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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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For eight years after their marriage our sub-
ject's parents lived at Ancram, but in 1847
I they removed to a farm in the town of Stan-
ford, Dutchess county. In 1869 they went to
Pleasant Valley, there to pass their declining
years. The father was a man of influence in
his neighborhood, possessing the esteem. of all
classes of people, and for many years he was
a justice of the peace in the town of Pleasant
Valley, and held the office of assessor for many
years. He died May 12, 1888; his widow is
still living at Pleasant Valley.

Silas E. Card was only two years old when
he came to Dutchess county, and he was edu-
cated in the public schools of his vicinity and
and in the seminary at Amenia. In 1865 he
came to Poughkeepsie to engage in business,
and after spending fifteen years in the store of
Seward & Hayt he bought an interest in George
P.Satterlee's merchant-tailoring establishment,
at No. 280 Main street. He was admirably
qualified for success in his chosen line, and
held a high rank among the enterprising mer-
chants of his vicinity. On November 4, 1874,






in the town of Stanford, he married Miss E.
Belle Ailing, a daughter of John T. and Frances
(Mabbett) Ailing, and five children were born
of this union: John A., born May 20, 1877,
graduated from the Poughkeepsie high school
at the age of sixteen, and is now completing
his course in medicine at the College of Physi-
cians and Surgeons, New York; Frank M.,
who died when one year old; Mary E., born
December 5, 1882; George H., born July 17,
18S6; and Albert N., born May 14, 1890.

In politics Mr. Card was a Democrat, and
he took an influential part in the work of the
organization in his locality. He was the can-
didate of his party for mayor in 1894; but that
was a year of tribulation for Democrats, and
he with all the others on the ticket suffered
defeat. He was one of the City Alms House
commissioners for ten years, and was an Ex-
empt Fireman of Phcenix Hose Company No.
I , of which he was treasurer. In the Masonic
order he was a member of Triune Lodge No.
7S2, Poughkeepsie Chapter and Commandery,
and of the Royal Arcanum, and was District
Deputy of Dutchess county. He was a promi-
nent member of Washington street M. E.
Church, at the time of his death holding the
office of steward.


member of the firm of McFarlane & Hig-
nell, the well-known boiler manufacturers,
of Fishkill Landing, Dutchess county, is among
the most prominent of the younger business
men of that place.

The family name is English in its origin,
and our subject's paternal grandfather, Joseph
Hignell, came from England in early man-
hood, and was married in this country to Mrs.
Rachel Lawson, a widow. Their son, Daniel
L. Hignell, our subject's father, was born at
Barnegat, N. Y. , April 28, 1833, learned the
blacksmith's trade in youth, and is now the
Fishkill Landing Machine Company's foreman.
He married Miss Mary Odell, who was born
November 23, 1832, near Cold Spring, Put-
nam county, the daughter of Elijah and Sa-
brina (Perry) Odell. The Odell family is an
ancient one, and this branch was established
in this country in Colonial times. Our sub-
ject was the eldest of three children, the others
being Millard Fillmore Hignell; and Mamie,
who married James E. Tomlins, and resides at

Tuxedo Park.

James H. Hignell was born at FishkilC
Landing, October 22, 1856. He has been
identified with the village all his life, receiving
his education in the public schools, and at
thirteen entering upon his practical business
career. Until the age of eighteen he worked
at different employments, and then followed
theharness maker's trade about sixyears; bur, his
health becoming impaired he left this occupa-
tion in 1880, to take a position as bookkeeper
with the late John J. Herley, the boiler manu-
facturer. On the death of Mr. Herley in the
spring of 1892, Mr. Hignell formed his present
partnership, and purchased the business from
the estate. Their work embraces not only
boiler-making, but the manufacture of tanks
and everything in that line, and their trade is
extensive, reaching throughout New York State
and to various portions of the South and West.

On February 2, 1S81, Mr. Hignell married
Miss Kate Chase, a native of Glenham, N. Y.
Her father, Henry Chase, came from Switzer-
land; her mother, Ann Roe, from Ireland, and
their marriage took place at Fishkill Landing.
Mr. and Mrs. Hignell are prominent members
of the Reformed Dutch Church at Fishkill
Landing, and are interested in all that pertains
to social and religious progress. They have
one daughter, Lelia Ella, born August 17,

Politically Mr. Hignell is a Republican.
He is a charter member of River View Lodge
No. 560, I. O. O. F., has passed through the
chairs, and is now trustee and treasurer. On
June 18, 1896, he helped to organize a lodge of
the Improved Order of Redmen at Fishkill
Landing, and was elected to the order of
Sachem. On March 18, 1897, he was elected
treasurer of the general hospital of the town of
Fishkill, N. Y. ; was also elected treasurer of
the executive committee.

WILLIAM E. HAVENS, the efficient su-
perintendent of the Fishkill Electric

railway and the Citizens Electric railway of
Fishkill-on-Hudson, is one of the rising young
practical electricians of his locality. His al-
ready wide and varied experience in the
mechanical arts has especially fitted him for
the understanding of the difficulties which at-
tend the application of electricity to business
uses, while he possesses also rare gifts as an
organizer and manager of men.

He is a son of William H. and Anna



(Dixonj Havens, and grandson of Edward
Havens. His father, who is a native of
Oswego, N. Y., born July 4, 1840, is now a
well-known engineer. He had three sons —
Frederic Dare Havens, Charles P. and William
E. — and one daughter — Jennie Lee. Our
subject was born in Oswego, N. Y., August
24, 1863. His early education was obtained
in the public schools of his native city, also in
Rome, N. Y., and at the age of thirteen he
began to learn photography, at which he
worked for about three years. He then spent
a number of years in different pursuits, learn-
ing in each one some lessons which were to
prove of benefit in after life, possibly in une.x-
*pected ways. He spent one year in a machine
shop, three years in the business of steam en-
gineering at Rome, two years as special col-
lector of the Howe Sewing Machine Co., two
years in the National Express Co., and one
year with the Edison Electrical Illuminating
Co., at Rochester, N. Y. He then went to
Syracuse, N. Y., and passed two years in the
employ of the Third Ward Electric Street
Railway Co., and their successors, the Consol-
idated Street Railway Co., and later held the
position of night engineer of the New York
Central & Hudson River railroad depot at
Syracuse for six months. On July 6, 1892,
he came to Matteawan as electrician for the
Citizens and the Fishkill Electric Railway
Companies, and in September, of the same
year, he was appointed superintendent of
those lines.

Mr. Havens has a pleasant residence on
Main street, Fishkill-on-Hudson. His wife,
whom he married June 10, 1885, formerly
Miss Minnie E. Moore, is a daughter of An-
drew W. and Ovanda (Craig) Moore, of Cohoc-
ton, Steuben Co., N. Y. , and they have three
children: Catherine E., Jennie Lee and Will-
iam Henry. Mr. and Mrs. Havens are prom-
inent members of the Episcopal Church at
Fishkill, and are ever ready to sustain any pro-
gressive movement. In politics he is a Repub-
lican, and he also takes an active interest in
fraternal society work as a member of Melzin-
gah Lodge No. 304, K. of P., and Court Bea-
con No. 296, F. of A.

BENJAMIN HAMMOND, one of the resi-
dents of the village of Fishkill-on-Hudson,
Dutchess county, is the proprietor of the exten-
sive establishment known as Hammond's Slug

Shot and Paint Works, and a manufacturer and
wholesale dealer in paints, oils, chemicals and
similar commodities, his trade extending in his
specialties to all parts of the United States.

Mr. Hammond was born in Kidderminster,
Worcestershire, England, July 12, 1849. His
father, Benjamin Hammond, the son of Levi
Hammond, was born in that locality in 18 17,
and in 1 848 married Miss Mary Twemlow, for
his second wife. Our subject is the oldest of
the five children of this union, the names of
the others being Mary, Levi, So()hia and
Sophronia Warren. In 1855 the father came
to America, bringing his family, and after
locating for a time in New York City, he re-
moved to Carlinville, Macoupin Co., 111., where
he remained until 1858. Returning east, he
made his permanent home in Brooklyn, where
he died in November, 1876. The son began
his business life with Lazeil, Marsh & Gardi-
ner, at No. 10 Gold street. New York City, as
office boy, and after nine years with them he
went, in 1873, to Mt. Kisco, in company with
Charles S. Ware, who had purchased the drug
business of Mrs. Dr. Fenton, a sister-in-law of
the late Gov. Fenton, of New York. The
business was continued and developed until
the fall of 1884, when Mr. Hammond removed
to Fishkill Landing and founded his present
establishment. Mr. Hammond is one of the
pioneers in the United States in the manufac-
ture of economic insecticides, and this particu-
lar branch of his business is known all over the
world, as he ships his product to London
(England), Auckland (New Zealand), Nova
Scotia, and all other parts of Canada. His
works are located on the N. E. corner of Long
Dock Landing, opposite the N. Y. & N. E.
depot, and near the H. R. R. depot and New-
burg Ferry, and the business under his judi-
cious and vigorous management has been on
the increase ever since its establishment. In
politics Mr. Hammond is a Republican. In
Mount Kisco, Westchester county, in connec-
tion with Stephen and Samuel Carpenter, he
established a local newspaper, known as the
Moil III Kisco ]\'c'fk/v, of which he was the ed-
itor for several years. He was chairman of
the Republican town committee, was elected
justice of the peace of the town of New Castle,
and a member of the board of education of the
Mount Kisco Union Free School District. In
the incorporation of the village of Mount Kisco
he took an active part, and obtained the so-
briquet of " Prime Mover."



In Mount Kisco Mr. Hammond met Miss
Isabel Monilaws (who subsequently became
his wife), a woman of refinement and culture,
the daughter of the Rev. George Monilaws, of
Somers, Westchester county, in which village
she was born. They were married by Rev.
Dr. C. W. Baird, of Rye, July 25, 1S75, and
three daughters, all born in Mount Kisco,
were the issue of this marriage: Marion Isa-
bel, Grace Twemlow, and Elsie. Mrs. Ham-
mond died at her home, " Spy Hill," Fishkill
Landing, N. Y. , May 28, 1892, and was buried
in the Fishkill Rural Cemetery, Fishkill, N. Y.
On April 6, 1897, Mr. Hammond was again
married, his second wife being Miss Laura An-
thony,daughter of the late Richard Kip Anthony
and Ann Bowie Dash, of New York, the cere-
mony having been performed by the Rev.
Charles W. Fritts, D. D., of Fishkill-on-Hud-
son. New York.

Mr. Anthony took up the ordinary duties
of a good citizen, and interested himself in the
development of his locality. In October,
1889, at the formation of the Union Free
School District of Fishkill Landing, he was
elected a meinberof the boardof education, and
as clerk to the board took a leading part in the
planning and building of the splendid school
building which was erected in 1890-91. In
1S94 Mr. Hammond was elected president of
the board. For three successive terms he was
elected president of the village of Fishkill
Landing, and close attention to all the details
of the position was the marked peculiarities of
his term of service. He has served as town
auditor, and while a pronounced temperance
man was elected, after a hard contest, a mem-
ber of the Town Board of Excise, with a
handsome majority. The village of Fishkill,
because of its situation between great brick
yards, is proverbial for its many saloons and
liquor shops. Mr. Hammond is a member of
the Reformed Dutch Church, and an officer of
the same, being for years a Sunday-school
teacher, a deacon and an elder. His residence
is finely located on Park avenue, overlooking
Newburg Bay, surrounded with ample grounds,
well-kept and planted with beautiful flowers,
shrubs and hedges.

GILMAN D. HOLMES, a prominent citi-
zen of Matteawan, Dutchess county, has
been for many years the master mechanic of
the N. D. & C."R. R., in charge of the build-

ing and repair shops at Dutchess Junction,
and has proved himself an able e.xecutive of-
ficer in that department, uniting in a rare de-
gree practical knowledge of the details of the
work with the faculty of managing effectively
a large force of men.

He is a "Yankee" by birth, his parents,
Lewis and Mittie (Osgood) Holmes, being resi-
dents of Francestown, N. H., where his fa-
ther was a well-known farmer and miller.
There were three children: Sarah A., Mason,
and Oilman D.

Oilman D. Holmes was born November
29, 1842. The public schools of his native
place furnished educational advantages, of
which he made good use until he was twenty
years old, when he began to learn the trade of
machinist in the railroad shops of the N. N.
H. R. R. , now the Boston & Maine R. R.
Eight years there gave him a thorough mas-
tery of the business in all its branches, and he
then came to Dutchess Junction, and was em-
ployed by the N. D. & C. R. R. for about
fifteen years before his appointment, in 1885,
to his present responsible position in the car
shops. His ten years of faithful work in that
place completes a term of a quarter of a cen-
tury in the service of the same road. He is
loyal to the interests of his fellow workers as
well as to his employers, and is a member of
the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers.

Mr. Holmes married Miss Emma S. An-
son, daughter of Nathan Anson, a native
of Stanfordville, and his wife, Catherine
(Cashner), a descendant of a well-known
family of Rhinebeck. The pleasant home of
our subject on Ackerman street, Matteawan,
is gladdened by one son, Lewis A., born in
1884. In politics Mr. Holmes is an independ-
ent voter, supporting either party under vary-
ing circumstances as his conscience dictates.
He and his wife are Methodists in faith, and
take a generous interest in the work of the
Church at Matteawan.

S\AMUEL BRYANT, a well-known citizen
,_j of Matteawan, Dutchess county, was born
February 10, 1833, in Gloucestershire, Eng-
land, where his family has resided for many
generations. His grandfather, Richard Bry-
ant, was a prosperous hat manufacturer there,
and his four sons — George, Jonathan, Samuel,
and Henry — all lived and died in England,



and were highly esteemed members of the
EstabHshed Church.

Jonathan Bryant, our subject's father, was
born at the old home, and learned the hatter's
trade in his father's factory. He followed this
business successfully until his death, in 1875;
his wife, Esther (Gardner), a native of the
same place, died in 1883. Her father, George
Gardner, was also engaged in hat manufactur-
ing. Of the thirteen children of this union,
nine are living: (i) George (deceased! was a
hatter in Matteawan, where his son, Albert R.
Bryant, still resides; (2) Mary A., a twin of (3)
Samuel, our subject, married John Skidmore,
of England, and lives in that country; (4)
Esther married John Connells, of Australia;

(5) Henry is a resident of Sydney, Australia;

(6) Richard lives at Yonkers, N. Y. ; ij) West-
ley resides in Sydney. Australia; (8) Albert
died in England; (9) Clara married (name not
given), of London; (lo) Eving and (in Jona-
than live in England; (I2) Luke and (13)
Richard died in infancy.

The subject of our sketch was reared in
Gloucestershire, England, learning the ances-
tral occupation, in which he engaged in early
manhood. In 1855 he came to the United
States, his hrst designation being Yonkers,
N. Y. He remained there only a few days.
and then went to Riverstreet, N. J., and
worked at his trade for a short time. In 1856
he made his permanent home at Matteawan,
engaging first in the hatter's business, but since
1885 he has conducted a saloon. He was
married, in 1857, to Miss Charlotte Gifford,
a native of England and a daughter of Thomas
Gifford. They have had six children: Mar-
tha M., now the wife of Fred Moore, of Mattea-
wan; Clara 1 Mrs. Richard Van Voorhis), of
the same place; Jane (Mrs. George Van Ors-
dale), also of Matteawan; Evan and Edward,
who are in the saloon business at Fishkill
Landing; and Lizzie, at home. The family
attend the Episcopal Church. Mr. Byrant has
many friends, and takes a loyal interest in
public questions, voting independently both on
local and national issues.

E\ LAKIN TOMPKINS, one of the most
'' prominent residents of Fishkill-on-Hud-
son, Dutchess county, and the able manager
of the Dutchess Hat Works, was born in Ash-
land, Greene Co., N. Y., July 9. 1842.

His family is of English origin, and he is of

the fifth generation in direct descent from
Stephen Tompkins, who came to America in
Colonial times, and, after a short residence in
Connecticut, settled in Winchester county,
N. Y., where he and two of his sons did good
service on the side of the colonies all through
the Revolutionary war. He had sixteen chil-
dren, and his remote descendants are very
numerous. One of his grandsons, Daniel D.
Tompkins, was vice-President of the United
States from 1S16 to 1820, and many other
members of the family have held positions of
honor and usefulness. The great-grandfather
of our subject, James Tompkins, supposed to
be a son of Stephen, rendered important serv-
ice in the Revolutionary war. He served in
the Seventh Dutchess County Regiment under
Col. Henry Luddington, and in the company
conmianded by Capt. George Lane. His son,
Solomon, our subject's grandfather, was one
of the earliest settlers at Ashland, being ac-
companied by his son, Solomon (2j, father of
our subject, who became a prominent farmer
there and married Elizabeth Randall, who sur-
vives him and now resides at Matteawan.

E. Lakin Tompkins was educated in the
public schools of Ashland, and in September,
1862, at the age of twenty, went to Matteawan
to work for the Seamless Clothing Manufactur-
ing Co. , with whom he remained eight years.
He then clerked for a year or two in a clothing
store belonging to his brother Lewis, and in
1872 he and John F. Gerow purchased his
brother's interest. He disposed of this, how-
ever, and in July, 1874, became superintendent
of the Dutchess Hat Works, which Lewis
Tompkins established at that time. Our sub-
ject has managed this extensive plant ever
since, and much of the time it has been under
his sole charge, owing to the ill health of his
brother and his absence abroad. At the death
of the latter Mr. Tompkins was appointed exec-
utor of his estate. An able business man,
displaying in every enterprise, energy and good
judgment, Mr. Tompkins has conducted or
assisted in various successful ventures. In
1889 he purchased a tract of land in the north-
ern part of the village, and laid it out in fifty
building lots, many of which have been sold
and are now occupied by dwelling houses. He
is a director of the First National Bank, and a
trustee of the Mechanics Savings Bank. In
politics he is a Republican. In 1878 he was
elected trustee of the village of Fishkill-on-
Hudson, was re-elected to the position for sev-



eral years in succession, and served one year as
president of the village. In August, 1892,
President Harrison appointed him postmaster
of his village, and this position he held four
3'ears, three and one-half years under President
Cleveland's administration. For ten years he
was a member of the board of education, being
elected term after term successively; but early
in 1896 he resigned on account of the demands
of other important interests upon his time.

Mr. Tompkins has a beautiful residence,
built in 1893, situated on High street and com-
manding a charming view of the river. His
wife was formerly Miss Cordelia E. Knapp, of
Greenwich, Conn., a daugtiter of the late John
E. and Joanna Knapp. Her father spent his
last days at their home, and passed from earth
Thursday, March 12, 1896, in his eighty-fifth
year. Two children were born of this mar-
riage, Reta I. and Harry \\. Mr. and Mrs.
Tompkins are leading members of the M. E.
Church, and he is especially active in its in-
terest, being a trustee and class leader at pres-
ent, and for many years he served as Sunday-
school superintendent. He has been a Free-
mason for about thirty years, and has held the
office of master in Beacon Lodge No. 283, F.
& A. M., for two successive terms.

E^DMUND H. SHEAFF, the superintend-
'I ent of the Fishkill and Matteawan water

works, and widely known as an able and
efficient manager of large enterprises, was born
in Radnor, Delaware county, Penn., June 29,

His family is of English origin, and he is a
direct descendant of Gen. Sheaff, of the Eng-
lish army. His grandfather, William Sheaff,
was a wealthy tanner in Pennsylvania, and his
father, William Sheaff, Jr., born in 1797, was
a prosperous farmer, and also a prominent
business man of Delaware county for many
years before he retired from active business.
His death occurred in Philadelphia August 25,
1 86 1. On May 28, 1828, he married Miss
Margaretta Fry Sinquette (a descendant of an
old French Huguenot family), who died in
1883. They had eleven children: John, Will-
iam, George, Sarah, Noah, Susannah, Mary,
Gertrude, Edmund H., Margaret and Adele.

Edmund H. Sheaff received his education
in part in the Philadelphia public schools, in
part in Crittendens Business College, same city.

When a mere boy, he enlisted, November 17,
1864, in Company K, 196th P. V. I., under
Capt. Edward Lyster, for a term of three
months, and served until he was mustered out
at the close of the war. He then went to Rio
de Janeiro, Brazil, and spent three years on a
coffee plantation, and on returning to the Uni-
ted States engaged in the transportation busi-
ness in New York City. In 1870 he went to
Cuba, and took charge of sugar plantations at
Sagua de la Grande and Cardinas; but after
two years went to New Orleans and then to
San Francisco, and in the following year en-
gaged in mining at Virginia City, Nev., where
he remained several years. On returning to
the East, he took up his residence at Hoboken,
N. J., and for three 3-ears was emploj'ed by
John H. Starin Transportation Co. In 1881
he was engaged by Decker & Rapp, as wharf-
inger, having charge of their docks at New
York City. In 1884 he went to Mt. \'ernon,
N. Y. , as superintendent and general manager
of the Mt. Vernon water works, remaining
seven years, and in 1891, representing the in-
terest of Taintor & Holt, bankers. No. 1 1 Wall
street. New York, he came to Fishkill to take
the management of the Fishkill & Matteawan
system. This duty he discharged most ably,
winning the respect and esteem of the entire
community. He is a Democrat in politics, and
a member of the First Baptist Church, of Mt.
Vernon, New York.

►)ENJAMIN M. TALBOT, a prominent res-
I ident of Fishkill-on-Hudson, is a well-
known dealer in real estate, and the owner of
valuable property in that vicinity.

He is a native of England, and a descend-
ant of an old Yorkshire family. His paternal
grandparents were Charles and Jane Talbot,
whose son Thomas, the father of our subject,
was a prosperous cloth merchant at Holmfirth,
Yorkshire, England. He married Judith
Winter, daughter of Matthias Winter, and
reared a family of eight children: Elizabeth,
Benjamin M. ( our subject ), Charles, Jane,
Richard, Thomas, Matthew and Emily.

Benjamin M. Talbot was educated in the
schools of his native town, and in early man-
hood came to America, where he located first
in Newburgh, N. Y. After one 3'ear there he
moved to Fishkill Landing, and in 1866 en-
gaged in the wholesale and retail liquor traffic,



continuing until 1886 — twenty years to a day.
He then sold his business and partially retired

Online LibraryJ.H. Beers & CoCommemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York → online text (page 106 of 183)