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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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33



He was born April 26, 1858, in Dover
Plains, Dutchess county, the grandson of
Wooster Chapman, and son of Hiram W.
Chapman, who first saw the light in the town
of Dover in 1829, and was for many years suc-
cessfully engaged in mercantile business in
Dutchess county. He had a store in Dover
Plains for nearly a quarter of a century, with
three or four different partners, and for more
than twenty years of the time he was post-
master there. His home, however, was in
Dover, whence he removed toAmenia in 1865,
where he owned a large farm, and after clos-
ing out his business at Dover Plains he spent
twelve years in agricultural pursuits. In 1877
he moved to Pawling, N. Y. , bought out the
assignments of Ballard & Peck, and continued
in mercantile business until his death in 1882.
He was the principal merchant in Dover
Plains, and possessing great energy and nat-
ural ability, accumulated a fine property. He
was a Democrat, though not very active in
politics; while in Amenia, he attended the
Presbyterian Church, but in Pawling he at-
tended the Methodist Church. He married
Cordelia Sheldon, daughter of Theodorus B.
Sheldon, also of Dover, and a well-known
farmer and blacksmith in that place. To this
union were born three children: Allie T., who
married William H. Arnold; George T. , our
subject; and William T., who was postmaster
under President Harrison for four years, and is
now deputy postmaster.

George T. Chapman was educated mainly
in Amenia Seminary, and also attended school
at Fort Edward, N. Y. , for over a year. On
leaving school, at the age of nineteen, he en-
gaged in farming in South Amenia for two
years; in 1877 went to Pawling with his father
and was with him as clerk until the latter's
death. At that time (1882) Mr. Chapman be-
came the head of the firm of George T. Chap-
man & Co. , the ' ' Co. " being the brother, Will-
iam T. , and his mother. In 1 889 he bought out
his brother's interest, and since that time Mr.
Chapman and his mother have been sole own-
ers. Mr. Chapman has enlarged the stock and
greatly increased the business, and is regarded
as one of the successful men of his locality.
He has always been a Democrat in politics,
and has taken quite an interest, in an unofficial
way, in the success of his party. On August
30, 1894, he was commissioned postmaster by
President Cleveland, and later he was appoint-
ed by the President, the Senate confirming the



514



COMMEMORATIVE BI06RAPEICAL RECORD.



nomination on December ii, 1894. He in-
clines toward the Methodist faith, contributing
to that Church, and in many ways he has shown
his loyalty to the best interests of the town.

In 1882 Mr. Chapman married Miss Sarah
White, daughter of Sewell and Nancy (Emeigh)
White, of Pawling, N. Y. , and to them ha%'e
been born four children: Mary Louise, Ella
Cordelia, Grace Sophia and George T., Jr.



JAMES R. KERLEY. No man, probably,
in Dutchess county is more worthy of rep-
resentation in a work of this kind than he
whose name introduces this sketch. He has
been identified with the agricultural interests
of the town of Red Hook, Dutchess county,
most of his life, and there owns a fine farm of
100 acres of land, equipped with good and
substantial buildings. The estate is one of
the most valuable in that section of the county,
and indicates in all its appointments the super-
vision of a man of intelligence and sound judg-
ment.

Our subject was born December 29, 1829,
at Tivoli, Dutchess county, and is a son of
James Kerley, who was born in the town of
Red Hook. His great-grandfather came to
the United States from Scotland, and here
married a lady who was a native of Holland.
The birth of their son, James Kerley, occurred
in Vermont, and when he had reached man's
estate he removed to Dutchess county, N. Y. ,
and wedded a Miss Miller, by whom he had
four children: Catherine, who became the
wife of Michael Leonard, a merchant of Co-
himbia county, N. Y. ; John, a farmer of 'Red
Hook town; James, the father of our subject;
and Hannah, wife of Edwin Greene, who was
4 farmer of Dutchess county and represented
his district in the General Assembly.

The father of our subject grew to manhood
upon the farm in Red Hook town, where his
parents had located soon after their marriage.
He married Miss Sarah A. Graves, a native of
Columbia county, where her father, Titus
Graves, engaged in farming. After their mar-
riage they made their home at Tivoli, where
the father engaged in merchandising until his
death, in 1830. His wife died in 1874. Their
family consisted of two sons: John D., a phy-
sician and farmer of the town of Northeast.
Dutchess county; and James R.

Our subject was but three months old when
his father died, and upon a farm he passed his



childhood days, attending the district schools
of the locality, finishing his education at the
Hudson Academy, after which he returned to
the farm. In September, 1854, he married
Eliza K. Pitcher, who was born in the town of
Red Hook, a daughter of Abram Pitcher, whose
ancestors came from Holland. In 1890 he
was called upon to mourn the death of his
wife, who was a most estimable lady. Six
cnildren graced their union: R. D., a farmer
of Red Hook town; Abram P., a chemist and
druggist of New York City; James E., a
painter; Charles G., a physician of New York;
John G., an agriculturist of Red Hook town;
and Mary E.

On October i, 1S62, Mr. Kerley was ap-
pointed Deputy Internal Revenue Collector
for his district, which position he held for
twenty-one years, during which time he also
engaged in the insurance business, and con-
tinued the operation of his land. Since that
period, however, he has devoted his time ex-
clusively to the cultivation of his farm. He is
an active, enterprising citizen, taking a lively
interest in Church and educational matters,
and is one of the stockholders of the academy
at Red Hook. In politics he is a stanch
Republican.



MATTHEW J. CASHIN is a prominent
_ and enterprising merchant of Wapping-
ers Falls, where he has built up a fine grocery
trade by honest dealing, courteous treatment of
his customers, and by carrj'ing the best stock
that the markets afford. He is a native of
Dutchess county, born in the town of Pough-
keepsie, December 11, 1859. The birth of
his father, James Cashin, occurred in County
Kilkenny, Ireland, and when a young man he
bade adieu to the friends and scenes of his
youth, and sailed for America, locating in
the town of Poughkeepsie, Dutchess county,
he here carried on agricultural pursuits up to
the time of his death. Here he wedded Cath-
erine Harold, also a native of the Emerald
Isle, and to them were born six children:
Matthew J., Thomas J., John F., William H.,
Edward C., and a daughter who died in in-
fancy. The mother is still living. The father
was a devout member of the Catholic Church,
and was a stalwart supporter of the Demo-
cratic party.

Mr. Cashin, whose name introduces this
record, waS reared upon the home farm.



COMMEMORATIVE BIOORAPHICAL RECORD.



515



where he was trained to habits of usefulness,
and after his education was completed in the
district schools, he and his brother Thomas
carried on the retail milk business, started in
the year 1876 by their father, carrying on that
enterprise until April i, 1886, when our sub-
ject sold out to his brother, and established
his present grocery store.

On October 31, 1883, Mr. Cashin was
united in marriage with Miss Margaret E.
Burns, who was born at Wappingers Falls,
and is the daughter of Peter Burns, a native of
Ireland. A family of four children have been
born to this worthy couple: Katie, James,
Mary and Joseph. The parents are commu-
nicants of the Catholic Church, and are highly
respected people. In his political views Mr.
Cashin coincides with the principles of the
Democratic party, taking an active interest in
the local campaigns of that organization, and
was trustee of the village for one year, after
which he resigned, preferring to give his entire
attention to his business interests.



JOHN R. SCHULTZ, a prominent agricult-
urist and dairyman of the town of Rhine-
beck, Dutchess county, was born April 26,
I S49, on a farm which has been in the posses-
sion of his family seventy-three years.

His great-grandfather, Peter Schultz, a na-
tive of Holland, came to America soon after
the Revolutionary war, and located in the
town of Rhinebeck. His son Abram, our sub-
ject's grandfather, made his home upon this
farm throughout his life. He married Miss
Shell, and had four children: Margaret, who
married Edgar Ratcliff, a butcher at Yonkers;
Julia, who married James Schryver, also a
butcher at Yonkers; Richard, our subject's
father, and one who died in childhood. Rich-
ard Schultz was born October 4, 18 19, and al-
ways lived on the old homestead. He was a
leading farmer of the vicinity, a Democrat in
politics, and a member of the Reformed Dutch
Church. He married Frances Rowe, a daugh-
ter of William M. Rowe, a well-known farmer
of the town of Milan. She was a member of
the M. E. Church from her childhood to her
death, which occurred February 13, 1895, her
husband surviving her only a few months, dy-
ing May 21 of that year. They had five chil-
dren, of whom our subject is the eldest. Will-
iam M. is a farmer on the old homestead; Edwin



resides in New York City; David E. died in
Rhinebeck March 23, 1857, and Julia F. mar-
ried Herman Brown, of Dutchess county, a
traveling salesman by occupation.

John R. Schultz grew to manhood on the
old home, and December 15, 1869, he married
Sarah A. Cronk, a lady of Welsh descent, the
daughter of Nathaniel T. and Aurilla (Hall)
Cronk, both of whom were natives of West-
chester county, where Mr. Cronk's father set-
tled on his arrival in this country from Wales.
Four children were born of this marriage: Car-
rie L. , the wife of William B. Traver, of Hud-
son, N. Y. ; Hattie F. , who is at home; Harry
R., who died December 12, 1883, and Edwin
B., now at home.

In his specialty of dairying Mr. Schultz is
among the leaders of his locality, as was his
father before him. For eighteen j'ears he has
sold milk in Rhinebeck at retail, but previous
to that he wholesaled it. His farm of eighty
acres is a beautiful one, commanding a fine
view of the Hudson. He and his wife are ready
sympathizers with all progressive movements
in their vicinity, and they contribute to the M.
E. Church. Politically he is a Democrat, and
an influential one; his intelligence and public-
spirit making his judgment valuable, he has
been commissioner of the town of Rhinebeck
for nine years.



AMILTON PRAY, who is at the head of
one of the important industries of the
town of Unionvale, Dutchess count}', was
there born in 1844, and was educated in the
schools of Amenia. On starting out in life
for himself, he first engaged in farming, but
later turned his attention to blacksmithing.
In 1890 he invented and patented an ice plow,
which has completely revolutionized the ice
trade in this country, and at once sprang into
public favor. It is designed for horse power,
and he established a factory at North Clove,
in the town of Unionvale, which he has run
to its utmost capacity. In 1892 he took out
other patents on the improvements in the plow,
which is one of the most important inventions
perfected in Dutchess county, and has lessened
the price of ice plows throughout the entire
country. Mr. Pray can safely be called the
father of the two cutter beams, known as a
marker and cutter beam combined. He is
justly entitled to a place among the leading



51G



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



inventors of the county, and has more than
ordinary ability as a business man. He is a
wide-awake, progressive citizen, fully abreast
with the times in every particular, and his
career has been one of honorable activity.

Andrew Pray, the grandfather of Hamilton
Pray, was a resident of the town of Dover,
and was a member of Asssembly from there.
He married Mary Duncan, and had ten chil-
dren: (I) Amy, who married Edward Ward,
and had nine children, Andrew, Thaddeus,
Mary, Frank, Hannah, Louisa, Sarah, Henry
and Edward; (2) Hannah, never married; (3)
Sarah, who married William Ross, and had
six children, John, Mary, Delia, Andrew,
Washington and Duncan; (4) David, who
married Sarah Stephens, and had two children,
Richard and Mary; (5) Mary, who married
Josiah Dickerson, and had three children, Will-
iam H., Wilhemina and Estella; (6j Martha,
who married Isaac Stephens, and had two
children, Mary and Henry; (71 Albert, who
married Margaret B. Wyman, and had six chil-
dren, Hamilton (subject of this sketch), Mary
L., Emma P., Blanche, Andrew and Alber-
tine; (8) George, who married Nancy Baker,
and had five children, Elias, Lavinia, Martha,
George and Seward; (9) Andrew, and (10)
John, who never married.

David Wyman, the maternal grandfather
of our subject, was a resident of the town of
Clinton, and a mechanic. He married Lorana
Lapham, and had nine children, namely: Lor-
anda, who married David Donald; Lapham,
who married Susan Woolsey, and had eleven
children, Lorana, Holmes, Henry, Jane, Lor-
anda, Lorenzo, Alice, Frank, Clifford, Nelson
and Charles; John, who never married; Tacy,
who married Jacob Rider, and had one child,
Wyman; David never married; Phebe, who
married Albert Bullard; Solon, who married
Mary Woolsey, and had two children, Dick
and Don; Harris, who married Elizabeth
Tompkins, and had one child, George; and
Margaret, who married Albert Pray.

Hamilton Pray was united in marriage with
Miss Sarah E. Gregory, who was born in the
town of Dover, Dutchess county, and was
educated at the Clove, in Unionvale town.
Five children were born to them, namely:
Albert G., born in 187S; Mary L. , born in
1880; William H., born in 1884; Andrew G.,
who was born in 1885 and died in infancy; and
David H., who was born in 1S95, and also died
in infancy.



Philo Gregory, the great-grandfather of
Mrs. Pray, was a native of New London,
Conn., and a farmer by occupation. He had
two sons, Samuel and Philo. The former was
born and educated in the town of Unionvale,
Dutchess county, and followed agricultural
pursuits. He married Miss Ann Burton, a
daughter of Daniel and Naomi Burton, and to
them were born six children: Elizabeth, who
became the wife of Orville Le Due; Silas, who
first married Eliza Sheldon, and after her
death wedded Phcebe Emigh; Sarah, who re-
mained single; William, the father of Mrs.
Pray; Naomi, who married Charles Brazer;
and Charles, who married Lydia Thayer.

William Gregory is a native of the town of
Dover, Dutchess county, and throughout life
was engaged in farming and minmg. Socially
he holds membership in the Masonic Lodge at
Shekomeko. He was joined in wedlock with
Miss Lucy J. Lee, a daughter of Lyman and
Harriet (Soule) Lee, farming people of the
town of Dover. Five children graced this
union, namely: Mary L., born in Dover
town, in 1851, wedded Theodore Nickerson,
and had two children, Ella and Willie; Sarah
E., born in 1853, wife of the subject of this
sketch; Harriet A., born in 1855, married
Adelbert Terwilliger, and has three children,
Leander, Frank and Effie; George L. , born
in 1866, engaged in farming, and married to
Lillie Babcock; Carrie, born in 1869, the wife
of John P. Ham, by whom she has one daugh-
ter, Mary.

On the maternal side, Mrs. Pray traces her
ancestry back to John Lee, a native of Con-
necticut. His son, Hezekiah Lee. was born,
reared and educated in Connecticut, and was
a farmer by occupation. He served his coun-
try in the war of 18 12. By his marriage with
Miss Jane Wilson, he had the following chil-
dren — Peter; Reuben; Lyman, the grand-
father of Mrs. Pray; Sallie, who married John
Chamberlain; Rosanna, who married Isaac
Jordan; Betsy, who first married a Mr. Bost-
wick, and after his death wedded Jason Cross;
Lucy, who married John Benson; Jeannette,
who married William Atkins; and Jennie, who
married Smith Perry.

Lyman Lee was a native of Kent, Conn., .
and was also an agriculturist. He married
Miss Harriet Soule, a daughter of Henry and
Abigail (Benson) Soule, and they became the
parents of ten children, as follows: Susan,
who married Austin Frink, a farmer, by whom



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



517



she had five children, George, Arthur, Albert,
Henrietta and Harriet; Lucy, the mother of
Mrs. Pray; Frances, who married Isaac Greg-
ory; Hannah, who married Lyman Benson
and has three children, John, Hattie and El-
mer; Senaca never married; Henry, a rail-
road employe, who married Sarah Raymond,
and had three children, Edwin, George and
Clara; Hezekiah never married; Harriet, who
married Peter Sliter, and has three children,
Ella, George and Mary; George remained
single; Josephine, who married Charles Sher-
wood, and has five children, Frankie (who
married Earnest Buckley), Fred, Bertha (who
married Bert SpencerJ, Anna, and Maude.



OHN D. HOWARD, who is now living
retired from active life in his pleasant home
in Poughkeepsie, was born in the town of
Washington, Dutchess county, September 22,

1835-

Edward Howard, the paternal great-grand-
father of our subject, was born Decem-
ber 24, 1724, and was one of the early set-
tlers of the town of Pawling, Dutchess
county. He married Phcebe Hart, who was
born May 3, 1735, and the names and dates
of birth of their children are as follows: Ste-
phen, May 26, 1753; Matthew, September — ,
1754; Ruth, February i, 1756; Mary, Novem-
ber 8, 1757; Richard, March 13, 1760; Sarah,
September 20, 1761; Edward, April 26, 1763;
Patience, November 8, 1764; Phoebe, Decem-
ber 8, 1767; Thomas, May 14, 1770; Benjamin,
June 14, 1773; John, December 21, 1774;
William, March 6, 1777. All the members of
this family married. The father died October
I, 1 80 1, and the mother on August 4, 1804.

Thomas Howard, grandfather of our sub-
ject, was born in Pawling, and married a Miss
Haynes. Their children were as follows:
Thomas, Patience, Anna, Lucy, Jane, Laura,
Sophia, and James (the father of our subject).

James Howard was born September. 2,
1804, in Pawling. On October 24, 1827, he
was married to Ann Dodge, who was born
August 24, 1806, also in Pawling. In 1847
they removed to Lagrange, where they spent
the remainder of their lives, the father dying
October 29, 1890, and the mother about 1879.
Their children were: Marie Antoinette, born
March 26, 1829, married September 11, 1849,
to Reuben S. Haight; Lucy Ann, born July 16,



1830, died January 26, 1863; Frances Helen,
born January i, 1832, was married August 25,
1863, to Dodge P. Blackstone; Caroline Au-
gusta, born October 23, 1833, married E.
Irving Hurd, April 28, 1859; John Dodge, born
September 22, 1835, married Adeline B.
Barnes, October 24, 1 861; Thomas N.,born
July 19, 1S39, died Ma^^ 13, 185 1; Jay, born
March i i, 1848, was married in the year 187 1,
to Ruth A. Halleck; Sarah Jane, born Septem-
ber 10, 1841, died December 22, 1858; Laura,
born August 7, 1844, died September 10,
1854; Zenobia, born January 7, 1845, died
February 8, 1851. One of these sons. Jay,
remained upon the farm in Lagrange with his
father until the latter's death, they being as-
sociated in their work for nearly fifty years.
Jay Howard was married in Stamford, N. Y.,
in 1 87 1, to Miss Ruth A., daughter of Samuel
Halleck. She died October 26, 1874, leaving
three children: Frank, Kathryn and Ruth
A., all of whom are at home with their father.

John D. Howard, the subject of this sketch,
received a good common-school education in
the schools of Lagrange; and at the Nine Part-
ners School, also attending a private school in
Washington township. On October 24, 1861,
in Lagrange, he was married to Adeline B.,
daughter of William Barnes. The children
born of this union are: Sophia, who married
Nicholas Flagler, and has two children — Ethel
and Sophie; James, who married Ella Acker-
man, and has two children — John and Willard
D.; Lucy, who married Charles Stark, and has
two children — Howard and James; Annie, who
married Henry Taylor; Sally, Mary and Ade-
line. Of these, Sally was a professional nurse,
and for three years was superintendent of
nurses at the Womans Hospital, corner of
Forty-ninth street and Fourth avenue, New
York; she was married in February, 1897, to
Dr. Burch, of the city of Washington, and re-
sides there. Sophia, Lucy and Annie were
for a time teachers in Dutchess county, the
last named being a graduate of Linden Hall,
Poughkeepsie.

Mr. Howard has spent the greater portion
of his life in agricultural pursuits, but in 1890
left his farm in charge of his son, and went to
West Superior, Wis., where he remained two
years. Since his return he has miade his home
in Poughkeepsie, and is not now engaged in
any active employment. His wife departed
this life June 14, 1886. Mr. Howard has been
a Republican ever since the formation of the



518



COMMEMORATIVE BIOOSAPHICAL REVORD.



party, and has worked for its interests. He
was supervisor of the town of Lagrange for
three terms, and has always been an enterpris-
ing, public-spirited man.



HENRY VAN BENSCHOTEN. The sub-
ject of this sketch, one of the most prom-
inent agriculturists of Dutchess county, was
born on the old homestead in the town of
Lagrange, June 6, 1822.

Elias T., father of our subject, was also
born on the old homestead, December 27,
1783. He married Miss Cynthia Velie, Sep-
tember 10, 1807. She was born October 5,
1786. Their children were: John E., born
December 5, 1808, died March 6, 1873; Philip,
born February 10, 181 1, married on February
20, 1840, to Miss Hannah Thorn, and they
had one child. Thorn, born February 17,
1 84 1; Sarah, born January 21, 181 3, died
February 13, 1830; Harriet, born February
23, 1815, became the wife of Aris I. Vander-
bilt October 19, 1841, and died June 13, 1869;
Eliza, born March 3, 18 18, married J. Harry
Pettit, September 4, 1844, and died January
>^. •'^Qj; Jemima, born November 29, 18 19,
married Dr. W. H. Hopkins February 5, 1840;
Henry, born June 6, 1822, married Miss Mary
Jane Ver Valen December 9, 1857; Cynthia,
born May 9, 1824, married David H. Mulford
October 22, 1857; Elias, born August i 5, 1826,
married Cornelia Harris December 9, 1857,
and for his second wife Sarah L. Wooster,
January 6, 1875; Jane, born in August, 1S28,
died December 19, 1866.

Mr. Van Benschoten was well known and
highly respected. Tall, erect, and remarkably
active, physically he was a type of man with
whom we associate the stirring events of the
early history of the country. He was an ex-
cellent citizen and neighbor, and his uniform,
genial temperament made his presence always
attractive in the social circle. By his industry
and business capacity he acquired a handsome
competence, and became one of the largest
land owners in his section of the country. His
entire life was spent on the old home in La-
grange, and he was a member of the Presby-
terian Church.

Tunis Van Benschoten, the grandfather,
was born October 9, 1755, and was married
August 23, 1775, to Miss Elizabeth Van Der-
burgh, who was born October 13, 1759. He
departed this life December 23, 1835, and his



wife December 31, 18 19. Their children were
as follows: Jemima, born July 13, 1776,
became the wife of Oliver Green; Henry, born
August 30, 1778, married Miss Mary Jackson,
and died September 25, 1832; Elias T; Sarah,

born January 8, , died September 5,

1803. Tunis was an elder in the Hackensack
Church. He owned the first one-horse pleas-
ure wagon in Lagrange. He was born upon
the old homestead now owned by our subject.

The great-great-grandfather of our subject
was Elias Van Banschoten, as the name was
first spelled. His son, Elias, Jr. , owned the old
place, which was deeded to him by his father
in 1738, through Gideon Ver Vealin, great-
grandfather of Mrs. Van Benschoten. The
deed is now held by our subject.

The children of Dr. W. H. and Jemima
Hopkins were: Harriet, born May 18, 1841,
married Richard Titus; Elias, born September
3, 1843, married Miss Emily Field; John, born
July 8, 1845; Elizabeth, born May 16, 1848,
died in infancy; William, born February 28,
1850, married Miss Ida Sayles. These chil-
dren were born to Mr. and Mrs. Pettit: Sarah,
June 30, 1845, married James O. Conklin;
James, October 4, 1846, married Miss Ella
Flagler; Cynthia, January 27, 1849; John H.,
November 10, 1850, married Miss Maria Bab-
cock; Janie, January 26, 1862. The children
of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Van Benschoten were:



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