Benjamin Whitman.

Nelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r online

. (page 162 of 192)
Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r → online text (page 162 of 192)
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made for any purpose except to handle the ax, the

spade and the scythe. But he was often at his uncle's
(Dr. Jason Moore), and from his conversation he early
imbibed a taste for the study of medicine. Also, when

18, he became a pronounced Christian, and his gifts
and zeal brought him prominently before the public,
and everyone said he was destined for the pulpit.
But he finished learning his trade, married Mary,
daughter of Simeon Sheldon, whose wife, the daugh-
ter of Judge Elias Harmon, was the first white child
born in Mantua, Portage county. This wife died
August 10, 1847, leaving a son — Sheldon M. At the
early age of 16 he entered the army, in 1861, as a pri-
vate in the 111th P. V. I., and after seeing much
service under McClellan, in Virginia; in Tennessee,
under Hooker, and marching to the sea under Sher-
man, he was put into the veteran corps and mustered
out of service late in 1865. For the past fifteen years
he has been engineer of the P. & E. R. R., and is re-
garded as one of the boldest and most careful engi-
neers on the road. (See sketch). It was soon after
the death of his first wife that Dr. M. M. Moore re-
turned to his first love, the study of medicine, and
married Miss Mary, daughter of Wait Bassett, of Con-
necticut. Mary, wife of John Chambers (deceased), of
Bradford; Lucretia (deceased), and Emery, a train
dispatcher on the N. & E. R. R., were the issue of
this marriage. The second Mrs. Moore died May 26,
1864, and he was subsequently married to Julia A., the
daughter of Chauncey Wood, a native of Vermont,
and for many years a resident of Garrettsville, Ohio,
where he died in 1865. She died suddenly November

19, 1883, and M. M. was left alone and in sorrow, with
not much of life remaining but his wonted courage
and fortitude. Dr. Moore is richly endowed with all
the elements that qualify a man for public life; no-
where more than in the sick room is he at home;
there his presence, his words of good cheer, his sym-
pathetic bearing, inspire confidence and hope. Be-
tween himself and the families he visits, there gener-
ally exists the ties of the strongest friendship. As a
practitioner he has been very successful. His library
of medical works, pamphlets and periodicals, is large
and richly furnished. As much as ever in life he con-
tinues a hard and unremittent study, and whatever he
learns from reading or from his practice, his strong
memory retains. Some thirty-five years ago he be-
came a resident of Wesleyville, and has ever taken a
lively interest in all that would promote its welfare.
He acted for many years as postmaster (his daughter,
Mary, doing the business) and school director, and in
no capacity has he failed in the discharge of duty.
He has never had a law suit, and, as a physician, has
never failed in his attentions to the poor and friend-
less. Though thrice married, he was either skillful in
his selection of a wife, or fortunate, for all were excel-
lent women. Dr. M. M. Moore married Mrs. L. A.
Burnham (nee Rathburn), of Erie, September 17,
1890. His brother, Hiram, who resides in Kansas, is
a member of Congress, and was elected in 1894.

N. A. Farasworth, of the firm of Chaffee &
Farnsworth, grocers, Wesleyville, Pa., was born in
State Line, Pa., May 24, 1867, and is a son of Orin O.
and Sarah (Ackles) Farnsworth. They now reside on
a farm in Northville, North East township. The for-
mer was born in 1815, in the village of Greenfield, and
is a son of John and Sarah (Whitney) Farnsworth,
natives of New York, and who came to Erie county in



1814, settling in Greenfieli township, where the>[ died
in 1834 and 1858 respectively. Orin C. was married in
1846 to Sarah, daughter of William and Mary P.
(Brown) Ackles, natives of the North of Ireland. To
this union were born: Mary, wife of George Taylor;
Sarah A., wife of Eugene Dudley; Emma, at home;
Carrie, N. A. and George. Mr. N. A. Farnsworth was
reared in North East township, and educated in the
public schools and at Clark's Business College, in Erie,
Pa. January 1, 1891, he and Mr. Palmer bought Mr.
Chaffee out at State Line, and commenced business
under the firm name of H. \V. Palmer & Co. At the
end of three years he sold his interest there and en-
tered the present partnership. Mr. Farnsworth was
married April 4, 1894, to Miss Etta Ackles, of Rip-
ley, N. Y.

W. E. Chaffee, of the firm of Chaffee & Farns-
worth, grocers and dealers in farming implements, bug-
gies, etc., Wesleyville, Pa., was born in Tionesta, For-
est county, Pa., November 7, 1859, and is a son of
H. C. and Catherine (Jameson) Chaffee, the former a
native of Pennsylvania, and the latter of Scotland.
The father was a member of the 2d Reg., 2d Heavy
Artillery of Pennsylvania, and was killed in the service,
his wife having died previously. W. E. was the only
child. When 5 years old he came to State Line,
Pa., and spent his early days in North East town-
ship, except three years he spent in Titusville, Pa., at
the Soldiers' Orphan School. He then worked at
farming a short time. He clerked at State Line one
year and a half, when he purchased a g-eneral store,
which he ran eight years. In March, 1892, he came
to Wesleyville and bought the store of W. H. Kelley,
and entered the present partnership one year later.
He received the appointment as postmaster August
21, 1893. Mr. Chaffee is a member of the E. A. U. and
the Improved Order of Red Men.

James Chambers, retired farmer and justice of
the peace, Wesleyville, Harbor Creek township, Erie
county, Pa., was born in Mill Creek township, March
10, 1805, son of Ezekiel and Rebecca (Stewart) Cham-
bers. They were natives of Chambersburg, Franklin
county. Pa., which was named after an ancestor. They
"%ad twelve children, three living, viz.: Lydia R., wife
of J. Backus; Maria J., wife of Mr. Walker, of Erie,
and James. Mr. and Mrs. Chambers came to Erie
county in the fall of 1804, and were among its earliest
settlers. They lived in Mill Creek township until ar-
rangements were completed for moving to the farm
now occupied by James. Ezekiel Chambers and a
brother obtained 400 acres from the Population Com-
pany. James Chambers was reared in Erie county
and educated in the county schools and Erie Acad-
emy, and when about 19 years of age, commenced
teaching school, and taught about twelve terms in
Harbor Creek and Mill Creek townships, teaching
winters and working summers. His salary ranged
from SlO to §17 per month, and he boarded around.
At his father's death the farm was divided equally
among the heirs, and James bought the shares of two
of his sisters, which, added to his own, made a very
handsome place, where he still resides. March 19,
1828, he married Adelia, daughter of Thomas George,
of Troy, N. Y. Five children blessed this union, three
living: James H., a merchant of Wesleyville, married
Miss Brawley; R. O., on the old homestead; he mar-

ried Miss Clara M. Funson, of Syracuse, N. Y.; they
have two children, Warren H. and Adelia G.; and
Mrs. James C. Russell, a widow, resides at Belle Val-
ley. Mrs. James Chambers died in 1881. Mr. Cham-
bers is a well-to-do citizen, living on the old home-
stead, near Wesleyville. He has been one of the
county's leading citizens, and has filled nearly every
office in Erie county and Harbor Creek township. He
is now justice of the peace, which position he has oc-
cupied for fifty years, and is the oldest justice in the
county, obtaining his commission from Gov. Ritner,
under the old court.

Frank H. Ore. agent on the N. Y., C. & St. L.

R. R., at Mooreheads, Harbor Creek postotfice, Pa.,
was born in Edinboro, December 13, 1864, and is a son
of William and Nancy Jane (Stancliff) Ore, now
residents of Erie. The father was born at Bodman,
near London, England, and is a son of Benjamin and
Anne Ore, who emigrated to America with their chil-
dren, and settled in Waterford, Pa. Of their family
four children are living, viz.: Joseph, North East;
Hannah, Mrs. H. H. Ferguson, Pittsburg; Rebecca,
Mrs. Charles Comer, Erie, and Benjamin, J., of Erie.
William Ore followed farming in Washington town-
ship until 1884, when he went to Conneaut, Ohio, and
was in the restaurant business eighteen months, when
he came to Erie, where he has since resided, and is at
present engaged in collecting. During the war he
served in the 18th Pa. Cav. William and Nancy Jane
(Stancliff) Ore, are the parents of three children, viz.:
Emma, married J. J. Flury, Erie; Fred R., mail car-
rier, Erie, and Frank H. Frank H. was educated in
the North East High School, and graduated in the
class of 1882. He then entered the Nickel Plate
telegraph office, at Harbor Creek, and learned teleg-
raphy, under the instruction of T. A. Elliott. Since
then he has been employed in various offices on that
road, between Cleveland and Buffalo, and in Febru-
ary, 1890, was promoted to the agency at Mooreheads.
He was married January 5, 1886, to Miss Georgiana,
daughter of C. C. Hyke, of Harbor Creek. They
have three children, viz.: Leigh Emerson, Hattie Jane
and Helen Elizabeth. Mr. Ore is a member of the A.
O. U. W., Knights of St. John, Jr. O. U. A. M., O. R.
T., State Police, and is a Republican.

J. P. Giff ord , farmer. Harbor Creek, Pa., was born
in North East township, June 10, 1845. He is a son
of E. F. and Betsey (Loveless) Gifford. The former
was born in Vermont, March 4, 1797, and was a son
of Gifford, who served eight years in the Revolution-
ary war; tfie latter was a native of New York State,
and was born Septembers, 1800. In the family were
eleven children, viz.: William Henry (deceased), born
Novembers, 1821; Sarah J. (deceased), born January
11, 1823; George W., born December 10, 1825, resides
in Cass county, Missouri; E. Smith, born February 22,
1828, died in November, 1866, in Oregon. He lost his
health while working on the railroad across the
Isthmus of Panama; Elmira B., born March 22, 1830,
died April 3, 1832; Daniel F., born June 28, 1832, re-
sides in Florida; Andrew, born February 10, 18*5,
died April 8, 1836; Betsey A., born May 22, 1837, died
in Missouri, April 8, 1870; she married R. B. Cham-
bers; A. J., born May 13, 1840, resides at Miller, Hand
county. South Dakota, and J. P. E. F. Gifford, the
father of J. P., came to Erie county about 1830, and


settled on a farm about a mile north of the Union
school house, North East township. He was a black-
smith when a young man, and later followed farming
and carpentering. He died January 8, 1867, and his
wife died June 11, 1891. J. P. was reared in North
East township, and educated in the public schools.
Has always followed farming, and engaged in farming
for himself in North East. In 1879 he came to Har-
bor Creek, and settled on his present place. He has
seventy-six acres of land, twelve acres of which is a
fine vineyard. He was married January 10, 1871, to
Miss Ellen L., daughter of Philo and Betsey Green,
early settlers in Erie county. To this union were born
six children, viz.: E. P., born December 15, 1872;
Charles A., born November 22, 1874; J. R., born March
14, 1878; George H., born August 7, 1880; Arthur W.,
born April 22, 1885, and Albert, born December 27,
1886. Mr. Gifford is a member of the A. O. U. W., E.
A. U., Jr. O. U. A. M., the Grange, and politically is a

Carl H. Walbridge, owner and proprietor of the
Jersey Meadow Stock Farm, Harbor Creek township,
postoffice address 9 West Eighth street, Erie, Pa. The
Walbridge family, of whom Carl H. Walbridge is a
descendant, is one of the oldest families in the United
States. The town records of Preston, Conn., show
that Henry Walbridge was married December 25,
1688, to Anna Ames, of that place. Tradition says
that Henry was a seventh son, that he and his bro'her,
William, were from Devonshire, England, that in
1685 they took part in the Monmouth rebellion against
King James II, and on its failure, fled to this country.
The above-named Henry is the ancestor of Carl H.
Walbridge, and of the several members of this numer-
ous family, now scattered throughout every State in
the Union. Mr. W. G. Walbridge, of Litchfield,
Conn., who has been engaged in compiling a gene-
alogy of the Walbridge family since 1883, has ascer-
tained the records of thirty-three Walbridges, who
fought for Uncle Sam in the Rebellion, and of twenty-
five more who were in the Revolution and war of 1812.
Col. Ebenezer Walbridge, the great-grandfather of
Carl, was an active participant in the dawn of the
Revolution, at Lexington. He married Elizabeth
Stebbins in 1760. They were the parents of Sella W.,
who married Betsey Preston. He was born March 8,
1790, and died April 7, 1859. They were both natives
of Sharon, Vt., where they reared a family of six
children, viz.: Henry, born June 20, 1818, died May 3,
1887; John S., born September 24, 1815, died May 3,
1859; Marcia, born October 18, 1818, now the widow of
Perry Devore, late of Springfield, Erie county. Pa.;
Lucia, born February 10, 1821, married Lorenzo Har-
vey, died July 22, 1892; Amelia, born January 15, 1828,
now Mrs. Asa Devore, of Michigan; Janet, born April
25, 1825, married Perry M. Brindle, of Springfield, Pa.,
died May 11, 1887; John S. Walbridge, the father of C.
H., came to Erie county in 1829, and settled on a farm
in Springfield township, where he resided until the
time of his death, as stated above. He married Jane
C. Mallory, who was a native of Argyle, N. Y., and
was born August 15, 1818. She died January 22, 1872.
They were the parents of eight children, viz.: Emma
J., born November 30, 1840, married Jacob W. Moore,
of Pawnee City, Neb., December 2G, 1864; Charles P.,
born August 25, 1842, was married December 17, 1866,
to Mary Anne Paterson, of Beattie, Kan.; Florence H.,

born May 12, 1844, was married February 25, 1869, to
Lemuel D. Jordan. They now reside at Pawnee City,
Neb.; Carl H., born May 1, 1846 (who afterward
changed his name from Henry C. to Carl H., not so
much from choice as to avoid confusion, there being
over forty Henry Walbridges, whose names appear in
the Walbridge family genealogy); Andrew M., born
March 29, 1848, was married November 30, 1871, to
Miss Kate O. Strickland, of Springfield, Pa., where he
now resides; Ann Eliza, born September 3, 1850, was
married November 16, 1871, to Delos Morgan, of
Beattie, Kan., she died April 2, 1895; Frank D., born
June 11, 1854, locomotive engineer, Erie, Pa.; Ida
Marcia, born August 25, 1858, was married July 18,
1878, to C. F. Church, of Erie, Pa. Carl H. Walbridge
was reared in Springfield, Pa., the town of his birth,
and educated in the public schools and the State
Normal school, of Edinboro, Pa. When 10 years of
age he left home and went to live with his uncle.
Perry Devore, of Springfield, where he remained
until he was about 15 years of age. He then enlisted
in the United States navy, on board the U. S. S.
" Michigan," at Erie, Pa., and shortly after was sent to
Cairo, 111., and subsequently served aboard the Gov-
ernment ships " Clara," " Dolsen," " Memoria," " Brill-
iant," "St. Clair" and "Cincinnati." He served in
the capacity of a doctor's steward, and the doctor
under whom he served, resigned on account of ill
health, and our sailor boy's resignation followed
shortly thereafter. He returned to Springfield and
lived with Judge William Cross one winter, attending
school at the Springfield Academy. He then went to
the oil regions, locating in Titusville, Pa., where he
remained a short time. He enlisted March 31, 1864,
in Co. E, 146th P. V. I., was transferred to Co. F, 53d
P. V. I. (date unknown) (Bates' History of P. V. I.,
Vol. 4, page 537). He participated in the Wilderness
campaign, was at Cold Harbor, James River, and the
assault on Petersburg, \' a. It was at this last men-
tioned place that the brilliant military record which
he was making for himself came to such a sudden and
honorable halt. On June 16, 1864, in a charge on the
enemies' works, a death-dealing messenger, in the'
form of a shell from a Confederate gun, exploded in
the Union ranks, resulting in the death of three of his
comrades, and he lay upon the field with his left leg so
badly mangled that amputation necessarily followed.
After the surgical operation was performed he was
taken to Army Square Hospital, Washington, D. C,
where he was one year, lacking eight days, in recover-
ing. He received his discharge June 8, 1865, and
returned to Springfield, where he remained a short
time, and then he went to Edinboro and attended the
State Normal school for two years. He then served
as private secretary for Hon. M. B. Lowry, State
Senator, for about six months, when he entered the
employ of the Pennsylvania R. R. Company, at Erie,
as superintendent's clerk and assistant paymaster. In
1875, after being in the employ of the Pennsylvania
R. R. Company about eight years, he engaged in the
lumber business for himself in Erie, and operated
an extensive lumber vard and planing-mill at 320
State street until 1884. He then went to Cape Charles,
Va., to take charge of the extensive estate and truck
farm of the late Hon. W. L. Scott. Mr. Walbridge
here founded the town of Cape Charles, Va., and was
its first mayor. The farm which Mr. Walbridge con-
ducted was the largest truck farm in the United



States at the time. It was composed of five planta-
tions, containing 2,800 acres, and known as the " Holly-
wood Place." The best idea of the business interests
which Mr. Walbridge managed can be obtained from
the statement of shipments, which shows that in 1888
he shipped 63,485 barrels of produce, amounting to
$81,236.40, gross. The largest number of hands em-
ployed any one day was 543. He also had charge of
large oyster beds, shipping about 100,000 bushels of
oysters per season. He also, at the same time, con-
ducted an extensive ice business. In October, 1888,
he resigned and returned to Erie county, and the fol-
lowing spring took up his residence on his farm in
Harbor Creek township, which is known as the
Jersey Meadow Stock Farm. It is situated in a very
desirable locality, on the L. S. & M. S. and N. Y., C. &
St. L. R. R. lines, about four miles east of Erie. The
farm contains about 125 acres. Mr. Walbridge makes
a specialty of raising registered Jersey cattle. He was
united in marriage May 28, 1885, at Wilmington, Del.,
to Miss Dettie Dedrick, a native of Rochester, N. Y.
Mr. Walbridge is a member of the Knights of Honor,
the Royal Arcanum, the A. O. U. W., and politically
is a Democrat. He is one of the most progressive
citizens of Erie county, and his record, both civil and
military, is one which is rarely excelled.

A. B. Hume, farmer, Wesleyville, Pa., was born in
Woodcock, Crawford county, Pa., August 1, 1821, and
is a son of James and Elizabeth (McCamet) Hume, the
former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of the
North of Ireland. James Hume served in the war of
1812. He was a miller and farmer, and spent most of
his life in Crawford county. He died in 1852 and his
wife died about twenty years later. They reared a
family of nine children, viz.: Mary (deceased) Mar-
garet (deceased), Robert (deceased), Sarah (deceased),
Fanny, married to Robert Tate (deceased), John, (de-
ceased), Eliza, Mrs. Sterrett, resides in Venango,
Crawford county. Pa.; James (deceased), William (de-
ceased), A. B. and George W. resided at Woodcock,
Crawford county. Pa. A. B. Hume was reared and
educated in Crawford county. In March, 1855, he
went west and remained one year. Upon his return
from the west he settled in Greene township, Erie
county, Pa., where he remained for nine years. In
1865 he bought his present farm of fifty acres. Mr.
Hume was married May 23, 1844, to Miss Jena, daugh-
ter of Charles and Sarah Anne (Seeley) Loop, of Per-
rington, Genesee county, N. Y. Mrs. Hume's parents
moved to Crawford county in 1828, when she was 2
years old. Her father was a native of Delaware county.
New York, and her mother of Stratford, Conn. The
former died in 1843 and the latter in 1847. Mr. and
Mrs. Hume are the parents of six children, viz.; Oliver,
conductor on railroad, resides in Fargo, N. D.; Agnes,
married N. H. Hart, Terre Haute, Ind.; Sophia, mar-
ried O. C. Porter, Maringo, 111.; James, Hinkley, Minn.;
Andrew, Chicago; and Peter, Erie, Pa. Mr. Hume is
one of the most respected citizens of Erie county, and
politically every member of the family is a thorough

P. B. Raeder, farmer. Harbor Creek township,
postoffice Wesleyville, Pa., one of the foremost and
enterprising farmers of Erie county, is a German by
birth and was born in Bavaria, October 26, 1840. His
parents were Jacob and Charlotte (Bolantler) Raeder.

They reared a family of six children, viz.: John, re-
sides in Holland; Margaret, Erie, Pa.; Lena, Mrs.
George Carrell; Jacob, died in Bowling Green, Ky.,
a soldier in the Federal army; P. B., Philomena, Mrs.
Henry Shade, Erie, Pa. The mother died when P. B.
was about 3 years old, and in 1852 the father emigrated
to America with the family and settled in Erie. He
was a farmer by occupation and died in 1889, in
Harbor Creek. Mr. Raeder purchased his farm of
over 225 acres of exceptionally fertile land in 1888. It
was formerly the Reece place, and is located in a very
desirable spot, about a mile and a half southeast of
Wesleyville. From the southern elevation of his
farm can be had an excellent view of Presque Isle
Bay and the city of Erie. Mr. Raeder rented the farm
from Mrs. William A. Brown for twelve years before
he purchased it. He was married April 19, 1866, to
Miss Christain Schwingel, at that time a resident of
Erie, but a n.iiivu ,)! Buffalo, X. Y. Thev have four
children, viz.: Louisa, Mrs. William A. Frazer, Hnr-
bor Creek; Carl, George and William, all with their
father on the farm.

D. W. Sewell, farmer, postoffice Wesleyville, Pa.,
was born in Harbor Creek township, within two miles
of his present home, on November 25, 1841. He is a
son of Norton and Mary Ann (Hinton) Sewell. Nor-
ton Sewell was a son of Ebenzer Sewell, who came
from Williamstown, N. Y., in 1816, and settled in Har-
bor Creek township on a farm now owned by William
Cooper. He afterward moved, and settled one mile
west of there, on the place now occupied by Albert
Sewell. He was a native of Vermont and of English
and Irish descent. He served in the war of 1812. He
was a cooper by trade, also worked at shoemaking and
taught school. Was married to Louanna Orton, a na-
tive of New England. They reared a family of seven
children, viz.: Betsey, married Francis Plum, of Will-
iamstown, N. Y.; Norton (our subject's father); Phila,
married Benjamin Chambers, Harbor Creek; Sidney,
Harbor Creek; Miranda, married Samuel Baker, of
Cleveland, O.; Malvira, married David Riblet, Har-
bor Creek; and Robert, who lived where Albert Sew-
ell now resides; all deceased. The father died in
1869, at the age of 90, his wife dying several years pre-
vious to his death. Norton Sewell was born in 1810,
in Williamstown, N. Y'., and came to Harbor Creek
with his parents when 6 years of age. He followed
farming, also worked on the harbor in Erie. He mar-
ried Mary Ann Hinton, a native of Greene township,
and of Welsh descent. They reared a family of seven
children: Harrison (deceased), lived in Erie; D. W.,
Ellen (deceased), Melvira (deceased), and George, re-
sides in Greene township. The father died Novem-
ber 11, 1864, and the mother now resides in Harbor
Creek. D. W. Sewell was reared and educated in
Harbor Creek township, and worked on his father's
farm until August, 1861, when he enlisted in Co. M,
1st N. Y. Lt. Art., and served under Gen. Sherman.
He participated in the following engagements: Mur-
phresboro. Stone River, Missionary Ridge, Lookout
Mountain, Dallas, Ringold, Peach Tree Creek, Alla-
tonia, Robertsville, Bentonville, Black River, and
others. Was disabled by being thrown from a horse
by the explosion of a caisson. He was discharged at
Rochester, N. Y., in 1865, and at the close of the war
learned the machinist's trade, which he followed for a
time, and worked in New York city, Jersey City and



Titusville, Pa., although he has always continued to
claim Harbor Creek as his home, and has spent most
of his time there. He bought his present place in
1889. Mr. Sewell was married, June 2, 1868, to Miss
Maggie, daughter of Claudius Dumars, of Harbor
Creek, who owned the place for several years where

Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r → online text (page 162 of 192)