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Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York online

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Mass. He married Mary Briggs, who was
9, 167 1, a daughter of Thomas
Of their ten children, the eldest son,
David, born September 19, 1689, at New
Bedford, Mass., engaged in farming, and after
his marriage to Sarah Allen came to Dutchess
county and made his home at Quaker Hill.
Two children were born to him, John and
Jonathan. John Akin, the great-grandfather
of Miss Mary J. Akin, of Pawling, married
Margaret Hicks, by whom he had one son,
John; that son, John, married Mollie Ferris,
and had the following children: Albro, Sarah,
Margaret, Ann, Daniel and Amanda. John
Akin also had three daughters: Ann, Mary and
Abagail.

Albro Akin, our subject's father, was born
at Quaker Hill, March 6, 1778, and in his day
was one of the leading citizens of Dutchess
county. On March 24, 181 5, Gov. Daniel D.
Tompkins appointed him to the office of judge
of the court of common pleas for life, as was
the custom in those days. When he was sixty
years old he resigned, having been judge for
twenty-three years. This position he filled
with distinguished ability. His first wife,
Paulina Vanderburgh, who was born Decem-
ber 15, 1783, died in 18 10, leaving three chil-
dren: Albert John, who married Jane Will-



372



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



iams; Almira V., the wife of Joshua L. Jojies;
and Helena Maria, who married John W. Tay-
lor. Mr. Akin's second wife, Sarah (Merritt),
died without issue, and he married a third wife,
Jemima Thorne Jacacks, daughter of David
and Mary (Thorne) Jacacks. Se%'en children
were born of this union: (i) Mary J., who
has always been a leader in the social life of
the locality, filling every duty with grace and
dignity. Among other events in which she
took part was the ceremony attending the
opening of the Harlem railroad, where she was
chosen to hand the shovel to the one who
broke the first sod for that undertaking. (2)
William Henry, who married (first) Martha
Taber, and (second) Sarah Miller, and had
two children: Albro, who married Emma Read,
and has two children — Albert and Helen; and
Amy, who married Benjamin Aymer Sands,
and has one daughter — Mary E. (3) Cornelius
is still single. (41 Gulielma Maria Springet
Penn was named after William Penn's wife,
whose name was Gulielma Maria Springet
Penn. (5) Amanda, who married Dr. Charles
W. Stearns. (6) Annie, who married Will-
iam Hamilton Ogden, and has one daughter —
Harriet Hamilton. (7) Caroline, who married
Adolph Wilm-Beets, from Hamburg, Ger-
many.



LEACH FAMILY, THE, which has long
held a prominent position in the town of

Pawling, Dutchess count}', is one of Colonial
stock, and by intermarriage it is related to
others of our leading pioneer families, notably
the Akin and Ferris lines, so well known in the
history of this region. The genealogical rec-
ords of these families give interesting data of
the early times.

Amos Leach (I), the head of the Leach
family, came from Wales to America with two
brothers, and landed in Massachusetts. After
living there for some time he moved to Con-
necticut and settled in Leach Hollow, town of
Sherman. He married Mercy Martin, of Do-
ver, Dutchess county, and to their union were
born seven sons and five daughters, as follows:
(i) Amos Leach (II) married Deborah Wan-
zer, November 25, 1752. (2) John Leach
married (first) Martha Wanzer, April 2, 1760,
and (second! Hannah Page, July 9, 1772; he
removed in 1785 to New Fairfield, Vt., with
his large family of children, where many of
his later descendants are still living; he was



the executor of his father's will, which is now
on file at Danbury, Conn. (3) Simeon Leach
married Elizabeth Prindle, January 22, 1766.
(4) Ephraim Leach married Dorothy Bennett,
F"ebruary 8, 1762. (5) Ebenezer Leach is
more fully spoken of farther on. (6) James
never married. (7) Ichabod Leach married
Ruth Marsh. January i, 1776. (8) Mercy
Leach married Ebenezer Wright, (g) Sarah
Leach married Silas Hall, January 4, 1757.
(10) Jemima Leach married David Prindle,
January 19, 1763. (11) Miriam Leach mar-
ried Samuel Marsh, November 13, 177 1. (12)
Johannah Leach married Thomas Northup,
August 25, 1757.

Ebenezer Leach, fifth son of Amos Leach
(1), married Mary Marsh, daughter of Elihu
and Mary Marsh, whose children were: Elihu,
Joseph, Samuel, John, Daniel, Amos, Sophia,
Eunice, Lydia, Mary and Ruth. Ebenezer
Leach and his wife Mary (Marsh) had three
children: Lucy, who married Husted Wan-



mentioned below;
Gilbert Lane, and



and
had



zer; William, who is
Susanna, who married
eleven children.

William Leach (I), second child of Ebe-
nezer Leach, was married 25th of the loth
month, 1792, to Charlotte Stedwell, who was
born 19th of 5th month, 1772, daughter of
Gilbert and Mary Stedwell. To William Leach
and his wife were born the following children:
(i)Anna Leach, born 27th of 9th month, 1793.
married Abraham Wanzer (no issue). (2)
Mary Leach, born iith of lOth month, 1795,
died November 30, 1875, aged eighty years;
she married Philo Woodin, of Columbia, N.
Y., February 26, 1822, and had three chil-
dren. (3) Moses W. is more fully spoken of
below. (4) Lucy Leach, born 4th of 7th
month, 1800, died May 28, 1885, aged eighty-
five years lacking five weeks, married Ebene-
zer Wanzer, October 26th, 1820, and had
three children. (5) Susan Leach, born 2ist
of 1st month, 1803, died February 27, 1885,
married George Mooney, November 17, 1825,
and had five children. (6) Phebe Leach, born
13th of 6th month, 1805, died January 16,
1867, married Jacob Wanzer, October 26,
1826, and had six children. (71 Ira Leach,
born 4th of loth month, 1807, died May 7,
1857, married Elizabeth Haviland, November
12, 1830, and had three children. (8) Merritt
H. Leach, born 11th of 12th month, 1809,
died October 13, 1850, aged forty-one years,
ten months; he married (first) Phebe Dorland




MARTIN LEACH.



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



373



Purdy, and (second) Susan W. Marriot, Octo-
ber lO, 1838, by whom he had three children.
(9) Paulina Leach, born 26th of 12th month,
181 1, died July 14, 1882, in the seventy-first
year of her age; she married Dr. David Sands,
of New York City, June 16, 1834, and had
eleven children, (ro) William Leach (II), born
4th of 6th month, 1S15, died October 19,
1874, aged fifty-nine years, four months and
thirteen days, married Catherine Peck, of
Brookfield, Conn., and had three children.
(11) Jane Charlotte Leach, born 31st of ist
month, i8i8,died March 9, 1852, aged thirty-
four years, one month, married David Sanford
Dunscomb, of Reading, Conn., and had three
children. The father of this family died No-
vember 20, i860, aged eighty-nine years and
thirteen days. The mother passed to her final
rest in September, 1846, aged seventj'-four
years and four months.

Moses W. Leach, third child of William
Leach (I), was born i8th of 3rd month, 1798,
died October 18, 1S4S, aged fifty years and
seven months. He married Phebe Akin, Sep-
tember 26, 1 82 1, and they became the parents
of seven children, as follows: (i) Peter A., born
January 16, 1824, died March 29, 1888, aged
sixty-four years, two months and sixteen days.
(2) Anna A., born October 19, 1825, died Au-
gust 31, i860. (3) LiLLius Cornelia, born
August 22, 1829, is the one who furnished the
data for this memoir. (4) Isaac A., born No-
vember 20, 1833, died July 22, 1855. (5 & 6)
Elizabeth F. and Abigail (twins), born April
9, 1837; the former died May 17, 1856, aged
nineteen years, one month and four days, the
latter died August 8, 1837, aged four months.
(7) Martin, whose portrait here appears, was
born September 6, 1839, at Kinderhook, Co-
lumbia Co., N. Y. , and is the only male de-
scendant living of this Leach family. He had a
high-school education, is a farmer by occupa-
tion; he is living at the old Akin homestead, as
is also his sister, Lillius C. In religion and
politics, father and son represent the same.

Moses W. Leach, the father of this inter-
esting family, was of an ingenious turn of
mind, and invented the first mowing machine.
He had a good education for his day, and was
well-informed on all questions of the times in
which he lived. In religious faith he was a
member of the Friends Society, and in politics
he was a stanch Democrat, but no office-
seeker.

Jonathan Akin (I), son of David and Sarah



Akin, of Quaker Hill, the great-grandfather of
L. C. Leach and her brothers and sisters, was
represented in the government; also his grand-
son, Jonathan Akin (II), the son of Isaac A. and
Anna Wing Akin, of Pawling. The fore-
fathers were people of large estates, and agri-
culturists by profession. The Akin family were
people of high standing, and were well known
at home and abroad.

Genealogy of the Akin Family, of
Dartmouth. — John Akin, of Scotland, emi-
grated to America about 1680, and settled at
Dartmouth, Bristol Co., Mass. He died June
13, 1744, aged eighty-three years. He was
twice married, first to Hannah Hriggs, and
(second) to Miss Sherman. He had fifteen
children, namely: (i) David, born September

19, 1689, married Sarah .Allen, and they set-
tled on Quaker Hill. (2) Thomas, born March

20, 1702, married Abigail Allen, of Dartmouth,
in 1727. (3) James, born August i, 1706,
married, November 14, 1728, Anne Fish; his
second wife was Ruth Sandford. (4) Benjamin
married Eunice Taber, September 13, 1739;
second wife, Lydia Almy; third wife, widow
Barker, from whom he separated in about one
year; he died in 1800, aged eighty-seven years.
(5) Ebenezer, who was a militia captain, died
November 16, 1770. (6) Timothy, born June
6, 1695, died a bachelor. (7) Elihu, born Au-
gust 6, 1720, married Ruth Penny, in 1744;
for his second wife he married Miss Wilcox,
when he was seventy years old. (8) Joseph
was lost at sea. (9) Deborah, born December
30, 1692. (10) Mary, born January 23, 1697,
married a Mr. Aldin, and died aged over ninety
years, (ii) Hannah, born March 12, 1699.
(12) Judith, born January i, 1691, married
John Getchel, April 10, 1727; she died aged
ninety-three years. (13) Elizabeth, born May
20, 1704. (14) Susanna, born September 27,
1718, married Hicks, of Fall River. (15)
Abigail.

David Akin, eldest son of John Akin, came
to Quaker Hill and there settled. He and his
wife Sarah (Allen) reared a family of ten ch-1-
dren, as follows: (i) John Akin married Mar-
garet Hicks, of Portsmouth, R. I., January 29,
1742, she died October 8, 1803, and he passed
away April 7, 1779. (2) Mary Akin married
Abraham Thomas, at Dartmouth, July 24,
1740. (3) Elisha Akin married Elizabeth
Tripp, July 5, 1734. (4) Josiah Akin married
Judith Hurdleston, of Dartmouth, in 1746. (5)
Abigail Akin married Murry Lester. (6) Sarah



374



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



Akin died young. (7) Hannah Akin married
James Birdsall. (8) James Akin married
Patience Howard. (9) David Akin (II) mar-
ried Deborah Gray. (10) Jonathan Akin
(born July 26, 1737) married Lillius Ferris,
daughter of Benjamin (I) and Phebe (Beecher)
Ferris. They had eight children, whose
names and dates of birth and their matrimon-
ial partners are here given: Elizabeth, April
3, 1758, married Peleg Howland, son of Na-
thaniel Howland. (2) Isaac, August 27, 1759,
married Anna Wing (daughter of Jersham
Wing and Rebecca, his wife), moved to Canada,
and their two children were — Martha, who
married Daniel Merritt, and Jonathan Akin (II),
who married Harriet Taber. (31 Martha,
March i, 1761, married William Taber, son
of Thomas Taber. (4) Benjamin, October
26, 1762, married Martha Palmer, daughter
of John and Hope Palmer; moved to Green-
blish; Benjamin Akin was drowned in the Hud-
son river. (5) Abigail, March 9, 1764, mar-
ried Mathew Pendergast, and had two children
— William and Lillius. (6) Sybil, November
26, 1767. married William Field. (7) William,
June 13, 1769, married Matilda Gary, daughter
of the eldest Dr. Ebenezer Gary (lived in
Greenbush). (8) Peter is more fully referred
to below.

Peter Akin, of Pawling, Dutchess count}',
was the youngest child of Jonathan and Lillius
(Ferris) Akin, grandson of David and Sarah
(.Allen) Akin, of Quaker Hill, and great-grand-
son of John Akin, of Scotland, who came to
America about 1680, and settled at Dart-
mouth, Bristol Go., Mass. He was born Jan-
uary 8, 1771, and married Abigail Ferris, only
child of Mathew and Sarah (Kelly) Ferris.
They became the parents of the following chil-
dren: (i) Sarah Akin married Jesse Skid-
more, and had four children, viz.: Peter A.,
who married Ruth Moore; Andrew J., who
married Fannie Wing; and Elizabeth and Abi-
gail (^both deceased). (2) Mathew F. Akin.
(3) Phebe Akin, born September i, 1803,
married Moses W. Leach, died February 21,
1858, aged fifty-four years [record of children,
etc., given in Leach genealogy]. (4) Lillius
Akin married Daniel P. Haviland, and had
nine children, as follows: Elizabeth F. mar-
ried Thomas Wetherald; William T. married
Elizabeth D. Hoag; Abigail A. married Philip
H. Haviland; Isaac H. died August 15, 1858,
aged eighteen years; Jonathan A. married
Angeline Hungerford; Daniel J. was drowned;



Lydia W. married Merritt Haviland; Lillie A.
married Samuel R. Neave; and Joseph H.
married Ella Patchen. (5) William P. Akin,
born July 23, 1810, died August 16, 1882,
aged seventy-two years and twenty-three days;
he married Lydia Moore, October 23. 1833,
and to their union came the following chil-
dren: Ruth M. Akin married Franklin Haight
(deceased); Abigail F. .Akin married Charles
Wild; Jonathan Akin married Anna Tweedy
(both now deceased); Lydia Akin married
Cyrus Hiliker (deceased); Anna M. Akin mar-
ried Daniel Edward Wanzer (both now de-
ceased). (6) Isaac Akin (2) died February 17,
1S63, aged forty-nine years. (7) John Akin
died March 28, 1829. (8) Peer Akin died in
October, 1805. (9) Infant son, died 1797.
(10) Infant daughter, died 1799. The father.
Peter Akin, died December 2, i860, aged
eighty-nine years, ten months and twenty-five
days. The mother, Abigail, passed away July
16, 1844, aged seventy years.

Gene.alogv of the Ferris F.amilv. —
Samuel Ferris and Jerusha Reed, Presbyterian
or Puritans, came from Reading, England,
probably about the year 1678. There are
records in Stratford showing that the Ferris
family were in America in 1650.

Zachariah Ferris, son of Samuel Ferris,
married Sarah Noble in 1698, and had eight
children, whose names with dates of birth are
as follows: (i) Deborah, June, 1700; ^2) Jo-
seph Ferris, September 27, 1703, married
Hannah Weltch, November 11, 1725; (3) David
Ferris, May 10, 1707; (4) Benjamin P^erris,
November 10, 1708; (5) Sarah Ferris, Novem-
ber 10, 1 7 10 (the first white child born in New
Milford. Conn.); (6) Hannah Ferris, August 6,
171 2; (7) John Ferris, February 6, 17 14,
more fully spoken of below; (8) Zachariah,
September 30, 171 7. Five children of this
family, viz. : David, Benjamin, Hannah, John
and Zachariah became eminent and valuable
Quaker preachers. Their lovely mother also
became a Friend or Quaker in the early days
of that society.

Benjamin Ferris, fourth chiUl of Zachariah
Ferris, married Phebe Beecher, of Litchfield,
Conn. They had eight children, whose names
with dates of birth are here given: Zebulon,
born March 19, 1729; Reed, born August 16,
1730, married Anna Tripp; Susannah, born
September 8, 1731, married Elijah Doty;
Lillius, born July 9, 1736, married Jonathan
Akin, son of David Akin; Benjamin, born Sep-



C'O.V.VEMORA TIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



375



teniber 25, 1738; Gilbert, born March 15,
1740; Phebe, born and died 1734; and Ed-
mond, born July 4, 1748.

Benjamin (III) Ferris, son of Benjamin (II),
married Mar}' Howland, and seven children
were born to them, as follows: Walter, Jan-
uary I, 1768; Lilliiis, September 25, 1769;
Wayman, September, 1771; Edwin, February
20, 1778: Peleg, January 21, 1781; Ebor, May
26, 1784; Phebe, January 28, 1788.

John Ferris, seventh child of Zachariah (I),
and grandson of Samuel Ferris, was tortured
and killed by the Indians betwen 1740 and
1750. He married, and had two children —
Zachariah and Huldah (the last named married
a Mr. Beardsley:. Zachariah married Huldah
Adams, granddaughter of John Adams, from
Wales, who lived to the age of i 10 }ears. To
their union were born the following children:
(i) Mary, who married Seth Whittock, and
had one daughter — Nannie, who married Philo-
men Prindle, and had eleven children; (2)
Betse}', who married Ebor Ferr'is, son of Ben-
jamin Ferris, of Quaker Hill, thus bringing to-
gether the two branches of the family. They
had twelve children, of whom three died in
childhood, and one, Zachariah, in 1825, at the
age of seventeen. (31 Julia Ann, married Cal-
vin Hyde, and had nine children.



LEWTS D. HEDGES (deceased) was for
several \-ears one of the leading merchants

of Pine Plains, Dutchess county. He is a na-
tive of that section, born at Jackson Corners,
town of Milan, Dutchess county, in 18 12, and
on both the paternal and maternal sides was
descended from old English families, who lo-
cated on Long Island at a very early day in the
history of this country. His grandfather, John
Hedges, was there born, and his farm on Long
Island is now owned by one of his grandsons.
He there married Jerusha Hunting, daughter of
Rev. Hunting, the first Presbyterian minister
on that island, who had seven daughters.
To Mr. and Mrs. Hed.ges were born seven chil-
dren: Mrs. Jerusha Huldred; Mrs. Lucinda
Hedges; Mrs. Harriet Hand; Stephen; John;
Josiah; and Harriet, who died unmarried.

Prior to 181 2, Josiah Hedges, the father of
our subject, removed to Dutchess county, lo-
cating in the town of Milan, w-here he engaged
in farming, and was one of the prominent and
representative men of the community. He was



united in marriage with Elizabeth Dibble,
daughter of Christopher and Eliza Dibble, and
to them were born two children: Mary, wife
of Isaac Smith, whose descendants now live at
Millbrook, Dutchess county; and Lewis D.
The father was called from this life in 1844,
and his wife died in 1851.

In the district schools of the town of Milan,
Lewis D. Hedges secured his elementary edu-
cation, and being a great reader he became a
well-informed man. In 1840 he began general
merchandising in Pine Plains, and later formed
a partnership with William Davis, which con-
nection was continued for about a j'ear. He
carried on mercantile pursuits up to the time
of his death, which occurred on January 4,
1859, and met with a well-deserved success.
His first location was where the opera house
now stands, but he later removed to the store
which is now owned by W. S. Eno. He was
one of the foremost merchants of the place, and
was highly respected by all with whom he came
in contact.

On August I, 1844, Mr. Hedges led to the
marriage altar Miss Mary Pulver, daughter of
Andrus and Margaret (Thomas) Pulver, who
were of English descent. Her paternal grand-
father, Nicholas N. Pulver, resided on a farm
east of the village of Pine Plains, and by his
marriage with Polly Parks had children :
Andrus, Nicholas, Filer, Mary, Sutherland,
Matilda, Lewis and Julia. His death occurred
in 1850, and his wife died in December, 1856.
The father of Mrs. Hedges was born in 1800,
and in later life purchased of Dr. Reynolds
what is now known as the " Stissing Hotel."
but was then called the •• Pulver's Hotel, "
which he conducted for many years. He
stood very high in the estimation of his fellow-
men, and' had the confidence of all who knew
him. In his family were three children who
grew to years of maturity: Mary; Frances
Thomas, wife of Henry Myers; and Cornelia
B. , wife of Egbert Van Wagner. The mother
of Mrs. Pulver bore the maiden name of Den-
ton, and her mother was a Peck. Mrs. Pulver
for her second husband married Henry C.
Myers. Two daughters blessed that union:
Elizabeth, wife of B. C. Rizedorf, and Mar-
garet, who married (first) Eben Husted, and
(second) William Juckett.

Three children blessed the union of Mr.
and Mrs. Hedges: Lewis M., of Chicago,
who married Catharine O. Crononin; Henry C,
who is at the head of the advertising agency of



376



COMMEAfORATTVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



Barnum's circus; and Elizabeth, wife of Isaac
Rollins, of the town of Milan, by whom she
has two children — Mary H. and Lewis H. H.
In politics, Mr. Hedges affiliated with the
Whig party, was very positive in his views, and
was greatly interested in all local political
affairs. He was public-spirited and progress-
sive, giving his support to all measures for the
benefit of the community, and was an impor-
tant factor in the upbuilding of the locality.
He was one of the reliable members of the
Presbyterian Church, and was a conscientious
Christian gentleman.



J WATSON VAIL, a prominent citizen and
leading photographer of Poughkeepsie,
Dutchess county, whose gallery is located
at Nos. 254 and 256 Main street, is a native of
Dutchess county, born May 18, 1849, on a
farm in the town of Unionvale, where the
family have lived for several generations.
They were of English origin, and the great-
grandfather of our subject, who served as a
captain during the Revolutionary war, was
born probably on the old family homestead in
Unionvale.

There the birth of Israel \'ail occurred, and
on attaining adult age he was united in mar-
riage with a Miss Hall, also a native of Dutch-
ess county, by whom he had nine children:
Hiram, who became a builder and, later, a
banker of Amenia, Dutchess county; Jarvis, a
farmer of Dutchess count)-; Isaac, who was
also an agriculturist; Edmond, the father of
our subject; Hubbard, a mason by trade; Alan-
son, who carried on farming; Mary, wife of
Alfred Van Black, a miller of Unionvale; Re-
becca, who never married; and PhcEbe, wife of
James Losee, a farmer. On the old homstead
the father of this family departed this life.

Edmond Vail, the father of our subject,
was born and reared there, and educated in
the district schools of the neighborhood. He
wedded Martha Husted, who was born in the
town of Washington, Dutchess count}', and
was a daughter of Lewis Husted, a farmer b\'
occupation and a native of Dutchess county,
his birth having occurred in the same house
where his father was born. The parents of our
subject began their domestic life upon a farm
in the town of Unionvale, but later removed
to Poughkeepsie, where the father was en-
gaged in the insurance business until his death
in 1884. In politics he was an ardent Repub-



lican. The parental household included five
children, namely: Lewis H., who is president
of the Dutchess County Insurance Co.; Her-
bert, now engaged in clerking; J. Watson, the
subject of this sketch; Alonzo H., who is in
partnership with our subject, and is also in the
insurance business; and Dr. Edwin S., a spe-
cialist, who is engaged in the practice of medi-
cine at Enfield, Connecticut.

Until he was seventeen years of age J.
Watson \'ail, whose name introduces this
record, remained upon the home farm, assist-
ing in its cultivation and attending the com-
mon schools of the locality. His first inde-
pendent effort in life was as an employe in a
carriage factor}- which he entered in 1865, and
there remained for about a year and a half.
He then took instructions in photography un-
der Isaac N. \'an \\^agner for about fifteen
months, after which he went to Fishkill, N. Y. ,
where he opened a small gallery; but at the
end of five months he returned to Poughkeep-
sie. On May*20, 1868, he opened his present
gallery, where he has since successfully en-
gaged in business.

On April 5, 1876, Mr. Vail was united in
marriage with Miss Flora H. Sterling, of
Poughkeepsie, a daughter of Junius Sterling, a
dry-goods merchant of that place. Her father
was born in Salisbury, Conn., and was the
son of William C. Sterling, who owned large
iron interests in that State, but later in life
came to Poughkeepsie, and was president of
the Fallkill National Bank. The political
support of Mr. Vail is given the Republican
party, in the success of which he takes a deep
interest. In manner he is pleasant and genial,
in disposition kindly, and is universally held in
the highest regard.



ASA B. CORBIN. The Corbin family is
well known in the town of Pawling,

Dutchess county, and its members in every
generation have given evidence of the qualities
which constitute good citizenship.

John Corbin, the father of the subject of
this sketch, was a native of that town and
passed his life there, acquiring his education in



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