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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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resident of St. Joseph, Mo. ; Bridget married
Nathan Conklin, a farmer; Ellen married
Valentine Rickes, a blacksmith in Millbrook;
John is a farmer in Ireland; Thomas farms in
the town of Washington; and Edmond is our
subject. The father of this family died in
Ireland in 1844, and the mother survived him
until 1863. They were faithful and consistent
members of the Roman Catholic Church.

John Stack, the maternal grandfather of
our subject, was a noted horseman. In his
family were children, as follows: Thomas,
Morris, John (who was one of the finest riders
in Ireland), Richard, William, Bridget, Mar-
garet, Ellen, Catherine, and Mary.

Edmond Butler, the subject proper of this
sketch, spent his early days in Ireland, and at

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the age of eighteen (in 1S50) he took passage
in the " Martha J. Ward," for the New World.
On his arrival he went to live with the family
of Nicholas Haight, in the town of Washington,
Dutchess county, remaining with them until
Mr. Haight's death, January 15, 1856, and
shortly afterward the son, James Haight, made
our subject promise to remain with the widowed
mother and her two daughters, Sallie and
Louisa, until their death, and also asked them
to remember Mr. Butler for his kindness to the
f; mily. James Haight died October 12, 1859;
tie widowed mother on December 25. 1864;
Louisa on March 5, 1875, and Sallie on April
I, 1 89 1. The sisters, Sallie and Louisa, re-
warded Mr. Butler for his kindness and long
faithfulness to the family by leaving him the
homestead and considerable other property.
He had only one settlement with the family,
and that was in 1865, shortly before his mar-
riage; and when that event took place he
brought his bride to live on the Haight
family homestead, where they reared their
large family, and which they now own and

On October 8, 1865, Mr. Butler was mar-
ried to Miss Ellen Cullinan, also a native of
County Waterford, Ireland, and a daughter of
Michael Cullinan, a farmer in that country.
Mr. and Mrs. Butler began their married life
on the present homestead, where the following
children were born: James H., July 18, 1866;
John M.. September 6, 1868; Thomas E.,
April 10, 1871; Sally H., June 24, 1873, who
graduated with honors from the Eastman
Business College, Poughkeepsie, in 1891, and
is now bookkeeper for James Converse; Ed-
mond, Jr., January 29, 1876; William C,
August 22, 1878; Louisa H., February ig,
1883; all of whom are single.

At one time Mr. Butler was the owner of
about 900 acres of land, and now owns about
500 acres, but farms about 1,000 acres. He
has been a general farmer, and has given much
attention to the breeding of blooded stock.
He has sold a great many fine horses to prom-
inent people, and at present has about thirty-
one head on his place. He is very fond of
nice stock, especially horses, of which he is an
extensive breeder, and owns "Benjamin Har-
rison," one of the promising stallions of the
county. Besides his own work he manages
the farm of James Converse, a wealthy farmer,
who has always about twenty-five head of
horses on the place. In politics Mr. Butler is


a Republican, and he and his family are Cath-
olics. Although coming to America without
money, he has, by perseverance and hard
work, attained the position of one of the
wealthy citizens of his township. He is a pro-
gressive and representative citizen, and takes
an active interest in all public matters.

EWRITT CONOVER occupies a place in
/ the esteem of his fellow townsmen which

is a tribute to that genuine worth and true
nobleness of character which are universally
recognized and honored. Enterprise and in-
dustry are numbered among his marked char-
acteristics, and he has been an important fac-
tor in advancing the general welfare and secur-
ing the material development of the town of
Pleasant Valley.

Mr. Conover was born October 10, 1847,
in the town of Pleasant Valley. His father,
Peter Conover, was a native of the town of
Poughkeepsie, and the grandfather, Jacob
Conover, was a progressive farmer of Dutchess
county. He married Miss Van Kleeck, and
took up his abode on a farm in Poughkeepsie
town, where they reared a family of five chil-
dren, namely: Peter, whose sketch follows;
Abram, an agriculturist of the town of Hyde
Park; Adrian, a farmer of the town of Pleasant
Valley; Barbara A., wife of Merritt A. Mar-
shall, a farmer who is now living in Pleasant
Valley; and Catherine, wife of Zachariah Van-
Wagner, who devotes his energies to agricultural
pursuits in this neighborhood. To the same call-
ing the grandfather of our subject devoted his
life, and spent his last days in Pleasant Val-
ley. During the Revolutionary war he was a
captain in the home guards.

Peter Conover spent his youth in the usual
manner of farmer lads, and after entering upon
his business career he chose, as a companion
and helpmeet on life's journey. Miss Sarah Van-
Wagner, who was born in the town of Pleas-
ant Valley, and, like her husband, was of Hol-
land lineage. They established their home
upon the farm where our subject now resides,
and their union was blessed with five children:
Evritt; Martha, wife of Frank Lamoree, who
operates a tract of land in the valley; Abram,
a farmer of the town of Clinton; Emily, wife
of Edwin Husted, a resident of the village of
Pleasant Valley; and Nellie, wife of Frank
Knapp, a farmer of Clinton town. The par-
ents have both passed away, leaving many


warm friends to mourn their loss. They were
consistent members of the Presbyterian Church,
and Mr. Conover was a Republican in his po-
litical belief.

Evritt Conover, whose name introduces
this review, early became familiar with all the
duties of farm life, for at an early age he per-
formed his quota of the work on the old home-
stead. He obtained his education in the dis-
trict schools, and then entered upon the more
responsible duties that come to one on laying
aside te.\t-books and commencing a business
career. He is to-day the owner of lOo acres
of cultivable land, conveniently situated about
seven miles from Poughkeepsie, and carries on
general farming. He has a beautiful home
and substantial outbuildings, which are sur-
rounded by fields of waving grain, and are
supplemented by all the conveniences and ac-
cessories of a model farm of the nineteenth

In February, 1878, Evritt Conover was
married to Miss Allie Walters, who was born
in Cairo, town of Pleasant Valley, Dutchess
Co., N. Y., a daughter of Edward Walters, a
farmer, merchant and miller. They now have
four children: Ethelyn, Rose, Robert and Har-
old. The parents attend the Presbyterian
Church, and hold an enviable position in social
circles where true worth and intelligence are
received as the passports into good society.
Mr. Conover is a Republican in political belief,
and is deeply and actively interested in those
affairs which pertain to the public welfare.

GEORGE S. HALSTED. The subject of
this personal narration is one of the suc-
cessful and progressive farmers resident within
the borders of the town of Hyde Park, and
may be termed one of the representative men
of his section, where he is engaged in general
farming. He has made his special field of in-
dustry a success, and is highly esteemed and
respected by those who know him best. He
was born at Crum Elbow, in Hyde Park town,
September 14, 1853, and belongs to a family
that for several generations has been identified
with the history of Dutchess county.

David Halsted, his great-grandfather, was
one of the earliest settlers of the town of Beek-
man, where from the primeval forest he de-
veloped a farm ar>d reared his family. He
belonged to the Society of Friends. He mar-
ried, and became the father of seven children:

Stephen, Samuel, David, Jerusha, Prudence,
Phebe and Eunice.

David H. Halsted, the grandfather, was
born in the town of Beekman, where he spent
his boyhood days, and there owned two farms.
He married Miss Letitia Haviland, daughter
of Thomas Haviland, of Pawling, Dutchess
county, and the following children were born
to them: Thomas, Amy, Moses and Eliza-
beth, all deceased; David S. , father of our
subject; and Letitia, wife of Isaac Hewlett.
In 1832, the father of this family removed to
the town of Clinton, Dutchess county, where
he died two years later. In religious belief he
was a Friend.

The birth of David Sands Halsted, the
father of our subject, occurred in the town of
Beekman, March 28, 1819, and he obtained
his education in the schools of the neighbor-
hood. He accompanied the family to Clinton
town, and remained upon the home farm a few
years after his father's death. In his twentieth
year he purchased a farm in the town of Hyde
Park, on which he located after his marriage,
September 9, 1846, with Caroline W. Hew-
lett, who was born in that town, November 14,
1830, and died May 15, 1866, in the town of
Lagrange, same county. Two children graced
their union: William D., born August 5, 1848,
and George S., of this review. In the town
of Pleasant Valley he was again married, June
10, 1868, his second union being with Mar-
garet J. Allen Marshall, who was there born
March 6, 1832. He engaged in farming in
Hyde Park from 1839 until 1859, during which
time he was elected inspector of elections for
the town on the Democratic ticket. Since the
latter year, however, he has made his home in
the town of Lagrange, where he has filled the
same position. On starting out in life he re-
ceived about $1,500, and being very successful
in his business undertakings has been able to
assist his children. He has always attended
the Friends Church at Poughkeepsie, and is a
gentleman worthy the commendation of all.

For four years George S. Halsted attended
the Dutchess County Academy, under Stewart
Pelham, after \vhich he pursued his studies for
two years in the Cary Academy, but completed
his education with Mr. Pelham, finishing the
entire course in 1872. On leaving school he
took up farming, and for many years worked
for his father, but in 18S0 purchased the old
Sidney Livingston farm, removing upon the
place in the spring of that year. It comprises



sixty-five acres of rich and arable land, which
he has converted into one of the best farms
of the town. In 1880 Mr. Halsted was mar-
ried to Miss Esther E. Dickinson, of West-
chester county, N. Y. , daughter of Henry
Dickinson, and they have become the parents
of three children: Ruth, Caroline W., and
George D.

Politically, Mr. Halsted affiliates with the
Democratic party, and he is ranked as a man of
ability and enterprise, on account of which he
holds a good position among the people of the
community. In 1884 he was elected justice
of the peace to fill a vacancy, and in 1888 and
1892 re-elected to the same office. He has
also been school trustee and assessor of his
district, and has done much toward getting the
postal facilities improved in his section. He
is prominently identified with the Dutchess
County Farmers Club, and is a charter mem-
ber and one of the directors of the Farmers
Town Co-operative Insurance Company of
Hj'de Park, while religiously he belongs to the
Hicksite Branch of the Society of Friends, at-
tending meeting at Crum Elbow.

JAMES BLAIR. Among the most success-
ful horticulturists, or gardeners, in this
country, there are few that are the peers of
the representatives of the Scotch-Irish race.
In the village of Grange, County TjTone, Ire-
land, our subject's birth occurred January 29,
1853, and he is a son of David Blair, who was
born in Ayrshire, Scotland, in 1804. His
grandfather, Robert Blair, was also a native
and farmer of the latter country, belonged to
one of its oldest families.

For twenty-five years the father followed
teaching at Cloughhag, County Derry, Ireland,
and continued to follow that profession until
seventy-five years of age. He was a man of
more than ordinary ability, highly educated,
and proved a competent instructor. He was
a particularly fine mathematician, and was one
of the representative men of the locality in
which he lived. He married Agnes, daughter
of James Foster, who was born in Ireland, but
was of Scotch descent. The parental house-
hold included five children: Robert, a gar-
dener, who died in 1889; James, of this sketch;
David, who is connected with a boot and shoe
house in Ireland; Margaret, who died at the
age of six years; and William, who died in

1889. In 1889 the father was called to his
final rest, but the mother still makes her
home in Ireland.

Under his father's instruction, Mr. Blair,
of this review, received a good education, and
on leaving school at the age of seventeen had
charge of his father's farm for a year. Dur-
ing the following four years he served an
apprenticeship at gardening at Killymoon Cas-
tle, and then began as a journeyman with
Dickson & Co., of Edinburgh, Scotland, with
whom he remained a year. Sixteen months
were then passed on the estate of Lord Lam-
ington, in Lanarkshire, Scotland, and the fol-
lowing six months he was again with Dickson
& Co. Going to Calendar Park, near Fal-
kirk, in Stirlingshire, owned by William Forbes,
he remained there a year, after which for a
year and a half he worked for Earl Grey, at
Howick Hall, in Northumberland. For six
years and a half he was then foreman for Lord
Belper, of Kingston Hall, in Nottinghamshire,
and on leaving his service returned to Ireland
for a short time, later gaining his experience in
fruit culture in Selkirk, Scotland, at The Tweed
Vineyard, where he remained two years.

In the year 1887, Mr. Blair determined to
try his fortune in America, and coming to Paw-
tucket, R. I., he there served as head gardener
for Mr. Sales for about a year; but, owing to
the death of two brothers and his father,
returned to Ireland. In 1889, however, he
came again to the New World, this time locat-
ing at Yonkers, N. Y. , where he was head
gardener for Mrs. Lillenthal, at Belvour Park.
It was in 1890 that he came to Staatsburg,
and he has since been head gardener for Ogden
Mills, giving the best of satisfaction.

In 1889 Mr. Blair was married to Miss
Eliza Lloyd, of Shropshire, England, and they
have four children: David Edward, Agnes
Margaret, William James and Hilda Eliza.
Our subject belongs to St. Margaret's Episco-
pal Church. He has the respect and confi-
dence of all who know him, and January 2,
1895, was elected first president of the Dutch-
ess County Horticultural Society.-

ILLIAM HERRICK, an old-time agri-
culturist of large experience, is now
numbered among the most enterprising and
prosperous farmers of the town of Pleasant
Valley, Dutchess county, by whose people he



is held in that reverence and respect tacitly
accorded those v%hose lives have been distin-
guished by integrity and usefulness.

The Herricks under consideration come of
a prominent family of England, and the
descent of our subject is traced as follows:
Sir William Herrick, of Beau Manor Park,
Leicestershire, England; Henry; Ephraim;
Samuel; Stephen; Elijah, who was a captain
in the Revolutionary war; Ephraim (our sub-
ject's grandfather), who was born at Amenia.
Dutchess county, married Anna Dixon, and
located in the town of Milan, where he estab-
lished a Church; Ephraim. oursubject's father;
and William (our subject t. The first of the
family to come from England to America
located at Beverly Farms, Massachusetts.

Ephraim Herrick, father of William, was
born and reared on his father's farin in the
town of Milan, Dutchess county. He married
Phoebe Albertson, a native of the town of Hyde
Park, Dutchess county, where his father, John
Albertson, a Hollander by descent, was a
farmer. After their marriage Ephraim Her-
rick and his young wife located upon a farm in
the town of Milan, where children as follows
were born to them: John is a farmer in the
town of Pine Plains, Dutchesscounty; William
is the next in order of birth; Walter was
a practicing physician, and died January 13,
1895; Gurdon, who was an agriculturist in the
town of Milan, died April 28, 1894; James is a
speculator of that town; Elizabeth is the widow
of Isaac Sherwood, at one time a grocer of
the village of Rhinebeck; Susan died in infancy;
and Caroline married Henry Butts, a farmer
of the town of Stanford, Dutchess county.
The mother of these died, and four years later,
about 1835, Ephraim Herrick married Susan
Ann Andrews, by which union there were four
children: Anna, George, Edward and Ephraim.
The father continued to follow the occupation
of farming until his death, in 1867. He was
a faithful member of Christ's Church; politic-
ally he affiliated with the Democratic party,
and served as supervisor of his town, and county
superintendent of the poor.

William Herrick, the subject proper of this
sketch, was born September 28, 1818, in the
town of Milan, Dutchess countv. and was
reared to manhood on the home farm, where
at an early age he became familiar with agri-
cultural pursuits. In 1841 he married Eliza-
beth Brown, who was born in the town of
Washington, Dutchess county, a daughter of

Charles Brown, a native of Pawling, same
county, and a farmer and wagon maker by oc-
cupation. They began their domestic life
upon his father's place, whence at the end of
five years they removed to the present farm of
our subject, where he has now resided for over
half a century. Four children blessed that
union: (i) Charles B., in his day a prominent
lawyer of Poughkeepsie, married Ada Van-
Benschoten, and died July 29, i896;they had
no children. (2i Phcebe A. married Albert P.
Smith, a miller of Salt Point, Dutchesscounty
(now deceased), and they had one son, Eugene
Herrick Smith, who is in business in New
York. (31 Sarah is a school teacher in Penn-
sylvania. (4) Marshall, one of the leading
furniture dealers of Poughkeepsie, married
Julia Allen, and they have one son, Harold
Allen Herrick. The mother of this family
died in i860, and October 26, 1865, William
Herrick married Mary Harris, a daughter of
Col. Israel Harris, of the town of Pine Plains,
Dutchess county, to which union has been
born a daughter, Mary Elizabeth.

Mr. Herrick has an excellent farm of 190
acres, which he has placed under a high state
of cultivation, and for many years has followed
general farming, including the raising of
blooded cattle, in which he makes a specialty
of Jersey cows, having at present a fine herd
of some thirty head of this breed. He also
sells cream to the Co-operative Creamery.
By industry and good management he has
made his farm one of the most highly culti-
vated and improved in the locality.

Mr. Herrick is not a member of any
Church, but has been interested in the one at
Salt Point, N. Y. He is prominently identi-
fied with the Democratic party, has ably
served as justice of the peace, and as assessor
and supervisor of his town. Surrounded by
loving kindred and friends, he is now nearing
the last milestone that marks the end of life's
journey. His record has been an honorable
one, his years have been fruitful with deeds of
usefulness and kindness, with malice toward
none and friendliness toward all who have come
under his influence, and he has gained the re-
spect and honor of the whole community.

BENJAMIN K. WHITE. Among the agri-
culturists of Dutchess county who have
attained success through their own persever-
; ance, enterprise and good management, is the



gentleman whose name is here given. He is
now engaged in general farming in the town of
Stanford, and is complete master of the calling
which he is following. His sterling integrity
and honorable, upright manhood full}' entitle
him to the position which he holds in the esti-
mation of the people of the community.

Mr. White is a native of Dutchess county,
born October 3, 1859, near the village of Beek-
man, in the town of Beekman, and is a son of
Leonard and Mary (Wright) White, who died
when our subject was but an infant, the mother
in 1859, and the father the year following.
They were earnest members of the Methodist
Episcopal Church, and the father followed the
occupation of farming in the town of Beekman
up to the time of his death. Our subject was
taken by Dr. D. A. Knapp, of North Clove, in
the town of Unionvale, Dutchess county, with
whom he continued to live until reaching his
majority, and attended school at that place.
At the age of twenty-one he went to Fremont
county, Iowa, and later took up 160 acres of
land at Beatrice, Neb. On disposing of this
he went to St. Louis, where he was employed
in the stockyards with his brother Thomas for
two years and a half, when, being taken ill, he
returned to Dutchess county, and operated a
farm in the town of Unionvale for a year. He
then purchased his present place, to the culti-
vation and improvement of which he devotes
his time and attention, and during the twelve
years of his Residence there has made it one of
the most highly productive farms in the lo-

On January 13, 1880, Mr. White was mar-
ried to Miss Frances M. Traver, daughter of
Philo and Mary Traver, and a son — Frederick
— was born to them August 2, 1890. They
are devoted to the interests of the Methodist
Episcopal Church, of which they are members.
In his political views Mr. White coincides with
the principles of the Republican party, but
takes no active part in politics, preferring to
give his time to his business affairs, and has
never accepted office.

ALBERT J. BUDD is a reliable and in-
telligent farmer of the town of Pleasant

Valley, where his birth occurred August 16,
1830. His father, James Budd, was one of
the twelve children of John Budd, and our sub-
ject is the youngest in a family of twelve. One

of his brothers, Joseph, is the father of James
H. Budd, the Governor of California, while
another brother, Joel Budd, is a prominent
resident of Hyde Park. The primary educa-
tion of our subject was obtained in the district
schools, and he later pursued his studies for
some time in Amenia Seminary, also at Rhine-
beck and Amsterdam, N. Y. After leaving
the school room he turned his attention to
agricultural pursuits.

On October 16, 1853, Mr. Budd was united
in marriage with Miss Kate S. Stoutenburgh,
who was born in the town of Pleasant Valley,
in 1837, and is the eldest child of Tobias and
Maria (Albertson) Stoutenburgh, the former
born in the town of Hyde Park January 29,
1806, and the latter in the town of Pleasant
Valley, July 18, 1809. Her sister, Mary, is
the wife of Dr. Merritt Dutcher, a practicing
physician of Owego, N. Y. Religiously, her
father was a Baptist, and his political support
was formerly given to the Whig party, he later
becoming a stanch Republican. Her grand-
father, Isaac Stoutenburgh, was the son of Will-
iam Stoutenburgh, one of the Nine Partners
who came to this country and took up a large
tract of land, thus becoming one of the earliest
settlers of this locality.

After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Budd
began their domestic life upon their present
farm, and their household was brightened by
the presence of eight children: James T., a
farmer of Pleasant Valley town; Frederick,
who was a lawyer and farmer, and died in
Pleasant Valley; Caroline, wife of Oliver
Wood, also a farmer of the same township;
Lillian, deceased wife of Byron Conklin, an
agriculturist; Isaac A., a farmer of Clinton
town, Dutchess county; Mary A., wife of
David S. Van De Water, a farmer of Pough-
keepsie town; Walter, an agriculturist of
Pleasant Valley town; and Willard, who died
in infancy. Mr. Budd has been successful in
his life work, and owns a fine farm of 108
acres, where, in connection with general farm-
ing, he makes a specialty of the manufacture of
butter. He is progressive in his methods, and
on his place are seen all the conveniences and
accessories of a model farm of the nineteenth
century. His political views are in accordance
with those of the Republican party, and he
has served as justice of the peace. To the
Baptist Church he and his wife contribute lib-
erally, and they enjoy the esteem of the entire



JOHN A. MONFORT. The fine farm owned
by this gentleman, in the town of Lagrange,
Dutchess county, is a standing monument
to his industry, perseverance and good man-

Online LibraryJ.H. Beers & CoCommemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York → online text (page 146 of 183)