Biography courteously provided by Joyce Riedinger, Delaware County Coordinator.
ELRA MOSEMAN, an enterprising merchant of Halcottsville, was born in the town of Halcott, Greene County, March 23, 1869, a son of William H. and Margaret (Whitney) Moseman. His grandparents were Birdsill and Chloe (Faulkner) Moseman, the former of whom, when a young man, traveled afoot through the forest to Hunter, Greene County, where he obtained employment in cutting wood at fifty cents a cord, thus earning the first dollar he ever had. He worked in this way through the winter, boarding himself, and gaining early experience in industry and thrift. He married Chloe Faulkner, and bought a farm in Halcott, where J. Scudder now lives. Improving the farm, he lived upon it for some time, then sold it, and bought another one at Windham, where he lived about eighteen years. He then sold it, and bought another farm in the south part of the town, where his son opened a small store. After some time he divided this farm into house-lots, and started a pretty village, now called Big Hollow, which is rapidly increasing in population. It has a school, three churches, one store, a blacksmith-shop, etc., all due to the enterprise of the Moseman family. Mr. Moseman lived to be eighty-three years of age. His wife still survives him. He was a life-long Democrat, and a member of the Free Methodist Episcopal Church. He left five children--William H., Susie, Mattie, Robert, and John.
William H. Moseman received his education in the district school in Halcott. At the age of twenty-one he bought a one-hundred and sixty acre farm in the town, where he lived two or three years, and then sold out and bought a farm of one hundred acres at Big Hollow. Two years after, his health failing, he went into the mercantile business. He built a store at Big Hollow, started on a small scale, and gradually increased the business, but was finally obliged to give it up on account of ill-health, having been in the business eleven years.
Mr. Moseman is now living a retired left at Big Hollow. He married Margaret, daughter of Alfred and Phebe (Hammond) Whitney, and has two children: Mattie, living at home; and Elra, subject of sketch. In politics Mr. Moseman is a stanch Democrat.
Elra Moseman, the subject of our sketch, was educated at Big Hollow. After leaving school he worked in his father's store for one year, and then took half-interest in the business. A year later he sold his interest; and after some time spent in looking for a good location he became associated with A. A. Lewis at Windham, with whom he remained two years. Next he was employed as clerk in the hotel. From there he came to Halcottsville, and formed a partnership with F. W. Faulkner in the general merchandise business. This partnership continued six months, when Mr. Faulkner sold out his interest to Robert Moseman, and uncle of Elra. A short time after the formation of this new partnership Robert Moseman died, and Elra is now carrying on the business alone. In addition to the usual merchandise, he carries a good line of agricultural implements, drugs, etc.
Mr. Moseman married Mary A. Lockwood, daughter of Milo and Adaline (Lord) Lockwood. Her father is a well-known and progressive farmer of East Jewett, and has four children: George, who married Nancy Woodworth, and has one child; Mary, wife of Mr. Moseman; Henry, who married Lena Peterson, of East Jewett; and Pierce, who lives at home. Elra Moseman has two children: Lloyd, born November 18, 1888; and Gertrude, born November 29, 1890. Like his father and grandfather, he adheres to the principles of the Democratic party, and like them is energetic and enterprising. He is liberal in his religious views.