Sunday, June 30, 2013

Lewis, Sarah, and Mattie Tripp

Lewis Tripp was the son of Samuel H. Tripp, a farmer, and Fanny G. Tripp. In 1850, Lewis lived with his parents and siblings and an 84-year-old woman named Phebe Carpenter. By 1860, Lewis had married his wife Sarah and had moved out of his parents' house, but apparently hadn't gone far, as he was listed on the same census page as they were. Interestingly, Phebe Carpenter, now 94, was still alive.

Lewis was a shoemaker and a farmer. He and Sarah had two children, Henry (born about 1859) and Martha (born around 1862 and known as "Mattie"). Martha died in 1881 at the age of 19, and Sarah in 1884 at the age of 55. Lewis lived another sixteen years, dying in 1900 at the age of 75.

  1. Samuel H. Tripp (1778-) m. Fanny G. (1787-)
    1. Lewis Tripp (1825-1900) m. Sarah L. (1829-1884)
      1. Henry L. Tripp (1859-)
      2. Mattie B. Tripp (1862-1881)

Emma W. Beardsley

I am shocked by how little luck I've had researching this family. The inscription reads:

Emma W.
Wife of
L. B. Beardsley
& eldest daughter of
J. H. Lester, Esq.
of New York.
Who departed this life
July 7th 1852
aged 38 years.

Also their daughter
Mary Emma
Died August 5, 1850
Aged four months five days.

From the inscription on the grave of Emma's sister Lucretia, I was able to determine that their parents were in fact Jedediah H. and Mary Seaman Lester. However, I have been unable to find the Lesters in any census (or elsewhere), nor L. B. Beardsley. This is surprising, given that this was likely a well-to-do, well-known family.

  1. Jedediah H. Lester m. Mary Seaman (1786-1856)
    1. Emma W. Lester (1814-1852) m. L. B. Beardsley
      1. Mary Emma Beardsley (1850-1850)
    2. Lucretia Edwards Lester (1820-1853)

Harry Brundage

Harry Brundage, the only child of Nathan and Armenia Brundage, died in 1912 at the age of 24. According to the inscription, his gravestone was "erected by Mutual Engine & Hose Co."

1900 US Federal Census
Harry's father and mother died in 1903 and 1904, respectively. I haven't been able to find much more beyond this family of Brundages beyond that. I would be interested to know whether Harry died in the line of duty as a firefighter, and if he was married before he died.
  1. Nathan Brundage (1843-1903) m. Armenia (1853-1904)
    1. Harry F. Brundage (1888-1912)

Morris C. and Charlotte T. Smith

In 1870, Morris C. and Charlotte T. Smith lived with their seven children between the ages of 11 and 30. The couple had buried four children: two within a week of each other in 1848 (Henrietta, age 8, and Seraphin, age 2), one in 1854 (Salena, age 7), and one in 1869 (Fannie Jane, age 17).

While Morris is listed as a shoemaker in the 1860 census, he was a farmer in the 1870 census.

1870 US Federal Census
Morris Smith died in 1879. In 1880, his wife Charlotte lived with their son Alonzo, a farmer; their daughter Mary, who was now Mary Small; Mary's daughter Carrie; and their youngest child Ida, along with William Bowles, a servant. Charlotte died in 1882.

  1. Morris C. Smith (1818-1879) m. Charlotte T. (1815-1882)
    1. Ann M. Smith (1840-)
    2. Henrietta Smith (1840-1848)
    3. Mary E. Smith (1842-) m. Unknown Small 
      1. Carrie Small (1874-)
    4. Alonzo C. Smith (1844-)
    5. Seraphin Smith (1846-1848)
    6. Salena Smith (1848-1854)
    7. Nathaniel Smith (1850-)
    8. Fanny Jane Smith (1852-1869)
    9. Melissa Smith (1855-)
    10. Wesley G. Smith (1857-)
    11. Ida Smith (1859-)

Philip and Nancy Sarles

Philip Sarles outlived his wife Nancy by nearly fifty years. She died in 1825, age 41; he died in 1872, age 88. When Nancy died, slavery was still legal in New York. Philip got to see the entire Civil War and a good chunk of Reconstruction. Not bad for someone who was born the year after the Revolutionary War ended.

Nancy is not the only Nancy Sarles buried in the cemetery. In fact, she is one of three. One lived from 1783-1863, and the other lived from 1812-1899.

There are no other Philip Sarleses buried in the cemetery, but I can imagine that he wasn't the only Philip Sarles running around town in the nineteenth century. Accordingly, it's somewhat difficult to say with certainty whether this Philip Sarles - who would have been born around 1787 - is the correct one. Shown here in the 1850 census, this Philip Sarles was a constable with an estate of $3,000, and was living with a family of Merritts. Figures. (None of these Merritts are buried in the cemetery, though.)

1850 US Federal Census
Unfortunately, this is the only census in which I can find Philip Sarles. He should be in the 1860 and 1870 censuses, but I can't find him. This is sad, since I'm sure that Philip and Nancy Sarles raised a whole flock of little Sarleses, as Sarleses are inclined to do. I would have liked to see if I could figure out who they were.

I did find an article in the Yonkers Statesman giving the "abstract of accounts audited by the Board of Town Auditors" in 1870, which named Philip Sarles as the constable (his account for the year was $6).

I also found a reference to the property owned by Philip Sarles: "a farm of about a hundred acres near Roaring Brook." After Sarles died, the property was owned by Abraham Hyatt.

The Dutcher Family

There are four Dutchers buried in the cemetery, all in the Methodist portion. They are husband and wife (Benjamin and Amanda) and two daughters (Matilda and Adaline). Matilda and Adaline were the Dutchers' youngest children. The Dutchers' oldest child, Melissa, would have been born when Benjamin was only seventeen or eighteen and Amanda was only fifteen or sixteen years old. 

Benjamin Dutcher, who was born around 1830, was the son of Abraham and Ann Dutcher, and in 1850 had three younger siblings: David, Abram, and Kythena. In earlier censuses, his occupation is a farm laborer, and in later ones, like this one from 1870, he was a brick mason.

1870 US Federal Census
In 1864, Benjamin served for thirty days as a member of the New York National Guard to protect New York Harbor. Apparently, the National Guard was summoned several times during the war to deal with riots and other security issues that broke out in New York City. As a result of his service in the National Guard, Benjamin was given a government headstone, which unlike the headstones of his family members doesn't record his date of birth or death. The WPA Record for Benjamin Dutcher incorrectly lists his birth year as 1844.

The three Dutcher women died in relatively quick succession: Adaline in 1887 at the age of 17, Matilda (called "Tillie" on her gravestone) in 1889 at the age of 22, and Ann in 1890 at the age of 57.

This is Matilda's obituary from September 1889:
Matilda Dutcher, daughter of Mr. Benjamin K. Dutcher, died at her home, New Castle, on Thursday of last week, aged 22 years. Cause of death, consumption. The funeral services were held at the M. E. Church, on Sunday, at 2 pm, at the interment was in the old Methodist burying ground at New Castle.
In 1891, Benjamin Dutcher married Lydia Grey, the widow of Nelson Grey. Neither lived very long after the wedding. This was his obituary:
Mr. Benjamin K. Dutcher died at the residence of his sister, Mrs. Weeks, at Pleasantville, on Saturday night last, April 28th, aged 64 years. The cause of death was chronic diarrhoea. His wife (widow of the late Nelson Grey), died at Ridgefield, Conn., only a short time ago. He leaves a family of several sons and daughters. The funeral services were held in the M. E. Church, at 1 p. m., and burial at the old Methodist Cemetery at New Castle.

  1. Abraham Dutcher (1805-) m. Ann (1805-)
    1. Benjamin K. Dutcher (1830-1894) m. (1) Amanda (1833-1890); (2) Lydia Grey
      1. Melissa Dutcher (1848-)
      2. Stephen A. Dutcher (1850-)
      3. Louisa Dutcher (1856-)
      4. William Dutcher (1858-)
      5. Polly Dutcher (1860-)
      6. Mary A. Dutcher (1861-)
      7. Lucy A. Dutcher (1863-)
      8. Abraham Dutcher (1865-)
      9. Matilda Dutcher (1867-1889)
      10. Adaline Dutcher (1870-1887)
    2. David Dutcher (1833-)
    3. Abram Dutcher (1836-)
    4. Kythena Dutcher (1844-)

Susan P. Banks

So far in my work on the cemetery, I've only made posts about the families or individuals whom I have successfully researched. There are many others I've tried to research, but I either found nothing or what I found was too ambiguous to be definitively identified with the person in question.

Now that I'm a bit further along in the project, I'm going to start making posts for the people for whom my preliminary research on Ancestry has been unsuccessful. My hope is that either I'll find what I'm looking for later on, or someone else will recognize the name and will be able to provide me with a lead.

To the right is the grave of Susan P. Banks, who was born April 2, 1867, and died April 8, 1901. I found a New York-born Susan Banks, a widow living in Essex, New Jersey, with her sister Ruth Fisher in the 1900 census, but I couldn't tell for certain whether it was the right Susan Banks. The Susan Banks in the census was born in April 1865.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Reginald Hart

The plot outlined with an iron fence in the foreground of this photo is that of the Stanton family. A few feet beyond it, in the middle of the photo, is the large, plain obelisk that belongs to the Hart family. Strangely, three of the Harts' graves seem to have been marked with pairs of two footstones each (shown with arrows in the photo above) - that is, two footstones instead of a headstone and a footstone. There should be a total of six, but there are only five. Each footstone is marked with its owners' initials.

This is the side of the Hart obelisk that I cleaned today:

Reginald Hart outlived the rest of his family by quite a few years. Though he died before 1914, the transcription taken that year doesn't list him. Instead, it lists:

Joseph P. Hart, died 1848 age 64
N. Coleman Hart, died 1861 age 25
Nancy Hart, wife of Joseph, died 1821 age 26
R. Stewart Hart, died 1861 age 22

The Hart brothers (N., R., and Reginald) were not, in fact, the sons of Joseph and Nancy Hart, but of Robert S. Hart, a lawyer and county judge, and his wife Harriet Wing Russell. Robert was the son of Nathaniel Coleman Hart and his Irish-born wife Susannah Stewart. I am actually unsure of how Joseph and Nancy Hart are related to the rest of the Harts.

N. Coleman Hart was Nathaniel, named for Robert's father. He studied at Columbia College and Amherst College, learned how to practice law from his father, and was admitted to the bar in 1857 at the age of 22. In 1860, Nathaniel lived with his parents; his brother R[obert] Stewart Hart, who was a law student; and his 14-year-old brother Reginald.

1860 US Federal Census
Nathaniel died in New York City of scarlet fever on June 4, 1861. His brother Robert died on June 24 of measles, having enlisted in the 17th New York Infantry Regiment on May 7.

The 1870 census shows Robert and Harriet Hart with their surviving son Reginald, who is incorrectly identified as Robert Hart.

1870 US Federal Census
Reginald Hart had in fact become a lawyer like his father and brothers. He graduated from Trinity College in New Haven and was admitted to the bar in 1870.

In 1872, Reginald was called to testify about the will of Horace Greeley, to which he had been a witness, in front of his father, Judge Hart. Apparently the case concerned whether or when Horace Greeley had gone insane. Reginald's testimony is printed in the New York Sun of December 19, 1872, which describes him as a "good-looking bachelor" (the article is called "Horace Greeley's Wills: Important Evidence of Thomas N Booker - He is satisfied that Mr. Greeley was insane as early as November 14 ..."). Reginald stated that he was "over twenty-one years of age. I don't suppose (blushing) that there is any need of my saying how old I am. I have been acquainted with Mr. Horace Greeley about twelve years, and know his handwriting."

On June 5, 1877, 31-year-old Reginald married 21-year-old Emma K. Farley, the daughter of William C. Farley, in New York. She died two years later. They don't seem to have had any children, and Reginald didn't remarry. That same year, his mother Harriet Wing Hart died. In 1880, the widowed father and son were living together, along with two servants.

1880 US Federal Census
Reginald suffered from tuberculosis in the mid-1880s, and spent the winter of '86-87 in Florida in hopes that the warm climate would improve his condition. According to the local newspaper of May 6, 1887, "[h]e was supposed to have returned last week, but was detained in Charleston, S.C., by the pressing hospitality of several of his friends, who wished him to be present at the unveiling of the Calhoun monument." This is most certainly the statue of John C. Calhoun that stands on Marion Square and was erected by the Charleston Ladies' Calhoun Monument Association. Though the monument wasn't finished until 1896, it was unveiled in an unfinished state on April 26, 1887.

Robert S. Hart died in December of 1887, at the age of 74. I have transcribed his lengthy obituary here.

In 1890, several prominent "business men and property owners," led by James Wood, gathered in the opera house to discuss how the town might be developed as a residential area. According to an article in the local newspaper,
the Harlem R. R. Co. had almost definitely decided to remove their round-house here from White Plains, and all their car-yards, &c., owing to the very generous offer of Mr. Reginald Hart to give to the R. R. Co. free of cost, all the land they wanted, east of the track, and at the rear of the Amerman [?] property. The railroad officials said that this offer had virtually settled the question, and they were to come up this week to look over the ground and see how much of it they wanted, and decide upon plans ... The announcement of Mr. Hart's generous offer was received with applause.
In 1899, the New York Tribune reported that Reginald Hart had presented a portrait of his father Robert Hart to the Board of Supervisors of Westchester County in White Plains: "Judge Hart was one of the old-time justices of Westchester, and his portrait, which is said to be an excellent one, will be placed in the Supreme Court room, which already contains portraits of Judges Jay, Dyckman, and Robertson."

Reginald Hart died in 1902 at the age of 57. 

  1. Nathaniel Coleman Hart m. Susannah Stewart
    1. Robert S. Hart (1813-1887) m. Harriet Wing Russell (1815-1879)
      1. Nathaniel Coleman Hart (1835-1861)
      2. Robert Stewart Hart (1839-1861)
      3. Reginald Hart (1846-1902) m. Emma K. Farley (1856-1879) in 1877

Hester Baker

Hester Baker's gravestone is located between that of her husband Benjamin and her granddaughter, "Little Emma." She was born Hester Sarles around 1811. In 1850, she and Benjamin, a farmer, had four children.

1850 US Federal Census
Ten years later, the Bakers had five children, including 25-year-old Phebe, who is inexplicably missing in the 1850 census. Had she been living with another family at the time? Catherine, who was one year old in the 1850 census, isn't present in the 1860 census. Did she die?

1860 US Federal Census
Hester died in 1864, and Benjamin in 1873. Their son Henry T. Baker married a woman named Susan and had three children in 1870.

1870 US Federal CEnsus
Benjamin and Hester's daughter Josephine married William Oliver Mosher, a farmer, in 1865. "Little Emma" is Josephine and William's daughter, who died in 1866 at one year old. A second child of the Moshers, Willie, also died at age one year in 1874 and is buried in the cemetery. Of William and Josephine's ten children, only two were alive in 1900, when the couple was living in Poughkeepsie, and 58-year-old William was working as a day laborer.

Josephine died in 1935 at the age of 89. This is her obituary in the Mount Vernon Daily Argus:

Mount Vernon Daily Argus, 19 March 1935

  1. Benjamin Horton Baker (1812-1873) m. Hester Sarles (1811-1864)
    1. Phebe H. Baker (1835-)
    2. Philo H. Baker (1841-)
    3. Henry T. Baker (1844-) m. Susan A. (1845-)
      1. Ella M. Baker (1865-)
      2. Emma S. Baker (1867-)
      3. Charles H. Baker (1869-)
    4. Josephine Sarles Baker (1848-1935) m. William Oliver Mosher (1842-before 1920) in 1865
      1. Julia Mosher (1864-)
      2. Emma Mosher (1865-1866)
      3. Edith Mosher (1868-)
      4. Willie H. Mosher (1873-1874)
      5. William A. Mosher (1879-) m. Jennie C. (1882-)
        1. Dorothy L. Mosher (1903-)
    5. Catherine A. Baker (1849-) 
    6. Seth A. Baker (1850-)
    7. Susan A. Baker (1851-)

Cemetery Update

We made some interesting discoveries at the cemetery today. You may remember the giant cross made out of footstones that was laid across the foundation of the nineteenth-century church sometime in the 1960s. Well, today we discovered that the cross includes a few headstones, too. Above is the headstone of Amy Myers, who died April 16, 1842 at the age of 88, before and after I cleaned it. We are trying to figure out where she belongs.

We also discovered this fragment of a headstone, with the letters "LUC" and "Sam." Our best guess is that this is Lucinda, or Lucretia, or possibly Lucy, the wife of Samuel.

Below, you can see Susan holding the broken piece of Almira Gilbert's gravestone in place. The piece was sitting right beside the gravestone. As you can tell by the difference in color, it's been a long time since these pieces were whole. You can also see the remains of the cement that were used to fix the stone in the mid-20th century. While well-intentioned, the 20th-century restorers generally didn't do a very good job, using materials that broke down just a few decades later.

Lastly, here is the work I did on the grave of Hester Baker. I wasn't able to remove the ugly black stuff at the bottom, but the grave is a lot brighter now. The base of this stone is not original, but was used to cement the stone upright sometime in the mid-20th century. The base wasn't very well designed - as I was washing the stone, water kept collecting at the foot of the stone on top of the base. If water is allowed to sit on the base like that, the cement keeping the stone in place will probably break down sooner rather than later.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Quaker Cemetery

There is significant overlap in the surnames of the Episcopal Cemetery and the nearby, contemporary Quaker cemetery. To begin with, there are plenty of Sarleses in both. It's a reasonable guess that many of the Episcopalians and Quakers who shared surnames were actually relatives, perhaps even close relatives. Certainly, some of the people buried in the Episcopal Cemetery were Quakers, had been Quakers, or came from Quaker families, such as Charles Haight and Phebe Chase Greene.

Thorn seems to be a very common name in the Quaker cemetery, although I don't know whether there is any relation to Stephen Thorn (my guess: probably).

Coincidentally, Rose is also a very common name in the cemetery. Below you can see one of the very rare examples of decoration on the stones (the fact that I took so many pictures of the decorated stones makes the decoration seem less rare than it really is). The graves of Walton and Phebe Rose are engraved with their initials: WR and PUR. 

While the grave of Grace and Oscar Rose is marked with a Masonic symbol.

As you can see, the cemetery is quite overgrown, with some stones stranded in a sea of brush and debris. While this isn't good for the preservation of the stones, there's a certain beauty to the overgrowth. In some places, it's wild and lovely, with a fairy-tale sort of feel. It also serves as a physical manifestation of time.

Full disclosure: I came to this cemetery a lot when I was a child. You might say it was my first cemetery. So the landscape brings me back to that time when I was genuinely afraid of getting lost if I wandered too far out into what looked to me like a wilderness.

Still, the cemetery could probably use some work. Graves have been tossed around by this mutilated tree ...

... and many stones would benefit from a good cleaning.

Here you can see a child's grave that seems to match two child's graves in the Episcopal Cemetery: this one of John Howard and this one of George Henry and Lewis Seaman. It stands to reason that the Episcopalians and the Quakers would have bought gravestones from the same workshops.

On the other hand, the Quakers certainly did prefer their stones to be plainer, in general, than the Episcopalians did. During my brief time at the cemetery, I didn't see a single urn or willow, the hallmarks of mid-nineteenth-century gravestone decoration. I did see the rare ornamental flourish, such as the examples above and below:

I also didn't see any old sandstone graves with cherub faces, despite the fact that the Meeting dates back to the eighteenth century. I assume the reason is either 1) I missed them or 2) the Quakers weren't using gravestones at this time. Many eighteenth-century Quakers didn't use gravestones out of the belief that they were ostentatious. Others used extremely plain or blank stone markers. Some Quaker Meetings that had gravestones had them removed in the course of the eighteenth century.

These stones seemed to date from the mid-nineteenth century up to the present, with the best preserved stones being the granite markers of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Some stones were inscribed with the months in their Quaker form - that is, First Month instead of January.

Below are the stones that most fascinated me as a child. I thought they were doors that you could open into the underworld. It turns out I wasn't far off. I don't know what these stones are about - are they the lids of stone tombs that go down into the earth, or are they just markers placed on top of the earth? - but the basic visual and symbolic idea underlying the gravestone is that of a door. That is why some gravestones - mostly early ones like this - have architectural features like those you might find on a door (i.e., lunettes or tympanums).

While most of the gravestones are plain and undecorated, quite a few are massive. Take a look at this row of Sarleses, lined up right along the brim of the hill. They're quite impressive.

More Sarleses, of the same time period:

And here are some Underhills. That stone wall in the background could easily be as old as the cemetery itself.

Like the Episcopal cemetery, the Quaker cemetery has had some repairs done, but probably not recently. Broken stones have been fixed, and old stones have been placed on new bases.

Unlike the Episcopal cemetery, the Quaker cemetery is spread out. There are large open spaces in between the clusters of graves. In some places, the ground is level, and in other places it slopes dramatically. There are a lot of trees, a lot of weeds, and a lot to discover.

Lastly, here are the beautiful graves of the Quinbys and the Purdys, which are nestled into the roots of a tree. They're from the 1920s or '30s. The latest grave I saw today dated from 2009.