Sexton, William
Barker, Cortland Adams. The post has a large membership of vet-
erans who served their country during our national troubles in the
60's. Many of them to-day bear the scars that at times have been
and are yet the cause of great suffering, and are evidences of
supreme loyalty to the government, and an indestructible badge
PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES.
George Washington, born February 22, 1732; term of office,
1789 to 1797 ; died December 14, 1799.
John Adams, born October 30, 1735; term of office, 1797 to
1801 ; died July 4, 1823.
Thomas Jefferson, born April 2, 1743; term of office, 1801 to
1809 ; died July 4, 1826.
James Madison, born March 16, 1751 ; term of office, 1809 to
1817; died June 28, 1845.
James Monroe, born April 28, 1758; term of office, 1817 to
1825 ; died July 4, 1831.
John Quincy Adams, born July 11, 1767; term of office, 1825
to 1829 ; died February 23, 1848.
Andrew Jackson, born March 15, 1767 ; term of office, 1829 to
1837; died June 8, 1845.
Martin Van Buren, born December 5, 1782 ; term of office, 1837
to 1841 ; died July 24, 1862.
William Henry Harrison, born February 9, 1773 ; term of office,
1841, one month; died April 4, 1841.
John Tyler, born March 29, 1790; term of office, 1841 to 1845;
died January 18, 1862.
James K. Polk, born November 2, 1795 ; term of office, 1845 to
1849 ; died June 15, 1849.
Zachary Taylor, born September 24, 1784; term of office, 1849
to 1850; died July 9, 1850.
Millard Filmore, born February 7, 1800; term of office, 1850
to 1853 ; died March 8, 1874.
Franklin Pierce, born November 23, 1804; term of office, 1853
to 1857; died October 8, 1869.
James Buchanan, born April 22, 1791 ; term of office, 1857 to
1861 ; died June 1, 1868.
Abraham Lincoln, born February 12, 1809 ; term of office, 1861
to 1865; re-elected in 1865; assassinated April 15, 1865.
Andrew Johnson, born December 29, 1808; term of office, 1865
to 1869; died July 31, 1875.
Ulysses S. Grant, born April 27, 1822; term of office, 1869 to
1877; died July 23, 1885.
Eutherford B. Hayes, born October 4, 1822 ; term of office, 1877
to 1881 ; died January 17, 1893.
James A. Garfield, born November 19, 1831; term of office,
1881 ; assassinated September 19, 1881.
Chester A. Arthur, born October 5, 1830 ; term of office, 1881
to 1885 ; died November 18, 1886.
Grover Cleveland, born March 18, 1837; term of office, 1885
Benjamin Harrison, born August 20, 1833; term of office, 1889
to 1893 ; died March 13, 1901.
Grover Cleveland, second term; term of office, 1893 to 1897.
William McKinley, born January 29, 1843 ; term of office, 1897
William McKinley, second term; term of office, 1901; assassin-
ated September 14, 1901.
Theodore Koosevelt, born October 27, 1858; term of office, 1901
to 1905 ; filled vacancy.
Theodore Eoosevelt, term of office, 1905 to 1909.
William H. Taft, term of office, 1909 to 1913.
Fortnightly literary society, organized 1905 ; Charles L. Oot-
hout, president ; Mrs. Florence Hallock, vice-president ; Mrs. David
Kelly, recording secretary; Miss Anna M. Agan, corresponding
secretary ; Miss Mattie E. Farr, treasurer ; Mrs. F. P. Van Den-
Engaged in literary research, the ladies of this society quit the
ordinary paths of pleasure, and entered the realms of literature,
to improve their minds, gaining thereby a knowledge of the master
literarians of the world on all subjects. Literature embraces a
large field of subjects and he or she that has the inclination during
leisure moments to read up on poetry, history, biography or fiction
that will enable them to gain a correct idea of the historian's work,
adds to their social qualifications, and a classical education. Under
the leadership of their able literarian, Mrs. F. P. Van Den-
bergh, the society stands pre-eminent.
James T. Young, wood worker. Office and factory located on
Nineteenth street opposite D. and H. station. To West Troy in
1890. Established in 1897. The largest and only manufactory
of first class wood work, including- store, office and bank fixtures
in this section. The designing and manufacture of all work is
under the personal supervision of Mr. Young thereby securing to
his patrons the benefit of his matured experience in all details of
the business which enables him to guarantee satisfaction on all
contracts. A leading manufacturer of the city in accord with all
legitimate methods to improve the present status of the city, and
his friends are many.
George B. Preston Construction Company. Office, corner Fifth
street and Second avenue. G. B. Preston, president. Carpenters
and builders. Reinforced concrete work and block manufacturers.
One of the most enterprising and popular firms in their line in the
city. Their work throughout the city is evidence of the reliability
of the firm, and the fact that the same is appreciated is noted
through accumulating orders. Their motto: First class workman-
ship and material at the lowest possible figures consistent with
If the spasmodic announcement of the spread eagle meetings of
our Board of Trade would only culminate into genuine observable
activity and less talk it might be possible to locate in this vicinity
a few more desirable firms like those mentioned.
Friday Study Club, a literary society, the members graduates
of the Emma Willard and other institutions of like character.
Readings, historical and others; biographies of noted persons and
delineation of character, portraying at times humor, pathos and
sarcasm, is the menu served at their gatherings. President, Mrs.
J. W. F. Podmore; vice-president, Mrs. J. L. Haswell; treasurer,
Mrs. I. M. Haswell ; secretary, Mrs. I. G. Braman ; historian,
Mrs. F. P. Van Denbergh.
W. D. Grady established the drug business in 1908, corner of
Twenty-third street and Sixth avenue, the center of a large popu-
lation, who appreciate the same, as it brings them nearer to a
depot where medical supplies can be obtained as necessity requires
and one that circumstances demanded.
Our present police force. Efficient in service, ready at all
times to perform their duty, yet oft times seeing their efforts to
bring criminals to justice sidetracked through chicanery of court
officials in the interest of some political friend of the criminal
whereby the case is pigeonholed or sentence suspended, too often
to the detriment of all law-abiding citizens.
Charles Noller. From England in 1861. Employed at the
United States arsenal as harness maker. Established the business
later in Port Schuyler, and in 1888 located in Union Place Flat
building, corner Broadway and Fifteenth street. It is the largest
and best stocked harness and saddlery concern in the city. A
large patronage from noted horsemen enabled a display of fine
workmanship in harness on many a winner in races in days gone
by. One of the business men of the city who is progressive, and
one whose interest and influence in municipal affairs is fully
demonstrated through his activity as trustee of the First and
Second Wards, police commissioner four years, and also former
member of Board of Health.
The Ludlum Steel and Spring Co. From New Jersey in 1907.
Located on Fifth street near the D. and H. railroad, giving them
adequate shipping facilities. President, William E. Ludlum.
Edwin Corning, secretary and treasurer. Output consists of
crucible cast steel mechanics' tools and railway car springs. A
valuable addition to the manufacturing interests of this section, as
plants of like character furnish desired employment for resident
The Covert Manufacturing Company. Established in Troy,
N". Y., 1873. James C. and Madison Covert, Henry and Scud-
der Wakeman constituted the firm. Removed to West Troy in
1879. The Wakemans withdrew, and in 1893 Madison Covert
severed his connection with the firm, James C. Covert, pro-
prietor, continuing the manufacture of saddlery, harness and
wrought iron chains. At this date, 1910, carriage, wagon and
automobile jacks, rope ties, halters and hammock ropes, in con-
nection with the Covert celebrated harness snap, breast heel and
rein chain represent the output of the firm, and are recognized
by all prominent horsemen as standard goods. The advanced
leaders in their several lines of goods and recognized as such in
business circles. The standing of this firm and the location of
their plant within this city adds to its prestige, and should be an
incentive to our citizens to formulate some plan that would enable
them to induce others of like character to locate with us.
H. M. Witbeck & Lawrence, wagon makers, in the old Delevan
building, situate on Broadway below Fourteenth street, in 1832.
Lawrence withdrew, and the firm was Witbeck & Jones. J. M.
Jones Company established in 1839. Location, Delavan Hotel
building on Broadway, east side, between Thirteenth and Four-
teenth streets, in the village of Gibbonsville. The building is now
ninety years old. H. M. Witbeck & J. M. Jones, wagon makers,
1863. Witbeck withdrew, George Lawrence becoming the new
member, withdrawing 1864. The manufacture of wagons pre-
viously abandoned. John H. and Walter A. Jones became con-
nected with the business with their father, J. M. Jones, street rail-
way car builders. After his death in 1882 the business con-
tinued under the supervision of the brothers until the death of
Walter, when John H. Jones became the head of the present firm
of J. M. Jones' Sons. During the many years the firm has existed
it has been a valuable adjunct to the prosperity of the old village
and the present city through the large number of its employees,
and as the work necessitated expert mechanics the pay roll was of
necessity large and therefore an additional benefit to the mer-
chants of the city. The members of this firm always have been
and are yet interested and take an active part in legitimate move-
ments that tend towards elevating and advancing the business
interests of the city, but are aware of the fact that combined effort
of all forces must obtain to effect desired results.
Herman Carl, one of Troy's early residents, father of Frederick
W. Carl, who located in the city of Watervliet in 1904. Proprietor
of the largest and best equipped pharmacy in the city. From its
first opening a favorable impression was created and a f eeling^ 01
security was felt that under the new management the prescription
department (a material item) would be safeguarded in every point,
and that promptness and reliability was to be the motto of the
firm. Increased patronage is evidence of the popularity of the
H. C. Becker, carriage manufacturer. Established 1876. The
plant is located on Nineteenth street near Broadway, occupying
seven lots, a very desirable location, fronting on same. Since the
first day Mr. Becker has endeavored to build only the best that
skilled workmen and finished material would produce in a
vehicle. His warerooms are replete with full line oi wagons,
rockaways, three-seated runabouts, top buggies, physicians' car-
riages, finished in natural wood or painted. His family
sleighs and special style of carriages, when on exhibition,
have been a specialty for many years. Mr. Becker has enjoyed
the confidence of a large circle of friends throughout this locality,
Vermont and Massachusetts, and from the time of the first loca-
tion in the old village of West Troy has been an energetic citizen
interested in all public affairs tending to the betterment oi city
government. Six years with the Board of Water Commissioners
as president, seeking improvement in the city's supply of water.
Also member of the present Board of Public Improvement^ Com-
mission of the city. He also advocates that our best citizens
should control municipal affairs. While seeking the welfare of
the city has always been prominent along religious lines, and ready
to contribute both time and means for the betterment of hiimanity.
Mr. Becker has well earned the reputation which he enjoys for
fair dealing. Live and let live.
George Isaac White. From England to Albany, thence to
West Troy prior to 1850. Contractor and builder. Superintended
the building of the new weighlock, his death occurring in 1856,
soon after its erection.
Jonathan White (son), known to-day as John White. Born in
1845. Self educated, except a short season during his early days
in the village schools. After a short clerkship with the Troy
Towing Company he entered the office of Samuel Waterman, lum-
ber dealer. In 1880 he resigned his position and established
boarding and sales stables, located 1627 Second avenue — well
ventilated, commodious box or open stalls, with spacious exercising
yard, well sheltered, large storerooms for carriages and sleighs;
also handled grain, baled hay, upholstering tow and excelsior in
car lots or at retail. Mr. White is well known among the business
men of the city, and is in accord with any movement that will add
to the future prosperity of the city.
The Searle Manufacturing Company, branch of the noted linen
collar and cuff firm of the city of Troy, N. Y., located in the city
of Watervliet in one of the factories of the James Roy Company,
corner Broadway and Fourth street, for the exclusive manufacture
of night robes, pajamas and bath robes, their large volume of
business necessitating the addition of another plant to those al-
ready established. Their office is pleasantly situated, overlooking
the Hudson river and opposite the site of the first flour mill estab-
lished in this locality. Their employees numbering over 100 will
soon be increased to 200 or more, thereby furnishing employment to
those residing in the lower section of the city, and a material addi-
tion to the business interests of the city. President, W. W. Searle.
Knaus Bros. & Arwine Company. To Watervliet 1909. Makers
of craftstyle furniture, chairs, rockers, settees, Morris chairs,
their manufacturing plant occupying the buildings and ground
formerly known as the Seymour chair factory, southwest corner
Second avenue and Twenty-fifth street. With up-to-date machinery
and the employment of over 200 expert mechanics they are in
position to meet competition from all sources. The opening of the
plant is an addition to those previously located, and the sound of
the old whistle announcing the opening and closing of the works
recalls to mind the prosperous times of years gone by and an-
nounces a new era in the business prosperity of the city.
Matthew McGrath, came from Ireland to Troy, in 1855.
Opened a large bakery on what is now Fifth avenue, but later
established a distillery, the next year he disposed of same, and
moved to West Troy and opened a wholesale liquor and wine
establishment on Ohio and Auburn streets (Third avenue and
Twenty-first street). Later the co-partnership of Riley & Mc-
Grath was formed, and they established a brewery on Broadway.
Mr. McGrath always had the confidence of his business asso-
ciates ; honorable in his business transactions, energetic and force-
ful, and at the time of his demise, occurring in February, 1875,
was sincerely mourned, as was evidenced by the singular fact that
when the first carriage reached St. Mary's cemetery, Troy, where
he was buried, the last one left the eastern end of the Congress
Matthew A. McGrath (son), succeeding to the brewing business,
but soon after closed it out. Born in the village and educated at
the Brother's academy, Troy; entered the mercantile world as a
grocer, locating on Twenty-fifth street, his present place of busi-
ness. Previous to 1894 he was one of the commissioners appointed
to collect the license fee from those selling liquor in the town of
Watervliet, a task that required some labor and travel. Always
interested in the prosperity of both the old village and the present
city, his influence, political and otherwise has always been on the
side of justice and right, and hold to the conviction that education,
intellectual and moral are the basis of good citizenship. One of
the few, who says what he means, and means what he says, though
often feeling the sting of ingratitude, his judgment of human
nature teaches him to deal kindly with his fellow man.
Hugh F. McGrath. Born and educated in the village, succeeded
with his brothers in the brewing business established by his father,
and later became identified with the firm of Riley & McGrath,
contractors and builders, with headquarters in New York city.
Street paving, bridge building, and the erection of concrete build-
ings constitutes the principal features. Mr. McGrath's personal
knowledge of details connected with that class of work, and his
personal supervision of same, enables the firm to make good on all
contracts that are awarded them, many specimens being in evi-
dence in New York city and other places. Interested in his home
city, he is at all times ready to assist in any movement that will
advance business interests.
Alfred Passonna. An esteemed citizen from Canada, and one
of the prosperous business men of the village. Heavy dealer in
grain and other merchandise, a noted dealer in horses, handling
blooded stock only, his principal market being New York city.
He was a member of the church of the Sacred Heart (French)
and largely and at all times deeply interested in its affairs; his
sudden death, while driving a spirited horse in New York in 1893,
deprived the church of a loyal member, and his family of a kind
and loving husband and father.
George H. Lewis, jeweler. In early days the only dealer in
his line in the village. A reliable merchant with a stock of goods
suitable to the trade. His son, William A. Lewis associated with
him, and was prominent. Later established the business in Troy.
J. M. Jones (bookkeeper for Roy & Co.) & W. F. Podmore
formed a co-partnership and opened a store of like character.
They received considerable patronage, and prospered by close atten-
tion to all details of the business. They moved to Troy about
1897, and soon after retired from business. Joseph Podmore
(father), died in 1861.
John T. Smith. From England in 1880; contractor, carpenter
and builder. Established himself in West Troy, in 1885. As a
new comer, unheralded and unknown his advent among the circle
of business men in this section has no precedent, taking into con-
sideration the volume of business he has been enabled to establish
in the few years residence. Over 100 old buildings have been
purchased, and in remodeling same he has not only lessened the
dilapidated appearance of many sections of the city, but created
beauty spots in many localities. A hustler, his energy and per-
severance, and with all his dare to do something, could be emulated
by others to the benefit of themselves and the community at large.
The city water supply. The condition that it is in, and the
detriment to, not only the individual, but in regard to the health
of the community, the tax payers should insist upon an early
improvement, and above all the plant should be owned and operated
by the city.
The electric light plant, also inadequate to the wants of a city
of this size. Everything connected with it is a back number;
modern machinery and lamps throughout the city should imme-
diately be installed. As it stands to-day, it is a costly asset, with-
out satisfactory results.
Excelsior Bag and Manufacturing Company, Incorporated.
Established in Troy, K Y., 1903 ; incorporated 1908. This com-
pany was located at the corner of Federal and Eiver streets, Troy ,
for some years and enjoyed a good business. In February, 1910,
the company bought the building No. 2328-2330 Second avenue,
and moved their business to this city. This change was brought
about on account of the better conditions, shipping facilities, etc.,
that the city offered. This concern is one of the most enterprising
in this section, having representatives in all large cities, it also
has a large export trade. The output consists of mechanics tool
bags, tool rolls, grass catchers, and many other specialties for the
hardware and the automobile trade. With an up-to-the-minute
shop, equipped with expensive machinery, coupled with close super-
vision, this company is in position to take care of all orders, with
care and dispatch.
James O'Connell, settled in West Troy in 1838. Trainman,
with the old Rensselaer & Saratoga Railroad, for years. Died in
1878. His wife, neice of Levy, the popular clothier, located in
early times, southeast corner, now Broadway and Twenty-third
James H. O'Connell. Born about 1865, prominent resident of
the city. Insurance and other business. Connected with the
Delaware & Hudson Railroad, and present supervisor of the city.
William J. O'Connell (son). Educated in the city, first occu-
pation newsboy for Mr. Ogden, bookkeeper and stenographer, and
at this date, foreman for the Excelsior Bag & Manufacturing
King Manufacturing Company. Plant located in the old
Chollar, Sage and Dunham building, northeast corner Broadway
and Eighth street. Their line consists of waste water traps, the
design and the application and use of same assures satisfactory
results. President, F. B. Durant ; secretary and treasurer, Henry
Maybe ; superintendent, John H. King. As this goes to print
they are closing out.
The United States Arsenal. The continuance of the same as
a military post being the one large mote in the eye of the gen-
eral public that is obstructing a sensible and clearly denned view
of the situation to the detriment of the mercantile business, and
manufacturing interests of the city. I have reference to the
attempts of our citizens to secure from the government more work,
and a larger increase of employees at the post, with the view of
establishing better conditions for the future. The point aimed at,
and the modus operandi to gain the same, will never materialize.
As far as the government is concerned, it has passed its usefulness,
and the number of mechanics formerly employed, mostly residents,
that made the post of value to this section, never will occur again.
As a residential section, it is one of the finest in the city, and
utilized as such it would add better results than its continuation
under previous and present conditions. As a location for manu-
facturing plants, it is an ideal one, and if it became available, there
is not the least doubt that there are firms that would take advantage
of the opportunity to secure a location, and P. T. Barnum's idea,
that has done so much for Bridgeport, Conn., and given it a proud
position in the manufacturing world: viz., (that 100 small firms
of 100 employees) was of more substantial benefit that one large
one of 1,000 is correct, and the idea is worthy of consideration by
our citizens and Board of Trade. There is a possibility that the
government might be inclined to consider a proposition to dispose
of its useless possession. Citizens carefully consider the situation,
digest the matter, act as unbiased judgment dictates.
Ab urbe Conditi. We have been the most enviable community
of " taxpayers " in this State, and should receive from Tammany
Hall, their political bouquet of appreciation, for the economy
injected into municipal affairs of the city, through and by the well
directed efforts of the professional economists who have, and do
now represent the different departments of government, most of
whom were, and now are " non " taxpayers. The only city of its
size in the United States, where the board of police commissioners
overlook the fact that for the public benefit, the chief of the depart-
ment should appear in uniform. " If not, why not."
James Hamil Co. (Inc.), successors to Jas. Hamil, who estab-
lished in 1869 the stove business. Became one of the successful
merchants. The present company was incorporated January 1,
1910. Albert J. Danaher, president ; Owen Cullen, vice-president ;
Arthur Kennedy, secretary and treasurer. Hardware, plumbing
and roofing, the main business of the firm. Under the present
management new life has been instilled into every department,
a large field has been opened whereby an increase of trade will, in
the near future, tend to add to their already large patronage. With
up-to-date facilities the only concern in the city that carries a com-
plete stock of goods in their line, with courteous salesmen and
expert mechanics in all departments, patrons are certain of a
square deal on all contracts.
In reviewing the history of the early settlement of this locality
from 1793, when part of the farm owned by John Schuyler, Jr.,
was laid out as the village of Washington, it must be apparent to
those familiar with other settlements adjacent to it, that their
Dutch, Scotch and Irish ancestors made no mistake in the selection
of the site upon which to build their homes, and to establish in-
dustries that, as the country became more settled, it would become
in the near future a business center and prosperity follow. This
is borne out from the fact that the selection comprises the largest
acreage of level ground this side of New York, with direct com-
munication by water, and at that time there was a bright outlook
that other transportation facilities would materialize that would
enhance the value of their investment. With these ideas in mind
they seized the opportunity, and accepting the many hardships
that arise in the pathway of the pioneer, through energy, perse-
verance and indomitable will they reared the settlement of a farm
to that of a village of business activity, substantial homes erected,
mills, factories, stores and shops in operation, schools where chil-
dren received tuition, and with the church the day of rest afforded
an opportunity for all to listen to their pastor as he discoursed on
moral and religious topics. At this date, 1802, three ferries, Van
de Heyden's at Sixteenth street, Wandell's at Fifteenth street,
and Malon Taylor's at Fourteenth street, enabled travelers to cross
the Hudson on their way North or West as business or pleasure
demanded, and the prosperity of the settlement became known
beyond its border when, in 1805, one James Gibbons, a prominent,
influential and progressive merchant of Albany, seized the oppor-
tunity then presented, purchased the farm north from Washing-
ton, extending to Buffalo street (Broadway and Fifteenth), sur-
veyed and laid it out into lots, and called the place Gibbonsville.
The second link was forged that in the future was to add
strength to a chain of commercial enterprises that had previously
been established. Having entered the arena as a speculator in real
estate, and knowing from previous experience that inducements
must be offered or shown whereby manufacturers, merchants,
mechanics and others could be prevailed upon to settle in the new
territory, he conceived and carried out a project that through some
influence resulted in interesting the United States government in
purchasing twelve acres of land of his recent claim. Success
crowned the effort, and the United States arsenal was established,
located in Gibbonsville, Albany county, N. Y., July 14, 1813.
Building commenced the next year under the supervision of the
commander of the post, and Isaac Chapman, the first master
mechanic. Oxen were utilized in hauling supplies, etc. A wooden
fence at first enclosed the grounds. The stone wall was commenced
later and finished about the year 1844. Contractors, Learned &
Bingham. The first church, the Keformed Protestant Dutch, of
Washington and Gibbonsville, had been built in 1814 and dedi-
cated in 1816. Hank's bell foundry, flour mill, sattinet factory,
hat and other industries already established, the population in-
creased, and at the time of the incorporation of the village in
1824 there was one church, seventeen mercantile firms, three hotels,
with a ship yard in full bloom. The nucleus of the fleet of river
craft, the schooner John Silliman, had already made her intial
trip to ISFew York.
The business men of that period, foreseeing the steady advance
in the prosperity of the settlement, had in the year 1823 formed
the West Troy Company, purchased of John Bleeker and his wife
the Bleeker farm commencing at Buffal > street (Broadway and
Fifteenth), north to the Oothout farm (near Twenty-fifth street),
surveyed same and laid it out in lots, and named it West Troy,
forming the third link that if welded together would form a chain
of business activities that would add strength to the combination
and a stronger influence in commercial circles. Only one house
(history states) stood on the farm at that date, 1823. West side
of river, below Canal street (Broadway and Sixteenth), site of the
The families of the Schuylers, Dermotts, Sages, Dunlops, Elijah
Washburn, Smiths, Sweets, Burnetts, Greys, Stones, Kimberlys,
Lineys, Hitchcocks, Witmarsh, Oothouts, Bronk, Brown, Wheelers,
Evens, Abrams, Learneds, Chards, Hoveys, Lees, Meneelys, Wan-
dells, Myers, Hanks, Willards, Chapmans, Bostwicks, Powells,
Binghams, Lobdells, Fitchetts, Griffins, Dyers, Rundells, Silli-
mans, Robinsons, Tuckers, Samuel Patch, E. F. Hitchcock, Isaac
Hitchcock, Learned Haight, Larcums, Veiles, Oswalds, Clarks,
Morrisons, Blackmans, Nancie Vallence were some of the first
settlers of Port Schuyler, Washington and Gibbonsville, the most
influential and substantial business men prior to 1830. The com-
pletion of the canal from Rochester in 1824, and finished in 1825,
added to the volume of business already secured, increased river
freighting, giving the ship building industry then in its infancy a
brighter outlook for the future.
In 1836 Gibbonsville, including Washington, was incorporated,
and at that time the following persons were residents of West Troy
proper, that is, north of Buffalo street (Fifteenth street) : Aaron
De Graw, Francis Disable, Oscar Potter, Jerry Potter, Patrick
Rogers Clark Foss, Sol Greenman, John Savin, Michael Savin,
Ashael Potter, Edward Mallory, Mr. Hubbard, M. Levy, James
Brady, Asa Spaulding, ]ST. J. Van Arnum, H. L. Dann, Benjamin
Tinney, George Green, Dr. Ruggles, Mr. Strattan, John Reiley,
Orlando Lathrop, B. B. Griffin, O. L. Stebbens, E. M. Douglass,
Benjamin Clark, G. H. Servis, S. J. Lewis, E. J. Higgins, M. I.
Moe, James Edgerton, William McClellan, Charles Finn, Attorney
Houghtaling, Simeon Smith, David Burrus, H. Mattison, G. H.
Vosburgh, W. C. Bates, Samuel Wilgus, I. Getty, R. D. Potter,
Ed. Ellis, Billings Blakely, Harris Winfield Higby (school teacher
Fourth Ward), T. McGuyer, William Raymond, Dr. Shankland,
Herman Mather, W. Wager, James Coggeshall, A. Gilbert, James
Quackenbush, Alexander Jacque, Martin Witbeck, Myron R. Peak,
Alexander Lenway, L. Lansing, Dr. Van Alstyne, James Meneely,
Joseph James, T. Richards, Andrew Morrison, Daniel Hartnett,
Hollands, Hill, Perrigo, A. S. Lobdell, R. E. Gorton, Orin Dele-
ware, Pierce, Amos Salsbury, Nathan S. Hollister, Patrick Reilly,
John McCormick, James Brisban, Henry A. Brigham, James
Quackenbush, with few exceptions, every one prominent in and
connected with the industries and business interests of the village
with a spirit of liberality unknown or practiced by as large a
number of the citizens of this section since the year of 1875.
The panic of 1837 was a setback to the business of the country
and was severely felt by the business interests of the village. Col-
lections were slow, work at the post was lessened, employees laid
off, and to add to the other forces that entered into the derange-
ment of business interests of the mercantile circle (although the
officials of the old Watervliet Bank endeavored to stem the tide),
they were forced to succumb, failing in 1841. In that early period
ISTew York merchants gave heavy credits and long terms, and on
open accounts most of them allowed extension of time, and by
other methods assisted in lessening the evil effect that would have
prevailed had they done otherwise. Through these concessions
and the renewed activity that soon followed canal freights in-
creased, confidence was restored, the outlook became brighter, local
industries were given new life, freighting to river points below
and to ISTew York revived, population increased, new industrial
plants located within the circle, sunlight followed darkness, and
a season of prosperity once more was assured.
The enlargement of the canal added to its freighting capacity,
and up to the year 1850 found the village with a fleet of river
craft of over forty schooners, sloops and scows owned by the citi-
zens, captained by men of prominence, education and prestige.
Thirty wholesale lumber and timber firms had located within the
boundary line of the commonwealth, stove and other factories
were in full bloom, giving employment to home industry, the
social, moral and political situation was at its best, and the future
seemed bright for all.
From 1840 increased facilities added to the soundness of already
lucrative business, mechanics found profitable employment in all
branches of trade, new plants sprung into existence, new lumber
and other firms located and shared in the general prosperity, and
peace, contentment and happiness was everywhere apparent. Pos-
sibly the volume of business done and the financial success achieved
by the merchants herein located can safely be stated to have been
between the years of 1840 and 1860. In 1861, and during the war,
business received somewhat of a boom in this locality. Large
bounties were being paid, bounty jumpers were numerous in this
section, going from here to other places under the guidance of
the capper, enlisting, receiving the large bounty offered, and re-
turning to the village to perform the trick over again. Reaction
soon followed ; the blight came. The temple of industry built as
it were on a secure foundation, began to crumble. The master
architects who conceived and built the framework of the structure,
had long since closed their earthly existence. The extensive lum-
ber trade, so long a factor in the commercial success of the place,
furnishing employment for hundreds, had vanished, factories
closed their doors, the large army of lumber inspectors completely
wiped out of existence ; the stabling and grocery business located
on the dock (Whitehall street), the enormous revenue of which
for years had been of importance to the immediate prosperity of
the citizen, gone never to return, together with the immense mer-
cantile business on the same spot, and also on Side Cut (Twenty-
third street). That in 1896 — when the city of Watervliet was
incorporated — the whole business of the locality was demoralized,
not a vestige of its former prestige visible, nearly all of the in-
fluential and active business men of former years dead, and with
few exceptions none of their successors capable to grapple with
the business problems of the day, and only a shadow left of the
sunbeam of prosperity to remind us of the ability, integrity and
honesty of our ancestors, the self-imposed task is completed. If
the reader obtains any desirable information connecting his or her
family with the early pioneers or receives a moment's pleasure in
the perusal of the work, it will satisfy the ambition of citizen
JAMES THORN MYERS.
Wateeveiet, Albany County, N. Y., 1910.
James T. Myers
Everything That a Home Wears
R. C. REYNOLD S
All people may not inherit handsome
Colonial Clocks, but it is their
privilege to hand them down.
HE just pride, now so prevalent, in possess-
ing what belonged to the grandmother or
greatgrandmother should suggest, beyond
the mere present delight in owing good
furniture, the pleasure in our power to give future
generations. <f Men build up fortunes to leave be-
hind them. Why should they consider the house-
hold goods a matter of only one lifetime ? ^ The
R. C. Reynolds Big Modern Store sells Furniture
worthy to be handed down, and it is now exhibiting
Colonial Clocks — guaranteeing a perfect time piece
within the reach of very moderate purses, with a
price range —
$35.00 to $125.00
The latter price is for a 5-rod German movement clock in beau-
tiful mahogany case, with the celebrated dead-beat escapment,
a maintaining power, polished brass weights and pendulum ball,
white enameled dial, hand painted moon dial and a second hand.
It strikes the hour and half hour on the Westminster chimes on
fine-toned steel rods and peforms all the functions of clocks sold
at figures double the price we ask.
See the splendid exhibition on both our Main Floor
and Third Floor Front
R. C. REYNOLDS
Complete Home Furnisher
Monument Square TROY, N. Y.
Organized in Troy, N. Y., in 1850
Incorporated in 1884, moved their plant to
Colonie, outside the boundary line of
Watervliet in 1892
HE largest Plant in this
section manufacturing re-
fined Malleable Castings
of every description, employing a
large number of workmen, and by
its close proximity to the City, is a
valuable addition to its business
interests. :-: :-: :-: :-:
WILLIAM A. GRIPPIN, President
W. K. CHASE, Vice-President
AUGUSTUS VEGHTE, General Manager and Secretary
WALTER F. WITMAN, Treasurer
PHILIP J. SCHILLING, Assistant Secretary
Organized in 1904
fflThe firm consists of William N.
Sleicher and William E. Whitney.
•I Plant located West Side of Erie
Canal, Office on Third Avenue, North
of Twenty-sixth Street.
•J Output consists of Structural and
Ornamental Castings of every kind,
meeting a large demand throughout
New York, Vermont and Massachu-
setts. They employ four expert
designers and draughtsmen and a
large force of mechanics that enables
them to fill orders promptly.
J/%N 20 I!
History of the City
Of Watervliet, N. Y.
& 1630 to 1910 &