From the Biographical Review, Volume XXXIII, located at the Durham
Transcribed by Celeste MacCormack.
GEORGE HANER, M.D., an able physician and prominent citizen of
Tannersville, Greene County, N.Y., was born in Prattsville, Greene County, on
the 6th of August 1847. His sole heritage was that of unsullied name and a
constitution which had been developed through generation of industrious sons of
the soil. For three generations the Haners and their wives have been
hard-working, persevering, and in some degree successful citizens of Greene
Martinus Haner, the Doctor’s great-grandfather, was one of the pioneers who
came to Prattsville from the more settled regions of Columbia County. He
immediately engage in peeling bark for the tanneries, which at that time formed
the chief industry of the neighborhood. This pursuit he followed as long as his
health permitted him to work. His son Martin continued the gathering and sale of
bark, but besides this he cleared a large farm and won by his diligent
application a degree of prosperity and comfort.
Martin Haner married Miss Shoemaker, a native of Columbia County, by whom he had
seven children, namely: Isaac; Henry; William M., the Doctor’s father; Patty
M.; Elizabeth; Lavinia; and Mima Ann. Patty M. married Samuel Chamberlain, who
is no longer living; Lavinia became Mrs. Spencer; Mima Ann was married to Henry
Palmer; and Elizabeth became the wife of Edward Cronk. Martin Haner brought up
his children in such a way as to fit them for the battle of life; and, if he did
not leave them a fortune, he at least taught them to win their own way to
respect and independence. His wife died at the age of fifty, but for a few years
more he remained with his family, closing an honorable life, with the love and
respect of all who knew him, at the age of sixty-six.
William M. Haner, like his brothers and sisters, obtained his education in the
common schools of the town. In the course of time he took possession of part of
the old homestead property, which he farmed with some success until 1866, when
he removed to Jewett. There he purchased a farm, but he only occupied it one
year; and then selling it he removed to the town of Roxbury, near Grand Gorge,
Delaware County. Here he purchased a large dairy farm, which he continued to
occupy until 1895. He is now (July, 1899) seventy-six years of age, and is
living with his children at Tannersville. He is a Democrat in politics, and has
held office as Road Commissioner and Overseer of the Poor.
His wife, Cornelia, was the daughter of Jacob and Jennie (Stanley) Maginnes, who
also were among the first settlers in Prattsville. She became the mother of
eight children, four of whom are still living, namely: George, the subject of
this sketch; Jennie E.; Homer H.; and Clark R. Jennie E. is the wife of Charles
Voss, the genial Postmaster of Tannersville, a sketch of whom will be found
elsewhere in the REVIEW. Homer has been for twenty years general agent for Davis
Sewing Machine Company, and for upward of three he represented their interest in
Australia. Clark is a book-keeper and clerk, and resides at Tannersville. Mrs.
Cornelia M. Haner died on May 15, 1899, at the age of seventy-three. She was for
many years a useful and honored member of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Thus it will be seen that George Haner started in life with no great advantages,
but such as he had he turned to the very best account. All that the common
schools of Prattsville had to give he devoured with avidity, and speedily made
his way at eighteen years of age from the pupils’ bench to the teacher’s
desk. Quiet and reserved though he was, his efficient work soon called the
attention of trustees and school commissioners, and he successively and
successfully taught in the schools of Red Falls, Jewett Centre, Windham, and
Prattsville in Greene County, and Gilboa, Gallupville, and Middleburg in the
neighboring county of Schoharie. With the power to teach came the love of and
craving for more knowledge and he very soon proceeded to Fort Edward Institute,
where he took an advanced course of study. A period was, however, put to his
attendance at this school through lack of funds, but, nothing daunted, he turned
to manual labor to supply his needs in this direction. He obtained work as a
carpenter, and it was while thus engaged that a direction was given to his mind
which determined his choice of a lifework. He was assisting to build a house for
Dr. D. M. Leonard at Broome Centre, Schoharie County, and in discussing his
future with that gentleman he was advised by him to adopt the profession of
medicine. Taking the advice, he at once began his studies with Dr. Leonard, with
whom he remained until he entered the Medical College of the New York
University, from which he was graduated in the class of 1877. Thus equipped, Dr.
Haner took up his residence in the town of Conesville, where he practised with
success until 1880, when he came to Tannersville.
In 1880 Tannersville was only a small village, and the arrival of a young doctor
with a university diploma and some experience was indeed an acquisition. He very
speedily impressed the inhabitants with his professional knowledge and ability,
and as the years have rolled along his practice has increased and his reputation
as a skilful physician has continued to grow. For ten years he practised without
opposition. Besides his ordinary practice he has a large clintele among the many
city boarders who visit Tannersville during the summer months, and among whom he
is deservedly popular, both from a professional and social point of view. His
present residence was erected in 1881, but it has been recently enlarged and
beautified and made complete by a most convenient suite of offices.
In politics the Doctor is a Democrat. He has twice represented his town as
Supervisor, and during the latter term was chairman of the board. The esteem of
his fellow-citizens has also been manifested in his election to the office of
Coroner for three terms of three years each.
His public spirit has led him to take an active interest in all that concerned
the prosperity and development of the village in which he resides. He was one of
the incorporators and its first president . He took measures for the laying out
of its sidewalks, and was a member of the building committee which erected the
first public school-building.
In 1877 Dr. Haner was untied in marriage to Miss Agnes More, of Roxbury,
Delaware County, a daughter of Andrew and Anne E. (Hardenburgh) More and a third
cousin of the late Jay Gould. She had two sisters, Cornelia and Kate, and she
has one brother, Samuel P. Kate was married to Mr. M. L. Benham. Samuel P. More
is a publisher in Great Bend, Pa. Dr. and Mrs. Haner have one daughter, Helen.
The Doctor is a charter member of the Mount Tabor Lodge, F.& A. M., and
belonged formerly to the Gilboa Lodge. He is a member of the County Medical
Society, of which he has been secretary for three years, and also of the New
York Physicians’ Mutual Aid Association.
Dr. Haner is also a prominent and enthusiastic member of the Methodist Episcopal
Church, and actively and generously participated in the movement which resulted
in the erection of the present beautiful edifice in Tannersville belonging to
that body. He worked indefatigably in the erection of the Methodist Episcopal
parsonage, and to these objects combined has contributed upward of five hundred
His interest in Sunday school work dates back to his Conesville days, when he
was superintendent of the school; and ever since he came to Tannersville he has
been ready with hand and brain , sympathy and purse, to advance the work of God
in the church of his choice. He has held almost every office that a layman can
hold, representing his brethren at both the district and annual conferences, and
is at the present time a trustee.
Dr. Haner is yet in the prime of life, and if spared will be of inestimable
service to the community amid which he resides.
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