An act to erect a new town from the towns of Sparta and Naples in the county of Ontario. Passed April 17, 1816.
Sec. 1. Be it enacted by the people of the state of New York in Senate and Assembly. That from and after the first Monday in April next, all that part of the town of Sparta beginning at the north-east corner of said town, and running westerly on the north line of said town of Sparta three miles, thence southerly parallel with the east line of said town to the south line of said town, thence easterly on the south line of said town to the south-east corner of said town of Sparta, thence easterly on the south line of the town of Naples five and one-half miles; thence northerly parallel with the west side of said town of Naples to the north side of said town to the place of beginning, is hereby erected into a new town by the name of Springwater; and the first town meeting shall he held at the school house in school district No. 1 in the now town of Sparta.
At the first annual town meeting held in the town of Springwater, county of Ontario, at the school house near Dr. David Henrys on Tuesday, the 9th day of April, 1817. Solomon Doud was chosen moderator. The following Town officers were elected and bye laws passed, viz: Supervisor, Oliver Jennings: town clerk, Hugh Wilson; assessors, Jonathan Lawrence; Solomon Doud, Alexander McCuller; commissioners of highways, Samuel Story. Solomon Doud, Josiah Fuller; school commissioners, Samuel Story, Solomon Doud, John Culver; overseers of the poor; Henry Cole, Sam. Story; school inspectors, John W. Barnes, Ephriam Caulkin. Thomas Grover: constable and collector, Jonathan Lawrence; path-masters, John Johnson, Salmon Grover, David Marshall, Samuel Sparks, John Porter, John Wadama, Thomas Willis, Daniel Herrick, Joab Gillett, Simeon Shed, William Fuller; fence viewers. Voted that path masters shall serve as fence viewers. Pound masters, Joab Gillett and Lorin Coleburn. Voted that all hogs over 50 weight shall be free commoners. Voted that 250 dollars shall he raised to be appropriated to the use of highways.
Oliver Jennings resided on the farm now owned by Samuel W. Wheaton, and kept a tavern in a log house opposite Wheaton’s barn. Hugh Wilson was a Pennsylania Dutchman, and lived where Charles F. Smith now lives. He owned a small grist mill and saw mill where Wm. Brewer’s mill and furnace now are. Jonathan Lawrence lived where A. 0. Marvin now lives, and owned the east part of Marvin’s farm. He had three sons, Ralph, Solomon K., and Willlam. Solomon Doud lived on the farm now owned by Philo Higgins, and ran a distillery for the manufacture of corn whiskey.
Alexander Mc Culler lived on the farm now owned by Hyde Marvin. Samuel Story lived on the S. C. Tyler farm and owned and run a saw mill where the Tyler mill now is. He was an active business man, and took part in many improvements for the town. He built a road from Springwater to Dansville, also on the west line of Springwater, which still bears the name of the “Story Road.” Josiah Fuller lived where Mrs. Ira Jackman now lives, and owned the farm. He had a number of children. I recollect his sons, William, Jesse, Josiah, Matthew, Aaron, and one daughter, Hannah, (Mrs. Jackman) who is still living. John Culver lived on the farm now occupied by Harvey Wilcox. He was a prominent and active man of business. He was one of the first justices of the peace of Springwater, also supervisor for a few years. He finally removed to Ohio. Henry Cole was a farmer, and lived on the west part of the Ira Jackman farm. John W. Barnes, farmer, lived near the Joel Hudson farm. Ephrairn Calkin lived on the hill near Tabor’s corners. Thomas Grover lived in the valley: was one of the Grovers that removed from Cipeo, Cayuga County, to Springwater. John Johnson lived on the Elisha Bailey farm. . Salmon Grover, a brother of Thomas, lived where Win?, now lives. David Marshall lived in the valley; do not recollect the exact place. Samuel Sparks lived near the Christian church. John Wadains lived where Ezra Willis now lives; he was a farmer. Thos. Willis lived on east hill; cannot give the exact place. Daniel Herrick lived on what is now known as Herrick Street; he was a brother of Lyman and David Herrick. They came from Canada to Springwater in an early day. Daniel died here many years ago. The late Sophia Wilcox was a daughter of his. Jacob Gillet lived on a farm south of the Ashley burying ground; he was one of the first justices of the peace of Springwater. Simeon Shed lived on the farm known as the Totten farm on west hill. William Fuller was a son of Josiah Fuller; do not recollect his place of residence, though he resided here for many years and raised a large family of children, one of whom was the wife of the late George Johnson. Some of her children are still among us.
I will now give my recollection of inhabitants residing in the valley, commencing at the north line of the town: First, Reuben Gilbert and his sons, Reuben Jr., Abner and Araunah; David Badgero, a son-in-law of Reuben Gilbert and father of Francis and the blind girls, Sally and Hannah; David Gelath; Jesse Hyde, who lived in the Johnson house, had a large family of children, one of whom was the wife of George C. Marvin, late of Springwater, both deceased. Their children are still living here, Harvey H., Addison G. and Hyde D. Then came Oliver Jennings; then Jonathan Lawrence, mentioned before. John Wiley then lived where the John McCrossen house now is. He was a blacksmith and worked at his trade. About 1821 he experienced religion, joined the Methodist church and soon commenced to preach the gospel, and was a thorough preacher of the word of God for many years. He has gone to his rest, but some of his children are still among us, viz: Mrs. Hickok, John S. Wiley, R. H. Wiley, Esq. , Major H. A. Wiley, and Mrs. Wilber Capron. Then comes Thomas, Andrew and Amos Spafford. Thomas Spafford built the house where Maurice Brown Esq. lived, and kept a tavern there for many years. Andrew Spafford was supervisor of this town for many years; be finally moved to Mich. He and Thomas are both living in the town of Manchester, Washtenaw county, Mich. Thomas is 89 years old and Andrew about 84 years. David Luther was a tanner and courier, and lived next house west of John Wiley. He went to Dansville and died many years since. The next in order was Alvin Southworth. He was elected supervisor in 1818, and held the office for ten or twelve years. He also served the town as justice of the peace for many years. He was the first postmaster in town, and held it until his death, which took place about 1847. He lived in the house now owned by N. A. Kellogg, where Frank Goodno now lives. I will mention a circumstance in connection with the last mentioned house. At one time I saw all living, and all residents of the same house, five generations, viz., John Southwarth, better known as Grandpa Southwarth; second, Alvah Southwarth, his son; third, Mrs. Caroline Wheaton, daughter of Alvab Southwarth; fourth, Alvab S. Wheaton, her son; fifth, Harvey Wheaton, son of Alvah S., who is now living at Hemlock Lake. Harvey has gone west. The next in order which I will mention are the Grovers. Five brothers I recollect. Capt. Zadock Grover, I learn, came from Cayuga County. He came up Hemlock Lake on the ice, on the 20th day of March, 18?, and settled on what was then known as the John Roberts farm, in a log house where Humphrey & Marvin’s store now stands. A brief description of his family may be in order. I learn that Zadock Grover had three wives and reared quite large family of children. By his first wife he had one daughter, Weltha, and six sons, Silas, Hoses H. Lemuel, Lyman, Zadock B., and Thomas C., after which his wife died, and in the course of time he married a widow Tyler who had four children, three daughters and one son. Polly married Doctor David Henry, Roxey married Salmon G. Grover, who many of you will remember. Sally married Benjamin Irish. The son was the late Harvey Tyler of Springwater, who is well remembered by all the old residents. By this marriage they had one daughter, Olive, after which his second wife died, and about 1809, he married Thursey Allen by whom he had four children, two sons and two daughters, viz: David H. Grover, late of Springwater, John J. Grover who is still among us, Ann, or Mrs. John F. Brown, living here, and Mrs. Charles Pixley now living in Rochester; all of whom are remembered by the present inhabitants, and nothing special need be mentioned of them.
Solomon Grover, another of the brothers, was living near where Elder Hunter now lives. He, too, had a large family of children. I will mention them as far as I can recollect. First of their sons was Ethan, then William, Salmon, Daniel, Silas, Hiram and Morgan. I think there was a daughter married to David Hatch. There are none of them living here; I think some are still living west.
Thomas, another brother, had but one son, John S. Pennal, another brother, had two sons and two daughters. The sons were named Levi and Ezra. One daughter married James Clark, the other married Ruggles Rider. Some of Clark’s family are still living among us- Mrs. Weed and Mrs. Philo Higgins.
Another brother of the old stock of Grovers, came here later. It was Judge John Grover from Auburn and father of S. G. Grover, who came here from Auburn. He was engaged in mercantile business there, also after he came here. He filled many offices of trust; was justice of the peace for many years, and once represented Livingston County in the legislature of this state. He had four children John Morgan, Rufus K., Harvey T., and Lydia M., now Mrs. J. D. Hendershott; all three now living here. Hosea Grover was the first person to start a store in Springwater. After him, Dr. J. B. Norton and Harvey S. Tyler built a store about 1824, where Allen & Whitlock’s store now is, and commenced selling goods, and the business has been continued at that place by different ones.
Eliplislet Chamberlin and wife, two very old people, lived with Jonathan Lawrence. Mrs. Lawrence was their daughter also Mrs. Alvah Southworth, and Soloman K. Chamberlin was their son. The old people died here and were buried in the old burying ground on the Tyler farm. S. K. Chamberlin, better known as General Chamberlin, came from Dalton, Mass. to Springwater. He got the title of General by serving in the war of 1812, in the Militia of Massachusetts. He was a carpenter and joiner by trade. He built many buildings here, one of which is the present Methodist parsonage, in which he lived for many years, the last of his life. He had four children, one son, Eliphalet, and three daughters, Harriet, Lucy, and Juliet. Harriet married Harvey S. Tyler and two of their children are still living here viz: Salmon C. and Harvey W. Lucy married Thomas C. Grover and raised a number of children, whom many of the old residents will remember. Juliet married Francis D. Brown. She died quite young. Eliphalet removed to Mt. Morris and died there years ago. Wells Chamberlin came here about 1820. He lived on the west part of A. G. Marvin’s farm. A barn which he built is still standing there. He married Miranda, daughter of John Marvin. After living here a few years they removed to Ypsilanti, Mich., where he died a few years since. Niger D. Chamberlin and Arnold Godfrey, two farmers from the town of Lima came about 1820, and bought of Samuel Story the farm sad mill now owned by S. C. Tyler. They worked at clearing the land and sawing lumber at the mill. After a couple of years Godfrey sold his half of the property to Ira Day. They worked it together for some two years, when Chamberlin sold his share to Day and went back to his old farm in Lima. Ira Day continued to live there until about 1828, when he sold the premises to Harvey S. Tyler and the property has remained in the Tyler family ever since. This brings me to Hugh Wilson’s first miller, Adam Stabb. He was a little chunk of a Pennsylvania Dutchman, about five feet high. He was a peculiar old man and will be remembered by some of the old residents (especially N. R. Hopkins). The next miller was Aaron Hale. He had quite a large family of children. I remember three sons, Alvah, Amasa B., and Marvill, and a number of daughters, one of whom was the late Mrs. Amos Hoot. I will now mention the Roberts family. The old man, John Roberts, had a large family of boys and girls. I recollect William, John Jr., Samuel, Benjamin, Rufus and Daniel; also two daughters, Anna and Rebecca. They were young ladies when I was a boy. Anna married a man by the name of Flora of Sparta, and Rebecca married John Traxler, of whom Adam Traxler of Springwater was a son. I will now return to John Roberts. He sold his farm in the valley with the intention of going west. So William went west to find a new home, he found a place in the state of Indiana on the Wabash river and came back and began to prepare to move to the far west, but for some reason they changed their minds and settled near the south-west corner of Springwater, in what has lately been known as Carney Hollow, which gave the place the name of Wabash, and it was well known by that name for many years by all the old residents of Springwater.
Dr. David Henry was the first physician in Springwater to my Knowledge. He lived near where Jacob Snyder now lives. He was considered a first class doctor, and was the only one in town for a number of years. He had quite a number of children. They are now all dead. Dr. Elisha C. Day was the next. He came about 1820. He, too was a first class doctor in his day; but he has long since passed away. He left two children, one daughter, Cordelia, now the wife of Daniel E. Dyer of this place, and one son, Horace H. Day, now living in Michigan. Dr. John B. Norton was the next. He came here about 1824. and commenced practice as a physician and surgeon, and selling goods in company with Harvey S. Tyler. He met with success, and was liked as a doctor generally but he is too well remembered to need anything in particular from me. He left a number of children. One son, Wm. H. Norton, is the only one residing in this town. Dr. Arnold Gray came here about 1827, and commenced practice with Dr. Norton. After one or two years he and Norton dissolved partnership, and he practiced on his own account. He had an extensive ride, and probably rode more miles over the hills of Springwater than any other man, for he practiced for over fifty years, and until his death, which took place seven or eight years since. He had three children, one son and two daughters. The son and one daughter are dead. One daughter, Mrs. Dr. T. D. Connor, is still living in town. David Gaff came from Burlington, Otsego county, N. Y. , and located on the farm where the south grist mill is, about 1818. He built a saw mill and after a few years built a grist mill on the site of the present mills. He finally sold his property here and went west to Northern Illinois, about 1833. Daniel Day father of E. C. Day, before mentioned, and a number of other sons and daughters all came from Burlington, Otsego county, N. Y., and settled in the valley near where Jacob Snyder now lives. I will mention some of the children as far as I recollect. Of the sons there were Daniel Jr., Harry, Russel, Elisha C., David and Erastus; of the daughters there were Eunice the wife of David Holmes, and Nancy the wife of David Goff.
Martin Hopkins also came from Burlington to Springwater. He arrived here with his family in October, 1819. He located on Wm. Brewer’s south farm, a little west of the mills. He had a large family of children. I will mention some of them. Of the sons there were Martin D. Hopkins, who died a few years since; Norman R. Hopkins who is still living among us, and as well known to you as to me. Luther R. Hopkins, Esq., is still living hero and well known to you all. Albert G. Hopkins the youngest son went to Wisconsin many years ago and died there. Of the daughters that came here were Eunice, wife of Dr. E. C. Day, Emily, wife of Josiah Mack and mother of Albert, Herman D., and Charles. Diantha, wife of Franklin Kellogg; Delia A., wife of the late Henry Wilcox. Martin Hopkins held many town offices in this town, and was one of the justices of the peace for a great number of years, and perhaps did as much business as justice as any man here.
Aldrich Wiley came to this town about 1820, and worked at wagon making in a shop in connection with his brother John’s blacksmith shop on the corners, near John Mc Crossen’s place. After one or two years he returned to the village of Lima and worked at his trade as a wagon maker until 1834. He then came back to Springwater, and he and John Wiley purchased the mills where Wm. Brewer now lives. Aldrich bought the farm where Chas. F. Smith resides, which he occupied until his death a few years since. “Uncle Aldrich” was too well known to require any comments from me. Varnum Barber came to the valley about 1824. He was a hatter by trade and made hats for all who saw fit to call upon him. He built a house and shop where Frank Doughty now lives. He worked there for a few years, then sold out and built where David Curtis’ evaporator now is. He worked there a short time and sold to Harvey S. Tyler, and then built the house where David Curtis now lives. After a few years he sold and built the house where Horace Barber now lives, where he remained until his death a number of years since. He had a number of children. Some of them are now living here, viz: Henry, Horace, George and Rosannah; some of them are living in other places. There were three men by the name of Gaston living here who I remember, viz: Ebenezer, William and Ira. All had families. Ebin, as he was called, I recollect worked some at manufacturing the old style wooden “Bull Plow” which would be a curiosity to the young people of this day. The mold boards were made from a winding tree so as to give them the right shape and work with the grain of the wood, I remember a large oak tree that grew at the foot of the hill near the house built by James Fisher, which had the right wind and there were many pieces taken from it for mold boards. Elam Northrup was another old resident. He lived in the hollow a little north of the cemetery. He had a brother, James Northrup, here a little later and lived on the side hill a little west of Brewer’s south mill. David Holmes was another old resident. He moved to Lima and died there many years ago. Simeon King settled on the south part of Jacob Snyder’s farm. He had two sons, Martin and Mason A., also two or three daughters. They will be remembered by the old inhabitants. Benjamin Carpenter came from Cayuga County in 1817 with all his family of sons and daughters, wife and mother. The old lady grandmother, or little granny as she was called by the children, was a little old woman who lived to a remarkable age, and was near one hundred years when she died. One of the sons of Willis Carpenter was married to Electa Barnes, before he came to Springwater and they had a large family of children. I will give their names: First, Almira, Roxey, John, William, Serril S., Clark B. , Willis Jr., Rowland, Chancey, Ira, Electa and Jane, some of whom arc still living -here. Another son, Benjamin Jr., married a daughter of Simeon King after he came here and raised a family, one of whom is Mrs. Jesse Farley. One other son, Amos, married a daughter of Noah Crandle and removed west. One daughter, Polly, married Lyman Herrick, another daughter Elsie married Schuyler Moses and moved to Rochester. Eli Harrington, another old resident, lived here for a number of years. He had two sons, Carver and Ira; also four daughters, Mary, Mrs. Daniel Grove, Mercia, Mrs. Hickok, Manila married Wm. B. Peabody, and Laura married Wm. Parshall; last the two long since died. There were four brothers by the name of Culver. John, or Esq. Culver, lived on the farm now owned by Harvey Wilcox in the old house at the forks of the road. Lyman lived on the farm now owned by Ezra Gray. Noble and Samuel both lived near the old tannery building. They, all of them, had an interest in a saw mill where the tannery now stands. Lyman died here, and the others removed west. George Farnsworth lived on the C. W. Willis farm. Plinney Graves lived on the next farm south, now owned by Jacob Snyder. David Wilher, Samuel Wilber, Jacob Ackley, and Elisha Bogue were all early settlers, living near the south end of the valley. Luther Farewell I had nearly forgotten. He lived where Danford Doughty now lives. He was a very small man but full of life and bluster; could make as much noise as a big man. He built a saw mill near the forks of the road and sawed lumber and made many shingles. I will now go back and mention some I have missed. Isaac Walker came to Springwater in 1820. He was a wool carder and cloth dresser by trade. He bought a piece of land of David Goff and built a building on the mill stream, a few rods north of Wm. Brewers house, on his south farm where he did a heavy business carding wool and dressing cloth, which was brought from every direction for ten or fifteen miles around, as most of the inhabitants at the tune manufactured their own cloth by spinning and weaving their own wool, and then sending to the mill to be dressed. After four or, five years Walker sold out to Russell Kellogg who carried on the business for a number of years, and about 1830 he sold to his brother Frank Kellogg, who continued the business for a number of years and as long as the business was profitable, when it was abandoned. This was the first business of the kind in town except that H. HHS. Tyler had a small establishment in the gulley on E. A. Robinson’s lot east of the village where a little carding wool was done for a year or two. Now as the business of carding and cloth dressing proved profitable competition sprung up, and about 1824, Joseph Wood and John Wiley built a clothing works, so called, on the site of the rake and cradle factory now owned by George Tucker, where they carried on the business until about 1880, when Joseph Kellogg came from Amsterdam, this state, and purchased the property and carried on the business extensively for a number of years, when it came unprofitable and was abandoned. Mr. Kellogg died near twenty years since, but his wife now about eighty years of age is still with us, as also their son, Nathan A. Kellogg, and their daughter, Mrs. Harvey H. Marvin.
I will now give a short description of the north village. There were a few buildings clustered about the corners. 1st, Jonathan Lawrence’s house and barn, John Wiley’s house and shop, David Lather’s house and tannery, T. L. Spaffard’s tavern, and a house where Serril S. Carpenter lives. This comprises the whole village except that Alva Southworth had a whiskey still and hog yard on the lot where Fanny Gray now lives. Now this whiskey still was the all important point of attraction for those who had an appetite for the ardent, and upon a rainy or leisure day there were many who were In the habit of assembling there to spend a pleasant hour with their friends, and take a little to revive their drooping spirits; and it often happened that there was quite a company assembled and that some of them would imbibe a little too freely of the crater, and become quarrelsome, and a few free fights would be indulged in, and some would go home with a black eye, and after sleeping off the effect of the stimulus would awake the next morning ready for another good time, and in consequence of what has been stated, the village, or corner, received perhaps the appropriate, if not honorable name of “Hell’s half acre,” which name it bore for some time. But now we can say that the old still has gone long ago, and there has been some addition to the village, and it has lost the old name and we think will compare well with the rest of the town for we have almost forgotten that there ever was any whiskey here and still the people are happy.
Having given from recollection some of the names of the early residents of the valley, I will now mention some on the East Hill, commencing with the south line of the town. Ahijah Barnes was an early settler. He lived on the road to Wayland opposite to where Wm. Northrop now lives. He died about 1824, and left a wife and two daughters, one of whom died soon after. The other is still living. She is Mrs. David H. Grover, who is well known as being one of the old residents of the valley and is now hale and hearty at the age of 68 years. Zenos Ashley came from Freeport, now Conesus, and settled on the farm now owned by Wm. Walker, and on which is the cemetery known as the Ashley burying ground. He lived there for many years and raised a family. I will give them as far as I recollect. First, Edwin, Lurendus, now living in Rochester, Darwin, removed to the state of Indiana. Alfonso was a dwarf. He died long ago. Also two daughters, Lucretia and Harriet. Lucretia married H. B. Rice and Harriet married Allen Parker. David Frazer came to Springwater about 1810, and settled on the farm now owned by John Frazer, on the south line of the town, on which he lived for a great number of years, and until his death which was many years since, though he lived to a good old age. He had quite a family of children, John, David and others, whose names I do not now recall. Solomon Doud lived next north on the west side of the highway; he has been mentioned before. He had a number of children; of the sons I remember Samuel L., Hiram and Orlando. One daughter married John Roberts and was the mother of a number of Roberts now living on west hill and in Sparta. One married Mason A. King and removed to Michigan with their family a long time ago. One other daughter, Olive, lived a maiden lady, and died on west hill a few years since. Deacon Ezra Walker lived on the east side of the highway opposite to Doud. He was quite a prominent man in his day and held many town offices. He had a large family of children. I will mention some of them as far as I recollect. First, William, the oldest son married a daughter of Jonathan Gates; they raised a family of children some of whom are now here. Leland, a younger son married Lyda Grover and they now reside at Canaseraga. Of the daughters there were Mrs. Geo. Stratton, Mrs. Hiram Parshall, Mrs. Nelson Willis, and Harriet and Lucinda. Don’t recollect who they married. There was a man by the name of Ward; don’t recollect his given name. He lived on the John Howell place, near the Bell school house. I can recall some of the children: One son by the name of Chancey went west: one son Daniel also left town and has since died. One daughter married Damel J. Wescott, and another daughter married Daniel Wilcox, and is still living near the old homestead. She is well known here. Joseph Carpenter lived on the farm where Edwin Carpenter now lives. He and his wife both died there a number of years since. They left tine son Lucian B. Carpenter who soon after died leaving two sons. Edwin and Frank. Jesse Farley came to Springwater about 1816, and settled on the farm on which Patrick Doil now lives, with his family consisting of a wife and six children, two sons and four daughters. Horace amid Harvey mire both dead: Polly’ married George Hewett. Minerva married Alva S. Wheaton, and Betsey married Harvey Johnson. Mrs. Johnson is the only surviving daughter. About 1825, Mrs. Jesse Fancy died, and in 1826 he married the widow Abijah Barnes, with whom he lived for a number of years, and until her death in 1852. About the time of his second marriage he moved to the farm where Henry Clapp now lives, and resided there for a number of years, after which he sold the farm to his son, Harvey, and came to the valley, where his second wife died, and in process of time he married Betsey Carpenter who is still living. The result of this marriage was one son, George Farley, who is now living at the south end of the valley with his mother. Jesse Fancy died, and was buried September 11, 1870. Nathan W. Adams lived on the north part of the Engel farm on the south side of the big gull. He married an Egleston; they had quite a family, but I do not distinctly recollect them. One was here a year or two since teaching writing. An old man named Egleston lived on the J. M. Root farm. I have forgotten his given name. He had a number of children. There were a number of families on the hill road east of Herrick Street. I recollect the Brigs, Hicks and Smiths. The father of Captain Ebenezer Smith was a ship carpenter by trade, and I have heard say that he hewed the flooring for his log house with a ship carpenter’s broad axe in as good style as if it had been sawed at the mill. These families are well remembered by thc old residents here. I will now mention Israel Parshall who married his cousin, the oldest daughter of David Parashall. Her name was Deborah. She was better known afterwards as “Aunt Deb Parshall.” They settled in the big gulley near J. M. Root’s farm, where they built a small grist and saw mill. I well remember carrying grain to the mill to be ground. After a number of years they sold to Reuben W. Fowler and went over on the Cohocton stream, near where Archey G. Parshall now lives, and built other mills, and there spent the remainder of their lives. David Parshall senior came to Springwater in an early day, and purchased a large quantity of land, and finally settled on the south side of the road opposite to Samuel A. Howe. He had a number of children. I will give their names as far as I know. First. Deborah. before mentioned, Ass, David Jr., Amass, Sally, William and Ruth. Asa married Aurilla Hull, and they had five children. Harriet, Mrs. A. S. Root; Emily who died in 1855; Edwin A. and John D. are both living here in the valley with their mother. David Parshall jr. was also married and had a family of children some of whom I will mention. Henry married Lucina Root, and they are now living in Michigan. Emma married Nathan Robinson. She died a number of years since but left several children, who are still living about here. Hiram and Stephen are both married and have families living here, and are well known. Lewis and Edward are both dead, I believe. William Parshall married Lura, daughter of Eli Harrington. They moved west. Ruth Parshall married George Chase, and they had several children.
I will now give a few names of those who came to this town a little later. There were Alvin Simonds, Jeremiah Simonds, John Davis, Isaiah Horton, Norris King, James King, Evander Gibbs, Joseph Guile, Samuel Woods, Rockwell Marvin, Levi Brockway, Levi Brockway jr., Amos Root, Anson Cole, Wm. Galley, James B. Hewett, and Ezra Brown. These with many others settled in the south-eastern part of the town.
I will now pass on to the north about half a mile, and a little north of Levi Brockway’s, where we come to the place where Jacob Cannon kept a tavern. Cannon came to Springwater about 1810, and settled at the last mentioned place, where he resided for a long time; and it being a central place, or near the center of the town, it became a place for doing town business, such as holding elections, town meetings, and other public gatherings, for about a dozen years. New there was a little transaction that took place there that may be worth mentioning. About 1827 or 1828, there was a lodge of Free Masons in Springwater, and they held lodge meetings in an upper room of this old tavern. It was about the time that William Morgan wrote a book purporting to be an expose of the secrets of Masonry. He was arrested and confined in Canandaigua jail, and in a short time was privately taken from the jail and conveyed to parts unknown, which created a great excitement and caused the anti-Masonic party to spring up; and in Springwater there was an anxiety to know more about the secret society, and among the number who were desirous to ascertain the workings of the mysterious order, was Mrs. Jacob Cannon, or “Aunt Nabby,” as she was called. As she knew of the time of meeting of the lodge, she provided a way of access to the garret over the lodge room. She made a small opening in the ceiling where she could both see and hear what was said and done in the lodge room. She was in the habit of repairing to her hiding place before the assembling of the meeting, and remain during the session. By this means she learned the time when there were to be some new members initiated. Thinking that she must have someone with her to enjoy the show, she got a young man to help her watch, and they witnessed the proceedings. Now as It is hard for one to keep a secret, it is much harder for two, and In some way it leaked out that they had been watching. It created a great commotion, but Aunt Nabby stood firm and did not scare worth a cent. There were no more meetings held in that house, and I think not many more in town for a long time, for soon after this the treasurer of the society stole the charter and the funds in the treasury, which were mostly notes given in lieu of money, that being a scarce article; and the lodge disbanded, and what has been done since I do not know. I think all who were members of the lodge are now dead.
I will now leave the old tavern and pass on north towards Marvin’s corners. About half way between the two places we come to the spot where in those early times the Marvin’s had a distillery for the purpose of using up the surplus corn and rye and extracting the spirits therefrom, and making what is now considered the spirit of evil by most people; but at that time it was considered not only a lucrative but honorable business, as most of the male part of the population, at least, were in the habit of imbibing more or less of the exhilarating fluid; but there has a great change come over the people, and now the manufacture and sale of whiskey has become unpopular, and in Springwater is looked upon as one of the evils that has passed away. While speaking of stills I will mention two others. Some time previous to 1830, Isaiah Horton and Anson Cole built a still on the east side of the gull near the north-west corner of Mark Boot’s farm, where they did quite an extensive business; also Ira Gilbert built a still near, and a little south of where Thomas Reynolds now lives, and for a long time did an extensive business in making whiskey.
I now come to Marvin’s Corners. About 1820, Aaron Marvin and others came to Springwater from Otsego County, N. Y. Marvin located on the south-east corner, where he spent the remainder of his life. Mrs. Marvin, the wife of Aaron, was a daughter of Axer Cole whom I recollect when a very old man. I think he lived until he was near ninety years old, and was active and smart to the last. He died about fifty years since. He had other daughters. One married Benjamin Snyder, one Alexander McCuller and one Johnson Wilcox. I will now go back to the family of Aaron Marvin. He had a number of children, whom I will mention as memory serves me. Luretta who married Salmon Waterbury, Jane who married John B. Norton, George C. who married Sally Hyde, daughter of Jesse Hyde. He died here in 1862. Harry married a daughter of Aurelius Hyde. Harry died in 1830. Curtis W. married a daughter of Soloman I. Teed. He died about 1830, leaving several children. The next was Lewis. He removed to Allegany County. Abram went to Michigan. Alonzo married a Miss Thorn. They went to Michigan. Sarah, the youngest daughter, married James Ingalsbee. She is now living in Michigan. Aaron Marvin died in 1845.
I will now return to another son-in-law of Azer Cole. Benjamin Snyder, I learn, arrived in Springwater on the 20th day of March. 1817, and settled on the farm now owned by Scott W. Snyder, with his family. He considered it an early spring, because the people were through making maple sugar when he arrived. It was usual for the sugar season to last until the middle of April or later. Notwithstanding in the early spring the summers of 1816 and 1817 were very cold, especially that of 1816. The family of Benjamin consisted of the following children: Lysander, Alonzo, Nelson F., Henry J., Dewitt C., and one daughter, Adaline. All of them hare marred and most of them left children among us. Nelson F. and Dewitt C. are the only ones now living. Benjamin Snyder was a carpenter and joiner by trade, and built many of the first frame buildings in town, some of them are still left as monuments of the olden times. One I will mention. It is the house in which Frank Goodno now lives, belonging to N. A. Kellogg, on the Southwarth farm, which was built over sixty years ago. Benjamin Snyder and Aaron Marvin were two of the strong pillars of the Methodist church of Springwater, and remained so to the end of their days; and let me say that in their day the Springwater church was a strong and working church, and the members could be recognized without their telling you.
Alexander McCuller left town long ago, and I was not well enough acquainted with him to give a description of his family. Johnson Wilcox had a family of children. One daughter married David Lawton and went west. Another daughter married Aaron H. Root. She is the only one left here. Another daughter married Julius Higgins. Henry Wilcox married Delia A. Hopkins. He died at Cohocton a number of years since leaving a number of children. Ebem’, another son married a daughter of Judge Robinson. They both died a few years since, leaving three children, viz: Ida, Mrs. George Willis; Harvey, and Willie, both living here.
I will now return to Marvin’s corners. On the north-east corner in an early day we find Henry J. Niles. He was not only a farmer, but was a carpenter by trade. He built many of the first frame buildings here. Some of them are still left as momentos of olden times. I first remember of his building a barn for David Goff on William Brewer’s south farm. This was in 1820 or 1821. The old barn is still there, and to all appearances will last for many years. Another barn of his building is now on the old Joad Gillet farm, on the road to Wayland. Mr. Niles married a widow Carpenter who had three children. The oldest, Matilda, married Ezra Grover, and went west. She is still living. The next, Thirsa, is Mrs. Bullard. She is now living here and is well known by all. One son, Serril, died here a few years since. Mr. Niles and wife have both died and gone to their rest. They had four children, two sons and two daughters. One son, Henry, died young; the other son, James L. Niles, is now living in this village. Lucy married John Phillips and is now living in Michigan. Hannah married C. D. Jones. She died a number of years since. James L. Niles still owns the old farm where he resided until about three years since, when he removed to the village, he married a daughter of Curtice W. Marvin and has three children, two sons and one daughter, all living. One of the sons, H. J. Niles, is now editor and proprietor of the Springwater Enterprise. Nathaniel W. Niles, a brother of Henry J., also came here in an early day and lived with his brother. He was a soldier in the war of 1812, and was taken prisoner and confined in an English prison ship, and taken to England and there kept as prisoner until the close of the war, when he was sent home. He lived for many years, the last of his time in the village of Dansville, where he died but a few years since at a good old age. I will now mention Samuel 0. Pearl. He lived when I first knew him, east of Marvin’s corners, on the Samuel A. Howe farm. His wife was a sister of Samuel Story who has been mentioned before. They had three children, one daughter and two sons. Sally Pearl married Samuel Howell and went west. Stephen Pearl married a daughter of Isaiah Horton and moved to Michigan. Orsemus Pearl also went to Michigan and married there. He died a short time ago. Thomas Vincent was a man living on a part of the Samuel A. Howe farm, with a wife and three children, named Abigail, Gideon and Michael. In the fall of 1826 he had been to the valley, and was going home in the evening. When a little east of Marvin’s corners, where there were some peach trees with peaches on, he got upon the fence to pick some to eat, and in getting them he slipped and fell on the fence in such a way as to rupture a blood-vessel, by reason of which he soon died. Mrs. Niles, who lived a short distance from there, heard him groaning and went to his relief, and learned how he was hurt. Now this man Vincent was a poor man, and left his family in very destitute circumstances, so much so that Aaron Marvin provided a coffin for him to be buried in. Not as any disgrace to him, but to show the contrast between the manner of a Christian burial in 1826 and 1887, I will give a vote of the town of Springwater at the annual town meeting, held on the 3rd day of April, 1827: “Voted that the Poormasters pay Aaron Marvin two dollars for providing a coffin for Thomas Vincent.” Now I think this came nearer to a Christian burial than those who are buried in a coffin costing fifty or one hundred dollars, and taking from the living what they need for their comfort and support, with no benefit to the dead, and to carry out a foolish fashion gotten up by the rich, for I verily believe that a man would rest as easily, sheep as sweetly, and be as readily found and as easily brought forth when the graves shall be called upon to give up their dead, and I think be as likely to hear the “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou to the joy of thy Lord,” if he had been laid to rest in a coffin costing two dollars instead of two hundred. I will now give an account of Vincent’s family. His widow after a time married Samuel P. Benedict, and finally went to Michigan. Abigail went to live with Harvey S. Tyler, and lived with him until she grew to womanhood, and then went to Michigan. Gideon died in this town a short time since, and Michael I think went west.
I will now pass on north to the next four corners. Just west of there we come to the place where Archibald Willis located on the farm where Nelson Willis now lives. Archibald Willis was a son of Thomas Willis, who also settled in Springwater in an early day. Mrs. Willis, the wife of Archibald, previous to her marriage was Deborah Wadams. She first married a man by the name of Jennings by whom she had two children, Eunice and Oliver, after which Jennings died, and after a time she was married to Archibald Willis, and about the month of January, 1816, they left Cayuga county, N. Y., and removed to Springwater with their family of children, and located as before stated. I will now mention their children as I recollect them. Eunice Jennings married David Herrick; Oliver spent his days here, and died many years ago; Lucena Willis married Allen Lownsbury and removed to Michigan; Enoch also went to Michigan and married there; he is now dead; Horace married Lucy Brockway; he is dead; his wife, “Aunt Lucy. “ is now living at Wayland. Caleb W. married a daughter of Stephen Robinson; they are now enjoying their old age on their farm in Springwater. Nelson married a daughter of Deacon Walker; they are now living on the old homestead, and happily enjoying their declining years among their surrounding children. Electa, the youngest daughter, is now living with Stephen Robinson, her fourth husband, at Dansville, N. Y., and bids fair to live many years yet.
I will now go up the hill east, to a little west of where Simeon Smith now lives, where Sylvester Goodno lived in an early day. He came from the north-east part of this state, up in Essex county, and settled here with his family, consisting of a wife and a number of children. Their names were, Nathan, Enos, Israel, Anna, Sophrona, and I think some others. The old Gent, had some peculiarities. One was that he never wore anything upon his head, but went summer and winter with no covering except the natural hair that grew thereon. One time he was going to Geneva to the land office, and his friends persuaded him to wear a hat, but the first place he stopped at he took off his hat and when he started he forgot to put it on and went the rest of the way bare-headed, as usual. He was an industrious hard working man. After living here a number of years he, with some of his family, went to Potter County, Penn., and there we leave him and come back to time Willis Corners; and on the south-west corner of the Joel Hudson homestead we find John W. Barnes. He lived there at the first organization of this town; was town clerk several times and held other town offices; finally removed to Wyoming County. I do not recollect about his family. Joel Hudson came from Cayuga County, I think in 1820, and settled on the farm north of above mentioned corners with his family. They had five children, three sons and two daughters. They were Matthew, now dead; Luther, now in Minnesota; James M., residing here; Lydia Ann, Mrs. Walter Bryant, living at Wayland; Charlotte, who died long ago. Joel Hudson was a soldier in the war of 1812, and is now a pensioner. After he came to Springwater he held many town offices and finally was elected justice of -the peace, which office he held for about forty years. He is ninety-two years old, and is as smart as many men at sixty, and comes to the valley a distance of one and a half miles on foot nearly every Sunday to attend church, whether it storms or is fair weather. Going north we come to the place where Isaac Howe lived in an early day. He moved down where Mrs. Bottle now lives, and after a few years went west. Ira Howe, a brother of Isaac, lived on the hill, on the David Smith farm. He went west after a few years. We next come to Asbell Lamont, who first settled on the farm where Charles Curtice now lives, and where he lived until his death many years since. He was a farmer and worked his own farm, but in addition to farming he took delight in hunting for deer and other game, which was plenty in those olden times. I recollect of being with him one day hunting for deer when he brought one down by shooting it through the head when going at a fast run. Lamont had a number of children. I will give them as far as I remember. Of the sons, there were David, Smith, Niles and Isaac, Ira, Lyman and Hiram: two daughters, Phmbe married to Wm. Winfield and Charlotte married to Stephen Monk.
I have mentioned Isaac Howe as having resided where Martin Collins now lives. When he left there Ira Howell came there and built a furnace and went into the manufacturing of plows, known as the Springwater Howell Plow, which business he carried on for a number of years, when he sold out to Stephen L. Higgins, who continued the manufacture for some time by the assistance of George Hall, who will be remembered by many of the older residents. We will now pass on to the next farm north where Alanson Tiffany lived on the east side of the road where Henry Lawrence now hives, and Truman Tiffany on the west side where George Knapp now lives. They were brothers and each had families. There was an old man, their father, also living there. I think his name was Joel, but am not sure, he was a short, chunked man, and some of the boys nick named him the “Jack of Clubs.” I believe he was a good man for all of nick names. They all sold out and went to Michigan where some of the children are still living. Elisha Bailey came on to the west farm, and William Willson on the east farm, and after a few years Willson sold to John E. Lawrence and moved to Canadice, and remained there until his death, winch was a short time since. He lived to a great age, I think ninety years or over. As I have mentioned John Lawrence I will go back and give some recollections of him and his family. When I first knew him he and his wife, Maria, were living on west hill on what- was known afterward as the John Moot farm. They then had one child. This was about 1820. In a year or two he sold to John Moot and moved to Sparta, where Welcome Neadham now lives. After a few years he came to Spring-water and purchased the George Farnsworth farm, where C. W. Willis now lives, and after a time he sold to Henry Skinner and bought the Willson farm where he lived until his death, about thirty years since. As they had quite a large number of children, I will give their names. Of the boys there were James, Loren, Ira, Charles, Elijah. David, George and Henry. Of the daughters there were Ciarissa, Eliza, and Mary.
We will now pass on north to the next farm where Isaac Williams lived for many years, and kept a tavern. He, too, had a large family of children, two sons, Harlow and Harry, and a number of daughters. One married Ashbill B. Grover, and one married a man by the name of Johnson, Harriet married Sidney Brown, Neoma married Areuna Gilbert. Mary married A. B. Green and after her death he married Ruba, another daughter. Sobrina married Levi Snyder. Eliza married Reuben Snyder. Isaac Williams and wife both died long since, and Christopher Ford bought the old tavern property, where he still lives.
Christopher Ford came from Cayuga County to Springwater about 1821, and settled on the East Hill, and has lived there since, except a short time he lived in Richmond, after which he came back to where line is now living with his daughter, Mrs. Moses West. He had two sons and five daughters. Their names were as follows: Avery A. , who married a daughter of Liberty W. Butler; John, who married a daughter of David Lyon; Lucina, who married Orra Crooks; Shalina, who married Gideon Vincent; Phebe, who married Heman Crooks; Eunice, who married Moses West. One daughter died many years ago. Mrs. Ford died some ten years since, hut Christopher is still living at the advanced age of ninety-two years, and is quite smart, and can walk two or three miles to the village and return. Gideon Brown lived where John Ford now resides, in an early day. After a few years he moved away. Jesse Brown also lived in that neighborhood. He is long since dead and gone.
Ira Jackman lived for many years on the old Josiah Fuller farm. He is dead but his wife is still living there. She was a daughter of Josiah Fuller. Jesse Fuller first settled on the Hiram Becker place, and after a few years John Chapins came there and remained until his death in 1831. Thomas Willis settled on the west side of the road opposite the Christian church, and after a few years he moved to Ohio. He has been mentioned before. Isaac Borden lived on the north part of the same farm, and after a time went to the valley and kept a tavern, where Maurice Brown lived. After living there a few years he went west to Indiana. Harry Gates lived on the Wiley Jackman farm for a few years, and up to 1840. Do not recollect who was the first settler there. Adam Zieley lived on the opposite side of the road. He died and left a wife and three children. The wife was a Tiffany, sister to Alanson and Truman.
We will now cross the big gull to where Clark Stuart now lives, and where in an early day Benjamin Reynolds first located, amid where he lived for many years. He built a grist and saw mill in the gull south of the house, where he used to do custom grinding and sawed quite a large amount of lumber. In the spring of 1840, Gooden Thayer and myself had a contract for building a lattice bridge across the gull near the said mill which required a large amount of hemlock lumber, which was all sawed at this mill. To show the difference in the price of lumber then and now I will state that I bought of Harry Gates, on the Wiley Jackman farm, all the timber for said bridge delivered in the log at the mill for $2.50 per thousand and I paid Seth W. Sylvester, who then owned the mill, $2.00 per thousand for sawing, so that the lumber cost me $4.50 per thousand at the bridge. I also bought all the shingles, shaved pine for $1.00 per thousand.
In 1846, at the time of the big freshet, the gull was completely cleaned out, and the mills and also Lomice’s house in the gull below went down stream and into the valley. Mrs. Lomice and two children were carried down, and one child came out alive. The others were dead. One of the mill stones was found on Norton’s field a number of rods west of the road; such was the force of the water that it moved everything in its course. Jiles Norton lived on the north side of the Stuart farm. He lived to be over ninety years old and died at the house of his daughter, Mrs. Stephen Walbridge. Green Waite and Francillo Stuart lived on the Furman Thompson farm. They are both long since dead. Josiah Short lived for a time where George Bailey lives. Liberty W. Butler lived for many years where George Buckner now lives. He was a blacksmith by trade and a noted horse shoer. He died over twenty years ago, and his family went west.
I will now give the names of some of the persons on the East hill at the time of the organization of the town, and those who came here soon after. I will commence with Ephraim Calkins. He lived east from the Christian church. He married Betsey Northrop, a daughter of Elam Northrop. Samuel Sparks, John Porter, Samuel Gott, Obedish Barber, Arthur Phelps, Alfred Phelps, Clark Lankton, John Town, John Andrus, Noah Crittenden, Pascal P. Cheney, William Fairchild, Eliakem Grover, Luke Bemis, Handle B. Martin, Geo. Flanders, Jeremiah Whalen. James Moore was elected a justice of the peace, and served the town as such for a term of years. Ozias Reed will be remembered as a hunch-back, having been drawn out of shape by rickets, causing him to be a very short man, but full of life and ambition. John Esty, Abel Green, Nathan W. Austin lived on the island. David Bliss had a family of children. I will mention some of them. Of the sons there were John, Andrew and Benjamin. The first two are dead, but Benjamin has been in the habit of visiting his old home occasionally. I saw him here the past summer. He is over eighty years old, but is able to tramp from place to place, which he continues to do. One daughter married Josiah Fuller, and one married Aaron Fuller. Henry Popino came from Cayuga County in an early day and lived here for a number of years. He married a Miss Wadams, a sister to John Wadams, and Mrs. Archibald Willis. I do not remember what became of him. William Peabody came here early and settled on the farm where Alva Peabody now lives, and resided there for many years. I will mention some of his children, as I remember them. First, William, Jr., who settled a little west of Tabors’ Corners, and resided there for many years, and until his death which happened many years since. He was a farmer and a citizen of considerable importance. Was justice of the peace for a time and held other offices of trust. He leaves two sons, William B. and Sheffield W. Daniel Peabody, a brother of William, I recollect as having carried the mail between Springwater and Geneseo. He carried it on horseback once a week each way. He used to distribute the Livingston county paper along the route to all who saw fit to take it. He would start out with a pair of old-fashioned saddle-bags well filled, and leave them at the houses as he passed along. I think he moved to Pennsylvania. Alva Peabody went to Livonia and lived there a number of years, and then came back to the old homestead, where he is still living. He has raised a large family of children. Some are dead, some gone west and some living here. I will now mention Rufus Ricks and family. He came from Oneida County, N.Y., to Springwater in 1815, and settled on the farm on the south side of the road opposite Henry Ford’s farm. He had five sons and three daughters. I will give their names in order: James died many years since, Samuel also long since dead, Edmond dead and gone to rest: Lydia, Mrs. Erastus Barber, is now living with her daughter, Mrs. David G. Smith. She was 91 years old on the 27th day of October last. Esther, Mrs. Hossa H. Grover, died ten or twelve years since. Lewis is now living in Canadice, and was 85 years old last July, and is very active and smart for a person of his age. Hannah lived a maiden lady with her brother near Tabors Corners, in this town, until her death, some eight years since. Sylvester, the youngest son, was 75 years old on the 28th day of February, last. He is hale and hearty, living on his farm north of Tabors Corners. Erastus Barber was an early settler on the hill. He had a family of children. I will mention them as far as I recollect. There was Erastus, Jr., known as captain of a rifle company of militia. He was also a surveyor and did considerable business in that line. He died long since and left a wife and a number of children. Another son, Benadiah Barber, after living here until about 1880, removed west and I cannot give any further account of him. Of the daughters, one married Matthew Fuller, and after a time removed to Wisconsin. Another married Emery Swan, and another married Tobias Osburn. They both went to Wisconsin. One daughter married Thomas Osburn, and lived in the south part of Springwater for a number of years. Do not know what became of them. After the death of Erastus Barber his widow married Solomon Grover and removed to Wisconsin, where they both lived to a good old age, and finally died and went to their rest. Elisha Capron settled on the farm west of where L. D. Monk now lives. He was a soldier in the revolution and a pensioner from bullet wounds which he received, and had the marks to show. He was very patriotic and liked to talk over the old campaigns as well as any of the soldiers of the late rebellion do at the present time. I will mention his children. There was Elisha, Jr. He married a daughter of John Reace and lived for a time on the farm where Murray Doughty now lives, and then removed south. Clarissa married Mr. Whitman, who will be remembered as toll-gate keeper for a long time on the road to Dansville. Lewis H. Capron married a daughter of Aurelious Hyde. He lived many years on the hill south of Tabors Corners, and where he died, leaving a wife and children. One son, Orlando, died long ago. George is now living at Tabors Corners. Of his daughters, one is Mrs. John S. Wiley, one Mrs. Hiram Baker and one Mrs. Charles Sedgwick, of Dansville. Sylvester Capron married a daughter of Stephen Higgins. He, too, left a family of children, as follows: Wilber and Wesley Capron of Wayland, James Capron, Mrs. S. L. Whitlock, and Mrs. H. E. Allen, of this place. Mrs. Whitman and Sylvester were both killed by the cars at the Buffalo street crossing a few years since. James and Benjamin Henderson were brothers. Benjamin lived on the Lyman Morris farm, now owned by Murray Doughty, I recollect that when he was living there about 1824, there was a Methodist camp meeting held on the west part of the farm in the woods, which was the first camp meeting I ever attended. I will now mention a family of Rowells. There were John, Bethewel C., Jared M., and Benjamin, all living on the hill. John lived where Oscar Rodgers now lives. I will now mention some of his children. Ira, before mentioned as a furnaceman, Mark, Samuel, Bethewel, and one daughter, who married Silas Grover. Do not recollect further. Samuel Chapins, John Otto, Henry Muck, Elisha Cox, a family of Moltbeys, and many others who I cannot now call to mind, lived In Hunt’s Hollow, and on the side hill west of the hollow. Aaron J. Hunt, I think, once lived in the hollow, which gave the place its name. He moved up on the Cohocton stream and built and run a saw mill there for some time. Dr. A. L. Hunt of this place is a son of his. Two other sons are now living west. The old gentleman went to Michigan and died there, some 14 years ago. Lemuel Crocker and Isaac Koons both lived on the “Fort,” so called. They are both long since dead. Crocker moved to Michigan, Koons died here. One of his daughters, Mrs. Barber Eldridge, is still living here. Thomas Warner and Henry Warner, brothers, lived near each other, Thomas on the farm where he died a few years since, and where his son now lives. Henry lived on the south side of the road adjoining. He moved to Pennsylvania many years ago. John Green-back will be remembered by the old residents as keeping a tavern on the Robinson street corners, where he and Aunt Mittie used to deal out the three cent drinks of whiskey, and where at the town meeting, in 1883, the floor gave way and let a large number into the cellar with the cook stove.
About 1821 or 1822, Elder William Robinson, with his family came to Springwater from Cipeo, Cayuga County, N.Y., and settled on East hill, on what we call Robinson Street. There were five brothers, sons of William, whom I will now mention. Stephen, about 70 years ago, married Phebe Horton. They first settled on the farm where Edward Coats now lives, where they resided for a long time, and raised a family of fifteen children, all of whom lived to man and womanhood. The first death in the family was a daughter at the age of 18. Stephen, the father, is now living at Dansville, with his second wife. He was 88 years old last Oct. 10th, his wife, Phoebe, having died in 1881, at the age of 81 years. I will now give the names of the children in order: First, Malinda, now Mrs. C. Willis, living here; Esther married John Wheeler. She is now living somewhere west. Nathan married Emma, daughter of David Parshall. They are both dead, having left four children about here. William married Eliza Skinner. He died at Grand Rapids, Michigan. Ann Eliza married Samuel Norton. She is still living. Charles married a daughter of John Gilmore. He is living in town. Saloma died at the age of 18 years. Manila married Eber Wilcox. They are both dead, having left three children here. Rosannab married Harvey Wright, went to Michigan and died there. Candice married Henry Skinner. She died many years since. Stephen married a Miss Collins They are now living at the south end of the valley, with a large family of children. Phebe, Mrs. Daniel Norton, is now living in this village. Caleb died long ago. Mary is Mrs. Frank Wetmore of Bloods Corners. M. Jefferson is now a preacher and pastor of a Methodist church in Wisconsin. Joseph Robinson, settled on the hill, west of, and near Stephen, at first and after a few years moved on to the farm where D. Monk now lives, where he lived until his death, which was about forty years since. He had a family of twelve children. I will mention them: Henry, Sally, William, Edmond, now living in this village, and too well known to need any description from me; Carlton, George, Fayette, James, Mary Ann, Nelson, Joseph and Amos. Ten are now living, all of them in the western states except Edmond. Nathan Robinson, one of the brothers, I have no account of. Levi settled on the farm where Oscar Rogers now lives. He died a number of years since. He had a number of children. Henry is now living at Wayland. John I remember, and there were others I do not remember. David Robinson, the fifth son of William, I think now lives in Bristol, Ontario County, N. Y.
I recollect, living on the Robinson Street in an early day, two families by the name of Dyer. Samuel and Jotham. Samuel had a number of children. I can’t give all their names. One will be remembered, Russell, who acted a prominent part in the Anti-rent movement here a number of years since, when Alonzo Snyder was pounded most to death by them. Jotham or Deacon Dyer, as he was called, had a family of children. One son, Alson, I remember. He went to Jackson, Michigan, and held some important positions of trust there. Now, Jotham being a deacon of the Baptist church and a good man, it will do no harm to relate a little anecdote of him. Some of his neighbors had a little disagreement by which there was talk of going to law. It is probable that the deacon bad read his Bible more than he had the dictionary or legal terms; but being a peacemaker, volunteered to give them advice, he said they had better not go to law, but to pick three good “pernicious” men and leave it out to “refugees” as it was bad to have “intentions” in a neighborhood.
Rezi Monk came to Springwater in an early day and settled on the John H. Price farm, where he lived for a number of years and then moved on Robinson street, north of E. A. Robinson’s, where he lived the remainder of his days, and where he died some ten or twelve years since, his wife having died about two years previous. He was 86 years old at the time of his death. He was elected justice of the peace soon after he came here and was re-elected several times, holding the office for a long time. I have heard it remarked that very few if any of his judgments were reversed by the higher courts. He had five children, two sons and three daughters. Hannah and Phoebe both married and died many years ago. Lorenzo D., married Mary Ann Wetmore. They are living on the E. A. Robinson farm and are well-known by all. Stephen married Charlotte Lamont. He died about thirty years ago. Mary E., the youngest daughter, married E. A. Robinson. She died some three years since leaving her husband and four children, who are still living in this village. Elder John Cole was pastor of the first Baptist church of Springwater. He first lived on East hill. I remember of hearing him preach some strong orthodox sermons and full of fore-ordination and eternal punishment of the wicked. This was long ago. He had quite a large family. I will mention some of his children: Joseph, John, Jeremiah, Candice, Abigail and I think there were others who I cannot call to mind. A family by the name of Higgins settled on the hill east of the Christian church. I have forgotten the old gent’s name, but will mention some of the sons: Dyer, Stephen, Abigail, Edmond C., Jerry, others not now called to mind. They all left town in a short time except Stephen and Edmond C. Stephen remained here until his death long since. I will mention his sons: Stephen L. Higgins, Julius, Philo, and two daughters, Mrs. Myron Wheeler, who died here last summer, and Mrs. Sylvester Capron, who died a number of years since. E. C. Higgins kept the old hotel on the corners previous to its being burned in 1854. He went to Wellsville, Allegany Co., and died there long since. One of his daughters, Mrs. Harvey T. Grover, is still living here. I will now mention some that I have missed. John Stack, or Esq. Stack, as he was called, lived in the south gull where the Parshall mills were. After Parshall left, Cornelious Cannon lived a little north of the gull. Ephriam Slade lived on the Brockway farm opposite to Jacob Cannon. Abner Goodrich lived on the south part of Scott W. Snyder’s farm and after the lake road was built, and about 1826, built the Halfway house on the lake shore and kept a tavern for a number of years. Salmon Waterbury lived in the valley, and built a tavern near where E. N. Curtice now lives. He carried on the business of boot and shoe making quite extensively. After a few years he sold to Loren M. Guitau, and built another tannery on the place where Harvey Wilcox lives, and in company with George C. Marvin, did business for a few years: when he sold and went to Steuben county, on Neil’s creek, near Wallace station, where he did an extensive business at tanning, and where he remained until his death, some years since. I will now give a few names without comments on East hill. There was a family of Chesebros-Sylvester, Stephen, Daniel, and Mrs. Ethan Grover, Mrs. Milton Holmes and others not recollected; John B. Miner, William Bussing, Shubel Paine, Terry Parshall, Stephen Harrington, Abram Harrington.
I will now show the way that the poor of the town were supported by giving a copy from the town records. DISPOSAL OF SALLY HYDE. “By a special town meeting called for the purpose of disposing of Sally Hyde, alias Sally Bundy, being a town charge, agreeable to law her maintenance was sold by vandue and bid off by John Wadama for one hundred and forty-nine dollars, January 23d, 1819.”
There was an old man by the name of Bundy here. He was a cobbler, or shoemaker, and used to go about whipping the eat, as it was called, going from house to house with his kit and making and repairing their shoes, and then passing on to the next place where he found work. He had a good opinion of himself. He used to go around and recommend himself by saying that if they would give him good victuals and good wax, he could make as good a shoe as any man. I can’t say as he was any relation to Sally Bundy.
As we were about to describe a visit to Springwater west hill in olden times, I go back so as to take a fair start. Just one hundred and one years ago, in the month of April, in the town of Bennington, Vermont, my father, Stephen Walbridge, was born; and about one hundred and three years ago, in the town of Pownal, at the foot of Pownal mountain, Vermont, my mother, Eunice Matteson, was born; and a little after 1790, both of their parents moved west and settled in the town of Burlington, Otsego county, N. Y. ; and in process of time and about 1805, Stephen and Eunice were married; and on the fifth day of September, 1806, a daughter was born to them, and they called her name Myranda; and on the fourteenth day of September, 1809, a son was born, and they called him Orson; and after seven years and on the thirty-first day of October, 1816, another son was born; and they called him Chauncey; and on the third day of March, 1819, another daughter was born to them, and they called her name Minerva; they all this time living in or about Bennington. In the fall of 1818, my father came west to Springwater, and bought of Ralph Lawrence a place or farm on West hill, then known as the Simeon Shed farm, and lately known as the Edward Totten farm, and intended to move on in the winter; but on account of sickness was unable to do so, and Ira Day came on and occupied the house on said place for the next season and cleared five acres of land for him, there being but four or five acres then cleared on said place. In the month of June, 1819, my father with his family started from Burlington Flats to move to Springwater, and on the last day of June, 1819, arrived at the Valley and stopped for the night at Daniel Day’s, near where Jacob Snyder now lives; and on the first day of July, 1819, we all went up the west hill through the woods, for it was all woods from the corners north of Hugh Wilison’s, so that most of the way the limbs of the trees came together over the road, till we came to where Reuben Smail now lives, at which place there was a log house belonging to the Nelsons, Jesse and Nathaniel of Lima, and a small piece of one or two acres partly cleared. Father’s house being occupied; he hired the house of the Nelsons, where we lived until fall, when he moved on to his own place. The road at that time passed smith of where Smail’s house now is, and across a part of the south Totten farm, and intersected the old road west of Charles McNich’s, and on the said south farm John Emmons lived when we first came there. After two or three years he moved away and lived on the east side of Hemlock Lake, near where the St. James hotel now is, and a man by the name of William Anable took his place on the hill. The next house on the road west was where my father lived for six years, and cleared most of the land that is now cleared on the said farm. Without following my father longer at this time, I go west up the hill and mention the inhabitants by name and location, as I then found them. The first was James Redmond, where the John D. Clemons homestead is. He had a family of seven children, three sons and four daughters. I will give their names: James Seymour, Bartholomew Stoddard, Richmond Cadwell. The daughters were, Samelia, Experiance, Jerusha and Fetney. Samelia married Reuben Strong, and lived where Mrs. Ira Whitlock now live. Experiance married Alvah Hale. James S. was married and raised a family of children. Some of them are still living on the hill. He lived north of the schoolhouse. B. S. was married and raised a family of children. Some of his grandchildren are living at Wayland. He died on Election Day of 1840, at the Whitlock house. Richmond C. married Posey P. Borden, and Ira H. Redmond is one of their sons. The old man and youngest two daughters moved west. All the rest are long since dead. Going north from the old log schoolhouse, where all the children attended school, we come to Eliakem Brown, living on what is now known as the Erwin farm. They had three children who I used to attend school with. Their names were Salinda, Permelia and Orange. After a few years they moved to Nunda, where the old people died and Orange also many years since. I have lately learned that Permelia is now living at Hornellsville, a widow lady. Passing on north near the top of the Tubbs hill, Alfred Lawrence lived on the east side of the road. He was a brother of the late John E. Lawrence. On the west side where Clark Baker now lives, Daniel I. Tubbs lived for a number of years. He married a widow Osburn, mother of the Osburn of Rochester, who built the Osburn block there. Still further north and where E. T. Webster now lives, we find William W. Weed, who was afterward elected sheriff of Livingston County, and went to Geneseo to live. Benjamin Irish also lived near there a few years. An old man by the name of Chapman and another by the name of Janes lived in that neighborhood. I recollect that Janes had a large son, David, as much as twenty years old, that came to school and read with the small children in the spelling book, but he made quite a businessman. The last I knew of him he was the owner and captain of a canal boat on the Erie Canal. Now to go back to the school corners and go west, the first house we come to was John E Lawrence’s. He has been mentioned before. About 1821, John Moot came from New Jersey and bought the Lawrence farm, where he resided the remainder of his days, which was about fifty years. I well remember of seeing him when he was moving in. He had a pair of very large brown horses which he kept for a long time. His wagon, too, was of the large Jersey kind, with a frame body and covered with canvas top and a stiff pole or tug, extending three or four feet in front of the horses, with chains from the end of the pole to horses as hold-backs. The wagon of itself was a good load for a common-sized team. He built a log house on the north side of the road that remained until some four years since, as a monument of olden times. I will now give a brief description of the Moot family. There were George K., now living In Conesus; Mathias and Martin who left here a long time ago. I think they are living; one of them in New York City. John, Jr., remained on the old farm until his death about five years since, after which Samuel Hill bought the farm and removed the old house and built a nice farm residence in the place of it. The next house west of Moot’s was where Fred Hill now lives, and was occupied by Fred Wilson when I first knew it, or Knapsack Wilson, as he was nicknamed. Now to show how he received the name of Knapsack Wilson, and also to show what a person may do after he becomes a slave to his own appetite, I will relate a circumstance that took place with this man. Now Fred Wilson was a soldier of the war of 1812, and after serving through the war and being honorably discharged received what was called a soldier’s right or land warrant for one hundred and sixty acres of public land. Now Wilson, like many others, had formed a habit or liking for strong drink, and instead of locating his land he concluded to sell his warrant, and did sell it, and took his pay all in whisky, delivered at Doud’s still, which has been mentioned before as being near Philo Higgin’s place on East hill, and over six miles from Wilson’s. When he (Wilson) came home from the army he brought his soldier’s knapsack with him, and after he had made the trade above stated, he would put into the old knapsack a wooden bottle or roundelet, so called, which would hold about two gallons, sling it upon his back and start for Doud’s still, get the roundelet filled with whisky, and tramp beck to his home on West hill; where not only he, but his wife would imbibe of the contents of the roundelet until they got most gloriously drunk, and until the bottle was empty, when he would again start for the still as before. He continued to repeat this until the avails of the one hundred and sixty acres of land had been backed home in this manner, and had run down the throats of Wilson and his wife, and what few visitors might have called to help them. I recollect once having stopped at the house, and found Wilson on the floor, and his wife on a straw couch in one corner, and they were both most beastly drunk; and a little babe not old enough to care for itself crawling about its mother. In these days such ii scene would be quite a subject for a temperance lecture, hut in those olden times it was not thought much of. But I will say that a quarter section of land was never more foolishly disposed of or sooner drank up than the one I have just described, and that this should be a warning to all who are forming an appetite by strong drink, to stop before they become a slave to their own appetite, as this man Wilson and his wife were.
Having mentioned some that were here when we first came to West hill, I will now go back and speak of two families that came here the next year after. Josias Matteson, a brother of my mother, came on from Burlington, Otsego County, N.Y., in March, 1820. He moved with a pair of three year old steers and sleigh. He built a small log house on my father’s place and lived there two or three years, when he moved on to the Fred Willson place last mentioned. After living about town for some ten years he removed to the state of Ohio, near Centerville. When he left here he had a family of five children, four sons and one daughter. In the summer of 1820, David Holmes, who I have mentioned before as living in the valley, came up the hill about half way from the foot of the hill to where Reuben Small now lives, and built a log house on the north side of the road, where he lived for about eight years. He was a shoemaker by trade, and made and repaired our boots and shoes for us. He raised a family of ten children, six sons and four daughters. I will name them in order: First, Mariah, Lewis, Harry, Daniel, Green A., David, Jr., Elects, Eliza and Nelson. They moved to Lima about 1830, where the old people died; and I think they are all dead except Elects, who was a short time since living at North Bloomfield. She was a widow lady by the name of Hunt, and mother of the Hunts who are proprietors of the woolen factory of North Bloomfield. Nelson was also living a short time since in the state of Illinois.
I will now return to where we left Fred Willson, and go west to near the town line, where we find a man by the name of Jemison, living on the farm where Chancey Burdick now lives. I well remember of going with my father, soon after coming here, to the raising of a log barn at his place. Jemison was an Irishman. He married a widow lady by the name of Hill, who was mother of the late Mariah Lawrence, and also of one son, William. After a few years Jemison had a brother come to see him, who stopped with him for a time, when they both left town and were not heard of any more. It was supposed that they went back to Ireland.
As there were but few settlers on the town line, or Story road, as it was then called, I will mention some that came there within the next ten years. Commencing at the north line, we find James Bailey and family. He lived there until his death a few years since. Wm. Furman came on the Jemison place, and lived there for a time. Next south was Michael Gillman and family. After a few years, about 1582, he went to Michigan. Archibald Drake lived on the Wm. Brewer farm. Jacob Snyder and family lived next south. His family consisted of himself, his wife and eleven children, four sons and seven daughters. The old gent and some of his family moved to Potter County, Pennsylvania, and Jacob Snyder, Jr., living in the valley, and Mrs. Levi Swarts, living on the hill, are all the ones now left In town.
Continuing south we next come to Selah Stedman who was well-known by all the elder inhabitants of the town, as also were his children. We next come to Lewis Locey on the west side of the road, and then to Dr. Abner Davis on the late Marvin Clemons farm. Davis was a man of considerable note, and had quite an extensive practice. He died there long ago. Daniel Kuhn lived on the corners near the Mt. Pleasant schoolhouse. Still farther south on the Story road lived Daniel Rau, Benjamin Rau, John Roberts, Alonzo Mace and others not now called to mind.
About 1822 or 1823, Henry A. Lake and two of his sons, Robert H. and Benjamin, with their families came in and settled on the hill, the old gent at the four corners south of Mt. Pleasant, where the old Dansville road at that time crossed the Story or town line road. Robert H. Lake located on the J. B. Wilhelm farm and built a saw mill on the stream near where Sylvester Kimbel now lives. Benjamin after a few years came to the valley and lived on A. G. Marvin’s west farm. About 1830, or soon after, Benjamin moved to Ohio, and Robert H. moved to Honeoye Falls, N.Y. The old man I think died here. They all did considerable lumber business when they first came here. We will now come north-east, down the old Dansville road into the hollow where the Markley steam mill used to stand, and where Deacon Jonathan Colburn lived at a very early day in a log house on the east side of the road. He was a man of considerable note in those days. He had a family of children. I will give their names as far as I recollect. Loren, the oldest son, married a daughter of Samuel Story and lived at the place where the old Tyler house now stands, near the sash factory. The other sons, Archibald, Charles and Erastus, are all that I now call to mind. They all went away after a few years, and I cannot give any further account of them. John M. Pixley came on to the farm where they lived, and built a saw mill on the stream running through the farm, which at that time was sufficient to do considerable sawing, but now is nearly dried up. Pixley had children. Two sons I remember, Isaac and Charles. The latter married Roxey, a daughter of Zaddock Grover. He lived in the valley, and was clerk in a store for Thomas Grover. He was also constable and collector of this town for a few years. He finally went to Rochester, where he died, and where his wife is now living. But to return to West hill, coming easterly, the next house we come to was on the corners, where I remember Ebineezer Furman as being one of the early settlers. He, like most of the others at that time, was in the habit of making shingles and lumbering for a living and was consequently barely able to make a living, and a rather poor one at that. I do not recollect much about Furman, so I will give N. R. Hopkins credit for a little story in relation to him. It seems that he, like many others at that time, was in the habit of imbibing too freely of the ardent, and having attended an election where there was plenty to be had, it so happened that he got a rather heavy load, and did not get home till late in the evening, and not until his wife was in bed; and when he did arrive he had got very tired, so that when he opened the door he fell full length upon the floor, which awoke his wife. She called to know who was there, he answered back, “It is me? wife; and I tell you, I have got just as full of whisky as my skin can hold, and it ain’t cost me a cent.”
I will now go south to Carney Hollow and mention one of the early settlers there Peter Bevins. He built and run a saw mill near the south line of the town and lived there until his death at the age of about 90 years. He was twice married and raised a large family. By his first wife he had four daughters, to wit: Polly, Betsey, Helior, Catherine. After the death of his wife he married a widow lady by the name of Miner, who also had four children at the time of their marriage. I will give their names: Rhoda, Caroline, Nancy, and Luther, who is Elder Luther Miner now living on the hill, about one mile north of the old homestead. The result of the last marriage was one son and four daughters, to wit: William, now living in Pennsylvania; Sarah, Julia Ann, now Mrs. Jacob Snyder; Philena A. , now Mrs. I. T. Hollister of Mt. Morris; and Adaline, Mrs. Sergant. Catherine is now living at J. Snyder’s. I will now mention some that came there a little later. There was Adam Zimmerman and others of the same family. William Cummins, Stanton Cummins, Richard Jones, Timothy, James and Daniel Jerome, Joseph and Jesse Carney and their families, . James Wicks, Henry Janes, Markley and Carpenter who built the steam mill; Aaron Washburn and family; Hambleton and family; also old Mr. Humphrey and family. Two of his sons are now living in town, Harvey D. at Webster’s Crossing and Carl M., in this village.
Having mentioned some of the early settlers of the west hill, I will now return to where I left Stephen Walbridge and family, and give a brief history of them. He, Stephen, in 1821, was elected commissioner of highways for the town, which office he held for some seven years. In 1828 he was elected constable, and in 1824 was elected constable and collector, and was re-elected for ten years in succession. He also held the office of assessor for a number of years, after living on the old farm for six years, on the first of April, 1829, he moved to the valley into a house that was on H. H. Wiley’s land where his hop yard now is. Here he lived for four years, and on the first of April, 1829, he moved on East hill, near where Levi Brockway now resides, where he lived one year. He then rented a farm of William Lawrence, where A. G. Marvin now resides, for one year; sad in the spring of 1831, he purchased a farm of 200 acres of Richard Masters, east of Tabor’s Corners, now known as the Jared Barber farm, where he moved the first of May. That summer or fall his wife died and was buried on the Higgins farm cemetery. He continued to live there until September, 1832, when he married the widow of John Chapin, and went to live on what is now Hiram Becker’s farm, and remained there until his death, which was on the 11th day of November, 1864, being in his 79th year, and was buried in the old cemetery near Christopher Ford’s, where we will let him rest until the Lord shall call for him.
I will mention the rest of the family. The oldest daughter, Myranda, married John Wicks, and after a few years moved to the town of Junius, Seneca County, N.Y. They raised a family of five children, but they are all dead. She died in the spring of 1872, after which Wicks went to Michigan and has since died. The oldest son, Orson, lived with his father until the time be moved on the Masters farm, when he left home and went for himself and is now here in the valley, where he has been for over fifty years. I will give a general history of him at another time if the Lord will. Chancey, the second son is now living at Manchester, Michigan. He was living with his father on the fourth day of July, 1885, when he met with an accident by a premature discharge of a cannon when loading, by which he lost his left arm. At the same time N. T. Withington, who is still with us, lost his right arm. A few years after this he married Mary Ann Freeman, and some thirty years since moved to Manchester; and in the spring of 1861, soon after Lincoln took his seat as president, he was appointed postmaster at Manchester, which office he held until about the first of March last, when he was excused to make room for a Democrat as his successor. The youngest daughter, Minerva, married Harrison Brownwell, of ,Junius, N.Y., They had four daughters, after of which Brownwell died and she went to Buffalo to live, where she died on the 24th day of September, 1861, and was buried at Springwater near her father. The four daughters are still living, and are all married and have families. Mrs. Roberts and Mrs. Ackherst are living at Chicago, Mrs. Cooper at Hornellsville, and Mrs. Waldron at Decatur, Ind.
Having given a brief account of some of the white people in town in early times, I will now mention the few colored ones that were here also. First, when Alvah Southworth came here he brought with him a colored boy by the name of Medal Church. He lived with him until after he became of age. He was a respectable citizen, joined the Methodist church and was looked upon as being a man notwithstanding his color. There was a man by the name of Jacob Wright and his wife, (colored), who lived on East hill. They were very clever or kind old people, and were respected by their neighbors.
When S. G. Grover came from Auburn to Springwater he brought with him a colored girl by the name of Jane Nichols, who was known here as black Jane. She was a bright active girl. She lived with them until of age, and after a time removed to Hornellsville, where she died a few years since. Those were all the colored, people in town in early times.