Cuyler Reynolds.

Genealogical and family history of southern New York and the Hudson River Valley : a record of the achievements of her people in the making of a commonwealth and the building of a nation (Volume 2) online

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varnish. In 1887 he purchased a farm of one
hundred and forty acres, part of which was
called Brooks Farm, in the town of Blooming
Grove, and later another Brooks Farm of one
hundred and forty acres. Both of these farms
he still retains, living on one of them and en-
gaged in the dairy business and in general
farming. He is a member of the Grange, is
u Republican in politics, and is a member of
the Presbyterian church. He married, in 1878,
Virginia, born in 1847, fli^d in 1908. daughter
of F. Beekman Brooks. There has been one
son, Sydney B., born December 3, 1881, a
graduate of Berkeley School, New York, and
for the past nine vears connected with Fisk,
Robinson Banking House of New York City.



Robert Rumsey or Rumsie, the
RUMSEY fotmder of this family, was in

Fairfield, Connecticut, as early
as February 23. 1664, when his name appears
for the first time on the town records. He

married Rachel . Children : Benjamin,

Isaac, Robert, referred to below ; Rachel, Abi-
gail. Elizabeth, Daniel.

(II) Robert (2), son of Robert fi) and
Rachel Rumsev. was born in Fairfield. Con-
necticut, and died there. His wife's name is
unknown. Children: Joseph, referred to be-
low; Daniel, horn in 1724, died February 7.
1761, unmarried: John, born in 1726. died
December 28, 1700, married, March 19, 1752,
Esther Jones ; William ; Nathan.

(III) Joseph, son of Robert (2) Rumsey,
was born in Fairfield, Connecticut, about



1720, died in Redding, Connecticut, Novem-
ber 26, 1760, aged forty years. He married
Sarah . Children : Isaac, referred to be-
low ; Sarah, married, February 19, 1766,
James Russica ; Joseph, married, December 2,
1762, Sarah Morehouse; Daniel, baptized
October 8, 1747; William; Ephraim, baptized
February 25, 1753; Hczekiah, baptized May
9. 1756; John, baptized October 8, 1758.

(IV) Lsaac, son of Joseph and Sarah Rum-
sey, was baptized as an adult, in the First
Congregational Church of Redding, Connecti-
cut, April 16, 1778. He married. May 23, 1761,
Abigail St. John. Children: Jeremiah, re-
ferred to below; Abigail, baptized February
28, 1762: Ruth, baptized April 10, 1765 ; Noah,
baptized June 5, 1768.

(V) Jeremiah, son of Joseph and Abigail
(St. John) Rumsey, was born in Redding,
Connecticut, and baptized in the First Congre-
gational Church there. He removed from
Redding and purchased a farm near Cromwell
Lake, then in the town of Monroe, Orange
county, New York, where he died in i860,
aged ninety years. He was a blacksmith and
farmer. He married three times and had nine
children by his first wife and five by his sec-
ond wife, among whom were Samuel D., re-
ferred to below; Alfred T., born in 1804, died
in February, 1878, married Catharine Alex-
ander.

(VI) Samuel D., son of Jeremiah Rumsey,
was born in what is now the town of Wood-
bury, June 9, 1797, died in Orange county.
New York, April 15, 1868. He was educated
in the county schools, and learned the trade
of carpenter, at which he did an extensive
business throughout Orange countv, building
several mills and water wheels. In 1832 he
bought a farm of fifty-two acres of land and
afterwards purchased sixteen acres of his
father's farm. This land he tilled until his
death. He also owned considerable moun-
tain land, comprising one hundred and four-
teen acres bordering on Twin Lake and fifty
acres on Summit Lake, which belonged to
Selah after his father's death. He married
(first) Rebecca Lent and (second) Jane Lent,
the sister to his first wife. Children of first
marriage: David, Abigail. Juliet, Phoebe, Sam-
uel, Hannah; children by second marriage:
Martha; Eliz.-ibeth. married Charles Lewis, of
Woodbury Falls, New York; Selah, referred
to below.



304



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



(VII) Selah, son of Samuel D. and Jane
(Lent) Rumsey, was born in the Rumsey
homestead, April 14, 1851, in what is now
the town of Woodbury, Orange county, New
York, and is now living in Central Valley, in
the same county. He received his education
in the district schools of the county and at
Cornell Institute in Woodbury, and until his
father died helped him on the farm. He
then purchased the interests of the other heirs
of his father and conducted a dairy farm and
built uj) an extensive trade until be sold out
to the llarriman interests a few years ago.
He was also a horse breeder in a small way.
He is a Methodist in religion, and a Republican
in politics. He married, in 1882, .'\. Estelle,
daughter of Alonzo Decker, of Newburg, New
York. Children: i. Frank D., born in 1887;
graduate of the Jamaica Normal School, took
a special course at Columbia University, and
is now a teacher of manual training at Colum-
bus, Ohio ; married Maude Clayton, of Lake-
wood, New Jersey ; child, Alice Lydia. 2. Les-
lie A., born in iSgr ; now attending the Stout
Institute, Menominee, Wisconsin.



This surname appears to be
FITCHETT French. The Fitchetts were
of French origin. The im-
migrant ancestor of this family in America
probably came here early in the eighteenth
century. During the Wyoming massacre the
family was driven from Pennsylvania. One
division of it went south and located on the
eastern shore of Maryland. Another division
went with stock across the Delaware, and then,
going up the Hudson river, settled in Pough-
kecpsie. New York. Another party settled at
Coxsackie, New York, and some of its mem-
bers went on to East Troy, New York, and
so on to Canada. Thus traces of the family
can be found in all the places mentioned above,
though the exact links binding them tofrether
elude research. One branch of the family
settled in Canada, while members of other
branches are found in Pennsylvania, New
York, and in the west and south. The most
that can be done is to follow individual lines
back for some generations, with tlie ultimate
hor)e that the links mav be eventually com-
bined, nresuming that there was a common
orif^in in the majority of cases.

(I) Tames Fitchett, the first ascertainable
вАҐancestor of the Fitchett family in America



here under consideration, was born in town
of Nanticoke, Westmoreland county, now Lu-
zerne county, Pennsylvania, July 25, 1776,
died March 4, 1862. He lived at the begin-
ning of the nineteenth century on the old road
leading out of Poughkeepsie. Not very much
is on record in regard to him, though he
appears to have been a man well known and
highly respected on the country side. He was
engaged in agricultural pursuits. There is no
evidence that he ever held or sought to hold
any public position, though he took a consid-
erable interest in public affairs. He married
Susan Myers, born September 18, 1782, died
July 31, 1846. He had fourteen children,
among whom was Charles Harvey, mentioned
below.

(II) Charles Harvey, youngest child of
James Fitchett, was born at Poughkeepsie,
New York. October 23, 1826, buried at Wood-
lawn with his wife. He was educated in the
Quaker schools outside Poughkeepsie, and his
first occupation was in transporting the mails
and packages for the United States govern-
ment from Albany to Chenango county. For
years he kept a livery and boarding stable. He
was at one time United States ganger, and also
held various local offices. He belonged to the
order of Free Masons, and he served in the
Twenty-first Regiment in the civil war. His
rank was that of major, he having been pro-
moted from first quartermaster under Colonel
Wright. He was an Episcopalian in religion,
and was a vestryman of Holy Innocents
Church at Highland Falls, New York. He
married Caroline, daughter of Wilmct Rob-
erts, of Chenango county. New York.

(III) Frederick Roberts, son of Charles
Harvey and Caroline (Roberts) Fitchett, was
born at Lafavette place, Poughkeepsie, Dutch-
ess county. New York, June 3, 1858. He was
educated at the Seminary at Amenia, New
York, at \\'ilson's School, East Hampton, and
under Professor Lyons on Sciences, No. t8o
Fifth avenue. New York City. On completion
of his studies he entered the dry goods busi-
ne=s. making a specialty of linens, white goods,
and laces with the firm of P>ates, Reid &
Cooley, New York. He remained in the busi-
ness until 1805, when he retired, and in IQ07
he was one of the founders and incorporators
of the First National Bank of Highland F"alls,
New York. He was its first president, and
he still remains in that position. He has been




Jh//iam c/eraH4cn




Ranted 3^. ^eieou-ion



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



305



president of the Morgan Public Library at
Highland Falls, New York, for several years,
and is a member of the Arch Deaconry of
Orange, Sullivan, Ulster and Rockland coun-
ties. On Mr. Fitchett's father's side he is
related to the Swifts and Warners of Pough-
keepsie and the Holbrooks and Nashes of New
York. He married, Jinie 3, 1902, Susie E.,
daughter of Robert Burns, of New York City.



John Ferguson, the founder
FERGUSON of the family in this coun-
try, was bom in county Dol-
lar, Scotland, and died in New York City in
1846. He emigrated to America previous to
1800 and landed at New York from whence
he made his way on foot to Albany, where he
engaged in the hardware business, and became
a very successful merchant, eventually estab-
lishing a branch of his business in Newark,
New Jersey. He was an extensive owner of
real estate, became prominent in banking and
financial circles, and was one of the founders
of the Chemical National Bank in New York
City. He married Janet, daughter of John
McNish, of Falkirk, Scotland. Children :
Adam : William, referred to below ; John ;
James F., referred to below; Henry A.;
George P.

(H) William, son of John and Janet (Mc-
Nish) Ferguson, was born in New York City,
September 12, 1837, died in Central Valley,
New York, March 9, 1906. At the outbreak
of the civil war he enlisted as a private soldier
in the Fifth Reeiment New York Volunteers.
known as the "Duryea Zouaves'', and served
throughout the war, being promoted to the
rank of major, and honorably mustered out
of the service at the close of the war. He
then settled in New York City, where he lived
until igo2. when he removed to Central Valley
and purchased a farm on which he resided
until his death. He married, in 1863, Amanda,
dauehter of Edwin Houghton. Child len:
William E., referred to below; Jessie A , mar-
ried J. \V. Mayfair; Henry A., now a physi-
cian practicing in New York City; Kntherine;
Emma.

(H) Dr. Tames F. Ferguson, son of John
and Janet f McNish) Ferguson, was born in
New York City, October 10, 183Q. died at his
home near Central Valley. New Yoil:, ]anii;iry
6. iqo4. He graduated from the University
of New York in 1861, and from Bellevue Hos-



pital Medical College, 1862. He was the
founder of the widely known sanitatiuin, "Fal-
kirk", at Central Valley, New York. He
served with the Second New York militia
during the civil war; at the first battle of
Bull Run he was wounded and taken to Libby
Prison, later released on parole through efforts
of his mother. As major and surgeon of the
One Hundred and Sixty-fifth New York Vol-
unteers he again mustered into service, Sep-
tember 9, 1862, and at the siege of Port Hud-
son was in charge of the field hospital. He
was brevetted lieutenant-colonel of New York
Volunteers. He was discharged at Franklin,
Pennsylvania, in 1864. He was a memlier of
Kane Lodge, No. 454, Free and .'\ccepted
Masons, and attained the thirty-third degree
in Scottish Rite Masonry. He was a member
of the Lotus and Army and Navy clubs of
New York. He was unmarried.

(HI) William E., son of William and
Amanda (Houghton) Ferguson, was born in
New York City, July 5, 1864, and is now living
in Centra! Valley, Orange county. New York.
He received his early education in the public
schools of New York City, and then enga,ged
in mercantile business for a number of years,
and in 1888 became associated with his uncle.
Dr. James F. Ferguson, in the management of
"Falkirk .Sanitarium" at Central Valley, New
York, and at the death of his uncle in 1904.
succeeded to the proprietorship of the sani-
tarium, which he conducted until 1906, ivhe'i
he sold it to Dr. Carlos F. McDonald. He
then purchased a farm near Central Valley
which he still cultivates. He is a Republican
in politics, and represented the town of Wood-
bury in the Orange county board of super-
visors in 1908-09, and resigned that office when
he was elected town superintendent of high-
ways of Central Valley for a term of two
vears. He is a member of the City Club of
Newbure. and is also a member of the New
York Athletic Club in New York City. He
married, March 20, 1912, Donna, daughter of
Captain Donald Morrison, of Detroit, Michi-
gan. Her father is the senior master-mariner
navigating the Great Lakes.

This name and the family hear-
SCHEK ing it are German in origin. It
is not an old American name.
not figuring in the li.sts of that older Ger-
man emigration that directed itself towards



3o6



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



Pennsylvania and adjoining states in the;
eighteenth century. The founder of this
family in America came here in the nine-
teenth century, and the present is the third
generation descended from him. Brief as
its history on American soil is compared
with that of the older families of New Eng-
land and New York it has been a praise-
worthy record, full of creditable accomplish-
ment and full of promise for the future.

(I) Ignatius Schek, the immigrant an-
cestor in America of the family here dealt
with, was born in \\'urtembcrg, ( iermany,
March 14, 1817, died June 18, 1887, in Bar-
donia, New York. He came here as a young
man and made for himself by energy, self-
denial and sterling probity a comfortable
competence and a "-espected position. He
was a carpenter and cabinetmaker by occu-
pation in Germany, but he had a knowl-
edge of other trades and considerable ver-
satility. Therefore when he came to Amer-
ica he did not altogether follow the trade
to which he had been for the most part
accustomed in Germany, but seeing that the
growing populations and industry of the
towns and villages in New York state were
in need of continually enlarging accommo-
dations he determined to engage in the
building business. .A.ccordingly he estab-
lished himself in the business of builder
and contractor in the town of Clarkstown,
and there spent nearly the whole of his life
on American soil and it was near there that
he died. He was a Democrat in politics,
a prominent man of afTairs, and in religion
a German Presbvterian. He married
(first) February 26. 1856. in Clarkstown,
Rockland county. New York, Catherine
Schultheis. He married (second) in 1863
at Clarkstown, Rockland county. New
York, Mary Egedee. Children: Charles:
William, mentioned below: John.

(IT) William, second son of Ignatius and
Catherine (Schultheis) Schek, was born in
Bardonia, New York, August 14, 1858. He
is a carpenter and builder and has been
actively engaged in business affairs in the
town of Clarkstown. He is a German Pres-
byterian, and in politics a Democrat. He
was elected a justice of the peace of the
town of Clarkstown in 1882 and served in
that office for over sixteen years. He mar-
ried, October 30, 1879, in Clarkstown, New



York, Sarah Ann Wilson, born August i,
1859, died October 31, 1909, daughter of
John Walter and Susan Ann Clearance
(Angell) Wilson. John Walter Wilson was
born in London, England, August 7, 1826,
died April 10, 1870. Susan Ann Clearance
Angell was born September 23, 183 1, in
Devonshire, England, daughter of Thomas
and Sarah (Jones) Angell, of Devonshire,
England. The children of William and
.Sarali Ann (Wilson) Schek were: William,
mentioned below ; Cora May, born August
22, 1885, married Thomas Clark, and has
Harry Clark, born January 13, 1907: Harry,
born November 4, 1891.

(Ill) William (2), elder son of \\'illiam
(i) and Sarah Ann (Wilson) Schek, was
born in West Nyack, Rockland county, New
York. At an early age he received private
tuition in Bardonia, New York, and then
attended public school in Nanuet, where he
received instruction preparatory to entering
the high school at Nyack, and finally grad-
uated with his class in June. 1808, and re-
ceived his diploma. He attended the Trin-
ity Preparatory School in New York City
early in 1899 and remained there until 1900.
He then attended the New York University
Law School, remaining there two years. He
next attended the New York Law School
and remained one year, and then took one
year's course in Paine's Business College in
New York City. After that he went to
study law in the office of the law firm of
Gwillim & Meyers, 150 Nassau street. New
York City, remaining associated with the
firm from September 19. 1800. until May i,
1002. when said firm became known as Har-
ris, Corwin, Gunnison & Meyers, and he has
been associated with it ever since. In 1904
he was admitted to the bar in the supreme
court, second department, in Brooklyn, New
York. His specialty lies in surrogate's prac-
tice, real estate law, mortgages and loans
and a commercial practice.

He is a Democrat in politics, being secre-
tary of the Rockland County Democratic
Committee, and was elected a justice of the
peace of the town of Clarkstown, New York,
in November, 1905. for a full term of four
years and re-elected again in looQ for a
second time. He is a member of the Im-
proved Order of Redmen, Nyack Tribe. No.
209. He was elected deputy great sachem



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



307



of the order for Rockland county. He is a
member of Oneks Lodge, No. 122, Inde-
pendent Order of Odd Fellows, in Nyack. He
is also president of the West Nyack Fire
Engine Company, No. i. He is, moreover,
a member of the Lawyers' Association of
the County of New York. He and his fam-
ily are members of the German Presbyterian
church at Germonds, New York .

He married, September 6, 191 1, in the
German Presbyterian church in Germonds,
New York, the Rev. John H. Jensen, pas-
tor, officiating, Emile Pauline, born in New
York City, August i, 1890, daughter of
Emil and Theresa (Kuder) Klein. Emil
Klein was born November 14, 1862. in
Cologne, Germany. He is a prosperous
farmer and hotel keeper in West Nyack,
New York. He served as commissioner of
highways of the town of Clarkstown, New
York, for many years and is highly re-
spected by his fellow townsmen. He came
to this country from Germany when a young
man. He married Theresa Kuder, born
April 17, 1868, in Wurtemberg, Germany.
Their children are: Emile Pauline, born in
New York City, August i, 1890, married
William Schek Jr., above mentioned ; Helen,
horn May 25, 1894, married Irving Crumley;
Anna, born January i, i8q6; Lillian, born
May 7, 1900 ; Emil Jr., born March 9, 1903.



Matthias Millspaugh,
MILLSPAUGH or Miltzpagh, as the

name was originally
spelled in some cases, was one of the Ger-
man pioneers of Orange county. New York,
formerly part of Ulster county. He was one
of the Palatines. He and Joseph Mingus
were in a company that settled in the town
of Montgomery, and Mr. Millspaugh was
the progenitor probably of all the family of
this surname. He married the widow of
Johannes Mingus and, after buying the
rights of the heirs, became owner of the
Mingus farm about 1721. About this time
Matthias Millspaugh, Henry Crist, Silvanus
Crist and others made a settlement on the
opposite side of the Wallkill river from the
present village of Montgomerv. All of the
settlers were German Palatines and be-
longed to the Reformed church. Matthias
and Philip Millspaugh were naturalized bv
the New York assembly in 1735. In 1768-78



Philip and Jacob Millspaugh were living in
Montgomery. In 1790 the family had multi-
plied greatly, but had remained in Mont-
gomery. In that year, according to the first
federal census, the following were heads of
families there: Abraham, Adam, Benjamin,
Christopher, Daniel, Frederick, Isaac, Jacob,
Jacob Jr., Johannis, John, Peter, Philip Sr.,
and Philip Jr. But one will of a Millspaugh
is on record before 1800 in Ulster county.
Stephen Millspaugh, of Montgomery, yeo-
man, made his will March 19, 1789, and be-
queathed to Jonathan, eldest son of his
brother Matthias, and to Philip, son of his
brother Philip. The will was proved May

5. 1789-

The surname is found in the early records
of Orange and the adjacent counties as
Miltzpatch, Miltzpach and Milsbagh. The
immigrants bearing the name were from
both Germany and Holland, and in some
cases they came to the United States with
grown-up families. The valley of the Wall-
kill was settled by German, Dutch, and
French emigrants, who, being frugal and in-
dustrious, very soon became possessed of
competence and wealth. Of the Millspaugh
family that settled in Orange county, Jacob,
the father, was evidently an old man, as
the records do not mention any land pos-
sessed by him. The printed records begin
with Matthias, his son, who was born in
Germany or Holland, as the Journal of the
New York Assembly for 1735 shows a bill
for the naturalizaiiuu of several persons,
among them Matthias Milsbagh, Philip
Milsbagh and otheis.

Philip served as a soldier in the revolu-
tionary war. His children were Frederick,
Moses, David. Levins. Jeremiah, and Mary.
Jeremiah married Sallie Crist, November 30,
1800, she having been born on February 24,
1779, dving January 31, 1847. There were
five children of this marriage, two of whom
died in infancy; those who grew to adult
life were: Gilbert who became a tailor;
Harvey, al.so a tailor: and Catherine Ann.
It is possible that the family here dealt with
is descended from this Jeremiah, though the
exact links have not as yet been traced.

(I) Renwick Millspaugh. undoubtedly a
member of the Millspaugh family whose
earlier generations are outlined above, was
born at the city of Newburgh, Orange coun-



3o8



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



ty, New York, May 28, 1830, died September
19, 1885. He was educated in the common
schools, and was an auctioneer and furniture
dealer all his life. He took considerable in-
terest in the public affairs of his city, state
and nation, though he did not hold any pub-
lic office. He was an attendant of the Meth-
odist Episcopal church. He married, in
1854, Emma Young, born October 11, 1836,
died in February, 1885. Children: i. Wil-
liam, died in infancy. 2. Ida, died in infancy.
3. Eva, died in infancy. 4. Caroline, now a
teacher in a Washington public school. 5.
Thomas H., of whom further.

(H) Thomas H., son of Renwick and Em-
ma (Young) Millspaugh, was born October
8, 1865, in the city of Newburgh, Orange
county. New York. He graduated from the
Newburgh Academy in 1882, and was an
assistant to his father until 1887. when he
became connected with H. C. Higginson.
In 1899 the Higginson Manufacturing Com-
pany was organized and he was made secre-
tary of the company. On Mr. Higginson's
retirement in icpg Mr. Millspaugh became
president of the company, a position he still
holds. Mr. Millspaugh is a member of the
Newburgh Lodge, No. 309, Free and Ac-
cepted Masons, and was its master in 1895;
Highland Chapter, No. 52, Royal Arch
Masons ; Hudson Commandery, No. 35 ;
Ringold Hose Company: and the City and
Wheelman's Club, of Newburgh. Orange
county. New York.

He married, on April 13. 1887, Frances,
daughter of Charles and Frances (Green)
Moss, of the city of Newburgh. There has
been one son by this marriage, Kenneth R.



The surname SenflF is German
SENFF in origin. In the German

"Senf" means "mustard", and it
is probably from that word that the surname
is derived. In Germany the name has been
borne bv many noble families and to it are
attached several coats-of-arms. It is a prev-
alent name in Germany and Holland, but is
not borne very extensively in this country.
Doubtless a number of the German immi-
grants who came to this country in large
numbers in the eighteenth century brought
the name with them, but the family here
dealt with is only here in the third genera-
tion, the grandfather of the youngest gener-



ation having been the immigrant ancestor in
this country.

(I) Henry Senfif, M.D., the immigrant an-
cestor in America of the Senfif family here
dealt with, was born in Briickeburg,
Schaumberg Lippe, Germany, April 4, 1804,
died May 5. 1868, in New York City. He
came to this country in 1832 and settled in
New York City. He was engaged in the
drug business and secured employment in
that line, but later he studied medicine and
surgery, graduated from New York Col-
lege of Physicians and Surgeons, and be-
came, when he had completed the course,
assistant surgeon at West Point. While at



Online LibraryCuyler ReynoldsGenealogical and family history of southern New York and the Hudson River Valley : a record of the achievements of her people in the making of a commonwealth and the building of a nation (Volume 2) → online text (page 58 of 95)