Samuel W Durant.

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

. (page 141 of 192)
Online LibrarySamuel W DurantHistory of Oneida County, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers → online text (page 141 of 192)
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Simeon Coe, Spencer Briggs, Baxter Gage, Josiah Hull,
Nathan Robinson, Knos Pratt, and a Mr. Root settled in
the vicinity of Sauquoit."*

Kirkland Griflan, Esq , was a resident of the east side of
the creek, and a veteran of the Revolution. It is said
that he Wiis one of those who shared the terrible privations
of the " Mill Prison," in England, during that great strug-
gle for independence, and aft,er being released joined Com-
modore Paul Jones, and was engaged in the fearful en-
counter between Jones' vessel, the " Bon Homme Richard,"
and the British frigate " Serapis," which resulted in the
capture of the latter. Many of Grifiin's fellow-prisoners
were among Jones' crew, and fought like vengeful tigers to
wipe out the insults ofl^ered them by the minions of Britain.
Esquire Griffin became a prominent man in the town of

Benjamin Merrills, another early settler in this vicinity,
was a veteran of the old French war.

Captain Abner Bacon kept a. tavern very early on the
present site of Colonel Chauncey Butler's residence, and
afterwards, in 1802, Judge James Orton kept a store and
tavern in a part of the building later known as " Savage's
Tavern Stand."

Dr. Leverett Bishop, of Sauquoit, is a son of David
Bishop, who came to this town about 1808, from Guilford,
New Haven Co., Conn. He located with his family on a
farm half a mile east of Paiis Hill, now owned by his
grandson, S. B. Bishop. The family moved from Connecti-
cut with an ox-team. About this time Amos Bishop made
a trip to this vicinity on foot, carrying a pack on his back.
The Bishop farm was originally settled by a man named
Dunbar, who probably dug the present well on the place.
When they cauie to the town a saw-mill was in operation
at Sauquoit, and had been for several years. The elder
Bishop was a veteran of the Revolution, and was with
Washington on his famous retreat from Long Island. Dr.
Leverett Bishop served at Sacket's Harbor, in the capacity
of" surgeon's mate" (assistant surgeon as now termed), in
the war of 1812. Amos, the father of S. R. Bishop, was
under fire at Oswego. Another son, Joel, was lost at sea,
off Sandy Hook, in the latter part of 1810. Dr. Bishop
be"an the study of medicine during the war of 1812-15,
and in the fall of 1815 began practice at the village of

■■■■ Jones' Annals.



Skanandoa, in the town of Vernon. The following year,
1816, he came to Sauquoit, where he has since resided,
and practiced his profession. He was eighty-seven years
of age in July, 1878. His brother Amos died May 11,
1866, at the age of eighty-three.

Among the early physicians were Drs. " Dick" Perkins
and "Jack" Perkins, brothers; they possibly lived in the
edge of New Hartford. Dr. Amos G. Hull was a short
time at Paris Hill, but finally sold his ride to Dr. Elnathan
Judd. Hull went to New Hartford, afterwards to Utica,
and finally to New York. He was a fine physician, and
one of the best surgeons in the country. Dr. Scth Hast-
ings, who lived beyond Paris Hill, was one of the eariiest
physicians. Dr. Spaulding Pierce lived in West Sauquoit
village, and was here previous to the arrival of Dr. Bishop.
The physicians at present practicing in tliLs town are the
following : At Cassville, Dr. Barnum ; at Clayville, Dra.
Jones, Gilford, and Forbes ; at Paris Hill, Dr. Hughes ; at
Sauquoit, Drs. Bishop, Osborne, and Curtis.

The Sauquoit post-office was established about 1820,
through the instrumentality of Hobart Graves and Dr. L.
Bishop. The office was located on the east side of the
creek, and Mr. Graves was the first postmaster. He had
a general country store, which was the second one on the
east side of the creek, the first having been kept by Henry
Crane, who discontinued the business before Graves estab-
lished his. Stephen Savage owned a store on the west side.
His grandson, Stephen G. Savage, is at present a merchant
on the same side, and also has the post-office. One Per-
kins kept a store here previous to the tiUiC Savage began

The village contains four stores, a hotel, a post-office, a
Lodge of Good Templars, a Masonic Lodge, and several
mechanic shops, besides various manufacturing establish-
ments, which are described elsewhere.

The present " Sauquoit Hotel," on the west side of the
creek, was built by Joseph Mason in 1862, and stands on
the ground previously occupied by the old " Savage tavern
stand," which was burned down. It is a frame building,
the only hotel in the place, and at present owned by Alfred
Rogers. A hotel was at one time kept at the corners, on
the east side, but has long been discontinued.

Sauqunit Lodge, No. 150, F. and A. 31., is the succes-
sor to " Paris Lodge, No. 348," which was one of the first
Lodges in the county, having been formed previous to
1816, and discontinued during the " anti- Masonic" excite-
ment. The present Lodge was chartered June 21, 1849,
and incorporated in April, 1866. It owns a spacious lot
of ground, and a frame building for its use as a lodge-room.
Its membership in June, 1878, was about 100, and its
principal officers for the same year are as follows : Josiah
S. Parker, W. M. ; B. E. Forbes, M.D., S. W. ; C. L. Mar-
shall, J. W. ; Wayne Thurston, Treas. ; John R. Jones,
Sec. ; D. H. Morgan, S. D. ; Reuben Ilorrocks, J. D.

The grist- and saw-mills of W. F. Mould & Brothers
have been owned by this firm since Jan. 1, 1853, at which
time they were purchased of Henry Gilbert. The grist-
mill has been extensively repaired and improved since
coming into the hands of the present firm. During the
winter thi'ce extra hands are employed, and in the summer

one. The grist-mill contains three runs of stones, and does
principally a custom business. The father of these gentle-
men, William L. Mould, was originally from England, and
for four years previous to the purchase of this mill had
operated the " Farmers' Factory-Mill," on the creek be-
tween Sauquoit and Clayville. This latter mill is now out
of use. It was built by the " Farmers' Cotton Company,"
whose factory was near the present upper paper-mill of the
Messrs. Graham. The latter is not in operation. The
upper paper-mill of this company, a short distance above
Sauquoit, at one time owned by Savage & Moore, is also
idle. The gristmill at Sauquoit was originally built by
Captain Abner Bacon.

Fi-iemlly Woolen Company. — About 1812 a company of
Quakers came to Sauquoit, purchased a saw-mill which had
been erected by Abner Bacon, Sr., rebuilt it, and also put
up a shop and various other buildings ; the shop being the
same now standing east of the depot, occupied by a store,
a barber-shop, etc. They also built quite an extensive
woolen-mill, immediately below the saw-mill, and began
business customary to those days, before power-looms had
come iu fashion. They spun the yarn and lot it out to
private families to weave into satinets. The factory did not
prove a remunerative investment, and was sold on an exe-
cution to Thomas Dean, afterwards of Deanville, and Isaac
Smith then carried it on for a while. In ] 824 it was pur-
chased by Kellogg Hurlburt, Abner Brownell, and John
Chadwick, proprietors at the same time of the " Eagle Cotton-
Factory," now " Chadwick's Mills," two miles below, in the
town of New Hartford. This firm converted it into a cot-
ton-factory, changed the name to " Franklin Mill," and
began manufacturing cotton cloth in 1826. In 1827 the
firm divided, Messrs. Hurlburt and Brownell remaining in
charge. Soon after they made a large addition to the fac-
tory ; Brownell afterwards bought Hurlburt's interest, and
the firm-name became A. Brownell & Co. A second addi-
tion was constructed, making the entire building 160 by 36
feet in dimensions. Mr. Brownell's sons finally assumed
charge of the factory, which was burned May 4, 1877, and
has not been rebuilt.

Abner Brownell, who was one of the earliest manufac-
turers of cotton goods in the State, was originally from
Portsmouth, Rhode Island. He first settled at what is now
Toddsville, Otsego County, about 1807-8, where he was
overseer of the " Union Cotton-Factory ;" came to Chad-
wick's Mills about 1809, and to Sauquoit about 1812. He
introduced the printing of cotton goods in this part of the
country, and was a prominent manufacturer all his life.

Sauquoit Silk Manufacturing Company. — The building
occupied by this company stands just below Sauquoit vil-
lage, and was built by A. Brownell & Co., for a cotton-fac-
tory, about 1840-45. It contained sixty looms, with other
necessary machinery. This and the " Franklin Mill" were
both in operation at the same time, and doing a large busi-
ness. The present silk manufiicturing firm have occupied
the building since September, 1873, the cotton machinery
having been removed by the previous owners. The present
officers of the company are. President, L. R. Stelle, of Sau-
quoit; Treasurer, Richard Rossmassler, of Philadelphia ;
Secretary, A. D. Stelle, of Sauquoit. From 85 to 100

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Hijjos By J SSmiih.UIic

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LijH Bi LH Lonrrt.FHtLA.pA.

Residence 5f GEORGE D. DUNH AM, paris, Oneida Co., N.r.


Mr. Dunham was born in Brimfield, Mass., on the 4th
of June, 1790. When he was four years of age his father,
David Dunham, brought him with the family to Oneida
County. They came by land with an ox-team from Brim-
field, Mass., and were eleven days in performing the journey.
Mr. George D. Dunham has still some of the furniture
brought by his grandfather, David Dunham, from Mass-
achusetts at the time of his removal here in 1794, which
he keeps as a souvenir of the emigration of his ancestor to
this county.

Mr. Darius Dunham settled first in the town of West-
moreland, and in March, 1807, removed to Paris, and settled
upon the farm which he occupied till the time of his death.
He married Polly, daughter of Asahel Curtiss, and reared
a family of six children, — four sons and two daughters, —
two of whom are living at this writing, viz. : N. C. and
George D. Dunham, the former residing at Sauquoit, and
the latter on the old homestead of his father's.

In the reminiscences given us of the life of Darius Dun-
ham, it is stated that when on his way to his new wilderness

home in Oneida County, he passed with his ox-team through
what is now the city of Utica, and the place at that time
contained one log tavern, one log store, and three or four
log houses.

When quite young Mr. Dunham united with the Meth-
ofdist Episcopal Church, of which he remained a consistent
member till the time of his death. He departed this life
Oct. 28, 1874, having fulfilled the earthly mission of an
honest, industrious, and worthy citizen, and an earnest and
exemplary Christian. He was for many years a trustee of
his church, a regular attendant and supporter of its ser-
vices, and in his last will and testament bequeathed a hand-
some sum to charitable objects.

He was in theory and practice an earnest reformer, using
his influence for the suppression of intemperance, the aboli-
tion of slavery, the exaltation and purification of politics,
and for the promotion of every virtue and every excellence
in human society. He was pre-eminently an unselfish man,
and devoted much of his time and energy to the good of



operatives are employed, and from 40,000 to 50,000 pounds
of silk used annually, costing on an average 86 per pound.
The manufactures are tram and organzine, for weaving pur-
poses, and fringe for ladies' trimmings. The same company
lias a factory at Philadelphia, Pa., with a capacity for manu-
facturing $150,000 worth annually, and is also engaged in


is located on the Sauquoit Creek, at the .south line of the
town. Its first settlers were Elias Hopkins, Mark Hop-
kins, and Eleazer Kellogg, who were here some years pre-
vious to 18(10. Elias Hopkins built a saw-mill, which
was the first mill of any kind above the Paris Furnace.
It stood on the site of the grist-mill afterwards owned by
Benjamin Rhodes, of Bridgewater, and now the property
of Abel Budlong and Edwin Loomis. This grist-mill was
erected by Amasa Burchard, who also owned a saw-mill.
There was also a fork-factory here at one time. A grist-
mill was built by John Budlong very early, three-quarters
of a mile above the Paris Furnace, which has now gone out
of existence. The present carding-mill is of more recent
date, having been erected within the past ten or twelve
years by Alonzo Burdick. In 1807 a carding and cloth-
dressing mill was in operation, owned by Amasa Bur-
chard, who had built it about 1804-5. It was on the
spring-brook southwest of the village, and has long been

Nathan Randal came to the town of Paris in 1799, from
Connecticut, and settled a short distance north of the vil-
lage, removing to it in 1807, since which time his son.
Bishop T. Randal, has resided here. The latter and his
brother Abel were at Sacket's Harbor during the war of
1812, and their father was a soldier of the Revolution.
B. T. Randal is eighty-four years of age.

The post-office at Cassville has been established twenty-
five or thirty years ; the first postmaster was probably
Aaron Bligh. The last was Herbert Barnum, who moved
away from the village, and his successor had not been ap-
pointed in May, 1878.

One of the first hotel-keepers here was Michael Foster,
whose stand was a frame building which stood on the cor-
ner south of the creek, and which has long been removed.
The present " Cassville House" is a new building, and is
kept by David Morris. It is located near the railroad.

Cassville has two stores, a grist-mill, a saw-mill, and a
carding-mill, and several shops of various descriptions.
East of the village is Richfield Junction, where a branch
of the railway leads into the town of Bridgewater, and
thence into Otsego County, to Richfield Springs.

This village " was originally known as 'Paris Furnace.'
It consisted only of a few scattered houses and workshops;
and had no place of public worship within its limits, nor any
minister of religion settled in the place. The inhabitants
were of various religious sentiments, including a few Epis-
copalians. Mr. F. Hollister purchased the water-privileges
and grounds now pertaining to the Clayville and Empire
Mills corporations, and, with characteristic zeal, enterprise,

and public spirit, commenced the manufacturing interests
associated with those mills."*

Empire Woolen Company. — -The factory now owned by
this company was partly erected by Bacon & Collis, but
before it was finished was purchased by Frederick Hol-
lister when he came here, about 1842-43. It was first
known as the " Clayville Mills." Mr. Hollister built the
lower mill owned by this company in 1843—14. In the
latter year Hon. Henry Clay visited the place, and spoke
at a meeting held in the factory, the floors having been
laid, and the balance remaining unfinished. From that
time the village ha» been known as Clayville, after the
illustrious statesman. The officers of the present company
are: President and Treasurer, A. J. Williams, of Utica;
Trustees, A. J. Williams, A. G. Williams, I. A. Williams,
James H. Williams, N. A. Williams. The capital stock is
$250,000. About 350,000 yards of fancy cassimeres arc
manufactured annually, and employment is furnished to an
average of 230 operatives. The factory has received sev-
eral additions since Mr. Hollister owned it, and its capacity
is nearly doubled; it now contains fifteen sets of machinery.
The company still owns the upper, or old " Clayville Fac-
tory," which is not in use, the m.ic.hinery having been
mostly removed from it.

James Barnett, originally from Connecticut, and later a
resident of Dutchess Co,, N. Y., came to the town of Paris
in 1794, from the latter county, and settled near the line
of Bridgewater. He had served in the commissary depart-
ment during the Revolutionary war, and was one of the
many who lost their property through the depreciation in
value of the famous " Continental money." One son, Wil-
liam Barnett, saw service during the war of 1812, as a
substitute for his brother Albert, now of Clayville. The
latter was then engaged in the wool-carding and cloth-dress-
ing business at Cassville. Albert Barnett, Esq., who was
eighty-six years of age in December, 1877, has lived in
this town since 1794, with the exception of four years
spent in Delaware. He has served a number of years as
justice of the peace. In 1822 he was engaged to run a
carding and cloth dressing factory, which had been built
at Clayville, by Colonel Gardner Avery, Mr. Barnett aiding
in its erection. This factory stood a few i-ods below the
present " Empire Mill," and on the west side of the creek.
The land on which most of the factories in this place stand
was sold to the various owners by Jlr. Barnett. The latter
discontinued the business about 1830.

The first merchants in Clayville were Messrs. Bacon &
Collis, who established a small store and built the frame of
the " Clayville Woolen-Mill," which was completed and
put in operation by Frederick Hollister, as described.
Albert Barnett had a saw-mill where the Clayville mill
now is, which he was running when he sold the site to
Bacon & Collis. This saw-mill was built by Judge Eli-
phalet Sweeting, who settled here about 1800. Many of
the lo"-s placed in the old dam have never been removed.
The dam has been covered with earth.

Colonel Gardner Avery settled at the place in 1801 or
1802, and had an interest in the old cotton-factory known

» Rosords of St. John's Episcopa.1 Church, C'.ayviUe.



as the " Farmers' Mills," between Clayville and Sauquoit,
where the paper-mill now stands. The Avery family was
originally from Massachusetts. Eli Avery, a son of the
colonel, now a resident of the village, has been a prominent

The old Paris furnace, which gave the village its original
iiame, was commenced in 1800, and went into operation in
1801, Eliphalet Sweeting being the founder. The first
boarding-house was kept by a man named Hill, in a log
building, which for more than a year was the only edifice
within a mile of the f\irna(!e. Thomas Spofibrd, the son
of the millwright, lived in 1802 in'a log house north of
the furnace, aud the next building in that direction was the
log house occupied by Theodore Gilbert, three-fourths of a
mile farther north. Colonel Bentley, Deacon Charles Allen,
and David Budlong lived on the west hill, where they had
located before a settlement was begun at the furnace.

The old furnace stood on ground now occupied by one
of the shops at the scythe-factory of S. A. Millard. Beach
& Bowles were the first firm who engaged in scythe-making
here, and had a factory in which they made axes, screws,
and various other implements ; it stood on the ground now
occupied by the hoe and fork factory of Benjamin F.
Avery (a resident of the State of Kentucky). D. J. Mil-
lard carried on the same business for many years, but is
now deceased.

About 1855-58 a chair-factory was built northwest of
Clayville by Samuel Dexter, on a small stream emptying
into the Sauquoit, and various articles were manufactured.
At one time a run of stone was put in for the purpose of
grinding feed, and cider was also made. The machinery
has been mostly removed, and the factory is not now in
operation. It was known as the " Paris Chair-Factory."

A post-ofiice bearing the name of " Paris Furnace"
(since changed to Clayville) was established here very early
in the history of the place. Among the early postmasters
was Deacon Joseph Howard, who owned a small store and
a brewery. The ofiiee was kept at a hotel, which has been
remodeled and largely repaired, and is now occupied for a
a dwelling by Mrs. D. J. Millard. The present postmaster
is Ezekiel Pierce.

The present " IMurray House" was built by Frederick
Hollister while operating hTs factories here. In the lower
story are two stores aud a tin-shop. The building con-
tains also a public hall, with a seating capacity of 250 to
300. The present proprietor is K. Adkins.

The Union School occupies a large two-story brick build-
ing, erected in 1876. Its cost, including the furnace, was
$6000. The school has three departments, — primary, in-
termediate, and advanced, — with an average attendance of
about 175.

The teachers in May, 1878, were : Principal, Edward M.
Jones; Assistants, Fanny Petty, in charge of the
room in which are the primary and intermediate depart-
ments, and Miss Emma Mason, who has direct charge of
the pupils in the primary department. During the winter
term an assistant is employed in the advanced department.
The oflBcers of the school board are : President, William
H. Barnett; Clerk, A. J. Rhodes.

Fell// Post, No. 89, G. A. U., which formerly existed

here, has been disbanded. It was named in honor of
Sergeant William Petty, of the 14Gth Infantry, who was
missing and supposed to have been killed at the battle of
the Wilderness, Va., May 5, 1864, as he was never heard
from afterwards.

Clayville lies in the narrow valley of the Sauquoit, with
steep, rugged hills rising high on either side. It bears every
evidence of being a manufacturing town of no little import-
ance. A very fine cemetery has been laid out to the
northward of the village, and is a beautiful spot in which
to lay the remains of the dear departed. The village con-
tains at present four stores of various descriptions, two
millinery and dressmaking establishments, and the usual
number and variety of mechanic shops common to places
of this size.


This place lies over the hill to the eastward of Clayville,
and is the centre of considerable manufacturing interests.
The first settler in the locality was a man named Cutler,
who came here previous to 1800, and put up a " dish-mill,"
or mill for making wooden bowls, on the " trout brook"
which flows through the place. David Holman, Jr., —
father of Hiram Holman, now a resident of the village, —
settled about 1812, and purchased the property owned by
Cutler, who moved to the vicinity, half a mile below, where
he also had a " dish-mill ;" a factory for turning hubs being
at pre.sent located at the same place, owned by J. B.
Davis, and operated by himself and his son, I. E. Davis,
who also do builders' and cabinet turning and job-work.
Cutler finally left the town.

Several families named Potter moved in soon after Mr.
Holman. The latter built a small grist-mill on the stream,
and a year or two later a saw-mill also. He soon moved
his grist-mill farther up the stream, in order to give the
saw-mill more power, as the demand for lumber was so great
that he could not furnish it fast enough with the limited
power. After a few years he put in a mill near his saw-
mill for cleaning clover-seed, and had custom from localities
as far away as Litchfield, Herkimer Co.

After Hiram Holman became of age he purchased of his
father the upper water-privilege, and about the same time
the latter sold a lot to George Mix and Joseph Howe, who
built a distillery where the foundry of A. H. King now
stands. After his father's death Hiram Holman purchased
the old saw-mill and operated it, and in time became the
owner of the remainder of his father's property (originally
75 acres, then about half diminished by sale to diff'erent
parties). After timber became scarce the saw-mill was
abandoned and the power transferred to the present fur-
nace. The old clover-mill had been made into a distillery
(as mentioned), having additions built to it, and was some
time afterwards burned down, it being then the property of
a man named Briggs, who soon rebuilt it. While the dis-
tillery was in operation Hiram Holman ground from 10,000
to 12,000 bushels of grain for it annually, beside doing cus-
tom grinding. He finally purchased the establishment, and
in turn sold it to Adam Steele, who put the furnace in op-
eration. Its present manufactures are plow-castings, pipe-
skeins for wagons, stove-plate, etc., and a patent grapple
hay-fork. Six to eight hands are employed.



On the upper mill-privilege now stands a cabinet-shop,
owned by Cooper & Son, who employ from three to five
hands and do a good business. At one time a shop was in
operation here for manufacturing blacksmiths' drills, and

Online LibrarySamuel W DurantHistory of Oneida County, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers → online text (page 141 of 192)