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Fayette, Seneca Co., NY

Excerpts from Centennial Historical Sketch of Fayette, Seneca Co., NY 1800-1900 by Diedrich Willers [Press of W.F. Humphrey, Geneva, NY, 1900; reprinted by W.E. Morrison & Co., Ovid, NY, 1982]

As time permits (and with specific requests), I will transcribe sections of this book to appear on this page. Please contact Diane Lerch Kurtz if you would like to assist with transcriptions.

p. 28-33       "Among the settlers coming in soon after the organization of the town in 1800 were William Irland, Hon. Robert S. Rose, John Jolly, Peter Dey, Capt. Nathan Cook, Hugh McAllister, Darius Minor, Benjamin Tucker, Robert Gilliland, Enos Tooker, William Chathama, Roelof Peterson, Benjamin Moses, Henry Matthews, and families of Changerlin, Watkins, Hendricks, Henion, Marshall, Thomas, Huff, Lowden Dubois, Hicks, Leddick, Easton and many others, including a number of patriot soldiers of the Revolutionary War."

      "An important element in population in the early settlement of Fayette, and which still to a marked degree exercises great influence in the direction of its affairs, were the Pennsylvania German settlers of the town, the ancestors of whom came to this country from Germany and Switzerland, prior to the Revolutionary War, or just at its close, including some persons of Hugenot ancestry. Most of these settlers came to Fayette in the first quarter of this century, although there were some who settled later, and the greater number came from Northumberland, Lancaster, Cumberland, Dauaphin, Northampton, Bucks, Berks and Lehigh Counties in Pennsylvania. Samuel Bear, Martin Kendig, Jr., and the Yost brothers, already mentioned, were of Pennsylvania German ancestry."

      "Among the Pennsylvania-German families which settled in town for the first ten years of this century may, be mentioned the names of John and George Pontius, Jacob Riegel, Ludwig Stofflet, Christian Hoster, Anthony Houtz, Nicholas Deisinger, William Gamber, William Red, Frederick Rathfan, Henry Mauger, Henry Singer, Adam Hofstetter, John Markel, Jacob Alleman, George Bachman, John Emerick, Peter Whitmer, John Deppen, John and Jacob Frantz, Frederick Hassinger, George Shiley, Daniel Rhoad, Bartholomew Hittel, and the Kuney Brothers, with many others. A list of Pennsylvania German Settlers of Fayette, is published in a volume of "Notes and Queries," issued by Dr. W.H. Egle, State Librarian of Pennsylvania in 1898." [This list appears inan appendix to the book and is available here]

      "It is to be regretted that no system of registration of vital statistics existed in the early history of this locality."

      "Of early births within the territory of the present town of Fayette, the date of only a few has been obtained. As far as ascertained, the first male child born in town was George Coventry (son of Dr. Alexander), born August 24, 1792, who died at Utica, N.Y. , April 11, 1878. John Coventry, a brother, was born Feb. 12, 1796. Caroline Freeman, daughter of John Freeman, was the first female child born in town of whom any information is at hand. She was born Dec. 3, 1796, and became the wife of Davidson Mosher of Barrington, Yates, Co., N.Y."

"Other early births in town were:
John S. Bear, son of Samuel, born Sept. 3, 1797
Sophia Bear, daughter of Samuel, born Sept. 9, 1798
John Rorison, son of Alexander, born Aug. 30, 1798
John B. Kendig, son of Martin, Jr., born in 1798
A few births after the organization of Fayette, are added:
Jane VanRiper, daughter of Garry, born July 25, 1801
George Rumsey, son of John Jr., born Dec. 31, 1801
Timothy Rumsey, son of John Jr., born June 4, 1804
John Rumsey, son of David, born March 6, 1805
Daniel S. Kendig, son of Martin Jr., born Feb. 19, 1803
Sally Woodruff, daughter of Charles, born Nov. 4, 1804
William Yost, son of Casper, born Nov. 4, 1804
Chester Yost, son of Casper, born May 12, 1806
Mary Catlin, born in 1805
Jacob Peterson, born Oct. 23, 1806, died Dec. 1, 1895
John H. Tooker, born April 28, 1807, died April 19, 1895
Lewis Woodruff, born 1807, died 1883
John Lowdem, born March 17, 1807, died March 6, 1898
Jacob Gamber, born Oct. 26, 1808, died April 11, 1897
Children of Major Samuel Bear:
Launcelot Bear, born July 9, 1800
Charlotte Bear, born Jan. 18, 1803
Samuel Bear Jr., born June 27, 1807
Children of Alexander Rorison:
Nancy Rorison, born June 14, 1802
David B. Rorison, born April 24, 1804
Peter W. Rorison, born Nov. 30, 1806
Of early marriages, those ascertained are:
Martin Kendig, Jr. to Leah Bear, in 1797
Job Smith to Marian Gorham, in 1799
William B. Hall to Rebecca Boardman, date not ascertained
James Hugg to Jerusha Boardman, Sept. 15, 1804
Daniel Tooker to Sarah Boardman, Nov. 24, 1804
Henry Mauger to Maria Pontius, Feb. 4, 1860"

      "The Docket of Alexander Rorison, a justice of the peace, in Fayette 1802 to 1804, shows an entry of eleven marriages performed by him during that period. Some of the married couples residing in other localities, and the following, known to have been residents of the town, to wit:
Casper Yost to Rachel Edington, Aug. 22, 1802
Samuel Buchanan to Peggy Trotter, 1802
John Bear to Jean Rathfang, Jan. 9, 1803
William Penoyer to Barbara Yost, April 28, 1803
David Lay to Catharine Jolly, Sept. 28, 1803"

      "Of early deaths, very few have been ascertained (none of the cemeteries in town containing head-stones with inscriptions dated prior to 1805), to wit:
Betty, a negro slave of Dr. Alexander Coventry, died at his farm at Seneca Lake, of pulmonary consumption, June 19, 1793. leaving two daughtes. She was tenderly cared for by the doctor and his ramily, and her remains carefully enshrouded and placed in a coffin were interred upon his farm, as noted in his journal
John S. Bear, died Sept. 4, 1797, aged one day
Elizabeth Boardman, died Sept. 22, 1801, aged 14 years
Elizabeth Phelps, wife of Elisha, died Feb. 21, 1805, aged 53 years
Rebecca Roardman Hall, wife of Wm. B., died Aug. 12, 1805, aged 22 years
Nancy Rorison, died Nov. 10, 1807
Guain McConnell, died in 1807
Samuel Bear, died Sept. 25, 1807
Sophia Bear, died Oct. 23, 1807"

      "The elevated location of Fayette, between two beautiful lakes, and most of its northern boundary being formed by a river, affords ample drainage. The few marshes existing at an early day, have largely disappeared, with other causes tending to induce malaria, and the temperature and climate in winter is favorably modified by proximity to the lakes. These causes doug\btless tend to promote longevity in this and adjoining towns of which there have been some notable instances of persons born in, or who were for a time residents in this town."

      "Arazina Come Gleming, daughter of Timothy Cone and Mary Gorham (daughter of Jabez Gorham), was born in the town of Romulus, Oct. 9, 1794. Her first husband, John Leddick, of Fayette, a soldier in the war of 1812, son of Philip Leddick, died in the year 1823. In 1826 she married Robert Fleming of Romulus, who died in Feb. 1858. Soon after his death she removed to South Waterloo where she resided until her decease Sept. 21, 1898, in the 104th year of her age."

      "Mrs. Orwan (mother of Mrs. John Lowden, Sr.), a native of Germany, who resided with her daughter in Fayette, lived to the age of one hundred years and four months, and died there 70 to 75 years ago."

      "The age of John Jolly, a pioneer settler in West Fayette in 1800, and who died there in the decade betweebn 1820 and 1830, is variously stated as from 103 to 107 years of age."

      "John Widner, son of Leonard Widner, the early ferryman at the Seneca outlet at the northwest corner of Fayette, and who lived a number of years at Rose Hill, died at Rochester, N.Y., April 27th, 1880, in the 101st year of his age."

      "Other instances of longevity may be mentioned, to wit: Mrs. Jane Hinkley, daughter of Garry Van Riper, born in Fayette July 25, 1801, married Bradford Hinckley and died in Varick, N.Y., Aug. 25, 1898; James McClung died in 1839, aged 95 years; William Chatham died in 1854, aged 96 years; Henry Moses died in 1880, aged 96 years; Reuben Lutz died in 1896, in his 96th year; Frederick Schott died in 1858, aged 93 years."

      "Michael Hoster, son of Christian, born in Northumberland County, PA, in 1802 and removed with his parents to Fayette in 1803, where he resided during the greater part of his life, died in Seneca Falls NOv. 13, 1895, in his 94th year.

      "Charles L. Hoskins, for many years a resident in Fayette, died in Seneca Falls April 17, 1897, in his 98th year."

      "Solomon Acker, a native of Pennsylvania, who located in Fayette in 1825, and resided there many years, died in Varick, July 1, 1895, aged 93 years.

      "John Lowden, son of John Lowden, Sr., forn in Fayette July 25, 1807, died in Wterloo March 6, 1898.

      "Mrs. Margaret Brickley, daughter of Henry Kuney, forn in Fayette in 1808, died there March 4, 1899. {See also Biographical Sketches of Benjamin Woodruff and of Daniel H. Bryant.)

      "There are living at this time, several present or former residents of the town over ninety years of age, among whom may be mentioned:
Mrs. Hannah Pierson, widow of Simeon, born in New Jersey March 20, 1806
Peter Kohler, born in Pennsylvania April 24, 1807
Esther Biery Kohler, his wife, born in Pennsylvania Aug. 16, 1808. [Addenda and Corrections page notes that Esther Biery Kohler died in Fayette, Dec. 16, 1899]
William Kuney, born in Pennsylvania April 14, 1808
Mrs. Elizabeth Riegel, widow of William, born in Fayette May 9, 1808
Samuel Leddick, born in Seneca County, NY, Jan. 13, 1809, son of the Revolutionary War soldier, Philip Leddick"


A large part of this book contains biographical sketches. The biographical sketches that are transcribed are available at Index to Biographies, Seneca Co., NY.
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