Town of Torrey FamilySketches

Yates Co., New York

 

From the "History of Yates Co., NY",  byL.C. Aldrich,published 1892   

FamilySketches for Town of Torrey

 

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Pg. 619 - 620 

BIRKERT, Henry,son of Thomas, was born in Cumberland, England, June 10, 1827, where he spentthe first twenty years of his life.  Hisenergy and activity impelled him to emigrate to America at that early age. December 21, 1859, he married Matilda, daughter of William DEISHER, ofWaterloo, NY, and made his first permanent residence on a farm in the town ofTorrey.  He had previously owned ashare in the flouring mills at Dresden.  After three years experience at farming, which occupation was notcongenial to this tastes, he sold the farm, and in company with his nephew,Nathaniel WILLIS, again purchased the flouring mills. After a short term of partnership he purchased Mr. WILLISís interestand conducted the business alone to the close of his life. He was also an extensive dealer in lumber.  He conducted a large business in his mills, and a much largerbusiness in grain.  He was a quickand rapid thinker, and his judgment was seldom at fault.  He was kind and courteous and in his large dealing he had anextensive acquaintance with leading business men, who counted his death as apublic calamity.  He suffered lossesby fire and otherwise, but left his family a liberal competence. His name always headed the lists in the cause of charity and benevolence. He was in sympathy with the Episcopal church, and was an active aninfluential Free Mason.  He died May24, 1884.  Mrs. & Mrs. BIRKETThad five children, who are now living and two (twins) who died in infancy. William M. BIRKETT, oldest son of Henry BIRKETT, was born in Dresden,June 11, 1861 and was educated in his fatherís business. At his fatherís death, he and his brother, Clarence T., conducted thebusiness for the estate until 1886.  Thenthese brothers conducted the business the ensuing year (1887), with the firmname of Henry Birkettís Sons.  Inthe summer of 1887 the present firms of Birkett Bros. & Co. was organized.  They are conducting a large milling business, are extensivedealers in grain, and also wholesale and retail dealers in lumber of all kinds. In connection with the flouring mills they have a large planning andlumber dressing mill.  William M.BIRKETT is the only member of the firm who resides in Dresden, and the businessis under his supervision.  He is aman y of energy and a reliable citizen.  November26, 1884, he married Clara JESSUP, of Penn Yan, NY and owns a fine residence onSeneca street.

 

Pg. 620 

BOTSFORD, W.H.,MD was born in Branchport, January 28, 1865. He began the study of medicine with Dr. J. C. WIGHTMAN, of Branchport,continuing with him one year.  Hethen studied for two years in the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, and fortwo years in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Baltimore, from which hegraduated in 1887.  He now enjoys alucrative practice.

Pg. 621 

BROWN, James, anative of Scotland, emigrated to America with his parents in his boyhood. The family first settled in Livingston County. In 1803 or 1804, James purchased a farm in the town of Benton, built hima log cabin, and soon after married Mary BARNES, of Benton. He died on the place in 1818.  Thewidow survived until 1845.  Theyreared five sons and two daughters.  Alexander,the youngest, succeeded his father on the homestead, married Elizabeth WILKIE,and died in 1859.  His widow nowresides in Geneva.  John W. BROWN,born October 13, 1809, remained with his parents until he attained his majority. He was a natural mechanic and commenced his business life as a carpenterand builder.  May of the fineresidences in Benton and Torrey are specimens of his skill. He married Eliza A. MEEKER, of Benton, and resided near Bellona until1878, when he removed to Michigan, where he died in 1888. His wife died January 1, 1858.  Theyhad nine children, four daughters and five sons. Only one of the five sons resides in Yates, William, born August 16,1833.  July 4, 1855, he marriedElizabeth MITTOWER, and in January 1859, removed to the homestead of hiswifeís father.  Mr. BROWN is aDemocrat and a worthy and reliable citizen. He is a member of Seneca Lodge No. 308, F. and A.M., and is now servinghis eleventh year as Worthy Master.

 

Pg. 621 

BRUNDAGE, Dr.George W., was born September 15, 1822 at Lodi, Seneca County, NY, and studiedmedicine with Dr. Alfred SEARS, of Townsend. He graduated from the Geneva Medical College in 1846, and settled inDresden in 1847, where he has practiced his profession ever since. He is a member of the Yates County Medical Society, also the Central NewYork Society.  He has been aresident of Dresden for several years.  Hemarried Caroline L., daughter of William GOUNDRY, and they have one child, CalebD., who is engaged in the mercantile business. Dr. BRUNDAGE joined the Presbyterian Church in 1851, of which church hehas been an elder since 1854.

 

Pg, 621 

CLARK, James M.,was born March 19, 1834 in Milo (now a part of Torrey), was reared a farmer andreceived a good education at Starkey Seminary. At the age of twenty-two he purchased the farm of 260 acres on whichstood the log meeting-house of the Friends, erected in 1790. Here he resided twenty-one years.  Healso practiced land surveying.  In1878 he removed to Dresden, where he now resides, being engaged as carpenter andbuilder.  His townsmen elected himsupervisor of Torrey in 1872 and again in 1874.  He has also served as justice of the peace. March 18, 184, he married Nancy A. SWARTHOUT, of Milo, and they have ason, A. J., born March 20, 1875, and a daughter, May born May 5, 1877.

 

Pg. 622 

DAINS, CorneliusA., son of Daniel W. and Nancy DAINS, was born in the town of Milo, July 1,1856, received a common school education.  In1859 his parents removed to Dresden, where he has always resided. In 1875, when nineteen years of age, he was postmaster at Dresden, underGrantís administration, and held that office until December 1, 1885. He was  re-appointed underPresident Harrison, June 12, 1889, which position he has held since. In 1886 he married Belle ALDEN of Wellsville, Allegany County, NY.  He was town clerk of Torrey for nine years and has been inmercantile business since 1875.  Hehas one child, Clement Alden,born April 9, 1887.

 

Pg. 622 

DAINS, GeorgeY., son of Jesse, who came to this country with his father, Jesse, among thefirst settlers, from Connecticut.  GeorgeY. was born December 16, 1810 in the town of Milo, when it belonged to OntarioCounty.  He has always been a resident of the county. In 1840 he married Eliza HEADLEY, daughter of Samuel, and settled in thetown of Milo.  They resided hereuntil 1884, when they left the farm and moved to Dresden. Their four children were: Harriet E., Mary, Stephen C., and Theron S.,all living.   Mary, who residesin Ontario County, town of Gorham, is the wife of John W. WASHBURN. Harriet E., married Jerome PENNEY and resides in Reading, SchuylerCounty.  Samuel HEADLEY, came to Milfrom Morris county, NJ about 1821.  Hewas a blacksmith and farmer and had a family of six children. The only child living, is Eliza, wife of George Y. DAINS, residing inDresden.  Mr. HEADLEY died in 1847or 1848, aged eighty-four years.  Hiswife died eighteen months previous and both were members of the Free WillBaptist Church.

 

Pg. 622 - 623 

DENNISTON,Daniel, was born February 3, 1758 and died February 3, 1824, aged sixty-sixyears.  Maj. Daniel DENNISTON servedin the Revolutionary war as Major for seven years and died in New York City. He married Elizabeth KEINSTEAD, a Holland Dutch lady of rank, and acousin to the Queen of Holland.  Themarriage certificate of Elizabeth KEINSTEAD, widow of Maj. Daniel DENNISTON, isin the war department at Washington.  Shewas born May 14, 1767 and died May 8, 1861, aged ninety-four. She was the mother of fourteen children, of whom Mrs. Ellen BUSH ofGeneva, was the youngest.  All are now deceased.  Edward,the eleventh child, was born on Long island in 1800. When fourteen years of age he came to Western New York, located nearGeneva, and learned the carpenterís trade, which he pursued for a number ofyears.  He then purchased a farm onCity Hill where he resided until his death, June 18, 1875. About 1826 he married Mary, daughter of Nicholas JONES, of Benton, andthey had eight children, seven of whom are living. The widow and mother still survives, aged eighty-five years, and resideswith her youngest son, Johnson J. DENNISTON, in Penn Yan. Perry DENNISTON, the oldest son, born in Seneca, NY, September 15, 1831,was a successful farmer until he entered the mercantile business in Dresden, NY,in 1871, which he pursued until 1887.  March25, 1859, Mr. DENNISTON married Anna M. MEEK, daughter of Charles MEEK, ofDresden.  They are members of the M.E. Church and are liberal contributors to its financial interests.

 

Pg. 623 

DENNISTON,Johnston J., son of Edward DENNISTON, was born in Torrey, July 12, 1845, spenthis boyhood on his fatherís farm, and received a business education inEastmanís College, at Poughkeepsie.  In1864, at the request of his parents, he took charge of his fatherís farm andat the latterís death in 1875, he purchased the homestead of the heirs. Mr. DENNISTON is a prominent man in town affairs. He held the position of supervisor in 1888 and again in 1889 and servedas highway commissioner in 1886.  Heis a regular attendant at the Presbyterian Church, of which his wife is amember.  December 12, 1875, he married Anna A. DUNLAP, of Victor,Ontario County, NY.  They have twodaughters, Maud D. and A. Lulu.

 

Pg. 623 

DOWNEY, Robert,came to Torrey in 1800 from Antrim, Pa, and settled on the farm now owned by hisson, David.  He married Rachel SUTHERLAND, and died October 27, 1832, agedsixty-eight years.  His wife diedDecember 13, 1832, aged fifty-six years.  Theyhad eight children, four sons and four daughters, viz.: William, David, Eleanor, Jane, Robert, John, Elizabeth and Mary. David DOWNEY, son of Robert, who is the sole survivor, was born March 10,1803, and has always resided on the farm.  Hemarried Caroline NORMAN, and had four children, Robert N., William W., GeorgeS., and David Jr.  William died in1861.  David has always been afarmer and held the office of assessor six years. His wife died January 19, 1870.  Mr.DOWNEY is an elder in the Presbyterian Church, of which he has been a member formany years.  David DOWNEY Jr., wasborn on the Downey farm, February 13, 1840, where he has always resided. He married Sarah A., WHEELER, daughter of Sumner WHEELER and has hadseven children, five of whom survive.  Heis a farmer and a grape grower, of which he has four acres.

 

Pg. 624 

DOX, Abraham,born in Albany, NY, June 7, 1777, was reared a merchant. At the age of fourteen years he entered the store of Dudley WALSH, ofAlbany, and remained there until 1804, when he was entrusted with the managementof a branch store in Geneva, NY.  Soonafter he bought the store of Mr. WALSH and conducted the business alone until1824, when he removed to Benton, now a part of Torrey, and purchased a flouringmill, clothing mill and tannery.  In1826 his mills were burned and he have his attention to agricultural pursuitsuntil his death in August 1862.  Hewas a representative in the State legislature in 1812. The same year he organized and drilled a company of 100 men at hisexpense, took them to the front, and was obliged to leave them to attend thelegislature.  He was an old lineWhig.

 

Pg. 624 

HAZARD, TheFamily Ė The HAZARD family of America is of Welsh origin and descended fromThomas HAZARD who emigrated from Wales in 1669 and settled in Rhode Island. Jonathan J. HAZARD Jr., who was the progenitor of the HAZARDS of YatesCounty, was the fifth generation from Thomas HAZARD. He served in the Revolutionary War and was taken prisoner by the enemy. He was a sea captain later in live and died on the ocean. His wife was Tacy BURDICK.  Hisson, George V. HAZARD, married Marian, daughter of John, and a relative of JudgeWilliam POTTER.  They settled on afarm on City Hill, about 1800, and were in the Friendís settlement. He eventually died at the age of sixty five years, at Dresden. His son, Jonathan, married Elouisetta F., daughter of Russel BROWN, apioneer of Torrey.  He was a farmerand met his death while bathing in the canal. Their children were George R., Adaline A., and Harriet M. George R. HAZARD, born June 18, 1841, married Gertrude TEFT, of Torrey,and is now the genial proprietor of Dresden Hotel, situated on the site of thefirst hotel erected in the village of Dresden.

 

Pg. 625 

HURLEY, DanielB., was born in Reading, Schuyler County, NY, March 14, 1842. August 10, 1862, he enlisted in Co. A., 141st NY Infantry, andwas honorably discharged as corporal June 24, 1865, at the close of the war.  He waswith General SHERMAN form Chattanooga to Savannah, and participated in overtwenty engagements.  He resides in apleasant home in the village of Dresden, where he has lived for the pasttwenty-five years.  January 10,1866, he married Hannah PETRIE, of Dix, Schulyer County and they have onedaughter, Carrie.

 

Pg. 625 

LEGG,Joshua, came to Torrey from Medway, Mass, in 1773 and settled on the farm nowowned by his grandson, Caleb J. LEGG.  Joshuacame to this county in company with John PLIMPTON. They had four yoke of oxen and two wagons. The road was through a wilderness and they were the first settlers in thetown of Torrey.  Joshua had eightchildren and all resided and died in this county. Carlton LEGG, son of Joshua, was born on the farm and married RachelPLIMPTON, by whom he had three children, Moses A., Aaron E., and Caleb J., whowas born May 18, 1806, and has always resided on the homestead farm. He married Elizabeth HENDERSON, daughter of Richmond HENDERSON, and theyhave had six children, for of whom now survive.  Caleb LEGG was eighteen years extensively engaged in buyingand selling grain and farming.  Hewas one of the charter members of the Dresden Masonic Lodge, was several timeselected justice of the peace and held the office of side judge several terms. Both he and his wife are hale and hearty, and have lived together sinceDecember 25, 1828.  three children, Henderson, Nelson and Charles reside inTorrey; Henrietta, wife of Marvin KIPP, resides in Benton.  Caleb LEGG was the inventor of Leggís corn husker andsheller, which is now used all over the United States.

 

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