The History of New York State
Biographies, Part 50

Editor, Dr. James Sullivan

Online Edition by Holice, Deb & Pam



Many activities have crowded the life of Frank L. Wiswall, of Albany. He was born in the town of Colonie, Albany County, July 8, 1895, the son of Dr. Charles D. Wiswall, a veterinary dentist at Watervliet and Colonie, and of Mary E. (Lawton) Wiswall. He attended the public schools and the high school at Watervliet, after which he entered the Albany Law School and was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Laws, in 1916. He was admitted to the bar in March, 1917, and practiced in Troy until the following September, when he enlisted in the army, infantry branch. He was transferred to the Judge-Advocate General's department and assigned to headquarters of the 76th division, serving with that division throughout the war. He went overseas in July, 1918, and returned in December with the rank of regimental sergeant-major. From January, 1919 to May, 1920, he practiced law in Troy, in partnership with Chester Wood, under the firm name of Wood and Wiswall. In the fall of 1919 he was elected to the Assembly from the third District of Albany County as a Republican. In the fall of 1920, he was elected State Senator from the Thirtieth Senatorial Distract, and served one term. In May, 1921, he was elected chairman of the Albany County Republican Committee, and also held the office of county attorney, which he resigned in December, 1921, and continued in the Senate until December 31, 1922. He retained the chairmanship of the Republican County Committee until May, 1923, when he resigned. He practiced law independently until December, 31, 1921. The firm of Tobin, Wiswall & Walton began business on January 1, 1922, and on January 1, 1923, the firm of Tobin, Wiswall, Walton & Wood was formed with offices at No. 95 State Street, Albany. While it carries on a general law practice, the firm specializes in corporation law and Mr. Wiswall does considerable trial work.

He is a member of the American Bar Association, the New York Bar Association, the Albany County Bar Association, the Committee on Judicial Nominations, and also a trustee of the Albany Law School. Fraternally, he is affiliated with the Evening Star Lodge, No. 75, Free and Accepted Masons; Hudson River Chapter, No. 41, Royal Arch Masons; Bloss Council, of Troy; the Delta bodies of Scottish Rite Masons; and the Albany Sovereign Consistory, in which he has received the thirty-second degree. He also is a member of the Delta Chi Fraternity, the American legion, Fort Orange Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Albany Country Club, the Albany Club, the Wolfert's Roost County Club, the Lake Placid Club, the Albany Chamber of Commerce, and the Emanuel Baptist Church of Albany, of which he is trustee; the American Scenic and Historic Preservation Society, and the Thacher Park Committee; he is a director of the Albrass Company of Coxsackie, New York.

Frank L. Wiswall was married in Albany, August 28, 1924, to Clara Elizabeth Chapman, daughter of Clarence W. and Katherine (Sykes) Chapman, of Albany. They are the parents of one daughter, Elaine Joyce Wiswall, born August 24, 1925. Their home is at No. 365 State Street, Albany.


Ranking as a leading book and stationery establishment of the Hudson River Valley, the firm of Forsyth & Davis, Incorporated, of Kingston, New York, has long had as one of its outstanding representatives William Madison Davis, who has been active in the management for many years. The prestige that has attached to more than half a century of an honorable and progressive career in this line of business shared by Mr. Davis, who for three decades has been identified with it. Mr. Davis is also actively interested in an automobile concern, in which the principals are the same as in the book firm. Recognition of his standing in the stationer's trade has been made through his election to membership in the leading associational interests of his lines in the country.

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Born in Kingston, William Madison Davis is the son of L. G. H. Davis. He received his education in the local grammar schools and at Ulster Academy, now merged into the Kingston High school. Upon the death of his father, he began his business career with the Newark Lime and Cement Company, and was employed as bookkeeper in their large general store for two years.

Mr. Davis' connection with the book and stationery business began with his employment by Forsyth & Wilson, as the firm then was known, in the capacities of bookkeeper and salesman. For ten years he was a member of their organization, and resigned to become employment manger of the Remington Typewriter Company, in New York City, maintaining this association for two years.

On January 1, 1898, the firm of Forsyth & Wilson was re-organized, following the retirement of Robert Wilson, and the style was changed to Forsyth & Davis, Mr. Davis becoming the new member and succeeding Mr. Wilson in the management. During this latter regime, the firm has made notable strides to the point where it is known as one of the most complete and intelligently managed book and stationery establishments in the extensive territory which it so efficiently serves. Much of the credit for this fine status is due to Mr. Davis' knowledge of the business and his managerial ability.

The settled vogue of the automobile led to the organization, in 1910, of the Forsyth & Davis Motor Company, which for many years has been the local representative of some of the leading automobile manufacturers. Among other well-known makers in the trade; they are representative of the Pierce-Arrow Motor Car company, and the Oakland Motor Car Company, the latter a division of the General Motors Corporation.

Mr. Davis is a member of the American Booksellers Association, the national Stationers Association, and the Wholesale Stationers Association. His fraternal relations are with Kingston Lodge, No. 10, Free and Accepted Masons, and his religious fellowship is with the First Reformed Dutch Church, which he has served as deacon, and to whose works he is a consistent contributor. His principal social organization is the Kingston Club.

William Madison Davis married, May 15, 1906, Elizabeth Deyo, daughter or Dr. Charles W. and Cornelia (Wurts) Deyo. Their only child, William Madison Davis, Jr., was born, January 7, 1907. He attended the Kingston city schools, inclusive of Kingston High school, and was graduated from the Irving School at Tarrytown-on-the-Hudson. At the age of nineteen he met an untimely death by drowning, when a student of the Duncan School at Patchogie, New York, July 11, 1926. He was a member of the First Reformed Dutch church, of Kingston.


Deciding upon a business career without availing himself of university training, Edwin William Elmore, of Oneonta, after graduation from the public schools of Albany, the Albany Academy and Riverview Academy, at Peeskill, began his work in the office of his father, William O. Elmore, with headquarters in Albany, and a branch in Chicago, dealer in grain. His life was successful, his reputation for high citizenship was widespread, his loss mourned by a wide circle of close friends and a multitude of acquaintances. His death occurred in Oneonta, April 15, 1927.

Edwin William Elmore, was born in Mattawan, Michigan, August 7, 1868, being brought to Albany, by his parents seven years later. His father, William O. Elmore, born in North Bergen, New York, in 1839, and die in 1920, was a son of Jonathan Elmore. His mother was Emily (Gilman) Elmore, born in Genesee County, New York State, in 1836, died in Oneonta, New York, in 1915, a descendant of a colonial Connecticut family, her husband's ancestors having a historical record preceding the War of the Revolution, in which several of the men were engaged in the patriot army under General George Washington. The couple moved to Mattawan, Michigan, where three sons were born: 1. Guy. 2. Edwin W., of whom further., and 3. Earle. They returned to Albany in 1875, where the firm of Durant and Elmore was established, with branch offices in Chicago. They were active on the Chicago Board of Trade and were among the largest grain dealers in the country.

Edwin William Elmore received his early education in the public schools, and Albany Academy, Albany, New York, following which he attended the Greylock Institute at South Williamstown, Massachusetts. He then matriculated at the Riverview Academy in Poughkeepsie, New York, whence he was graduated with the class of 1888. Upon the completion of his scholastic training, Edwin W. Elmore associated with his father in the latter's estab-

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lishment at Albany, New York. After a period with the Albany house, he came, in 1895, to Oneonta to accept the management of the Oneonta Milling Company, of which establishment he was subsequently to become the owner, In 1903 he was selected to take charge of the Chicago office as manager, where he remained until 1912. He then returned to Oneonta, where he became manger of the grain milling plant of Durant and Elmore. Upon the retirement of his father, he bought the plant and conducted it until his death. In 1895 William O. Elmore purchased the mill from the Pruyn Brothers, and until the year 1910 ran the establishment under the corporation name of the Oneonta Milling Company. In that year a reorganization and incorporation took place, and since has been known as the Elmore Milling Company, with Edwin W., as president. On 1912 he was a member of the Committee of Three as grain expert, by which was drafted the grain transit tariff, which was accepted by the United States Interstate Commerce commission, and which is still operative on all railroad truck lines. He retained for several years after leaving Chicago, his membership on the Board of Trade there, and had an extensive acquaintance among grain dealers and brokers throughout the country. Three years before his death he built a fine residence on an eminence overlooking the city of Oneonta. During his life in Albany he was a member of the National Guard of the State and saw frequent emergency service. He was a Republican, but never south or held office, except as Commissioner of police of Oneonta, where he took a great interest in building up the force. He was president of the American Feed Manufacturers' Association and of the New York State Feed Manufacturers' Association. At school and college he was an ardent football player, devoted to tennis, and in his later years fond of golf, hunting and fishing. He was also a great reader and possessed a fine library, with many rare volumes on history and geography, of which he was especially fond. He belonged to the Albany club, the Chicago Athletic Association, was president of the Oneonta Country Club, a member of the Oneonta Rotary Club, and of Oneonta Lodge, No. 1312, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, also active in his membership of the Adirondack League Club.

Edwin William Elmore married, in Troy, October 24, 1894, Florence Cluett Cadby, of that city, daughter of John Harford Writen and Emily Ann (Cluett) Cadby. Their children were: 1. Earl Philips, born February 26, 1896. 2. Mabel, born June 9, 1900, now the wife of E. W. Rucker, Jr., of St. Louis, Missouri, and mother of one daughter, Florence Ann, born in 1922, and one son, E. E. Rucker (3), born in Oneonta.

Earl Philips Elmore, since the death of his father, has been assistant manger of the Elmore Milling company. He has a fine military service record, having enlisted in the French Army before the United States entered the World War. He was living in France at the time, for he had left Williams College for the continuance of his education abroad. Upon the arrival in France of the American Expeditionary Forces he was transferred to the army of his native land, commissioned a second lieutenant and assigned to the artillery. He was engaged in the battle of Chateau-Thierry, where he was wounded. Returning to America at the conclusion of the war, he took a special course at Cornell University, then joined his father in business.


Without doubt one of the most progressive of the younger generation of men in Steuben County, New York, is Dr. E. Walter Woodbury, a native son of Bath. His reputation for skill in his chosen profession ha extended far beyond the confines of his native place, and his participation in every forward movement for civic, welfare has placed him in the foremost ranks of those men whose constructive labors are vital factors in the upbuilding and advancement of their communities.

E. Walter Woodbury was born in Bath, Steuben County, new York, November 12, 1889, the son of Fred C. and Harriett B. (Monell) Woodbury, the former for many years a farmer in Bath, but now retired, and acting as deputy sheriff of Steuben County. Dr. Woodbury received his elementary education in the district schools of Campbell and then attended the high school at Bath, from which he was graduated in the class of 1909. Having in the meantime determined to take up dentistry for his life-work, and with this end in view, he accordingly matriculated at the University of Buffalo, and received from this institution the degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery, in 1915. The following year he taught practical dentistry at the college and, on September 1, 1916, established himself in the practice of his chosen profession in Bath. From the start success attended his efforts, and his practice, which in-

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cludes oral and prosthetic dentistry, and X-ray work, is of the most advanced type, bringing him the rewards which can only come from ability of a high order.

While in college, Dr. Woodbury was president of the Freshman Student Body, president of the Athletic Association, and manager of the baseball and football teams. He is now a director and secretary of the Salubria Realty corporation, secretary and director of the Bath Country Club, and president of the Chamber of Commerce, all of Bath; chairman of the Aviation Committee of the Finger Lakes Association; member of the Barretonian Society of the University of Buffalo, of which he is ex-president; president of the Steuben County Dental Society; and a member of the new York State Dental Association; charter member and past president of the Bath rotary Club; member of Xi Psi Phi Fraternity, Mu chapter, of Buffalo University; and honorary member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He is a Republican in politics, and has served as alderman of Bath for four years. His fraternal affiliations is with Steuben Lodge, No. 112, Free and Accepted Masons; Bath Chapter, No. 95, Royal Arch Masons, of which he is Past High Priest; Bath Council, Royal and Select Masters; and the Corning Consistory.

Unquestionably the outstanding feature to date in furthering the advancement of this section of New York State is the movement conceived by Dr. Woodbury of the transferring from State ownership to Federal ownership of the soldiers' Home at Bath. For many years the State of New York has supposed at Bath, New York, a home for Civil War veterans, and now that the ranks are fast being depleted, and the upkeep of the institution tremendous, Dr. Woodbury, in 1925, formed the idea of turning the home into a Federal government institution. He enlisted the cooperation of a few of the prominent men of New York State, those who are interested in bettering the conditions of the ex-service men, in aiding him to put through this measure, and, after considerable preliminary work, due in no small measure to the indefatigable energy and untiring efforts of these men, in 1928, a bill to this effect was successfully carried through both houses of the State Legislature and was duly signed by Governor Smith, March 9, 1928. A committee was then appointed, consisting of the governor was then appointed, consisting of the governor, attorney-general and adjutant-general, with the power to transfer this property to Federal government property with the understanding it was to be maintained and used for the aid and care of the veterans of the wars of the United States. This measure, which was subsequently placed before the legislature bodies at Washington, was duly passed by these bodies, and now this wonderful property has been turned over to the United States Government to aid and to give succor to the World War Veterans, all of which means not only a great benefit to Steuben County, but to the entire Western New York.

At Bath, New York, November 4, 1920, Dr. E. Walter Woodbury married Genevieve Schoch; they have no issue. The doctor finds needed recreation in golf, hunting and fishing, and indulges his fondness thereof when leisure permits. He is sincerely devoted to his profession, and great success in the years to come is predicted by his many friends.


Following in the footsteps of his father, when the time had arrived to chose his life-work, Mr. Jeffery decided upon a legal career, and ever since his admission to the bar, some ten years ago, he has been successfully engaged in the active practice of law, first in Buffalo and since 1925 in his native town, Lockport, Niagara County. A member of a family settled and prominent in that part of New York /state for six generations, he showed his inherited patriotism by almost two years' active military service as an officer during the World War. Interested and active in politics since his early manhood, he has served in the new York State Legislature, where he proved himself a very able and conscientious legislator, and since then has been a member of the Republican State committee. Though one of the younger members of the Niagara County bar, he enjoys a very high reputation in legal circles, while his pleasing personality and his many fine qualities have made him very popular in the several organizations to which he belongs, as well as in general amongst his fellow townsmen.

David e. Jeffery was born in Lockport, Niagara County, may 13, 1894, a son of D. Elwood and Kate M. (Beckett) Jeffery. The Jeffery family is one of the oldest in Niagara County, having first settled there six generation ago, and for three generations was engaged in farming. Mr. Jeffery's grandfather, David A. Jeffery, was one of the most progressive men of his days. He was very much interested in music, for which art he possessed considerable talent. Mr. Jeffery's father, D. Elwood Jeffery, was born in 1856, and, after

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having been educated in the public schools of Lockport, read law in the office of Holmes & Fitts, prominent Lockport attorneys, of that period., Admitted to the bar about 1885, he was engaged in active practice until his death in 1911. He also served at different times as clerk of the Surrogate Court, as assistant district attorney, and in several city offices. He was a member of various Masonic bodies, including the Ancient accepted Scottish Rite.

Mr. Jeffery was educated in the public schools of Lockport and, after having graduated from the local high school he entered Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts, from which he was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Arts in 1917. He then took up the study of law at the Albany Law School. Admitted to the bar upon the completion of his legal studies, he continued his career as a lawyer wit the Buffalo law firm of Kenefick, Coolae, Mitchell & Bass, with which he continued for five years. At the end of that period he returned to Lockport and in November, 1925, formed a partnership there with Donald S, Moore (q.v.), which has continued since then under the name of Moore & Jeffery, and with offices at No. 71 Main Street. The firm is one of the leading law offices in Niagara County and is engaged in general practice. Mr. Jeffery is a member of the Niagara County, New York, State and American Bar Associations. Ever since reaching manhood he has been actively interested in politics as a supporter of the Republican Party. During 1920-21 he was a member of the Lower House of the New York State Legislature, to which he represented the First Niagara District. During his service as an Assemblyman he was a member of the Cities, Labor and Industry, Banks, Conservation and Canals committees. Since leaving the Legislature in 1924 he has been a member from Niagara County of the Republican State Committee. Fraternally, he is affiliated with Niagara Lodge, No. 375, Free and Accepted Masons; Ames Chapter, No. 88, Royal Arch Masons; Cataract Lodge, No. 54, Independent Order of Odd Fellows; and Theta Delta Chi fraternity. Between his graduation from Williams College and his taking up the study of law, which period coincided with this country's participation in the World War, Mr. Jeffery saw almost two years of active military service. Entering Company 2, First Training Battalion, at Camp Dix, November 21, 1917, he was transferred to the Officers' Training Schools at Camps Custer and Lee, and was commissioned a second lieutenant of infantry in August, 1918. He then returned to Camp Dix and, after having served with various units, was mustered out with the rank of first lieutenant. He is a member of the American Legion. His religious affiliations are with the Protestant Episcopal Church.

Mr. Jeffery married, July 18, 1924, Marian Chase, of Buffalo, a daughter of George H. and Fannie (Blake) Chase. Mr. and Mrs. Jeffery are the parents of two children, Barbara Ellen and David E. Jeffery, Jr. The family residence is located at No. 60 Morrow Avenue, Lockport.


A graduate of Cornell College of Law, Mr. Moore has been engaged in the active practice of his profession at Lockport, Niagara County, ever since his admission tot he bar in 1895. There, in recent years, he has been associated in practice with David E. Jeffery, (see accompanying biography), one of the leading younger lawyers of Niagara County, their firm being especially well know for its extensive and successful Surrogate Court practice. Active for many years in civic and political affairs, Mr. Moore has held at different times several public offices and has also played an important part in the local affairs of the community. A resident of Lockport since the closing years of the last century, he is, of course, widely known throughout the community, where he enjoys to an unusual degree the respect, confidence and liking of his fellow townsmen.

Donald S. Moore was born in Halton County, Province of Ontario, January 21, 1869, a son of William and Catharine (Stewart) Moore, Mr. Moore's paternal grandparents, Ephraim and Grace (McNaughton) Moore, were respectively natives of Vermont and new York state and were among the first settlers of that section of Ontario, to which they came from the United States. Mr. Moore received his education in the public schools and at the Woodstock Collegiate Institute, after which he took up the study of law at Cornell University School of Law, where he was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Laws in 1894. Admitted to the New York bar in 1895, he located in Lockport, his legal preceptor having been Hon. John E. Pound, one of the leading attorneys of Lockport at that period. For the first few years of his active career as a lawyer he practiced alone, until, in 1905, he formed a partnership with Hon. Cuthbert W. Pound, now Associate

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Judge of New York Court of Appeals. This partnership continued until 1906, when Mr. Pound withdrew, having been appointed a Justice of the New York Supreme Court by governor Higgins. From then on until November, 1925, Mr. Moore again practiced alone. Since the latter date he has been the senior member of the law firm of Moore & Jeffery, with offices in the Bewley Building, Lockport, New York, his partner being David E. Jeffery. Mr. Moore is engaged in general practice, specializing in Surrogate Court practice and in this particular field is considered an authority. During 1921-25 he served as corporation counsel for the city of Lockport. For many years he has taken an active part in politics as a supporter of the Republican Party and during 1917-19 he was chairman of the Republican County Committee of Niagara County. He is a member of the Niagara County, New York State and American Bar associations, as well as of the Tuscarora Club; Niagara Lodge, No. 375, Free and Accepted Masons; and Cataract Lodge, No. 54, Independent Order of Odd Fellows; both of which latter have honored him by electing him as their presiding officer. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church.

Mr. Moore married, June 24, 1903, Elizabeth E. Morrison, of Iroquois, Province of Ontario. Mr. and Mrs. Moore have no children, and make their home in Lockport.


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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