BY JOHN S. MINARD.
GRANGER is the central northern town of the county. It contains 20,450 acres and
was originally a part of the Morris Reserve, it formed a part of the town of Leicester, then of Angelica, from
Feb. 25, 1805 to March 11, 1808, then until March 8, 1827, it formed a part of Nunda. From 1827 to April 18, 1838,
it was a part of Grove, was then set off from Grove, as West Grove, retaining that name until March 6, 1839, then
changed to Granger. A meeting was held at Short Tract at which a change of name was considered, and Perth Amboy
and Pine Grove were spoken of but at the suggestion of Wm. Van Nostrand, it was named for Francis Granger, of Canandaigua,
then postmaster general. Its territory is made up of the southeast part of the Cottringer Tract, lots 236 to 279
inclusive, and such part of the Church Tract, as was called P 6, excepting that part of lot 1, which lies west
of the Genesee river. Its population was greatest in 1860 when it had 1,257, in 1870, it was 1,050; in 1880, 1,086;
in 1890, 954, in 1892, 909. It is bounded on the north by the town of Portage, Liv. Co., east by Grove, south by
Allen, and west by Hume, the Genesee river forming more than half of its western boundary. Its waters are all tributary
to the Genesee, mostly finding their way to the river through Rush creek, the only stream in the town which has
a name. The Indians called it Shonnety-ye, a name of no apparent particular local significance nor can I find it,
in what purports to be a list of "Indian names in New York." Who gave the name of Rush creek is not known.
Elisha Johnson calls it so in his field notes in 1807, as does Van Campen in 1810. The name probably came from
the luxuriant growth of rushes in the stream. In times of heavy rainfall its waters come rushing down the valley
brooking no delay. It is then pre-eminently Rush creek.
"Short Tract," the name applied to a large part of the town, particularly to the territory through which
the main central road runs from north to south, comes from Wm. Short the mortgagee and later owner of a part of
the Church Tract. This is also the name of the postoffice on the Short Tract road, in the south part of the town.
Granger postoffice is on the same road in the north part of the town, while East Granger is on the State Road in
the east part of the town.
The surface of Granger is generally a hilly upland, thrown into ridges conforming to the course of Rush creek,
which has its source in the northeast part of the town, and pursues a southwest course to a point about a mile
and a half east of the southwest corner, where it enters Allen. Returning in a northwest direction it cuts off
a small part of the southwest lot, and enters Hunie. These ridges are transversely, though quite irregularly cut
up by the tributaries of Rush creek and the river, which have worn deep gorges or ravines, making a marked topographical
feature of the town. Scarce any fiats exist along the river which is bordered by abrupt hills which rise to heights
in some places of from 400 to 600 feet.
The part of the town embraced in the Cottringer Tract was surveyed into lots in 1807 by Elisha Johnson, afterward
mayor of Rochester, and the land of the Church Tract was subdivided in 1810 by Van Campen. Neither make mention
of finding squatters or Indian huts or villages in the territory. Most of Granger was originally covered with a
good quality of pine, while hemlock in large quantities was found in some parts. Oak, chestnut, beech, and maple
were the other prevailing timbers. It is pre-eminently an inland town, no other road than the highway ever having
been constructed within its limits. Its soil upon the hills is a clayey loam, and in the valley it is quite gravelly.
It is better adapted to grazing than to crops, and the prevailing industry is dairying. It is especially adapted
to shee.p husbandry, and when the price of wool warrants it, large numbers of sheep are kept. No saloon or hotel
has existence in town nor has had for some years past. Its people as a rule are industrious, thrifty, happy and
The first settlement was made on the Short Tract in February, 1816, by Reuben Smith, his sons, Wilcox and Isaac,
his sons-in-law, Rufus Trumbull and James McCoon, A Mr. Ellis from Vermont, and Elias Smith from Otsego county
in the south part of the town, Elias Smith locating where O. A. Fuller now lives. The late Hiram Smith stated that
his father. Darling Smith, also from Otsego county, came about 1816 took a contract for 50 acres in the northeast
part, building his own house, and sleeping in it the first night after it was up. For a time his nearest neighbor
on the north was three miles distant, and on the south seven. Ira Hopper from Steuben settled in the south part
about 1816, and Wm. White from New England settled near the center in 1818.
In March, 1817, Olive Smith, the first white child in town was born. As to the first death in town one account
states that Olive Linee was the first one to die, in 1817. According to William Van Nostrand a negro named Jaques
was the first to die, (in 1817). He was buried on lot 20, and two years later re-interred in a burial ground near
by. The first marriage was in the spring of 1821, Isaac Hatch and Clarissa Pratt being the parties.
About 1818 Solomon Rathbun of Saratoga county, made an exploration of Western New York and passed through the Church
Tract. He was impressed with the magnificent growth of pine near the Short Tract Road. His description of the country
and its advantages encouraged Isaac Van Nostrand to visit the Church Tract in 1819. He purchased 290 acres of lot
20, and erected a log cabin, and lived alone until he could make a home for his family. During the summer he built
the first sawmill in Granger, nearly a mile west of the Short Tract Road. He went seven miles to procure help to
raise it, and some of the Caneadea Indians assisted. The timbers were heavyand in raising one of the "bents,"
some faint-hearted ones came near releasing their hold to the peril of all their lives. Van Nostrand seized a handspike
and threatened direst vengeance on any one that did not do his utmost. Giving thundering command, "He-o-heave,"
all lifted with a will and up went the bent into place. William Moore and Isaac Hatch were associated with Van
Nostrand in building the mill which was soon running. Logs were cut and sawed into lumber out of which the next
year Van Nostrand built the first framed house in the town, in which he installed his wife and five children, he
returning to Milton to bring them. His son Luzon had come the May before. They left Milton in August and were a
week on the road.
Isaac Hatch and Mr. Van Nostrand, both good mechanics, were associated in building many of the early framed houses.
For some time Mr.. Van Nostrand had the only time piece and it was arranged that he should blow upon a conch shell
at four o'clock in the morning, at noon, and at nine o'clock P. M. It has been claimed that that conch shell has
been heard seven miles. It is now the property of Luzon Van Nostrand. Isaac Van Nostrand was a leading spirit with
great influence among the settlers. He was the town's first supervisor, had been supervisor of Grove before the
erection of Granger, and was foremost in all public enterprises.
Thomas Worden from Massachusetts, and Samuel Horton from Canandaigua made a settlement in the central part about
1819-20, also Oliver Smith. Charles Abbott purchased land on lot 37. James Osman and Jonathan Allen on lot 28.
John Wheeler from Vermont about 1819 settled on lot 247, on the river. He came to be prominent in town and county
politics, served several terms as supervisor, was long justice of the peace and justice of sessions, was member
of assembly, and thoroughly identified and conversant with public affairs. Curtis Coe and John Broughton from Cayuga
county settled in the northeast part on the State Road. Joel Pratt and Ebenezer Baich came from White Hall, Washington
county, and settled near Short Tract on. lot 21 in 1819.
The first school meeting was held May 21, 1819, when it was resolved to build a schoolhouse of logs, 22 feet long
(how wide?) it to be ready for use by June 20, 1819. The first school was taught by Miss Arzivffla Wiffiams the
same season. Isaac Van Ostrand and Elias Smith were foremost in this work. Elias Smith kept the first inn at Short
Tract in 1819. Also the first store at the same place the next year. This pioneer inn was a log structure. The
venerable Luzon Van Ostrand of Allen is authority for many statements here recorded. ELias Smith bought many shingles
at 50 cents per thousand and paid in whiskey. He would allow Coan Horton only three shillings for one bunch. This
so offended Horton that he took them out in the road, broke them open and burned them. Sometime in the twenties
Mr. Patterson lost a little girl, who wandered too far into the woods. The news spread rapidly and everybody turned
out to hunt for her. The understanding was that a gun should be fired or a horn blown when the child was found,
and that no one should fire, not even at a deer. The hunt was prosecuted all night and next day she was found.
Anxiety gave way to great rejoicing, guns were fired, horns blown and bells rung.
Hunt had a store and ashery at Hunt's Hollow. Pete Holliday took a bag of ashes there on his back, and asked if
they had any shilling pocket knives? He was answered "Yes." "How much do you ask for them?"
In an early year the people arranged for a Fourth of July celebration. Jehial Smith wanted to go with his "girl,"
and cut four cords of "four-foot" wood for 50 cents, got the money and went and took his girl too! Think
of that, young men of to-day, when you are repining and "taking on" over your hard lot! You haven't taken
the first lesson in hard times.
In 1820 Ephraim Bullock, a young cooper from Vermont, came and was the first one in town. He was long and favorably
known. He married Electa White in 1821 (the second marriage of the town), and in 1822 bought quite a tract of land
on lot 20, nearly all of which he cleared. He later traded lands with Isaac Van Ostrand.
John Bellows, Philetus Reynolds and Charles Mifis settled in the southeastern part in 1820 as did Rufus Shepard
and Darius Scoville, on the State Road in the eastern part. Before the close of 1820 Willard Moore from Saratoga
county settled on lot 20. Mr. Moore and Joel Pratt built the first framed barns. In 1822 Samuel Moses from Lima,
N. Y., settled in the northeastern part. Abner Comstock came in January, 1823, and bought 40 acres of land, which
he cleared, and put up a log house. He did his full share in the development of this section. He cut seven miles
of the road to Nunda, and his name often appears in the town records. Enos Baldwin, who died in 1876, is well remembered
by Granger people. He came from Mt. Morris in 1823 and took up a farm at Short Tract, where he ever after resided.
He was for some years a captain in the militia, was justice 32 years and held various offices. His son, G. W. Baldwin,
is a well-known resident. Samuel C., son of John C. Jones, settled on the State Road at an early day. He was quite
prominent in town affairs. During 1823 Ira Parker, from Scipio, Cayuga county, settled on the old state road, making
an opening and erecting a log house. 'Manning Hardy located on lot 264 in January, 1823, and during the same year
Solomon Crofoot, Peleg Sweet and Samuel Hurd settled on lot 13, and Stephen Spencer made a beginning in the southeast
part of the town. This year also Daniel Moses settled on lot 263 on the old Church road, taking up 50 acres, erecting
the regulation log cabin, to which he soon brought his family. He came from Lima, Livingston Co., and attained
and retained until his death in 1867, considerable prominence in. the town. His sons, Washington and Aziza, have
been quite conspicuous in town and county affairs.
The first framed schoolhouse was put up in 1824 by Isaac Van Nostrand, Isaac Hatch, Elias Smith, and others. It
occupied substantially the same site as the present very creditable structure on the Short Tract road. Enoch Holliday
and his family (Harlow Holliday, his son, is still living in the town) made their advent into Granger in 1826,
first buying of Norman Canfield 50 acres on Oak Hill. Marmaduke Aldrich, Horace Doane. Salmon Remington and Abraham
Lampman settled here from 1826 to 1829. Among the settlers of 1830 were James Wilcox. William L. Weaver, William
Ralph, John Bennett and William Pitt.
Mr. Pitt came from England, purchased 140 acres, made a pleasant home, and became a leading citizen, at various
times being assessor, town clerk and highway commissioner. His wife died in 1873. One of their ten children, Prof.
Wm. H. Pitt, has attained fame as-a scientist. Lieut. Geo. W. Pitt of the 85th N. Y., and John S. Pitt of the 104th
N. Y.. were their sons.
Our prominent citizen, William Weaver, now living in Angelica, is a son of William L. Weaver above mentioned.
Mr. Jesse Bennett. late of Hume, where he is now justice of the peace, is a son of John Bennett, the pioneer.
Dr. Reuben. H. Smith from New Jersey, settled in the north part of the town in 1828. In addition to his medical
practice, he practiced surveying for several years. His son, Dr. Wm. M. Smith, became very prominent. (See page
219.) His grandson, Frank S. Smith, son of Dr. Wm. M., is now a reputable member of the New York City bar. (See
In 1831 William and Henry Bennett, from England, accompanied by their families, took up 240 acres, and worked about
the neighborhood until they had paid for it
Montgomery Thorp was early a settler at the Short Tract. He reared a family of much more than ordinary ability
and accomplishments. Simeon M. became state superintendent of public instruction of Kansas. He was a prominent
Free State" and Union man, and was shot dead in his own door yard in one of the famous Quantrell raids. He
was then state senator. Capt. Alexander K., another son, an Union officer, was shot in the battle of Winchester.
His remains were interred in the cemetery at Short Tract. Thomas J., another son, had just graduated from Union
College when the war broke out. He helped organize the 85th New York and was commissioned captain of Co. E. He
was wounded at Fair Oaks but gallantly endured the sufferings of the great Seven Days historic retreat. He was
commissioned lieutenant-colonel of the 130th N. Y. (1st N. Y. Dragoons) while on furlough. He achieved high distinction
with that regiment, and was promoted colonel March 1, 1865. After the war he was prominent in educational matters.
and is now a resident of Oregon.
Gen. Thorp erected an elegant "soldiers' monument" in Granger. This is a beautiful shaft of granite 25
feet high, on which is inscribed the honorable record of his family and immediate relatives, and also the names
of Granger's other heroes of the Civil War. One side of the monument is dedicated to 'The brave soldiers of C-ranger
who fell for the Union." Their names are: G. H. Cole, F. M. Cook, Wm. Hall, C. P. Emery, Wm. Dayis, Wm. Huson.
E. S. Drury, N. J. Smith, M. W. Snider, G. T. Warden, G. W. Abbott, M. D. Luther, J. D. Weaver, I. R. Weaver, E.
M. Parker, J. M. Parker. Wm. Wallace. Wm. Whittle, John Parks, J. H. Bennett, Wm. Bentley, Geo. Shepard, John Emmons,
Geo. Sibbald, Jos. Bentley. Eber Bullock, Richard Grove, Daniel Chilson, Luther Moses, Pembroke Berry, Charles
Williams, Darius Snider, Robert T. Lockwood, David Lockwood, Attorney Smith, I. N. Van Nostrand, Aaron Van Nostrand.
On the north side appears "Gen. Thos. J. Thorp, son of M. Thorp, born 1833, died ____. Mandana C. wife of
T. J. Thorp, born 1843, ____. Simeon A. son, born 1867. Emma L. died 1870. Anna, daughter, born 1871." On
the south side appears: "Lynes Thorp, a Patriot soldier of 1776. Montgomery Thorp, son of the Patriot, born
at Bristol, Conn., 1796. Wrn. Jones a Patriot soldier of 1776. John O. Jones, son of the Patriot. born 1780, died
1827. Bethiah, wife of Montgomery Thorp, and daughter of John C. Jones, born 1807. Louisa Thorp, born 1833, died
1836. Ann Thorp, born 1842, died 1847." The only expense to the town or friends of the honored dead was that
of carving the inscription.
On what is known as "Snyder Hill," a widow by the name of Swan was the first settler early in the thirties.
Ezra Bottsford, Benjamin and Rudolph Snyder, Storey Curtis and Azariah Townsend were early settlers, also Hiram
Tuttle at a later period. After there was quite a settlement on the Short Tract, the territory west of it to the
river in Hume was an unbroken wilderness. The names given to (and still retained by) the different sections or
settlements were State Road, Short Tract, Weaver Settlement, Horton Hill and Snyder Hill.
In. 1834 Luzon and Lewis Van Nostrand, William Morse and John White built a gristmill on lot 35. Two "run"
of stone. 24 inches in diameter, were put in. Afterward a "four-foot run " obtained at Auburn was added.
A man was hired to run the mifi, and Luzon learned of him and afterward ran it. This mill was put up before any
roads were laid out in its immediate vicinity. Roads were soon opened, and the mill for some years was quite a
central place, but it was abandoned some thirty years ago and nothing but ruins mark the spot where it stood. There
is no gristmill in the town now. Calvin B. Lawrence put in the first steam sawmill in town on either lot 257 or
258 of the Cottringer Tract sometime in the forties.
The settlement of Granger was made between 1816 and 1840, and since the latter date, but little land has been cleared.
The wooded lands should not be further encroached upon, but carefully preserved. The pressing need of the pioneer
was cleared ground upon which to raise crops for the subsistence of his family and stock, and so clearing land
was the principal business of the settlers. The ashes were sold or worked up into black salts," which found
a ready market, and brought in about the only money that came into town for the first few years.
Braiding palm-leaf hats was an industry which some of the wives and daughters of the settlers from 1830 to 1850
engaged in. Merchants would bring in a stock of palm leaves, and sell them to the hat braiders (and some very good
hats they made), they at the same time purchased groceries and such other articles as were needed in the plainly
The first cheese factory was built by John Barnes. It was in the south part of the town on the cross road between
the Short Tract and State Road. After a few years it was abandoned. At present there are two cheese factories in
town, one on the Short Tract, owned by Young & Young of Fillmore, the other on the State Road in the northeast
part of the town, owned by Charles and Ed. Newsbickle. There are five blacksmith shops run respectively by Lawrence
Fletcher, Charles White, Fred Bennett, Alfred Bennett, and Lewis Wright, all strung along on the Short Tract road.
Dr. Reuben H. Smith. the first physician, lived on Horton Hill. He was succeeded by his son Dr. Wm. M., followed
by Drs. Fenno, Mifier, Hungerford, A. W. Smith and C. G. Anderson. At present the physicians are Drs. Geo. P. St.
John and C. A. Doolittle. Capt. Isaac Van Nostrand owned a "turnkey" and extracted teeth for the settlers
even before there was a physician.
Elias Smith, the first merchant, also kept an inn. It is supposed that both inn and store were in the same building
which was lately the residence of O. A. Fuller. Joseph Platt, the second merchant, in connection with his store
carried on an extensive lumber business. He afterward removed to .Angelica. Geo. Ayrault, now of Silver Springs,
Jesse Bennett, now at Rossburg, Lowell & Saxton, A. Butler. Wm. Welstead, J. R. Collister, John Wilcox and
Robt. Bennett have kept stores at the Short Tract. The only store ever kept on Horton Hill was owned by the Atwood
brothers, Philip and Freeman. George and Fred Reynold have carried on the harness trade, while Mr. Parsons, Charles
Aldrich. and Lowell & Augustine have dealt in flour and feed.
Granger had the credit of having a prominent station on the famous "underground railroad "of the old
anti-slavery days, when many fugitives bound for Canada made their way through this section. Rev. A. Richmond was
said to be the agent. John Broughton and Dr. Reuben H. Smith were early surveyers, John Waibridge a later one.
John Backus was the first postmaster at "Church Tract" office located on the State Road. Elias Smith
was the first postmaster at Short Tract, about 1824. "Hickory Swale" was an early postoffice in the north
part of the town. It was moved further south and changed to Granger. Previous to the establishment of these offices
Nunda and Mt. Morris offices supplied the people.
From the Town Records.- At the first
town meeting (March 5. 1839) these officers were elected: Isaac Van Nostrand, supervisor; Samuel C. Jones, town
clerk; John L. Johnson, collector; Rufus Shepard, William Pitt and Salmon Remington. assessors; Moses White and
Hosea Haskins, overseers of the poor; Rudolph Snider, Orville Hitchings and William L. Weaver, commissioners of
highways; Thomas Kinne, Ephraim Bullock and Reuben H. Smith, commissioners of common schools; P. B. Richmond, Luzon
Van Nostrand and Silas Olney, inspectors of schools; John L. Johnson, Forbes H. Oliver and John Utter, constables.
It was voted to raise $20 for highways, "to pay a bounty of $10 for old, and $5 for young wolves, 50 cents
for old and 25 cents for young foxes, and 50 cents for wildcats killed by the inhabitants of the town." From
this it seems that neither wolves nor wildcats had disappeared as late as 1839. In 1841 no road money was appropriated.
In 1843 a bounty of one shffling on crows was voted. In 1844 it was voted to raise no school money, but that all
penalties and forfeitures and money in supervisor's hands should be devoted to schools. In 1846 bounty on foxes
and crows was removed, and cattle and sheep made free commoners. At this town meeting 92 voted for license and
103 for no license.
When cattle and sheep were free commoners, stock was allowed to run at large, and sheep were marked by cutting
and slitting their ears in various ways, and a record made in a book kept by the town clerk. The first ear mark
recorded was that of Enos Baldwin, March 12, 1839, and the last Frederick Smith's, June 21, 1858.
During the Civil War special town meetings became necessary. One was held March 19. 1864, when it was voted "to
pay a bounty of $300 to those soldiers in the 85th and 104th regiments who re-enlist, and the same for volunteers."
During the pendency of a draft in 1864 a special town meeting was held August 9th. and it was voted that "the
town auditors be authorized to ifil the quota on the best terms obtainable." Jan. 10, 1865, at another special
town meeting it was voted to pay $600 for one year, $700 for two years, and $800 for three years' men to fill the
town quota. This was the last special town meeting called to consider war matters. The town of C-ranger did well
her part in that sanguinary struggle. Many of her noble sons gave up their lives that the government might survive,
and no town in the county has a more honorable record or furnished better soldiers.
Religion.- The first religious
services were conducted at the house of Elias Smith by Rev. Mr. Hill. The Methodist Episcopal society was organized
in 1826 by the first pastor. Meetings were held in private houses and the schoolhouse. The first church edifice
was erected in 1841. and in 1863, under the labors of Rev. Mr. Bush, it was refitted and enlarged to seat 300 people.
In 1877, under Rev. J. C. Stephens, it was again enlarged. The property is worth about $6,000. The ministers have
been: Rev. Deway, William Gage, G. Gould. Asa Orcult, Henry Wisner, Asa Story, Mr. Brunson, John Watson, Chandler
Wheeler, Joseph Pearsall. Mr. Pickard, Mr. Ferguson, Mr. Anderson, A. Maker. William Haskell, Mr. Wright, Mr. Cornels,
C. Gool. Milo Scott, Ralph Clapp, L. L. Rogers, Stephen Brown, H. Huntington, James Duncan, Mr. Bush. W. N. Shulp,
F. M. Smith. P. D. Clark, V. Brownell, J. B. Peck. S. D. Pickett. A. H. Maryot. John Spinks, R. F. Kay, T. J. O.
Wooden, J. C. Stephens. Isaac Harris, G. S. Watson. A. W. Staple, H. L. Newton, W. Magavern, Cornelius Dillenbeck,
C. L. Fish, N. J. Brown, E. L. Graves, A. F. Countryman, J. E. Munroe and E. E. Warner. The church membership is
140 and the Sunday school has 180 members.
Rev. John Watson organized the First Wesleyan Church of Granger in. 1843. In. 1844 a church building was erected
at a cost of $500 capable of seating about 150 persons. It was valued in 1879 at $1,200. Some improvements h&ve
been made since. Rev. George W. Cooper is pastor.
Maple Grove Lodge, No. 761, F. A. M., was instituted March 5, 1875. The first officers were: W. M., George S. Goldstone;
S. W., DeWitt C. Albee; J. W., Jonas B. Collister; treas., Washington Moses; see., Rev. A. H. Maryott; S. D., James
Douglas; J. D., John Wilcox; tiler, Silas Brundage. The present W. M. is John A. Jones. The other masters of this
lodge have been Jasper N. Parker and Samuel B. Luckey.
A Lodge of the Junior Order of United American Workmen, the A. & I. Van Nostrand Post of the G. A. R. and the
W. R. C. are other societies existing here.
Supervisors.- Isaac Van Nostrand, 1839, '42; Abner Bissell, 1840; ; Joseph Platt, 1841 ; Wm.
Van Nostrand, 1843, '44, '48, '49, '58, '65; S. C. Jones, 1845, '46, '47; John Wheeler, 1850,
'51, '57, '59; Lewis Van Nostrand, 1852, '53; Wm. R. Toby, 1854, '55; Wm. M. Smith, 1856;
Asa N. White, 1860, Washington Moses, 1861, '62, '67, '68, '69; O. Olney, 1863, '64; Geo. W.
Pitt, 1866; Wm. Weaver, 1870, '71, '77, '78; John N. Phinney, 1872, '73. '76, '83, '84; Gurdon
H. White, 1880, '90, '91; ; Andrew W. Smith, 1885, '86; John Walbridge, 1887; Robert Bennett, 1888, '89; John L.
Dudley, 1892, '93; V. Q. Smith, 1894, '95.
The 1895 officers are: supervisor, V. Q. Smith; town clerk, Robert Bennett; justices, S. B. Lucky, Frank Ricketts,
V. Q. Smith, Clark Eldridge; overseer of poor, David Wallace; assessors, Ernest Cuddebee, O. A. Fuller, J. N. Parker;
collector, Charles Snyder; constables, D. F. Bennett. J. J. Galton, Charles Snyder, Thomas Hall. Charles Bates;
inspectors of election, Frank K. Allen, John Hussong, Arthur J. Bennett, Joseph N. Guptil; excise commissioners,
L. D. Bennett, Arthur Main, John Sylor.
CHRONOLOGY OF SOME CITIZENS.-
Alonzo Aldrich is grandson of Marmaduke Aldrich a soldier in the war of 1812, who came to Lima. Livingston county,
in 1820 from New Hampshire, to Grove in 1822, to Granger in 1827; children, Amasa, Gideon, Nelson, Benjamin, Sally
and Mary. Amasa married Zeruah Parker, children Marilla, Linus P., Alonzo, Arvilla and Melissa. Aloozo was born
in 1836, and has always been a farmer owning now 200 acres. He married Marinda Waite of Belfast, children, Amasa,
a farmer in Granger, and Charles, who died at Short Tract in 1894 aged 24 years. Alonzo Aldrich enlisted in 1863
in Co. D, 4th N. Y. H. Art, which served as infantry. He was in the battles of the Wilderness, Spottsylvania, Cold
Harbor, Petersburg, South Side Railroad, Burkes Station, and was present at Lee's surrender at Appomattox. Mrs.
Aldrich died in 1892. Mr. Aldrich, always an active Republican, has been highway commissioner of Granger, and for
many years a dealer in live stock.
Ira Bentley is son of Gideon Bentley, who lived in Onondaga county. and married Polly Harrington. Children, Rua,
Weighty, Lucy, David, Callop, Stephen and Ira. Ira Bentley was born in 1813, and married in Yates county, Mary
Hall. Children, Ira, Stephen, William. Floyd, Emma, Jeanette, Mary E. and Filena. Mr. Bentley came to Granger in
1826 and paid $6 per acre for his first 50 acres of land. To these he added till he owned 700 acres. His first
wife died and his second wife was Emma Dunn. Children, Floyd and Arthur. His son, Ira, who lives on the old homestead,
married a Miss Randall. They have two children, Fred and Emma.
Robert Bennett merchant at Short Tract, was born in Granger in 1839, son of Joseph Bennett, born in England
in 1813, the son of Henry Bennett. Joseph Bennett came to Granger in 1831 and bought what is now the John Bennett
farm for SI.25 per acre. He married in 1833 Eliza, daughter of Robert Jemmison of York, Livingston county. They
had eight children, Betsey dying at the age of 3 months, Robert, merchant at Short Tract, Mary C. (Mrs. Washington
Waibridge) living in Granger, Sarah J. (Mrs. Joseph Wilcox) who died in 1877, John J., living on the old farm,
Hugh who died in 1878, Francis who died at the age of 2 years, Helen (Mrs. John Hussong) who lives at Short Tract.
Joseph and Eliza Bennett both died in 1884, on the 13th and 19th of April. In 1861 Robert became a partner in the
firm of Wilcox & Bennett, grist, saw and shinglemill, which burned with no insurance the same year. In 1862
he enlisted in Co. H, 130th N. Y. This regiment was changed to cavalry and was called 1st N. Y. Dragoons and served
under Gen. Phil. Sheridan and was in 46 actions including the Wilderness, Winchester, Cold Harbor and Cedar Creek.
After 35 months' service, Mr. Bennett came home and worked in gristmills at Whitesville and Canaseraga three years
and on his farm on English Hill five years. In 1874 he began business as a trader at Short Tract. The firm was
then Collister & Bennett for three years, then Bennett & Eldredge two years, the firm adding drugs to the
"general store" line of goods. Mr. Eldredge went to Livonia some years ago and since then Mr. Bennett
has had no partner. In 1866 he married Jane McAllister of York. Children, Lida J. died at the age of 20 in 1889,
Lena and Flora M., living at home, and Ethel, who died at the age of 10 months in 1888. Mr. Bennett is a staunch
Republican and has been town clerk for 12 years and was supervisor of Granger in 1888-9.
Mrs. Laura Covey, daughter of Samuel C., and Loretta (Woodworth) Jones was born in Granger in 1835. Her father
was born in 1801 in Vermont, the eldest of 12 childrem, and came to Granger about 1820, returning to Vermont in
1830, where he was married and brought his wife to Granger. He was a school teacher, and a man of affairs, holding
the principal town offices, from the first clerk of the town, in 1830, then assessor, justice of the peace many
years, and supervisor. Although not a lawyer he managed legal matters for others, appearing as counsel in justice
courts. He was also a land agent for the Church family, and himself owned 1,000 acres in Allegany. His children
were, John C., Loretta and Louisa (Mrs. H. P. Kellogg of Brooksgrove). Loretta married, in 1852, Howden Covey.
They settled in Granger in 1854, where Mr. Covey was a farmer and filled several town offices. In 1867 they removed
to Mt. Morris, and now reside at Dalton, town of Nunda. Their children have been, Samuel J. and Selden C, and Edward
Lucian A. Doolittle, is grandson of Alvari B. Doolittle who was a merchant in Boston and his son Alvan was born
in Winchester, N. H., in 1812. About 1833 Alvan came to Granger with a wagon load of boots and shoes which he traded
for horses that he took to the Boston market. In 1836 he married Sarah Felch. Children, Thusa, Marshall, Lucian
A. and Lucius B. (twins born 1841), William and Willard (twins). Henry C., Oregon, Frank, Sarah, Edward and Mary.
All but Thusa and Marshall were born in Granger. Alvan Doolittle brought his family to Granger in 1839 or '40 where
Mrs. Doolittle died in 1888. Mr. Doolittle now lives in Washington county. Lucian A. in 1861 married Anna Hanford
and settled on their present farm in 1862. Children, Lucius, who married Agnes Bennett. Their children were Deforest.
Hazel and Fred, Harmon married Claudie Morris. Flora (Mrs. Jones Dunn), her children are Leonard and Lora. Viola
(Mrs. Geo. Gale, whose home is in Denver, Colo.) Grace is unmarried and lives in Denver, Albert is at home with
his parents. Mr. Doolittle is a Democrat in politics, has been postmaster at Granger for the past 16 years. The
office is kept in his farm-house.
Isaac Dunn was born in Staffordshire, England, in 1822, where his father John. son of Benjamin Dunn, married Mary
Mitchell. Children, Louisa, Caroline, Martha, John, Harriett, Ann and Cassandria. John Dunn served 7 years apprenticeship
with a man who wrote a veterinary work, and studied with him and obtained a knowledge from practice which led to
his great success as a veterinary surgeon. He brought his family to Nunda in 1832, and to Granger m 1836, and was
widely known as a farrier. He died in Tuscarora in 1885. Isaac acquired his father's profession which he practiced
for about 30 years in Ailegany and every adjoining county. He married in 1851, Synthia Eldridge. Children. Anna
(Mrs. Alonson Towner, her children are Lillie and Ruth), Lillie (Mrs. Cassius Tuttle, children, Anna, Effie. Lottie,
Willis and Synthia), Jones, married Flora Doolittle and has children, Leonard and Lora. Mr. Dunn bought his present
home of 30 acres in Granger in 1874.
Eli W. Drury is son of Samuel and Hannah (Burgers) Drury, and the grandson of William Drury of County Kent, England,
where Samuel was born in 1799 and his wife in 1804. Their children were Samuel, Charlotte. Helen, Amelia, Edwin
and Eli W., born in Geneseo in 1838. Samuel came to America in 1827, and to Granger in 1845, and bought 110 acres
of land. He died here in i868, and his wife in 1877. Eli W. Drury married, in 1869, Grace, daughter of William
and Emily (Baldwin) Van Nostrand of Granger, Their children are William and Raymond V. Mr. Drury is a farmer on
the old homestead.
Omar W. Fuller, was born in Hamburgh, Erie Co., in 1829. His father, William H., and his grandfather, John Fuller,
both lived in Sharon, Conn. William H., a tanner and harness maker, came to Erie county in 1822, and married Mary
W. Blackmer in 1826. Children Frank, Omar W., Oscar, Jennett. In 1838 he brought his family to Granger, and in
1844 bought 100 acres of wild land, upon which he settled and lived till his wife's death in 1870, and his own
in 1871. Omar has always lived on the old farm, except from 1862 till the close of the war in 1865, when he was
a soldier in the 4th N. Y. H. A., which was stationed at Fort Ethan Allen till 1864 after which it fought as infantry.
Mr. Fuller was in most of the heavy fighting in Virginia till peace was declared at the Wilderness, taking part
in Spottsylvania, Cold Harbor, and many other noted battles. He married in 1852, Eliza G. Guptill, whose family
lived in Maine, coming originally from the Isle of Man. They had one child Annetta (Mrs. Frank Spohn) whose two
children are Josie P. and Theresa.
Joseph N. Guptill is son of William Guptill, born in Waterboro, Maine, in 1776, whose grandfather came from the
Isle of Man. William was a sailor till z8 years Old. He married Ruth Fox and came to Granger about 1830. Children,
Eliza, Matilda, Horace, Ellen, Joseph N., who was born in Granger in 1842. When the Civil War broke out he left
Rushford Academy, where he had been a student nearly three years, and enlisted in 4th N. Y. H. A., which was stationed
at Fort Ethan Allen till 1864, then served as infantry. Mr. Guptill was in 14 engagements including the Wilderness,
Spottsylvania and Cold Harbor, and was at Appomattox at Lee's surrender. He was wounded in the arm in front of
Petersburg. the bullet lodging in his canteen. He went "to the rear," leaving his gun on the field. The
wound was not severe enough to send him to the hospital and the gun would be charged to him, so when night came
he returned to the field, got a gun from a dead soldier, and joined his regiment again the next day. He was discharged
in 1865, and married Melissa, daughter of Henry A. Smith. They settled on the old homestead and had two children,
Horace, died when six years old, and Bessie D.
Hon. Washington Moses, son of Daniel and Phebe (Beckwith) Moses, was born in Granger Jan. 9, 1834. His parents
were among the pioneer families of Lima, Livingston county, where both were born and came to Granger in 1823. Their
children were: Frances, Ashbel, who went to California in 1849, wrote that he had a lot of gold he wanted to send
home and was last heard from in the mountains where it was thought he was killed by the Indians; Luther, enlisted
twice in 85th N. Y. Vols., and was starved to death at Andersonville; Washington; Aziza, still on the old farm
in Granger, constable and deputy sheriff 25 years; his children are: Alice, Luther I., Orrin, Elsie, Nettie, Lottie.
Daniel Moses was supervisor, justice of the peace and held various offices of trust. He died in 1867,66 years old.
Washington was raised a farmer and married in 1863. Ellen, daughter of Ira Parker, an earl" settler in Granger.
Mr. Moses was supervisor of Granger in 1861, '62, '67, '68 and '69, was justice of the peace 29 years, associate
justice of sessions 3 years. clerk of the board of supervisors 7 years, and was a member of the legislature in
1882 and in 1887. He has two sons, Grant E. and E. Walter. In 1891 he removed to Dalton, where Grant E. is a merchant.
John S. Pitt (whose father William Pitt was born in Dorsetshire, England, in 1795, a son of William Pitt,) was
born in Granger in 1843. His father married Miss Elizabeth Vincent in 1820, came to Granger in 1830 and settled
on the farm of 142 acres still the home of John S. Their children were, Jane (Mrs. S. H. Whitcomb), Eliza (Mrs.
Wellington Fletcher), Mary, Anna, Emma, William H., Elizabeth (Mrs. Alonzo Disbro), James, George W., John S. Mr.
Pitt was the first assessor in town and made the first assessment roll for the town of Granger. Mrs. Pitt died
in 1873 and he in 1882. George W. and John S. were both in the late war; George as lieutenant in the 85th N. Y.;
John served in the 104th N. Y. as musician and took part in 43 battles from the 2d Bull Run to the surrender of
Lee at Appomattox. John married in 1869 Lucinda J. Ralston. For the next ten years he was in the West, building
bridges for the I. & St. Louis R. R. Since 1879 he has lived on the old homestead. Besides attending to his
farm he has run a steam thresher for 15 years past, and has been excise commissioner six years.
Frank Ricketts, son of Samuel, son of Richard Ricketts, a Newfoundland fisherman, was born in Dorsetshire, England,
in 1843. Samuel married Mary A. Brewer, and brought his family to Granger in 1843. Children: Frank, Emma, Charlotte
(Mrs. George Parker, dec.), Belle (Mrs. W. Framingham of Nunda), George in Batavia, Richard, Fred in Elmira. Frank
married in 1867 Catharine Closser of Granger; children Rose M., a school teacher for the past ten years, Samuel
and Ethel L. Mr. Ricketts owns a farm of 165 acres, and is justice of the peace, elected on the Republican ticket.
Mrs. Laura M. Smith, daughter of Salmon Remington, was born in Cayuga county in 1827, where her father married
Thankful Kemp. Their children were: Betsey A. (Mrs. Nelson Aldridge), Abner (lives in Minnesota), Oril (Mrs. Richard
Reynolds), Clarinda (Mrs. Clement Bates of Granger), Tamersen (Mrs. Orson Page of Nunda). Caroline, married Norton
Scoville, (their son, Leroy N. Scoville, has lived with Mrs. Smith 17 years and works her farm), Catharine (Mrs.
Frank Pennock of Granger), Rachel died when five years old. Amanda (Mrs. Nicholas Luther), Eliza (Mrs. Milo Eldridge).
Salmon Remington came to Granger in 1829, and was killed here in a runaway accident. In 1845 Laura M. Remington
married Aaron, son of Darling and Mary (Luther) Smith, whose children were Hiram, Darling, Elisha, Luther, Aaron,
Manning. Aaron Smith was born in Granger in 1821, and was raised a farmer. He bought 100 acres of the old homestead,
and Hiram bought the other 6o acres, and Aaron still owned the 100 acres when he died. About 1855 he bought the
farm where. Mrs. Smith now lives, where he died in 1889.
Gardner C. Smith, son of Hiram, and grandson of Darling Smith, lives with three of his sisters, Ellen, Sophia,
and Cynthia, on the old homestead in Granger, where they were all born, he in 1842. Darling and Mary (Luther) Smith
were natives of Otsego Co.. being the parents of 9 children. Hiram the oldest was born in 1808. From Otsego they
removed to Jerusalem, N. Y., and in January, 1818, to Granger, where Mr. Smith bought 80 acres east of G. C. Smith's,
at $3.50 per acre. His nearest neighbor was three miles away. An axe and two dollars in money were all the capital
he had. They got a cow, and raised some potatoes, but often were without bread for several days. At one time they
had no bread for a week. Mr. Smith walked to Moscow and brought a bushel of musty cornmeal on his back, arriving
home about midnight, his wife made some mush and awoke the children to eat it. Hiram often told his children the
mush then tasted better than any cake he ever ate. The family struggled on for nine years. and had only paid five
dollars on their land, when Hiram then 17 years old hired out to Col. George Williams, of Portage, and worked on
his farm three years at $9, $10, and $12 a month, paying for the 80 acres for his father and 30 acres for himself.
In 1832 he married Mary Hardy, born in Danville, Vt. Their children were: Sophia, Sophronia, Frederick, of Portage;
Chauncey on a farm joining the old homestead, Orpha, (Mrs. George Morse of Portage), Ellen, Gardner, Jasper, Sophia,
Prudence (Mrs. E. Van Nostrand of Wellsville), Cynthia. Adeline: Darling Smith and his wife were both born June
9, 1787, and both died in March, 1846, on the old farm then increased to 170 acres. Mrs. Hiram Smith died in 1880
nearly 64 years old. and her husband in 1891 when 83 years old, being the last of his father's family, and survived
by eight children. He left his family 460 acres of land.
George St. John, M. D., is of old New England stock, his ancestors settling there before 1850. His grandfather,
John St. John, lived in Sullivan Co., where he married Clarissa Ferrjss. John, the seventh of their 13 children,
a carpenter by trade, married Sally J. Hutchins in Middleton, Orange Co., where George was born in 1841. Jemima,
the second child, is now Mrs. Charles Van Nostrand of Dalton, and Ferris, the youngest, lives in Ohio. Mr. St.
John brought his family in 1844 to Allen where he died in 1877, 63 years old. Mrs. St. John is now living and 77
years old. George t2Ught school five winters prior to 1863, when he began the study of medicine. [See Medical Chapter.]
He came to Short Tract in 1890, and is the only physician in Granger. He has been for many years a member of the
Hornellsville Academy of Medicine. In 1867 he married Lorette. daughter of Hosea Hoskins. Their children are: May,
(Mrs. Everett Wilcox) and Nina (Mrs. Leonard Bennett of Granger).
George Sylor was born in Germany in 1814. His father left home before he was born, as a soldier in the Napoleonic
wars and was never heard from. His mother, Elizabeth (Gruber) Sylor, later married John Isaman, who brought his
family to Grariger in 1817. George Sylor married in 1838 Barbary, daughter of Michael Isaman. Children: Mary, Elizabeth
(Mrs. Ed. Bennett, children; Nellie and Charlie); George (married Josephine Barnes. one child, Addle); Susan (Mrs.
John Wiederight) ; John (married Fannie Smith, children Adelbert and Doatie M., 2d wife, Nellie Closser. children,
Almer and Grace) ; Will (married Florence Slade, children, Clarence, Anna and Helen); Charles (married Lizzie Smith,
one child Clayton); Michael (married Mary Bennett, children Roy and an infant).
William Van Nostrand comes from Dutch-French families who settled near Bridgeport, Ct., where Aaron, his grandfather,
and Isaac, his father, were born; the latter in 1780. Aaron brought his family to Milton, Saratoga Co., N. Y.,
before 1800. Isaac, farmer, carpenter and millwright, married, about 1805, Grace Hatch of Milton, born in Tolland,
Ct., 1788; children: Luzon, born 1807, died in Allen 1895; Lewis, born 1809; Sidney, 1811 ; William, Feb. 28, 1814;
Mary (Mrs. Thomas Jones, 1816); Anner, 1818, (Mrs. Alonzo W. Fuller); Rebecca, 1820, Mrs. Cläudius Smith;
Lucinda, 1822, (Mrs. Sylvanus W. Smith); Aaron, 1825, died in the army; Jane P., 1827, and Isaac N. also a soldier
who lost his life in the last war. Isaac Van Nostrand came in 1819 to Granger, bought land and built a sawmill
on Rush creek. In 1820 he brought his family who settled so near that at one time he could visit them all in a
half hour. He was supervisor of Grove 1827 to 1835. William grew up a farmer and lumberman. He married in 1840,
Emily, daughter of Enos. and Elmira (Conkey) Baldwin, and settled on the farm still his home. Children: Grace,
(Mrs. Eli W. Drury) ; Helen, Millie (Mrs. John B. Gilpatrick); Ethel, (Mrs. Louis Reynolds). Mr. Reynolds died
in 1892. Originally a Whig, Mr. Van Nostrand has been a Republican since 1856, and has never missed voting at spring
and fall elections, serving his town as assessor, highway commissioner, and six years as supervisor. He has the
largest library the writer has ever seen in a farmer's house. and is noted for vigor of mind and body, extensive
reading, and accurate memory.
George Voss, son of Thomas and Elizabeth (Strickland) Voss, was born in 1821, in Dorchester. England. At the age
of 12 he came to America with John Bridge who paid his fare. Mr. Bridge settled in Portage where George worked
for him five years for his debt and $8o in money. Judge Collins of Angelica was his guardian, and got him a place
with Judge Church at Belvidere as table waiter at $ to a month for a year. The next year he drove a lumber team
for Platt & Nathan, merchants at Short Tract, and in 1841 went to learn the carpenter's trade with Isaac Hatch
for whom he worked three years. In 1844 he married Leah, daughter of John Bennett of Granger. whose farm he worked
three years, when he bought the Crowfoot farm of 50 acres for $300. He later owned ~oo acres, 200 of which he has
given to his sons. Mr. Voss is widely known as a sheep and wool buyer, and keeps ~oo sheep. The children of Mr.
and Mrs. Voss have been Elizabeth (Mrs. William Ricketts of Granger; children Fred and Bessie); Charlie (married
Bertha Ricketts; children, Georgie, Arlie, Leslie and Clarence); Melissa (Mrs. Thomas Wilcox, of Lima; children,
Lester, Mary and Frank); Harry, married. Florence VanNostrand, one child, Morris; Elza (Mrs. Wilson Finney, one
child Mary) ; Rachel (Mrs. Lyman Reynolds of Dalton), children Harry and Vernis); Belle (Mrs. George James. children;
Leon, Guy, Fay, Florence and Leah); Tom, married Elizabeth James, one child, Floyd ; Dick, married Sarah Elliot.
Gurdon H. White is son of Henry White who came from Pennsylvania when a young man to Groveland, Liv. Co., and was
for several terms a school teacher there and in Geneseo, where William, James and Elizabeth Wadsworth were among
his pupils. In 1817 he married Rinda Nowlen of Geneseo. Their children were Amy S. (Mrs. Francis Conable of Nunda);
Elizabeth; Mary (Mrs. Gumsey of Nunda); Asa N., and Gurdon H., born at Hunts Corners, Groveland in 1827. In 1833
Mr. White came to Granger and bought the farm of 97 acres still the home of Gurdon H. Here he lived until his death
in i866. He was justice of the peace. Mrs. White diedin 1880. Gurdon H. White married in 1854, Juliet H., daughter
of Ira Safford, who came in 1847 from Washington Co. to Allen where he died in 1877. Jennie V., an adopted daughter
of Mr. and Mrs. White is now Mrs. William H. Smith of Nunda. (She has one child, Clifford.) They have also an adopted
son Volney E. Rev. Francis Conable, husband of Amy S., wrote the widely-known history of the Genesee Conference
of the M. E. Church. Gurdon H. White and Senator H. M. Teller were schoolboys together in Granger, their fondness
for each other ripening into a lifelong friendship. In 1892 Mr. White passed two weeks with him in Washington.
John Welstead, born Dec. 26, 1807, married, Oct. 26, 1829, Margaret Willcox, born June 25, i8o8. They came from
England to Granger in 1829, where they settled and cleared land for the little log house where they lived some
time, and also worshiped in a log house. Their children were Betsey, William, John, Jane, Thomas, James, Daniel.
Mr. Welstead was a farmer and shoemaker. His wife died July 11, 1846. He married second, Eva Lampman, who died
Jan. 18, 1874. Mr. Weistead then made his home with his son William. until his death Aug. 2, 1887. William Weistead
educated as a farmer, was a clerk for George Ayrult for 5 years, and since then has been a merchant in Short Tract
for over 25 years, deputy postmaster 3 years with the office in his store, and an excise commissioner for 3 years.
He has also conducted a farm and now owns 234 acres of land. He married, in i86o, Mahalah Bradley, born in 1841.
Their children have been Lincoln A., born Feb. 9, i86r, died Oct. 14, 1875; Maggie A., born Oct. 13, 1878, died
Nov. 6, 1890; Otto J., born Aug. I, i868, married in 1887, Emma Harris, born Dec. 17, 1867. They have a son, Fayétt
Leroy Weistead, born Nov. 21, 1889. John Weistead moved to Illinois about i86o where he enlisted in the First H,
A. and served 4 years. He later went to Nebraska, took up government land, sold his interest and went to Fremont,
Neb. Jane married at Short Tract, Edwin RaIf, went to Illinois about x86o and after taking up government land,
sold and went to Fremont, Neb. Thomas Welstead moved to Illinois, was a farmer, moved to Iowa, where he served
about 6 years as supervisor, was member of the legislature, later located in Waterloo and deals in stock. James
Weistead enlisted in the i 36th N. Y. Reg't, remained 5 months, was ill and discharged. Later located in Fremont
where Daniel, who married Clara Townsend at Short Tract, also made his home.
John Wiederight. is son of David Wiederight, who married Elizabeth Boss in Canada, and came to Grove about 1820.
Children: Catharine, Jane, Amelia, Mary, Alanta, George and John, born in Grove, in 1835. John was brought up a
farmer and learned the shoemaker's trade. In 1862 he enlisted in Co. F, 104th N. Y. V., and served in the army
of the Potomac, was in the battles of Cedar Mountain, 2d Bull Run, South Mountain, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville,
and Gettysburg, where he was wounded in his foot. He married Susan, daughter of George Sylor. Children: Herbert
(married Mary Stewart) and Mary. Mr. Wiederight has kept a shoeshop at East Granger since 1865, where he owns a
farm, and has kept. a grocery for the past 15 years.