Moses King.

The men of New York: a collection of biographies and portraits of citizens of the Empire State prominent in business, professional, social, and political life during the last decade of the nineteenth century (Volume 1) online

. (page 6 of 69)
Online LibraryMoses KingThe men of New York: a collection of biographies and portraits of citizens of the Empire State prominent in business, professional, social, and political life during the last decade of the nineteenth century (Volume 1) → online text (page 6 of 69)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

\oveinber ..'<>, /,SV/^ . was elected snccesiirely super-
visor fmin ///,' second ward of Buffalo in IS'lHl, 18~(),

and IX < 1, county fudge of Erie county in 1$7~, anil
justice of th>- Supreme Court for flic Htli judicial dis-
trict in 1S7<1 : 7i'<?.f re-elected Supreme Court justice
in 1X!)() : icas appointed successively associate justice of
the General Term of tiic Supreme Court for the fifth
i/epartmcnt h\ Governor Cleveland in 1SS4, associate
judge of the second division of the Court of Appeals by
Governor Hill in /.S'.V.'y, and associate justice of t/ie
General Term ( again ) />}' Governor Flower in 1892 ;
was elected associate judge of tlic Court of Appeals in

M. IbammOUfc has often been called
to serve the people of his county in an official capacity,
because he has always been faithful to their interests.
He was born upon a farm, and passed his early
\ ears there. He did the usual work of a tanner's


boy, went to the common schools, such as a new
country affords, and after reaching a suitable age
walked six miles a day to get the better advantage*
offered by a "select " school. He closed his school


career by a short attendance at Fredonia Academy.
Before 1850 he taught school in Pennsylvania and
Kentucky, and soon afterward went to Mississippi,
where he turned his attention to the manufacture of
lumber. Returning to his native county, he taught
school again for a few years. Afterwards he con-
ducted a country store, studying law at the same
time. He came to Buffalo to finish his legal studies
with the law firm of Sawin & Lockwood, and was
admitted to the bar in l!S(il in that city. After
practicing law for two years at Angola, N. Y., he
returned to mercantile pursuits for several years at
Brant, N. Y. He was elected to the office of magis-
trate there; and for twelve years, from 1865 on, he
was a member of the board of supervisors from that
town, serving with the late Judge Sheldon and with
Judge Haight, at present of the Court of Appeals.

In military affairs Mr. Hammond's interest is best
shown by his fourteen years' connection with the
National Guard of the State of New York. He en-
listed in 1852. He went with the 67th regiment of
the National Guard to Harri.slmrg, Penn., in l.Mi.'l,
when Lee's army was invading the state, and was
on duty at Harrisburg when the battle of Gettys-
burg was fought. Mr. Hammond held a 1st lieu-
tenant's commission while he was in the United
States service, and was honorably discharged after
about three months' duty. After his return he was
elected captain of company C, 67th regiment, and
held that rank when he left the militia service in

Mr. Hammond's popularity in Erie county was
first shown in 1877, when he was elected county
judge to succeed Albert Haight. He was twice re-
elected, serving twelve years in that important office.
From 1890 until 1892 Mr. Hammond was a member
of the law linn of Peck, Hammond, Peck & Hatch ;
for the next three years the style was Hammond iV
Hatch ; and in 1895 the firm became Hammond &

He has spent much time in travel, and has supple-
mented the scant school advantages of his youth by
wide reading and observation. He is interested in all
church matters, and \\as a charter member, and for
many years a trustee, of the Angola Congregational
Church. He has been a number of the First Con-
gregational Church of Buffalo since its organixation.
In all movuncnts for higher citizenship and improved
public sen ice his voice and influence have always
been on the right side. He has long been a member
of the Buffalo Civil Servi e Reform Association, and
he is a member of the Good Government Club of
the ward in which he lives. In politics Mr. Ham-
mond has been steadfastly Republican.

Mr. Hammond's eminence in his profession and
his social position were not attained at a single
bound, but rather came as a fitting reward to patient
endeavor and continued achievements. He has seen
Erie county change from a forest into a garden, and
Buffalo has expanded under his eyes from a small city
to a metropolis. Throughout these years, in all his
dealings with his fellow-men, he has been painstak-
ingly honest and conscientious. This fact, more
clearly than any other perhaps, gives the keynote to
Judge Hammond's long and successful career.

lliiinniihi was born at Hamburg, N. Y., November
4, 7<S'.?7 .- attended common schools anil Fredonia
(N. y. } Academy ; married Amy A. Hunt of Evans,
JV. Y. , in 18~>4, and Louisa A. Hnrd of the same place
in 1SH 1 ; was admitted to the bar in Buffalo in 1861 ;
was it member of flic National Guard from IS'i .' /,
/,SV)V/ : was elected county judge of Erie county in
1877, and was re-elected in 18~8 and in lti,S-{ .- has
practiced law in Buffalo since ISftO.

IfoCIUKVer is a self-made man, hav-
ing successfully applied his natal talents to the oppor-
tunities of his circumstances. Though born in Wur-
temburg, Germany, he is essentially an American.
His school education, obtained partly in Germany
and partly in this country, ended with his fourteenth
year. His father, however, was a Lutheran minis-
ter, poor in this world's goods, but possessing the
character and qualifications of his calling ; so that
while Mr. Hengerer's school days were few in num-
ber, he had the great advantage of a sound home
training, which is often more than equivalent to
scholastic opportunities.

His family came to America while he was still a
\K>\ , and for twelve years he lived in Fittsburg, Penn.
At the age of twenty-two he came to Buffalo, and
entered the dry-goods house of Sherman, Barnes &
Co., as a clerk, at six dollars a week. From this
humble beginning, by force of industry, persever-
ance, and integrity, Mr. Hengerer has achieved his
present position in the business, social, and political
life of Buffalo. To call his success luck, would be
to disparage hard work, pluck, and honesty. In
1874 his worth and ability were recognized, and he
was admitted to the firm, which w : as then known as
1 lames, Bancroft & Co. This was the style of the
firm for eleven years, when a new organization took
place, and the name of the firm was changed to
Barnes, Hengerer & Co. The death of the senior
partner, and the expansion of business consequent
upon the evolution of dry -goods houses into the mod-
ern department stores, in time required a different



organization ; and in 1895 a joint-stock company was
formed, known as The William Hengerer Company,
taking its name from the clerk who thirty-odd years
before began on a salary of six dollars a week.

Only once has Mr. Hengerer' s business career
been interrupted, and then there was a break of two
years, when he was engaged in the more
serious business of helping to put down
the Rebellion. He had been in Buffalo
scarcely a month when the Civil War
broke out, and President Lincoln called
for troops. He did what thousands of
men to-day earnestly wish they had
done he enlisted as a volunteer soldier.
Mr. Hengerer was an alien born, but he
showed the true spirit of an American
patriot. He enlisted for two years as a
member of the 21st regiment, N. Y. vol-
unteers the first regiment to go to the
front from Buffalo. During its service it
was part of the Army of the Potomac,
and shared in its battles and its triumphs.

Returning home in 1863, Mr. Hen-
gerer resumed his connection with Sher-
man, Barnes & Co., and steadily devoted
himself to their interests. His life, how-
ever, has not been confined to the
accumulation of wealth, to the neglect of
his duties as a citizen and a member of
society. His time, influence, and money
have been freely given to every commend-
able object. In politics he is a " war
Democrat," and his counsel and assist-
ance are invariably sought by his party
associates. While he has uniformly de-
clined, owing to the cares of business,
to consider nominations for elective
offices, he has served the public for many
years as park commissioner, and as trustee
of the State Normal School.

Mr. Hengerer is a member of the Knglish Luth-
eran church, and in all the philanthropic movements
connected with church work in these days his name
is among those relied upon for financial assistance.
He is a Mason in high standing, having served as
Master, High Priest, Commander, and District
Deputy Grand Master. He has a life membership in
both the Buffalo Library Association and the Buffalo
Historical Society. He is a member, also, of the
Liedertafel and ( )rpheus societies, and of the Buffalo

Mr. Hengerer finds diversion from business in
travel, and has visited Europe several times for rest
and recreation. Unostentatious in his style of living,

cordial in his friendship, prompt and progressive
in business, he has won his place in Buffalo by
the same qualities he displayed when, at a critical
time in the country's history, he donned the uniform
of a volunteer soldier of the United States, and sac-
rificed everything to the call of duty.

II ~ll. 1. 1 AM HENGERER

gerer was born a/ N'ltrtewburg, Germany, March 2,
18-39 ; attended common schools : came to tiic United
States in 1S4!) : served in the Union Army, 1X61-63 :
married Louisa Dlterr of Buffalo September ..'/,
1S63 ; has been park commissioner of Buffalo since
a in/ trustee of State Normal School since 7,V.s'.7.

Ik. 1foOpkiU3 is a son of the Empire
State. His father, General Timothy S. Hopkins,
lived for many years at Great Barrington, Mass., but
moved to Erie county in 1800, and purchased a farm
near Williamsville, where the subject of this sketch
was born March 2, IMC.



General Hopkins was appointed captain by Gov-
ernor George Clinton in 1803, major by Governor
Lewis in 1806, and lieutenant colonel by Governor
Tomkins in 1811 ; and he served as brigadier general
tinder Major General Hall during the war of 1812, but
resigned his commission when peace was declared.


The boyhood of Nelson K. Hopkins was spent
upon his father's farm, where practical experience of
many kinds supplemented the scant educational op-
portunities offered by the district school. When
only seventeen, he secured the position of clerk and
manager to the contractors then building the Mac-
adam road between Williamsville and Buffalo. In
this position he had entire charge of the accounts
with over 400 men. After the completion of this
work, Mr. Hopkins again turned his attention to his
education, and in ls.'!4 entered the academy at Fre-
donia, N. Y. , where he remained two terms. He
then spent two years at the Genesee Wesleyan Semi-
nary at Lima, N. Y. Before entering this school
young Hopkins had been elected captain of a com-

pany of militia at Williamsville, and while he was at
the seminary his company was called out. Mr.
Hopkins immediately started for the front, where he
enlisted in the United States service with sixty of his
men, and served in what was called the " Patriot
War." He was stationed on the Niagara frontier,
near the foot of Ferry street in Buffalo.

He next entered Union College at
Schenectady, N. Y., where his brilliant
work and the high honors with which he
graduated in 1842 gave promise of those
i|iialities that were to be developed when
he was to battle with the actual realities
of life. Upon his graduation Mr. Hop-
kins was elected to membership in the
I'hi Beta Kappa society an honor con-
ferred only upon students of the highest

The legal profession has always at-
tracted men of ambition and of keen
and brilliant mind, and Mr. Hopkins
made choice of it as his life-work. He
entered the office of Potter & Spaulding,
in Buffalo, as a clerk, and in 1846 was
duly admitted to the bar in the city of
New York. Thus began the career that
has made him one of Buffalo's most
honored sons. Mr. Hopkins has devoted
himself to the practice of law contin-
uously since then, with the single ex-
ception of four years spent at the state
capitol, as comptroller. Mr. Hopkins
has ever been a counselor rather than an
advocate. Much of his practice has con-
cerned the settlement of estates, the
examination of titles, and the placing
of investments duties that fitted him
well tor the responsible position he filled
so brilliantly in the service of the state.
Mr. Hopkins has always been a staunch Republi-
can. After several years of service in Buffalo, as
ward supervisor and as alderman, he was appointed
collector of internal revenue of the Buffalo district
by President Johnson in 1866. In 1871, without his
knowledge or consent, he was nominated for state
comptroller, and was elected by a handsome majority.
He was called to the administration of the financial
department of the state at a very critical period.
Tweed and his accomplices were then in power, and
the\ had sadly disorganized the finances of the com-
monwealth. The sinking funds had been despoiled
to make good other appropriations, and in various
ways the comptroller's department was greatly in
need of reform. Mr. Hopkins addressed himself to



the task with the painstaking care and unbending in-
tegrity that have characterized his public and private
career ; and, happily for the good of the state, he
was well qualified for the work, both by natural ability
and by legal training. His first annual report was
greeted with applause, both for its clear elucidation
of the financial condition, and for the evidence it
bore that a regime of retrenchment had replaced that
of extravagance. That men of all parties appreciated
his services, was shown in 1S7-'!, when he was re-
elected to the office he had filled so well, notwith-
standing the defeat of every other candidate on the
Republican ticket. During his four years of office,
$6,500,000 that had been abstracted from the treasury
in direct violation of the constitution was restored,
and nearly $20,000,0(10 of the state debt was paid.

At the expiration of his second term of
office, Mr. Hopkins returned to Buffalo
and resumed his legal practice, which he
has continued ever since. It is scarcely
necessary to say that he is a prominent
citizen there, and actively interested in
the welfare of the city. He was one of
the organizers of the present paid Fire De-
partment, and for ten years occupied the
honorable position of fire commissioner,
where his services were of a careful and
conservative nature that guarded the best
public interests. For many years he was
the attorney and a director of White's
Bank, now the American Exchange Bank,
of Buffalo ; and he has always been
identified with the prominent local clubs,
organizations, and societies.

Nelson K. Hopkins was born at }\ 11 liana. -
rille, N. K, March 2, 1810; attended
Fredonia (N. V. ) Academy anil ]\'esleyan
Seminan- at Lima, X. Y. , ami graduate,!
from Union College, Schencclady, N. Y.,
in 184~ ; ft'<w admitted to the bar at Xe7* '
York city in ISJ^G : married Lucy Ann
Allen of Buffalo in 18.^8, and Louise
Ann Pratt of Buffalo in 7.V.55 , was alder-
man in Buffalo, 1862-60 ; u<as appointed
collector of internal revenue by President
Johnson in 1800; was elected comptroller
of the state of New York in 1871, ami was
re-elected in 1873 ; has practiced /a?,' in
Buffalo since /,V ',<!.

first rank, and a traveler and hunter of renown. Ik-
stands high as an author, and as a business man he
has won an enviable position.

Born with a love of nature, which his early life
did much to foster, he sought employment when a
young man in the famous natural history establish-
ment of Professor Ward in Rochester, and there pre-
pared himself for the work as a field naturalist in
which he gained such distinction. His first venture in
this line was in Cuba and Florida, where he won his
spurs as a naturalist by discovering and describing
the Florida crocodile, a genus quite distinct from the
alligator. His success gave impetus to the desire to
enter richer, if wilder and more dangerous, lands;
and in 1-S7I! lie undertook an expedition to the West
Indies and South America, where he made a large

/[7/././. I.I/ T. HORNADAY

Q. IbOrna&aV? has made a success
of life in more directions than are open to most men.
He is a naturalist of distinction, a taxidermist of the

collection of strange fishes, beautiful birds, and hor-
rible reptiles. On his return he went to Europe,
and spent some time in study in various museums of
science and art. His next trip was to the East



Indies. This was the most extensive expedition Mr.
Hornaday ever made, and lasted nearly three years,
during which he sent home the largest collection of
specimens ever made in the Far East. His adven-
tures in India, Ceylon, the Malay Peninsula, and
Borneo, have been given to the public in a book en-
titled "Two Years in the Jungle," which was pub-
lished in 1885, and ran through four editions.

Mr. Hornaday returned to Rochester in 1<S7!(, and
three years later was appointed chief taxidermist of
the United States National Museum at Washington.
During the eight years in which he held that import-
ant position, it is not too much to say that he stood
at the head of the profession. Many of the recent
advances in the taxidermic art are due to him. He
introduced the present very popular method of
mounting large quadrupeds in groups and placing
them amidst their natural surroundings. Some of
his work notably the group of buffalo which is
such an ornament to the National Museum has
received the highest praise from the best authorities,
and is a monument to his skill as an artist and his
knowledge as a naturalist.

In 1889 Mr. Hornaday proposed the establishment
by congress, on a grand scale, of a national zoolog-
ical park at Washington, to be under the control of
the Smithsonian Institution. He was forthwith de-
tailed by the secretary to formulate plans and present
them to congress. He did this with so much success
that in the next two years congress appropriated
*'2!)2,000 to carry out the scheme. Mr. Hornaday was
appointed superintendent, and served the commission-
ers for one year in that capacity. When the park
was finally placed under the control of the Smith-
sonian Institution, Professor Langley insisted on
changes in its plans so sweeping that Mr. Hornaday
resigned his position, severed his connection with
the government, and came to Buffalo. Here he
became interested in real estate, and with four other
operators formed a close corporation called the Union
Land Exchange, which has been the direct means of
bringing a large amount of capital to Buffalo.

As a writer, Mr. Hornaday has interested the
public in many subjects. His story of life in the
Kust Indies has already been referred to. He has
written a work on "Taxidermy and Zoological Col-
U-i Hug", that is a standard authority.-. His memoir
on the "Extermination of the American Bison" (a
government publication ) attracted much attention.
His contributions to various papers and magazines
are well known and popular. His recent novel, en-
titled "The Man Who Became a Savage," which
made its first appearance in the Illustrated Buffalo
Express, possesses great merit and originality.

The aesthetic side of Mr. Hornaday's nature finds
expression in an intense love for art. He is an ex-
cellent judge of paintings, and has begun to form a
collection of works by American artists only.

ple Hornaday 7pas born near Plainjicld, Ind., Decem-
ber 1, 1S.54 ; attended the public schools of Knoxville,
Icnva, Oskaloosa ( loii'a ) Co/lege, and the Iowa Agricul-
tural College : studied zoology, taxidermy, and muscology
in Rochester and in various European museums ; trav-
eled extensively from 1875 to 1879, visiting the West
Indies, Soi/t/i America, and the Far East, making
zoological collections : married fosepliine Chamberlain
of Battle Creek, Mich., September 11, 1819 ; was
made cliief taxidermist of the United States National
Museum in 1882 ; proposed the establishment and pre-
pared /lie plans of the National Zoological Park at
Washington in 7.V.V.S' ,- has been engaged in the real-
estate business in Buffalo since 1890.

3. 1foUrC> is a striking example of the

men whose capacity for work is such that they can be
at once successful in business and actively interested
in public affairs. He has been a thoroughly practical
citizen, attending strictly to his private enterprises on
the one side, and on the other assuming his full share
of the duties that we all owe to the community in
which we live. One of the encouraging signs of the
times in our country to-day is the steady increase in
the number of business men who are recognizing the
fact that the state has a just claim to their services in
some official capacity. It is in this way only that
our politics can be made clean and respectable.

Mr. Hurd's father, Clark W. Hurd, was of Ver-
mont stock, coming to Erie county in the '.'Id's.
He was one of the first settlers on the Buffalo Creek
Indian reservation at Elma, where Harvey Hurd was
born. The latter's early life was passed upon the
farm, and his early education was obtained in the
district school. To this was added an excellent
training at the old Buffalo Academy and at Cornell
University, from which he graduated in 1-S72. His
commercial life has been confined to the lumber
business chiefly, in which he is at present engaged in
Buffalo, in company with his brother, James T.
Hurd, under the firm name of Hurd Bros.
_Jn 1890 and 1891 Mr. Hurd was president of the
Buffalo Lumber Exchange. He is a member of the
Buffalo Merchants' Exchange, and served for several
years on the board of trustees of that institution.
He is also a member of the Buffalo Builders' Ex-
change. He is part owner of the Buffalo Planing Mill
Company, which operates one of the largest and
best equipped plants in the United States, and is vice


' ;/Yi.V7Y:7i'.V SECTION


president of the company. Mr. Hurd is also a director
of the Buffalo Loan, Trust, and Safe Deposit Com-
pany, and of the Lancaster Brick Yard Company.
He is a life member of the Buffalo Library Association.

In public life Mr. Hurd has made a good record.
Few men are able to manage many things well at the
same time, but Mr. Hurd has shown
ability as a legislator as well as in the
walks of mercantile life. He was first
elected to the legislature in 1877, and
served altogether four years. His princi-
pal work in the assembly was in connec-
tion with the Erie canal. For three years
he was chairman of the canal committee,
and directed his efforts towards securing
the adoption of a constitutional amend-
ment making the canals free from tolls.
His services in this matter have not been
forgotten in western New York.

Mr. Hurd was a member of the legis-
lature in 1881, when the memorable
resignation of Mr. Conkling from the
United States senate, together with that
of Mr. Platt, unexpectedly rendered the
election of two senators necessary. The
Republican party, with which Mr. Hurd
has been identified, was divided into two
factions one favoring the return of Mr.
Conkling to the senate and the other
opposing such return. A long and bitter
fight followed in the legislature. Mr.
Hurd was a strong admirer of the New
York senator, and supported him to the
end. This trait of adhering to a friend or
to a cause is a marked one in his character.

Mr. Hurd is an ardent Republican, and
has taken an active interest as one of the
managers of the party in Erie county.
For several years he was chairman of the
Republican general committee. He is at present a
member of the Republican state committee, repre-
senting the 33d senatorial district, and is a member
of the executive committee of the state committee.

In social life Mr. Hurd is eminently companion-
able. He is a member of the Buffalo Club and of
the University Club, and is a 32d degree Mason.
While the cares of business leave little time for
diversions, his life is not in any sense one-sided.

Ihtni was born at Elma, N. )"., February ..'.v, l.v.',.'i .
iL'n.f Cilii cated ai Buffalo Academy and at Cornell Uni-
versity^ from which lie graduated in 1S1 2 : was a
member of the New York legislature, /.V/.S'-,S'/ .- has been

Online LibraryMoses KingThe men of New York: a collection of biographies and portraits of citizens of the Empire State prominent in business, professional, social, and political life during the last decade of the nineteenth century (Volume 1) → online text (page 6 of 69)