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Commemorative biographical record of New Haven county, Connecticut, containing biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens and of many of the early settled families .. (Volume 1, pt.3) online

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subject, is the eldest. (2) Annie B., born Dec. 25,
i860, married George A. Elrner. then of Mil ford,
and now a resident of Stamford, Conn. (3 ) Bertha
A., horn Sept. 26. 1868, is at home.

Edgar T. Gark was born Dec. 14. 1859. in
Woodmont, where he grew to manhood, the schools
of the town ati'ording him a practical education.
He never learned a trade, and on June 12, 1882,
he went to Milford to work in the shipping iLpart-
ment of the straw factory, where he remained eight
years. For some time afterward he was occupied
with the care of his father's property, and for four
years he conducted a grocery and bakery, but at
present he merely looks after his rents and invest-
ments. He takes a loyal interest in all that con-
cerns his town, and has for twelve years been a
member of the Milford tire department, the local
Grange, the Royal Arcanum, and the I. O O. F.
On Nov. 6, 1900, he was elected on the Republican
ticket as representative of ^Milford for two years,
and for years he has served as chairman of the
board of assessors.

On Aug. 2, 1888. Mr. Clark married Anna L.
Botsford, daughter of Treat Botsford. of Milford.
She died Dec. 7. 1888, and on Oct. 30, 1895. he mar-
ried Miss Charlotte M. Clark, of Orange, Conn.,
daughter of Henry M. Clark, of that town, and his
wife, Ida Merwin, a native of Xew Preston. Conn.
Mr. Clark is a member of the First Congregational
Church, is a member of the First Ecclesiastical
Society, and has been treasurer of same for the
past six years.

EDWARD B. BRADLEY, a conductor on the
New York & New Haven railroad, now residing
at No. 100 Cliff street, Ansonia, was born ^larch
20, 1845, '^ Newtown, this State, where the family
had long been established. There his father. James
W. Bradley, and his grandfather, Abijah Bradley,
were born. The latter was in his early life a chair
manufacturer, and in his later years a farmer. He
reached the great age of ninety-one years.

James W. Bradley was reared on the farm, and
in his early life learned the trade of chairmaking.
For a number of years he was the proprietor and
manager of a lunch counter and eating house in
Newtown, and then moved to Derby, to take a po-
sition as stage driver between that city and Bridge-
port. Pie was later gi\i n a run between Wood-
bury and the Derby docks. He had a stage from



Woodbury to Seymour, in connection with the
Naugatuck railroad. Selling this stage route, he
bought a farm in Southbury, which he cultivated
for seven years, and then sold, going into a hotel
at Se\Tnour. which he conducted for a time. He
then again became a farmer for a time, and after-
ward had a restaurant in New Haven, which he
disposed of to take the "Madison House," and later
the "Tontine Hotel," both in New Haven. For
twenty-five years he was proprietor and manager
of the "Tontine," where he died at the age of
seventy-six years. He built up that hostelry until
it became one of the leading hotels of the State ; it
has been patronized by many thousand people.
James W. Bradley married Abigail Somers, who
was born in Newtown. She became the mother of
five sons, three of whom are still living: James
Monroe, now in Muskegon, Mich.; Albert H., re-
tired, and living in New Haven; and Edward B.
Mrs. Bradley died in 1890, at the age of seventy-
five. Both parents belonged to the First Methodist
Church, and were highly respected people in their
day.

Edward B. Bradley spent the earlier years of
his life under the parental roof, and obtained his
education in the public schools of the city. When
he was eighteen years of age he left home and
secured a position as driver on a stage running
between Seymour and New Haven. \'ery shortly
he bought this run, giving his note of $1,500 to his
father. This enterprise proved highly successful,
and the }-oung man spent seven years on the line.
Mr. Bradley ran the first train on schedule time
on the New Plaven & Derby railroad, Aug. 9, 1871.
There was not a platform along the line. Our
subject was new at the business ; not a ticket was
sold, and he took all cash fares. He had a hard
time, but he persevered, and is ndw known as one
of the tried and capable conductors in the State.
During the years that have intervened Mr. Bradley
has witnessed a wonderful transformation, not only
in the road, but in the region through which he
passes. The road has become one of the best in
New England, and the cities have greatly prospered.
When Air. Bradley began in this line two trains a
dav were sufficient for all the needs of the business.
Now he goes over the line six times a day. and
there arc twelve other trains. He has seen but
one wreck, and never has had a charge of any
kind preferred against him. His record as a train-
man is clean, and his showing as a man and citizen
is equally good. Mr. Bradley lived in Seymour un-
til 1881, when he moved to .\nsonia.

Mr. Bradley was married, Nov. 29. i8r/i. to
Celestia A. Steele, daughter of John B. and Emeline
( Stewart ) Steele, of Seymour, who had two chil-
dren. Airs. Bradley being now the only survivor.
Her mother died in 1881. at the age of sixty-two
years, and her father at the 'age of forty }ears.
Air. and Mrs..Braflley have one child, Emma, wlni
married L. F. Anschutz, and is the mother of three



,1- ;,. : .11



r_ - '^, ., I /



1084



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



children, Edward Bradlev, Louise F. and Lora
May.

Mr. Bradley is a Republican in politics. He is
a member of George Washington, Lodge, F. & A.
M. ; ilount Vernon Chapter; New Haven Com-
mandery, Knights Templar; Mechanics Lodge, No.
72f I- O. O. F.. at Seymour; and is a charter mem-
ber of the local division of the Order of Railway
Conductors. He and his wife attend the First Con-
gregational Church of Ansonia. Mr. Bradley has
■been remarkably successful throughout life, and
stands to-day on an enviable plane, where his talents,
business ability and upright and manlv character
alike command the respect and confidence of the
public.

DAVID SMITH, a man highly esteemed for
his many good qualities, was a direct descendant
of George Smith, one of the first settlers of New
Haven. He was born in West Haven Feb. 10,
1798, and died in that township at the age of seven-
ty years. Left fatherless at an early age, he was
reared by an uncle, and acquired such education as
the district schools afforded. He became a car-
penter by trade, and followed that calling in the
South, but later returned to his old home in W'est
Haven, where his declining years were spent. He
built the house now occupied by Airs. Beardslev.
-on the site of the first West Haven parsonage. In
all alTairs of the town he took an active part, and
. was ever in the van in any move that would ad-
-vance the moral or material welfare' of this com-
munity. Of the strictest integritv himself, he
looked to find the same honesty of purpose in others,
■ and his presence, with its fearlessness for the right,
inspired what was best in his associates.

On Aug. 10, 1854, Mr. Smith married Susan
Prudden, who was born in Orange, this county,
Aug. 25, 18 19, a daughter of Samuel Prudden,
and a direct descendant of Rev. Peter Prudden,
the first pastor of the church at !Milford. Of this
amion was born Sept. 13, 1855, a son, David Prud-
den, who died Feb. 13, 1871. On Oct. 6, 1874,
Mrs. Smith married Dr. Lucius N. Beafdsley,
Avhose life record may be found elsewhere in this
volume.

Rev. Peter Prudden was a prominent preacher
in England before emigrating to America. He
■came to Connecticut from Boston with the New
Haven Colony and afterward led a branch colony
to Milford. He married Joanna Bovse, daughter
of an English clergy-man. Rev. Peter Prudden
was a college graduate, and a man of much natural
ability. He was greatlx' esteemed as a peacemaker
and as a wise counselor not only in his own com-
munitv, but throughout the entire colonv of New
Haven. Of him Cotton }ilather says, "his death
■was felt by the colony as the fall of a pillar, which
made the whole fa brick to shake."

Samuel Prudden. Mr.-. Beardsle.v's father, was
the son of Samuel Prudden, of North Milford, now



called Orange, and Anna Clark, a representative of
another pioneer family of Milford. He was a suc-
cessful teacher as well as an intelligent and enter-
prising farmer. Like others of his family he was
identified with the Congregational Church. His
wife, Susanna Smith, was the daughter of Captain
Gould Smith, and through her mother was a de-
scendant of Rev. Thomas Hooker.

Since Dr. Beardsley's death Mrs. Beardsley has
resided in the home erected by Mr. Smith, as above
stated, and is wearing her eighty-two years of a
well-spent life with all the grace and dignity of a
noble woman. Aniong her benefactions may be
mentioned a tablet in the Milford Church, in-
scribed to the memory of its first pastor, Rev..
Peter Prudden.

EDWARD T. ROOT was born in Waterbury
Feb. 12, 1840, and his lifelong career in that city
has been honorable and upright. George Root, his
father, was born in 1796 in New York City, where
he died at the age of ninety years.

Reuben Root, the father of George, was born in
Southington, Conn., and died in New York. He
was of English extraction. He worked in New
York as a ship carpenter during the war of the
Revolution. He married Hannah George, and they
had two children ; George, the father of Edward
T. ; and Amos, who lived in New York, where he
was a merchant, and died when quite young.

George Root, the father of Edward T., spent
the first twenty-one years of his life in the city of
New York, where he acquired his education, and
where he learned the trade of cabinetmaker. When
a boy he helped to make the coffin of Robert Ful-
ton. In Waterbury he followed his trade as long
as he was able to work, living there about seventy
years. He married Temperance Bronson, who was
bom in Waterbury, a daughter of Samuel Bron-
son, and a granddaughter of Major Samuel Bron-
son, a soldier of the Revolution. George Root
and his wife were the parents of three children,
Jane A., Edward T. and Henry B. Jane married
Sanniel Pemberton, of Newark, N. J. George
Root was a Whig, and in his later life a Repub-
lican. For many generations back the Roots were
identified with the Congregational Church.

Edward T. Root spent his bovhood days in
Waterbury, where he was reared. He attended the
public schools until he reached the age of sixteen,
when he became a clerk in the postoffice, holding
that position for a year. For a time he also clerked,
boy fashion, in his father's store, and in 1859 en-
tered the insurance office of Hall & Smith. After
a time Mr. Hall retired, and Mr. Smith continued
the business alone for some years. About 1885
the firm became Smith & Root, and in 1896 the firm
of Root & Boyd was formed. Thev write all kinds
of insurance, and ha\e a fine list of client^:.

In 18(18 .Mr. Knot married Miss Julia M. Rog-
ers, uf Chester, \'t., daughter of Isaac Rogers.



»'; :. ". . T' .'



'>7 ' '



••' - I '







DAYID SMITH.



v^



AT



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



10S5



i\Irs. Root (Iio<I in 18S6, and tlie only cliild of this
union, Frederick H., died in January, 1895. In
1888 Mr. Root married Miss Caroline B. Blake,
daiig-hter of Dr. A. S. Blake, of Waterbury. Mr.
Root is a Republican, and has been councilman,
town assessor and representative of his town in
the State Legislature. Fraternally he is a thirty-
second-degree Mason, and is a charter member of
Continental Lodge. Xo. 76, F. & A. ^L, organized
in 1862 ; he has been a member since 1862 of
Nosahogan Lodge. Xo. 21, L O. O. F. As a mem-
ber of the Waterbury Club he comes into contact
with the best and leading men of the city, and in
these circles his standing is unquestioned. With his
family he attends Trinity Episcopal Church.

Mr. Root enlisted in the Union army in 1862.
in Company A, 23d Conn. V. I., and was mustered
out at X'ew Haven the following year. He was
taken prisoner and paroled, so that his experience
of active warfare was limited.

HERBERT LOUIS BEXTON, a farmer and
dairyman in Guilford, was born April 16, 1843, ^"''l
is a native of that town. The first of the name in
Guilford was Edward Benton, a native of England,
who died in Guilford in ibSo. His wife, Anna, died
in 1671. They had the following children: Ed-
ward ; Daniel ; Andrew, who married Elizabeth
Rolfe; Hannah, who married Robert Ackerly ;
Mary, who married Samuel Thorp : John, who died
young; Tabbitha, who married Simon Simpson;
Elizabeth ; Sarah, who married Thomas Wright ;
and Zacheus.

Daniel Benton, the second child in the family of
Edward, was born in 1638, and died June 10. 1672.
He was a farmer and land owner, and belonged to
the church. A man of character and standing, he
ranked well in his day. He married Rachel Good-
rich, who died in 1685, and they were the parents
of four children : Joanna, who married John Tur-
ner ; Ebenezer, mentioned below ; Beltzah ; and Re-
becca, who married Joseph Halsey.

Ebenezer Benton was born in October, 1663,
in Guilford, where his entire life was spent, en-
gaged in farming. He was a prominent citizen,
especially in church matters. He died on his farm
June 22, 1758, and was buried in Guilford. His
wife, Abigail, was born March 6. 1670. and died
April 13, 1753 ; she was buried in the Guilford cem-
etery. They were married June 14, 1694, and their
children were: Daniel; Elizabeth, who married
Samuel Buell ; Ebenezer, who married- Esther Crit-
tenden ; Abigail, who married Ebenezer Critten-
den; and Caleb, who married Sarah Stone.

Deacon Daniel Benton was bom in_ Guilford
June I, 1695, and was a deacon of the Congrega-
tional Church. He died Aug. 25, 1756. In 1728
he married Elizabeth Stone, who was born Oct. 6,
1706. died in 1753. and was buried in Guilford.
For his second wife he married Mrs. Sarah Seward.
who died March 12, 1762. His family consisted of



the following children: Sarah; Daniel; Eli; Sam-
uel ; Jared, who married Elizabeth Collins ; Silas,
who married Abigail Lindsley ; Nathan, who mar-
ried Rachel Chittenden ; Ann, who married Philip
Mann; Elizabeth, who married Rufus Graves;
Daniel James; and one that died in infancy.

Silas Benton, who was born July 25, 1739, was
engaged in farming throughout life, and died Slarch
19, 1828. On June 6, 176S, he married Abigail
Lindsley. who was born in 1743, in Branford, and
died in 181 1. About the close of the year 181 1
he married for his second wife Widow Lois Plant.
He had the following children: Abigail; Daniel,
who married Fannie Eliot ; Joseph ; Isaac, who mar-
ried Sarah Robinson; Dan Lindsley; Julin ; and
Silas.

Dan Lindsley Benton, tne grandfather of Her-
bert L. Benton, was born in 17S0, and was a life-
long farmer. He was a well-known citizen and a
member of the church. He died June 18, 1859, and
was buried in the West cemetery. On March 11,^
1805, he married Betsy Seward, who was born in
1788. and died Aug. 20, 1865. They had the fol-
lowing children ; David Merrick ; Betsy Ann, who-
married Eli Parmelee ; Dan Lindsley ; Harriet, who
married Samuel Davis ; Clarissa, who married Nel-
son Hotchkiss : Lydia, who married Henry Rankin ;
Mary Elizabeth, who married Charles Landon ;
Ella Maria, who married Charles M. Stone; Rich-
ard Henry, who married Charlotte E. Parens; John,
who married Catherine L. Kelsey ; Martha Seward,
who married Deacon Edwin O. Davis, of Guilford r
and David IMerrick (2), who married Frances S.
Smith.

Dan Lindsle}- Benton, father of Herbert L., was
born March 5. iSro, on the Guilford farm, where
he received a good common-school education, and
was reared to farming, which was his life business.
He owned a large tract of land at Sachem's Head,
on which he made extensive improvements. In
politics he was a Democrat. He died in 1894, and
was buried in the West cemetery in Guilford. In
1833 he married ]\Iartha M. Norton, who was
born Nov. 20, 181 1, and died June 12, 1835. TJiey
were -the parents of one child, Darwin M. For his
second wife Mr. Benton was married, Alay 30, 1841.
to Elizabeth Blakeslee. who was born June 29, 181S.
in Northford, and is still living. To this union were
born three children : Herbert Louis ; Charles Linds-
ley, who resides on the homestead ; and Edward
W., also making his home on the homestead.

Herbert Louis Benton was born on the home-
stead April 16. 1845. attended the district school
and Guilford Academy, and remained on the farm
until after his marriage, when he began farming
on the place where he is now located. Mr. Benton
has also been a carpenter and a boatbuilder. He is
a hard worker, and is much respected for his indus-
try. In religious connection he is a member of the
Episcopal Church, where he officiates as a vestry-
man. His political affiliation is with the Democratic



■:.il I



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T.!i\-',^jt r.






,.',.'■(



io86



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



party ; he hns never souc:ht an office. Mr. Benton
was married, in Guilford, June ii, 1885, to Miss
Fannie M. Eliot, daughter of Louis R. and Fannie
(Griswold) Eliot, both of whom are deceased, and
is the father of two children: Eliot H.. born Sept.
16, 1889; and Ruth E., born Oct. 15. 1892.

ELIAS W. DAVIS. M. D., Seymour, is a native
of Massachusetts, born in Pa.xton in 1855, a grand-
son of Deacon David Davis, also born in Paxton,
who married Patty Howe in 17S0 or 1785, and had
a family of ten children. He was a captain of a
militia company formed after tne Revolutionary
war, which corps he drilled to sucli perfection that
it became known as one of the crack companies of
that day. Up to the time of his death lie was a
deacon of the Congregational Church.

David G. Davis, father of our subject, is the
youngest of the ten children born to Deacon David
Davis, and at the present time is living in Worces-
ter, Mass., at the ripe old age of eighty-seven years.
Fie was engaged in farming, also in the manufacture
of boots and shoes and was prominent in business
enterprises till within a few vears ago. For twenty-
five years he was a selectman, and at one time rep-
resented his town in the State Legislature of [Mas-
sachusetts. He married Sarah Gilbert Earle, of
Paxton, Mass., and through her the family is traced
to old English ancestry, though the first Davis an-
cestor was a Welshman. Five children were born
of this union, all yet living, viz.: William P.,
Eliza A., David, Elias W. and Gilbert G. Of these,
William P. is a physician in Reading, [Mass. ; Eliza
A. married John Davis Hudson, a cabinetmaker of
Mason City, 111., and died in 1900; David, a boot
manufacturer in Wilkesbarre, Penn., married Mary
Sherman; Gilbert G., who carries on a printing and
blank-book manufacturing business in Worcester,
Mass.. married Minnie Warren, of Worcester.

Elias W. Davis, the subject proper of this sketch,
lived in Paxton Hills, Mass., until he \vas fifteen
years of age, receiving his primary education at the
district schools, after which he prepared for Yale
College at the Leicester and Worcester (Mass.)
Academies, graduating in the class of 1880. He
then returned home and because of poor health
took up farming. In 1889, having in the meantime
married, he moved with his family to Xcw Haven,
where he commenced the study of medicine in Yale
Medical College, graduating in June, 1892, from
the Medical School, after which he commenced the
practice of his profession in Seymour, Conn., where
he is meeting with eminent success.

On Nov. 5, 1883, Dr. Elias W. Davis married
Eliza H. Dodd, a native of Paxton, Mass., and a
descendant of the celebrated Bigelow family of
that State. Two children, both daughters, have
been born to this union: Florence [Marion, 1S93;
and Gertrude Elizabeth. 1805. The parents are
members of the Congregational Churcii. Sociallv
the Doctor is affiliated with Morning Star Lodge,



Xn. 47, Y. & A. M., and with Evening Star Cha[)ter,
Xo. 45, of Seymour. He is medical examiner for
the town of Seyn^our, and one of the medical di-
rectors of the State Masonic Home at Wallingford,
Conn. As a physician there is none more promi-
nent or popular in the county. In his office stands
an old-fashioned desk that has been handed down
in the family for some one hundred forty years, a
work of art which at once suggests the time honored
saying: "A thing of beauty is a joy forever."

FREDERICK W. HUBBELL, one of the
valiant defenders of the Union during the dark
days of the Civil war, and the present efficient su-
perintendent of the Oxford town farm, has made
his own way in the world without the aid of influ-
ence or wealth, and has arisen to a position of
prominence through his own well-directed efforts,
his native genius and acquired ability being the
stepping-stones on which he has mounted. He was
born in Oxford March 24, 1844, a son of Everett
and Jane E. (Sperry) Hubbell, natives of the same
place. In their family were nine children, eight
sons and one daughter, namel}' : Samuel ; John
Henry; Frederick W. ; Wales, deceased; Lewis;
George ; Charles and Henry W., both deceased; and
Elizabeth, deceased.

Frederick W. Hubbell was born and reared on
a farm, and received his education in the common
schools. At the tender age of seven years he be-
gan earning his own livelihood by working for his
l)oard and clothes for Capt. Hull, with whom he re-
mained seven years, and then worked as a farm hand
for others until he entered the service of his coun-
try during the Civil war. On June 7, 1862, he en-
listed as a private in Company B, 20th Conn. V. I.;
was mustered into the United States service at Xew
Haven ; from there was ordered to Washington, D.
C. ; and later to Alexandria, \ a. His first engage-
ment was at Chancellorsville, and the second at
Cassville, where he was wounded in the left side by
a minie ball ; however, he was never absent from
duty one day. Later he participated in. the battles
of Gettysburg and Savamiah, and the siege of At-
lanta! After leaving the last named city he was
detailed as a scout, and while on a scouting expedi-
tion near Columbia, \'a., was captured, but soon
afterward he and two companions escaped, and he
was iinallv exchanged. Shortly after this Air. Hub-
bell received a furlough and returned home, and
while here Lee surrendered, thus putting an end to
the war. Since then he has made his home in Ox-
ford with the exception of two years spent at
Xaugatuck, Coim. In 1882 he was appointed su-
perintendgyt of the Oxford town farm, and has
most capably and satisfactorily filled that position
ever since. He also owns and operates a fine farm
of ninety acres in the same town, and in all his un-
dertakings has met with mo.-t excellent success.

In i8'i5 Mr. Hulihcll was united in marriage
with [Miss Alice E. Gates, of SimsLury, Conn., and



COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD.



1087



to them have bet.n. liorn three chiliren: Piurtoii E. ;
Arthur D. ; and one who died in infancy. Fra-
ternally JMr. Hubbell is a member of Upson Post.
Xo. 40, G. A. R., of Seymour: and politically is
identified with the Republican party. His fellow
citizens, recognizing- his worth and ability, have
called him to public office, and he has served as
constable thirty years and deputy she'ritT for five
vcars, filling the latter position at the present time.

WILLIAM H. E\'AXS, an honored veteran
of the Civil war and a highly esteemed citizen of
\V'oodbridge, was born in ^liddletown, Middlesex
Co., Conn., April 5. 1840, a son of Chauncey and
Clarissa (Maynard) Evans, also natives of that
place, where tliey made their home throughout life.
The father was engaged in farming near Middle-
town, now Cromwell, and there died at the age of
sixty years. Our subject's maternal grandfather,
;Mr. Maynard, was a soldier of the Revolutionary
war and died in 1837. Our subject had an older,
sister, Delia, who died voung, and a half-brother,
Bissell Stark.-, who was a soldier of the Civil war
and was numliered among the missing.

Mr. Evans' advantages for securmg an educa-
tion were limited to a brief period in the common
schools, for after his sixth year he was dependent
upon his own resources for a livelihood. In 1862
he enlisted in the 24th Conn. \'. I., — a regiment
composed .of Middletown volunteers. Though he
enlisted for only nine months, he was in the ser\-ice
thirteen, and during that period took part in some
of the fiercest engagements of the war. During
the siege of Fort Hudson he was in the rifie pits
twentv-five consecutive days, and was so exhausted



Online LibraryChicago Beers (J.H.) & Co.Commemorative biographical record of New Haven county, Connecticut, containing biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens and of many of the early settled families .. (Volume 1, pt.3) → online text (page 74 of 94)