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Niagara Genealogy

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Go to Lincoln County Welland County -- Stamford Township -- Niagara Falls --Bios

JAMES E. ANGER, publisher and proprietor of the Niagara Falls Review, and Rev. William H. Anger, principal and originator of the St. Catharines Business College, are members of one of the oldest families in the county of Welland. Two brothers named Anger, (or Ahinger) came from Germany at an early date and settled at a place called Clobrock, N. Y. Both fought for the British Crown during the revolutionary war, and when General Washington finally triumphed, they, with the Nears (German, Neher) Hoffmans and other Loyalists, came to Canada, bringing with them what they could with ox teams. Augustus Anger settled near Dunnville ; John Charles Anger in Bertie, and had three sons, Augustus, John Charles and Frederick. The last named died a bachelor. Augustus married and has many descendants now living in the county. John Charles married Abigail Near in Bertie in 1787 - just one hundred years ago. In 1812, both John Charles and his eldest son took up arms in support of the British Government, and participated in the battle of Chippawa. The son, named Frederick, sho had located in Wisconsin, came to Canada to battle for the land and the flag of his fathers, returning after the war to Wisconsin. The old homestead was the farm now owned by John Miller, Bertie, on the Ridge road. Of the sons of J.C. Anger, all went west except William C. and Henry C. The former resided near Ridgeway, the latter, who was born in 1801, remained on the old homestead, willed him by his father, until his death in 1877. Of H.C. Anger's descendants, two sons and two daughters yet survive, James E. and William H., whose names head this sketch, and Mrs. E. Augustine, of Humberstone and Mrs. W. J. Brown of Port Robinson. James E. Anger started the Niagara Falls Review in 1879, and has succeeded in establishing a permanent and paying business. His wife is Martha, daughter of Thomas Spedding of Bertie. William H. Anger, after being associated with his brother in the publishing business at Niagara Falls for some years, started the Niagara Falls Business College, removing it to St. Catharines in 1885, and changing the name to suit the new location. The institution is rapidly winning a wide reputation for success and efficiency in fitting the young for the practical business of life. It is fitted with telegraphic, banking and other facilities. Mr. Anger is well qualified for the work he has undertaken, being a B. A. of Albert College. His wife is Hattie A., daughter of James S. Dell, Esq., of Willoughby.

CAPTAIN HIRAM BENDER. - As local genealogy is always appreciated, we give a brief outline of this family history back to about the middle of the last century, when Philip George Bender, a native of Germany, and his wife, who was born in Holland, emigrated to the state of New Jersey. There they lived until the time of the American revolutionary war, when they came to Canada, as U.E. Loyalists, with Butler's rangers. They took up lands at Niagara Falls, buying of the Indians their rights to fifteen hundred acres, but Mr. Bender only took out a patent from the Crown for four hundred. On this land he erected a log house, during the latter quarter of the eighteenth century. Subsequently he built a frame house - the first in the territory now comprising the county of Welland - which was burned in the war of 1812. These buildings stood in what is now the limits of the town of Niagara Falls, on the south side of the site of the present stone structure of Hiram Bender, the present owner, who is a descendant of the fourth generation from Philip G. John B., who was the son of Philip G., was born in New Jersey and received his education at the military school for children of soldiers, held at Lewiston. He has a family of five sons and six daughters, who attained their majority. Two of them, Alem, and Candace, the wife of Wm. Cropley, still survive. Philip, the father of our present subject, was born April 14th, 1802. He served in the was of 1812 as a teamster, and on one occasion tool a cannon from St. Davids to Burlington Heights with a yoke of oxen. He was a sargeant in a cavalry company during the rebellion of 1837 ; in 1847 he was made ensign ; in 1849, first cornet ; and on May 2nd, 1862, Lieut. -Col. In February, 1826, he married Elizabeth, a daughter of Nicholas and Jane (McLean) Misener, the former of German and the latter of Irish descent. The Misener family consisted of eight sons and four daughters, one of whom, the mother of our subject, was born Aug. 14th, 1805. Philip Bender was the father of ten children, six of whom are now living : Mary Ann, John, (deceased), Jane, William, (deceased), Ellen, (deceased), Margaret, Philip George, Hiram, John, Mira, (deceased). Hiram, our present subject, was born at Niagara Falls, received his education at the Drummondville grammar school, and afterwards attended the military college at Toronto, from which he graduated in 1867. He was appointed ensign in No. 1 company of the 44th battalion, and promoted to the second lieutenancy, and eventually became captain. During the Fenian invasion he served as a private in No. 2 company of the 19th battalion. For four years he occupied a seat in the county council as reeve of the town of Clifton. On Sept. 7th, 1879, he received an appoinment in H. M. customs at Niagara Falls, a position he still holds. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, also of the I.O.O.F., and of the A.O.U.W. Captain Bender is of a genial disposition and enjoys great popularity.

MORTON M. BUCKLEY, Esq., of Niagara Falls, was born in Lancashire, England, February 23rd, 1830. He came to Canada in 1861, and settled in the township of Stamford, where for six years he kept a grocery store. He then moved to Niagara Falls, and for thirteen years was proprietor of the Albion Hotel. In 1880 he retired from active pursuits and handed over his business to his sons. The father of our subject, Philip Buckley, was a cotton-spinner of Lancashire ; he died in his country. Mr. Buckley's mother, whose maiden name was Sarah Morton, is now living in the city of Philadelphia. Our subject married January 1st, 1852, Elizabeth Wood, a daughter of William S. Wood, who in 1832, the date of Mrs. Buckley's birth, kept the British Museum in Toronto. They had a family of thirteen children, three of whom are dead. The survivors are Philip M., William P., M.H., Charles A., George E., Victoria A., now wife of R.J. Wood, of Hamilton, Elizabeth A., Wright H., Arthur and Amelia. Of the sons five are in business in Niagara Falls. Philip M. is carrying on the gents' furnishing and cigar business, W. P. I` s the proprietor of the Albion Hotel, M.H. is dealer in fancy goods and pictures, Charles A., keeper of the billiard hall, and Geprge E., flour and feed merchant. Mr. Buckley was for a period of six years member of the school board, and for a like period assessor of the town of Niagara Falls. He is a member of the order of Chosen Friends, and he was some years ago an active member of the I.O.O.F., and was for several years elected as town councillor. The position he holds at present, as one of the largest property holders of the town, has been secured through his business abilities and untiring assiduity.

THOMAS BUTTERS, freight agent of the Grand Trunk Railway at Niagara Falls, was born in Dundee, Scotland, November 22nd, 1829. His parents were James and Jean (Anderson) Butters, both natives of Scotland. Our subject, who was educated in his native city and learned the trade of printer there, came to Canada in 1851, landing at Montreal. He followed his trade for about three years, working in Montreal, Brockville, Toronto and Hamilton. In May, 1854, he took a position on the Great Western Railway, now one of the divisions of the Grand Trunk, and has been in the employ of the company ever since. He removed to Windsor as cashier and freight agent for the G. W. R., where he was elected councillor of Niagara Falls, and in 1879 filled the mayor's chair. He was again elected mayor in 1885. In 1854 Mr. Butters was married to Mary, a daughter of William Wallace, of Dalkeith, Scotland. They have a family of six children, viz : Mary, Jean, Elizabeth, Anne, James, and Helen. The family are members of the Presbyterian church. Our subject is major in the 44th battalion, (retired); he has been chairman of the school board for seven years, and was president of the Mechanic's Institute from the time of its inception in 1878 until 1885. He is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen.

DANIEL RUPERT COSBY, for many years proprietor of the Canada Southern Hotel at Niagara Falls, Ont., was born Feb. 22nd, 1816, at Toronto, then known as Little York. His father, Fountain Cosby, who was a Virginian slave, was bought by the maternal grandfather of our subject, Mr. Sebastian, judge of the supreme court of Kentucky. Judge Sebastian made Fountain his groom. The Sebastians were a proud Spanish family, but the judge's daughter, Mary, loved her father's groom. An elopement was the result, the pair fleeing to Canada. They crossed the Detroit river at what was at that time known as French Village, now the city of Detroit. They arrived in Windsor and were there married on the 13th of June, 1809. They subsequently went to Little York, where their son, our present subject , was born. From Toronto the family moved to Kingston, where the parents died. Mr. Cosby has during most of his life been engaged in large hotels and on board steamboats in the capacity of a steward. While thus engaged he made several trips to South America. He also sailed on Lake Ontario for a number of years. He was for seventeen years steward at the International Hotel, Niagara Falls, N.Y. For six years he resided in Detroit, Mich. He started in business for himself at Niagara Falls in 1878, and kept one of the best conducted hotels to be found in the vicinity of Niagara Falls. He married in 1842, Elizabeth Collon, a native of New York State, but of German descent. She died October 18th, 1884. Mr. Cosby has four sons living, Albert, George, Daniel and Frederick.

HERMANUS CRYSLER, who died at Niagara Falls on the 2nd June, 1884, was born in 1795, and was of U.E. Loyalist stock, though of German descent. His father, John Crysler, and his grandfather, Baltus Crysler, came from Germany to America in 1768, settling in Schoharie, N. Y. During the revolutionary war, the Cryslers sided with the party of the United Empire, and on the triumph of the Revolution loyally sought a home under their beloved flag in Canada. His father also took a prominent part in the war of 1812, distinguishing himself for bravery at the battle of Queenston, where the gallant Brock lost his life, and on other occasions. The subject of this sketch, though then too young to bear arms, chafed to serve his country, and was detailed to team supplies to the forces. In 1825 he married Edna Cook, a granddaughter of Robert Cook, the pioneer settler elsewhere referred to in this department of our work. The union was blessed with a family of twelve children, none of whom grew up to the estate of manhood and womanhood. Mr. Crysler was the builder of the Clifton house. He took a prominent part in business, politics, and society, until the cares of advancing age called a halt. He was all his life a leading resident of Niagara Falls. In politics he was a Reformer. He died full of years, leaving a large number of descendants to mourn the loss.

JOHN FERGUSON, M.D., Niagara Falls, M. P. for Welland County, was born in the county of Middlesex, Ontario in the year 1839. He is descended from an Irish family of Scotch extraction, whose estates lay in Galway and Ayrshire. In 1660, James Ferguson, a younger son of the family, became possessed of a large property in the county of Cavan, Ireland, in which place he settled. His son Thomas and grandson Richard entered the army, the latter taking part in the troubles of 1743, as an officer of the King's Black Horse ( now the 7th Dragoon Guards) under the Duke of Cumberland. His grandfather, Henry F., held a commission in the Cavan militia, and took an active part in the Irish rebellion of 1798. This gentleman came to Canada in 1824, and settled in London Township. The father of our subject was John Ferguson, of Middlesex, who was a justice of the peace in that county. Dr. John Ferguson received his education at the London grammar school, and afterwards entered the medical department of Victoria College, Toronto, and was also a private student of the late Dr. Rolph. In 1864 he graduated M. D. From Victoria College, and then left for the city of New York and entered Bellevue hospital, under Austin Flint, M. D., and attended the hospital for wounded soldiers at Blackwell's Island. On his return to Canada he began practicing his profession, but after four year's practice he abandoned it and began contracting for public works. He built a portion of the New York and Oswego Midland Railway, and the Galt and Berlin Railway. He was also a member of a firm who built (from 1873 to 1877) six miles of the Welland Canal enlargement, and in company with Robert Mitchell constructed the larger portion of the Toronto Water Works. In company with H. C. Symmes he built and established the first wood pulp mill at Sherbrooke in the province of Quebec. Dr. F. has taken an active part in political contests as a Conservative, appearing in the fight in nearly every election since 1867. In that year he assisted , for seven months on the public platform, A. P. Macdonald, who was elected in West Middlesex ; John H. Munroe, who was elected in West Elgin ; also in the contests in Bothwell and North Middlesex. In 1871 he took an active part in South Waterloo election in the interest of Abraham Erb, who was the candidate of the late Sanfield Macdonald ministry. During 1873 he went throug South Waterloo delivering a number of vigorous, powerful and brilliant, speeches in behalf of Mr. Phin and the Conservative cause, and he took a similar course through North Wentwrth, Waterloo and West Middlesex, Mr. McKechnie profiting by his effective addresses. In 1882 he appeared on his own behalf before the electors of Welland, and received the reward of his ability, his integrity and zeal, in being chosen for parliament. He has since sat in the House of Commons, and he was very speedily looked upon as one of the clear-headed and solid members of that body. He is vigorous, ready and practical, and his judgement upon public questions is certain to be careful and sound. In 1887 he was re-elected for Welland by a largely increased majority. In 1879 and 1880 he travelled extensively through Ireland, England, Scotland, France, Germany, Switzerland and Italy. He married,in 1869, Miss Robinson, only daughter of the late William Robinson, who was the mayor of the town of Galt, and who contested the south riding of Waterloo in the Conservative interest against Jas. Cowen in 1863, and in that Reform constituency came within sixty-three votes of being elected. The fruit of the union is four children, three daughters and one son. The two eldest daughters died in 1874. The son is attending Upper Canada College, and is in his fifteenth year. In 1881 Dr. F. purchased a large fruit farm on the banks of the Niagara river, and upon the farm is the celebrated Whirlpool Rapids Park. We may add in conclusion that Dr. F. is not a parliamentary gladiator, but whenever the occasion demands he is ready, and gives his views with promptness, with point and with effect.

ANDREW GREGORY HILL, Esq., was born in the township of Clinton, on the county of Lincoln, in the province of Ontario, Canada, on the 23rd day of September, 1834. He was educated at Victoria College, Cobourg and graduated in Arts in 1860, and in Law, taking the degree of L.L.B., in 1861. He studied law with Richard Miller in St. Catharines, and afterwards with the late Hon. Adam Crooks in Toronto. He commenced the practice of his profession in St. Catharines in 1863, but in the fall of the same year moved to the town of Welland, and entered into a co-partnership with the late Warren Rock. Mr. Hill continued in business in Welland for upwards of ten years, during which time he was for several years a member of the high school board, and a member of the county board of education for the county of Welland. He was also reeve of the village for many years, and for a like number of years member of the county council. During his connection with county affairs he was largely instrumental in procuring the removal of the registry office from Fonthill to Welland. He took an active interest in the politics of the county and country, and in 1872 contested the county of Welland for the House of Commons, in the Reform interest, against the late Thomas C. Street, who had represented the county for many years, but was defeated. In April of 1874 he was appointed police magistrate for the town of Niagara Falls, under a special act to provide for the better government of that part of Ontario situated in the vicinity of Niagara Falls, which position he has held continuously since that date.

ALEXANDER LOGAN, was born in Inverness-shire, Scotland, August 31st, 1851. He is a true Highlander, his forefathers for many generations having lived in the same county. He was educated inthe public schools of his native country. At the age of fifteen he was engaged as assistant or pupil teacher in the village where his parents then resided, which profession he was engaged in for four years. Coming to Canada in 1871, he located at Niagara Falls, and shortly afterwards entered into commercial life. Was first elected a member of the town of Niagara Falls council in 1882, in which capacity he served until 1885, when he was defeated in a close contest for the mayoralty, but was more successful in January, 1886, being elected mayor by acclamation.

ZENAS BEACH LEWIS, Niagara Falls, was born in the county of Wentworth, May 6th, 1833. He is a son of James Lewis, who was born in Wentworth County in 1798, followed farming throughout life, and died in his native county at the age of eighty years. The mother of our subject, Elizabeth Corwin, a daughter of Benjamin and Penelope (Swayze) Corwin, traces her lineage to Capt. George Curwen, of Northampton, England, who came to America in 1638 and settled at Salem, Mass. He was descended from the ancient Curwen family of Workington, Cumberland, England, bringing over with him memorials of such descent, such as a crest with the Curwen arms &c. Before 1433 and back to 1140 the name was spelled Culwen. Hutchinson, in his History of Cumberland County, gives the records of this family back to the reign of Ethelred, about A. D. 870. The grandfather of Mr. Lewis on the paternal side was Levi Lewis, a native of New Jersey, but of Welsh descent, who came to Canada at an early period and settled on the borders of Lincoln and Wentworth counties, taking up lands in both. Mr. Lewis, the subject of this sketch, married Ellen P., a daughter of Dennis and Catharine (Lawrence) Palmer, natives of Canada, but of English descent. Mr. Palmer's father, in the early history of the county, was the subject of a thrilling experience. Pursuing his way on one occasion though the township of Pelham, he was overtaken by the memorable hurricane that passed through that township, and was so completely hemmed in by fallen timber, uprooted by the storm, that the neighbors had to chop a road to his horse before he could be extricated.

JAMES W. OLIVER, M. D., C. M., was born in Hawick, Roxboroughshire, Scotland, April 23rd, 1840. His parents were George and Wilhelmina (Telfer) Oliver. The family came to Canada in 1844, and settled in the township of Louth, county of Lincoln, where the father followed farming until his death in 1846. He left a family of six, of whom four are still living. William farms on the old homestead near St. Catharines. Beatrice is the wife of Robert S. Ness, of Minneapolis, and Georgina is married to E. Porter Adams, who resides near Queenston, Ont. Our subject was educated at the St. Catharines grammar school, and studied medicine under the late Dr. Mack, of St. Catharines, graduating at McGill University, Montreal. He began the practice of his profession at Niagara Falls in 1867, where he has resided ever since. He was married in 1872 to Elizabeth, daughter of the late William Leggett, Esq., collector of customs at Niagara Falls. Mrs. Oliver died in 1883. Dr. Oliver was gazetted assistant surgeon of the 44th battalion infantry in 1871, and surgeon in 1882. He served as a private in the 19th battalion at the Fenian raid in 1866. He is a member of the A.F. & A.M., and also of the I.O.O.F., the A.O.F., and the A.O.U.W. Dr. Oliver is one of the most successful and popular physicians and prominent citizens of the county.

WALTER W. WOODRUFF, postmaster at Niagara Falls, was born at Niagara Falls South, May 1st, 1836, and was educated at Montreal and at Upper Canada College, Toronto. He is a son of Joseph C. and Sarah (Shaw) Woodruff, grandson of Richard and Nancy (Clement) Woodruff, and great-grandson of Ezekial Woodruff, a native of Connecticut, who came to Canada at the time of the American revolutionary war as a U.E. Loyalist, and settled in the township of Stamford, where he taught school for a number of years, acted in the capacity of a conveyancer, and was clerk of the district in its early days. He was buried at St. Davids. His family consisted of three sons, Richard, Henry and William, and one daughter, Sarah, who married Judge De Veaux, the founder of De Veaux College, Niagara Falls, N.Y. Richard, the grandfather of our subject, took part in the war of 1812; had his house burned by the Indians, at St. Davids, and had to flee to Fonthill with his family to save their lives. He and william were members of the old Parliament of Canada, when Niagara was the capital. Richard's family were seven in number, viz : Joseph C., William, John, Samuel, Richard, Catharine and Margaret, the latter being the wife of Samuel Zimmerman, the railway magnate and banker who was killed at the Des Jardins railway disaster. The father of our subject, Joseph C., was born at St. Davids in 1808, and followed the mercantile business throughout life. His family of five children, two of whom are now dead, were G. W., W. W., T. W., R. W. and Sarah De Veaux, the last two deceased. Mr. Woodruff, the subject of this sketch , in 1862 moved to Niagara Falls, then Clifton, and was for thirteen years engaged in mercantile pursuits. He was appointed to the position of postmaster at Niagara Falls in January, 1868, and still holds office ; he was for five or six years treasurer for the town ; for about ten years a member of the town council, and from 1872 to 1879 was successively returned by the popular voice to fill the mayor's chair. Mr. W. married November 5th, 1861, Miss Sue Backinstose, of American parentage.


Graciously Transcribed by: Richard Hirst U.E.

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