Edward Manning] [Ruttenber.

Historical sketch [of Newburgh, N.Y.] online

. (page 3 of 5)
Online LibraryEdward Manning] [RuttenberHistorical sketch [of Newburgh, N.Y.] → online text (page 3 of 5)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

and Glasses. A parcel of excellent Coarse
and Fine Linens, purchased for cash in Ireland
at the best markets. Muslins and Callicoes;
Plain and printed Handkerchiefs; Nankeens;
Bandanas and Humhums; Cassimcrc and Vest
Patems; Buttons, Silk and Twist; Tapes, Nee-
dles, Pins and Thread; with many other articles
too tedious to mention.

Newburgh, May 7, '99.

The principal merchants in addition to Hug^h Walsh
and John McAuley, prior to and including the year 1800,
were William Seymour, Leonard Carpenter, John An-
derson, Cooper & Son, George Gardner, James Hamil-
ton, James Burns, Robert Gourlay, Robert Gardiner,
George Monell. Robert W. Jones, Denniston & Aber-
crombie. Wm. W. Sackett, Alexander Falls, John Shaw,
and John Brown. Mr. Seymour's store was on the
north-cast corner of Water and Fourth streets. John



Anderson, Jr., was his successor in 1804. John Ander-
son, Sr., occupied a small store on the south side cf
Third street, about seventy-five feet from Water street,
where his dock was located. Robert Ludlow, the father
of the late Mrs. Thomas Powell, bought the corner
above him and built a store which Alexander Falls and
Jonathan Hedges subsequently hired for a short time.
Robert W. Jones succeeded them, and gave place to
Jacob and Thomas Powell, The latter gentlemen came
here in 1799, and soon after commenced business in con-
nection with Benjamin Case, Jr., (Thomas Powell's
brother-in-law), who announced (1802) that in his ab-
sence as master of the sloop Montgomery, strict attention
would " be paid to the store and dock, by J. & T, Powell."
The Powells continued in business on the south-east cor-
ner of Water and Third street until 18 14, when they sold
to Selah Reeve and William H. Falls. James Hamilton's
store stood on the site now occupied by the Quassaick
National Bank. Robert Cooper & Son were the suc-
cessors of Leonard Carpenter in a building just south of
Carpenter street, and James Burns had his store where
the Colonnade Row now stands — the dock and store-
house of Jacob and Leonard Carpenter being immedi-
ately in the rear.

There are a few landmarks from which the locations of
most of the stores can be very nearly accurately ascer-
tained. Of these marks one was the Newburgh coffee-
house of Robert Gardiner, and the other the printing
office of David Denniston. The latter stood on lot No.
5 of the Township of Washington, and its north line was
just fifty feet south of Third street (east side of Water).
Robert Gardiner's store was on the south-west corner of
Water and Fourth streets, where he commenced business
about 1795. He had previously been employed as a
clerk by William Seymour, John McAuley, and John
Anderson. His business was a singular combination of
dry goods, groceries, liquors, notions, etc., in one depart-


mcnt, and in the other ci cofl'ec-housc in which the retail
sale «>f malt litjimrs was hrst introduced. Mis j)lace ol
business is described, in 1800, as "an elej^ant well built
three-story house, and another adjoininp^ it, known by
the name of the coflee-room and the coflfee-house, with a
commodious kitchen round the corner, a gt)od well ol
water with a pump before the front door, situated on the
corner of Water street and Fourth street, opposite to the
public ferry." It became a place as well known as the
othce of Denniston's newspaper, and quite a number of
merchants g^ave their locations as so far from, or opj>osite
to — as the case mi^ht be — one or the other.

George Gardner, while he had a store-house on his
dock at the foot of F'irst street, kept his regular store in
Colden street, on the west side, a short distance south
of First street. He was in business for at least thirty
years prior to his death in 1822. Jason Rogers had
his store in Water street, " between the coffee-house and
Howell's tavern," — Wallace cSl Moore occupied it in
1800. Denniston & Abercrombie were located "oppo-
site to Uavid Denniston's printing office, next door to
Alexander Falls." The firm dissolved in 1800, and Aber-
crombie took the store of Leonard Carpenter, then
recently occupied by Robert Cooper & Son. John
Gay nor, from New Windsor, opened in 1800 "a store
in the late Henry Watts' new house, Water street, oppo-
site 'Squire Gardner's dock." He refused to give credit
to his customers, and did not continue in business any
considerable time.

One of the most noted stores of the periled immedi-
ately preceding the close of the century, was that of
John Brown, an Irish refugee of the rebellion of 1798,
who located, on his arrival in America, in a building
which had been kept as a tavern by Edward Howell
(previous to the removal of the latter to the present site
of the Orange Hotel), where he opened what he called
an " Universal Store," and such it was for many years —



a curious repository indeed, where might be found
ahuost any article, from a mouse-trap to the finest dress
goods. His sons, John and James S. Brown, were his
successors, and the store which he erected is now occu-
pied by Charles J. Lawson. His first advertisement
reads :

Universal Store,

In the house formerly occupied by Edward
Howell, Water street, Newburgh.
ESPECTFULLY informs the public that
. he has juft received (in addition to his
former assortment) a neat and fashionable vari-
ety of


suitable to the season; among which are a beau-
tiful assortment of tamboured, laped, Japaned
and plain Book and Jaconet Muslins, &c., with
a general collection of Hardware, Jewelry,
Iron?nongery, Nails, and Hollow Ware; Look-
ing Glasses, Window Glass, Faints, and Oils;
China, Glass, Delft, Bristol and Stone Ware:
Bibles, School Books, Novels, Plays and Histo-
ries; liocior Owen^s Prophetical Sermon; like-
wise a fresh supply of


Wines, Cherry Brandy, Gin and Spirits; aquan-
' tity of excellent Corn; a few barrels of Shad,

warranted well cured; with a great variety of
articles too tedious to enumerate. To prevent
trouble no second price will be asked. Brown
returns his sincere thanks to the public for the
great encouragement he has received since his
commencement in business; as his goods are
purchased for ready money, he is determined
to sell at a very small profit for cash or mer-
chantable country produce.
July i6, '99.

N. B. Account Books ruled or plain, bound
in any pattern or size, on the shortefl notice —
old books carefully rebound.

There were a few merchants whose business was of
a more specific character. George Gordon, Ebenezer
B. Ayres, and Joseph Reeve, were dealers in clocks,
watches, etc.; Selah Reeve had a crockery store " in
Mrs. Howell's house, next to David Denniston's," (a
building which occupied the site of John Lawson &
Son's store); John D. Lawson kept " soal and upper


leather, boot Ic^s and calf skins, saddles, bridles and
harness" in a store described as next door to the coffee-
house, being a building "twenty-eight feet front, two
stories high, four rooms with tire-places, three bedrooms,
a large kitchen with an oven, a cellar, and cistern for
rain-water;" and Davis & Hedges (,1797; had a drug
store in the building afterwards occupied by Jonathan
Carter. Thev subsequently (1799) removed to Colden
street. Some of these branches will be noticed in
another connection.

It has already been remarked that a very considerable
iniiiil)er of the old merchants were connected with the

}•« )k\V.\kI>IN(; BUSINESS.

This is especially true of Hugh Walsh, John Anderson
and John Anderson. Jr., Benjamin Case, Jr., Jacob and
Thomas Powell, Jacob and Leonard Carpenter, and
George Gardner. The trade was conducted by sloops
prior to 1830, when the first steamer, the Baltimore,
was purchased by Christopher Reeve. Advertisements
for 1798 state that Caleb Coffin, master, "will con-
tinue to sail Capt. George Gardner's sloop." How
long Capt. Gardner had been in the business does not
appear. The same year John Anderson, master, sailed
the sloop Eliza, which vessel had " large accommoda-
tions for passengers;" and Derick Amerman, master,
sailed Hugh Walsh's sloop, the Ceres, which onlv had
" verv good accommodations for passengers." In 1799
the same sloops were continued, with the addition of
the Favorite, Alexander Falls and Jonathan Hedges
owners, and Benj. Case, Jr., master, who announced
that they had " taken the large and commodious store
and dock, the property of Mrs. Ludlow." This store
and dock was on the south-east corner of Water and
Third street, and was afterwards known as Powell's
dock and Reeve's dock. Hugh Walsh was the founder
of the store and business known for many years as


Crawford's; and Jacob and Leonard Carpenter were
the first occupants of the property now embraced in
the establishment of Homer Ramsdell & Co. In 1800
George Gardner sailed the sloop Senator Burr, Edward
Griswold, master; and the sloop Vice President, Smith
Havens, master; Caleb Coffin sailed from "Leonard
Carpenter's wharf, below James Burns' store," the sloop
Behidere, and Leonard Carpenter paid attention to the
business at the store and dock; Benj. Case, Jr., con-
tinued the Favorite, and Alexander Falls attended the
store and dock ; John Anderson continued the sloop
Eliza; Hugh Walsh and Benjamin Sears sailed the Ceres,
Samuel Hawkins, master; and Derick Amerman sailed
the Washington — the whole constituting a fleet of seven
sloops. The form of announcement of the sloop lines
appears from the following advertisement :

for nev^ york.

The New Sloop


Benjamin Case, yun., Master,

Will sail from Powell's dock, on the following

Saturdays, wind and weather permitting, viz :

Saturday, March, 20
April, 3, 17
May, I, 15, 29
June 12, 26
July 10, 24

Saturday, August, 7, 21
September, 4, 18
October 2, 16, 30
November 13, 27
December 11, 25
The subscriber is thankful for past favors from
the public, and will endeavor to give general

Strict attention will be paid to the store
and dock, in the absence of the subscriber, by
J. & T. Powell. Benjamin Case, Jun.

Newburgh, February 17, 1802.

The Baltimore, the first steamer in the trade, was fol-
lowed by the William Young, the Legislator, the Provi-
dence, the Washington, the James Madison, the Highlander,
and the Thomas Powell ; all were subsequently succeeded
by barges, while the several and at times numerous firms
of the past are now consolidated in the single establish-
ment of Homer Ramsdell & Co., whose carrying trade


exceeds that of anv other period, although essentially
chaiiL^ed in the clcnjcnts of which it is composed.
The *^Io()ps ran in connection with the
and announced the tact as " Tuesday and I-Vidays
Staj^^i," or other days as the case mii^ht he. One of the
earliest of the staj^c lines was called the " Newburj^h
and Goshen Mercury." and ran between Newbur^h and
(ioshcn by the route of Monti^onierv. leavin«^ Newburgh
on Monday and Thursday, and returning on Tuesdav
and Friday. Fourteen pounds of baggage was allowed
free, and all above that weight '* in proportion to the
weight of the passenger at 140 pounds." A passenger
weighing over 140 was required to pay extra. The
contrast with the jiresent modes of convevance. and
the time required, will suggest itself. Now one may
visit the nmst distant point in the county and return
in the course of ten hours.

were of course as necessary an evil a hundred years ago
as now. and they were neither few nor far between.
The most noted in the village, prior to, during and for
some years after the Kevolution, was one kcjit by Martin
Weigand, who had, in i/(^>7, the only one in the place,
and paid therefor "three pounds for the excise, whereas
all the retailers together in the place when they were
permitted did not pay more than two pounds." Joseph
Albertson was Weigand's contemporary, and is s;iid t«)
have " kept a very good and orderly house." a character
which even Weigand's lost during the Revolution, when
it is described as being "filled with soldiers, with drunk-
enness, despair and blasphemy." During the war .\dolph
DeCirove built a hotel on the south-west corner of Water
and Third streets, the first " under the hill." Benj. Case
subsequently built one on the south-east corner of Water
and Fourth ; and Edward Howell on Water street near



Second. The latter gave up his place to stores, and put
up a hotel where the Orange Hotel now stands — a frame
building two stories high. At a later period the Mansion
House was made out of Hugh Walsh's store on the op-
posite side of the street, and ran until 1832 or '33. In
the meantime Howell's tavern gave place to the Orange
Hotel, and the United States Hotel followed in 1833. A
famous old tavern was kept for many years by Thomas
Gardner on Golden street — called the " Stone Tavern" —
another on the north end of Smith street, kept by Fran
cis Brewster; another on South street, near Grand,
called the Blue-Bell Tavern ; and another on the north-
west corner of Western Avenue and Golden streets ; the
dates of their establishment, or that of the Glinton Hotel
in Golden street, is not definitely known. The " Stone
Tavern," by the way, was the birth-place of General
Gardner of Port Hudson fame.

The first carpenter, the first blacksmith, the first wea-
ver, and the first stocking-maker, came to Newburgh
with the Palatine immigrants of 1709. Their successors
and those who were engaged in other mechanical pur-
suits prior to about the commencement of the present
century, have no other than traditionary record. Be-
yond that of carpenters, blacksmiths, and a few other
trades, however, the number of mechanics was limited.
As already stated. Great Britain would not permit the
colonists to engage in manufacturing to any extent ;
whatever the settlers required they were obliged to
import or supply by domestic substitutes. The wives
and daughters spun the yarn and the flax, wove and
colored the cloth and made the clothing; the leach-tub
was more familiar in the door-3'ard than the rose bush,
and, with the refuse fats of the tables, furnished the
soaps; candles were also the product of the household.
Shoes were wrought by shoemakers who visited the


houses of their customers. The farmer made his own
sleds and carts, and in most cases was the architect and
the builder of his own d wellinj^ and outhouses. F'assing
this era and considt*rin^ that by which it was succeeded,
we have, since 1795. an approximately correct record of
the introduction of mechanical industries.*

John Harris had the hrst sho() tor the manufacture
and sale of hats. He rented the old 13irdsall house
(adjoining- the whalintj coinj)anv*s storehouse on the
north) in 1795 ; his shop was in the basement on the east
side, which then fronted the thoroug^hfare leading to the
dock. Jonathan Rutler was the next, in 1801. Harris
sold his business iiSio) to Minard Harris and David
Sands, who continued it for several years. It then passed
to David Sands, who mav be claimed as the founder of
the more modern order of hat stores; in 1S30 he was
selling "vSvmm's splendid satin beaver hats for five dol-
lars, and a beautiful hat at four dollars." David M. H.
Sands continued the business of his father for some
years. While hat stores are now abundant, but one
practical hatter remains.

Shoemaking passed from Richard Rikcinan and Jos.
Albcrtson, in the days af the Revolution, to Welch &
Pierson (Henry Welch and Caleb Pierson) in 1798.
Their shop is described as being "in the shop formcrlv
occupied bv Phineas June, a tew doors from the New-
burgh Coffee-house and nearly opposite B. Case's tav-
ern,"' and was the first in which shoes were kept r

1 3 5

Online LibraryEdward Manning] [RuttenberHistorical sketch [of Newburgh, N.Y.] → online text (page 3 of 5)