John Phillips Downs.

History of Chautauqua County, New York, and its people (Volume 3) online

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<Mi Eljcr .Sherman, son of Hon. Pliilip Sherman, was
iK.rn in 1634, and died in North Kingston, Washington
coimty, R. I., in i'r/>. He and bis wife Mary were the
par<^M of -levcn children.

(III) Rhcr <2) Sherman, son of Ebcr (i) Slurman,
was born in .Vorth Kingston, R. I. He married, about
^7'^/'^ Martha Remington, l»orn in 1683, daiu^htcr of
John and .Abigail f Davis) Remington.

(IV) H^nry Sherman, son ol Ebcr (2) Sherman, was
bom Jan. 14, 1724. He married, in 1747, Ann Higgin-



botham. born 1730, daughter of Charles and Mary Hig-
ginbotham, of Cranston, R. I.

(V) Captain Henry (2) Sherman, son of Henry (i)
Sherman, was born at South Kingston, R. I., March 31,
1750. He was a minute-man at the battles of Lexington
and Bunker Hill, and served throughout the Revolution.
In 1777 he was commissioned ensign in Colonel Sher-
burne's regiment, was later taken prisoner by the Brit-
ish at Paramus. five miles north of Paterson, N. J., and
in 1781 was returned to duty in an exchange of pris-
oners. He became a lieutenant in Colonel Green's
Rhode Island rc.giment, and was honorably discharged,
June 15. 1783, with the rank of captain. He was granted
a pension, April 13, 1813. He died at South Kingston,
June 7, 1830. He married Mary Elizabeth Gardiner, of
Kingston, R. I. Mary Gardiner, their daughter, born
1791, married Samuel Slocum. (See Slocum VI.).



FRANCIS D. STEELED— This branch of the Steele
family, well known in Jamestown and in the county gen-
erally, traces descent from Rudolph Stable, a native of
Switzerland, of German antecedents. Rudolph Stable
came to New York State at tlie age of twenty-one, and
was a resident of Livingston Alanor on the Upper Hud-
son, in 1711, when he responded to a call for volunteers
to march against the French and Indians. From Liv-
ingston Manor he moved to Schoharie county, and
thence to the Upper Mohawk Valley, where he was
granted large tracts of land. He owned considerable
land at German Flats, in 1755, his property being known
as the "Rudolpli Staley Patent" as it is to this day.
Stnhles were foremost in the early history of that sec-
tion of the Mohawk Valley, and in course of time the
name became anglicised as Steele. The children of
Rudolph Stable that can be traced are three sons: Die-
tcrich, Adam, and Rudolph (2); and two daughters:
Elizabeth, and Barbara. The sons all fought in the
French and Indian War.

Dieterich Stable, the eldest son, and his wife, Mar-
garctta, were the parents of a son, George, of whom
further.

George Stable, son of Dieterich and Margaretta
.Stable, was a soldier of the Revolution. He tnarried
Dorothea Schumacher. They were the parents of four
children: Elizabeth, born in 1777. married Jacob Totts;
Adam, born March i, 1779; Rudolph, born Aug. 13,
i7!-'6, anrl Maria Barbara, born May 11, 1788.

.Adam Stable, son of George and Dorotliea (.Schu-
macher) Stable, a soldier of the War of 1812, settled at
Sacket Harbor, N. Y. He married Elizabeth Dygert,
born April 3, 1783, daughter of Captain William Dyg-
ert, who served with General Herkimer at the battle of
'')riskany. They were the parents of seven children:
(jeorge, Dolly, William, Nancy, lubn Arlam, Iliram,
and .Abr.aham. In this generatii>n ihe name in this
branch licramc Steele.

John Adam Steele, .son of Adam and Elizabeth
(D.vKcrl) Stable, was born at Sacket Harbor, N. Y.,
.Aug. 14, 1K14, died in Jamestown, N. Y., Dec. 17, 1879.
He came to Heaver Dam, six miles from Corry, Pa.,
with his parents and bellied clear the farm upon which
they sclllcd. lie had few school ojiportunities, and
when a lad of biil foiirtrcn years be left home and




:^ti(ini 3). Steele




. I







iFmncis D. Steele




31anics UllilQon, Jiw




£0ana JL. SUltlson



BIOGRAPHICAL



413



walked to Jamestown, N. Y., where he obtained em-
ployment at fifty cents per day. His first work was dig-
ging a ditch, but he was used to hard work, and when
his employer, Mr. Barrows, inspected his first day's
work he was so gratified that he gave him a silver dol-
lar for his day's work instead of the half dollar prom-
ised. The lad did not remain in Jamestown, but re-
turned to the farm at Beaver Dam, near Corry, and
resumed work with his father and brothers at clear-
ing. Later he became very much discontented, and one
day while in the timber he intentionally broke his axe
and again left home and walked the distance between
Corry and Jamestown. This was in 1828, and from
that time until his death he was a resident of James-
town, N. Y.

He found employment in the sash and blind factory
owned by Levi C. Barrows, with whom he remained
several years. Although he came to Jamestown with only
a dollar of capital, he so thriftily managed his finances
that when opportunity offered to enter business for
himself he had the necessary capital. His first business
venture was as a partner with William Levi and James
Sprague in the foundry business. He continued a part-
ner in the Jamestown Foundry Company for thirty
years, then sold out his interest and purchased a tract
of land in Jamestown, North Side, containing 70 acres.
For ten j-ears he cultivated that tract, then for a short
time again entered the foundry business. He came into
possession of the same foundry he formerly had, and
after disposing of all the machinery, he converted the
building into grist mills, known as the Brooklyn Mills.
He operated that mill for a short time in association
with his son, but continued to reside on his farm, where
he died in 1879 and was buried in Lakeview Cemetery.
Mr. Steele was a member of the Presbyterian church,
a Republican, a man of enterprise and progress, and a
good citizen.

He married Hannah M. Chapman, born April 25,
181S, died July 5, 1878, who rests with her husband in
Lakeview Cemetery. Mr. and Mrs. John Adam Steele
were the parents of two children: Albert, born in 1845,
died 1858: Francis D., to whose memory this review
is dedicated.

Francis D. Steele, youngest son of John Adam and
Hannah M. (Chapman) Steele, was born in James-
town, N. Y., June 4, 1846, died in the city of his birth,
Nov. 3, 1907, and was buried in Lakeview Cemetery.
He was educated in private schools and in old James-
town Academy, and after completing his school years
entered business life as his father's associate in his
various business enterprises. When the Brooklyn Mills
were started, Francis D. took charge of their opera-
tion, and after the death of John Adam Steele continued
them for several years. He was also for a time inter-
ested with Dr. Martin in the ownership and opera-
tion of the steamer "May Martin" on Chautauqua Lake.
He was also largely interested in the development of
real estate, laying out the 70-acre tract on the South
West Side into building lots, upon which he built sev-
eral houses. His home was on Fenton avenue, James-
town, and there he died. Mr. Steele was a Republican
in politics, a member of the Fireman's .^ssociation for
seven years, and an attendant of the Methodist Epis-



copal church. He was devoted to his home and family,
and was Iiighly esteemed by his many friends.

Francis D. Steele married, Sept. 21, i86g, Ida M.
Wilson, daughter of James and Maria S. (Lydell) Wil-
son. (See Wilson line following). Mrs. Steele survives
her husband, a resident of Jamestown, residing on Church
street. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal
church, and a lady highly respected by all who know
her. Mr. and Mrs. Francis D. Steele were the par-
ents of two children: i. Harry A., born July 7, 1876,
now connected with the Art Metal Works, Syracuse,
N. Y.: he is a member of the Masonic order and of the
Independent Order of Odd Fellows. 2. Frances D.,
born Dec. 2. 1882, married William H. Miller, of Wil-
Hamsport, Pa., now residing in New York City.



LYDELL L. WILSON— A native son of Chautau-
qua, Lydell L. Wilson is of the family of Wilson who
came to Chautauqua from Pennsylvania. Mr. Wilson
has spent his business life in lumber manufacturing and
dealing and is one of the successful men of that busi-
ness.

The Wilson family herein reviewed is of Scotch an-
cestry, and the progenitor of the family was influenced
to leave his home in Scotland by his kinsman, James
Wilson, a signer of the Declaration of Independence.
This Mr. Wilson never reached the shores of America,
but died on the voyage and was buried at sea. His
widow landed with her children in Philadelphia, one of
her sons. James, being then fourteen years of age. Mrs.
Wilson was a woman of strong character and faced the
burdens of widowhood in a strange land with a courage
that never faltered. The boys of the family were ap-
prenticed to useful trades, but the girls she kept with her
until they married. In later years she married a sec-
ond husband, a Mr. Reese, of Warren, Pa.

James Wilson, their son, was born in Scotland, and
was fourteen years old when he landed in Philadel-
phia. He married, in 1809, Elizabeth Porter, a Quak-
eress, of English parentage.

They settled in Westmoreland county, Pa., and when
their second son, James (2), was an infant, the family
came on horseback to Chautauqua county, N. Y., each
parent with a child and a camping outfit on the horse
with them. They made camp their first night in Chau-
tauqua county, on the banks of Cassadaga creek, under
the shelter of clustering pines, and in the morning
awoke to find a light snow had fallen during the night.
James Wilson secured a grant of land in the town of
Ellicott, on the banks of the Chadakoin river, on the
north side of the State road, there cleared land and built
a house. He enlisted in the War of 1S12, as a private
in Captain John Silsbe's company. McMahan's regi-
ment. New York Militia, and on Dec. 30, 1S13, was
wounded at Black Rock. Several years later he was
granted a yearly pension of $48, which he drew until
his death. James Wilson was engaged in buying and
rafting pine shingles to Pittsburgh, piloting his own
rafts. He was a very religious man, an exhorter in the
Methodist Episcopal church and a good singer. He
was leader of the choir in the Methodist church at
Jamestown, now the Independent Congregational
Church. He was granted two quarter sections of land



414



CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY



for his war services and continued his activities in
farmincr and lumbering until his death in iS66. His
wife. Elizabeth (.Porter"! Wilson, was a true pioneer,
strong and most courageous. She endured the dan-
gers and privations of pioneer life and contributed
largely towards her husband's success in life. They
were the parents of five sons and four daughters, all of
whom lived to a good age and were among the re-
spected citizens of their community.

James Wilson. Jr.. son of James and Elizabeth (Por-
ter"! Wilson, was born in Westmoreland county, Pa., in
April. iSir. and died in Jamestown, N. Y., in Febru-
arj-. iSo.^ He was educated in the public schools of his
native county, and in early life engaged with his father
in the lumber business, also becoming an expert pilot
of lumber rafts. He joined with his father in the pur-
chase of timber lands in Indiana, converting the timber
into lumber in their own mill and freighting it to a
profitable market. He married. Xovcmber. 1841, Maria S.,
daughter of Luther and Betsey (MacConick) Lydell,
and granddaughter of Luther Lydell, Sr., who came from
England to America at the close of the Revolutionary
War. He married Asenath Bill, a niece of Ethan Allen,
who lived nearly to the end of her century of life, dying
in her one hundredth year. They were the parents of
four sons and two daughters, Luther, Jr., being their
youngest son. Luther Lydell. Jr., came to Chautauqua
county in 1832, and settled on a farm in the town of
Poland, where he engaged heavily in cattle raising. John
MacConick. grandfather of Maria S. Wilson, came with
his father. James MacConick, and brother, William Mac-
Conick, who served in the Revolutionary War. John
MacConick enlisted as a minute-man in Captain John
Nutting's company, Jan. i, 1776, and was assigned to Col-
onel Prescott's regiment, and Sept. 4, 1779, enlisted and
served for nine months in Captain Hugh Maxwell's
company. Colonel John Bailey's regiment. He served
throughout the entire war and participated in the bat-
tles of Harlem Heights, White Plains and Bunker Hill.
He drew a Revolutionary pension until 1S38. He mar-
ried -Abigail Hartson and lived in Exeter, Otsego county,
N. Y., where he died. His son, William, was also in the
battle of Bunker Hill. Children of James and Maria S.
(Lydell) Wil.son : l. Laura M., born Xov. 2, 1842, mar-
ried James Mc.-Xllister, 2. Lillian W., born Feb. 27, 1847,
married (first) Myron John Lyons, fsccond) Charles
Ralph Gibson. 3. Mary L., born June 8, 1850, married
Charles McAllister. 4. Ida M., born Aug. 21, 1852, mar-
ried Francis D. Steele (q. v.). $■ Jessie .M., born .May g,
1857. 0. Burton J., born ?%Iay 9, 1857, married Laura
Mcrz. 7. Lydell L., of whom further.

Lydell L. Wilson was born in the town of Poland,
Chautauqua county, N. Y., April S, 1859, son of James
and Maria (Lydell) Wilson. He grew to manhood at
the home f.irm. and obtained his education in the district
irh'i'i]. He '-arly became ijitircstcMJ in hnnbering, and
durinc his early manhood si>cnt two years in the Mich-
igan lumber woods. He was with the Hortson Mill for
two years, in Chaut."iuqu3 county, then leased a mill at
Moon Station, N. Y., operating it until its destruction
i/y fire in 1HH5. He then filled his orders through the
Hortson .Mill, but in 18W rebuilt his mill, and in 1888
erected a new mill at Moon Station. In i-'//> he moved
to the town of Gerry, and upon lands leased from Levi



Pratt erected 'The Wilson Mills," a modern saw mill
plant with an annual capacity of 15,000,000 feet of man-
ufactured lumber, most of which is shipped to James-
town and Buffalo. Mr. Wilson is a man of strong busi-
ness ability, is untiring in his industry, and through his
own efforts has won success in the business world. He
married, Nov. 10, 1S80, Anna Booth, daughter of James
Booth, of Buffalo. Mr. and Mrs. Wilson are the par-
ents of five children: Alice M., Mertie D., Willis L.,
Nellie S.. and Delbert, who died at camp during the late
war.



WILLIAM E. GOUCHER, D. D. S., of James-
town, well known dental surgeon, was prominently iden-
tified with his profession for a quarter of a century, be-
ing in active practice here until his retirement in 1920.
During those years he built up a large practice, and
when he retired from active connection with the profes-
sion he so long had graced, the news was received with
genuine regret. He came fairly by his professional in-
stincts, being a son of Dr. Curtis N. Goucher, a phy-
sician of Girard, Ohio, and later of Erie, Pa., where he
died in 1893. The elder Dr. Goucher was a leader in
his profession, a man of affairs, and held in high
esteem by all who knew him. He was a veteran of the
Civil War, giving four years to his country's service,
holding a medical commission.

Dr. William E. Goucher, son of Dr. Curtis N. and
Emily (Kincaid) Goucher, was born in Girard, Ohio,
March 29, 1872. He was educated in Corunna High
School, Orchard Lake Military Academy, and the Uni-
versity of Michigan, entering the dental department of
the last-named institution, whence he was graduated
D. D. S., class of 1894. After graduating he became
assistant to Dr. William Elgin, of Denver, Col., for six
months, then associated himself with Dr. Assay, of San
Jose, Cal., who was the secretary of the California State
Board of Dental Examiners. Dr. Goucher had entire
charge of Dr. Assay's practice while the latter served
the commonwealth as examiner.

In the spring of 1S96, Dr. Goucher came East,
locating in Jamestown, N. Y., and in the fall of that
year began practice in the Hall block at the corner of
Main and Third streets. During the following years
he built up a large practice, numbering among his
patients prominent people of the county and surround-
ing coimties of New York and Pennsylvania. Dr.
Goucher retired from practice in the spring of 1920,
feeling that he had justified himself in his profession,
and he also wished to devote more time to his business
interests, which are located in Oklahomo and Ken-
tucky. Dr. Goucher's oil holdings, which he has been
interested in for a number of years, have developed to
large ijroportions during recent years, the companies
with which he is associated having some of the most
pronu'nent oil men in the mid-west field connected with
them.

I)r. Goucher's life in Jamestown is marked with
noted success, for not only was he a leader in his pro-
fession but he has accomplished things in a civic way
for the city which have proven a great public benefit,
lie was the first man who talked, labored and by all
honorable means sought to convince the Jamestown
school authorities of the value a detital clinic would be



BIOGRAPHICAL



415



to the health of the school children of the city, and was
one of the dentists who volunteered to give a certain
portion of their time to the work of the clinic without
remuneration. So, too, he stood, the friend of every
progressive movement looking toward a better, health-
ier Jamestown. Dr. Goucher was first to suggest a mu-
nicipal milk plant, having first brought it to the atten-
tion of Mayor Carlson six years before it was finally
endorsed by the people of Jamestown at a taxpayers'
election.

Dr. Goucher was one of the founders of the James-
town Dental Society, and in social and fraternal life
connected with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows,
the Fraternal Order of Eagles, Loyal Order of Moose,
the Knights of Pythias, the Moon Brook Country Club,
and in former years was a member of the Jamestown
Club. Dr. Goucher is a member of St. Luke's Protest-
ant Episcopal Church, and helpful in the various activ-
ities of the parish. He has always taken a deep interest
in out-of-door sports, and with gun, rod and reel has
hunted and fished in the woods and waters famed
among sportsmen throughout the L'nited States and
Canada. Automobiling is another of his favorite recre-
ations, and he was for a number of years an official
member of the national, state and local automobile asso-
ciations, serving as the first director of the X^ational
Automobile Association from Western New York, and
the Jamestown Association as its first president. For a
number of years he was a director of the New York
State .Automobile Association.

The chapter on Dental Surgery in this work from the
pen of Dr. Goucher gives the reader a clear idea of his
decided literary ability, his versatility and the wide
range of his reading and research.

Dr. Goucher married (first) in Buffalo, N. Y., Nov.
23, 1898, MaBelle Wade, who died May 12, 1915, daugh-
ter of .'Mfred and Ella Wade. He married (second) in
Jamestown, N. Y., Feb. 14, 1917, G. Lemar Hurlbert,
daughter of George F. and Arietta (Vandervoort)
Hurlbert. The family home is at No. 306 East Fourth
street.

Dr. Goucher comes from a long line of ancestors, the
line of descent tracing back to Colonial and pioneer
stock, who have distinguished themselves as true ser-
vants of this land. His mother was a great-grand-
daughter of Ensign James Wilson, who wintered with
General Washington at Valley Forge and served on his
staflf. On his father's side he is a direct descendant of
the Gouchers who built the first brass cannon for the
Revolutionary War, their factory being at Canaioharie,
N. Y. One of the cannon manufactured by them was
captured by the British and is now at the British Mus-
eum in London, and has the name of the makers cast on
its side.



JOHN W. DOUBLEDAY— There are some lives
that, in their ceaseless, indefatigable energy, are the
cause of wonder to their fellows, and might well serve
as a model to those that would achieve success. The
men who are thus endowed undertake enterprises that
would make the average man pause, apparently without
fear of consequences, seeming impervious to the sting
of discouragement, meeting reverses, not with the usual
surrender of most men, but with the simple expedient



of trying again. The record of John W. Doubleday
shows him to be a man of that character. He is a
native of England, born there March 22, 1841, a son of
Henry and Mary (Phillips) Doubleday, both of whom
were natives of England and came to America in 1849,
locating at Brooklyn, now New York City.

John W. Doubleday was but eight years old when he
crossed the Atlantic in a sailing vessel, landing in New
York, going at once to his new home in Brooklyn,
where he attended the public schools. He was ambi-
tious as a lad and soon found employment, his compen-
sation for his work being two dollars and fifty cents a
week, from which he had to pay two dollars per week
for board, and twelve cents for ferry fare. At the age
of sixteen he became a clerk in a large dry goods store
in New York City, where he continued until 1S63.
However, he was not content, and that year he left for
the oil regions of Western Pennsylvania and became a
prospector. His operation in oil and gas proved re-
markably successful. In partnership with others, they
bought a gas plant for $49,000. The company was
formed, and Mr. Doubleday was elected secretary and
manager. Through his keen business ability and untir-
ing efforts, the business grew to such proportions that
they were able to dispose of the plant in a year and a
half for $410,000. In 18S0 he withdrew from the oil and
gas fields, turning his attention to the manufacturing
industry. This year he came to Jamestown and at once
became interested in textile manufacturing and other
enterprises. In 1889 he, with Mr. J. S. Patterson, pur-
chased the controlling interests of the Jamestown
Woolen Spinning Company and continued thus until
l8g6, when the company was incorporated under the
name of The Empire Worsted Mills. The original
stock of this company was one hundred thousand, which
since its incorporation, through the shrewd business
management of Mr. Doubleday, has greatly increased
from one hundred thousand, with a large surplus, to
one million stock, with a large surplus. The plant has
been extensively improved by the erection of two four-
storied buildings of brick and stone, with brick dye
house, two weaving buildings, brick finishing plant and
storage building. The floor space now in use comprises
three hundred thousand feet, and boiler capacity in-
creased from one hundred horse power to thirteen hun-
dred. The corporation also owns the Acme Worsted
Mills, employing nearly two hundred people. Nearly
si.x hundred employees are on the pay roll of The
Empire Worsted Mills. The products of these two
mills have a distinct place in the textile market of the
world and are sold through the company's offices in
New York, Philadelphia, Boston and Chicago, with
annual sales from two and a ha-lf million to three mil-
lion dollars. Mr. Doubleday held the office of presi-
dent of the company until he retired from active busi-
ness in 1915, when he was elected president emeritus.
The other members of the corporation are: L. M. But-
man, president; W. D. Broadhead, vice-president, and
G. W. Berquist, secretary and treasurer.

Mr. Doubleday was also interested in the steel indus-
try. In iS8g he, with six others, organized the Du-
quesne Pennsylvania Steel Company at an investment
of one million five hundred thousand dollars. Mr.
Doubleday served as secretary of the company. This



4i6



CHAUTAUQUA COUNTY



enterprise, under Mr. Doubleday's management, also
proved a success, and in 1S92 it was sold to the Car-
negie Steel Company, and this is now one of its largest
plants.

Mr. Doubleday married (first") Maria L. Taylor, who
bore him three children: Mary, who is the widow of
E. D. Boyd, who resides in San Pedro, Los Angeles,
Cal.: William, who is a fruit grower and resides at
El Ca.ion. San Diego, Cal.; and Grace, who is wife of
Rev. Charles ^^^ Harris, and resides in Montana. Mr.
Doubleday married (.second) Nellie C. Thayer. By
this union there were three children: Ethelbert, de-
ceased: Edna, the wife of Rev. H. \V. Georgi; Sybil,
the wife of Frederick \V. Mix, of Jamestown.

Mr. Doubleday is a member of Petrolia Lodge, An-
cient Free and Accepted Masons, and the National
\\'ool Manufacturers' L'nion. In political belief he is
independent, voting for the man and measures which
are for the best interests of the people. Mr. Double-
day and his wife are members 01 the Baptist church.
They are much devoted to their family, and spend their



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