Town of Sand Lake


The following information is from Historical and Statistical Gazetteer of New York State by J. H. French, 1860. Debby Masterson transcribed it for us.

Ray Brown's website Ray's Place has town histories as published in Landmarks of Rensselaer County by George Baker ANDERSON (Syracuse, NY: D. Mason & Co., Publishers, 1897). For Chapter XXVII, Town of Sand Lake, click here.


Sand Lake was formed from Greenbush and Berlin, June 19, 1812. A part of Greenbush was taken off in 1843, and Poestenkill in 1848. It lies a little s. of the center of the co. Its surface is mountainous in the e. and hilly in the w. Perigo Hill, in the n.e. corner, is 900 feet above tide, and Oak Hill, near the center, is but little less in height. The e. part of the town is mostly covered with forest.1 Wynants Kil, flowing n.w. through the center, and Tsatsawassa Creek, in the e., are the principal streams. Along the valleys of these streams are several fine lakes, the principal of which are Sand, Glass, and Crooked Lakes, and Big Bowmans Pond. The soil among the mountains is a hard, sterile clay, but in the w. it is a good quality of gravelly loam. Three fourths of a mi. e. of W. Sand Lake is a chalybeate spring. Large quantities of cordwood, charcoal, and tan bark are carried to the Troy and Albany markets. Sand Lake (p.v.) contains the Sand Lake Seminary, a boarding school,2 foundery, cotton warp factory, 2 knitting mills and 300 inhabitants. West Sand Lake 3 (p.v.) contains 300 inhabitants, Sliters Corners 106, and Glass House 200,4 South Sand Lake is a p.o. Settlement commended before the Revolution.5 The census reports 7 churches in town.6

1 This town is a favorite resort of hunting and fishing parties.
2 The Sand Lake Collegiate Institute, established 1855 by Wm. H. Schram. The village also contains 1 paper and 1 flouring mill.
3 Formerly called "Ulinesville," from Bernard Uline. It contains also a sawmill, 2 flouring mills, and 2 woolen factories.
4 This village was formerly the seat of an extensive glass factory, and was called "Rensselaer Village." The company was organized in 1805, incorp. in 1806, and discontinued in 18__. In 1813 100 men were employed by the co.
5 Among the early settlers were Abram Frere, Nicholas Fellows, Andreas Barent, Fred. Shaver, Abram Brisol, Eph. Quinby, John Carmichael, Andreas Weatherwax, and Stephen Miller. Joshua Lockwood and Wm. Carpenter built the first grist mill in 1768, at W. Sand Lake.


The following information is from Gazetteer and Business Directory of Rensselaer County, N. Y., for 1870-71, compiled by Hamilton Child, 1870.

Sand Lake was formed from Greenbush and Berlin, June 19, 1812. A part of Greenbush was taken off in 1843, and Poestenkill in 1848. It lies a little south of the center of the county. The surface is mountainous in the east and hilly in the west. Perigo Hill, in the north-east corner, is 900 feet above tide; and Oak Hill, near the center, is about the same height. The east part of the town contains large forests, and is a favorite resort for hunting and fishing. Wynants Kil, flowing north-west through the center, and Tsatsawassa Greek, in the east, are the principal streams. Along the valleys of these streams are several small lakes, the principal of which are Sand, Glass and Crooked Lakes, and Big Bowman's Pond. The soil among the mountains is a hard, sterile clay, and in the west a good quality of gravelly loam. Three-fourths of a mile east of West Sand Lake is a chalybeate spring. Large quantities of cord wood, charcoal and tanbark are carried to the Troy and Albany markets.

The village of Sand Lake, situated near the center of the town, contains a Baptist church, two hotels, a store, four woolen mills, a cotton warp mill, a paper mill and about 1,000 inhabitants. The Woolen Mill of James Aken contains six sets of machinery, and manufactures knit goods for men's underwear. About 100 hands are employed, and 300,000 pounds of cotton and wool are consumed annually. Knowlson & Kidder employs sixty hands, runs four sets of machinery for the manufacture of knit goods, and consumes 200,000 pounds of cotton and wool annually. 0. B. Arnold runs two sets of machinery for knit goods, employs twenty-five hands, consuming annually 75,000 pounds of cotton and wool. Sand Lake Warp Mill Company runs 2,500 spindles in the manufacture of cotton warps, employs eighty operatives, consumes 240,000 pounds of cotton, and produces 1,920,000 yards of warp annually. The Paper Mill of Merwin & Co. consumes 600 tons of straw annually in the manufacture of straw paper, and employs twenty hands.

Sliter's Corners contains a Presbyterian church, a hotel, two stores, a carriage shop, a blacksmith shop and about twenty houses.

Glass House was so-called from its having been the seat of an extensive glass factory. It was formerly called Rensselaer Village. The glass company was incorporated in 1806 and discontinued in 1852. In 1813 the company employed one hundred men. It now contains a Methodist church, a hotel and about a dozen dwellings.

South Sand Lake contains a store, a hotel and a blacksmith shop.

The village of West Sand Lake, in the north-west part of the town, contains four churches, viz, Methodist, two Lutheran and a German Methodist; a hotel, four stores and about 300 inhabitants.

The settlement of this town was commenced previous to the Revolutionary War. Among the early settlers were Abram Frere, Nicholas Fellows, Andreas Barent, Fred. Shaver, Andreas Weatherwax, Abram Bristol, Ephraim Quinby, John Carmichael and Stephen Miller.

Joshua Lockwood and William Carpenter built the first grist mill, in 1768, at West Sand Lake.

The population of the town in 1865 was 2,606, and its area 21,-968 acres.

The number of school districts is eleven, employing thirteen teachers. The number of children of school age is 923; the number attending school 629; the average attendance 258, and the amount expended for school purposes for the year ending Sept. 30, 1869, was $3,906.94.


The following information is from "History of Rensselaer Co., New York," by Nathaniel Bartlett Sylvester, published in 1880.

A map made in 1767 by John R. Bleeker, Surveyor of "Manor Rensselaerwick" portrays Sand Lake as a vast wilderness, with only two families in residence. They were located in the southwest part. Other maps indicate that the western part of the town was settled first. Van Allen's survey made in 1788-1789 shows all of the town assigned to settlers except the eastern mountainous area.

By impounding the waters of Crooked, Glass and Burden Lakes with dikes and gate valves, the water that flows into the Wynantskill provided water power to many mills along the stream. The first grist mill was built in 1768 on the Wynantskill.

The Rensselaer Glass Works was organized in 1806 and continued in operation until 1853. Although the commercial product was window glass, a few other types of items were blown. According to "American Glass", by George S. and Helen McKearin, "Quite a number of authenticated Sand Lake individual pieces have been recorded such as jars, bowls, pitchers, canes and other whimseys. With few exceptions they are of light aquamarine glass and skillfully formed".

There were several saw mills in the town located on streams smaller than the Wynantskill. The first "steam" mill (run by a steam engine) was in the Taborton area. Another water-powered mill near the junction of the Taborton and Teal roads was later converted to steam by John Teal.

The Troy New England Railroad was organized in 1894. It went into operation from Troy to Averill Park in 1895. Electric cars operated on a daily schedule between these two stations. The company closed in February 1925.

Early Settlers
Adams family
Arnold, David (came from Nassau about 1815)
Averill family
Avery, ______
Baert, Andreas
Bailey, D.
Beam, N.
Bowerman, Timothy
Bowman, John (said to have been unpopular "because of his supposed sympathy with the mother-country during the Revolutionary struggle")
Brett family
Bristol, A., Jr.
Bristol, Abram
Bristol, D. and J.
Brumagem, R.
Brunagen, B.
Bullock, Lewis
Butz, William (from Providence, RI, located in Dutchess Co., then here; served in the Revolutionary war)
Calkins, D.
Calkins, E.
Campbell, _____
Carmichael, John (served in the Revolutionary war)
Carpenter, J.
Carpenter, Philip
Carpenter, William (built the first grist mill at West Lake in 1768, along with Joshua Lockwood)
Cipperly, H.
Clapper, C.
Clapper, John P.
Comb, _____
Conant, _____
Cook, J.
Coons, A. J.
Coons, Henry
Cornwell, D.
Cornwell, S.
Crannel, J.
Crannet, _____
Crook, John (served in the Revolutionary war)
Culver, _____
Culver, B.
Davis, J.
De Freest, _____
Emmons, J.
Farrell, _____
Father, G.
Feller, J.
Feller, N.
Feller, P.
Fellows, Nicholas (kept the first hotel in this section of country)
Fellows, Jacob
Fellows, Zachariah
Finch, Lewis
Fonda, _____
Ford, J.
Ford, S.
Frear, A.
Freest, _____ (this is probably De Freest)
Frere, Abram
Frothingham, Maj. Thomas (officer in the Revolutionary war; member of the Senate from the Eastern District in 1820-22)
Fuller, _____
Fuller, E.
Gardner, Philip
Gatler, Gottlieb (glass maker, located in the town in 1819)
Gilbert, Job (surveyor; received his farm from the Van Rensselaers as compensation for surveying "Middletown")
Goslin, William
Gregory, Daniel M. (merchant and glass manufacturer)
Gregory, Eben (tanner and shoemaker)
Gregory, Elias
Gregory, Justus (minister of the Methodist Church)
Gregory, Stephen (member of the Legislature in 1812)
Gregory, Uriah M. (one of the first physicians in the town)
Guyot, J.
Hammond, Samuel (blacksmith)
Hayes, S.
Hegeman, _____
Hemstead, _____
Herrington, J.
Higgenbottom, _____
Hogg, _____
Howland, _____
Howland, B.
Huntington, _____
Huntley, E.
Jacobs, H.
Jacobs, J.
Johnson, _____
Johnson, F.
Johnson, Thomas
Kelly, C.
Kenter, J.
Kerner, P.
Kilmer, _____
Kilmer, Philip
Kimmel, B.
Knowlson, Col. Richard J. (dry goods merchant, then glass business, farming and lumbering, came from Albany in 1825)
Krist, P.
Lappeus, W.
Leep, S. (probably Samuel Lape)
Lewis, _____
Lockwood, Joshua (built the first grist mill at West Lake in 1768, along with William Carpenter)
Mickel, R.
Migtills, _____
Miller, John
Miller, Stephen
Mott, Adam
Moul, Henry
Muller, H.
Nier, _____
North, J.
North, R. and C.
Owen, J
Peck, Eleazar (located on "Oak Hill" in 1791; lineal descendant of Henry Peck of New Haven)
Pratt, _____
Preston, J.
Quimby, Ephaim
Reichard, Michael
Reichard, Nicholas
Rexford family
Rexford, _____
Richmond, S.
Root, Isaac
Russell, W. and W.
Rykert, M.
Shaver, Frederick
Sheffer, F.
Sheppard, _____
Simmons, J.
Sipperly, Michael (came from Germany in 1712 and located at Rhinebeck, Dutchess Co.)
Smith, Andrew and Martinus
Smith, Noahdiah (came from Claverack at an early day)
Snook, John Tice
Souter, John (stone cutter; worked on the marble columns of the old capitol at Albany)
Spender, J.
Spicer, J.
Stone family
Stone, W.
Strope, J.
Stupplebeam, _____
Stupplebeem, John and Henry
Sutiff, _____
Sweating, L., Jr.
Sweating, L.
Taylor, Solomon (carpenter, justice of the peace, operated a saw mill; came from Schodack in 1791; died in 1861 at age 80)
Terris, W.
Thompson, Calvin (member of the Legislature in 1820-21)
Thompson, Thomas (ran a forge and saw mill on the site of the old woolen mill)
Thompson, Daniel (probably came from Chatham)
Thorn, Wright
Townsend, L.
Underwood, Reuben
Upham, John (came from down river at an early day; served in the Revolutionary war)
Van Alstyne, Wynant
Vickery, J.
Warner, John (blacksmith; came from CT; served in the Revolutionary war)
Wederwax, Andreas (came from Holland before the Revolutionary war; served in Revolutionary war)
Wederwax, Lawrence
Wells, _____
Westfall, Gilbert
Wethy, Henry (came from CT; served in the Revolutionary war from CT)
Wheaton, _____
Wickham, J. and W.
Wilkinson family
Wood, _____
Woodworth, R.
Younghans, Hendrick

Early Churches
St. Henry's Roman Catholic Church at Sand Lake, organized in 1868
The "Salem German Church of the Evangelical Association" at West Sand Lake, organized in 1845
The Baptist Church of Sand Lake, organized on Dec. 29, 1831
The Evangelical Lutheran Church of West Sand Lake, organized in 1837
The First Presbyterian Church of Sand Lake, organized Jan. 7, 1805
The Methodist Episcopal Church at West Sand Lake, organized about 1844
The Methodist Episcopal Church of Sand Lake, organized before 1834

Some Revolutionary War Soldiers
Arnold, David
Burroughs, Robert
Croat, John
Frothington, Maj. Thomas
Huntington, Joseph
Lane, Ebenezer
Peck, Daniel
Thompson, Thomas
Wetby, Henry

Some War of 1812 Soldiers
Lifite, Philip
Sipperly, Peter
Snyder, Philip
Wattenpaugh, Paul

Civil War Soldiers
Adriance, Wm., enl. Aug. 1862, 126th Regt.
Atkins, James, enl. July 26, 1863, 21st Cav.
Bailey, Samuel, enl. Aug; 15, 1862, 125th Regt.
Baker, Henry, enl. Feb. 1862, 104th Regt.
Bentley, Benjamin, enl. Aug. 30, 1863, 169th Regt.; wounded; lost right hand.
Bidwell, Wm., drummer, enl. Jan. 12, 1864, 169th Regt.
Borst, Joseph, enl. Oct. 1863; re-enl.
Boss, John, enl. May 11, 1861, 32d Regt.
Canfield, Addison, enl. Sept. 1864
Canfield, Ruel, enl. Feb. 1862, 104th Regt.
Carman, Alfred, enl. Oct.. 6, 1862, 169th Regt.
Carmichael, Gideon, enl. June 1862, 25th Regt.
Chase, Myron L., enl. April 7, 1865, 93d N. Y. Regt.
Clapper, John, enl. Aug. 16, 1862, 125th Regt.; wounded in right hand.
Clark, James E., sergt., enl. Sept. 1863, Griswold Cav.
Clark, Willard, enl. Sept. 1863, Griswold Cav.
Clements, Wm., enl. Sept. 3, 1862, 169th Regt.
Cole, C. H.,. enl. Aug. 24, 1862, 125th Regt.
Cook, David N., enl. Aug. 18, 1862, 113th Regt.; prisoner at Andersonville five months.
Coons, James H., enl. Sept. 15, 1864, 18th Cav.
Dunning, Wm., enl. June 1862, Mass. regt.
Ernst, Henry, enl. Sept. 25, 1862, 165th Regt.
Feathers, Henry, enl. Sept. 1862, 169th Regt.
Fellows, Geo. H., 2d sergt., enl. Aug. 23, 1862, 169th Regt.; pro. to com. sergt.
Frith, Geo., enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.
Fry, Austin.
Fryer, Geo., enl. Feb. 1864, 8th Art.; prisoner on Belle Isle.
Green, Fisher A., hosp. steward, enl. Dec. 1861, 91st Regt.; re-enl. Jan. 1, 1863.
Green, Liba A., enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.; trans. to 24th Regt.
Gregory, Justus KE., asst. surg., enl. Feb. 12, 1863, Navy, ship Chippewa.
Halsapple, Henry, enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.
Hart, Henry, enl. Sept. 12, 1864, 13th Regt.
Harvey, Henry, enl. 30th Regt.
Hary, Wm., enl. Aug. 1864, 10th N. Y. Regt.
Hayner, corp., enl. Oct. 6, 1862, 169th Regt.; pro. to capt. May 26, 1864
Hoffman, Philip.
Horten, Luther, enl. Aug. 15, 1862, 125th Regt.
Horton, Albert, enl. May 31, 1862, 25th Regt.
Horton, James, enl. Sept. 6, 1862, 169th Regt.
Horton, Richard, enl. Sept. 1862, 169th Regt.
Houghtaling, Tobias, enl. Dec. 19, 1861, 43d Regt.
Hulsapple, Daniel, enl. Aug. 1864, 12th Cav.
Husted, Silas, enl. Jan. 7, 1864, 13th Art., Co. F
Jones, Flauristen, enl. Dec. 1862, 125th Regt.
King, Thomas, enl. Oct. 1861, 77th Regt.
Knowlson, Andrew, enl. Sept. 5, 1862
Knowlson, John, asst. surg., enl. Sept. 5, 1862, 169th Regt.
Larkins, Charles, enl. Sept. 1, 1862, 169th Regt.
Leroy, Wm. C., enl. April 1861, 25th Regt.; re-enl. in 63d Regt.
Lewis, Wm., enl. Sept. 1864, 91st Regt.
Loyd, Wm., enl. April 1862.
Lyon, Wm. H., 2d lieut., enl. Oct. 6, 1862, 169th Regt.; pro. to 1st lieut.
Martin, Ebenezer J., enl. June 1, 1861, 30th Regt.
Marvin, Nathaniel, enl. Oct. 1862, 169th Regt.
McCready, Arthur, enl. June 1861, 30th Regt.; re-enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.
McCready, Geo., enl. June 1861, 30th Regt.
McCreedy, Arthur, enl. Aug. 5, 1862, 125th Regt., Co. C
McNee, Benjamin, enl. Aug. 1863.
Momrow, John, enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.
Moore, Albert M., enl. Feb. 1864, 6th Cav.
Orson, Bennett, enl. Sept. 20, 1864, Griswold Cav.
Pohl, Wm., enl. April 1862, 169th Regt.
Rappertsberg, Charles, 2d lieut., enl. May 13, 1861, 54th N. Y. Regt.
Redfield, Amasa, enl. Augl 27, 1861, 125th Regt.
Redfield, O. T., 4th sergt., enl. July 24, 1862, 125th Regt., Co. C
Redfield, Oliver, enl. Sept. 1, 1864, 125th Regt.
Reichard, Stillman, enl. Aug. 1864, 10th Regt.
Richards, Stephen, enl. June 28, 1861, 5th Cav.
Robbins, Wm. B., enl. March 3, 1862, 5th Art.
Saxby, John, enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.
Schritzman, Lorenzo, enl. Sept. 1862, 169th Regt.
Schritzman, Trieadland, enl. Feb. 1862, 104th Regt.
Shomaker, Peter, enl. Oct. 1862, 169th Regt.
Smith, Charles, enl. Sept. 1862
Strope, Andrew, enl. Dec. 13, 1861, 91st Regt.
Trapp, David, enl. Aug. 1862, 125th Regt.; wounded in foot.
Turner, Henry, enl. Jan. 4, 1864, 13th Art., Co. F
Wandolph, John, enl. Jan. 1862, 43d Regt.; re-enl. Jan. 1863.
Warager, Henry, enl. Sept. 1862, 169th Regt.
Winie, Robert I., enl. Sept. 1, 1864, Griswold Cav.
Wright, Charles F., enl. Dec. 28, 1863, 7th Art.
Zeling, Christopher, enl. Oct. 6, 1862, 169th Regt.

Died in Service
Adams, Albert E., enl. Jan. 19, 1864, 8th Art.; died July 22, 1864 in Libby Prison.
Clements, Nelson, enl. Sept. 3, 1862, 169th Regt.; died July 3, 1864 at Petersburg.
Cline, Barnard S., enl. Aug. 26, 1862, 169th Regt.; died Nov. 8, 1864 at Sand Lake.
Cole, Ervin E., enl. Sept. 1863; died 1864 at Albany hospital.
Crape, Joseph, enl. 10th N. Y. Regt.; died at home.
Dowling, Samuel, enl. Sept. 20, 1861; died July 14, 1862.
Hawkins, Leroy M., enl. July 1862, 134th Regt.; died July 1, 1863 at Gettysburg.
Hendrick, Francis, died June 1864 at Washington, D. C.
Knowlton, M., corp., enl. Aug. 1862, 169th Regt.; died Aug. 13, 1864 at Hampton Roads.
Marvin, Barney, enl. Sept. 1862, 169th Regt.; died June 1864 at Petersburg.
Peck, Marcus, sergt., enl. Sept. 5, 1862, 169th Regt.; died March 19, 1863 at Washington.
Robbins, John Z., enl. Aug. 1863, 21st Cav.; died Nov. 3, 1863 at Washington, D. C.
Saxby, Wm. H., enl. Dec. 1861, 91st Regt.; died May 25, 1863 at Port Hudson.
Slemmer, Wm., enl. July 1862, 125th Regt.; died July 2, 1863 at Gettysburg.
Smith, Charles A., enl. Aug. 30, 1862, 153d Regt.; died Aug. 4, 1863 at Washington, D. C.
Trumble, Andrew, enl. Oct. 18, 1862, 91st Regt.; died July 12, 1863 at New Orleans.
Wade, Scranton E., corp., enl. Sept. 1862, 169th Regt.; died Nov. 18, 1864 at Fortress Monroe.
Willy, John, enl. May 11, 1861, 30th Regt.; died Aug. 30, 1862 at Bull Run.



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