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Henry T. Botsford

From the Biographical Review, Volume XXXIII, located at the Durham Center Museum.
Transcribed by Celeste MacCormack.

HENRY T. BOTSFORD, a leading farmer of Greenville, Greene County, N.Y., was born in this town on December 18, 1845, son of Dr. Gideon and Maria L. (Tallmadge) Botsford. Dr. Botsford’s grandfather, Gideon Botsford, Sr., resided in Newtown, Conn. He was possessed of liberal means, had large influence in his community, and represented his town in the councils of his State. Amos, one of his thirteen children and the grandfather of Henry T. Botsford, was born in Newtown on February 13, 1780.

Having obtained an academic education, Amos Botsford entered upon the study of medicine at the age of eighteen years, received his diploma at twenty-one years, and immediately afterward came to the new town of Greenville and settled for the practice of his profession. Dr. Amos Botsford was married on September 20, 1801, to Elizabeth Clark, daughter of Joseph Clark, of Connecticut; and his house-keeping began in what has been known as the Ell. Knowles place. A few years after he purchased a lot and built the house in which Pierce Stevens now resides. Later he purchased of Jonathan Sherrill the lot and dwelling now occupied by his son-in-law, Dr. B. S. McCabe, and there resided until his death.

“For many years Dr. Amos Botsford was the only physician of standing or professional ability in this section of the country, consequently his services were much sought and his labors were arduous. His custom when visiting his patients was to ride on horseback. Few men possessed a finer physique than the Doctor. Of dignified appearance, he commanded the respect of all, even at first sight. He was a faithful, intelligent, and successful practitioner for over fifty years. He represented his town in the Board of Supervisors in the years 1826, 1827, 1831, 1834, and 1849. He was one of the incorporators of Greenville Academy. He was a faithful member of the Presbyterian church in Greenville, and for many years an acting Elder in it. He died August 16, 1863. His wife died December 3, 1855.

“There were born to them two sons and two daughters. Eliza, the eldest, born June 5, 1807, was married to Charles Callender, and died April 4, 1871, leaving three children, John, Charles, and David. Of these John is engaged in the manufacture of brick in Boston. Charles (deceased) was a manufacturer of paint in Newark, N.J. David is now deceased. Clark Botsford, the second child of Dr. Amos, was born September 15, 1808. He was graduated from Union College at the age of nineteen. He then studied law, and subsequently practised his profession in the western part of the State. Mary L., the youngest child, married Dr. B. S. McCabe, and has continued to reside in the house where she was born and in which her parents died.”

Gideon Botsford, third child of Dr. Amos, and father of Henry T. Botsford, was born on June 5, 1811. He obtained a good education at Greenville Academy, and subsequently, in 1832, was graduated from the Fairfield Medical College. He began the practice of medicine with his father, and for fifty years continued to devote his entire energies to the work of the profession he so much loved. Like his father he was a man of commanding appearance and agreeable address, and like him he won and enjoyed the respect and confidence of the community. Ever active, and having in view the improvement of his native village, he never lost an opportunity to promote the public welfare. He was for many years an Elder of the Presbyterian church, of which from early life he was a faithful member. He served as a prominent member of the Board of Trustees of Greenville Academy. The Doctor’s wife, Maria L., was the daughter of Dr. Henry Tallmadge, and a sister of Mrs. John G. Hart. (See sketch of John G. Hart.) Of the four children born to her, two are living - Henry T. and Anna M. Dr. Botsford was a Democrat in politics, and served the town as Supervisor for two terms.

Henry T. Botsford resided with his father up to the time of the latter’s death. In 1878 he purchased of Robert Hawley a farm that he owned for eleven years, and in 1890 he bought the farm which is now his home. His house, which is the finest in the village, was begun in 1891 and completed in 1892. Mr. Botsford is one of the largest land-owners in the town. He now carries on the homestead farm of twenty acres opposite his own, the Gideon Hickock farm of one hundred acres, and the George Conklin farm of two hundred and twenty acres. He is a man of wide reading, and especially well informed on topics of public interest.

Mr. Botsford married in 1882 Mary, daughter of Thomas and Emily Robbins, and a native of Greenville. Her father was carpenter by trade, and he also carried on a farm. He died at the age of seventy-one, having been twice married. His wife, Emily, who was born in Greenville, died in 1891. Of her two children Mrs. Botsford is the only one living. Mr. and Mrs. Botsford have one child, Francis Helena, by name. In politics Mr. Botsford is a Democrat. He has dealt to quite an extent in real estate. He and his wife are members of the Presbyterian church, and he has been one of its trustees for many years. 

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