Biography courteously provided by Joyce Riedinger, Delaware County Coordinator.
HENRY FINCH, a well-to-do, retired farmer of Sidney, Delaware County, N.Y., was born in Greene County, June 22, 1823, son of Jonas and Henrietta (Leonard) Finch. His father was a native of Greene County, and his mother of Dutchess County. Amos Finch, father of Jonas, served as a soldier in the Revolution; he was a farmer, and lived to the advanced age of ninety years. Jonas Finch was brought up in the county of his birth, whence he moved in 1833 to Delaware County, and took up one hundred acres of land. By hard work and energy he added to this until he had one hundred and sixty acres, and owned one of the finest farms in the neighborhood. He was the father of eleven children, of whom the following survive: Henrietta, widow of Alexander Bryan, residing in East Sidney; William and Jonas, at Masonville; Henry, the subject of this sketch; John, located in Tennessee; and Amos in Sidney Centre. Mr. Jonas Finch died at the age of seventy-three, and his wife aged eighty-one.
Henry Finch was educated in the district schools of Sidney, living with his parents and helping on the farm until he attained the age of twenty-one, when he hired himself out by the month. He followed this for several years, and, being of a frugal turn of mind, saved his money, which enabled him to buy his first land in the town of Masonville, a farm of fifty acres. He lived there for one year, when he sold out and moved to Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, where he bought an uncultivated tract of land of about one hundred and fifty acres, which he occupied for some time, bringing it into a good state of cultivation. At the end of about fourteen years he moved to Masonville, and there carried on the business of a general farmer for twenty-two years. In 1886 he moved to Sidney village, where he now lives retired. Mr. Finch is a veteran of the Civil War, having enlisted in 1862 in the One Hundred and Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania volunteer Infantry, Company A. He was in the service ten months, when his health gave way, and he was honorably discharged from the army at Harrisburg, Pa., August 5, 1863.
Mr. Finch was married March 1, 1849, to Mary J. Carr, who died August, 1880, aged fifty-one. By this union twelve children were born, eleven of whom are living, namely: Zaeuch, a farmer of Sidney; Sarah, wife of E. Teed, of Pennsylvania; Henrietta, wife of Duane Hand, of Otsego County; Louisa, wife of Robert Stewart, of Sidney; Anna, wife of Warren Hodge, also residing in Sidney; Maggie, wife of Edward House, of Tompkins; Henry Finch, of Franklin; Allie, wife of James Hodge, of Sidney; Norman and James, residents of Sidney; Nora, wife of E. Wheat, of Sidney.
On February 7, 1883, Mr. Finch married for his second wife, Mrs. Hannah Crounse, the widow of Abram Crounse, a farmer of Albany County, and mother of one child, Mary, wife of John Armstrong, of Unadilla. Mrs. Finch was born in Guilford, Chenango County, October 20, 1827, her parents being James and Catherine Lewis. They reared twelve children, six of whom are now living, namely: Mrs. Finch; Rensselaer Lewis, in Pennsylvania; Joseph Lewis in Michigan; Sally Ann, wife of David Loomis, of Sidney; Abiel Lewis, of Pennsylvania; Julia, wife of Norman White, of Bradford County, Pennsylvania.
Mr. Finch is a man of quiet and refined tastes, and in his old age enjoys a mental vigor which years have not impaired, his generous, kindly nature endearing him to neighbors and friends.