SARATOGA COUNTY, NEW YORK.
by NATHANIEL BARTLETT SYLVESTER
Portrait of Rockwell Putnam
Rockwell Putnam was the third son and fourth child of Gideon Putnam, whose life work is set forth on another page of this book. He was born on November 3, 1792, and passed his entire life in the village of Saratoga Springs.
He was possessed of strong natural common sense, was a man of positive opinions, and public spirited. He never sought after notoriety of any kind, but was rather retiring in his nature; yet his fellow-citizens, at various times, compelled him to accept the offices of town clerk, assessor, and supervisor. He was water commissioner under the law of 1847. Was a careful business man, and several times proprietor of Union Hall, Saratoga Springs; at first, immediately alter the death of his father, in 1812, and in connection with his brother Washington, from 1839 to 1849. After leaving Union Hall, in 1849, he followed no special business except as agent of several insurance companies, as director and president of the Commercial National Bank, and engaged in the management and improvement of his real estate.
He was one of the founders of the Episcopal church of Saratoga Springs, and in 1830, in connection with Edward Davis, the acting rector, and Henry Walton, he signed the certificate of incorporation of said body. He was proud of his church connection, and to his last moment his love for, and devotion to, the church was fervent and untiring. He filled official station in it for over forty years, first as a vestryman, and afterwards as senior warden.
Rockwell Putnam died on November 4, 1869. At his decease resolutions, expressive of his many excellencies and of sincere condolence with his Family at their loss, were passed by the officers of Bethesda church, by the Saratoga board of underwriters, and by the officers of the Commercial National Bank. A large meeting of citizens of the village of Saratoga Springs was likewise held at the American Hotel. At this meeting similar resolutions, testifying to his integrity, uprightness, spotless morals, suavity of manners, domestic and social virtues, and consistent Christian life, were feelingly passed.
Mr. Putnam married, in 1823, Elisabeth H. Peck, daughter of George Peck, and granddaughter of Robert Ellis, one of the earliest pioneers of the county, and who owned a thousand acres of land, which included the Ellis spring. This spring he tubed himself. He also owned the land on which the Geyser spring was afterwards discovered
Rockwell Putnam left two children, - George Rockwell, one of the proprietors of Union Hall, and who died in 1862, and Elizabeth, who married Rev. J.W. Shackleford, of New York city. Mr. Putman's widow is still living, at the age of seventy years, active in mind and body, and has just returned from an extensive tour abroad; including a visit to the Holy Land.
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