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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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of Chicago, 111. (3; Myron married Miss Jennie
Carpenter, and is now engaged in the furniture
business in Poughkeepsie. (4) Alice married
Frederick Hall, a carpenter of Patterson, Put-
nam Co., N. Y. , and they have three children,
Anna, Myron and Clayton. (5) Jennie is follow-
ing the profession of teaching in Lagrange
town, Dutchess county. (6) George turns his at-
tention to agricultural pursuits. (7) Etta, who
completes the family, is a teacher of New
Hamburg, Dutchess county. With the ex-
ception of the two youngest children, whose
births occurred in the town of Unionvale, all
were born in Stanford town. They were pro-
vided with good educational privileges, and
have become intelligent and useful citizens of
the various communities where they make
their homes.

Andrew Van Vlack, the grandfather of Mrs.
Barlow, was a native of Dutchess county, and
a farmer by occupation. By his marriage with
Catherine Jewell he had seven children: Al-
fred, the father of Mrs. Barlow; Abraham,
who married Phoebe Devine; Cornelia, who
married John Stewart ; Martha, who married
Cornelius Ingraham; Eliza, who married
Nicholas McMann; Catherine, who married
Jonathan Devine; and Reuben, who married
Catherine Johnson.

Alfred Van Vlack was born in 1814, in the
town of Pleasant Valley, where he was edu-
cated and learned the milling business, which
he successfully followed throughout life, pur-
chasing and conducting a mill in Unionvale
town. He was a stalwart Democrat in poli-
tics and quite an active politician, but never
cared for the honors or emoluments of public
office, while socially he was connected with
the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He
was joined in wedlock with Miss Mary Foster,
daughter of Martha (Welling) Foster. P"ive
children were born of this union, as follows:
Amelia married Lewis Ward, by whom she
had a daughter — Minnie. Martha is the sec-
ond of the family. Jennie married Henry



936



COMMEMORATIVE BIOORAPHICAL RECORD.



Burton, and has two children — Estella, now
the wife of Edward \'an Keiiren; and Lewis,
who married Hattie Duncan. Mary wedded
Benjamin Van Wyck. Louisa died in infancy.



GEORGE NAGENGAST was born in Pough-
keepsie, Dutchess county, June lo, 1852,
and has already resided in that city forty-five
years. His father, Charles Nagengast, was
born in Bavaria, Germany, in 1825, and came
to America in 1840. He first settled at
Honesdale, Penn., from there went to Albany
and soon after found his way to Poughkeepsie.

Charles Nagengast was a teamster by oc-
cupation, hauling ore for the blasting furnaces
where he was also foreman for many years.
In the later years of his life he was in the
saloon business. He married Mary Hanline,
and they had children as follows: George;
Caroline married Lindsley Downer; Charles is
in business in Poughkeepsie; Elizabeth Louisa
married Frederick Bart; John Schwartz. The
mother of this family was a woman of strong
character and a large fund of common sense.
She died June 18, 1873, the father surviving
her until 1889.

George Nagengast had but a limited educa-
tion as he was only about eleven years old
when he went to work in the cigar shop of
Joseph Bayard, which a week afterward
changed owners, John Schwartz taking pos-
session of the business. He remained in this
connection for nineteen years, lacking one
month, and until March 25, 1881, when he
went into the butchering business. In this,
however, he remained only a few weeks, and
then again took up the work of his trade, this
time with Stephen Stafford. He afterward
ran a factory for Eastmead cS: Lewis, and on
October 2, 1881, he began keeping hotel in
what is now the " Hudson Kiver House." He
remodeled the building, and conducted the
business for six years and eleven months.
Later he bought out the store of Mrs. Conger
at 435 Main street, and ran it for a little over five
years. On November i, 1894, he purchased
his present stand, and has since been car-
rying on a prosperous business. He is a care-
ful, conservative man in financial matters, and
has invested his money in real estate, owning
some valuable property in Poughkeepsie. Mr.
Nagengast was married November 2, 1878,
to Miss Caroline, daughter of William and
Adeline (Martin) Swartout, and two children



have been born to them: Arminta and Lillie
May.

Mr. Nagengast is a Republican, but has
, never been very active in political affairs. He
does not belong to any fraternities, but joined
the Niagara Company, No. 2, when eighteen
years old, four years later joining the O. H.
Booth Company, but returning after eight
years to his first company, of which he is now
treasurer. He is a public-spirited citizen,
and is always ready to assist in all worthy
enterprises.



ELENNIS WHALEN. a well-known retired
'J agriculturist of the town of Dover, Dutch-
ess county, now residing at Dover Plains, was
born in 1835 in the parish of Kilteely, County
Limerick, Ireland. His family has been prom-
inent there for many generations, and his
father, the late Jeremiah Whalen, was one of
the leaders of his day in the struggle for the
liberty of his country, and was twice elected to
Parliament. In 1851 the family immigrated
to the United States and settled at Dover
Plains. Patrick Whalen, one of our subject's
brothers, resides there, and his biography con-
tains a history of this highly esteemed family.

Mr. Whalen attended the schools of his
native parish in boyhood, but on coming to
this country he at once sought employment.
The Harlem railroad was then in process of
constructionr and for some time he worked
upon it. He then spent ten years on a farm,
and in 1869 he bought a farm of 157 acres at
what is known as lllert Hills, and cultivated
this while working at times for the railroad
company. In 1873 he was appointed baggage
master and switch man at Dover Plains, and
held those positions until 1894, when an acci-
dent disabled him for active business, although
he is not at present confined to his bed. He
sold his farm in 1893 to S. R. Hanna, and
took a pleasure trip to the old country, visit-
ing all parts of the Emerald Isle and gathering
a marvelous fund of information.

In 1858 Mr. Whalen married his first wife,
Hanora Marona, by whom he had three chil-
dren: Mary E., born in 1859; Catherine F.
in i860; and Sebastian F. in 1866. His first
wife died August 11, 1891, and Mr. Whalen
married Miss Delia F. Hogan, a native of
County Limerick, Ireland. Her father, Will-
iam Hogan, was a gardener by trade, and was
one of five children, the others being John,



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



937



Dennis, Mary (Mrs. James Rahilly), and Cath-
erine. He married Margaret Lynch, who was
also a member of a family of five. James
Lynch married Bridget Sherye; Patrick mar-
ried Ellen Sherye; Catherine was the wife of
William Murphy; and Mary married James
Ryan. Mrs. Whaien was the youngest of the
five children of William and Margaret Hogan.
Mary married John O'Shea; Catherine is at
home; Margaret died at the age of thirteen;
and Patrick is at home.



'ENRY BOLENBAKER. There is prob-
ably not a finer farm in all its appoint-
ments in the town of Red Hook than the one
owned by the subject of this history, who is
still a young man, and of whom, on account of
his enterprise and industry, great things are
expected in the future. The residence is in
keeping with the taste and means of the pro-
prietor, and the whole place forms a picture
which invariably attracts the admiration of
the passing traveler.

Peter P. Bolenbaker, the father of our
subject, is one of the prosperous farmers of
Red Hook town, and on reaching man's estate
he was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth
Traver, who is one of the nine children of
Henry H. Traver and wife, also agriculturists.
This worthy couple became the parents of
five children, namely: Daniel, who died in in-
fancy; Martha, who became the wife of The-
odore Traver; Sarah, who remained single;
Henry J., of this review; and I^uella C. , who
also remained single.

In 1886 Mr. Bolenbaker, whose ^ame in-
troduces this notice, was married to Miss
Emma E. Fraleigh, a native of the town of
Clermont, Columbia Co., N. Y., where she
was educated in the common schools. One
child blesses this union — Roger Fraleigh.

Peter P. Fraleigh, the father of Mrs. Bol-
enbaker, was born in the town of Clermont,
Columbia county, and in the district schools
of the neighborhood he obtained his educa-
tion. As a lifework he also followed farming.
Early in life he was joined in wedlock with
Miss Mary Lasher, daughter of Jonas Lasher,
of Clermont town, and to them were born the
following children: Peter F. married Jennie
Saulpaugh; Jonas L. married Margaret Gard-
ner; Helen married Montgomery Finger; Will-
iam H. married Addie Van Horn; Barbara mar-

61



ried Charles Moore; Margaret married Willis
Hermance; Emma E. is next in order of birth;
Edward W. married Kittie Francis; and Mar-
tin and Mary both died in infancy.



fILLIAM AUGUSTUS MOSHER, a
prominent agriculturist of the town of
Fishkill, Dutchess county, is well known along
the Hudson, having spent many years in the
transportation business before settling down to
the quieter life of a tiller of the soil.

His family is of English origin, and his
great-grandfather, W^illiam Mosher, crossed
the Atlantic as a soldier in the British army
during the Revolutionary war, but on landing
he deserted and joined the forces under Gen.
Washington, serving as a captain throughout
the struggle. His son, Amos, married Jane
Rhinehart, and their son Miles, our subject's
father, was born at Breakneck, Dutchess coun-
t}', and became a boatman on the Hudson,
being engaged in carrying brick between Fish-
kill Landing and New York City, until his
death. He married Louisa Smith, a native of
Dutchess county, daughterof Elijah and Mar-
garet Smith, and is still living. Of their eight
children, the youngest, Frances, died in child-
hood, and the others are: William Augustus,
Amos, Margaret Jane, Annie, Ida, Henry and
Charles.

W^illiam A. Mosher was born at Burnsville,
Dutchess county, in 1841, and, after acquiring
a common-school education, left home to take
a place on a boat with Capt. \'irgil Coleman,
who carried coal from Rondout to Fishkill
Landing. He remained with him two years,
then spent three seasons on a brick boat run-
ding from Fishkill Landing to New York City,
passing the winters at home. In 1861 he
went to Long Island and worked on a farm for
his uncle, Charles Mosher. and on returning
spent four months as fireman on the steamer
" Rip Van W' inkle. " In 1862 he served on
the government transport, "Gen. Meigs, " for
several months, carrying troops and provisions
for the army between New York City and
southern ports; he also enlisted in Company
E, 19th N. Y. S. M., and was sent to Balti-
more, Fort Delaware and Havre de Grace,
receiving his discharge at Newburgh, N. Y. , on
the e.xpiration of his term of enlistment — one
hundred days. He then went on a canal boat
with Capt. Daniel Howell, and on leaving him



938



COMMEMORATIVE BTOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



worked in the Fishkill Landing Machine Shop
for a year, when he took another place upon a
government transport running from St. Louis
to Du\';ili's Bluff, Memphis, Cairo and New
Orleans. He was on this boat at Du V'all's
Bluff when the news of Lincoln's assassination
reached him. On his return home he was
married to Miss Hannah Hickman, daughter
of William and Martha ( Purdyj Hickman, and
granddaughter of Michael and Rachel Hick-
man. On the maternal side, her grandparents
were Francis and Mary (Shaw) Purdy. Six
children were born of this union: Amos, Ida,
George, Matthew, Nettie and Blanche.

After his marriage Mr. Mosher worked for
two years in the Fishkill Landing Machine
Shops as a blacksmith and machinist, and two
years on the Newburgh and Fishkill ferry as
fireman, and then went to Kansas and spent
five years in farming. On returning to the
East he worked on the construction of the
N. Y. & N. E. R. R., aboard a mud scow,
and, while thus employed, saved from drown-
ing two men, named John Cook and a Mr.
Mitchell. His next employment was on the
ferryboats "City of Newburgh" and " Fish-
kill-on-the-Hudson," as engineer, but after
three years he gave up this work to take charge
of the brickyard of William H. Aldrich, where
he remained six years. He then purchased
his present farm of 270 acres, which is bounded
by the lands of William H. Cary, George Ire-
land, Alfred Miller, James Daniels and Reuben
Knapp. His main crops are hay and grain,
but he gives considerable attention to horti-
culture, having many grape vines and a num-
ber of apple and peach trees, with other fruits.
Part of his land is as yet uncleared, and he
sells a large amount of wood and hewn timber.
His son George assists in the management of
this estate. In politics Mr. Mosher is a Re-
publican, and he is a member of the G. A. R.



^\UGENE WELLS, one of the leading citi-



Ijj zens of Rhinebeck, Dutchess county, now
living in retirement amid the charming sur-
roundings of that picturesque locality, was born
at Hudson, Columbia Co., N. Y. , January 17,
1839.

Isaac Wells, the grandfather of our subject,
was born in 1770, and among his family of
children was Richard I. Wells, Eugene's father,
who was born at Co.xsackie, Greene Co., N. Y. ,
September 25, 1795. Richard I. Wells was a



prominent lawyer of New York City, a mem-
ber of the well-known firm of Wells & Bush-
nell, and was a man of great mental ability
and sound judgment. From his office were grad-
uated some students who afterward achieved
distinction at the bar. In early years he was
a Whig and later a Republican, but he was never
active in politics. He was an intimate friend
of Stephen A. Douglas, and was prominently
identified with the landed interests of Chicago,
111., owning at one time a large amount of real
estate there. Wells street in Chicago was
named in his honor. On September 28, 1819,
he was married to Ann Maria Olcott, daugh-
ter of Josiah Olcott, a prominent citizen
of Hudson, and had ten children: Anna, the
widow of Claudius L. Monell, who was, at the
time of his death, chief justice of the Superior
Court of the City of New York; Mary, who
married Charles Roome, president of the Con-
solidated Gas Co., of New York; Caroline
(deceased); John H. (deceased); Richard (de-
ceased) ; Ophelia, who married Rev. Henry Dar-
ling, late president of Hamilton College; Fred-
erick J., who died in infancy; Thomas O., a
resident of New York City; Frances M. (de-
ceased), formerly the wife of Isaac M. Collins,
of Hudson, who is now the surrogate of Colum-
bia count}'; and Eugene, our subject. After
many years of successful practice, Mr. Wells,
in 1S37, retired to Hudson, where he passed
his declining years. His death occurred there
March 1 1, 1863. He and his wife were always
leaders in the various philanthropic movements
of the Church.

The subject of this sketch made choice of
the medical profession, and studied for two
years with the late Dr. H. B. Sands, of New
York City, but was compelled to abandon his
books on account of what is called double
astigmatism. Since 1865 he has resided at
Rhinebeck, where he has identified himself
with the best interests of the community, and
has won the esteem of all classes. He has
been a director of the First National Bank for
many years, and has held the office of president
of the village.

On May 31, 1865, he married Miss Mary
Thorn Teller, daughter of William T. and
Eliza Thorn Teller and granddaughter of Will-
iam Teller. They have one daughter — Caroline
Thorn Wells. Mr. and Mrs. Wells attend the
Reformed Church at Rhinebeck, and have
always been among the leaders in the most
exclusive social circles of that town.



COMMEMORATIVE BIOORAPBICAL RECORD.



939



FRANK TALLADAY, the well-known host
of the "Talladay House," at Dover

Plains, Dutchess county, is one of the leading
citizens of that pleasant village.

His family has been identified with the
town of Dover for many years, and his father,
Neilson Talladay, was a native of the town,
and, on finishing his education in the local
schools, he engaged in business as a carpenter,
following that trade throughout his active life.
He was a soldier in the Civil war in Company
E, 150th N. Y. V. I., and took part in many
important engagements. For some time he
served as hospital steward at Baltimore, Md.
He married Miss Elizabeth Colby, daughter of
a leading farmer of the town of Dover, and had
five children, of whom our subject was the
youngest. The others are: Phoebe (who has
not married); Janette (Mrs. C. F. Segelken);
Mary (Mrs. John H. Smith); and Elizabeth
(Mrs. Archilas Birch).

Frank Talladay was born April i, 1859, in
Dover Plains, Dutchess county. He was edu-
cated in the schools of that village, and on
completing his course of study, he engaged in
business as a butcher at Brooklyn, N. Y.
After four years in this enterprise, he moved to
Naugatuck, Conn., where he was for some
time connected with a rubber manufacturing
concern. Later he was engaged in mercantile
business at Dover, and in 1893 he rented the
hotel now known as the '' Talladay House" at
Dover Plains, which he has since conducted in
a manner to gain and keep the patronage of
the public. In 1889 he married Miss Mary
Humeston, daughter of Charles and Abbie
Humeston, of Dover Plains, and they have one
child — Frank W., born in February, 1895.

Mr. Talladay is a member of the Sons of
Veterans, of Dover, and he has always taken
great interest in politics, identifying himself
with the Republican party. He has held sev-
eral public offices. In 1891, he was elected
constable of Dover town, and served three
terms.



GRIFFIN COOKINGHAM, one of the
leaders among the substantial and pros-
perous agriculturists of the town of Rhinebeck,
Dutchess county, was born May 6, 1835, upon
the estate where he now resides, and which
has been in the possession of his family since
the days of his grandfather, Frederick Cook-
ingham, who was born, probably, in Germany,



but settled in Rhinebeck when a young man.
He married and reared a family of seven chil-
dren: John F. , a farmer in the town of Hyde
Park; Andrew, a farmer in Rhinebeck; Will-
iam, our subject's father; Rebecca, who mar-
ried Andrew Pultz, a farmer of Rhinebeck;
Omie, who married Frederick Pultz, a farmer
in Columbia county; Rennie, the wife of David
Marquet, a farmer in the town of Rhinebeck;
and a daughter who married Michael Pultz,
who was also a farmer there.

William Cookingham, our subject's father,
was born in 1802, and always lived at the old
farm, coming into possession of a portion of
it on the death of his parents. He married
Catherine Traver, daughter of Solomon Traver,
a farmer in the same locality, and had children
as follows: Elizabeth (deceased); Emeline, a
widow; Julia, who never married; Frederick, a
retired farmer of Rhinebeck; Griffin, our sub-
ject; Henry, a resident of Hyde Park; Charles,
who lives in Rhinebeck; and James (deceased).
The parents of this family are both deceased,
the father dying in 1875. Both were devout
members of the Lutheran Church.

Our subject grew to manhood at the old
homestead, and in 1856 was married to
Eleanor Westfall, a native of Nassau, Rens-
selaer Co., N. Y. , and daughter of Jacob West-
fall, a farmer, who in his later years moved to
Dutchess county. For some years after his
marriage Mr. Cookingham and his wife lived
on a farm near his birthplace, but in 1877
he returned to the old homestead as owner of
182 acres, a fine farm which he devotes to
general crops. He and his wife united with
the Reformed Church many years ago, and
were among its leading members. Mrs. Cook-
ingham died April 17, 1894, leaving two chil-
dren: Edward, now a farmer, and married to
Maria Schultz; and Eleanor, who is at home.
The first two children died — Rachel in child-
hood and William J. in 1892. In politics Mr.
Cookingham, like his father in later years,
supports the Republican party. He is one of
the active workers in all local improvements,
being especially interested in educational af-
fairs, and has served as school trustee for thir-
teen years.



i'OHN McKEVITT, an energetic and indus-
trious farmer of the town of Unionvale,
Dutchess county, was born in County Louth,
Ireland, and is the grandson of Patrick Mc-
Kevitt, also a native of the Emerald Isle, and



940



COMMEMORA FIVE BIOORAPHICAL RECORD.



a farmer and weaver by occupation. He
wedded Miss Mary Cunningham, and to them
were born seven children: Thomas, who mar-
ried a Miss Leonard; Brien, who studied for
the priesthood and had charge of a parish in
his native land; Hugh, the father of our sub-
ject; Henry, who died when young; Owen,
who died unmarried; Mrs. Mary Duf^ey; and
Mrs. Catharine Myers.

The birth of Hugh McKevitt also occurred
in County Louth, Ireland, and there he was
educated and engaged in weaving and farming.
He married Miss Ann Riley, a daughter of
John and Mary (Cassidy) Riley, farming people
of that country, and they became the parents
of seven children, as follows: (i) Patrick spent
his entire life on the Emerald Isle, where he
followed farming and droving. By his mar-
riage with Ann McBride, he had eight children
— Mary, Hugh, John, Patrick (deceased),
Peter, Catherine, Alice (deceased) and O'Brien.
(2) Brien remained single, conducting a bakery
in Ireland. (3) Henry came to the United
States in 1852, locating in New York City,
where he engaged in the liquor business. He
married Miss Rose McLaughlin, and they have
seven children — Hugh, Joseph, Annie, Henry,
Rose, Mary and John. (4) Mary became the
wife of James McCarty. (5) John, of this
sketch, is next in order of birth. (6) Cather-
ine married Thomas McDermott, and has four
children — Annie, Hugh, Mary and William.
(■J) Alice married a Mr. Mooney, and has two
children — William and Mary.

John McKevitt, the subject proper of this
sketch, acquired his education in the place of
his nativity, and there followed farming until
coming to the New World in 1854, at which
time he located on Long Island; after a year
passed there he came to Dutchess county,
where he has since resided. He is a valued
and esteemed citizen of the community, and a
credit to the land that gave him birth. He
uses his right of franchise in support of the
men and measures of the Democratic party,
but he has never aspired to public office.

Mr. McKevitt was united in marriage with
Miss Catherine Newman, a daughter of Thomas
and Mary (Carrey) Newman, farming people
of West Meath, Ireland. Of their union have
been born four children, namely: Thomas J.,
Annie, Mary R. and Catherine. The family is
one of prominence, holding a high position in
the social circles of the locality where they
make their homes.



Mrm good family, which was of English origin,
but for several generations has been located in
Connecticut. His grandfather, AbnerHinman,
was born at Southbury, New Haven countj',
and passed his life there upon a farm, where
he and his wife reared to adult age a family of
seven children: (i) Esther married Johnson
Tuttle, a farmer in Southbury, who died in
1876. (2) Sidney went to Ithaca, N. Y., and
later to the vicinity of Detroit, Mich., where
he settled in what was then an unbroken wil-
derness, and at his death, in 1880, he was a
prosperous agriculturist. (3) Preston, who is
not married, followed shoemaking at South-
bury, later in Oxford, his present home. (4)
Gennett married Smith Hine, of Bridgeport,
and both are now deceased. (5) Polly mar-
ried Smith Downe, a carpenter, and both are
deceased. (6) Horace is mentioned more fully
below. (7) Roswell (deceased) was a mechanic.

Horace Hinman, our subject's father, who
is now living in retirement, was born in South-
bury, Conn., and married a native of that
place, Mary Hughes, a lady of Scotch descent.
They first settled in Southbury and later in
Oxford, Conn., Mr. Hinman following the shoe-
maker's trade. He is a Democrat in politics,
and he and his wife are both consistent mem-
bers of the M. E. Church. They had four
children as follows: (i) Sarah married H. B.
Folly, a wholesale merchant of Danbury,
Conn. ; (2) Fannie and (3) Delia are deceased ^
and (4) Winfield B.

We will now return to the subject proper
of this sketch, who was born at Oxford. Conn.,
October 30, 1863. He attended school there
for some years, but as has been said he began
at twelve to support himself by his own labor.



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