The History of New York State
Biographies, Part 22

Editor, Dr. James Sullivan

Online Edition by Holice, Deb & Pam



The record of Elmer Horton Lemon, of Newburgh, and the principles for which he stands in public, professional and private life, have made him one of the leaders of Orange County. He is district attorney for that county now (1928) and inline for re-election at the close of his present term.

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Mr. Lemon was born in Metamoras, Pennsylvania, December 1, 1888, son of Thomas and Jennie I. (Scott) lemon, and grandson of William Lemon, who came from County Antrim, Ireland to the United States and settled at Scotchtown. His son, Thomas Lemon, born there in 1846, on a farm, was conductor for the Erie Railway, traveling out of Port Jervis, new York, until his early death at the age of forty-nine. Jennie I (Scott) Lemon, town of Bethel, Sullivan County, was the daughter of John Scott, who came from Connecticut, and his wife, Hannah (Jackson) Scott, whose family were among the first settlers in Bethel, to which they came from New England when Sullivan County was a wilderness. John Scott, a hunter and trapper to whom was given the nickname of "Bearfoot," died in 1910, at the age of eighty-eight.

After receiving his academic training at the Garfield (New Jersey) High School, and the Riverhead and Middletown High Schools, Elmer Horton Lemon graduated from Cornell University Law School in 1912, with the degree in Bachelor of Laws. That same year he was admitted tot he bar and practiced in Middletown until the outbreak of the World War, in which he participated, as detailed in the following paragraph. In 1919 he re-opened his offices, located then in Newburgh. Three years of successful practice established him in the popular favor and confidence and brought him appointment to the office of assistant United States attorney in 1922. Serving until December 31, 1924, he then advanced to the office of district attorney, to which he had been elected the preceding November, and re-elected November, 1927, for a term of three years. An Independent, he was the republican candidate in primary opposed to the machine candidate, and made a hot speaking campaign. Mr. lemon made constant war on bootleggers, his fight having the support of the churches. He is a member of the Republican County Committee.

On February 9, 1918, Mr. lemon enlisted as cadet pilot in aviation. He graduated from the United States School of Military Aeronautics at the University of Texas, at Austin, September 28, 1918, whence he went to the School of Fire at Fort Sill, for aerial observation. He was discharged December 20, 1918, with the tank of private, first class. He is Past Commander of the local post, county and district organization of the American legion, and helped organize several women's auxiliaries ion the county. He belongs to Newburgh Lodge, No. 309, Free and Accepted Masons, of which he is Junior Master of Ceremonies, to the Knights of Pythias; and to the Junior Order United American Mechanics. He is vice-president of the Historical Society of Newburgh Bay and the Highlands and trustee of the United Presbyterian Church.

On July 6, 1921, Elmer Horton Lemon married Alice Roth, of Middletown, daughter of Willis A. Roth, chief engineer of the State Hospital at Middletown, and of Ellen (Costigan) Roth. Children: 1. Marjorie, born April 14, 1923. 2. Willis Burton, born February 17, 1927.


The profession of optometry is ably represented in the practice of one of its most finished members, William L. Cook, of Jamestown. He is widely known among those similarly engaged in the State and nation, being affiliated with the leading associational interests of the profession. He holds the distinction of being the youngest member of the New York State board of Optometry, serving also as an advisory committeeman of that body.

Born in Lakeview, New York, February 7, 1891, William L. (W. Lester) Cook is the son of Fred and Mary A. )Barker) cook. He received his early training in the public schools of Fredonia and was graduated from the Rochester High School, class of 1911. From the Rochester School of Optometry he received his diploma at graduation in 1915.

Mr. cook made his entry in the practice of his profession at Rochester, as an assistant of Dr. George R. Bausch, with whom he continued for three years. At the end of that time he established himself in an office in the Chamber of Commerce Building at Rochester. In May, 1919, he removed to Jamestown, where he has built up a very large and desirable practice, being recognized as one of the most expert members of the profession.

Mr. cook's high standing in the profession has been giving further emphasis through his appointment, in 1927, to the State Board of Optometry for a term of five years. He was also made a member of that board's advisory board, a signal honor, since he is the junior of all his fellow members. His acquaintance in the profession is broadened through membership in the American, the New York State and the

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Southwestern Optometrics' Associations, and in the New York State and Pennsylvania Academy of Optometry. His fraternal affiliations are with Mount Moriah Lodge, No. 145, Free and accepted Masons, of Jamestown; the Scottish Rite Consistory, of Chester; and the Knight of Pythias. He is a member of the Kiwanis Club, and the Westminster Presbyterian Church at Jamestown.

William L. Cook married, January 22, 11916, Leah A., Almstead, of Rochester, and they have three children: William L., Jr.: Elizabeth Ellen, and Jane Lea. Mrs. Cook, a graduate of the Eastman School of Music at Rochester, is a musician of ability,. She is actively interested in women's affairs---president of the Mecca Social Club, a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, the Young Women's Christian Association, the Mozart Club, and the Delphian Society. Mr. and Mrs. Cook are socially prominent in Jamestown.


An outstanding figure in legal circles in New York State, where he has been engaged in active practice since 1876, is Judge Frederick Collin, who, with the exception of the time from October 1910, to January 1, 1921, when he served as associate judge of the Court of Appeals of the State, has been carrying on in his chosen profession in Elmira.

The American progenitor of the Collin family of which Judge Collin is a direct descendant was Paul Collin, son of Jean and Judith (Vasleau) Collin, who resided on the Isle of Re, opposite the city of Rochelle on the western coast of France. The family members were Protestants of the Huguenot denomination. In 1683 Paul and his wife fled from their home in Frank to Dublin, Ireland, to escape the political and religious persecutions which culminated with the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, in 1685. In 1686 they joined a company of Huguenots who migrated to Boston, Massachusetts, and from there removed to a tract of land near the northwest shore of Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island, which had already been purchased by the Huguenots. Because of persecutions and molestation's by their English neighbors, the little company, after four years of trials and tribulations, was dispersed and Pail Collin and his family removed to Milford, Connecticut, where the son, John Collin, married Hannah Merwin, who in turn had a son, David, who was a lieutenant in the Colonial Army which helped the English to conquer the French in Canada, during the middle part of the eighteenth century. David Collin, afterward became a prosperous farmer in Amenia, Dutchess County, New York. His son, David, married Lucy Bingham and settled in Hillsdale, and they had a son, Henry, who with his wife Nancy (McAlpine) Collin, migrated, in 1814 to a tract of land and a log cabin in Benton which had been acquired by David Collin. Four years later they built the original portion of the present Collin homestead in Benton where Judge Collin was born. Henry and Nancy (McAlpine) Collin had a son, Henry, who by his father's will was permitted an extensive education, therefore he attended the Academy at Fayetteville, new York, and the Homer Academy at Cortland, New York. His daughter, Emeline Collin, attended Grove Hall, the leading young ladies' boarding school at new Haven, Connecticut. She married Dr. William W. Welch of Norfolk, Connecticut, and to them was born William Henry Welch, M. D., LL.D., dean of the medical department of Johns Hopkins University, that distinguished discoverer of the Welch bacillus and one of the leading administrators of the Rockefeller Foundation, and often referred to as the dean of the medical profession in the United States. Henry Clark Collin, father of Judge Collin, married Maria Louise Park, daughter of Avery and Betsy (Meech) Park, who were born and married in New London, Connecticut, and in 1814 migrated to Burlington, Otsego County, New York, where they died in 1867, aged ninety-four and ninety-three years respectively. their ancestry goes back to the earliest English colonists in New England, prior to 1690, including Elder William Brewster, and all of lineal ancestors of Judge Collin's mother from 1690 to 1810 lived in Connecticut. His mother's oldest brother, Rev. Roswell Park, D. D., was graduated from Hamilton College and West Point, was the founder and first president of Racine College at Racine, Wisconsin, and was the father of Roswell Park, M. D., LL.D., of Buffalo, New York, the distinguished surgeon and bacteriologist

To Henry Clark and Maria Louise (Park) Collin was born eight children, six of whom are still living: 1. Rev. Henry park, graduated from Yale in 1865, was a Presbyterian clergyman in Oxford, New York, from 1873 to 1878, and in Coldwater, Michigan, from the rest of his life, passing away there on April 15, 1923, having nearly completed his eightieth year. 2. Hon. Charles Avery Collin, was graduated from Yale in 1866, was a practicing lawyer in

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Elmira, New York, from 1870 to 1887, one of the members of the first faculty of the Cornell University, 1887-1895; legal adviser to Governors Hill and Flower; a commissioner of Statutory Revision 1889-1895, and since 1895 he has engaged in practice as a lawyer in New York City, first as a member of the firm of Sheehan & Collin and later as senior member of the firm of Collin, Wells & Hughes, one of the leading law firms of New York City. 3. Frederick, of whom further. 4. George Collin was graduated from Yale in 1875; was engaged in the lumber business throughout his business career in Michigan and died of typhoid fever contracted in a Michigan lumber camp. 5. William Welch Collin is engaged in the lumber business in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and was graduated from Yale in 1877, in college he was a leader in athletics, specializing in rowing, having been a member of the famous "Bob Cook Crew" in his sophomore and junior years and captain of the varsity crew in his senior year. 6. Hon. Frank McAlpine Collin, the sixth son, has resided on the Collin farm in Benton all his lifetime and has many times been Supervisor of the town and a member of the State Assembly from Yates County. The two daughters were graduated from Packer Collegiate Institute, Brooklyn.

Frederick Collin, son of Henry Clark and Maria Louise (Park) Collin, was born in Benton, Yates County, New York, August 2, 1850. After completing his preliminary education he entered Yale University and was subsequently graduated from that institution in the class of 1871. Five years later he was admitted to the bar, and became partner of John A. Reynolds, of Elmira, in whose office he had completed his term of clerkship, under the firm name of Reynolds and Collin. In 1885, John B. Stanchfield was admitted to the firm, which became known as Reynolds, Stanchfield & Collin. Upon Mr. Reynolds' death in 1900, the other two partners continued on until October, 1910, when Mr. Collin was appointed a judge of the Court of Appeals and retired from the firm. This appointment by Governor Charles Evans Hughes was to fill a vacancy caused by the death of Judge Edward T. Bartlett, and in November of the same year, upon the nomination of each of the two great parties, Judge Collin was elected Associate Judge of the Court of Appeals for a term of fourteen years. On August 2, 1920, his seventieth birthday, he reached the age limit fixed by the constitution of the State, and he retired from the court on December 31, 1920. Subsequently he entered into partnership with the successors of his old firm under the present name of Stanchfield, Collin, Lovell & Sayles. Judge Collin is a director of the Chemung Canal Trust company, and has been president of Arnot Art Gallery, since its inception in 1911.

Early in his career he became interested in the affairs of the Democratic party and soon became an active member of this organization. In 1886 he was appointed by the Common Council of Elmira a member of its Board of Education, and remained a member under successive appointments until 1894, being president of the board from 1890 to 1894. In 1894 he was elected Mayor of Elmira, and two years later he was re-elected to that office, having convinced the people that he was the right man for their political leader, his abilities as a public man being ever enhanced by his sterling qualities. In 1898 he again became president of the Board of Education, a position he held until he resigned in 1910.

Judge Collin married (first), in 1877, Mary Palmer Yates who died in 1887. He married (second), in 1900, Mrs. Alice Atwater Bacon who died in April, 1917; and he married (third) July 7, 1918, Mrs. Margaret Fell Hallock of Elmira.

Such, in brief, is a summary of the life of Judge Frederick Collin, a most highly respected citizen of Elmira, New York, one who has never failed to give his earnest support to the welfare and advancement of his community, and one who conscientious work has brought to him well-earned success and the highest regard from his brother contemporaries, all of which are attributes well worthy of emulation.


Prominent in furthering general historical research in New York State, as well as in rousing public interest in history through lectures and published articles, Alexander Clarence Flick is State Historian of New York, after a successful career as an educator. His head-quarters are at Albany, New York.

Mr. Flick was born in Galion, Ohio, August 18, 1869, son of Enos H. and Elizabeth Jane (Johnson) Flick. The father was a builder and ranchman. The son prepared for college in the Otterbein Preparatory School, at Westerville, Ohio, graduated at Otterbein College in 1894, pursued his advanced studies at Columbia, from 1894 to 1896 as a graduate student and Fellow, and earned from Otterbein in 1897 the degree of master of Arts, and from Colum-

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bia University in 1899 that of Doctor of Philosophy. His alma mater bestowed on him in 1901 the honorary degree of Doctor of Literature In 1901-02, Dr. Flick studied abroad, an experience repeated in 1911-12, residing for two years in Germany, France, and England, and visiting almost every European country and the British Isles, as well as the Far East.

As an educator, Dr. Flick occupies a distinctive place in American pedagogical development. Not only was he head of the department of history and political science at Syracuse University from 1896 to 1923, but he gave life to his theme by organizing the University Travel-Study Club in 1902 which has enabled students of history and internationalism to visualize objects and places in countries significant in world history. DR. Flick was appointed State Historian and Director of the Archives in New York State in 1923, and remains in office. He has written many important books and articles, including the following: "Loyalism in New York during the American Revolution," 1904; "Short History of New York State," 1902; "Rise of the Medieval Church," 1909; The American Revolution in New York," 1926; and "Modern World History," 1926. He has lectured widely on historical subjects. Since 1923 he has edited the "Quarterly Journal" of the New York Historical Association.

His wide and diverse interests have associated Dr. Flick with many organizations. He is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society and the Phi Kappa Phi Fraternity, as well as the Free and Accepted Masons. His clubs are the Cosmopolitan, the University, of Albany, New York, and the Albany Country. He belongs also to the New York State Historical Association, the American Historical Association, and the American Academy of Political and Social Science. In politics he is an Independent; in religion a communicant of the Methodist Church. His favorite forms of recreation are fishing and travel.

In Syracuse, New York, June 10, 1899, Dr. Alexander Clarence Flick married Laura Tomlinson Page, daughter of John Williston and Minnie Minerva (Bassett) Page. Children: 1. Dorothy Jean, born in 1901. 2. John Williston, born in 1903. 3. Alexander Clarence, Jr., born in 1904. 4. Hugh Meredith, born in 1905.


A man who, through his newspaper publishing activities, is doing a considerable service to New York State and to the surrounding community, Carl Frederick Peterson of Port Henry has been especially instrumental in urging the necessity of a bridge over Lake Champlain. Being local manger in Port Henry for the Essex County Republican Company, he started a vigorous campaign for such a bridge in the Essex county "News," the paper which he represents in his home town, with the result that other papers picked up the subject and demanded a bridge. Mr. Peterson is the son of Gustav Fredolf and Augusta (Bernadine) Peterson, and was born in Port Henry, June 16, 1887. His father was engaged in the shipping business in Sweden before he came to American in 1881 and settled in Port Henry.

After having been educated in Port Henry High School, Carl Frederick Peterson was employed in different capacities until June, 1915, when he entered newspaper work with the Essex County Republican company as local manger. Then, in the World War, he served from December, 1917, to March, 1919, with the American Expeditionary Forces in France where he was in the Adjutant-General's Department, Service of Supplies. When he was discharged from the army, on March 25, 191, he returned to Port Henry and re-entered newspaper work. He served one year as Essex County Chairman for the Citizens' Military Training Camps, and since 1922 has been the relief commissioner for the New York Veterans' Relief Bureau in Essex County. He is part county commander of the Essex County branch of the American Legion, and Past Post Commander and charter member of the Clark-Patnode Post of the American Legion. In politics Mr. Peterson is a Republican, and has served on the Republican County committee. In April, 1923, Mr. Peterson first conceived the idea that a bridge over Lake Champlain was possible between Chimney Point, Vermont, and Fort Frederick, New York. Immediately he started agitation through the Essex County "News" for such a bridge, and it was not long before other papers likewise demanded a bridge over Lake Champlain. Mr. Peterson then enlisted different State, County, sectional and community civic and fraternal organizations in the campaign for a bridge and these organizations proceeded to impress upon the New York and Vermont legislatures the importance of the program suggested by Mr. Peterson. In 1925, the legislatures created a joint committee to study the feasibility of

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the project, and to consider possible sites, since other communities at the southern end of the lake were expressing by that time their desire for the bridge at their particular localities. The investigation in 1925 resulted in another in 1926. The State of New York then appropriated $25,000 for soundings and incidental expenses. On December 28, 1926, a final report was made recommending Chimney Point and Fort Frederick as the proper site for the bridge, and the report was submitted to the two legislatures soon after they convened in 1927. Mr. Peterson was secretary of the joint legislative commission. The two States have appointed commissioners to go ahead with the work of the bridge, the preliminary work of which his now under way and the bridge is to be completed early in 1929.


In addition to being a successful lawyer, Edward Easton is one of the most prominent and potential among the leaders of his party in Albany County, and he has done much to shape the political history of Northern New York. He is the son of Edward and Sarah Frances (Jones) Easton, born April 1, 1880, in Albany, New York. His father was a very successful and prominent lumber dealer who died in 1919; his mother a lineal descendent of Dutch pioneers in Albany, who is still living. Blest with a beneficent patrimony and with parents of ambition and breeding, Edward Easton received a fine, comprehensive education in the public schools of his community and prepared for his college course at Albany Boys' Academy whence he was graduated in the class of 1898. He then entered Yale University, graduating wit the degree of Bachelor of Arts in the class of 1902. In order to fit himself for his legal profession he entered the Albany Law School, graduating in 1904 with the degree of Bachelor of Laws. The same year he was admitted to the bar of the State of New York, and at once established himself in general practice in Albany, where for nearly a quarter of a century he has continued. His extensive legal knowledge, his recognized executive ability and unflagging energy, have made him not only a leading and popular member of the bar, but also one of the prominent figures in politics of Albany County.

From his early youth, Edward Easton showed an aptitude for politics and early became the recipient of honors in the Republican party. In 1912 and again in 1914 he was Civil Service commissioner of Albany, and from 1914 to 1916 served as Assistant Corporation Counsel of the city of Albany. From 1916 until 194 he was recorder of the city of Albany, and since 1923 he has been chairman of the Republican county committee of Albany. He is also a member of the Board of Water supply, and of the Albany Unconditional Republican club. Because of his influences in his party is widely recognized, his support is sought eagerly by every important political project in this section of the State. He is a member of the Albany County Bar Association, the Alpha Delta Phi Fraternity, Sons of the American Revolution, Society of Early Dutch Settlers of Albany, Fort Orange Club and the Albany Country Club. His fraternal affiliations are with the Free and Accepted Masons, and he attend St. Paul's Episcopal Church.

Edward Easton married in Albany, New York, June 8, 1904, Martha Van Antwerp Stanton, daughter of Josiah R. and Kate (Van Antwerp) Stanton. Mr. and Mrs. Easton are the parents of seven children: 1. Kate Van Antwerp. 2. Edward. 3. John Van Antwerp. 4. Mary Boyd. 5. Elcy Noble. 6. Edith. 7. Rufus. The Easton family have a summer home at Selkirk, New York, and a winter home in Albany.


The History of New York State, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., 1927

This book is owned by Pam Rietsch and is a part of the Mardos Memorial Library

Transcribed by Holice B. Young

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