From the Biographical Review, Volume XXXIII, located at the Durham Center Museum.
Transcribed by Arlene Goodwin
MICHAEL LACKEY, Jr., real estate and insurance man of Greene County, is a resident of Tannersville, where his was born on November 24, 1860, son of Michael and Catherine (Burke) Lackey. His parents are still living, and make their home with him.
His paternal grandfather, Thomas Lackey, who was born in Ireland, went to England in 1821, and resided there until 1829, when he emigrated to America, and, settling in New York City, followed the trade of a cabinet-maker. In 1835 Thomas Lackey retired from active business pursuits and came to Tannersville, where he resides with his son, the elder Michael, until his death, which occurred in 1853.
Michael Lackey, Sr., father of the subject of this sketch, was born in Ireland, May 18, 1815. He came to America with his parents when fourteen years old, and was educated in the night schools of New York City. He learned a trade of a house painter, which he followed there for a time and then removed to Tannersville, where he continued in the same occupation. He also kept a country tavern in the old stage times when Tannersville was a hamlet called Greenland. He is a Democrat in politics, and has held offices. His wife, whose maiden name was Catherine Burke, is a native of Ireland. They had four children, two of whom are now living; namely, Michael Jr., and his sister Lizzie P. The latter is the wife of Michael B. Dolan.
Michael Lackey, Jr., acquired his education in the common schools of Tannersville. At the age of fifteen he went to New York City, and entered Ehrich’s dry-goods store on Eighth Avenue, where he kept the country order books for one year. He then engaged in the ice cream and confectionery business at the corner of Eighth Avenue and Fifty-ninth Street. Returning to Tannersville later, he taught school until 1883, at the same time studying law and becoming a practitioner. In 1875 he purchased a farm of one hundred acres in Hunter known as Onteora Glen, which he conducted with his other business until 1892. From May 10, 1891, to October 20 of that year, he was proprietor of a laundry, having an exclusive contract for Onteora Park, including thirty cottages and a large inn; and he was ably assisted in this work by his wife. He moved from his farm in 1892, renting it until 1896 when he exchanged that property for the half-way house on the road to Hunter, and removed to the village of Tannersville. Soon after his return he erected a dwelling-house, office and store, the latter of which is well stocked with stationery, school supplies, sporting goods, and other merchandise, and is carried on by his wife. He does quite a business in the buying of Christmas-trees for the New York market, shipping from six to ten carloads annually. In 1893 he engaged in the real estate business. He erected a large building which he rents. He makes collections for many concerns through the county, and was appointed assignee for Willsey & Fromer, one of the largest firms in this vicinity. As local representative of several large insurance companies, he has secured some of the principal risks in the town. He has a great deal of law practice in the minor courts.
In 1883 Mr. Lackey was united in marriage with Julia Weller, daughter of Thomas Weller, formerly an inn-deeper in Birmingham, England. They have five children—Robert E., Charles H., Edward W., Mary L, and Clara E.
Politically, Mr. Lackey is a Democrat. In 1889 he was appointed Deputy Sheriff, holding that office three years; and he was candidate for Supervisor in 1891. He was appointed Postmaster in 1893, and held that position until 1898, giving general satisfaction. He has been Counsel for the village corporation ever since its organization, has acted as notary public for the past fourteen years, and is frequently called upon to address political meetings. He is a member of the Knights of Pythias, and Past Chancellor of the local lodge.