Biographical and Genealogical History of Morris County New Jersey. Illustrated. Vol. II., Lewis Publishing Company, New York and Chicago, 1899.
For more than a century and a half the FAIRCHILD family has been preeminently connected with the material, moral, military, and political interests of Morris county, and the development and progress of this locality is due in no small measure to those who have born the name. Aaron K. FAIRCHILD is a worthy and esteemed representative of this family and was born in Whippany on the 8th of April, 1832. His father, Edmund R. FAIRCHILD, was born in the same town, in March, 1807, being a son of John FAIRCHILD, whose birth occurred in 1781.
The last named was the son of Abraham, who opened his eyes to the light of day, in Whippany, in 1751. His father, was Abner, his grandfather Caleb FAIRCHILD, and the latter took up his residence in Whippany among its first settlers, in 1737, establishing there a grist and saw mill, the first in the place. He continued in the milling business until his death, and made home on a small farm which he located near the town, In public affairs he was prominent, and at one time he served as sheriff of Morris county.
His son, Abner FAIRCHILD, was reared in Whippany, and served as a captain in the Continental army, while seven of his sons were patriots in the war for independence of the nation. Of this number Abraham FAIRCHILD also became a captain. On the site where his grandfather conducted a sawmill he established a woolen mill and conducted a successful business. He served as justice of the peace for many years and did much to formulate public opinion and mould the general sentiment of the community. He reared a large family.
John FAIRCHILD, the grandfather of our subject, was reared in Whippany and after attaining to man's estate followed the business established by his father, enjoying a very extensive and profitable trade. He married Lucy KITCHELL, a daughter of Hon. Aaron KITCHELL. They had a family of six children. John FAIRCHILD was likewise a defender of his country, serving in the war of 1812. He died at the advanced age of eighty-one years.
Edmund FAIRCHILD, father of our subject, received a common school education and like the others of the family, engaged in the manufacture of woolen goods. He was married in 1828 to Miss Nancy BEACH, a native of Beach Glen and a daughter of Steven and Catherine
(CONGER) BEACH. Her father was a descendent of one of the old families of New Jersey. Mr. and Mrs. FAIRCHILD became the parents of the following named children: Ezra, who is living in East Orange; Aaron K.; Hon. Peter B., of Orange; Henry; Whippany; Sarah, wife of Thomas ALLEN, of Rockland county, New York; Fanny, deceased wife of W.
H. KITCHELL, of Whippany; James, of Orange, and two who died in infancy. The parents are both members of the Presbyterian church in Whippany and were people of the highest respectability. In early life Mr. FAIRCHILD gave his political support to the Whig party, but on its dissolution became a Republican and took quite an active and leading part in public affairs. He died in 1887, and his wife passed away about four years later.
Aaron K. FAIRCHILD was educated in the common schools, and when a practical acquaintance with the branches of English learning fitted him for the duties of business life he began the manufacture of woolen goods, in which business his ancestors had found a competence, succeeding his father in this industry. His management of the enterprise, his keen discrimination in choosing a course to follow, his sagacity and his straightforward business methods combined to bring him success in this enterprise, and he continued the mill with profit until 1894, when he disposed of the property which had been in possession of the family for one hundred and twenty years. It has since been transformed into a paper-mill. Mr. FAIRCHILD is now engaged in the pleasant occupation of floriculture, but makes a specialty of cultivating violets for the New York market.
In 1880 was solemnized the marriage of Mr. FAIRCHILD and Miss Fanny KITCHELL, a daughter of William H. KITCHELL. They are leading members of the Presbyterian church of Whippany, in which he is serving as elder, a position that was filled by his father and grandfather before him. In politics he is a Republican and has filled most of the township offices. The elements of his character, the acts of his life, his purposes and his motives have awakened the respect of those who have come in contact with him, and those who know him most intimately and are most familiar with the real man numbered among his best friends.
Transcribed by Christopher Cresta