Article Number 25 - The Loveridge Patent No. 6 - Huybartus and Salomon Dubois
Originally published in the Catskill Examiner by Henry Brace between the years 1876 and 1879. Article 25 was published on June 15, 1878. Extracted from the microfilm copies of the Catskill Examiner located at the Vedder Research Library. Transcribed by Barbara Bartley.
“The Examiner”, dated June 15, 1878
LOCAL SKETCHES. No. 25. History of the Town
of Catskill To the Year 1783 By Henry Brace
(3.) Huybartus Dubois was baptized by Domine Petrus Vas, at Kingston, on the 10th day of October, 1725, was married about the year 1748 to Cornelia, who was probably the daughter of Caspar Janse Hallenbeck, of the Vlagte of Loonenburg, and died in the winter of 1808 and 1809. He was buried by the side of his wife in the graveyard of the family in the meadow west of his house.
Huybartus, with his brother Cornelius, was brought to Catskill while he was still a child, and was brought up as a farmer. He probably built the stone cottage at The Point, near Uylenkil, which was afterwards occupied by Isaac Dubois. At any rate, Huybartus, after his marriage and until about the year 1760, lived in that house, and in it his children were all born.
In 1767, he became, by devise from his father Benjamin, the owner of a large estate. The boundaries of this estate are not clearly defined in the will by which it is created. The south-west corner was the “north-west corner of Paulus Smith’s” farm. The north-west corner was upon the Katerskil, about a hundred rods above the house which was afterwards built for Catharine, the daughter of Huybartus Dubois, and the mother of John and Lena Hermance. From this corner, the estate was bounded by the Katerskil and the Catskill, and extended to the lands of Cornelius Dubois at a black oak tree which stood, as I have already said, upon the water’s edge near the garden or orchard of Caleb Benton. Besides this farm, Huybartus Dubois owned, in common with his brothers and nephew, the woodland upon and beyond the Kalkberg. The house in which Huybartus lived for nearly fifty years, and in which he died, was built about 1740. It is still standing, and is now occupied by his great-grandson, Benjamin P. Dubois, the only person of the family, in the male line, who has possession of any portion of the ancestral estate. The barn, which is behind this cottage, is at least a hundred and twenty-five years old, and it may be much older, for the tradition is that it, or a portion of it, was used by William Loveridge.
Huybartus Dubois, says the Rev. Dr. Dubois, in his Genealogical Chart, ‘was always spoken of with respect by our grandparents.’ On the other hand, he has been described to me as a litigious, bad-tempered and intemperate man. That he was stern and unforgiving is apparent from his treatment of his daughter Lena. She had married against his wish and had been discarded by him. At one time he lay very sick, and she, bringing her first-born babe in her arms, came to his bedside to ask for forgiveness. The old man spoke not and turned his face to the wall.
The children of Huybartus Dubois were, 1. Benjamin; 2. John; 3. Tryntje or Catharine,*[*”Quite a remarkable train of circumstances,” says Dr. Dubois, in his Genealogical Chart, “are connected with the life of this Treintje or Catharine. She was born at “The Point,” where her father then lived, in the name of DuBois. Her first husband died leaving her with four children. By her second husband, Phillips, she had no children. Her third marriage was with her cousin John DuBois, when she was sixty-three, and this was his fourth marriage, he being fifty-six years old. This marriage brought her to the place and name of her nativity. She lived happily with John DuBois twenty-three years, and her own children and grand-children found welcome and shelter at “The Point”, quite as pleasant as those of her husband. She was seven years the senior of her husband, John DuBois, and died before him, though at a greater age, viz., eighty-six. She was a favorite of her father, Huybartus, if we may judge by the large landed estate left her by his will. She was a woman, as we remember her in her old age, of quiet habits, but of energy, decision and warm heart.”] who married successively Gosie Hermance, Michael Phillips, and her cousin, John Dubois of The Point; 4. Rachel, who married Abraham Hoffman, of Kingston; 5. Lena, who married Abraham Elmendorf, and 6. Lidia, who married John Sole. Both Benjamin and John died before their father, who devised his lands to his daughter Catharine, to his daughter-in-law Catharine, the wife of Peter, for life, with remainder to the children of Peter.
The act which incorporated the village of Catskill was passed on the 14th day of March, 1806. By this act the western boundary of the village was established by a line which began “at the north-west corner of the lands of Huybartus Dubois,” and which ran from this corner “along the west bounds of his land to the farm of Frederick Smith.” Mr. John Van Vechten, in his map of the village, which hangs in the office of the County Clerk, leaves this western boundary undesignated, nor have I met with any man who knew where it was. This line could not have begun at the north-west corner of the lands of Huybartus Dubois, as he received these lands from his father, because this corner was upon the Katerskil, above the house of Lena Hermance. But the will of Huybartus may, perhaps, afford a solution of the difficulty. By this instrument, which was executed on the 18th of March, 1806, he devised to his daughter Catharine, or Trintje, the farm upon which he was then living, and which is described as “beginning at a white pine tree standing on the south side of Catskill, upon a course south forty-four degrees and thirty minutes east from the north-east corner of Samuel Van Vechten’s grist mill,” and as running thence, by various courses, in a south-westerly direction a distance of fifty-five chains and nineteen links, to the land of Cornelius Dubois. I am inclined to the opinion that the north-west corner of the village of Catskill is the place where this tree once stood, and that the western boundary of the village is upon the line which formed the eastern boundary of the lands of Trintje Dubois Hermance.
(4.) Salomon Dubois was baptized by Domine Petrus Vas, at Kingston, on the 23rd of February, 1724, was married to Margaret Sammons on the 27th day of September, 1749, and died before July 1760. He was buried, it is said, upon the hill behind his house. But the position of the grave has long since been lost.
This house is still standing upon the right or south bank of the Katerskil, about a quarter of a mile above the great falls of that river. Since it was built, it seems to have received additions at each end. Over a central door-way, which is now blocked up, are rudely cut the date of erection--1751, May 3--and the initials of the builders, Benjamin, Salomon and Cornelius Dubois.†[†The initials B. D. B. are combined into a monogram by placing one B within the D and by placing around these the other D. With regard to the other initials, the letters D B are in the form of monograms. A photograph of the house may be found in the book called the Dubois Reunion.] I suppose that the house was built by Benjamin, as the dwelling-place of his son Salomon, after the marriage of the latter with Margaret Sammons. It is a rude structure, but its age and associations make it somewhat venerable. The road in front lies upon the trail by which the Indians of the villages upon the Catskill made their way up the Katerskil to the head-waters of the Schohariekil.
Salomon Dubois was a blacksmith as well as a farmer. Thirty years ago the site of his smith, a few feet west of his house, was marked by blackened earth and cinders. A wafel-ijzer, or waffle-iron, made by him and bearing the date of 1754, is in the possession of his descendants of the Eckler family. But a blacksmith of the last century had an occupation of greater variety than a blacksmith of the present day. Such a one not only forged horseshoes, but a hundred other implements, for the yeomen of the neighborhood, ploughs, spades, buckles, hinges, locks and bolts, and, for the housewives, tongs and shovels, pot-hooks, fire-dogs and a few cooking utensils. When other work was wanting, he and his apprentices slowly hammered out the clumsy wrought-iron nails which may still be found in old dwellings; such, for example, as a few months ago I saw fastening rudely split laths to the walls of the house of the Abeels, at the Bak-Oven.
Salomon Dubois left four children, 1. Benjamin; 2. Catalyntje, who married Edward Witteker; 3. Sara, who married Barent Staats Salisbury; and, 4. Rachel, who died a spinster, at the age of ninety-nine years. Benjamin was baptized at Kaatsbaan, on the 26th of December, 1752, by Domine Manceius, of Kingston, was married to Catharine Salisbury, and died after the year 1801. He, by the will of his grandfather Benjamin, became the owner of the lands lying on the Katerskil above and below the great falls, and lived all his life in the house which was built for his father, Salomon, and which I have just described.