HISTORY OF THE TOWN OF BROOME. -
WHEN FORMED - NAME CHANGED - CATSKILL CREEK - INDIAN TRAIL - GENERAL ASPECT - FIRST SETTLERS - DANIEL SHAYS - HIS LIFE - REBELLION AND DEATH - DAVID WILLIAMS - HIS LIFE - INCIDENTS RELATING TO CAPTURE OF ANDRE - LIVINGSTONVILLE - ASA STARKWEATHER - HIS ARGUMENT IN CONVENTION - DEATH - ADAM MATTICE - PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH - METHODIST CHURCH - DRAFT OF 1813 - SMITHTON - HUBBARD'S - THE VLY - SUPERVISORS - BOUNDS.
This town was one of the original six that were formed March 1, 1797, and bore the name of Bristol. Upon the 6th of April, 1808, for reasons unknown to the writer, the name was changed to Broome, in honor of the then acting Lieutenant Governor, John Broome, who was repeatedly elected with Daniel D. Thompkins, as Governor. Undoubtedly, had not death closed his successful and honored career in 1811, he would have retained the position to the close of Governor Tompkins administration, at least, in 1816, as he was so highly admired by the people.
The Catskill creek takes its rise in this town, and was formerly fed by a large swamp, called the vlaie, ( now pronounced vly,) now drained, which has been a marked locality since the Aborigines of the country formed a path leading from the Hudson River, near Catskill, to the Schoharie valley and the wigwams of the western tribes of the confederation. It was along this path following the Catskill creek, to the Vly, that the first German settlers of the Schoharie valley traversed ( as noted in Chapter II,) in the winter time of 1713. Along this path also the Stockbridge and their more southern neighboring tribes passed, to reach the hunting grounds of Skochalie--or her medicinal waters, long, long before the " remnant of tribes" formed one, along the course of her beautiful river. Perhaps along this path the Mohawk braves traveled to meet the valiant Mohegans in deadly strife, for the supremacy of power, and again to pounce upon the weaker tribes of Manhatten and Hackensack, to extort tribute and obedience to their King and councils. Of that primitive and well beaten path nothing is left but the rippling waters that so often slaked the thirst, and guided the steps of the bold athletic warriors through the mighty forest of giant timber. Civilization has marked a change. The forest has disappeared; along the romantic stream and upon the sides of the lofty hills-- spacious fields now are seen whose luxuriant verdure are as smiles of Providence upon the labors of intelligence and civilization. Instead of the war whoop or death yell of the savage, and the howling of wild beasts, that once awakened the echoes of the forest, peace is found in the grazing herds, and in the shouts of happy and prosperous yeomen, which are heard amid the clatter of farming implements, gathering the abundant harvest, which was made possible through the labors, anxieties, hopes, fears and sacrifices of a noble race that drew inspiration of liberty from the teachings of holy writ.
During the Revolution, but few settlers were found within the limits of the town. But one of whom we have any knowledge remained at home and braved the dangers that surrounded the border settlers. Derick Van Dyck passed through the troublesome times, with but an occasional stay at the Upper Fort, when an invasion was expected, and seemed to escape the trouble and suffering that those along the Schoharie creek experienced. His residence was near the present village of Livingstonville, and was burned by Tories in the year 1781. He then removed to Albany and remained until the close of the war. The Tories of the Hudson river that lived near Catskill, and the Indians of the Susquehanna, kept up a continual communication with each other through this territory, and it was there that the scouts of the Middle and Upper Forts often came to intercept the loyalists as they passed through, and caught many from time to time and conveyed the royal adherents to Albany for investigation and imprisonment.
Nothing of importance occurred within the town of a warlike nature during the war, as the settlement was too sparse to draw the enemy for murder and plunder. At the close of the war emigration commenced to flow in from the river counties and Schoharie valley, beside several from the Eastern States. Those from the latter were:--
Asa Bushnell, Joshua Busnell, Hezekiah Weston, George Watson, John Gillet, Ebenezer Wickham, George Burtwick, Ezra Chapman, Timothy Kelsey, Elisha Humphry, Lyman Burchard, James Ellis, Henry Rifenburgh. All of whose families are still to be found within the town.
Daniel Shays. --Among the pioneers of this section was the notable Daniel Shays, the leader of " Shay' s Rebellion" in 1786 and ' 87. He fled to this then isolated country and settled where the village of Preston Hollow now stands, having purchased a large tract of land, a considerable of which lay in the town of Broome. The General was a fine looking man and commanded the respect of all whom he met. His son Hiram studied law and removed to the western part of the State. The General died in Preston Hollow in 1821, where his remains lie beneath a plain head-stone, while his name is more endurably inscribed upon the pages of history as a staunch yet mistaken advocate of liberty. He was a subaltern officer during the Revolution and made a mark as a brave and efficient soldier, which no doubt was the reason his brother veterans chose him to lead them in defiance of law or order to compel the general court of Massachusetts to redress the people' s grievances which they claimed were brought on by heavy taxation through official incompetency to manage the Government.
The facts of the case we her will state, they being so closely connected with our former citizen it can but prove of interest to the reader. For a few years after peace was proclaimed the Government was simply a Revolutionary confederation. Each State was a sovereignty in fact, by itself, and collected its own revenue, Congress not having power to levy duties nor means to carry on the public service only as their annual requisitions for money to the several States where honored. It was without power to issue bills of credit, make treaties or regulate commerce on a permanent basis with foreign powers, or make loans. In fact it was a Congress only in name, as was the Government. The consequence was every thing was in confusion. Foreign commerce was annihilated and trade was embarrassed. Business of every description became paralyzed, property depreciated and ruin stared the whole country in the face. Money was so scarce that when taxes were to be paid " any useful articles," says Goodrich, " were received in lieu of money."
The people had passed through the fiery furnace of war and stood without a knowledge of the administration of National affairs, expecting that prosperity would follow without a system or head. The people of Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Massachusetts became openly discontented, especially in the latter State. They met in county conventions in 1786 and drew up addresses to the General Court of the State, made volumes of resolves in which they censured the Government officials and threatened open revolt. The veterans of the Revolution were still hot blooded and formed large armed companies and drew together at Springfield in the winter of 1786, numbering several thousands. They chose Daniel Shays as their leader and prepared to march to Boston and compel the court to redress the people' s grievances, but concluded to encamp and petition to that body.
During the insurrectionary movements of the discontented, the Governor ordered a force under General Lincoln to march against them, and while collecting his men and marching to the rebels' encampment a force with Shays at their head made an attack upon the arsenal at Springfield, in January, 1787. Upon General Shepard, the State officer in charge, firing upon them with a cannon they retreated in confusion and the whole force withdrew to Pelham. When Lincoln came up with his force several engagements occurred between small parties, each of which sickened the insurgents and made the leaders' spirits droop. Lincoln marched to Pelham to engage with Shays, while Shays marched backwards earnestly begging, through messengers, to negotiate for a pardon. But Lincoln was not to be trifled with and demanded a surrender. Shays retreated from on point to another until some time in February, when Lincoln suddenly pounced upon him at Petersham and put the whole force to rout. Shays made tracks for New York State as he was unable to make a stand against the State troops. The army of insurgents soon laid down their arms and peace once more dawned over the scene. General Shays received a pardon in 1788 and sought the quiet of this town to hide himself from the world. He possessed considerable of this world' s goods and lived the life of a gentleman, undoubtedly well pleased with the leniency shown him by the austere government of old Massachusetts.
Following Shays came one of America' s noblest patriots, David Williams.
David Williams was one of the captors of Major Andre, and one whose name will resound to all futurity as a true and unswerving patriot. David Williams, Isaac Van Wart, John Paulding! At the mention of their names, what assurances of fidelity to country, principle, and manly work, lift the student above the corrupt bickering that fill the pages of our National histories, and arouse a pride in the integrity of the uncouth yeomen that battled against royalty and bequeathed to us our liberties.
Coming to us from such sources and through such constancy and devotion, their value is enhanced and honor unstained. Of him who honored our County by choosing Broome' s romantic hill-sides as his home, we extract from the Albany Daily Advertiser the biography, dictated by himself but a few months previous to his death, in which the circumstances of Andre' s capture are related.
" I was born in Tarrytown, then called Philips Manor, Westchester county, N.Y., October 21, 1754. I entered the army in 1775, at the age of 21, and was under General Montgomery at the siege of Fort St. John, and afterwards on board the flat-bottomed boats to carry provision. Served out my time which was six months, and enlisted again in the spring of 1776, and continued in the service by different enlistment' s, as a New York militiaman until 1779, etc.
In 1778, when in Captain Acker' s company of New York militia, at Tarrytown, I asked his permission to take a walk in company with William Van Wart, a boy sixteen or seventeen years old and proceeded with him, to the cross-roads on Tompkins' ridge. We stood looking a few moments and saw five men coming, who had firearms; we jumped over a stone fence and concealed ourselves in a corner of it, and observed that they were armed with two muskets and three pistols. They came so near that we recognized two of them, viz.: Wm. Underhill and Wm. Mosher, who were Tories, and known to be of DeLancey' s corps. When they came within proper distance, I said to my companion, ' Billy, neck or no joint! ' I then said aloud, as if speaking to a number, with a view of intimidating them, ' Men make ready? ' They stopped immediately. I then told them to ground their arms, which they did. I then said, ' March away,' and they did so. I then jumped over the fence, secured their arms, and made them march before us to our quarters. I continued in the service until a week or ten days before the year 1780. In December, 1779, Captain Daniel Williams, who was commander of our company, mounted us on horses, and he went to Morrisania, Westchester county. We swept all Morrisania clear, took probably $5,000 worth of property, and returned to Tarrytown and quartered at Young' s house. My feet being frozen, my uncle Martinus Van Wart, took me to his house. I told Captain Williams that the enemy would soon be at Young' s, and that if he remained there he would be on his way to Morrisania before morning, but he paid no attention to my remarks--he did not believe me. In the course of the night a woman came to my uncle' s crying, ' Uncle Martinus! Uncle Martinus! ' The truth was, the British had surrounded Young' s house, made prisoners of all the company except two, and burnt the barn.
Having got well of my frozen feet, on the 3d of June, 1780, we were all driven from Tarrytown to the upper part of Westchester county, in the town of Salem. We belonged to no organized company at all, were under no command, and worked for our board or johnny-cake. Isaac Van Wart, who was a cousin of mine [ the father of Williams and mother of Van Wart were brother and sister,] Nicholas Storms and myself went to on a visit. We carried our muskets with us, and on our way took a Quaker, who said he was going to New York after salt and other things. The Quaker was taken before the American authority and acquitted. In July or August a number of persons, of whom I was one, went on a visit to our friends in Tarrytown, and while on the way took ten head of cattle, which some refugees were driving to New York, and, on examination before the authority, the cattle were restored to their right owners, as they pleaded innocence, saying they were stolen from them. I then returned to Salem, and worked with a Mr. Benedict for my board, until the 22d of September. It was about one o' clock P M., as I was standing in the door with Mr. Benedict' s daughter ( who was afterward my wife,) when I saw six men coming. She remarked, ' They have got guns.' I jumped over a board fence and met them. ' Boys," said I, where are you going? ' They answered ' we are going to Tarrytown.' I then said ' if you will wait until I get my gun I will go with you.' The names of the six persons were, Isaac Van Wart, John Paulding, William Williams, John Yerks and James Romer, the name of the sixth I have forgotten. We proceeded about fifteen miles that night, and slept in a hay barrack. In the morning we crossed Buttermilk hill, when John Paulding proposed to go to Isaac Reed' s and get a pack of cards to divert ourselves with. After procuring them we went out to Davis' hill, where we separated, leaving four on the hill and three, viz.: Van Wart, Paulding and myself, proceeded on the Tarrytown road about one mile and concealed ourselves in the bushes on the west side of the road, and commenced playing cards three handed, that is, each one for himself. We had not been playing more than an hour, when we heard a horse galloping across a bridge but a few yards from us. Which of us spoke I do not remember, but one of us said, ' there comes a trader going to New York.' We stepped out from our concealment and stopped him. ' My lads, ' said he, ' I hope you belong to our party.' We asked him what party? ' he replied, ' the lower party.' We told him we did. He then said ' I am a British officer, have been up the country on particular business, and would not wish to be detained a minute,' and as a token to convince us he was a gentleman, he pulled out and showed us his gold watch; we then told him we were Americans. ' God bless my soul,' said he, ' a man must do any thing these times to get along,' and then showed us Arnold' s pass. We told him it would not satisfy us without searching him. ' My lads,' said he, ' you will bring yourselves into trouble.' We answered, ' we did not fear it,' and conducted him about seventy rods into the woods. My comrades appointed me to search him; commencing with his hat, I searched his person effectually, but found nothing until I pulled off his boot, when we discovered that something was concealed in his stocking. Paulding caught hold of his foot and exclaimed, ' by G--d, here it is! ' I pulled off his stocking, and inside of it, next to the sole of his foot, found three half sheets of paper enclosed in another half sheet which was endorsed ' West Point' ; and pulling off the other boot and stocking, I found three like papers, enclosed and endorsed as the others. On reading them, one of my companions said, ' by G--d, he is a spy! ' We then asked him where he got those papers? he told us, of a man at Pine' s bridge,' but he said he ' did not know his name.' He offered us his gold watch, his horse, saddle, bridle and 100 guineas, if we would let him go; we told him ' no, unless he would inform us where he got the papers.' He answered us as before, but increased his offer to 1,000 guineas, his horse, etc.: we told him again we would not let him go; he then said, ' gentlemen, I will give you 10,000 guineas' [ nearly $50,000] ' and as many dry goods as you will ask; conceal me in any place of safety while you can send to New York with an order to Sir Henry Clinton from me, and the goods and money will be procured so that you can get them unmolested.' [ Paulding then told him, as he stated on the trial of Joshua H. Smith, a few days after the arrest] : ' No, by G--d, if you would give us 10,000 guineas you should not stir a step; we are Americans, and above corruption, and go with us you must.' We then took him, about twelve miles, to Col. Jamieson' s quarters at North Castle."
The account of the capture is an old story in history but should be ever new to Americans and all lovers of manly principle. Mr. Williams and his honored comrades were chided by the emissaries of royalty as " roving renegades," and their motives*(see Appendix) were questioned, while those of them captives were applauded by pen and tongue. We of today may look upon the comrades as sturdy yeoman, clad in homely attire, burned by the exposure of sum and storms and with minds and forms untutored by scholastic advantages or courtly graces, while with Andre, his mind, body and aspirations were the offspring of royal culture from the lap of luxury and pretended virtue. The three were on duty without pay to intercept " unlawful intercourse with the enemy," and boldly wandered here and there without disguise or wantonness. Andre was on a mission degrading in the estimation of Christian soldiery, sneaking in disguise to the citadel of an honorable adversary and subtly winning a weak and unsteady heart, fired by a jealous and maddened brain, to betray all principles of honor and every characteristic of patriotism, for gold. And when the royal siren, through the admired affability of his address had accomplished his object, with assumed name and garments he bent his course to deliver up to his commander that which he had so dishonorably obtained, and bask once more in luxury and the petted tamperings of the giddy society of New York. But " halt! " is the command, and when the three stepped forth and their demands and nationality were made known, then again the subtlety of the man so much admired and honored was brought in requisition. But he had not met an Arnold this time, or men whose appearance or principles were assumed. " We are Americans! " was their introduction, " what are you? " Andre had already told, but not possessing that steadfast patriotism that filled the hearts of Williams, Van Wart and Paulding, he disowned his country and claimed allegiance to that, which the papers he hid in his boots, were to enslave.
Again money, goods and undoubtedly British glory were offered for the corruption of their hearts, but again we say he had not met an Arnold! The pall fell over the hopes of Clinton, treason of Arnold and the strategy and corpse of Andre, while veneration and the blessings of a grateful people and an immortal renown fell upon the three brave and steadfast patriotic yeomen! Williams died on the 2nd of August, 1831, at the age of seventy-seven, and was buried at Livingstonville with military honors, where his ashes lay until the 4th of March, 1876, when they were removed to Rensselaerville, and on the 19th of July following they were again disturbed and now lie beneath an appropriate monument near the stone fort at Schoharie, particularly described in another portion of this work. Mr. Williams left an only son, David W. Williams, who retained the farm and who, with the father has passed away leaving two sons, William C. and Daniel, to perpetuate the family name. The homestead is upon the mountain north of Livingstonville and should give to the elevation the name of Mount Williams.
This small yet picturesque village is upon the Catskill creek and surrounded by giant hills, whose rough appearance denotes unproductiveness. Yet, while the labor is greater in cultivating, we find their productiveness copes very favorably with more level sections. The original settlers were chiefly Yankees, whose fascination can only be satisfied by lofty hills, bubbling springs and rushing streams, with herds of cattle and sheep surrounding him and growing in value while he without fear of the return of another day enjoys the noon- day nap and the thoughts of others from his welcome newspaper or favorite book.
This village contained but one house in 1812 and was not a center of business until about the year 1820. Previous to that date the " Frisbee tavern" farther down the valley was the center where the people of the neighborhood met to hear and tell the news, obtain their mail and cogitate upon the unjust oppressions of their landlords, the Livingstons. that family, owning a large tract of land within the town and Albany county adjoining, stationed a relative, Asa Starkweather, here in 1810 to look after their interests in the sale and leasing of land and collection of rents.
Asa Starkweather was a native of New London, Conn., and a mechanic. He began business in New York City but was unsuccessful and settled here at the age of thirty-seven. In 1820 he was appointed one of the delegates to the State Constitutional Convention, in which he took an active part in debate, especially upon the appointing powers. In his speech the 5th of October, 1820, he said:--
" The principle cause of complaint by the great body of yeomanry against the present council of appointment has not specifically been mentioned by any gentleman of the committee. It is not because the person appointed happened to be of different political principles; nor because members of the legislature interfere with the council and mingle their official duties with political considerations; but because bad men are sometimes appointed, who are in fact a terror to those who do well.
" The charity and good feeling of the farmers induce them to believe that the respectable council did not know their private characters: consequently, the electors say, ' bring the appointments to the people.' Sir, by this they do not mean to bring the appointments directly to the ballot boxes; they do not wish additional confusion and turmoil there. But they want a selection made, where the characters of the candidates are known; and if the selection is made by the Board of Supervisors, and Judges of the county court, they must know the character of every man they recommend, and they dare not recommend a bad man, the ghost of public clamour would haunt them in their dreams; and by this mode of selection the people would be safe; it is the best plan that has been suggested and I shall vote for it. But let us for one moment consider the plan of election. It is a fact that immoral men can bring more votes to the polls than any moral, good man; and if they are not directly the candidates, they will have their friend for a candidate, and by using their influence and rallying their satellites, will lay him under obligations to favor them in his official capacity; consequently a remedy for the evil would not be found here. The Gentleman form New York is opposed to the amendment, because it gives to the executive the appointing power, who is not responsible for the appointments.
" Sir, I am willing to give this power to the executive, because we ask no responsibility from him. He cannot do wrong unless he travels out of the two lists of candidates, and this he cannot do by the amendment proposed. Sir, it has been urged that no possible good could arise from having the Governor appoint and commission the Justices of the peace. In answer to this, as the executive is commander-in-chief of the militia, and whose official duty is to see that the laws are faithfully executed, it is highly proper that every commissioned officer should receive his authority from the chief magistrate, and to whom he should be accountable for the faithful performance of his duty."
Mr. Starkweather was not placed upon any committee and his views upon the various subjects brought before the convention, did not receive the approval of the majority. He appeared to be strongly in favor of centralization, and giving the right of suffrage only to property owners, and men of lucrative positions. He died on the 10th of August, 1846, at the age of sixty-three years and eight months, and was buried in the old cemetery. His wife was Mary Tobinson, who died in April, 1862, in the seventy-ninth year of her age. Beside them lie Mrs. Starkweather' s father and mother, James and Sarah Robinson, who passed several years with their daughter, in her secluded home.
Adam Mattice.---In our rambles to the new cemetery, upon the hill-side, south of the village, we were led to the grave of one of Broome' s representative men, Adam Mattice.
Mr. Mattice was a careful business man and held various local offices in the town and gave universal satisfaction to his people who elected him to the office of supervisor in 1832 and ' 34, when he made himself prominent as an official, which gained for him the nomination and election of sheriff in 1834. During his term of office, considerable discontent was made manifest by the Livingston tenants in this portion of the County, but Mr. Mattice faithfully performed his duties without incurring the displeasure of his Anti-Rent neighbors. In 1848 he was elected to the State Legislature from the Eastern district with James Parsons, of Leesville, and in 1861 was once more sent to the board of supervisors.
Becoming an old man he retired from business and official cares, and died at his home on the 10th of January, 1868, at the age of seventy-five. His wife, Nancy Winans lived till December, 18, 1874, when she followed her husband at the ripe old age of eighty-two.
The Presbyterian Church of Livingstonville is the oldest religious organization in town, and upon its organization in 1817 as a Congregational church, was the only one of that denomination in the County. Their meetings were held in private residences and the school house until the year 1831, when the present edifice was erected.
The year previous it was changed to a Presbyterian organization. The first members were seven in number, as follows:--
George Stimson and wife, Asa Bushnell and wife, Rhoda Clark, Sally Stimson Asa Starkweather.The first elders were:--
Asa Starkweather, Joshua Bushnell, Timothy Kelsey, Asa Bushnell.The present ones are:--
Robert Bortwick, Arthur Bortwick, E. W. Dutton.
Mr. Dutton to whom we are indebted for information in regard to this church, and present clerk, states that S.R. Gray was the first pastor, and B.D. Wyckoff the present, but is unable to give a list of those in the intervening time.
Julius Dutton.---Among the early settlers of this section was Julius Dutton who died July 27, 1870, at the age of seventy-nine. Of him the Schoharie Republican of that date says: " Mr. Dutton was eleven years of age when he settled in Broome, from Litchfield county, Connecticut. During a long and eventful life he filled many responsible positions, always discharging the trusts reposed in him with signal ability and fidelity. he was during a period of thirty-nine years a member of the Presbyterian church and thirty-eight years a deacon of the same. He was twice married and was the father of thirteen sons, eleven of whom, with his widow survive him. "
The Methodist Episcopal Church of this place was organized about the year 1824, by the Rev. John Bangs, long a circuit preacher and presiding elder in the New York conference. The records not being accessible, we are indebted to the memory of Mr. R. Ellis, long a member of the society and the present class-leader. James Ellis, the father of our informant was one of the leading ones in the organization.
The first trustees were:---
Elisha Humphrey, Lyman Burchard, Henry Rifenburgh.
The first church building was erected down the valley about one half a mile, in the pine grove, and removed to the present site in 1845. The membership is forty and supports in connection a progressive Sabbath school.
The first quota drawn in 1812 for the defense of the Northern borders against British invasion, had become depleted by an epidemic that raged fearfully in the camps, and the enemy making extensive preparations for the campaign of 1813, the government was forced to call for more men, and ordered a draft form the ranks of the militia, requiring every fourth man. To Mr. Ellis we are indebted for the list drawn from this town. The militia company met at the " Frisbee house," and the following were drawn:--
Joseph A. Rawley, Carly Robinson, Amos Serles, Daniel Serles, Heman Roe, Walter Winans, Jeremiah Reed, Bates Reed, Peter Bunker, William See, Blaisdel Dickinson. Peter Bunker was deputy sheriff in 1819, and while in office died at Schoharie.
Aaron and Giles H. Hubbard settled at this place in the beginning of the century, and were two well educated and enterprising men. The latter was a graduate of Union College and fitted himself for the law, but was called upon to succeed Abraham Keyser as Sheriff of the County. He received the appointment on the 9th of February, 1819, and served until February 12, 1821.
Aaron was elected to the Legislature in 1816 and ' 17, with Isaac Barber and Peter A. Hilton, and again in 1819 with Jedediah Miller and Peter Swart, Jr. Both of these gentlemen held local offices, but at what time we are unable to say as the early records of the town are not accessible. Aaron exchanged his farm with Comfort Smith for four hundred acres of land in " New Connecticut" or Ohio, upon which he removed, where the city of Cleveland now stands. The exchange made the family immensely wealthy, as they continue to hold the title to a goodly share of the original farm which was divided into city lots.
Smithtown was the name given to the hamlet after Mr. Smith became a resident.
The Christian Church of this place was organized, and a house of worship built in 1859, under the patronage of Rev. Mr. Roberts. The society are energetic and sincere in their liberal views of belief, and call to their pulpit able men.
The Rev. Charles S. Duncan, an energetic and thorough Methodist preacher, organized the Methodist Episcopal Church at this place in 1828. At one time during Rev. Mr. Duncan' s pastorate, the congregation assembled to listen to his sermon, when he became suddenly indisposed and sent his two sons ( at present living, Joel and William,) then mere lads, to give the people notice that there would not be any preaching. The boys considered themselves capable of leading in the services and entered the house with the dignity of riper years, and requested the people to be seated. William led in a long prayer, and was followed by Joel with an exhortation, after which a hymn was sung and the congregation dismissed.
The society built the present edifice in 1845, and it proved a nucleus around which the village has grown and become a center for the farming community to find mechanics and tradesmen for repairs and domestic supplies.
The " Vly" was drained by the farmers owning portions of it nearly thirty years ago, which gave to them valuable land in too great contrast to the hill-sides that surround it. Here might be obtained the best water poser in the County by building aqueducts at each outlet to hold the water, so abundantly supplied by springs. The enterprise and capital of the Eastern States would here create a business that would soon overbalance the whole town in value of production by establishing factories of different characters.
The records of this town have not been kept with that care they should have received, and from time to time have been borrowed by piece-meal and not returned. Being one of the first towns formed, the early records could but be interesting and valuable. We copy the supervisors elected, from the earliest dates that could be found:---
1830---S. Bortle. 1831---Barent Stryker. 1832---S. Bortle. 1833---Adam Mattice. 1834--- do 1835---Joseph Scofield. 1836---W.J. Mackey. 1837---Joseph Scofield. 1838--- do 1839---Daniel Jackson. 1840---Henry Tibbetts. 1841---William W. Stewart. 1842---Hiram Mace. 1843---A. Stanton. 1844---Nelson Fanning. 1845---Martin B. Thomas. 1846---Philip Couchman. 1847---Anson Clark. 1848---Wilkeson Wilsey. 1849---George Cheritree. 1850---Wilkeson Wilsey. 1851---George Cheritree. 1852---E. Benjamin. 1853---Lyman Hulburt. 1854---Ogden Benjamin. 1855---James F. Connor. 1856---Robert C. Leonard. 1857---Ogden Benjamin. 1858---Robert C. Leonard. 1859---E. Benjamin. 1860---E.A. Wightman. 1861---James F. Connor. 1864---Andrew Graham. 1864---Hiram Sornberger. 1866---George W. Ellis. 1867--- do 1868---R. Benjamin. 1869--- do 1870---Nelson Rust. 1871--- do 1872---Wilkeson Wilsey. 1873--- do 1874---Ira Benjamin. 1875---Nelson Rust. 1876---George A. Button. 1877---John H. Mattice. 1878---Wesley Rifenburgh. 1879--- do 1880---Erastus Almy. 1881---Myron Losee. 1882--- do
MEMBERS OF ASSEMBLY.
1816---Aaron Hubbard. 1817--- do 1819--- do 1828---Henry Devereaux. 1845---Adam Mattice. 1852---Seymour Sornberger. 1855---Wilkeson Wilsey. 1860---John W. Couchman.
Giles H. Hubbard, appointed February 9, 1819. Adam Mattice, elected November, 1834.
COUNTY SCHOOL COMMISSIONER.
Nelson Rust, elected in 1837.BOUNDARIES.
By the act of 1813 the town of Broome was, after the towns of Blenheim, Middleburgh, Schoharie, Cobleskill, Carlisle and Sharon, Thus defined:--
" And all that part of the said County of Schoharie bounded on the north by Middleburgh, on the east and south by the bounds of the County, and on the west by Blenheim, shall be and continue a town by the name of Broome."