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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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opened up by this great thoroughfare was still
in almost its native wildness. Going by rail,
he took plenty of time, stopping at various
points of interest along the way, writing, graph-
ically, descriptive articles for his paper. The
unique features of the desert plains, then
roamed over by the buffalo, the antelope, the
lively coyote, and other wild animals in their
native freedom, were set forth in entertaining
articles. He visited Salt Lake City, when
Brigham Young was living and reigning in all
his glory, and had an interview with the great
Mormon. Continuing his journey by rail to
California, he passed over the Sierra Nevadas
in the month of June, when the snow in huge
banks still lay in the gorges, and the scene
was one of wild and rugged grandeur. Arriv-
ing in San Francisco, he remained in that city
for a considerable time, and then started out
in excursions through various parts of that
remarkable country. Railroads were not as
numerous there then as now, and a large part
of the travel was done in stages over thorough-
fares which could only be termed roads by
courtesy; and on horseback through trackless
forests. He reached the famous Yosemite
Valley in this manner, part of the way by
stage, and when a point was reached where no
trace of a road existed, the remainder of the
journey was performed on the back of a mus-
tang, the only paths being simply trails where
previous traveling parties had left footprints.
Here, also, he visited the famous Mariposa



294



COMMEMORATIVE BIOORAPHICAL RECORD.



grove of big trees, the greatest known giants
of the forest, and performed the oft repeated
feat of riding on horsebaci< through a hollow
log which lay prostrate on the ground.

After establishing himself for a time in the
Yosemite \'alley, and familiarizing himself
with its grand and wonderful features, he
made frequent excursions on horseback among
the lofty mountains of the Sierra range in the
vicinity, among snow banks in summer, the
intrepid mustang climbing cliffs where a man
alone would find it difficult to keep his footing.

Mr. Owen's articles on the Yosemite Val-
ley and the big trees were pronounced to be
fine literary productions, highly entertaining to
his readers; and after his return he embodied
some of these in a lecture, which he delivered
free on several occasions. These articles are
preserved now only in the old files of the
Jouriia/.



HENRY TIEDJE, a leading confectioner
of Poughkeepsie, Dutchess county, was
born August 27, 1858, in the village of Ring-
stead, Province of Hanover. Germany, the son
of Henry and Bertha Tiedje.

Our subject was educated in the schools of
his native place, and at the age of seventeen
started out to make his way in the world, with
with no capital but his own abilities. He
bame to America to find a better field for his
energies than the Fatherland afforded, and lo-
cated first in New York City, where a brother
secured him employment in a small confection-
ery store. In New York he remained seven
years, engaged in various occupations, and
then went to Poughkeepsie to work as a candy-
maker for Charles H. Gerdes. On May 24,
1883, Mr. Tiedje bought the business of his
employer, and has continued it since at the
old stand, No. 358 Main street, with the ex-
ception of three years at No. 366 Main street.
In 1893 Mr. Tiedje bought the building in
which his store is located. His success has
been remarkable, and is based solely upon
industry, economy and good business man-
agement. He manufactures his own plain
candies, soda water and ices, in which he has an
extensive trade.

On October 23, 1889, he was married, by
Rev. F. B. Wheeler, to Miss Mary E. War-
ren, daughter of Albert Warren, a well-known
citizen of Poughkeepsie. They have one child,
Estelle E., born September 20, 1S90. Mrs.



Tiedje is a true helpmeet for her husband, and
her energy and business ability have been im-
portant factors in her husband's advancement,
and he takes manly pride in acknowledging the
fact. Mr. Tiedje is a naturalized citizen of
the United States, but he does not take any
active part in politics, his attention being
given to his business interests.



BENJAMIN A. SLEIGHT (deceased), for-
merly a prominent business man and agri-
culturist of the town of Wappinger, Dutchess
county, was a member of one of the oldest
and most highly esteemed families of that vi-
cinity, and as a substantial citizen of his own
day he sustained well the reputation won by
his forefathers. He was born in 1786, in the '
town of Poughkeepsie, and his active life cov-
ered a period of great importance in the devel-
opment of that region.

Abraham Sleight, father of Benjamin A.,
and a native of Kingston, Ulster county, was
a prominent citizen of the town of Fishkill
during the latter part of the eighteenth cen-
tury, and served as a soldier in the Revolu-
tionary war, a grateful country awarding him
a pension in his later years. He followed
farming all his life, settling in Fishkill shortly,
after his marriage with Miss Ruth Roe. a na-
tive of Dutchess county. Both became active
supporters of the Reformed Dutch Church in
Fishkill. They had eight children: Sarah,
who married James M. Jones, of Dutchess
county; Abraham, a farmer, who died in early
manhood; Benjamin A., our subject; Ann,
Ruth. John (an invalid), and Nellie (none of
whom ever married), and Sophie E. (Mrs. R.
D. E. Stoutenburgh). Among other represent-
atives of the Sleight family in that locality was
Peter R. Sleight, a cousin of our subject, and
the father of Alexander Sleight, of Lagrange.

Benjamin A. Sleight was reared upon the
farm, and attended the schools of Kingston,
where he acquired a good academic education.
After leaving school he engaged in mercantile
business in the town of Poughkeepsie. He
married Miss Caroline Ackerman, daughter of
James Ackerman, a native of the town of
Poughkeepsie, and a leading farmer of the
town of Lagrange, where she was born. Her
grandfather. Gurioyn Ackerman. was a leading
resident of the town of Poughkeepsie in his
time, and her ancestors were among the most
highly esteemed of the Holland-Dutch settlers



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



295



of Dutchess county. Not long after his mar-
riage Mr. Sleight settled in the town of Fish-
kill, where his well-known integrity of charac-
ter and judicial mind caused him to be elected
to the office of justice of the peace, and his
faithful discharge of the duties in that position
occupied most of his time for many years;
but later he devoted himself to the manage-
ment of his farm. In politics he was a Dem-
ocrat, and like his parents he adhered to the
old Reformed Church. His wife died in 1854,
and four years thereafter he, too, passed away.

Eight children were born to their union:
Edgar, who died in 1892, was a farmer in the
town of Wappinger; Louise is at home; Frank,
a hardware merchant in Poughkeepsie, died in
1S77; Amelia was married to Francis B. Pye,
the famous inventor; Anna married M. V. B.
Schryver, of Rhinebeck, and died in 1894;
Eliza is at home; John is a resident of Green-
bush, N. Y. ; and Sidney died therein 1873.

The late Francis B. Pye, whose name is
known in all parts of fhe civilized world as the
inventor of the time lock, was a native of
Newark, N. J., and a descendant of an old
English family. His grandfather, Thomas Pye,
was the pioneer lock manufacturer of America,
while he (Francis B.) was the first to manu-
facture cast-iron locks in this country, and was
the head of the Trenton Lock Co., one of the
most important firms engaged in that line of
business. Since his death, which occurred in
January, 1877, Mrs. Pye has lived at the old
homestead near Fishkill Plains, a fine estate
with a tasteful and commodious brick residence.
She possesses unusual executive ability, and
manages the farm of 167 acres with great skill.
Her specialty is horticulture, and she has 1,200
apple trees in her orchards, which are among
the most e.xtensive in the locality.



THOMAS I. STORM (deceased), who in
in his lifetime was a wealthy and influ-
ential citizen of the town of East Fishkill,
Dutchess county, residing near Stormville, was
one of the leading agriculturists there, as were
several generations of his ancestors.

John Storm, his great-grandfather, was one
of three brothers who came from Holland at
an early period and settled upon a large tract
of land in the wilderness — Goris in Westches-
ter county, N. Y. ; Isaac in York county, Penn.,
and John at our subject's present farm in East
Fishkill.



Thomas I. Storm, our subject's grandfather,
was born and reared there, and after his mar-
riage to Dianah Adriance, November 9, 1788,
made it his permanent home. Seven children
were born to him: Isaac, a wholesale mer-
chant in New York City; Thomas, a specula-
tor in New York City, and the owner of a farm
in Orange county; Charles, a tobacco mer-
chant in New York City; Gallette, who mar-
ried Gilbert Wilkinson, of Poughkeepsie, a
boatman by occupation; Catherine, the wife
of Henry Teller, a farmer in Orange county;
Theodorus, our subject's father; and Emeline,
who married George Doughty, a farmer.

Theodorus Storm settled upon the old farm,
and married Susan Storm, a native of Fishkill,
and the daughter of Col. John Storm, a de-
scendant of one of the three brothers above
mentioned. Seven children were born of this
union: Susan, who married John T. Storm,
now living in retirement in Beekman; Maria
L. , the wife of William Humphrey, a farmer
in Pleasant Valley; Catherine (deceased); Theo-
dore, who is blind; Cornelia, who married
Henry Wooley, a farmer in Beekman (both
now deceased); Thomas I., our subject; ^nd
one child that died in infancy. The father of
this family died August 10, 1865. He was a
Democrat in principle, though not especially
active in political affairs, and he and his wife
were both prominent members of the Reformed
Dutch Church.

Thomas I. Storm was born April 14, 1827,
and passed his entire life upon the old estate
to which the residence of so many of his fam-
ily have lent pleasant associations. On June
10, 1857, he was united in wedlock with Susan
Maria Arthur, a lady of Irish descent, and a
native of Dutchess county. Her father, John
Arthur, a well-known agriculturist, was a
cousin to ex-President Chester A. Arthur; her
mother was a daughter of Major Abram Ad-
riance, of East Fishkill. Of the four children
by this marriage, all are residents of the town
of East Fishkill. Arthur is a horticulturist;
Walter follows agriculture; Adriana married
Eugene Storm, formerly a merchant of New
York, who died January 9, 1890, leaving a
widow and one child, William T. Storm, born
September 2, 1885; and Doretha, married to
Benjamin D. Haxtun, a farmer, and has two
children: Maria Arthur Haxtun, born October
22, 1894, and Adriana Storm Haxtun, boTn
February 22, 1897.

Thomas I. Storm died very suddenly June



296



COMMEMORATIVE BIOORAPHICAL RECORD.



17, 1896. He took an active part in the local
Democratic organization, and ser%'ed as town
assessor. He was a leading adherent of the
Reformed Dutch Church, of Hopewell, as is
also his widow.



JOHN G. DUNCAN (deceased; was born in
the town of Unionvale, Dutchess Co.,
N. Y., in the year 1793. He received a
good common-school education, and while yet
a young man entered the general store of
Jacob Fowler as clerk. By strict attention to
business he rose rapidly, and soon became
owner of the store at Hoxie Corners. By de-
grees he acquired several farms in the vicinity,
among them being the Oakley and the Stryker
places. His health failing, he retired, when
about thirty-four years of age, to his farm at
Verbank, where he passed his declining years,
dj'ing December 19, 1857. Shortly after his
death his widow removed to Poughkeepsie,
and died there January' 4, 1875.

Mr. Duncan in his political preferences
was first a Whig, afterward a Republican, and
served as justice of the peace for many years.
He was fond of reading, and for a long time
was custodian of the circulating library known
as the Franklin Library, and he was also in
charge of the District School Library.

He was progressive, being quick to appre-
ciate and advance whatever pertained to the
welfare of the community, and his sterling
qualities earned for him the respect and con-
fidence of his fellow townsmen. In his domes-
tic relations he was a kind husband and father,
always preferring the quiet seclusion of home
to the more bustling activities of his business
life. He suffered not a little from rheumatism,
and was also quite deaf, which latter infirmity
accounted for his absence from many public
assemblages.

The old house on the \'erbank farm (which
is still in the possession of the family) was con-
sidered unusually handsome in its day, its
architectural features being admired by many
from a distance. The walls, which were hard
finished, are still well preserved, a;id the past
se\'enty years have made little impression on
the solid timbers. The land now covered by
the Verbank station, as well as a good portion
of the Verbank Rural Cemetery, originall}- be-
longed to "Ingleside," the farm owned by the
subject of our sketch.

The Duncan famil)', of which John C.



Duncan was a member, originally came from
Scotland, first locating in Canada, thence mov-
ing to Boston, and from there to Dutchess
county. William Duncan married Mary
Wooley, their son George marrying Lucy Rey-
nolds, leaving a son John G.

In 1 8 14 Mr. Duncan married Mary \'ail,
second daughter of Piatt Vail. To Mr. and
Mrs. Duncan were born seven children as
follows:

(i) Maria Jane was born in Unionvale in
1 8 16. She attended Miss Proctor's school at
Poughkeepsie. She was married to Leonard
B. Sherman, of the town of Washington,
and died in 1847, leaving two daughters, (a)
Mary and fbj Matilda. (a) Mary married
Lewis Germond; (b) Matilda married Chauncey
Colwell.

(2) Ovid was born December i, 18 19, in
the town of Unionvale. He spent his boy-
hood on his father's farm, attending school at
Amenia Seminary in Dutchess county. He
early became associated with his father in
mercantile pursuits, and later purchased the
Alonzo Haight farm. For many j-ears he was
widely known as a dealer in cattle. He mar-
ried Ann Davis, leaving two daughters, Caro-
line (now deceased) and Annie Kate; also four
sons — John, Jesse (deceased), Everett and
Theron. All those who are living reside in
Dutchess county.

(3) Antoinette died in infancy.

(4) George Piatt was born June 23, 1825.
His school days were passed at Amenia Semi-
nary. On the death of his father, the home-
stead came into his possession. In 1864 he
married Anna Brown Downing, of Lagrange,
and took up his residence in this town, dying
there March 23, 1874. He was honorable in
his business affairs, faithful in his friendships
and respected by all. He left two sons,
Charles Henry (born July 1 1 , 1 866) and George
Richard (born February 14, 1868), both of
whom attended private schools in Poughkeep-
sie, and later St. Stephens College, Dutchess
county. The former was graduated from St:
Stephens in the class of '87, and from Gen.
Theological Seminary in 1S90. His first
charge was in Geneva, N. Y., from which
place he was called, in 1891, to St. James
Church, Watkins, N. Y. After spending five
years there he was elected to the rectorship of
Grace Church, Millbrook, N. Y. As the tastes
of the latter inclined toward business, he left
school at an early age to take up newspaper




f^ «? - -^^



COMMEMORATIVE BIOOBAPEICAL RECORD.



297



work, which he followed with success until his
health became affected. He now resides in
North Granbj', Massachusetts.

(5) Catherine Amelia was born at the home-
stead, Unionvale, June i, 1827. She joined
the Methodist Church at an early age, attend-
ing school at Nine Partners and Anienia Sem-
inary. In company with her mother and sis-
ters she removed to Poughkeepsie in 1 S64, be-
coming a communicant of St. Paul's Church in
1877, where she continued a devoted member
up to her death, which occurred March 26,
1897. She was unmarried.

(6) Rebecca Matilda was born at the
homestead, town of Unionvale. She attend-
ed Nine Partners School and Amenia Semi-
nary, and was a member of the M. E. Church
in her youth. Removed to Poughkeepsie and
was married June 22, 1864, to Lewis F.
Streit, an elder in the Presbyterian Church, of
which Church she subsequently became a
member.

(7) Frances Emma, the youngest child,
was born at the homestead in Verbank, town
of Unionvale. She was a member of the
Methodist Church at that place. Attended
school at Tookers Female Academy, Pough-
keepsie. In 1864 she came to Poughkeepsie
to reside, and in 1877 she was confirmed in
St. Paul's Church, Poughkeepsie. She is liv-
ing at her home in the above-named place,
and is unmarried.

The father of Mary (Vail) Duncan was
Piatt Vail (born 1769, died 1822), who was
married to Catherine Reynolds (born 1767,
died 1852). His father was Capt. Israel Vail,
of Beekman Precinct, who served with dis-
tinction in the war of the Revolution, and
whose record appears as follows, according to
the secretary of the New York Society, ' ' Sons
of the Revolution:" "Captain Israel Vail, 5th
Regt., Dutchess Co., N. Y., Militia. (Col.
James Vanderburg) March loth, 1778."



GEORGE SCHLEGEL. There is no ele-
ment which enters into our composite
national fabric which has been of more practi-
cal strength, value and utility than that fur-
nished by the sturdy, persevering and honora-
ble sons of Germany, and in the progress of our
Union this element has played an important
part. The subject of this review, who comes
from stanch German stock, was born at Carls-
ruhe, Grand Duchy of Baden, April 20, 1823.



There he was educated, and learned the shoe-
maker's trade.

Hoping to benefit his financial condition,
Mr. Schlegel, in 1844, sailed for America, and
on landing at New York secured work there at
his trade for five years, at the end of which
time he came to Poughkeepsie. Here he
opened a retail shoe store, and also engaged in
the manufacture of boots and shoes, conduct-
ing his business on Main street, near River
street, until 1870, when he disposed of his
stock. He then came to his present location
at Nos. 544 and 544,, Main street, where he
has since successfully carried on a variety
store, and has built up an extensive trade.

In 1846 Mr. Schlegel was united in mar-
riage with Johanna Reinhard, a lady of Ger-
man birth, who died in Poughkeepsie in 1867.
Four years later he was again married, his
second union being with Emma Meyerhuber,
a native of Carlsruhe, Germany, and to them
have been born two children, George C,
born August 23, 1873, a druggist of Pough-
keepsie; and Emma, born June 5, 1876. Mrs.
Schlegel is the proud possessor of a medal and
cross given her by King William I, of Ger-
many, for the services she rendered during the
war of 1870, while in the hospital taking care
of the sick and wounded. In religious belief
both she and her husband are Protestants, and
they have made many warm friends in their
adopted country. Politically, Mr. Schlegel
uses his right of franchise in support of Demo-
cratic principles, and has maintained a lively
interest in the advancement of the industrial
and popular interests of the city of his adoption.
He is a man of genial, social nature, a member
of the Germania Society, and is a representa-
tive German-American citizen.



PETER ADRIANCE, senior member of the
firm of Peter Adriance & Son, plumbers,
tinners, steam, hot water and gas fitters, whose
place of business is No. 393 Main street, Pough-
keepsie, was born in the town of East Fish-
kill, Dutchess county, April 19, 1843, on the
farm where his great-grandfather. Ram I.
Adriance, located, the first of the family to
come to Dutchess county.

There also was born, in 1787, Peter Adri-
ance, the grandfather of our subject, and
there his entire life was devoted to agriculture.
He married Catherine Storm, and they reared
a family of three children: Thomas, the fa-



298



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



ther of our subject; Mary A., who wedded
James Wilkinson, of Dutchess county; and
Amelia, who married Willett Culver, a farmer
of Dutchess county. The parents of these
were both faithful members of the Reformed
Dutch Church.

Upon the old homestead Thomas Adriance
(father of our subject) was born in 1811. He
married Catherine Culver, a native of the
town of Hyde Park, Dutchess county, and a
(lauf^hter of a farmer of that locality. Her
people were members of the Society of Friends.
Five children were born to this union: Peter;
Edgar, who deals in fancy goods in Pough-
keepsie; Amelia, wife of S. A. Walker, of
Brooklyn, N. Y. ; Robert, a merchant of Fish-
kill, Dutchess county; and Mary A., who died
in infancy. The father followed farming ex-
clusively through life; in his political senti-
ment he was an ardent Democrat. He died
in 1861, his wife in 1885.

Like most farmer boys Peter Adriance
passed his early life, and the education he ac-
quired in the old district school of the neigh-
borhood was supplemented by a course in the
Dutchess Academy, and at the Hudson River
Institute at Claverack, N. Y., after which he
returned to the home farm, where he con-
tinued to work until twenty-five years of age.
In 1 861 he married Miss Alice Adriance,
who was born in the town of Fishkill, a
daughter of John V. Adriance, an agricultu-
rist. One child was born to them, Eugene,
who is now in business with his father. After
living upon the farm for about four years, Mr.
Adriance entered the grocery store of Dart &
Co., at Glenham, Dutchess county, as clerk,
but soon after came to Poughkeepsie, where
he was similarly employed by D. O. Smith
for about a year. For two years he then
clerked in the hardware store of Budd & Trow-
bridge, and then for the same length of time
was with L. T. Mosher, in the pork-packing
industry, after which he returned to the hard-
ware store, which was then owned by Trow-
bridge & Sherrill. He soon secured a third
interest in the firm, the name being changed
lo Trowbridge, Sherrill & Adriance; but at the
end of three years Mr. Sherrill sold out. The
firm of Trowbridge & Adriance did business
until 1893, when our subject purchased his
partner's interest, and his son was given a
share in the business, which has now grown
to extensive proportions. The liberal patron-
age which they receive is well deserved, as



they strive to please their customers, and their
work is all first-class in every particular.

Mr. Adriance is public-spirited in an emi-
nent degree, and has done much in behalf of
the general welfare of the community. He is
popular, and is the center of a large circle of
friends and acquaintances who honor and es-
teem him for his many virtues and genuine
worth. He is largely interested in the Co-
operative Savings and Loan Association, and
prominently identified with the Masonic Order
and the Royal Arcanum. He and his estima-
ble wife contribute to the Reformed Church,
which they attend. The line of descent of
which our subject is a member, is as follows:
(i) Adrian Reyersz, emigrated from Holland,
1646; (2) Abram Adriance, born 1680, settled
in Flatbush, N. Y. ; (3) Ram L Adriance,
born 1753, was the first to come to Dutchess
county; (4) Peter Adriance, born 1787, in
Dutchess county; (5) Thomas Adriance, born
in 181 1, in Dutchess county; (6; Peter Adri-
ance, our subject.



GEORGE SCHLUDE. A brilliant example
_^ of a self-made American citizen, and a
grand exemplification of the progress that an
ambitious foreigner can make in this country
of unbounded opportunities, is shown in the
case of our subject, one of the leading Ger-
man-American residents of Poughkeepsie. His
singular success is due to his own energy and
the high ideal which his lofty and laudable ambi-
tion placed before him. Success m any walk of
life is an indication of earnest endeavor and
persevering effort — characteristics that Mr.
Schlude possesses in an eminent degree.

Our subject was born in Hochberg, Hohen-
zollern, Sigmeringen, Prussia, Geri7iany, Feb-
ruary 2, 1832, and is the elder of the two chil-
dren of Boletus and Elizabeth (Grazer)Schlude,
both natives of the same locality as is George,
where the father died in 1834. The younger
child, Josephine, wedded John Rumsburger, a
merchant of Germany, but both are now de-
ceased.

In the Fatherland George Schlude grew to
manhood, securing the usual education afford-



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