Yates County, New York

Early Settlers for the Town of Torrey


From the History of Yates County, NY
published 1892, by L.C. Aldrich

pg  435- 437

 

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EarlySettlers of Torrey   

Thefamily of Benedict ROBINSON was one prominently conspicuous and important in theFriend’s settlement on Seneca Lake.  Thehead of this family was not only a pioneer, but is said to have been one of thecommissioners sent to locate a tract for the society’s home, although the nameof Mr. ROBINSON has not been previously mentioned in that connection. Mr. ROBINSON was also one of the leading men who became alienated fromthe society, and from that time forth was in bitter enmity with the Friend’sdoctrine.  Benedict ROBINSON died in1832 and his wife in 1837.  Thefamily home was on the “gore” as it had been commonly known. The children in the family were Phebe, Daniel A., James C. and Abigail. 

In1869 Dr. John HATMAKER, at the expense of much time and labor, made and reportedto the Yates County Historical Society, a complete list of the first settlers ofthe town of Torrey, together with the names of the person who in 1869 were theoccupants of the lands on which the pioneers located. The report was as follows: “The south part of what is now the town ofTorrey, on the south side of the stream, was all a part of the John LANSINGJr.’s location, where small improvements were made by different individuals,viz.: Elisha BOTSFORD, SHEFFIELD, Elisha and Beloved LUTHER and afterward,Benedict ROBINSON and William POTTER became owners or agents of the location,and it was sold to those who made improvements.” 

Thefirst settlers, with occupants at the time of making the report, 1869, were asfollows *(for brevity, the names of the first settlers are in italics) : 

JepthaRANDOLPH, DanielRANDOLPH, Jonathan Lamb, Moses RAPALEE; Jonathan SISSON, George Y.DAINS; Isaiah YOUNGS, Benjamin YOUNGS; James MEEK, Perry DENNISTON;Richard HAYES, Henry BROWN; Wright BROWN, Wright BROWN Jr.,; EstherBRIGGS (or PLANT), Mr. GELDER and Mrs. J. PERRY; Silas HUNT, Dr. E.S. SMITH; Elsie HAZARD; Russell BUCKLEY and D. W. DOX.  Above the road: Silas HUNT, Uriah Bennett; Jesse DAINS, N.RAPALEE; George SISSON, --; George & Abner GARDNER, George G.GARDNER; Sheffield LUTHER, Rufus E. TOWNSEND and Mr. DENISTON; DavidKING, Daniel KING, J. BELL And J. BEARD; the Friend’s place, ownedby C. J. TOWNSEND; Abel BOTSFORD, A. Leach and James CLARK; Adam &John CASTNER, Charles J. TOWNSEND; William & Arnold POTTER, AdamCLARK; John BRUCE, G. TURNER; Hezekiah TOWNSEND, Allen OWENS; ElijahMALIN, Samuel EMBREE; Gilbert HATHAWAY, Richard H. HATHAWAY; ThomasHATHAWAY, Manchester TOWNSEND; John REMER, J.J. & G. B. HAZARD; B.W. HAZARD, Andrew OLIVER; Benedict ROBINSON, William BENEDICT, P. J.SEELEY and David HATMAKER; LATIMORE & BIRKETT, A. V. REMER. 

Oneof the most historic and sadly interesting situations in the town of Torrey isthat commonly called  the City HillCemetery.  It is well know that theFriends intended to not only found a colony and spread their possessions over aconsiderable area of country, but it was also their purpose and design to foundand establish a village or city, where should be the chief center of trade fortheir community of people.  They didestablish a village, and named it Hopeton. As a necessary adjunct also to this village, and as well of their entiresettlement, they laid out and founded a cemetery for the burial of their dead. The Friend herself here on many an occasion officiated at a funeral, andlaid peacefully away some of the most devout and worthy members of her flock. 

Thecemetery itself was laid out on an elevated land that too the name of City Hill,from whence the burial place was likewise named. It was and is a beautiful situation, about one mile west from the lake. The first person here buried was the wife of pioneer Jedediah HOLMES, oneof the first comers of the Friend’s society, and one of her most faithfuladherents.  To make a coffin or burial casket, a log was hollowed outafter splitting a slab from one side; and being afterward replaced, the slabserved as a cover.   

Amongthe prominent Friends and others buried in the City Hill Cemetery, we furnishthe names of a number, with the age of the person at the time of death. They were all, or nearly all, members of the society, and it will beobserved that the simple and frugal manner of living observed by nearly all ofthem was especially conducive to longevity. Stephen CARD died and was buried in 1836, aged 75 years; Hannah, wife ofStephen CARD, died in 1851, aged 94; Mary, wife of George GARDNER, died in 1848;aged 94; Abner GARDNER, died 1860, aged 79; Rowland CHAMPLIN died in 1848, aged74; Jonathan J. HAZARD died 1812, aged 84; Patience, wife of J. J. HAZARD, diedin 1810, aged 76; Mary, wife of Griffin B. HAZARD, in 1845, aged 79; MaryNORRIS, daughter of Thomas HATHAWAY died in 1847; aged 76; Hezekiah TOWNSENDdied in 1812, aged 60; Daniel CASTNER died in 1811, aged 85; Andrew CASTNER diedin 1847, aged 81; Adam CASTNER died in 1858, aged 85; John D. CASTNER died in1852, aged 78; John REMER died in 1820, aged 75; Sarah, wife of John REMER, diedin 1817, aged 63; Aaron REMER died in 1841 at age 60; George I. REMER died in1845, aged 70; Isaiah YOUNGS died in 1829, aged 80; Mary, wife of Isaiah YOUNGS,died at aged 73; George SISSON, of the first company of Friends, died in 1831,aged 78; James PITNEY died in 1845, aged 83; Rebecca, his wife died in 1853,aged 80; Sheffield LUTER died in 1845, aged 84; and Mary, his wife in 1849, aged92; James MEEK died in 1836, aged 73 and Mary Ann, his wife died in 1855, aged89; Wright BROWN *** died in 1837; aged 87 and Bethany his wife in 1828, aged 69;Thomas HATHAWAY Jr. died in 1853, aged 84 and Mary, his wife, in 1830, aged 88;Jonathan BOTSFORD died in 1833, aged 92; Robert Buckley died in 1849, aged 76;Peleg BRIGGS died in 1807 aged 78 and Margaret BRIGGS in 1800, aged 66; RowlandEMBREE died in 1837 aged 77 and Allah, his wife in 1852, aged 77; Samuel HADLEYdied in 1847, aged 83 and Elizabeth, his wife died in 1846, aged 70.

 

*** Wright BROWN was  actually born 1 July 1748 in Ware River Parish, Hampshire Co. MA and died 25 April 1837, making him 89 at the time of his death.  On his wife, Bertha's (Bethiah) grave...actually on the tombstone is inscribed 25 (--) 1756     Correction from  Sonja Abate  

 

 

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