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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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owns, where the birth of his son, Benjamin,
also occurred. The latter was the grandfather
of our subject, and by his marriage with Eliza-
beth Dyer had several children, si.\ of whom
grew to maturity, namely: David, a machin-
ist and carpenter, of Hyde Park; Underbill,
who became a speculator in California; Sylves-
ter, who was a landlord in Pleasant \'alley
town; James, who was killed in amine in Cal-
ifornia; Abraham, the fatner of our subject;
and Hannah, wife of Lewis Haight, a farmer
of the town of Washington, Dutchess county.
They are all now deceased except Hannah.

On the old family homestead Abraham
Van Wagner was born in August, 1816, and
on reaching manhood he married Maria West-
ervelt, a native of the town of Poughkeepsie,
Dutchess county, and a daughter of Cornelius
Westervelt, a blacksmith by trade. For a
time after their marriage they lived upon
another farm in Pleasant Valley town, but
later returned to the home where Mr. Van-
W'agner's childhood was passed. In their
family were five children: Emeline, widow of
John W. Lattin, who followed farming; Elma,
wife of J. Edward Clapp, a farmer of Pleasant
Valley town; William, a farmer of Clinton
town, Dutchess county: and Benjamin and
Elizabeth, twins. The last named died in in-

fancy. The parents were both members of
the Presbyterian Church, and in politics the
father was a Democrat, and served as commis-
sioner many years. He was called from this
life in June, 1885; his estimable wife still
survives him.

On December iS, 1843, Benjamin Van-
Wagner, the subject of this review, was born
in the town of Pleasant Valley, and when only
a year old was taken by his parents 'to the
family homestead, where he was reared in the
usual manner of farmer boys. In 1870 he was
united in marriage with Miss Emily B. Wood,
a native of Hyde Park, and a daughter of Har-
vey Wood, and to them was born a son, Mil-
lard. The mother died in 1877, and in 1880
Mr. Van Wagner wedded her sister. Miss Jose-
phine Wood. Three children graced this
union: Harry, Frank and Ernest, but the
last named died in 1888. Our subject is the
owner of 106 acres of valuable land, highly
cultivated and improved with good and sub-
stantial farm buildings. He is an intelligent,
wide-awake farmer, enterprising and progress-
ive, always giving his support to any measure
for the benefit of the community. He is iden-
tified with the Democratic party, and his wife
is a consistent member of the Methodist

LUZERNE DUTCHERis a prominent and
and very highly esteemed citizen of the

town of Dover, Dutchess county, and is a de-
scendant of the well-known Holland-Dutch
family of that name.

Samuel Waldo Dutcher was a native of the
town of Washington, and grew to manhood
there, engaging in the tanner's trade, which he
carried on for many years. He married Miss
Maria Edmonds, and had three children:
Lawrence, Luzerne and Catherine. The elder
son, Lawrence, has always been prominent in
local affairs, and is a member of several fra-
ternal orders, theF. &A. M.,the I. O. O. F. .
and the K. of P. He married (first) Miss
Eliza McTurk, (second) Miss Catherine Dutch-
er, and (third) Miss Mary Quimby.

Luzerne Dutcher, our subject, was born in
1824, and after acquiring a common-school
education learned the details of the tanner's
trade, which he followed throughout his active
business life. About twenty years ago he pur-
chased a fine farm near South Dover, Dutch-
ess county, where he now resides, having re-



tired from business a few years ago. He mar-
ried Miss Harriet Soule, daughter of Lansing
Soule, a leading farmer of the town of Dover,
Dutchess county. They have had four chil-
dren: Mary F., who died in infancy; Charles
E.; Mary F. (2), who also died in infancy;
and Elmer W.

Charles E. was born in Warwick, Orange
Co., N. Y. , and was educated there. He first
engaged in farming, later was in the cattle
business in Chicago, and in the stock yards at
Des Moines. At present he is a mason in Chi-
cago. He married Miss Carrie Sterling, daugh-
ter of John and Emeline Sterling, and has one
son, Monroe.

Elmer W. was born at Highland Mills,
Orange Co., N. Y., in 1863, and attended
school in Poughkeepsie during his boyhood.
He is very successful as a farmer, and takes
much interest in local affairs and in the work
of the Masonic order, being a member of Dover
Plains Lodge No. 666. In 1893 he was united
in matrimony with Miss Hattie Dutcher. daugh-
ter of V'anness Dutcher, of Dover. They have
one daughter, Mabel.

one of the ablest and most successful phy-
sicians of Poughkeepsie, Dutchess county, is a
native of that city, born March 24, 1865.

Dr. John Faust, our subject's father, who
is a prominent veterinary surgeon of Pough-
keepsie, was born July 19, 1835, in Hessen-
Cassel, Germany, which place has been the
home of his ancestors for many generations,
and there his grandfather, Barhold Faust, and
his father, Conrad Faust, were also born, the
latter in 1807. Dr. John Faust acquired a
good education in his native place, and while
pursuing his studies he decided to come to
America, where he could obtain better oppor-
tunities. Landing in New York City, he soon
after began to learn the cooper's trade, which
he followed there until 1859, when he and his
brothers went to Poughkeepsie. In i860 they
entered into business there under the firm
name of John Faust & Bros. The Doctor was
an active worker in this enterprise until 1865,
when he becatne a silent partner, continuing
until 1875, when the partnership was dissolved.
In 1 88 1 the Doctor went before the examining
board of the New York \'eterinary Society,
and passed the examination, receiving the de-
gree of V. S. He is one of the most careful

of the veterinary surgeons of Dutchess county,
and has done much to elevate the profession
by his scientific researches. In 1854 he mar-
ried Miss Maria Frietag, also a native of Hes-
sen-Cassel, and has six children: Louis, a
physician at Schenectady; Frederick Augustus,
our subject; Otto, a veterinary surgeon in
Poughkeepsie; William P., a physician in
Schenectady; Mary, the wife of F. C. Krue-
ger, of that place; and Christina H., who is
at home.

Frederick A. Faust, our subject, after com-
pleting the. high-school course at the age of six-
teen, spent two jears in the preliminary study
of medicine with his brother. Dr. Louis Faust,
of Schenectady, as preceptor. He matricu-
lated at the New York Homeopathic College
in the fall of 1883, and took the full general
course, graduating April 15, 1SS6, passing his
vacations also in studying with his brother.
With this thorough preparation he began his
professional career, and on May 4, 1886, he
took charge of an established practice at Berne,
Albany county; but a year later he disposed of
it to locate in Poughkeepsie, where he opened an
office alone on Garden street. He has been very
successful in his practice at his native place,
and after four years in his first office and three
at No. 60 Market street, he purchased the
property on the northwest corner of Cannon
and Liberty streets, to which he removed
March 31, 1894. He is a reader, and keeps
well-informed upon all the lines of progress in
his ever-advancing profession. His clients are
among the best in the city, and his success in
the past forms ground for firm belief in his

In local affairs the Doctor has always
taken the side of progress and improvement.
Although he adheres to the principles of the
Republican party, he has never taken any ac-
tive share in politics. On January i, 1897,
he was appointed, by Mayor Hull, a member
of the city board of health, which position he
is still holding. He is a member of the Ger-
man Methodist Church, and takes great in-
terest in its various enterprises for the welfare
of the communit}'. Socially, he belongs to the
F. & A. M., Triune Lodge, the Poughkeepsie
Chapter and Commandery, and to the Amrita
Club. In professional circles he is a leading
spirit among the younger element; has twice
been vice-president of the Dutchess County
Homeopathic Medical Society, and is a prom-
inent member of the New York State Homeo-



pathic Society. In the summer of 1896 he
spent some six months in Europe, studying at
the hospitals of Berlin, specially the diseases
of children, and internal diseases, and his
knowledge of the German language, which he
reads and speaks fluently, enabled him to make
rapid progress in his studies. He also im-
proved the opportunity by making a tour
through Germany, Switzerland and Italy.

JOHN H. PARMELE. There are found in
every community men who are the leaders
in public affairs, who are the promoters of
all interests that have for their object the pub-
lic good, and on whom the welfare of the local-
ity depends. Of this class of citizens our sub-
ject is a worthy representative, and Dutchess
county may well be proud to claim him among
her native sons.

Mr. Parmele was born on the farm which
is still his home, in the town of Pleasant Val-
ley, February 14, 1846, and is a representa-
tive of one of the early families of New Eng-
land, descended from English ancestry. His
grandfather, Joseph Parmele, who was born in
Connecticut, August 15, 1776, married Lavi-
na Westervelt, a native of Dutchess county,
N. Y., and they located on the old family
homestead south of Poughkeepsie. Eight
children were born to them, as follows: Rich-
ard, who was born June 21, 1802, was a farmer
and merchant, and died in Poughkeepsie ; John,
born February 14, 1804, died at the age of
twenty-one; Catherine, born January 13, 1806,
became the wife of William H. Calkin; Cor-
nelius, born April 29, 1808, died on the old
homestead; Sarah Ann," born November 25,
1809, died unmarried; William was the father
of our subject; Elias, born February 13, 181 5,
was a farmer of Tompkins county, N. Y. ;
and Elizabeth, born May 20, 1821, died in in-
fancy. The grandfather made farming his life-
work, and died August 30, 1842, while his wife
passed away March 28, 1847. They were
members of the Reformed Church of Pough-

William Parmele, father of subject, was
born on the old family homestead in the town
of Poughkeepsie, March 2, 1812, and was
there reared to manhood. On November 23,
1842, he wedded Elizabeth Seaman, who was
born in the town of Hyde Park, January 27,
I 8 19, a daughter of William Seaman, a farm-
er. They began their domestic life on the

farm where our subject now resides, and reared
a family of four children: Lavina, born Janu-
ary 2, 1844, wife of John C. Wood, who was
a farmer of Hyde Park town; John H., sub-
ject of this review; Mary, who was born Oc-
tober 12, 1848, and is the deceased wife of Ed-
gar A. Briggs, of Poughkeepsi-e; and Maria L. ,
who was born July 26, 1854, and died in early
life. The father of this family always devoted
his energies to agricultural pursuits. His po-
litical support was given the Democracy, and
he and his wife held membership with the Pres-
byterian Church. He passed away February
13, 1876, she on November 11, 1892.

John H. Parmele remained in his parent's
home until about seventeen years of age, when
he became a student in Claverack Institute,
supplementing his primary education by a
thorough course of study there. When he laid
aside his text-books, he returned to the farm,
and has since been actively interested in its
improvement and cultivation. He now owns
and operates 103 acres of rich land, pleasantly
situated five miles from Poughkeepsie, and his
well-directed efforts bring him a good return.

On November 20, 1878, Mr. Parmele mar-
ried Miss Mary A. Lyon, daughter of George
Lyon, a farmer of this locality. Eight chil-
dren have been born to them, their names and
dates of birth being as follows: Mary L.,
March 10, 1880; Joseph L., August 31, 1881;
Fred, September 21, 1885; Elizabeth, Septem-
ber 2, 1887; George, May 19, 1889; William
J., March 7, 1891; Ruth, February 6, 1894;
and Ernest, July 20, 1896 (he died April 21,

The parents are identified with the Pres-
byterian Church of Pleasant Valley, and are
people of prominence in the community, hold-
ing an enviable position in social circles. His
political support isgiven the Democratic party,
but he has had neither time nor inclination for
public office, preferring to devote his best ef-
forts to his farm work, and to the faithful dis-
charge of his duties of citizenship.

leading farmers of the town of Pleasant
Valley, Dutchess county, there is none better
known in its history than the individual whose
name is here recorded.

Here his birth occurred April 20, 1831, and
in the same house his father, Israel Marshall,
was born in August 14, 1796, but the farm then



comprised a part of the town of Clinton. The
^grandfather, Zacheus Marshall, was a native
of Connecticut, born at Horseneck, February
5, 1746, and was of English descent. On De-
cember 14, 1764, he married Anna Totten,
who was born October 20, 1747, and they be-
came the parents of the following children:
Hannah, born October 5, 1768, became the
wife of a Mr. Stoughtenburgh, of Pleasant
Valley town; Reuben, born June 14, 1770, was a
resident of Hyde Park; David, born May 2,
1773, died while young; Totten, born July 7,
1775, was a farmer of Greene county, N. Y. ;
Daniel, born February 15, 1778; and Solomon,
born January 2, 1783, died in childhood; and
Phcebe, born October 25, 1787. For his
second wife, Zacheus Marshall wedded Susan-
na Dean (the grandmother of our subject).
She was born in Dutchess county, July 11,
1756, and was a daughter of Stephen Dean,
whose ancestors were English. Her marriage
with Mr. Marshall was celebrated December
25, 1789, and she became the mother of three
sons: Stephen D., born October 27, 1790,
was a farmer of Pleasant Valley town, and
died in Hyde Park; Henry S., born August 3,
1792, was a farmer of Hyde Park; and Israel
was the father of our subject. On April 24,
1806, Zacheus Marshall was married to Jane
Quinby, who was born June 27, 1765, and May
2, 1809, was born their son, Isaac P., who was
was a farmer of Pleasant \'alley town, and be-
came a prominent politician. The grandfather
was a carpenter by trade, and also carried on

Upon the old home farm Israel Marshall
grew to manhood, and on May 26, 1825, he
was joined in wedlock with Anna Gifford,
whose birth occurred in the town of Stanford,
Dutchess county, March 23, 1799. Her fa-
ther, John Gifford, was also a native of Stan-
ford town, where he engaged in farming.
After their marriage, the parents of our subject
located upon the old farm, where they reared
their two children: Susan A., who was born
December 11, 1827, and died September 26,
1842; and Theron R. The father gave his
exclusive attention to agricultural pursuits, was
a Democrat in politics, and died in the faith of
the Friends Church, July 13, 1873. His wife,
who was also a member of that denomination,
died October 25, 1883.

Our subject was reared to the life of a
farmer, and received from his parents many a
lesson in thrift and honesty, which have been

his guiding principles through life. On Octo-
ber 31, 1855, he was married to Elizabeth
Marshall, a granddaughter of John Marshall.
She was born in the town of Stanford March
7, 1836. Her father, Isaac Marshall, who was
born in Pleasant \'alley town, January 22,
1816, wedded Eliza A. Lawrence, who was
born in that town F'ebruary 12, 1814. They
became the parents of seven children: Eliza-
beth, wife of our subject; Augusta, wife of
Joseph Doty, a farmer of Pleasant \'alley town;
William W., who resides in Poughkeepsie
town; Sarah K., wife of Parris Baker, a farmer
and carpenter; Permelia; Ellathan G., who
operates the old homestead; and Emily J.,
wife of Clarence Van Wagner, a farmer of
Pleasant Valley town.

Theron R. Marshall, the subject proper of
this review, began his domestic life on the old
homestead where he lived until 1892, when he
removed to his present farm, comprising forty-
five acres; but he still owns the other place,
whose boundaries contain 1 20 acres of rich
and productive land. He is a thorough Demo-
crat in politics, has served his fellow towns-
men as assessor, was justice of the peace from
1 89 1 until 1895, and represented his town on
the board of supervisors in 1883, 1884 and
1888. He is highly respected throughout the
community, having the confidence of all with
whom he comes in contact, and himself and
wife are earnest members of the Friends
Church. To them were born three children:
Israel D., an agriculturist of Pleasant \'alley
town, who was born August 3, 1857, and mar-
ried Carrie D. Van De Water; Susan A., who
was born December 15, 1858, and died Sep-
tember 10, i860; and 'Robert L.,also a farmer
of Pleasant Valley, who was born August 13,
i860, and wedded Elizabeth W. Conklin.

few men more worthy of representation
in a work of this kind than the subject of this
biographj', who has passed his entire life upon
the comfortable homestead where he still re-
sides. It is one of the best farms in the town
of Red Hook, comprising as it does 144 acres
of rich and fertile land, where he is success-
fully engaged in general farming.

Our subject can trace his ancestry on his
father's side to the founder of the family in
the New World, who belonged to a promi-
nent family of England dating from the tenth



century, and on coming from that country
to America located at Hartford, Conn., in
1639. His descendant in the fifth generation,
Sylvanus Beckwith, our subject's grandfather,
was born in the town of Lyme, Conn., May
22, 1742. He married Amy Sutherland, born
in this countr3' in i 743, and who was of Scotch
extraction. They located upon a farm in the
town of Stanford, and all through the Revolu-
tionary war he valiantly aided the colonies in
their struggle for independence, serving as a
soldier in the Continental army. He was called
from this life May 30, 1839.

Nathan Beckwith, father of our subject,
was born September 15, 1778, in the town of
Stanford. He married Betsie Gale, a native
of Amenia, Dutchess county, and a daughter
of Josiah Gale, who came to Dutchess county
from Connecticut. The Gale family is of
English origin, and one of its members, George
W. Gale, was the founder of the city of Gales-
burg, 111. In 1807 Mr. Beckwith located upon
a farm in the town of Red Hook (at that time
a part of the town of Rhinebeck), where he con-
tinued to make his home until his death, March
4, 1865. His political support was given to
the Democratic party, and he served his fellow
citizens as supervisor of the township for many
years; he served in the war of 1812 as lieuten-
ant, being stationed at Brooklyn Heights, and
for services in that war received a grant of
land in Herkimer county, N. Y.; was commis-
sioned as colonel of cavalry by Gov. Tompkins
in 1820. On the occasion of the visit of Gen.
LaFaj'ette to Dutchess county, in 1824, Mr.
Beckwith was marshal of the day. He was a
classmate of President Martin Van Buren at
Kinderhook Academy, and graduated as civil
engineer. With Prof. Joseph Henry he sur-
veyed a State road from Hudson river to Lake
Erie, afterward adopted as the route of the
Erie railway. He was a life member of the
American Bible Society, also the Foreign
Bible Society, and helped to organize the First
Baptist Church of Red Hook. Mrs. Betsey
Gale Beckwith in practical life maintained the
religious fervor and. devotion to Christian prin-
ciples which characterized her Puritan fore-
fathers, and was a blessing to her family and
neighborhood, ministering to the spiritual and
temporal wants of the afflicted until her death
in 183S.

To Nathan and Betsey Beckwith were born
four sons and three daughters. The eldest
son, josiah Gale, graduated from Union Col-

lege, studied medicine and settled at Litch-
field, Conn, where he became eminent in his
profession. He was president of the State
Medical Society, a delegate to the National
Medical Convention, and appointed by the
State to the board of medical examiners of
the insane at the asylum at Hartford. He
was elected several times to the State Legisla-
ture, and once nominated Governor. In 1831
he married Jane M. Seymour, a cousin of
Governor Horatio Seymour, of New York, and
died at Litchfield March 4, 1871.

The fourth son, William S. Beckwith, our
subject, was born January 14, 1820, on his
present farm in the town of Red Hook. He
attended the district schools of the neighbor-
hood until eleven years of age, when he was
compelled to give up study and turn his entire
attention to agriculture, at the same time tak-
ing a few winter terms study in the Red Hook
Academy. He is a very intelligent man, most
of his knowledge being acquired by study at
night, and otherwise, and is well posted on the
current events of the day. On March 29,
1848, he was married to Miss Ann M. Collyer,
a native of Sing Sing, N. Y., and si.x children
blessed their union: Alice M.; Thomas C. ;
William, who makes his home in California;
Amy, who married Armand De Potter; Leila,
wife of Abram Havens, a lawyer of New York
City; and George, who died at Pella, Iowa.
Mr. Beckwith is a stanch Democrat, and has
occupied various positions in his town, includ-
ing that of poormaster, assessor many years,
and supervisor of the town of Red Hook in

JEREMIAH MEAD, a leading dairyman of
the town of Pawling, Dutchess county,
^ noted for his successful management of large
agricultural interests, is a descendant of one
of the oldest families of Putnam county, N. Y.
His ancestors came from England four or five
generations ago, and made their home on what
was then a frontier line in the town of Kent,
Putnam county, where their descendants have
been prominent in different lines of life. Jere-
miah Mead, our subject's grandfather, had so
strong a liking for the free life of a pioneer
that he left his fine farm of 300 acres, in 1845,
to go with his familj' to the vicinity of Fond
du Lac, Wis., then a wilderness, where he en-
tered a large tract of land, upon which he
passed his remaining years, dying in 1S88, at



the age of ninety years. His wife was Sarah
Bawett, a member of another old family living
near Lake Mahopac. They had seven chil-
dren: Major, Milan, Morris, Mrs. Mahala
Metcalf, Moses, Minerva (who married James
Huyatt), and Marrilla (who married Henry
Merrick). Major had several sons who are
now occupying prominent positions in Wis-

Morris Mead (our subject's father), who
was born in 1817, was the only one of the
family to remain in Putnam county, and there
passed his entire life, following farming as an
occupation. He possessed the characteristic
good sense of the Mead family, and was highly
esteemed in the neighborhood. He was a lead-
ing Baptist, helping to found their Church in
his vicinity, and holding the office of deacon
for many years. He married Sarah Hyatt,
daughter of James Hyatt, a well-known resi-
dent of Putnam county. His death occurred
in 1853; that of his wife in 1890. Of their
seven children only three are living. Cather-
ine died in childhood; Marilda is the wife of
Eli Smalley, resides in Fishkill, and has one
son, Charles, who is now an attorney. Peter
and Sarah Ophelia died in childhood; Jere-
miah is the subject of this sketch; Jennie died
in 1 876 ; and Roselle lives in the town of Dover.

Jeremiah Mead was born at the old home-
stead in Putnam county, May 9, 1843, and re-
ceived his education in the district schools of
that locality. Being left fatherless at the age
of ten years, he was obliged to take up the
serious business of life while still a boy in
years. At thirteen he left home to work upon a
farm, for which he received during his first year
$15 and his winter's schooling. For a number
of years he continued to work for wages for
eight months, and attending school during the
winter. When he was twenty-four he returned
home and worked the farm for two years, and
then sold his interest to his brother. In 1869
he took the old Deacon Campbell homestead
on shares, and has now conducted it for twenty-
seven years, adding land from time to time
until he has 400 acres under his control. He
makes a specialty of dairying, and is very suc-
cessful in that line. He owns a farm of 250

Online LibraryJ.H. Beers & CoCommemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York → online text (page 148 of 183)