John L. Fray
From The Capital Region of New York State, Crossroads of
Francis P. Kimball
Transcribed by Arlene Goodwin
For many years active in the practice of law in Catskill, John L. Fray is a member of the firm of Osborn, Bloodgood, Wilbur and Fray, of this city, a firm that, through its different forms, has a continuous history dating back over an entire century.
Mr. Fray was born February 18, 1885, in Columbia County, New York, and as an infant was brought to Greene County by his parents, John H. and Catherine R. (Brandow) Fray, where his father was engaged in landscaping work. The mother, who was born in 1856, is still an honored Greene County resident.
Public schools of Catskill provided John L. Fray’s early formal education, and afterward he became a student at Albany Law School of Union University, where he took the degree of Bachelor of Laws in 1906. From law school he came to Catskill, engaging in a general practice of law. He has had a notable advantage in association with such preceptors as Senator Clarence E. Bloodgood and later Frank H. Osborn, who, with others gave him much of his preliminary law training. In 1916 Mr. Fray became a member of the law firm of Osborn, Bloodgood, Wilbur and Fray in which his partners were Frank H. Osborn (q.v.), Albert C. Bloodgood and Howard C. Wilbur. Mr. Osborn, for years one of the members of the firm until his death November 20, 1931, was admitted to the bar in 1880, and on December 1, 1896, became associated with W. Irving Jennings and Chase, in which Emory A. Chase (q.v.) was a partner until his election to the Supreme Court bench in that year. Two years later Mr. Jennings withdrew, and the firm of Osborn and Bloodgood was established on May 1, 1898. Howard C. Wilbur came into the firm January 1, 1905, and it was thereafter known as Osborn, Bloodgood, and Wilbur until Mr. Fray’s admittance.
Mr. Fray’s contribution to the firm has been a significant one, earning for him wide recognition and approval. The firm has as its clients the larger interests of the district, including the banking and larger corporations. Mr. Fray is counsel for the New York State Bridge Authority. He is a member of the Greene County Bar Association, the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association. A member of the bar since March, 1907, he has been a consistent Democrat in his political views, and is a director of both the Catskill Savings Bank and the Tanners’ National Bank. He is a member of Catskill Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons, and is a trustee of the Methodist Church.