James P Snell.

History of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : online

. (page 186 of 190)
Online LibraryJames P SnellHistory of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : → online text (page 186 of 190)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

at the expense of another or the sacrifice of principle.

Hi- wile -urvives him. and hi- children are Sarah

Ann deceased), who was the wife of Henrj Carpen-

iroline, died young; Umira, became tie wife

of Richard Stephens, of Ottumwa, Iowa ; Catharine,

wa- united in marriage to Edward Skinner; Emeline,

the wife of Louis Labar; Susan (deceased .

wa- the wiie of Andrew Trimmer, of Anita. < lass Co.,

Iowa David Mat-. .vif. (Jacob: ah k William

Margaret, « il'c of .lames I lendcrshot; and Josephine,

H if of .lames I'itt-,


Hi- father, Henry Tunison, was a carpenter by trade,

and settled in Mansfield, from Hunterdon County,

about the year 1812, where he bought a lot of some

thirty acr f land. < in thi- he resided the remain-


sc&i/i^j o^^-

der of his life, but still worked at his trade. He died
at the age of seventy-one year-, on Sept. 23, 1839.
Hi- wife, Agnes, died April 22d, the same year, at

..I sixty-four years. Their children were

( lornelius, Sarah, Tunis 11.. .Mary. Johnson .1.. I

bers, Elizabeth, and Rebecca. Tunis II. Tuni-oii,
sou of Henry and Agnes Tunison, born in Hunterdon
County. Am.'. 15, 1801; married. Sept. 25, 1824, Mary
Ann, daughter of Henry Rockafeller, of Hunterdon.
She was born Dec. :!■">. l^nT. He learned the carpen-
ter'- trade with hi- father, which he followed tor a
short time after his marriage. He then began farm-
ing, and for several years lived on rented farm-. In
1846 he purchased ninety-six acres of hind in the
northeastern part of the town-hip of Mansfield, to

w Inch he afterward- added twenty-tive acre-, ami this
property he owned the remainder of hi- life, and upon

ii he resided most of the time, [n 1849 he wa- elected

steward of the Warren County | r-house by the

board of freeholders, \\ Inch office he hi Id by re-eh c-
tion for five years. [nl856hev ctedfor

the -am' position, and served for live years more.

His judicious man. cement of the affairs at the poor-

house w.re satisfactory during the continuance of his
tin years' service,and he left the place with tl

wishes of the public, and with credit and honor to

himself. Mr. Tunison was a man of temperate



habits, good influence, and, so far as his means would
permit, a liberal contributor to benevolent objects.
He was one of the founders of the Presbyterian
Church at Rockport, and for many years prior to his
decease an elder in that church. His wife was a mem-
ber of the same church, and survives in 1880, residing
on the homestead.

He was somewhat active in local politics, and held
several official positions iu Mansfield. He acted as
constable for some time, and was one of the township
committee, and, under the old law, he was appointed
justice of the peace, and held the office for several
years. He died Feb. 27, 1877. His children are Sa-
rah, wife of Charles Beatty ; Mary, whose first hus-
band was Samuel J. Konkle, but is now the wife of
John S. Ball ; Salinda, died at the age of eight years;
Henry R. ; Elizabeth, died at the age of fifteen ;
Emma, wife of Jacob Frome ; Almira, wife of Joseph
Woodhull ; and Davis C.

Henry R. Tunison was born Jan. 19, 1834. For
some fouryearshe assisted his father at the county poor-
house, and on Dec. 20, 1854, he married Ruth H.,
a daughter of William Woodhull, of Morris Co.,
N. J., who was a descendant in regular line from
Richard Woodhull, a cavalier of Charles I., of Eng-
land. After the demise of the king, in 1648, Rich-
ard emigrated to Brookhaven, L. L, of which he
became the proprietor in 1656, and erected his man-
sion, where his lineal descendants have ever since kept
the possession. The property is now owned by Rich-
ard Lawrence Woodhull, seventh in descent from the
progenitor. The line of Woodhull is established still
further back to Valteris Flandaremus, who was created
first baron of De Wahull by William the Conqueror,
in 1066.

Henry R. Tunison's wife died Oct 12, 1869, and for
his second wife he married, Aug. 16, 1871, Anna,
daughter of John and Eliza (Corwitho) Dickerson, of
Schuyler Co., N. Y. Her grandfather, James Dick-
erson, removed from Morris Co., N. J., about 1817, and
settled in Hector, Schuyler Co., N. Y., where she was
born, and where her parents reside in 1880. By this
marriage they have a daughter, Mary Emma. After
his marriage, Mr. Tunison resided on his father's farm
for twelve years, and for nine years following resided
in Hackettstown, where he worked at the trade of
carpenter and joiner, which he began at the age of
eighteen. In 1878 he was selected as steward of the
Warren County poor-house, and by re-election is the
incumbent of that office in 1880. During his first
year he reduced the expenses of that institution some
four thousand dollars from those of his predecessor,
and has continued a reduction from year to year,
without in any way taking from the comfort of the
inmates. Both he and his wife are members of the
Presbyterian Church and promoters of kindred in-


His great-grandfather, George Weller, supposed to
have been born in Germany, settled in the township
of Washington, Warren Co., about the middle of the
eighteenth century, erected in the year 1769 a house

on his homestead, which has been in possession of the
family since. On this homestead, and in this house,
his grandson, Jesse Weller, born Aug. 7, 1804, lived
from infancy to old age, and died Oct. 30, 1877.
Peter, son of George Weller, born Jan. 24, 1761, on
the homestead, married Catharine Wine Gardner,
who was born in 1761 and died Feb. 28, 1828. He
died March 7, 1855. Their children were Peter, born
May 22, 1784; Elizabeth, born in 1786 ; George, born
in 1788 ; Anna, born in 1790 ; Sarah, born in 1791 ;
Ann, born in 1793 ; Samuel, born in 1795 ; Joseph,
born in 1797 ; Elisha, born in 1800 ; and Jesse, above

Of these children, Peter is father of our subject, and
married Anna, daughter of John Strader, Dec. 1,
1805. She was born Dec. 18, 1784. The children
born of this union were Mary, wife of Richard Em-
mans ; Henry S., deceased ; Catharine, wife of Isaac
Bryant ; Abraham W. G. ; Cassandra, wife of Elisha
Coen ; James ; Isaiah, deceased ; Daniel.

After his marriage Peter Weller rented a farm for
some time in Greenwich. About 1812 he purchased
one hundred and fifty-three acres of land near Ander-
son, in the township of Mansfield, upon which he re-
sided until his death, which occurred Feb. 9, 1850.



He was a man of correct habits, a zealous worker
in the temperance cause, ;in<1 one of the founders of
the Warren County 'J'emjieraiice Society. He was a
liberal supporter of church and kindred interest-, as-
sisted in building the brick Presbyterian church edi-
fice at Washington, and was an active member of the
church and Sunday-school for many years. He pri
ferred the quiet of business to political strife and office,
but, as a member of the old Whig party, he took a
somewdiat active part in local politics. He was unos-
tentatious in his manner, frank and outspoken in
what he had to say, and possessed integrity in all his


Abraham W. 1 I. Weller was born on the homestead,
in Mansfield, Nov. Ill, 1*14, in the possession of which
he succeeded upon the death of Ids father by pur-
chase of the Other heir- to their father's estate. He
lias added by purchase an adjoining eighty-seven

acres, making his present farm al t two hundred

and forty acres, which is crossed by both the Morris
Canal and the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western
Railroad, This farm i- one of the most desirable
Locations in the vicinity, and it- well-cultivated fields
and commodious buildings show to the passer-by the
thrift and intelligent management of the owner. On
Oct. 22, 1844, he married Elizabeth, daughter of
Moses Wolverton, who died Sept. !•"', IS45. For his
second wife lie married, May 21, 185(1, Lydia. young-
est child and daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth
(Bigler) King. She was horn Dec. 1, 1819. Her pa-
rents resided in Hetblchein township, Hunterdon Co.;
afterwards settled on a farm at Anderson, where her
father died April L'o, lx.'i'.i, having been born in 1770.
Her mother, born in 1779, died April 30, 1865.

The children of Mr. and Mrs. Weller are Eugene
and Mary Alice.

Mr. Weller ha- -pent hi- life as a farmer on the
place where he was horn. He has been a member of
the Presbyterian church at Washington since 1854,
and has officiated as elder. His wife is also a member
of the Same church. He has often been chosen to

represent the church in the Presbytery and Synod,

and formerly was active in Sunday-school work.
Mr. Weller, like his father, was a member of the

Whig party, and is now a Republican, although in no
way a seeker after place in the party. Be is num-
bered among the substantial farmers and reliable

citizens of the township in which he resides.


Andrew Miller whose father was the progenitor
Of the family here, ami settled in Newton, Su - e\

Co., from Gon ly about the beginning of the

eighteenth century came from Newton while a

young man, purchased and settled on about one
thousand acres of land near Peiinwell, on the load
hading from that place to Hackettstown, having his
house located where Samuel Yannatta now resides.

Here, during the Revolutionary war, he kept the
hospitable inn where the weary traveler might re-
frc-h himself and take a friendly glass. The great
Gen. Washington encamped with bis army upon

one part of this farm for a night, during one of his
marches in Northern New Jersey, and one of his men
died at the inn.

Andrew Miller was a generous, sociable, and kind-
hearted man of the old-fashioned times. His home
in the wilderness was a place of contentment and
comfort to him, and as the settlement became more
thickly peopled he was among the firs! to erect a log
school-house and employ a teacher to instruct the
children in the rudiment- of reading, spelling, writ-
ing, and the fundamental rales of arithmetic. During
the latter part of his life, believing that golden ore
existed in the adjoining hills, he spent much time in
prospecting on Schooley's Mountain for the precioUB
metal, but with no successful result. l"pou his farm

he resided during the remainder of his life. His wife

was Mi— Anthony, whose family was also among the
early settlers of the same valley. During the last
years of his life he was afflicted with blindness, but

80 devoted was he to the principle- of Christianity

that he osed to have Rev. Mr. Campbell, a Presbyte-
rian clergyman, ionic from Hackettetown and hold
services in his house, He died, at the advanced age
of ninety years, about 1829. Hi- wife died at the age
of sixty. Their children were Henry, Daniel, Polly,
Susan, and Philip i who was killed by falling off a
building where he W8S at work a- a carpenter .



Henry, eldest son of Andrew Miller, born Aug. 12,
1767, died Feb. 26, 1852. His wife was Ann, a
daughter of William Hann, and a granddaughter of
Jacob Hann, of Schooley's Mountain. She died Sept.
24, 1844. Their children were Andrew (deceased),
William (deceased), Sarah (died young), Philip (de-
ceased), Eliza (wife of Abram Vliet), Jacob H,
Caroline (wife of Simon Wyckoff, and resides in
Kansas), David, John C, George (deceased), and
Henry (deceased). Henry Miller came into posses-
sion of the homestead farm of his father, consisting
of some seven hundred acres. Upon it he erected
commodious buildings, having his house on the west
and some of his barns on the east side of the Mus-
conetcong River, the place now being owned by his
son, John C. Miller, and Samuel Vannatta.

Mr. Miller was a representative farmer, and put the
farm under a good state of cultivation. He was a
public-spirited man, and did his part well as a citizen
and neighbor. He gave the ground and helped to
erect a stone school-house on a part of his farm ; the
building is standing (in 1880), and maybe seen by
passers-by on the side of the highway. He was
among the foremost in building a Presbyterian
church at Pleasant Grove, on Schooley's Mountain,
of which both he and his wife were members. He
was known as a man of strict integrity, and possessed
that force of character which secured the esteem of
his fellow-men. He was an old-time Whig, and was
honored with nearly all the offices in his township.
He was drafted in the war of 1812, but furnished a
substitute, and his connection with the old State
militia as commander of a company gave him the
title of captain. Capt. Henry Miller was a member
of the grand jury in Sussex County which indicted
Peter Brakeman for murder.

Jacob H. Miller, eldest surviving son of Henry
Miller, was born on the homestead June 30, 1815.
During his minority he had limited opportunities for
any education from books, but after coming of age
he received private instruction from Judge Kern,
which he paid for with his own earnings. Early in
life he became practically acquainted with all branches
of farming, which he has followed since. On Dec. 1,
1843, he married Sarah, daughter of Samuel Mowder,
of Mansfield. She was born Feb. 5, 1824. For three
years after his marriage he rented the farm where he
now resides, -during which time (Jan. 22, 1844) he
was called to mourn the loss of his wife.

Subsequently he took a tour through the Western
States with a view of prospecting for settlement and
to improve his health. Returning, he kept a store
one year at Pennwell, and during that time, July 24,
1847, married Mary, daughter of Peter and Mary
Hagerty, of New Hampton. The children born of
this union are Sarah Ann, Henry, Mary, Catharine
(deceased), Jacob, Amelia S. (deceased), William H.,
Emeline, Stewart B., Elmer (deceased), and Maude

Following his second marriage he farmed for one
year on Schooley's Mountain, and then for three
years rented the farm where he now resides of his
father, who had then purchased it. This farm Mr.
Miller purchased of his father at the end of three years,
which contained one hundred and sixty-five acres,
one hundred of which he retains, and has resided on
since. This farm and its surroundings show the work
of an industrious and thrifty farmer. Upon it was dis-
covered a slate-quarry in 1880, which, from prospects
upon its opening, will vie with the best in the United
States for accessibility and the quality of slate. For
many years Mr. Miller has been a member of the
Grove Church congregation, on Schooley's Mountain,
and has acted as trustee.

Following in the line of his ancestors, he was for-
merly a Whig, and has been identified with the
Republican party since its organization. He has
been little connected with official duty, but was one
of the board of registers during the war, and has
acted as judge of election for six years.


John C. Miller, son of Henry and Ann (Hann)
Miller, was born on the homestead farm, where he
now resides, July 26, 1820. At the age of nineteen
he went into a store at Port Murray, and remained
there and at Easton, Pa., for one year. On March 3,
1842, he married Miss Hester, a daughter of Jacob
and Mary (Kitchen) Wyckoff, of Jackson Valley,
Warren Co. She was born March 25, 1822, and is a
granddaughter of Simon Wyckoff, the first settler of
the family in Jackson Valley, who came from Read-
ington, Hunterdon Co., in 1771, and was the son of
John Wyckoff, of that place. Their children are
Mary, wife of Hiram Vescilus, of Providence, R. I. ;
Ann Elizabeth, wife of Henry Marlatt, of Colorado ;
Emma, wife of William Anderson, of Mansfield ; Re-
becca ; Sarah, wife of Joseph Vannata ; and Edwin.
After his marriage Mr. Miller farmed for six years
for his father, during which time he was a partner
with Andrew M. Nunn in a store at Pennwell. He
sold a part of the land which he had purchased at
his father's death, leaving him one hundred and
eighty acres lying on the east side of the river. He
erected his present house in 1853, and his most sub-
stantial barn in 1873. Upon this farm he has resided
since his purchase, except for six years (1866 to
1872) he was a resident of Beattystown, and was en-
gaged in milling, mercantile business, and in hema-
tite-ore mining. Mr. Miller is one of the substan-
tial fanners and business men of Hunterdon County,
and everything about his well-appointed place shows
the work of industry, care, enterprise, and thrift.

Mr. Miller has always voted with the Democratic
party, and has been honored in both Lebanon and
Mansfield townships with the important offices of




committeeman and assessor. For twenty years he and
his wife have been members of the Pleasant Grove

Presbyterian < 'ii 11 nil, ami In- wa of the foremost

in the construction of the church and parsonage edi-

<3%£^ ^.^JtdZx—


fices of that place. He is a man of liberal ideas, and
li.-i-i ^iven his children tin' hem-lit of a good educa-
tion. His resolution and sterling integrity and bis
Bound judgment and practical ideas have given him

place among the most intelligent fanner- of his town-
ship and county.

llis grandfather, George Taylor, was one of the
early settlers of ECarrsville, in the township of Mans-
field, where he purchased and owned liming his life
a large property. He erected a grist-mill and a saw-
mill, which he run besides carrying on farming. He
was g man of enterprise, and contributed largely to

the thrift and prosperity of the Vicinity and township,

111 which he was a much respected and influential
citizen. Upon his death he left his large and valuable
estate to his onlj son, Jacob, father of our subject

Jacob Taylor resided on this property during his

life, carrying on the same interests as his fat hi i had
before him. He married Mary Bray, of which union
was born an onlj son, I leorge W. Taylor, whose poi
trait appear- in connection with this sketch. Jacob
Taj lor was :i mini of good busini ■ - ability and sound
common sense. He 'possessed in a high di

sense of justice in all his dealings, and bis correct
habits and sterling integrity gave him the confidence
of his fellow-citizi M-.

( reorge W.Taylor was born in theyear 1810. [nearly
life he became inured to work on the farm and in the
mill; learned those inestimable lessons of economy
ami industry which enabled him upon reaching man-
hood to exercise good judgment in the management
of the estate h-i't him by his father. He erected a

grist-mill, now to he seen at karr.-ville, in place of

the one built by his grandfather, made other improve-
ments on the property, upon which he continued to
reside during bis life, and where be carried on tin-
same pursuits followed by his ancestors of two gener-
ations. During his minority he had received a good
education wln.-h he unproved h-. reading in after
years. From early manhood he was interested in all

questions of importance in any way affecting local or
State legislation, and while a young man took an
active interest in the political c|iicstions of the day,
and - became prominent in the councils of the

Democratic party, of which he was a member. He
was honored by his fellow-townsmen with many po-
sitions of trust and responsibility in Mansfield, ami
at the age of thirty-live, in the year 1845, he was
elected to the State Senate, where he served his con-
stituency for three years in succession, and whereby
ins integrity of purpose and sound judgment he re-
tained tin nlidencc of his senatorial district, and

won credit and honor for himself as an honest and
upright representative of the people. He was a man
of practical ideas and self-reliance, and his opinion
was always based upon sound logic, and only ex-
pressed upon mature deliberation.

Mr. Taylor was possessed of line perceptive facul-
ties, and in all his doings sought to be on the side of

justice and arrayed against wrong-doing. He Could
not look upon corruption in business or polities but
with disdain, and regardless of men or party he stood
firmly intrenched in what he conceived to be the

right. He was interested in all worthy enterprises

Of a local nature, and SOUght to do his part in an

unostentatious way as a citizen. He was one of the

line. tm- in the bank at Washington and also at.

HackettBtown, where his counsel iii the manag
of the affairs of these institutions was always regarded
a- safe, « ise, and judicious. Upon the occasion of his
death, June 16,1872, the officers of the First National

Bank at Washington met, and with the late .lame- K.

Swayze as president and Judge Philip II. Hann as
cashier, passed appropriate resolution-.

Mr. Taylor, although not connected as a member
With any church, was a contributor to religion- work,

and especially wa- he known for hi- many kindnesses

and gifts to the | r and to tho-e in need, and upon

his death many who had often received from llis
bounty held him in dear remembrance. He married.

Feb. 9, I s ii". Miss Sarah, daughter of Benjamin and
Mary Weller Fritts, who survives him.



Independence contained, prior to the setting off
of Allamuchy, 37 T % square miles, or 24,096 acres. It
is bounded on the north by Frelinghuysen, on the
south by Hackettstown and Mansfield, on the east
and northeast by Allamuchy township. The Morris
Canal is the dividing line between Independence and
Hackettstown. The Jenny Jump Mountain forms
the border on the northwest, along the Frelinghuysen
line. Independence is eight miles long from the south-
east to the northwest end, and nearly six miles across.
The population in this year— 1881 — is a little over

The Pequest River winds its crooked and sluggish
way directly across the township from northeast to
southwest, which, with its many tributaries flowing
down from the high hills on each side, causes the
country to be well watered, and admirably fits it to
yield good crops of hay and all kinds of grain.


All of the township lying near the canal (the
southeast part) is composed of ranges of high hills and
deep gullies. On the road leading from Hacketts-
town northwest to Vienna, a steep hill, nearly a mile
long, has to be surmounted. When the top is reached
the land is found be rolling, but laid out in good
farms. As Vienna is approached, a long hill is de-
scended fully a mile in length. Then the beautiful
valley of the Pequest is reached, where may be seen
some of the finest farms in the county. Eough as the
uplands are, they afford abundant crops. The soil is
largely composed of limestone on the hills and hill-
sides ; in the valleys it is a dark loam, and needs but
little cultivation to be made to produce most bounti-
fully. The "Jenny Jump" Mountains is a high
range of hills bordering the township on the north-
west. The origin of its name is a matter of tradition.
Probably the most reliable account is, that as an old
settler was driving down the steep side of the moun-
tain his team became unmanageable, and, being in
great danger of being capsized, he called to his wife,
whose name was Jenny, to jump, which she did,
thereby saving her life. Be this as it may, the moun-
tains have borne this name far back of the memory
of any living man. The mountains slope down to
the Great Meadows, and their sides and summits are
mostly covered with timber.

' By S. 11. Iladloy.

t 1U18 in 18SO, when the cenaiiH waB taken.

In Independence there are many excellent grazing-
and stock-farms, and some enterprising farmers. Quite
celebrated throughout the country is the stock- and
dairy-farm of Dr. William A. Conover, known far and
near as the " Pohatcong Valley Stock-Farm." The
farm has been settled and cleared nearly one hundred
years, and is noted for its abundant crops of corn and
hay, its blooded Alderney cattle and excellent butter.
It derives its name from the fact that the Pohatcong
Creek has its source and fountain-head in a spring
upon this place. The Pohatcong flows west to Mans-
field; thence southwest through that, Washington,
Franklin, . and Greenwich townships, and empties
into the Delaware River about one mile below Car-
penterville. It furnishes power for a number of saw-
and grist-mills and distilleries.

Iron ore. is abundant in various parts of the town-
ship, and mines have been opened by Bulgin &
Swayze, near Vienna ; Azariah Davis ; and Johnson
I. Cummins, southwest of Vienna. None of the

Online LibraryJames P SnellHistory of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : → online text (page 186 of 190)