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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iCtter written to Thomas Maxwell Potts, the
skilled and intelligent genealogist of the Potts
family, by the late William John Potts. It
reads :

"This summer I have renewed my acquaintance
with Mr. George H. Potts, of the City of New York.
He is. as you are aware, first cousin to my father,
and is now seventy-four years old, — a tall, distin-
guished and elegant looking man of at least six feet
high, not inclined to stoutness, which characterizes
two of his sons. .Among Mr. George H. Potts' tra-
ditions of his father, uncles and grandfather, were
several which are confirmed in part by my aunt,
(Hannah) Elizabeth Potts and my uncle, Charles
Clay Potts, both aged above seventy years. Hugh
Potts, as he was commonly called, though his full
name was .Mexander Hugh, father of the said
George, and brother to my grandfather, was a re-
markably handsome man. One of the Robesons who
had known him in his youth, possibly an old sweet-
heart of his, said he was the handsomest man she
ever knew. The said Mary Robeson died in Phila-
delphia, aged about seventy years, ten or more years
ago. Hugh Potts was six feet one inch high;
weighed 220 pounds, and was a most pow-erful man.
On one occasion he lifted with one hand fourteen
56-pound weights to above the knee. He held on
his outstretched hand one Ramsay, sheriff of Hunter-
don county, in a standing position, he being steadied
by a man on each side; took him eiUircly across
the room. He also carried said Ramsay, standing
on his (Mr. Potts') knee, the back part of it turned
up, across the room. Mrs. Rockhill, sister of Hugh
Potts, was also of large frame. She was six feet in
height. Thomas Potts, high shtriflf of Sussex
county, N. J., father of Hugh Potts, on one occa-
sion had to arrest Edward Marshall, the hero of
the famous Indian walk, who lived on an island
in the Delaware, out of his jurisdiction, and was
beside no mean adversary. My. great grand-
father, Thomas Potts, a large and powerful man,
took a boat and crossing over to the island where
I^farshall lived, bound him hand and foot, and
when he landed his prisoner on the Jersey shore,
served his warrant on him."

Hugh Henry Potts married Elizabeth
Hughes, about the year 1800, at Carlisle.
Pennsylvania. .She was the daughter of Cap-
tain John Hughes, a distinguished officer of
the revolution, who enlisted as a sergeant in
the Sixth Pennsylvania Battalion, January 29,
1776, and served in various capacities to the
close of the war. His position of brigade
quartermaster during the years 1778 and 1779
brought him in close personal companionship
with (General George Washington. Hugh
Henry Potts also inclined to a military career
and near the close of the war of 1812 was



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



443



appointed to a captaincy in the United States
army. Their children were: i. EHzabeth
Hughes, born April 15, 1801 ; married Ed-
ward Augustus Rockhill, by whom: William
Potts Rockhill, and Gainor Rockhill, who
married Edward Van Cleif. 2. Thomas, born
February 5, 1803. 3. Sarah Ann, born May
5, 1805. 4. John Hughes, born March 28,
1807. 5. William L., born May 2, 1809. 6.
George Alexander Henry, see forward.

(V) George Alexander Henry, son of
Hugh Henry and Elizabeth (Hughes) Potts,
was born September 22, 181 1, died in New
York City, on April 28, 1888. He was born
on his father's estate on the Delaware river
in Bucks county, Pennsylvania. Bereft of his
mother by death in 18 13, he found a home
in Pittstown, Hunterdon county, New Jersey,
in the family of his father's sister, Mrs. Judge
Rockhill. In 1829 he removed to Pottsville,
Pennsylvania, and at once engaged in mining
operations, and from 1834 to 1845 was the
most extensive individual coal operator in the
region. He erected the first engine for min-
ing coal below the water level ever set up in
Pennsylvania ; he also built the first boat which
was employed to convey coal from the Schuyl-
kill region direct to New York City. In 1853
George A. H. Potts removed to New York
City and became the head of the New York
branch of the wholesale coal and iron firm
of Lewis Audenried & Company. C^n the
death of Mr. Audenried in 1874 this firm
was dissolved, Mr. Potts retiring, and the
business has since been continued by his sons,
Frederic A. Potts and William Rockhill Potts,
and still later by his grandson, Frederic A.
Potts. George A. H. Potts was one of the
original incorporators of the National Park
Bank, and its president from September, 1879,
to the time of his death in 1888. In person
he was above the medium height and of strik-
ing personal appearance.

On September ig, 1832, he married Emily
Dilworth Gumming, at Pottsville, Pennsylva-
nia. She was the daughter of George M.
Cumming. who was born March 15, 1813, and
died in 1857. On July 2, 1863, he married
his second wife, Helen Blendina Hard. She
was born at Albion, New York. October 17,
1837. and was the daughter of Judge Gideon
Hard. George A. H. Potts resided on Madi-
son avenue. New York Citv, and had a sum-



mer home and farm at Somerville, New Jer-
sey. The children of George A. H. and Emily
Dilworth (Cumming) Potts were: i. George
Cumming, born at Pottsville, Pennsylvania,
August 3, 1834; married (first) Mary Dallas,
daughter of George M. Dallas, vice-president
of the United States in 1844; Mary Dallas
died in 1852; there were no children. George
C. Potts married his second wife, Laurette
Eustis, at Philadelphia, on December 4, 1863.
She was the daughter of Alexander Brooks
Eustis and Aurore (Grelaud) Eustis, and was
born at Milton, Massachusetts, January 14,
1845, and died at Pottsville, Pennsylvania.
November 4, 1868. George C. Potts was en-
gaged in coal mining operation at Locust
Dale, in Schuylkill county, Pennsylvania, op-
erating what is known as the Potts Colliery,
in 1852, later sold out to the Philadelphia &
Reading Railroad Company, and after the
civil war was in the stock brokerage business
in Philadelphia as partner in the concern of
R. Ellis & Company. Later he was appointed
coal sales agent for the Philadelphia & Read-
ing railroad for the Northern New York and
Canadian district, with headquarters at Roch-
ester, New York, where he now resides
(1912). There were four children: i. Maud
Eustis, born April 3, 1865 : married at Belle-
fonte, Pennsylvania, to Augustus G. Paine Jr.,
April 8. 1890. ii. George Eustis. born April
15, 1866; married at Marquette, Michigan, to
Sarah White Call, September 14. 1898. iii.
Hugh Eustis, born October 14, 1867; married
Grace Paine, iv. Laurette Eustis, born at
Pottsville, Pennsylvania, October 12, 1868;
married at Germantown, Pennsylvania, Jan-
uary 24, 1905. to L. Frederic Pease. 2. Fred-
eric Augustus, see forward. 3. Isabel Cum-
ming, born at Pottsville, February 12, 1838,
died at Flushing, Long Island, .'\pril 10, 19TO;
married Dr. Joseph Lawrence Hicks, who was
born at Flushing, December 10, 1834. Chil-
dren: i. Emilv Dilworth. horn at Flushing,
lune 18. 186^: married Edward Brevoort
Renwick. at Flushing, August 2. 1900. ii.
Margaret, born at Flushing, Tulv 29. 1867;
married October 2g, 1890. to S. Edson Gage,
who was born at Dover. New Jersey. July 13.
1866. iii. Zelia Isabel, born at Flushing, Au-
gust I, 1876; married at Flushing, Long Isl-
and, to the Rev. \\'illiam Edtrar McCord.
who was born September 19. 1858. 4- Wil-



444



SOUTHERN NEW YORK



Ham Rockhill, born August ii, 1841 ; married
Emily Brevoort, who was the daughter of
Henry Brevoort and Bridget Seeley and was
born January 29, 1846. WilHam Rockhill
Potts was connected with his brother, F. A.
Potts, in the wholesale coal business. He
lived at Plainfield, New Jersey, afterward
removing to New York City, and had a sum-
mer residence at Monmouth Beach, New Jer-
sey. Children : i. Robert Barnhill, born Feb-
ruary 19, 1869, at Greenville, Tennessee; mar-
ried to Helen Jacquelin, October 22, 1902, in
New York City. ii. Edith Brevoort, born
July 27, 1871, at Somerville, New Jersey;
married May 25, 1901, to Howard Walton,
at New York City. iii. Hugh Rockhill, born
June 16, 1876, at Monmouth Beach, New Jer-
sey; married November 22, 1902, to Florence
McAnerny, at New York City. iv. Emily Bre-
voort, born March 31, 1879, at Plainfield, New
Jersey, v. George Henry, born July 10, 188 1,
at Monmouth Beach, New Jersey ; married to
Selina Fanshawe, Sei)tember 30, 1904, at Mon-
mouth Reach; died November i, 1911, at New
York City. 5. Emily E. Potts, born at Potts-
ville. Pennsylvania, July 14, 1843 ; married
Joseph S. Harris, at New York City, April 27,
1882. 6. Juliet Adele Potts, born February i,
1846, at Pottsville, Pennsylvania; married
William Bainbridge-HofF, at New York City,
January 6. i86f); children: i. Arthur, born
December 12, 1869; married Louise D. Roose-
velt, at Skaneateles, September 14, 1897. ii.
Louise, born June 4. 1871 ; married Bertram
W. R. Greene at Washington, District of Co-
lumbia, June 27, 1903. 7. Zelia, born at Potts-
ville. Pennsylvania, June 11, 1850; married
Joseph S. Harris, at New York City, October
19, 1896.

The children of George A. H. Potts and
his second wife, Helen (Hard) Potts, were:
Bertha, married James L. Greenleaf ; Helen,
married G. M. Wynkoop ; Theodosia, married
Dr. Benjamin Baker.

(VT") Hon. Frederic Augustus Potts, son
of George A. Henry and Emily Dilworth
(Gumming) Potts, was born at Pott.sville,
Pennsylvania. April 4, 1836. and died at New
York, New York. November 9, 1888. He
was long identified with the coal and iron
business in New York City and controlled a
very extensive business as a coal merchant.
He was a member of the senate of New Jer-



sey from Hunterdon county in 1874. and in
1878 was the Republican candidate for the
Fourth New Jersey district, known as the
"Democratic Gibraltar." He proved his won-
derful popularity by reducing the opposition's
plurality to 1,500. which had formerly been
6.500 votes. In 1880 he was the Republican
nominee for governor of New Jersey, and so
greatly was he respected that he was defeated
by the narrow margin of 651 votes, in a state
then strongly Democratic. He was a person
of remarkably fine physique and presence,
possessed a strong character and was much
liked because of a genial disposition. In New
York City he resided at No. 39 East Thirty-
ninth street, and had a summer home on the
old Potts farm, at Pittstown, Hunterdon
county, New Jersey, and also at Monmouth
Beach, New Jersey.

Hon. Frederic A. Potts married, at Lenox,
Massachusetts, October 10, 1857, -Sarah Bre-
voort, who was born at Boonton, New Jersey,
August 14, 1834; died at New York City, Jan-
uary 7, 1905, and was the daughter of Henry
Brevoort and Bridget Seeley (see Brevoort.)
Children: i. George Henry, born at Lenox,
Massachusetts, September 17, 1858, died at
Paris, France. May 8, 1881 ; unmarried. 2.
Frederic Augustus, see forward. 3. Henry
Brevoort. born at Flushing, Long Island, Au-
gust I, 1863. died at Naples, Italy, March 8,
188 1 ; unmarried. 4. Alice Brevoort. born at
Flushing. Long Island, September 18. 1865;
married at New York City, April 16, 1884. to
Robert Maclay Bull ; died in New York City,
November 30, 1912. Children: i. George
Henry, born at New York City, February 5,
1885. ii. Dorothy Maclay. born at New York
City. 5. William Brevoort, see forward. 6.
Meta Brevoort, born at New York City. Feb-
ruary 16, 1878; married at New York City,
November 17, 1903, William Creighton Peet.
7. Rockhill Brevoort, born at New York City,
February 10. 1880; married at Scarsdale. New
York. May 9, 1907, .'\nita Tone, who was
born December 15. 1880. and was the daugh-
ter of Bernard Tone and Catherine Warnick.

(\TI) Frederic Augustus (2). son of Hon.
Frederic Augustus (i) and Sarah (Brevoort)
Potts, was born at Lenox, Massachusetts. July
2. 1860. He was educated at Columbia Uni-
versity, where he graduated with the class of
1880, and also took a course in the University




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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 84 of 95)