Amasa J. (Amasa Junius) Parker.

Landmarks of Albany County, New York online

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campaign, and in the spring of 1864 made a forced march with the Si.xth Corps to
Madison CouVt House. He was promoted major of the Forty-third regiment and in
June, 1864, was honorably discharged. He received the " Gettysburg Medal " from
the State of New York.

He was one of the first members of the Albany Zouave Cadets (now Co. A, lOth
Battalion N. G. N. Y.) in 1861, an oiganization which had the proud record of send-
ing eighty commissioned officers to the Union army. Some years afterward he was
elected vice-president and later president of the Old Guard, an organization formed
of men and officers of the old Albany Zouave Cadets, and has ever since been one of
its leading members. He is also a member of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion
of the United States, the Society of the Army of the Potomac, and the Society of the
Sixth Army Corps, of which he was elected vice-president during the reunion at
Gettysburg. He is a charter member of George S. Dawson Post. No. 63, G. A. R.,
and was appointed ordnance officer on the stafl: of Gen. T. Ellery Lord, Third Brig-
ade, N. G. N. Y., but declined the honor. He is a member of the Sons of the Revo-
lution through his great-grandfather, Col. James Lyman. He was vice-president
and curator of the Albany Young Men's Association, a trustee of the Albany City
Homoeopathic Hospital, a trustee of the First Reformed (Old North Dutch) Church,
and secretary of the old Albany Club. Many of these positions he resigned when he
engaged in business in Cohoes. He is a member of the Fort Orange Club, a trustee
of the Albany Historical and Art Association, and has always taken an active in-
terest in the advancement and material welfare of his native city, where he has
always resided.

Major Newman was married on the 8th of October, 1872, to Miss Evelina Egberts

Steele, daughter f)f Oliver Steele, of Albany. Mrs. Newman's mother was Anna
Egberts, a daughter of Anthony Egberts, a descendant of Rip Van Dam, one of the
early colonial governors of New York ; she was a sister of Egbert Egberts, a mer-
chant of Albany and " the father of the knitting industry of the United State.s," be-
ing the inventor of the knitting machine and a wealthy manufacturer of Cohoes.
Major and Mrs. Newman have two children: Clarence Egberts Newman and Evelyn

Rev. Frederick Mayer Newman, youngest .son of Henry Newman, was born in
Albany October 31, 1.S40, was educated at the academy and Professor Anthony's
Classical Institute, and in 1860 entered Union College, from which he received the
degrees of A. B. and A. M. He wasgraduated from Princeton Theological Seminary
in l.'^67, and for two years was missionary pastoral Port Henry, Essex county, having
been licensed and ordained by the New York Presbytery. He spent a part of the
year 1871 traveling in Europe, and for four years thereafter was pastor of the First
Presbyterian church of Saratoga Springs. He is a member of Kappa Alpha Society
of Union College and the Albany Institute, a life member of the Albany Young
Men's Association, and a member of other honorary .societies. Since 1880 he has
resided in Albany, being engaged in literary pursuits.


TiiF. Slingerland family of Albany county, of which Hon. John I. Slingerland was
one of the most distinguished members, is descended from (1) Tennis Corneliuse and
Engeltie Albertsie (Bradt) Slingerland, of pure Dutch stock, who emigrated to
America from Amsterdam, Holland, in 1650. He was one of the first settlers of
Beverwyck (Albany), Kenwood, and Onisquatha (Slingerlands), where he purchased
from the three tribes of Indians represented by the signs of the Wolf, Bear, and
Turtle about 10,000 acres of land located in what are now the towns of Bethlehem
aud New Scotland. Much of this land is still owned and occupied by his posterity,
large tracts of it having always remained in the name. He was born in 1617. His
second wife, whom he married April 9, 1684, was Geertie Fonda, widow of Jan
Bicker. The line of descent from the original pioneer to the subject of this sketch
is as follows: (2) Albert, born 1666, died 1731, married Hester Becker; (3) Johannes,
of Onisquatha, born 1696, married 1724 Anne Slingerland; (4) Albert, of Onisquatha,
born 1733, died 1814. married 1760 Elizabeth Moak ; (5) John Albert, born 1768, died
1850, married Leah Brett; and (6) John I., of Slingerlands. These and others of the
family were mainly agriculturists — prosperous, substantial citizens, respected and
esteemed, and prominent in the affairs of their .several localities.

Hon. John I. Slingerland was born March 1, 1804, in New Scotland, Albany county;
when a young man he took up his residence at Slingerlands (in the town of Bethle-
hem), which place was named after the Slingerland family, and received a good com-
mon .school education. As a business man he davoted nearly his whole life to agri-
cultural pursuits, residing on the site of his birth— the old family homestead. He ac-
cumulated a handsome competency, and was universally respected and esteemed, not
honored only by those who enjoyed his acquaintance but by all who knew of him, He


was honored for his social cjuahties as well as for his Christian faith. His was an un-
usually warm heart, and his purse was always open to the wants of suffering humanity.
To the rich and poor, high and low, he was their friend, their leader — ever faithful and
conscientious in the discharge of duty, and true to the best interests of his community
and its inhabitants. No man was ever more popular among his constituents, and
probably no man in the county stood so high in public esteem and confidence. As
an illustration of his great popularity it is cited that, on one occasion, when he was
a candidate for Congress, he received every vote in one of the towns of his district.
He was honest; his word was never questioned; and even his political opponents
accorded him that confidence which unswerving honesty always merits.

Mr. Slingerland was one of the foremost politicians of his time — not in the sense
in which the word politician is now used, but along the lines of honorable leadership,
pure and unselfish in its motives, and ennobling because of its lofty aims and puWic
benefaction. In 1843 he was a member of the Assembly, and in 1860 he again rep-
resented the first assembly district of Albany county in that body. In 1847-49 he
was a member of the 30th Congress from the thirteenth Congressional district. He
served with distinction in these bodies, winning for himself lasting credit and honor,
and for his constituents a number of measures for their permanent good. In each
position he was faithful, honest, straightforward, and upright. In the trying times
of slavery agitation he never lost sight of the fundamental principle of freedom,
to which his votes and influence were ever directed, and to which he made every
other political course subordinate. Loyalty to country and home was one of his chief
characteristics. In a ringing letter of August 12, 1856, he boldly and fearlessly de-
nounced "those twin relics of barbarism, polygamy and slavery, ' and advocated the
election of John C. Fremont for President — an act which placed his name among the
founders of the Republican party. His public life was unstained, his honor unsullied;
and he exemplified those convictions bequeathed to him by an ancestry who poured
out their blood in the cause of liberty and conscience.

Locally Mr. Slingerland was ever active in advancing public interests. He was
one of the principal founders of the village of Slingerlands, named after his family,
and was chiefly instrumental in securing the post-office and other institutions. But
his greatest effort in this respect, and one that overreached all others in its subse-
quent benefits, was the Susquehanna division of the D. & H. railroad, which he,
more than any other man, secured for the place. He zealously labored for the con-
struction of this line along its present route, locally and in the State Legislature,
by having bills passed, appropriations, &c. ; and to him is due the chief honor of
successfully attaining the desired ends. He died, where he had always lived, on the
36th of October. 1861.

Mr. Slingerland was twice married. His first wife was Elizabeth Van Derzee, who
bore him three children; John, deceased; Harmon Van D., of South Bethlehem;
and Miss Maria of Albany. By his second wife. Sally Hall, he had Elizabeth (Mrs.
Adrian Safford), of Albany, and William, of Slingerlands. John Slingerland, a
farmer on a part of the old homestead, was a prominent Republican, a good public
speaker, and a highly respected citizen. He married Betsey, daughter of Joel Wicker
Andrews, a manufacturer who made the steam apparatus which ran in Charles R.
Van Benthuysen's printing-office in Albany the first steam printing press in America.
She was a descendant of Lieut. Robert Andrews, an officer in the Revolutionary

A. B. \ AN LUUN, M. U.


war, and of Jdliii and Maiy Andrews, who came from Ipswich, England, to Farm-
ington. Conn., in 1(U(». They had three children: Cora E. (Mrs. CUnton Cook), of
New Scotland; Cornehus H., of Slingerlands; and John I., who died young.

Cornelius H. Slingerland, born in Slingerlands, April 23. 1861, received a private
school education, and when seventeen began learning the printer's trade with George
Wilkinson in Albany. Two years later he established his present printing-office in
Slingerlands, where he has successfully built up, from a modest beginning, a pros-
perous general commercial printing business. He is a Republican, and a member
of Masters Lodge, No. 5, F. & A. M., of Albany, and of the Sons of the Revolution.
In April, 1883, he was married to Miss Nellie B. Mattice, of Slingerlands, a
lineal descendant of one of the members of the Boston tea party. They have one
daughter, Mary.


1)K. Arthur B. Van Luos. eldest son of William H. and Caroline M. (Stark) Van
Loon, was born in Albany, December 23, 1868, and is of Holland Dutch descent.
His father, a native of Troy, N. Y., has been for several years an active citizen of
■ Albany. His mother was descended from General Stark of Revolutionary fame. Dr.
Van Loon was graduated from the Albany High School in 1888, read medicine with
Dr. W. E. Milbank, and was graduated from the Albany Medical College in 1891,
delivering the class oration. He was graduated from the New York Homeopathic
Medical College in 1892 and for one year was interne in Ward's Island Hospital.
While in New York he took a special course in the Carnegie Laboratory (connected
with Bellevue College), and in 1893 began the active practice of his profession in
Albany ; since then has made gynecology a speciality. He is a member of the surg-
ical staff of the Albany Homeopathic Hospital, a member of the Albany County
Homeopathic Medical Society, the New York State Homeopathic Medical Society
and the American Institute of Homeopathy. April 11, 1895, he married Caroline S.,
daughter of the late John Phillips, of Albany.

M. J. ZEH, M. D.

MivKi.iN J. Zeh, M. D.. a physician of Watervliet, N. Y., who, though a young man,
has become eminently successful in his profession. He was born in the town of
Knox, Albany county, August 2, 1867. He is the son of the late Elias Zeh, a prom-
inent farmer of Knox. His mother was Annie E. Osterhout of the well known
pioneer family, named elsewhere in this work.

Dr. Zeh received his preliminary education at the Knox Academy, after which he
taught school for a short time. He next read homeopathy with Dr. Tuck, a success-
ful practioner of Berne, N. Y. In 1885 he studied pharmacy and eclecticism with
Dr. Archie Cullen, late of West Troy, passing the State Board of Pharmacy Feb-
ruary, 1887.


In 1886 he read medicine under the supervision of Dr. Shiland of West Troy, and
the late Dr. John Swinburn of Albany, and entered the Albany Medical College,
where he pursued a full course, graduating March 21, 1889.

The following month he began practice in West Troy, where he is held in high

In 1890 he married Miss Charlotte B. Cullen, a sister of Dr. Archie Cullen. He
has one son, Arthur P., and a daughter, Florence J. Dr. Zeh is a member of the
following societies : New York State Medical Association, the Medical Association
of Troy and Vicinity, the Rensselaer County Medical Society, the I. O. O. F., the
Wyoma Council Royal Arcanum, the Troy Yacht Club, Olympian Senate, Knights
of the Ancient Essenic Order, associate member of the Walter A. Jones Post, G. A.
R., and is a thirty-second degree Mason. He has held the office of city physician for
the past three years.


The late Isaac W. Vosburgh, of Albany, was a lineal descendant of Abram
Pieterse Vosburgh, who came from Holland and settled at Beverwyck (now Albany)
in 1653. With this original ancestor came three brothers, who located in Kinder-
hook, Claverack, and the Mohawk Valley respectively. Abram P. married Gertruy
Pieterse Koeymans, or Coeymans, and had a son Isaac, who married Anna Janse
Goes in 1686. Abraham, son of Isaac, married Geertje Van Den Berg in 1719, and
their son Isaac, born 1720, died 1785, married, in 1759, Catherine Staats Dort. Their
son, William Vosburgh, born 1772, died 1839, was a contractor, and in 1799 married
Mary McDonald. Mr. Vosburgh was therefore descended from one of the oldest
Holland Dutch families of Albany, and from his ancestors inherited a liberal meas-
ure of their thrifi; and noted characteristics.

Isaac W. Vosburgh was born where his ancestors had lived for four generations,
in Albany, on the 21st of December, 1801, his parents being William Vosburgh and
Mary McDonald. He received a common and private school education, and on
February 3, 1828, became a clerk in the hardware store of George Humphrey, who
in 1825 was succeeded by the firm of Humphrey & Co. Mr. Vosburgh remained
with this concern for si.\ years. On January 1, 1829, he formed a partnership with
Lansing Pruyn and Abram F. Wilson and purchased the hardware business then
conducted by John Pruyn and located where the post-office building now stands.
The firm of Pruyn, Wilson & Vosburgh conducted a successful trade until 1842, when
Mr. Wilson retired and the name was changed to Pruyn, Vosburgh & Co. This co-
partnership continued business until 1860, when Mr. Vosburgh retired permanently
from active life, being at that time one of the oldest hardware merchants in Albany.
The last store occupied by his firm was the east half of the store now owned by the
Albany Hardware and Iron Company on State street.

Mr. Vosburgh, during a long and active career, was uniformly successful, and re-
tained the confidence and respect of all who knew him. He took a deep interest in
the welfare of his native city, was prominently connected with several charitable
and commercial institutions, and gave liberally of both time and means for the ad-

vancement of public interests. He was one of the founders of the Dudley Ob-
servatory and served as treasurer from its inception until about 1883. when he re-
signed on account of ill-health. He was also one of the originators of the Albany
Rural Cemetery, was a trustee from its organization until his death, and was for
many years chairman -of its executive committee. He was long a trustee of the
Mechanics' and Farmers' Savings Bank and of the Second Presbyterian church. In
politics he was first a 'Whig and afterward a Republican, but never sought nor ac-
cepted public office. During the war of the Rebellion he staunchly supported the
Union, and although at that time he was beyond the age limit and could not have
been drafted, he nevertheless recruited and equipped and sent a substitute for each
member of his family, who served with honor in the nation's cause. Mr. 'Vosburgh
died in Albany, September 29, 1888.

He was married in 1841 to Miss Sarah Jane, daughter of 'VViley Fletcher, of Al-
bany, a descendant of "William Fletcher, who came from Yorkshire, England, to
Concord, Mass., in 1630. She was born in 1818 and survives him. Their children
were Mrs. William Irwin and Mrs. Caldwell R. Blakeman, of New York city; Mary
McD. and Miles 'Woodward "Vosburgh, of Albany; Fletcher 'Vosburgh, who died
July 30, 1895, at the age of thirty-nine; and two who died young. Miles W. is a
general shipping agent in Albany, conducting the business estabhshed by the late
'^Mlliam McElroy in 1840.


S.VMiEL Baldwin "W.^ku, M. D., son of Lebbeus Baldwin and Abby Dwight (Par-
tridge) Ward, was born in the city of New York on June 8. 1842, and is of English
descent. His greatgrandfather, Samuel Ward, born August 27, 1724, moved from
Virginia to Morristown, N. J., where he married Mary Shipman, and where he died
April 15, 1799. Silas Ward, son of Samuel, was born in Morris county, N. J., in
1767, and died in 1862. He married Phoebe Dod of a New Jersey family distin-
guished for its literary and scientific attainments. Lebbeus Baldwin Ward, their
son, was born April 7, 1801, and died in New York city June 15, 1885. He was a
man of practical education, of studious habits, of trustworthy judgment and of
great mechanical ability. He erected the Hammersley Forge in New York and
won a wide reputation as a builder of engines, and later as a manufacturer of heavy
wrought iron forgings. He was an early commissioner of the metropolitan board of
police, a member of the State assembly in 1851, and a member of various commis-
sions appointed by the municipality of New 'V'ork to construct important city works.
With his brothers John D. and Samuel S. he also built the first steamboat and the
first railroad ever operated in Canada, the firm doing business in Montreal from
about 1820 to 1838. Lebbeus Baldwin Ward married Abby Dwight Partridge, who was
born in Hatfield, Mass., the daughter of a noted clergyman, and whose ancestors
were descended from the best Puritan Pilgrim stock.

Doctor Ward received his earlier education in private schools. When fifteen he
entered the freshman class of Columbia College, and after a four years' course was
graduated from that institution in 1861 with third honors. He then entered the


office of that celebrated physician, Dr. Willard Parker, a close friend of the family,
and in 1801 and 1S(>3 attended a course of lectures at the College of Physicians and
Surgeons. But his patriotism led him to temporarily abandon student life and en-
list in the war for the Union, where he united service with professional interest. In
1862 he became a medical cadet, U. S. A., and the Medical Department of George-
town University in 1864 conferred upon him the degree of M. D. The two years
thus spent afforded him a wide practical experience in army hospitals around Wash-
ington, and enabled him to reap that reward which comes from faithfulness to duty
and skill in practice. In 1863 he became Acting Assistant Surgeon. U. S. A., and
soon after his graduation was commissioned by President Lincoln an Assistant Sur-
geon of U. .S. Volunteers. In the autumn of 1865 he returned to New York and in
October embarked for Europe, where for twelve months he studied medicine and
surgery in some of the largest hospitals of the Old World. Returning at the end of
this period to his native city he engaged in the active practice of his profession, and
was soon chosen professor of surgery in the Woman's Medical College of the New
York Infirmary. He also became attending surgeon of the Northern Dispensary,
consulting surgeon of the Western Dispensary for Women and Children, visiting
surgeon to the Presbyterian Hospital, and in 1873 Assistant Surgeon with the rank
of captain of the 7th Regiment, N. G. S. N. Y.

In May, 1876, Doctor M'ard removed to Albany, where he has since resided, and
where he has won the highest reputation as a physician and surgeon and universal
esteem as a citizen. Soon after his arrival he was chosen professor of surgical
pathology and operative surgery in the Albany Medical College, and later professor
of the theory and practice of medicine in the same institution, which position he still
holds. He also became attending surgeon to the Albany and St. Peter's Hospitals.
He is a member of the Association of American Physicians; a member of the Albany
County Medical Society; a permanent member and ex -president of the New York
State Medical Society ; secretary and treasurer of the executive committee of the
State Normal College ; a trustee and vice-president of the Dudley Observatory ; a
a trustee of the Albany Female Academy ; ex-president of the State board of .survey ;
one of the civil service examiners for State medical officials ; president of the Fort
Orange Club; member and ex-president of the Albany Camera Club, and a member
of the American Climatolcgical Association. He was also for some time a member
of the Albany board of health, and is connected with several other scientific and
social organizations, including the Northwest Medical and Surgical .Society, of which
he was secretary in 1874-76. He is now attending physician to the Albany City
Hospital and consulting phj'sician to St. Peter's Hospital and the Albany Orphan
Asylum. In 1864 he received the degree of A. M. in course from Columbia College
and in 1882 that of Ph. D. ex-honore from Union University.

Doctor Ward has contributed a number of articles on medicine and surgery to
the leading medical journals of the country, and is an authority on many .subjects
akin to his profession. In 1879 he first visited the Adirondack region, and ever since
then he has been enthusiastic in the development of the sanitary advantages of that
vast wilderness. His investments in the Saranac Lake country have been consider-
able, and as both a citizen and an officer he has addressed himself to the work of
forest preservation.

In 1871 Doctor Ward was married to Miss Nina A., the accomplished daughter of
William A. Wheeler of New York city, who died in October, 1883, leaving three


James C. Covert, proprietor of the Covert Manufacturing Company of West Troy,
N. Y., was born in Seneca county, N. Y., in 1835. After receiving a substantial ed-
ucation in the public schools, he devoted his attention to the harness trade and be-
came a thorough practical harnessmaker and manufacturer. For a number of years
he was in business in his native town after which he went South, traveling through
the different Southern States, with headquarters at Nashville, Tenn., where he re-
mained several years, until just before the Rebellion, when he returned North and
established himself in business in Seneca county. Mr. Covert is possessed of great
inventive genius, having taken out over fifty patents on his different inventions and
not only has he patented valuable inventions, but has, unlike most inv^entors, per-
.sonally manufactured, introduced and established a large and lucrative business on
his articles. In 1868 he patented his famous bolt harness snap, which revolutionized
the snap trade throughout the United States and to-day these snaps are standard
throughout the world, and they have been largely imitated. In 1873 the Covert
Manufacturing Company was formed in Troy, N. Y., and in 1879 the business was
removed to West Troy, Albany county, where the company erected a large estab-
lishment adapted particularly to the manufacture of their goods and to which plant
there has since been many large and substantial additions. The business was com-
menced upon a comparatively small scale, but their goods are now recognized as
l)eing standard and are shipped to every civilized country in the world. Their goods
consist of Covert's celebrated harness snaps, swivel snaps, open-eye bit, chain and
trace snaps, snaps and thimbles for horse and cattle ties, abjustable web and rope
halters, and rope goods, consisting of rope halters, horse and cattle ties, halter leads,
weight and hitching cords, hammock ropes, lariat tethers, picket pins, and also ad-
justable soldering irons, rod post hitchers and chain goods consisting of breast,
halter, rein, post, trace and heel chains, hitching posts, balling irons, safety gate
hooks, pant stretchers, wagon jacks, etc.

Mr. Covert is also the owner and manufacturer of the famous Dr. Bury Medicines,
being the sole proprietor of the Dr. Bury Medical Company of West Troy, N. Y.
These medicines consist of lung balsam, catarrh snuff and camphor ointment.
These remedies were invented by an eminent French physician who used them^ex-
tensively and successfully in his practice, both in France and the United States.

Online LibraryAmasa J. (Amasa Junius) ParkerLandmarks of Albany County, New York → online text (page 59 of 138)