James H. (James Hadden) Smith.

History of Duchess county, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers online

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Online LibraryJames H. (James Hadden) SmithHistory of Duchess county, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers → online text (page 40 of 125)
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business here twenty years ; Jacob Pfeiffer, bakery,
established in 1873 ; C. W. Coons, (born in Gal-
latin, N. Y., 1853,) merchant tailor, in business
here three years ; Clarence W. Lasher, (born in
Tivoli, 1852,) harnesses and horsemen's goods, in
business two years; Peter Feroe, (born in Red
Hook, 1818,) furnishing undertaker, in business
ten years ; Henry Fraleigh, boots and shoes ; Au-
gustus Moore, (born in Red Hook, 1839,) general
merchandise, in business here nineteen years;
William Rockefeller, (born in New York, 1844,)
fancy notions, in business thirteen years ; Charles
C. Champlin, general tinware.

The postoffice was established here in Decem-
ber, i86r, with Charles C. Champlin as postmaster,
which office he has since held.

The following are the only manufacturing in-
dustries : —

George H. Ellsworth, wagon maker, in business
here since 1827.

Steam box manufactory, Sylvester Teator, pro-
prietor, established in r 876.

Barrel factory, Clarence Feroe, proprietor, suc-
ceeding George Feroe & Son, who had conducted
the business twelve years. The factory was estab-
Ushed by Henry N. Leak some seventeen years
ago, who, in a few years gave up the business
which was resumed by Feroe & Son. The factory
turns out yearly from ten to twenty thousand fruit
barrels, besides its other work in tight cooperage.
Clarence Feroe was born in Madalin, January 28,

Saw, grist and plaster mill, George Feroe & Co.
(Montgomery Queen,) in business three years'
succeeding Cooper & Ham. '

This mill stands on the White Clay kill, and the
property in its vicinity was once owned by the
Schuyler family. The building which at one time
occupied the site of the present mill, was built
many years ago for a woolen factory, and for a
number of years was run by Robert Lasher as
lessee. A man of the name of Hubbell, also a
lessee, succeeded Lasher in the business. This
factory did a considerable business. About 1835
Nathan Parks purchased the property, and con-
verted the factory into a grist-mill, and removed
the dam from where it once stood to its present

location above the bridge. The mill afterwards
came into the possession of Henry Alkenburgh,
and was destroyed by fire. It is said that he
purchased the property of John K. Feroe in 1857,
and that the mill was biirned about twenty years
ago. After the lapse of some two or three years,
Alkenburgh built the present mill. Ozias Cooper
was the next proprietor, then James Gardner
bought from Cooper, then William Hann obtained
possession, and at his death the estate sold the
property to George Feroe.

This part of the village has also two hotels.
The Madalin House was built by Philip McNifF in
1839,* by whom it was first kept as a hotel. The

next proprietor was Amos Proctor. Mandeville

and Charles Hamlin also kept hotel in this build-
ing. The present proprietor is Peter Overbough,
who has conducted it since 1854.

The Morgan House was built for a store by
Erastus Kimball, in 1846, and was changed into a
hotel by Edward Lasher some ten years ago. The
present proprietor is Philip Potts, who purchased
of Lasher three years ago.

Lodge No. 374, F. and A. M., was organized
here July 8, 1855. The charter bears date July
6, 1855, and contains the following names as charter
officers : Rev. John A. Edmonds, Master ; Simon
VanNamee, S. W. ; Benj. F. Gedney, J. W
Charter members: Samuel Nelson, William
Whitting, N. P. Tyler. The lodge was incorpor-
ated m 1878. The first trustees were Jacob E
Fmgar, F. S. Ormsbee, P. H. Miller. The lodge
meets m the Elm House on Broadway and has, for
Its size, one of the most beautiful halls in the
county. This is the centennial year ( r 88 r ) of the
Order in the State, and Andrew Rockefeller has
the distmction of being in so memorable a year
the W. M. of this lodge.

In this part of the village is situated Trinity
church, and the celebrated Academy bearing its
name. This school was established primarily by
John Bard and General J. Watts de Peyster, in No-
vember, 1853, as a private school, to meet the wants
of Madahn-Tivoli, under the superintendence of
Rev. James Starr Clark. In the spring of 1854,
General de Peyster withdrew from the support of
the school, and Mr. Bard, with the consent of the
Rector of St. Paul's church. Rev. Heniy de Koven,
determmed to support a parish school and mission
to meet the educational and spiritual wants of the
village. In July, 1854, a brick building, two stories,
30 by 60, was begun, and was especia lly adapted

*John K. Feroe, builden ~ ' '



for the purpose mentioned. The building con-
tained a chapel and a vestry-room in the second
story, and two large school rooms, suitably fur-
nished, in the first story. On the first Sunday in
January, 1855, the chapel was first occupied.
School was opened on the following Monday with
seventy pupils and two efficient teachers, both
chapel and school being under the direction of
James Starr Clark.

The church began with two communicants, and
increased so that at the expiration of six years it
numbered seventy. The school and church were

This parish school continued until 1867. Mr.
Bard having signified his intention of withdrawing
his support, on account of Hmited means, Mr.
Clark determined to establish a boarding school, as
a means of support, and to carry out his education-
al ideas. The cottage in which he was then living
was enlarged to accommodate twelve pupils, and in
October, 1867, he opened his school with four
scholars. By the end of the first school year this
number had increased to ten, and by the end of the
second year the school was full to overflowing. In
1 87 1, the school then having fifteen pupils, and
many more applying for admission, the building
was enlarged to hold twenty-five. Other ad-
ditions were made from time to time, and in 1875
the building was enlarged, giving accommodations
to forty pupils in all. In 1879 a large portion of
the earlier structure was rebuilt, and a third story
added, at a cost of about $8,000.00. When com-
pleted, the building was 113 feet long, 42 wide and
three stories high. The school was soon filled to
its utmost capacity, and many applicants could not
be received. The number of pupils in 1881 was
sixty. The school has, in addition to the Rector,
a staff of five efficient teachers, and is conducted
on a modified military system. Pupils are here
fitted for entrance to the miUtary and scientific
schools of the country. A large and well appointed
gymnasium — 65 by 42 — including bowling alleys,
is located on the grounds, and on the Hudson are
two 40 foot gigs and two 30 foot barges for the
free use of the pupils.

Among the early physicians who located here,
after Myersville became a village of any extent,
was a Dr. Mixture — said to have been a most ap-
propriate name in every respect. He remained
but a short time. His successor was Dr. William
Bush, a most attentive practitioner, who became a
surgeon in the army during the Rebellion, and lost
his life in the discharge of his duty. He was suc-

ceeded by Dr. Thomas J. Barton, one of the pres-
ent practitioners, and one of the most remarkable
men, through his acquaintance with the EngUsh
classics, that is to be met with. He is the author of
some very respectable verses. Dr. Barton was born
in Valatie, Columbia county, N. Y., in 1830, grad-
uated from Albany Medical College in 1855,
and in 1856 came to this place, where, for twenty-
five years, he has had an extensive practice.

Other physicians who have practiced here, for
brief intervals, were Drs. McMenamy, George
deary, Watts, and Baldwin.

The only other resident physician is Dr. Lester
Cass Baldwin, born in Jewett, Greene county, N.Y.,
December 14, 1850; graduated from the Medical
Department, University City of New York in 1879,
in which year he came to Tivoli.

The representatives of the law are Zachariah
Weeks and Frank S. Ormsbee. The former was
born in Copake, Columbia county, N. Y., in 1829;
studied law with George S. Gorham, Burlington
Green, Otsego county, N. Y., was admitted to the
bar in July, 1851, and became a resident of Red
Hook in May, 1853.

Frank Stanley Ormsbee was born in the town of
Ashland, Greene county, N. Y., in June, 1843,
studied law with Olney and Mott in Catskill, in
1862-63, and went to University of Albany, from
whence he graduated in 1864. He was admitted
to practice in that year, and came to Tivoli in the
spring of 1868.*

Tivoli has five churches, the Baptist, Methodist,
Roman' Catholic, St. Paul's and Trinity, the latter
being mentioned in connection with Trinity

The Baptist Church was formally organized in
1842. Previous to the year 1839 but few Baptist,
ministers had ever preached in this town and there
were in the town but few families of that denomi-
nation, who belonged to churches in Sanford and
Saugerties. Among these famiUes were those of
the Wakemans and Beekworths, or Beckwiths (Col.
Nathan Beck with). In 1839 Rev. Thomas Stokes,
for several years Bishop of the Baptist church in
Cairo, Greene county, was employed by the Mis-
sionary Board of the Duchess Baptist Association
to preach in different parts of the county. In this
service he continued some eighteen months, preach-
ing with much success in Pawling, Hartsville,
Rhinebeck and Mechanicsville, now Madalin.

He was succeeded by Rev. David James, of New-
burgh, who labored for the board one year. Both

* Supervisor in 1881.



of these Elders preached in the school house at
Madalin. An effort was made to build a Union
meeting-house, but it did not succeed. A few
families in Madalin and at the Landing were friend-
ly to this denomination, and treated the Baptist
missionaries with much kindness and hospitality.

In the spring of 1842 Rev. Isaac Bevans settled
at Rhinebeck, and succeeded the Elders mentioned,
in preaching at Mechanicsville. In the same
spring B. S. Pier, who, with his wife, was a mem-
ber of the Cannon St. Baptist Church, New York,
moved with his family to the upper village where
he opened a store. They were generous friends to
the cause in this town. Some time in the fall of
1842 it was decided to organize into a conference,
preparatory to a church organization, all the people
of Baptist proclivities who could be called together.
This conference was held at the house of Edwin
Knickerbocker, and Lewis Beckwith was chosen
clerk. There were eight persons present; viz: —
N. Beckwith and wife, B. S. Pier and wife, L. Beck-
with and wife, Hanford and wife.

In the last of fall it was decided to begin preach-
ing at the Landing. J. S. & S. .CoUyer, the pro-
prietors of one of the docks, had an old store which
was not occupied, and which they kindly offered to
the Baptists as a place in which to hold services.
This store was fitted up with coarse boards for
seats, and the first sermon here was preached by
Rev. Mr. Bevans, on Sunday evening, November
20, 1842. Here a series of meetings were begun
by Mr. Bevans on January 2 2d, 1843, which
were held every evening, with few exceptions, until
the first of March, in which Mr. Bevans was assisted
by Revs. N. D. Benedict and C. Shook. The
result was the conversion of between sixty and sev-
enty persons, and thirty-six were baptized. The
first baptism was administered February 26th to
nine individuals. The congregation rapidly in-
creasing, an effort was soon put forth to erect a
church building, which, after some delay, was ac-
complished, and a house, 34 by 40, was erected
on land given (conditionally)* by E. Elmendorph.

This building was located between the landing
and Madalin.t Members of the church and con-
gregation contributed liberally toward this object,
and some friends in other places, and a few not of
their communion, also very generously assisted.
William Kelly, of Rhinebeck, gave $100.00. The

*The conditions were that the property was to remain in the posses-
sion of the denomination so long as the Baptists remained there ; but
should they remove, the property was to revert to the heirs of Mr. Elmen-

t The old building is still standing at the forks of the road.

church was dedicated Thursday, February 14,
1844, by Rev. T. G. Freeman, of Hudson, and
Rev. I. B. Breed. The house was built by Cor-
nelius Patterson, at a cost of $830.00. In October,
1843, the church united with the Duchess Baptist
Association, and reported 36 baptized, 4 received
by letter, 2 dismissed by letter — total, 38.

Rev. Mr. Bevans remained as pastor from the
organization in 1842 to April, 1848. His suc-
cessors were Rev. Henry Cornell, Sept. 9, 1848,
who remained until August, 1849; Elder Lyman
Palmer, September, 1849, supplied the pulpit
about three months; Elder David Morris, De-
cember, 1849, remained until January, 1852, but
preached occasionally during that winter; Elder
Parmenus Watts, a licentiate, April, 1852,
to June, 1854, he was ordained June 2,
1853 ; Elder Albert Griffith, a Ucentiate from
Lewisburg University, September, 1854, was en-
gaged for six months, and closed his labors in
May, 1855; Elder Vassar, September i, 1855,
six months; Elder Edward Tompkins, a licen-
tiate from Hyde Park, July 15, 1856, was or-
dained December 9, 1857, and remained till May,
i860; Elder John W. Crumb, May 18, i860, to
February, 1862, returned in 1863, and preached
until 1869; Elder Green came about June 5,
1869, remained a year ; Elder Joshua Wood, No-
vember 5, 187 1; Elder Edward Tompkins cUme
as a supply in 1875, which relation he sustained
until February, 1876 ; his successor was Rev.
Jacob L. Williams, the present incumbent, a Ucen-
tiate of Saugerties Baptist Church. He began his
labors in March, 1876, and was ordained in April
of that year.

The present church edifice was begun in 1880
and completed in the spring of 1 881, at a cost of
$5,000.00. It was dedicated Mw 11, 1881. The
present membership of the churck is 85.

The Society of Methodists was organized some
little time previous to 1842, but the membership
was not large, and the society belonged to the
Lower Red Hook charge. Among the early
members were, George Gleason, Jacob Van
Steenburgh and wife, James Kent and wife, and
R. Gleason. The oldest members living to-
day are Mrs. Lowe, Mrs. John Feroe,
and Mrs. Van Steenburgh. Among the early
pastors were Revs. Mr. Gray, Mr. Sing, E. 0.
Haven, Mr. Burch and Mr. Daniels. Having
been on the Lower Red Hook charge, it*is to be
presumed that the pastors who officiated there also
preached here.



The first church edifice was built in 1843, on
land given by Eugene Livingston. This in years
becoming too small, was sold, and the present
edifice was erected about i860. The society is
now on the Germantown charge, presided over by
Rev. Aaron Hunt. The present membership is
between twenty and thirty. The society has num-
bered over one hundred members, but from various
causes has decreased to its present low status.

St Paul's Church — St. Paul's Episcopal Church
is situated in the extreme N. W. corner of Red
Hook (the N. W. town of Duchess county.) The
first entry in connection with it, to be found in the
records, bears date in December, 1816.

This church was incorporated agreeably to
an Act of Legislature, State of New York,
1817, and was admitted into the Union of
the Protestant Episcopal Church, October
2ist, same year. Rev. Henry Anthon, then
Deacon, afterwards Rector of St. Mark's,
New York city, — was the first minister, hav-
ing commenced his services in the neighbor-
hood of Upper Red Hook Landing — now
Tivoli— in December, 1816. The first bap-
tism noted was that of Mary Kimball, and
the first burial, Joseph Kimball, occurred in
December, 18 16.

On the 7th of July, 1818, the corner-stone
of the first church building was laid in a lot
on the N. W. corner of the main road run-
ning east from Tivoli to Upper Red Hook
and the Germantown or Telegraph, then
known as the River road, crossing the former
at right-angles. The unpretending struct-
ure was of wood, and was known as the
"White Church," in contra:distinction to the
Dutch Reformed Church, less than a mile
farther to the north, on the same road, which
was the oldest place of worship in the town,
and recognized far and near as the "Red
Church," from its color.

On the 27th of May, 1819, St. Paul's was
consecrated by Bishop Hobart, and was the
second Episcopal congregation organized in
Duchess county; that of St. James, at Hyde
Park, being the first.

The first Wardens were Edward P. Living-
ston, Lieutenant-Governor, State of New
Yorkj 1831-32, and John S. Livingston, who had
been First Judge of Columbia county.

After a zealous discharge of his duties for three
years, Mr. Anthon was succeeded in his charge by
the following gentlemen, several of whom rose to

high dignities or prominent positions : — Rev.
Nathaniel T. Bruce, M. D., 1820-24; Rev. Will-
iam Sheldon, 1824- ; Rev. Cicero S. Hawks,
D. D., subsequently Bishop of Missouri ; Rev.
Revaud Kearny; Rev. John McCarty, D. D.,
afterwards Chaplain U. S. A., with General
Scott, who held the first Protestant services in the
capital of Mexico, and preached the first Evangel-
ical sermon in the cathedral of that city ; Rev.
John Henry Hobart, son of the bishop of the same
name ; Rev. Henry de Koven, Rev. R. O. Page
and Rev. G. Lewis Piatt, A. M. The latter is
still Rector, having officiated twenty-two years.
The Rev. Messrs. E. A. Nichols, Adams, Bartlett


and Punderson also at different times have had
temporary charge of the church, but not as


The original site was selected on account of its
central position as to the congregation, who were



scattered along the river and River road, north
and south, for a distance of over sixteen miles.
The building of several other Episcopal churches
r— three in this town and one in Clermont,
Columbia county, — having drawn off a number of
members, it was determined to sell the old and
build a new church. The change was not satis-
factory to all, because the grounds had been fenced
and improved by one member, and a Free School
had been erected by several, in union ; the latter
finally fell into the hands of General de Peyster,
as sole Trustee, in which about fifty scholars were
educated by him at one time, many of whom did
great credit to the institution.

On June t6th, 1868, the corner-stone of the new
Church of St. Paul's was laid with impressive
services, and an apjiropriate address was dehvered
by the Rector, Rev. G. Lewis Piatt, A. M.

The site is beautiful, on the new River road, about
a quarter of a mile north of the main road from
Tivoli station to Madalin village. The grounds
originally contained two acres, of which one and a
half were deeded as his subscription to the church
by Mr. E. A. Livingston, and half an acre by
General de Peyster as a part of his subscription.
The latter gentlem.an subsequently added another
acre to the west, and two acres mor« were purchas-
ed by the congregation to the south. The greater
part of the land is handsomely disposed and thickly
set with noble trees. The total cost of the struc-
ture, including the organ and all complete for
consecration, according to one statement was

St. Paul's is a building of rough stone, roofed
with slate, about 92 feet long and 57 feet wide
outside of all, with a spacious chancel to the rear,
and a tower and spire at the northeast corner 90
feet high, partly stone and partly timber, sur-
mounted by a large gilt cross. The windows are
partly of ground and partly of stained glass, be-
tween buttresses. There is a semi-hexagonal pro-
jection or transept to the south, whose interior
constitutes the spacious pews of Johnston Living-
ston, Esq., and General de Peyster. The style of
architecture is pure original English- or Norman-
Gothic, and now that it is almost entirely over-
grown with five-leaved or American Ivy, popularly
known as the Virginia Creeper— planted for the
most part with her own hands and fostered with
eare by Mrs. General de Peyster— there is scarcely
a church to be seen anywhere throughout the
tend which presents a prettier picture. It faces
the east and stands on an artificial esplanade. On

this account and through the judgment exhibited
in taking advantage of the natural disposition of
the ground, and moreover, from its resting, as it
were, upon a long row of substantial vaults in the
rear that seem to constitute a portion of the
foundation of the edifice, — the church, viewed
from the north-west, towers aloft with graceful
outline amid the tall, original trees, as if constructed
upon an elevated plateau. From every point of
view the effect is imposing, and the edifice worthy
to rank with many of the religious structures in
Europe which are deemed worthy of especial
mention in guide books. Thence, from the es-
planade, in every direction, the eye of a
visitor rests on beautiful or pleasing scenery,
and to the westward he enjoys a magnificent pros-
pect of the whole range of the Catskills.

The grading around the church was done under
the personal superintendence of General de Peyster,
and at the expense of Mr. Johnston Livingston
and himself. For this a handsome "Resolution of
Thanks " was voted and presented by the Vestry.

Very peculiar arrangements have been entered
into by the original subscribers for the protection
for all time of their burial-places, so that this
" God's acre " is less liable to probable or possible
desecration or vandalism than any other in the
country. Even the style of monuments is under
the safeguard of a committee, and the jurisdiction
of the Vestry is restricted to th& church. itself and
a space of only a few feet outside of the walls of it.

As the grounds are new, the monuments are, as
yet, few. One of these, quite imposing from its
situation and surroundings, of a peculiarly hard
grey marble which seems calculated to last forever,
bears the name of John Watts on the east base,
and John Watts de Peyster on the west base
and the following inscription on* two faces, east
and north : —

In memory of John Watts, born in the
city of New York, 27th of August, 1749 (Old
Style), and died there 3rd (6th) Sept., 1836 (New
Style): (3d Son of Hon. John Watts, Senior
Member King's Council, and destined Lt. Gov.
Province of New York, and of Anne, eldest
daughter of Etienne (Stephen) de Lancey,) Last
Royal Recorder, City of New York, 1774-77 ;
Speaker of Assembly, S. N. Y., 1791-94; Mem-
ber of Congress, U. S., 1793-95; First Judge of
Westchester Co., N. Y., 1806 ; &c., &c., &c.
Founder and endower of the Leake & Watts
Orphan House, New York City. "Vir ^^quan-

In Memory of Mary Justina Watts, youngest
Child and Daughter of Hon. John Watts, 2d ; and
of Jane, — [the latter] Daughter of Peter de Lan-



cey, " of the Mills," Westchester Co., N. Y., and
[of] Elizabeth Colden, Daughter of Cadwallader
Golden, Royal Lt. Gov. and Acting Gov. Province
N. Y. Born in New York City, 26th Oct., 1801,
and died there 28th of July, 1821.

The west and south sides of the plinth have no

Westward of this is a large and extremely tasty
marble memorial of a young and handsome Union
officer, who died of the ultimate results of exposure
and disease contracted during the Peninsular Cam-
paign of 1862. On the obverse
are a few lines, setting forth his
name, rank, etc., as follows : —

Frederic de Peyster; Jr.,
Brevet Colonel, N. Y. V., Brevet
Major, U. S. V. Born in New
York City, 13th December,
1842, Died at Rose Hill, in
the Township of Red Hook,
Duchess Co., 30th October,
1874, of diseases contracted in
the field, with the Army of
North-eastern Virginia in i86t,
and with the Army of the
Potomac in 1862.

The reverse indicates where
his remains have found their
last resting-place, as follows : —

" ( Fourth Corps Badge,
Second Division, A. of the P.)
The remains lie in his father's
vault, west of the church."

As he discharged both line
and staff, or medical duty, in
one of the New York regiments
which was considered as be-
longing to the artillery, a ten-
pounder Parrot gun which had
performed service in putting
down the "Slave-holders' Re-
bellion," is planted at the cor-
ner of this monumental plot,
which is guarded from intrusion
by an apparently simple but costly fence of strong
wrought iron standards set in blocks of stone con-

Online LibraryJames H. (James Hadden) SmithHistory of Duchess county, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers → online text (page 40 of 125)