History of Otsego County, New York/Edmeston

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DEMING - One of the first settlers after Mr. CARR was Aden DEMING. He was born in 1768 and lived with the Quakers in Pittsfield until twenty years of age, when he purchased his time for twenty dollars. In 1791, he married Martha PHELPS, and after having purchased a farm in this town and made some improvements, sold it for $125, and in 1792 settled with his family in the locality now known as "Graves' Flats." He soon after moved across Wharton creek. He was an industrious, hardy pioneer, and at the time of his death, in June, 1847, he was the owner of 1300 acres of land in Edmeston, and 400 in Pittsfield. His wife died in 1848. Of their family two reside in the county, - Lyman, on the old homestead, and Betsy, wife of Edwin PHELPS, in Edmeston Centre. Nelson lives in New Berlin, Chenango county.

The first physician was Dr. Gains SMITH, who came with his family from Vermont in about the year 1800, and settled on the road leading from Edmeston Centre to West Burlington. He had a large practice, and was highly esteemed in the community. He died in 1819, at the advanced age of seventy- five years. A daughter named Rachel married David BROWN, in Vermont, and moved to this town after her father's death. Another daughter, Diantha, married Benjamin ST. JOHN, in Saratoga county. A son, Hon. David B., St. John, became a resident of this town in 1820, and has done much to advance the interests of Edmeston, as well as the adjoining town of Pittsfield. He at one time resided in Pittsfield, and represented that town in the board of supervisors during ten successive terms, from 1835 to 1845. His record in the board of supervisors, together with his general integrity and character, won him the esteem of the people, and he was subsequently chosen member of assembly in the years 1849-59-60, and was in the constitutional convention in 1846.

SPENCER - Another pioneer physician and prominent citizen was Dr. Halsey SPENCER, who came from Greene county to Otsego in 1814, and located in West Exeter. He remained there two years, and removing to this town, settled on the turnpike between the Centre and West Burlington, where he began the practice of his profession, in which he labored until his death in 1870. He was an esteemed and influential citizen of the county, and served in various capacities. He was supervisor in 1835-37, member of assembly in 1828, and sheriff in 1838. William M. Spencer, M.D., a son, was the first resident physician at the Centre, where he now resides, and is in the active practice of his profession. He has served several years as supervisor. Lewis Spencer, brother of Dr. Spencer, resides at the Centre, and Mrs. Mary HULL, a sister, in West Exeter.

Daniel CHAPIN and wife emigrated from Richmond, Berkshire Co., Mass., in about the year 1800, and settled one and one half miles west of the Centre on lands of the Cooper patent. He died in 1837, aged sixty-three. His eldest son, Walter, remained on a portion of the old homestead until 1870, when he removed to Unadilla Forks, where he now resides. John, the second son, occupies the homestead. His mother is living with him at the age of ninety-eight years. Alfonso is a resident of Sherburne, Chenango county. Uriah Chapin was an early settler in Burlington. David Chapin settled near Edmeston Centre, where he conducted a tannery. A son, Laurentine, lives on the homestead.

Nathan LANGWORTHY, wife, and family emigrated from Rhode Island about the year 1805 and settled in Brookfield, Madison county, about half a mile below West Edmeston village, where he died. Two of his children subsequently moved across the river into this county. William F. Langworthy, a son, settled on a farm in sight of his father's place. He married Desire A. BASS in 1832. Numerous representatives of this honored family are residents of the town. Hollum Langworthy, who now occupies his father's homestead, is an enterprising citizen and a successful apiarian.

The HOXIE family were of English origin. The first of the family who came to this country located in Massachusetts. Stephen Hoxie, the great-grandfather of the present family residing in Edmeston, emigrated from Connecticut, and was among the first settlers in the Unadilla valley, at Leonardsville, upon premises now owned by his direct descendants. He was an honored pioneer, and lived to the advanced age of one hundred and one years. Nathan B Hoxie, his grandson, and son of Solomon Hoxie, Sr., was born in 1801. In 1826 he married Eliza LANGWORTHY, and in 1832 moved in this town, locating upon the Edmeston patent, which at that time, was a dense uninviting wilderness. The farm upon which he settled is now owned by his younger son, Samuel L. Hoxie. Nathan B. Hoxie had but two children, who grew to years of manhood, - Solomon, now residing in Whitesboro, Oneida county, and Samuel L., who resides upon a farm adjoining the old homestead. The former married Lucy P. STICKNEY, of Edmeston, and has three children, - C. DeForest, Jennie L. and Franklin. Mr. Hoxie has been an active citizen of the town, and was supervisor four years during the War of the Rebellion. Samuel L. married Rosetta E. POPE, and their family consists of two children, - Arthur S. and E. Ellsworth. Agnes, a daughter, died at the age of three years. Mr. Hoxie is one of the substantial citizens of the town, and is ranked among the progressive agriculturists and stock-breeders of the country. He occupies over 400 acres of land lying along the Unadilla river, and is largely engaged in dairying, although he gives much attention to breeding of improved stock. His horses are of the Hambletonian and Golddust breeds. He is a leading member of the Unadilla Stock-Breeders' association, and was instrumental in its organization.

The TAYLORs were pioneers in the vicinity of "Taylor Hill," among whom are mentioned Benjamin B., William, Timothy, Thomas, etc. They were instrumental in organizing the first Baptist church of Edmeston. B. F. Taylor, the celebrated poet and writer, is a relative.

Church Histories[edit]

The FIRST BAPTIST church of Edmeston, located on what is known as Taylor Hill, was organized March 8, 1794, by Rev. Stephen TAYLOR, who came from Rhode Island and settled in the town in 1790. He donated the land on which to erect the church, and assisted in the construction of the edifice. He died in 1841, aged seventy-one years. Among those who joined at date of organization were Jonathan PETTIT, Timothy TAYLOR, Jacob TALBOT, Thomas TERRY, Thos. TAYLOR, Daniel GREEN, Nehemiah BILLINGS, Robert FULLER, Stephen COLEGROVE, William SCRANTON, Hugh SMITH, Jos. CASE, Lydia TAYLOR, Dorcas SCRANTON, Seviah BILLINGS, Agnes PETTIT, Hannah GREEN, Sarah TERRY, Freelove TAYLOR, Rosannah TAYLOR, and Marcy PHINNEY. The church building was erected in 1822.

The UNIVERSALIST church of Edmeston was organized at Edmeston Centre, Nov. 25, 1843, with thirty-nine members. Rev. A. COOK was the first officiating pastor. The church building was erected in the year following the organization, at a cost of about $2500, Only occasional services are now held.

The FREE METHODIST church of Edmeston was organized April 17, 1871, by William SOUTHWORTH. The following were the first trustees: Artemus WELCH, Wilber F. WALLING, Ezra WHEELER, Daniel COLEGROVE, Stephen WINSOR, Warren COLEGROVE, and Darling STEPHENS. The name of the first minister was William SOUTHWORTH. The names of the first members were Daniel COLEGROVE, D. COLEGROVE, Wilber WALLING, Lorenda WALLING, Esther PRESTON, Mary YORK, Phoebe HOPKINS, Paulina MITCHELL, Ezra WHEELER, Darling STEPHENS, Rhoda STEPHENS, David WALLING, Esther BABCOCK, Stephen WINSOR, Henrietta WINSOR, Warren COLEGROVE, Mary COLEGROVE, S. S. WEBER. The first church building was erected in 1871, at a cost of $1000. The present trustees are Daniel COLEGROVE, Albert DENISON, Warren COLEGROVE.

The present minister is S. W. CRONK. The name and time employed of each minister was - David DEMPSEY, one year; Daniel COLEGROVE, one year; S. B .McVAY, one year; Daniel COLEGROVE, one year; S. W. PERKINS, one year; J. B. STACY, one year; S. W. CRONK, one year. Number of present members, sixteen.

The SECOND BAPTIST church. This church was organized in Edmeston Centre, May 30, and recognized by council, June 11, 1846. It first officers were L. B. GREGORY, deacon, and Stanton TEFFT, clerk. Rev. Justus H. Wells was the first pastor. Its constituent members were Silas COATS, Stanton TEFFT, Perry POPE, L. B. GREGORY, D. O. CHURCH, Nelson GREENE, Stephen CARD, Harvey PASCO, with sisters COATS, TEFFT, POPE, GREGORY, CARD, Caleb PERKINS and Sarah his wife, Sally BROWN, Emeline POTTER, Hannah SPAFFORD, Freelove KENNEDY. and two or three others, making twenty-one or twenty-two in all.

The first and only meeting-house was erected of wood in 1853. It cost about $2500, and is 34 by 48 feet in size, and has a tower and a fine-toned bell. Previous to this time religious services were held in school-houses and in the Universalist house. The house was begun in May, 1853, and was dedicated to the worship of Almighty God in November, 1853. Its present deacons are S. A. COATS, J. T. RICHARDS, and C. W. HOPKINS; Eli CHAMBERLAIN is church clerk. The Rev. Lawson MUZZY was chosen pastor in April, 1874, and still continues to fill that office. Rev. J. H. WELLS served the church as pastor nearly five years; Rev. Hewett FITCH, nine years; Rev. J. C. FOSTER, two years; Rev. S. N. WESTCOTT, four years; Rev. G. H. HOGEBOOM, two years; Rev. G. E. FLINT, three years; Rev. J. H CHAMBERLAIN, one year. The present membership is one hundred and thirty.

This church has been blessed with an unusual degree of peace and harmony, and has for the most of the time enjoyed a good degree of prosperity Three of its number have been called of God, as we believe, to preach the gospel to the perishing. The Rev. J. D. POPE is worthily serving the Master in St. John's, Nova Scotia; his brother, Rev. D. B. POPE, is a faithful pastor in this State, and the third brother, John GREENE, is pursuing his preparatory studies in the theological seminary at Hamilton. The meeting-house was built during the pastorate of Rev. H. FITCH, who served the church acceptably and faithfully. The most remarkable and extended revival known in the congregation, or in this town, was enjoyed in the winter and spring of 1875, under the labors of their present pastor, Rev. L. MUZZY. Meetings were continued daily for three months, and were characterized by unusual solemnity, and striking exhibitions of divine power and grace. Over one hundred were hopefully converted. Some fifty were added to the church during that year. Their Sunday-school is at present as well organized and as prosperous as any school in the county.

The SEVENTH-DAY BAPTIST church at West Edmeston, N.Y.* * By Rev. J. Bennett CLARKE This church is the only one of the kind in Otsego County. There are three in Madison, two in Chenango, and others in Oneida, Cortland, and several more counties of the State. They differ from the regular Baptists only in respect to keeping the seventh day of the week as the Sabbath. They believe that there has been no change of the day by divine authority, as the Scriptures contain no proof of any, and accepting the Ten Commandments as God's moral and immutable law, they observe the day which he has blessed, sanctified, and commanded as the Sabbath to be kept holy by all mankind. In this view they feel confirmed because those passages in the New Testament which refer to the first day of the week do not seem to them to imply either the substitution of that day for the seventh as the Sabbath, or its appointment at all as a day for religious worship. their practice, therefore, does not arise from any capricious or bigoted spirit, but from the conviction that it is their duty to strictly regard what God has definitely enjoined, until he definitely abrogates his law, or absolves them plainly from its requirements.

The church at West Edmeston was organized Sept. 28, 1823. It first took the name of the THIRD CHURCH OF BROOKFIELD. the meeting-house, which was built some time before, was located about half a mile north of Babcock's mills, in the Beaver Creek valley. The first members were connected with churches at Leonardsville and Clarkville, in the same town. Believing that their convenience, as well as the interests of the cause of God required the formation of the new church, a council was called consisting of Elders William B. MAXSON and Henry CLARKE, Deacons William UTTER and Ethan CLARKE, of the First Church of Brookfield, and Elder Eli S. BAILEY, Deacons Saunders LANGWORTHY and Silas SPENCER, of the Second Church. Elder Matthew STILLMAN, from Rhode Island, being present, was invited to a seat in the council. Eli S. BAILEY was made moderator, and Silas SPENCER clerk. After hearing the reasons, and the Articles of Faith and the Covenant, the council approved the movement, and proceeded with the organization, Elder Henry CLARK giving the hand of fellowship for the council, and Elder Daniel COON receiving the same on behalf of the new church. The first officers were as follows: Daniel COON, pastor; Samuel P. BURDICK and Joshua MAXSON, deacons; Adin BURDICK, clerk.

Eighty names were enrolled at the organization, as shown by the following list of members: Daniel COON, Joshua MAXSON, Samuel P. BURDICK, Elias BURDICK, Lydia BURDICK (widow of Elisha), Adin BURDICK, Benjamin BURDICK, Desire BURDICK (daughter of Elisha), Thankful MAXSON (wife of Joshua), David MAXSON, Lydia CHAMPLIN (wife of George C.), Martha BURDICK (wife of Rowse B.), Sarah BURDICK (wife of Robert), Prudence STILLMAN (wife of Benjamin), Nathan STILLMAN, Isaac W. BROWN, Ethan P. CRANDALL, James CRANDALL, Augustus CRANDALL, Joel MAXSON, Nathan BURCH, Peleg BABCOCK, Samuel B. CRANDALL, John MAXSON, Ephraim MAXSON, Darius CHAPIN, Henry M. CRANDALL, Franklin COON, Sanders CRANDALL, Rowland COON, Joseph S. CRANDALL, Thankful CRANDALL (wife of James), Rachel MAXSON (wife of Joel), Polly CRANDALL (wife of Sanders), Betsy CRUMB (wife of Silias), Fanny STILLMAN (wife of Nathan), Sarah BURDICK (wife of Charles), Olive CRANDALL (wife of James S.), Hannah BURDICK (wife of David), Nancy CLARKE (daughter of Luke), Prudence CLARKE (daughter of Luke), Phebe BABCOCK (daughter of Jonathan), Clarissa MAXSON (wife of Ephraim), Thankful CRANDALL (wife of Aldrich), Polly BURDICK (wife of Samuel P.), Lavina MAXSON (daughter of Joel), Damaris BURCH (wife of Nathan), Nancy BABCOCK (daughter of Jonathan), Fanny COON (wife of Daniel), Lucy GRISWOLD, Sally COON, (wife of Rowland), Benjamin EDWARDS, Mary EDWARDS (wife of Benjamin), Abram COON, Amy COON (wife of Abram), Anna COON (daughter of Abram), Elizabeth BROWN (wife of J. W.), Philecta CRANDALL (wife of Ethan), Almira MAXSON (wife of John), Daniel BROWN, Charles POTTER, Samuel H. COON, Olive COON (wife of Samuel H.), Joshua MAXSON, Jr., Ezra COON, Mary BURDICK (daughter of Samuel P.), Eliza POTTER (wife of Charles), Fanny WILBER, Kinyon CRANDALL, Mary CRANDALL (wife of Kinyon), Caleb CHURCH, Esther CHURCH, Ethan STILLMAN, Weeden WITTER, Betsy NYE (wife of B. B. NYE), Mary CRANDALL (daughter of James), Luke CLARK, Cyrene COON (wife of Ezra), Patty BABCOCK (wife of Chas. B., Jr.), Ephraim CLARK.

After fifteen years it was found that a majority of the members had become located in and near West Edmeston, and for their accommodation they built a meeting-house in 1843, which cost $800. Subsequently it was enlarged so as to seat two hundred an fifty persons. Its present value is $1200. For ten years after its erection the meetings were held alternately between the two chapels. They were all removed to West Edmeston in 1854, and soon after the name of the church was changed. Up to this date the terms of ministerial service only in part can be accurately ascertained. Daniel COON, the first pastor, was employed several years. Samuel B. CRANDALL, his successor, also served for several years. He was followed by Varnum HULL, who preached for them only one year, during g1841. Eli S. DAILEY, a resident minister and physician of Brookfield, preached during the time to 1844, when Giles M. LANGWORTHY served one year. Samuel B. CRANDALL was re-employed, and continued his labors until 1850, the year of his death, which took place at South Brookfield. Eli S. BAILEY was again secured, and labored five years, to 1855. He was succeeded b Libbeus M. COTTRELL for three years, to 1858. Eli S. BAILEY again served two years, to 1860. John P. HUNTING from April 1, 1860 to 1863. Alexander CAMPBELL three years, to 1866, from which time the present pastor has had the care of the church.

The following are the present officers: J. Bennett CLARKE, pastor; Ransom T. STILLMAN, Ethan STILLMAN, and William H. BURDICK, deacons; Amos S. STILLMAN, clerk. The present membership is one hundred and eleven.

It will be seen that this sketch covers a little more than half a century. Revival seasons from time to time have been enjoyed, and in the list of members for that period nearly five hundred different names have been enrolled.