Biography courteously provided by Joyce Riedinger, Delaware County Coordinator.
CALEB BRUNDEGE, an intelligent, practical farmer, proprietor of one hundred and eighty well-tilled acres in the town of Tompkins, N.Y., was born May 10, 1842, in the adjoining town of Masonville, son of James D. Brundege, who was a native of Saratoga, N.Y. The first Brundege in this country came from Holland and settled on Long Island before the Revolutionary War. He raised a family of thirteen sons. One of his descendants, Daniel Brundege, the father of James D., was born in Saratoga, and when but a youth engaged in farming in that town. A few years later he bought land in Coxsackie, Greene County, where he was one of the first settlers, and assisted in the raising of the first frame building by the square rule. The father of Daniel Brundege was a stanch patriot at the time of the Revolution; and a band of Indians and Tories, knowing this, came and plundered his house of all they could find, the family, with the exception of Daniel, who was but a small boy, and his little sister, having fled to the mountains to hide their clothes in the rocks. Mr. Brundege lived to the advanced age of eighty-four years, and died at the home of his son, James D., in Masonville.
James D. Brundege came when a boy with his parents to Coxsackie, where he attended the district schools of the town, afterward assisting his parents on the home farm, and a few years later working in the grist-mill. When twenty-two years of age, he married Hannah Pierce, of Coxsackie; and by this marriage there were eight children, namely: Mary, who married Abraham Teed, of Masonville; Levi, who married Fayette Dibble, of Masonville; Sarah Jane, who married Debias Finch, of Tompkins; James C., who died when twenty-one years of age; Cordelia, who married Edward Pierson, of Masonville; Caleb, the subject of this sketch; Perline, who died when ten years of age; and Fields, who married Abbie Hoag, of Tompkins.
Caleb Brundege received an education such as the farmers' sons of his day obtained at the district schools of the town, and until he started in life for himself, assisted his father on the home farm. He first purchased fifty acres from his father; and, as he grew in experience and desired a wider field for his labors, he sold this and finally bought one hundred and eighty acres in Tompkins, where he resides at the present day. On November 26, 1855, he married Helen Sutton, daughter of Sherman and Laurana (Folkerson) Sutton, of Hancock. Sherman Sutton's father, Caleb Sutton, was born in Westchester County, New York, was one of the earliest settlers in Hancock, and a resident and respected citizen of that town until his death. He married Sally Ann Flatenburg, a descendant of one of the earliest settlers of New York State. Sherman Sutton attended the district school of his native town, and started for himself in farming at an early age. He married Laurana Folkerson, daughter of Joseph Folkerson, in the town of Hancock; and, coming from East Branch in 1845, he bought a tract of timber land in Tompkins, where he engaged in the timber business for a few years, and then started a hotel on Trout Creek road. This last was not such a success financially as the former had been; and in a short time he gave it up, and went back to the lumber business. He now lives at the home of his son, Wallace Sutton, at Cannonsville, practically a retired lumber dealer. His daughter Helen was educated in her native town, and resided with her parents until her marriage.
Mr. and Mrs. Brundege have four children. The eldest, Watson J., who was born in Masonville, December 8, 1866, married Maggie J. Peck, of Tompkins. Sherman, born in Masonville, July 20, 1869, married Alice Scofield, and is engaged in the grocery business at Granton. Lorena M., their only daughter, was born in Tompkins, December 5,1875. Jasper, the youngest son, who lives at home with his parents, was born in Tompkins on June 1, 1879. Mr. Brundege is interested in all that concerns the welfare of the town, and has held offices of trust. Both he and his estimable wife are descended from early Dutch settlers of New York, and, like their ancestors, are respected and honored members of the community in which they live.