Yates County, New York
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John C. SCHEETZ
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg 495 - 496
SCHEETZ, John C., was born in Norristown, Montgomery Co., PA., on the 23rd of January, 1813 and was the eldest of a family of 5 children. His parents were Daniel and Sarah SCHEETZ, who were born in the same county and State. His grandparents on his mother's side were natives of the same county and State, but his grandparents on his father's side came from Germany. When a boy he went to school and received a common school education.
His father owned a grist mill nad farm and in 1831, young SCHEETZ went to work in the mill and continued there until the spring of 1837, when he left home and came to Penn Yan, NY. Ezekiel CASNER and Aaron REMER then owned the mill known as the Wagner mill and he went to work for them and continued in their employ until the death of Mr. CASNER in October 1882.
When they came into possession of the mill the machinery was all wood and pretty well used up (having been built in 1824), so that very soon they were obliged to make a completer repair, which they died in 1846, substituting iron in place of the wood machinery, and adopting all the late improvements at time. The dam and flume were all of wood and as the timber was beginning to decay and hardly to be depended upon to hold back the waters of the lake, they decided to construct a stone dam and flume, which they did in 1860 in connection with Jeremiah S. JILLETT, who then owned the mill on the south side of the stream.
On the 27th of October, 1841, Mr. SCHEETZ married Mary PUGH, daughter of Michael and Jane PUGH, residents of Montgomery Co., PA., and went to housekeeping in Penn Yan, NY. The fruits of this marriage were 3 children, two boys and one girl. The boys died when quite young, but the girl grew up to womanhood and married Leonard A. CLARK, of East Saginaw, Mich. In the summer of 1872 his wife was taken sick and on December 22, died at Avon Springs, NY, where she had gone for treatment. In 1875, October 5, Mr. SCHEETZ married Lizzie S. YERKES, daughter of William and Sarah YERKES, all residents of Norristown, PA. No children by this marriage. In 1883 they sold the mill toe Messrs. Russel, Fox & Co., and since then Mr. SCHEETZ has not been engaged in any active business.
During his residence in Penn Yan he had held a number of town offices, such as trustee of the village, member of the Board of Education, and was several times elected supervisor of the town of Milo, and served in that capacity nearly all through the war, being most of the time chairman of the board. Mr. SCHEETZ is a stockholder and director in the First National Bank of Penn Yan, and he was the first president of that bank.
Mr. SCHEETZ has been as is still one of the most substantial men of this county, his word being as good as his bond, and has the respect and esteem of all who have the pleasure of knowing him.
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg 488
SHELDON, Eli, was born in Suffield, Hartford County, Conn., on the 6th day of November 1799. He was the son and eldest of ten children born to Eli and Cynthia SHELDON. The parents were poor and had not the means to provide for their children either a suitable education or to establish them in any business. Eli, our subject, was early put to work at whatever he could find to do, and so passed the years prior to his majority. When a young man he came to New York State, living for a time in Cayuga County, but afterward and in 1819 coming to the little village of Penn Yan. Here he found employment in the store of William BABCOCK, then the leading merchant of the locality.
Young Eli SHELDON proved himself to be an honest, industrious and capable employee, whose service was devoted to his employer’s interests, while he at the same time was learning by absorption and observation the rules and principle which were the foundation of his subsequent success and fortune. Mr. BABCOCK had the greatest faith in Eli’s integrity and straightforward honesty, and placed him for a time in charge of a branch store at or near the village of Bath. On returning to Penn Yan, we find him the partner of his former employer, under the firm name of Babcock & Sheldon. By this time our subject had saved a sum sufficient to purchase a partnership interest in the business and during the continuance of their relations, while Mr. BABCOCK was the ostensible head of the firm, his young partner was the active business man of the house. At a little later period, we find Mr. SHELDON the senior member of the firm of Sheldon & Co., doing a general merchandise trade at the northeast corner of what is now Main and Head streets, and whose advertisement in the old Yates Republican informed the public at large that the stock of the firm included a general assortment of domestic, English and East and West India goods. This was in 1824, and although Eli SHELDON was then but twenty-five years of age, he was nevertheless the leading proprietor of the largest and best stocked stores of the county.
Just how long Mr. SHELDON remained in active business live as merchant is now quite hard to determine, but as his means increased he gradually drifted into other channels, dealing in grain, buying lands, notes, mortgages and other securities; in fact, in any investment that promised a just and substantial return, found in him a ready operator. His perceptive facilities were keen and incisive, and his judgment accurate. Therefore he was successful and built up for himself and his family a substantial fortune. But he was not niggardly, nor did he ever exact from the debtor one penny beyond his just due. And in this even he was temperate, often extending the time for payment beyond the day in order to accommodate his friends and neighbors.
Eli SHELDON was himself a frugal liver, but he was also a generous provider for his family and relations. He gave his aged mother a comfortable support through her declining years, and likewise gave to his sisters and other members of his gamily and relatives large sums of money to provide for maintenance or to establish them in business. He was a public-spirited man, interested in every measure having for its end the welfare of the village or county, and while possibly not a leader in such enterprises, his contributions were always generous and given ungrudgingly. He was not a church member, but always gave liberally to the several church and religious societies of the village. In politics Mr. SHELDON was an old time Whig, and afterward became identified with the Republican party upon its organization. He had not political ambition, his interest being that of citizen and tax payer and not of the office seeker. Still, he was presidential elector in 1848.
Eli SHELDON was twice married; first to Sophia H., the daughter of James SMITH, of Benton, by whom he had one child, William Babcock SHELDON, now a resident of Penn Yan. Sophia SMITH SHELDON died March 5, 1842. His second wife, whom he married September 14, 1843, was Sarah S., daughter of Morris F. SHEPPARD. She died October 5, 1849, leaving no children. Eli SHELDON died June 3, 1865. William B. SHELDON, the only child of Eli and Sophia SHELDON, was born July 27, 1839. On the 20th of October 1864, he married Caroline W. LONG, daughter of Nathaniel R. and Caroline S. LONG, of Penn Yan, formerly of New York, and by whom he has two children: Ida B., born June 3, 1870 and Eli, born August 3, 1873.
Charles Clement SHEPPARD
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg. 524 - 525
SHEPPARD, Charles Clement - In an early chapter of this work will be found an extended account of the family of which MR. SHEPPARD is a member. He was born in Penn Yan, June 9, 1808, and was the son of Hon. Morris F. SHEPPARD, a pioneer of prominence of Yates County. His early life was passed in his native village, attending the local schools, and arriving at the age of maturity he became identified with the mercantile business of Penn Yan. Of his business career as a merchant for many years, and his subsequent successful operations in the purchase, development and sale of valuable well placed lands in the Western States, the large fortune he accumulated is an evidence of his prudence, industry and foresight. Mr. SHEPPARD was never a seeker for office and place, but was always an influential partisan. In early life a Whig, then active and heroic in the advocacy and substantial advancement of Republican success and supremacy, and a loyal friend of the Union when its integrity was in peril. In 1860 he was a delegate to the National Republican Convention which nominated Abraham LINCOLN for presidency. In 1857, by a legislative act, he was made a member of the original board of education of Penn Yan, continuing by election as such until 1874, and for nine years was president of the same.
Mr. SHEPPARD was an exemplary man in his daily life, a model of excellent personal, business and covenant relations and performances. He was a good citizen, with his face and force ever in the higher and better direction; frank in the expression of his opinions, invariably sound, and feeless in the discharge of duty. He united, at an early age, with the Church of Christ and his place in all of its worship was never vacant, his voice for his heavenly Master was never silent, and his ample purse was ever open. To the beautiful new Presbyterian Church edifice of this village, he was a very large contributor. Cheerfully, yet modestly, in the congregation of the people, he volunteered his timely aid, and on recording his large donations on a subsequent day, he closed his eyes, suffused with tears, while he silently prayed for God’s direction and blessing on the proposed religious home. For years he gave largely to church, missionary, educational, and benevolent causes, and no deserving local charity ever failed to receive his prompt, discreet and liberal response. Peculiar in his ways and methods, as reformers usually are, in his intercourse with his fellow men, we believe that no honest, appreciative person ever listened to his critical counsel and pertinent suggestions without feeling in his heart that he was right, and faithful and sincerely desirous that better examples and purer purposes should be pursued. Many of his original trite sayings will long be remembered.
fellow men, we believe that no honest, appreciative person ever listened to his critical counsel and pertinent suggestions without feeling in his heart that he was right, and faithful and sincerely desirous that better examples and purer purposes should be pursued. Many of his original trite sayings will long be remembered.
Mr. SHEPPARD died January 17, 1888 and of his family the following service him, viz: John S., a prominent and influential citizen of Penn Yan; Capt. Morris F., president of the Yates County National Bank of Penn Yan; and Mrs. Sarah F. S. ARMSTRONG. All over the State and country the death of Mr. SHEPPARD, so long identified with Penn Yan, the center of his lifelong activities and generous benefactions, was received with regret and impressive consideration. Life is judged by its results, and his was known to all.
Morris F. SHEPPARD
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg. 521 - 524
SHEPPARD, Hon. Morris F., was born at Germantown, near Philadelphia, November 28, 1774, being the son of Moses SHEPPARD and Hannah FLETCHER. They were members of the society of Friends or Quakers. The ancestors of Moses SHEPPARD had settled sometime about 1675 at Salem, NJ., and afterwards some of the family had made homes for themselves in the prosperous colony which had, in the meanwhile, been established under the auspices of William PENN.
In the year 1800, Mr. SHEPPARD, in company with two or three others, made an exploring expedition on horseback to the Genesee country, and finally found their way to the spot where now is the village of Penn Yan. So pleased was he with the country, that he at once made preparations for emigrating and settling there. In 1801, with a hors and cart, he again made the journey, bringing with him what personal property he possessed, and the implements of his trade. Arriving at his destination, he purchased of Abraham WAGENER, ten acres of land on the east side of Main street, bounded on the north by Head street and embracing Jacob’s Brook. Here he established a tannery, one of the first, if not the first, in the county, certainly the first within the limits of Penn Yan. The same year he married Rachel SUPPLEE, daughter of the widow of Peter SUPPLEE. Mrs. SUPPLEE had come to this country about 1797, in company with her brother, David WAGENER. Mr. SHEPPARD and Rachel SUPPLEE were married October 22, 1801, and erecting a small log house with two ground rooms, they kept house in one end, while the other was used as a finishing shop for the tannery.
Mr. SHEPPARD was an active and useful citizen of the young village until his death, which occurred November 18, 1846. The following newspaper notices, written by men who knew him well, will give a good idea of his career and character.
From Daily Telegraph, Thursday, November 19, 1846.
“Died in this village, last evening, after an illness of a week’s duration, Hon. Morris F. SHEPPARD, aged seventy-two years.
“The deceased was one of the founders of Penn Yan, as well as one of the earliest settlers on this now fertile region of country. He spread his tent in the then wilderness, and not far from the spot where his remains now lie, over fifty years ago. He has lived and participated in the active bustle of business enterprise and improvement, and seen as assisted in making the waste places become beautiful gardens, and the “Hazel Copse” become one of the most thrifty and prosperous villages of Western New York. He enjoyed through life the esteem and confidence of his fellow citizens in an eminent degree, and was frequently called upon by them to fill important stations of public trust. His labors in the legislature for several successive session were appreciated beyond the bounds of the county that honored him by its suffrage. In all the relations of live, public and private, he discharge the obligations imposed upon him with credit to himself and his constituency. He was a kind husband, and affectionate father, and an honest man. Those who knew him best and longest, loved him most. And now that he has been gathered by the great destroyer of us all, ripe and full of years, there are many outside of the circle of his family and kindred who will sincerely mourn his departure, and long cherish a remembrance of the many excellent traits of the character of Morris F. SHEPPARD. From the earliest dawn of the temperance reformation to the day of his departure, that glorious cause has no truer advocate.”
From Yates County Chronicle of March 5, 1874.
“It may neither be inappropriate nor unprofitable to offer a few remarks respecting the father and family of the late deceased George A. SHEPPARD. They may awaken interesting reminiscences. Half a century ago, Morris F. SHEPPARD, esq., then in the prime of live, was one of the prominent and enterprising citizens of Penn Yan. His children by his wife, Rachel, were George A., Sarah F., John S., Charles C. and Susan. The father and sons have been prosperous, yea more than prosperous, in their business affairs, by reason of their economical, industrial correct and temperate habits. Of said children, Charles C. SHEPPARD now alone survives.
“Morris F. SHEPPARD came to this place at an early day from Pennsylvania, and commenced business as a tanner and currier. In addition to taking care of his own affairs, he was soon and frequently called upon by his fellow citizens to attend to theirs. Sometimes a couple of neighbors would come to him to settle their little difficulty, but oftener to call on him to become their servant in official capacities, reaching from magistrate to member of Assembly. He represented Yates County in the State legislature during the sessions of 1828-30, with honor to himself, and credit to his constituents, taking rank among the foremost men there. And although a man of outspoken political sentiments, he could always poll a vote in excess of his party ticket. He, with others, exerted all his powers to promote the prosperity and ascendancy of this upper or north portion of the village, until it was forced to succumb to the water power, the canal, the bank and the business of the town or south portion of Penn Yan. There are yet a few left who can look back and recall the portly form and genial face of Morris F. SHEPPARD, and the many pleasant hours thy have passed with him in his office listening to his President Lincoln-like sayings, and to words of interest and value to themselves on very many subjects. His advice in business matters, when called for, was always cheerfully and frankly given, and it evidenced wisdom in the hearer to profit by it.”
In addition to the matters already spoken of, it is of interest to note that during the War of 1812, Mr. SHEPPARD was associated with the organization of an independent military company, called “Silver Grays,” under the captaincy of Truman SPENCER, and was called out at the attack on Sodus Point. In 1818 he built a grist-mill on sucker Brook, located in what is now known as Cornwell’s gully. This, through a failing water supply, was soon rendered an unprofitable speculation. In 1830 he built the stone house on Main street, now owned by Mr. Jeptha POTTER, and this we are told was at that time regarded, “as approaching the extensive, if not the extravagant.”
Franklin Ellsworth SMITH
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg. 520 - 521
SMITH, Franklin Ellsworth, an early merchant of Penn Yan, was born in that village, April 6, 1824. His father, Eben SMITH, was a prominent merchant and influential citizen of Penn Yan for nearly a half of a century. His mother, Miss Eliza ELLSWORTH, was a sister of Judge S. S. ELLSWORTH. At the age of fourteen our subject entered his father’s hardware store as clerk. He continued in this business till 1852, alone and in partnership with his father. With others, Mr. SMITH was largely interested in the building of Elmira, Canandaigua and Niagara Falls Railroad, which enterprise proved not to be a financial success. Soon after disposing of his hardware business he engaged in the clothing trade, in which he remained until July 8, 1884. Mr. SMITH was known as an upright and useful citizen, an active supporter of public improvement, conspicuous for his fair dealing, and had a deep interest in all that concerned the welfare of his native town and county. He was one of the most active and influential friends of the Penn Yan and New York Railroad. H was twice elected supervisor of the town of Milo, and was jealously watchful of the interests of the town and faithful to his trust, as he was in every department of life; for in those respects he was as conscientious and just as he was frank and open-hearted. As a husband and father he was mindful of the responsibilities which those relations imposed, and as a member of the Christian church, the Presbyterian – he was alike responsive to his obligations, rarely missing its meetings for public worship, and string ever to walk by the rules of his high calling in sincerity and truth. He was for many years connected with the Masonic fraternity, and filled very acceptably many high positions in that order. He married in 1869 Emily, daughter of Rev. Heman DYER, of New York. Their only child is Emily Stewart SMITH.
Mr. SMITH after a long and protracted sickness, died January 11, 1886, and in his death Penn Yan, lost one of her most influential and enterprising merchants.
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg. 491
SOUTHERLAND, Hon. John, son of Alexander and Mariah (VAN DUSER) SOUTHERLAND, was born June 11, 1813 in Potter, NY. He was educated at the common schools and has been a dealer in agricultural implements for the last twenty-five years. In politics a Democrat, Mr. SOUTHERLAND has always taken an active interest in the affairs of this town and county. He has held the office of assessor two years, supervisor one year, justice of the peace four terms and was elected member of the General Assembly of this State in 1876. He is a member of Milo Lodge, of Penn Yan. F. and A.M. He is also director and stockholder in the First National Bank of Penn Yan. He married first, Elmira, daughter of Oren BATES of Potter, February 18, 1836, and they had three children, Jane, who married Warner P. COLE; Eliza S., who married John N. CLARK and Oren B. (deceased). His wife died February 27, 1850 and Mr. SOUTHERLAND married second, Martha, daughter of Peter FURGUSON of Seneca, NY. She died in April 1890.
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg. 510 - 512
SPICER, James, one of the prominent and best known lawyers of the Yates County Bar, was born in the town of Barrington, Yates County, October 23, 1827. His father, the late John SPICER was an extensive farmer, lumber dealer and builder of mills. He was an active politition (sic) and had a strong hold on the local Democratic party.
In his early life the son worked with the laborers on his father’s farm. His early educational advantages were confined to the winter term of the “District” school. (Mr. SPICER is eminently a self-made man. Whatever he is he has made himself). After following several kinds of business he finally settled down to the study of medicine in the office of his father-in-law, the late Dr. Richard HUSON. By the advice of the late Dellazon J. SUNDERLIN, he abandoned the study of medicine and directed his attention to the legal profession, which was much more to his taste. He read law in the office of Mr. SUNDERLIN, and was admitted to the bar in 1862, since which time he has steadily applied himself to the duties of his profession for which he has a natural adaptation. He has made a fine record as advocate, and is a skillful cross-examiner. Sometimes in his examinations he is very severe and he makes it very uncomfortable for the witness.
He is particularly careful and painstaking in the preparation of his cases for trial. His briefs are always full and complete. This is one of the secrets of his success.
Mr. SPICER, speaking of the commencement of his legal practice, tells the story of the trial of his first suit. He says two parties that were in law each wanted the services of Mr. SUNDERLIN. They were both personal friends and he declined serving either, and advised the parties to employ the boys (students); M. J. SUNDERLIN was a student in his father’s office. The proposition was accepted and “the boys” had a severe legal tussle. SPICER gained the suit and received two dollars for his fee. This was the beginning of a long and successful legal practice.
After concluding his studies and his admission to the bar, Mr. SPICER opened an office in Dundee. The business was successful and from the commencement of his practice he has taken a high position in his profession.
In the year 1880 the Dundee National Bank was organized and Mr. SPICER was elected president, and has held the office until the present time.
In addition to his other business he has the management of a large farm. His early home training gave him a love for agricultural pursuits and he takes great pride and pleasure in raising fine sheep and other stock.
He has a fine residence in Dundee, which he occupied for some years; but preferring a rural life he moved on his farm where he can give direction and oversight to his farming operations. His farm is situated one half mile north of the village line and was known as the Longwill farm. Since it came in his possession he has greatly improved and beautified it and it is now considered the model farm of the county.
In his farming business his wife is a very efficient helpmate. Mr. SPICER was twice married. His first wife was Katharine, daughter of Dr. Richard and Rebecca HUSON, in 1843, who died many years ago. They had born to them two daughters, Mary and Rebecca, only one (Mary) now living. His second marriage was to Martha SHARP, in 1861, who is still living. Mr. SPICER has had for partners, Judge HURD, Hiland G. WOLCOTT, Charles BAKER, Hon. H. STRUBLE. His residence, with the exception of one year in Penn Yan, has been in Dundee since 1845.
paraphrased from the History & Directory of Yates Co., NY, Vol. 1, pub 1873 p. 723-5.
Adam Struble (b. 5 JUL 1785, in Bartleyville near Flanders, Sussex Co., New Jersey and d. 22 OCT 1867, Town of Milo, Yates Co., NY) was a native of New Jersey, where he married 5 JUL 1807 Mary Dean (b. 11 MAR 1790 in NJ and d. 30 AUG 1869 in Milo, NY). His ancestors were from Holland. In 1814, they immigrated from that state on foot, and bringing three young children, came to this town, driving all the way a red heifer which was their only
Sidney Struble (b. 20 OCT 1816) married Harriet Adams, a descendant of the Adams family of Massachusetts. She was a teacher in Starkey. They resided in Michigan and have several children. Their son Lambert, was a Methodist
from History of Yates Co., by L. C. Aldrich, Pub. 1892 Pg. 503 - 504
STRUBLE, Hon. Hanford, was born in the town of Milo, Yates County, on May 13, 1842, and was the eldest of three children born to Levi and Mary (MISNER) STRUBLE. He was also the grandchild of Adam and Mary (DEAN) STRUBLE, pioneers of Milo.
The young life of our subject was spent on the farm, in the common schools of the town, and at the old Starkey Seminary. In 1858 he entered the sophomore class at Genesee College, but left that institution to take charge of the Dundee Academy, as its principal, where he was during the first year of the war of 1861-65. In July 1862, he enlisted in Co. B., 148th Regiment, NY Volunteer Infantry, and in the designation of company officers, was chosen for lieutenant. After a few months Lieutenant STRUBLE was appointed to a position on the staff of Gen. Egbert VIELE, with the rank of major, and served as provost-marshal of the city of Portsmouth, Va. Later he served in the same capacity at Norfolk, on the staff successively of General BARNES, POTTER, WILD and VOGES, and still later as permanent aide on the staff of Gen. George F. SHEPLEY. In February 1865, he was on duty before Richmond, under General WEITZEL and entered the city with President LINCOLN on the 3rd day of April following. Major STRUBLE was mustered out of service in December 1865.
Returning from the South, our subject commenced a course of law study in the office of James SPICER, of Dundee, where he continued one year, then entering the Albany Law School and from which, he was graduated in the spring of 1868, receiving the much coveted “sheepskin” from the General Term of the Second Department, at Albany. Counselor STRUBLE at once commenced the practice of law at the county seat of Yates County, in partnership with A. V. HARPENDING, a leading lawyer of the place. In 1871 Mr. HARPENDING died, after which Mr. STRUBLE continued practice alone until was formed the law partnership with the late Charles BAKER, followed by another of the same character with James SPICER, the latter being formed in 1877, and continuing until Mr. SPICER moved to Dundee to organize the National Bank at that place.
In the fall of 1869, and again in 1872, Mr. STRUBLE was elected district attorney for Yates County. In 1874 and 1875 he presented the county in the lower house of the State Legislature. In the fall of 1883 he was elected county judge and surrogate, and re-elected in 1889 at the expiration of his first term of office.
It will be observed from this that Judge STRUBLE has not been a passive actor in Yates County politics, and he himself would hardly care to be known in that uncertain political relation. As a mater of fact, Hanford STRUBLE is a frank, outspoken and aggressive Republican, and one whose voice has been heard on the stump in every town in the county, and occasionally beyond its borders. On all the political questions of the day he entertains clear and well settled convictions, and is perfectly free in the expression of them; yet he is never abusive of the opposite party, its candidates or principles. And what is true of him in the field of politics, will also apply to his character as a lawyer, or as a judge upon the bench. In the latter capacity especially is Judge STRUBLE considerate of the rights of the contending parties, his rulings fair and his charges clear and close to both facts and law.
Hanford STRUBLE commenced his political career almost immediately upon his admission to the bar. In 1868 and 1869 he was clerk of the Board of Supervisors. In the fall of the latter year he was chosen chairman of the Republican County Committee, and held that position six or eight years. The same fall he was elected public prosecutor for that county, serving thereafter two full terms; was next elected to the Assembly, followed by his final elevation to the County Court bench, as has been narrated.
On June 30, 1868, he was married to Laura BACKUS, the daughter of Clinton C. BACKUS, of Canandaigua. Of this marriage one child, Clinton Backus STRUBLE has been born.
YATES COUNTY'S BOYS IN BLUE, 1861-1865 : by
HANFORD STRUBLE, of Milo, was enrolled and mustered at Geneva Aug. 29, aged 22 years. Mustered into the U. S. service as 1st Lieut., Co. B, to date from Aug. 29. From June, 1863, to September, 1863, both inclusive, detached on special duty at the office of the Provost Marshal at Norfolk, Va. Appointed aide-de-camp to Brigadier-General Barnes Oct. 5, 1863, and continued as such until April 30, 1864. May 2, 1864, appointed acting aide-de-camp on the
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