Thursday, December 31, 2020

This Day in Bovina for December 2020

Here are the daily entries for December 2020 from the Town of Bovina Historian Facebook page:

Sixty-five years ago today, on December 1, 1955, the Bovina Town Board met and approved these claims submitted by the town supervisor, Henry Monroe.  

Thirteen years ago today, the December 2, 2007 issues of the New York Times carried a review of "The Toy Farmer," a children's book written by Bovina native Andrew T. Pelletier.


160 years ago today, on December 3, 1860, John Dean died. Born in County Down, Ireland, he came to Bovina before the 1830s. He married Elizabeth Johnson in 1832 and they would have eight children. They lived in the area of present-day Regan Road.


132 years ago today, the Bovina column of the December 4, 1888 Stamford Mirror reported that "J.A. Whittaker, the optician, has been in town for the past week, looking after defective eyes."


200 years ago today, December 5, 1820, John Johnston was born, son of William Johnston and Maria Lathan. He first married Sarah Mitchell and second Susan Brownell. He had four children by his second wife. Johnston died May 3, 1895 at the age of 74.


139 years ago today, the December 6, 1881 Stamford Mirror reported in its Bovina column that "James Hoy, of Kansas, formerly of Bovina, is making his friends in this vicinity a visit." This likely is the James Hoy born in 1822. He married Helen Miller in 1847. She died in 1858 after having three children. James went to Iowa after his wife's death and remarried in 1862 to Martha Jones Smith. They had three children in Iowa. James died in Kansas in 1897.


138 years ago today, on December 7, 1882, Thomas Hamilton signed this document as part of his claim concerning an error on the 1880 tax roll which led to an overpayment of $15.39 in taxes. 

Twenty-eight years ago today, the December 8, 1992 Delaware County Times included the weekly Bovina News by Ann Cairns:  

Sixty-eight years ago today, on December 9, 1952, a benefit dance was held by the Ladies Auxiliary of the Bovina Fire Department "for Billy Aitkens, who was recently wounded by a shotgun…" The music was furnished by Ernie Russ. Aitkens was wounded November 2 while hunting with his father. He was the son of Floyd and Que Aitkens.


142 years ago today, the December 10, 1878 Stamford Mirror reported on an International Dairy Fair in New York City. The last paragraph of the article noted "W.L. Rutherford, of Bovina, Delaware co., entered nine packages of butter for exhibition."


137 years ago today, the December 11, 1883 issue of the Stamford Mirror reported on several illnesses in Bovina. They noted that "Mrs. John Hastings is quite sick with pneumonia." They noted that Dr. Telford's daughter Gracie also was sick with pneumonia and that the doctor himself was ill. And Rev. Lee's wife was reported as suffering from inflammation of the lungs. Mrs. Hastings, Grace Telford and Mrs. Lee would all recover, though Mrs. Hastings would die of pneumonia in 1889. Grace Telford, who was less than a year old when she became ill would live until 1953. Mrs. Lee died in 1897. Dr. Telford, however, would not recover and died January 11, 1884.


103 years ago, the Bovina column of the December 12, 1917 Andes Recorder reported that "Miss Leila Miller, who has spent the past three months with her brother, Earl, in St. Paul and other relatives in Wisconsin and Minnesota, returned to her home…" She was the daughter of John and Bertha Miller. They lived on Pink Street on what later became Suits Us Farm.


Twenty-five years ago today, the December 13, 1995 issue of the Walton Reporter carried this article about Marjorie Russell and Russell's Store.

Ninety-three years ago today, the December 14, 1927 Stamford Mirror reported that "Bovina Center Has Two Fires." Both fires involved barns owned by the Hilson Brothers in Bovina Center in the area of the creamery. The first fire was big enough to require bringing in a second department from Delhi. It was noted that the lack of wind was fortunately, thus preventing the creamery and feedstore from going up in flames.


109 years ago today, on December 15, 1911, as announced in the Andes Recorder, “the ladies of the United Presbyterian church" held a masquerade social at the home of Mrs. Estella Oliver…" The paper went on to note that "All unmasked are expected to pay a fine of not more than $5 or less than 25 cents. All are cordially invited."


Ninety-three years ago today, the December 16, 1927 Catskill Mountain News reported that "Two sites have been offered for the proposed Bovina Community house." One lot was reported as being "opposite the garage…" This likely meant across from what later became Clayt Thomas's garage and is land now owned by Mark Foster. The other option was "land opposite William Archibald's new house…" This is the spot that was chosen. The paper noted that "it is planned to erect a building 36 x 80 of one story construction with basement."


The following noticed appeared in the Andes Recorder, dated 143 years ago today, December 17, 1877:  “All persons are hereby notified not to sell or give any intoxicating liquors to Hiram Scutt.  Mrs. Hiram Scutt" Scutt lived in Andes so his Bovina connection is not strong. And we can’t be sure whether this is the father or son. Hiram Sr was born in Bovina in 1815. The son was born in Andes in 1842. The father died in 1886, the son three years later in 1889.


122 years ago on December 18, 1898, Mrs. Charles F. Smith died at the age of 90.  The Andes Recorder, when reporting her death, noted that "Her maiden name was Christina Lamont, and she came to this town over 40 years ago.  She was an excellent woman, a good neighbor; always cheerful and she will be missed in this community as well as in her home.  On Tuesday, the funeral was held, the sermon being preached by Rev. Samson, and the interment was in the Bovina cemetery." Christina was the second wife of Charles Smith, marrying him in 1856, a few months after the death of his first wife. Charles survived his wife by 10 years, dying in 1908.


117 years ago today, the December 19, 1903 Hobart Independent reported "Sudden Death at Bovina Center." The article reported "The village people were very much surprised to learn of the sudden death of A. F. McPherson which occurred Saturday morning. Mr McPherson went downtown to shovel some snow, and on his way back, he felt ill and stepped in to a blacksmith shop, where he died. He had been a resident of that place all his life and was well thought of by all who knew him. He was aged 71 years. A widow and four children the youngest being 10 years old, survive beside a brother, Albert in Hobart. Funeral services were held Tuesday from the M E. church, interment in the village cemetery.


Ninety-two years ago today, the December 20, 1928 issue of the Stamford Mirror-Recorder reported: "Walter Coulter, with a few helpers, is tearing down the red barn by his mill. He will leave the basement and is taking the remainder up to the upper end of the village where he will make an up-to-date shop. They moved the large parts of the building with the tractor." This building still stands behind the house owned by Pat Parsons Miele next to the church.


Ninety-nine years ago today, on December 21, 1921, Violet Hewitt, the little daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Hewitt, of Margaretville, died in Kingston following an operation for appendicitis. Her remains were brought to Bovina for burial.


206 years ago today, on December 22, 1814, James Gladstone was born, the son of Robert Gladstone and Ann Ray. He was born in Scotland and likely came to Bovina with his parents. He appears to have lived most of his adult life in Andes, but at his death in 1885, he was buried in Bovina in the Associate Presbyterian Church cemetery.


Seventy-seven years ago today, the Bovina column of the December 23, 1943 Delaware Republican reported that "Andrew Reinertsen's horses ran away on Monday morning but little damage was done."


Eighty-three years ago today, December 24, 1937, Bovina's district 3 school held a Christmas Eve program: 

100 years ago today, December 25, 1920, Henry and Ruth Monroe were married on Christmas Day. - blog link


138 years ago today, the December 26, 1882 Stamford Mirror reported in its Bovina column that "Dr. Dickson is moving his stock of drugs and medicines form the basement to the main floor of his store." His store is now the Brushland Eating House.


200 years ago today, on December 27, 1820, Robert Scott posted the following notice in the Delaware Gazette: "Strayed or Stolen, From the Farm of the Subscriber in the town of Bovina, some time since, a number of young CATTLE. - Any person who will give information where the same may be found, shall be liberally rewarded."


Ellen Raitt was born 200 years ago today, December 28, 1820, the daughter of John Raitt and Catherine Shaw. She married Thomas E. Forrest and died on Feb 22, 1868 at the age 47.


156 years ago today, on December 29, 1864, several voters in the Town of Bovina submitted this petition requesting a special town meeting "for the purpose of determining by vote to pay a Bounty not [to] exceed Eight hundred dollars to each volunteer that shall be credited to the said town o the last call of the President for 300,000 men." 

110 years ago today, the December 30, 1910 Bovina column in the Andes Recorder reported that "Mrs. Charlotte Miller continues in very poor health." Charlotte was the wife of David William Miller. Born in 1860, she was the daughter of Robert Gow and Beatrice Graham. She married David Miller in 1887 and was widowed in 1892, left with a two year old son. Charlotte died about a month after this item appeared in the paper on January 24, 1911.


129 years ago today, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "a large party of young people had a dance in Strangeway's Hall on New Year's eve, [1891]. Music by Sutherland Bros. and Jas. Amos." 

Friday, December 25, 2020

Henry and Ruth Monroe's Wedding Anniversary

It was 100 years ago today, Christmas Day 1920, that Henry Francis Monroe was married to Ruth Ormiston at the home of her mother Margaret. Henry was born on June 19, 1896 in Bovina, the son of James and Margaret (Coulter) Monroe. Ruth was born two years earlier, June 15, 1894, also in Bovina. She was the daughter of Thomas and Margaret (Boggs) Ormiston. 

This invitation to their wedding
was received by my grandmother

Henry and Ruth's Wedding picture

Ruth and Henry would have five children. Their first child was a short-lived son named Robert, born and died in June 1922. They would then have three daughters, Frances in 1923, Isabelle in 1925 and Elinor in 1927. In 1930 their son Lauren was born. 

This photo of Ruth and Henry and their children was taken by Bob Wyer in November 1942.

Henry and Ruth lived and worked on the Monroe family farm in the Mountain Brook area, where Lauren and his wife Lois still live. They were active in the community. Henry was a member of the Farm Bureau, Cooperative Extension and the Delaware County Jersey Club. He was an elder of the Bovina U.P Church for many years. 

From December 31, 1970 Oneonta Daily Star.

Ruth and Henry would be married for 64 years. Ruth passed away on April 17, 1985. Henry survived his wife, dying on October 13, 1992. At his death, he was survived by his 4 children, 12 grandchildren, 30 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren. 


Thursday, December 10, 2020

December 1920 - 100 Years Ago "in that Thriving Town"

The news from Bovina in December 1920 included a couple of tragic deaths. Here's what was going on as reported in the Andes Recorder:

December 3, 1920
Elliott Thomson has had a pipeless furnace installed in his residence.
Mr. Titsworth, who lives up-town, has purchased a team of horses from Ed Foote of Hobart.
John Hilson and family spent the day Thanksgiving at Frank Dickson’s on the Little Delaware.
Robert G. Thompson was at Delhi on Tuesday and traded his Buick roadster for a five passenger 1921 Buick.
Albert Townsend has sold his farm, known as the Boyd place, on Pisgah and the writings were drawn Wednesday.
Mrs. John A. Irvine started Saturday for Seattle, state of Washington, to spend the winter with her three sons. Her sister-in-law, Mrs. W.T. Black, of Delhi, accompanied her.

Bovina Farm Sold
    David Liddle has sold his farm just below the Butt End, to his son, Milton Liddle.  The place is known as the Thomas Hilson farm. Mr. Liddle expects to move to Bovina center.

Fell Down Cellar Stairs
    Mrs. Robert R. Gladstone fell down the cellar stairs this week at her home in the village, and received a black eye, an injury to her shoulder and a general shaking up, but no bones were broken.

December 10, 1920
Teacher’s conference was held at Bloomville on Wednesday.
The third number on the entertainment course was held Monday night by Miss Warnock, a reader.
David Liddle, who recently sold his farm at the Butt End to his son, has rented the Jennie Miller house in Bovina Center.
Mrs. John A. Irvine, who left here November 27, for Seattle, made a quick trip and arrived the following Wednesday morning.
Robert G. Thomson and Harry Robson have been hauling the stock of soda which the Dry Milk Co. had on hand to Delhi, for shipment to Bainbridge.
Owing to the small amount of milk being received the Up-Town Creamery has shut-down and what milk there is is being hauled to the Bovina Center Creamery.
W.H. Taft and son returned from a trip to Auburn last week, bringing 15 head of purebred Ayrshire cows.  The shipment includes granddaughters of Scotland’s highest producing cows.
The dairies and barns of the 73 patrons of the Bovina Center Co-Operative Creamery were examined and inspected the past week Dr. Irvine and H.C. Burgin.  The Dry Milk Co. claim they cannot find the last inspection reports.

December 17, 1920
David Liddle has moved to the Jennie Miller house in the Center.
The Center school will close next Wednesday with an entertainment.  It will re-open January 3.
Albert Townsend has moved from the Boyd farm on Pisgah to Harpersfield.  Mr. Hanson, of Colorado, to whom he sold the farm, is now in possession.

Bovina Boy Died Suddenly
Alex Liddle Passed Away December 10 in New York City.
    Alex Liddle, eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. David Liddle, of Bovina, died in Roosevelt hospital, New York City, on December 10 from spinal meningitis aged 39 years.  He was manager of a Sheffield Farms plant and Thursday morning returned to his home from the office and complained of not feeling well.  Soon afterwards he became unconscious and was removed to the hospital for treatment.  He did not rally and passed away without regaining consciousness.  He is survived by his parents, his wife, who was Ella Hanlon, of Davenport, to whom he was married 16 years ago, and by one daughter.  Burial was at Davenport on Sabbath.

Young Bovina Farmer Killed
Frank Munson Has Skull Crushed When Hit By Falling Tree
    Frank Munson, a young farmer living on the Cathels farm in the town of Bovina was killed last Monday afternoon while at work in the woods. With a neighbor, Eugene Quick, he had chopped through a large tree and when it began to fall he ran to get out of the way.  The tree fell in the opposite direction than was expected, however, and it struck the unfortunate man a heavy blow on his head, crushing his skill and killing him instantly.  
    Dr. Silliman of Delhi was summoned to make an examination of circumstances surround the accident.  It appeared that no one was at fault, as Quick shouted to Munson when he saw which way the tree was falling, but the latter was unable to get out of its way.
    Munson was born in Davenport 29 years ago, and spent his early life in that place.  About seven years ago he left Davenport to take work in the creamery at Bloomville, and he was employed there until after the United States entered the World War. He was called to the colors in 1918 and served with the army at home for a few months.  Shortly after his discharge from the service he married Miss Hazel Russell of Bovina Center and they made their home on the farm where he was killed.
    The funeral was held Thursday from the Covenanter church of which he was a member.

December 24, 1920
William J. Archibald will install a Western Electric plant to light his farm residence and barn.
Mrs. Marshall Thomson, of Glen Spey, N.Y. is visiting her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Blair.
A continued tea party was held at the home of Rev. Crawford.  The first at 1:30 and second at 3 o’clock.
The 10 year old son of James Mabon was operated upon Friday at Delhi for appendicitis.  He was taken Thursday.
Mrs. Thomas Ormiston has issued invitations for the marriage of her dauter, Ruth Ormiston, to Henry Monroe at high noon on Christmas Day.

Married Fifty Years
    Mr. and Mrs. James C. Mabon of Delhi, former residents of southern Bovina, passed the fiftieth anniversary of their marriage quietly on Tuesday, December 21.  A celebration had been planned, but on account of the illness of their grandson it was postponed.

December 31, 1920
Cecil Russell is taking his annual inventory.
Miss Jane Hilson, who is a teacher at South Hampton, Long Island, is home for the holidays.
The case of Anthony Banuat against Jean Muller for assault, which was to have been tried Monday before Justice Strangeway and a jury was adjourned to January 12.
Word comes from Southern Pipes, North Carolina, that Mrs. Earl Shaw, who was Helen Thomson, formerly of Bovina, is already showing the beneficial effects of the climate.

Monday, November 30, 2020

This Day in Bovina for November 2020

Ninety-one years ago today, the Catskill Mountain News on the front page of its November 1, 1929 issue printed an article that originally appeared in the Delaware Republican with the headline "CITY ENGINEERS PLAN DAM ON THE LITTLE DELAWARE." The paper noted that if the plans reached fruition, "properties at the 'Hook' including the beautiful St. James' chapel and community house erected by Miss Angelica Gerry…" would be flooded. The article went on to note that "nothing may come of all this…." but noted that "there may be 'more truth than fiction' in the rumors of the Little Delaware dam project; the fact may be nearer than we think."


161 years ago today, on November 2, 1859, Robert J. Forrest, the son of Robert and Elizabeth Forrest, died at the age of 4 years, 6 months and 19 days. He died as the result of being scalded. The hired girl had left a pail of water on the floor while getting more. The little boy was playing with the water in the pail when he heard the girl coming back. He was afraid he would be scolded and backed away from the pail, falling against a pot of boiling water which proceeded to spill on him. He lived for a couple of days after the accident.


196 years ago today, on November 3, 1824, this "true canvass and estimate of the votes taken at an election held in the town of Bovina" on November 1, 1824 was issued. The votes were for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, senator and member of congress and two members for assembly. Note that Erastus Root, who it is claimed named Bovina, received only 45 votes as Lieutenant Governor as opposed to 93 votes cast for his opponent. Root was the running mate of Samuel Young. Young and Root lost statewide to Dewitt Clinton and James Tallmage. 

140 years ago today, the Bovina column for the Stamford Mirror, dated November 4, 1880, reported that "Election day passed off quite lively with us. A great deal of excitement prevailed all day."


157 years ago today, on November 5, 1863, this receipt for a bounty payment made to Charles Wycoff was audited. Wycoff received $140 in bounty payment for volunteering during the Civil War. Wycoff had enlisted in the 72nd NY Excelsior Regiment in December 1861 but was discharged within three months for disability. One source states he later re-enlisted in the NY 144th but no further information about him can be located. 

112 years ago today, the Bovina column of the November 6, 1908 Andes Recorder reported that "A monument has been erected in the Center cemetery to memory of John and Barbara Lewis." Here's the stone today. 

Sixty-five years ago today, on November 7, 1955, John S. Burns died.  Born in Bovina in 1888, he was the son of Alexander Burns and Nancy Miller.  He married Elizabeth Carnright and had two daughters, Mary, who would later marry Harold Lounsbury, and Agnes, who was married to Robert Burns, Sr.  He was widowed when his wife Elizabeth died in 1952.  John is the grandfather of Jack and Bob Burns and their sister Norma Phillips. Here he is as a child with his parents, sister Aggie Draffen and his grandfather and namesake. 

138 years ago today, on November 8, 1882, as later reported in the Stamford Mirror Bovina column, "A night-cap party was held in Hasting's Hall, on Wednesday evening, for the purpose of raising money to lay sidewalks through Brushland. The result was about $11 in cash and a splendid assortment of night-caps."


Eighty-one years ago today, the November 9, 1939 Delaware Republican, in its Bovina column, reported that "Mrs. Clinton Marks a former resident of this town is visiting Mrs. Fred Thomson." The same column also reported that "Mr. and Mrs. Claude Erkson have moved into Miss Calla Bogg's house at the turn onto the Bramley Mountain Road." This likely is the residence of the late Hugh and Pat Lee and now the home of Taylor Foster.


122 years ago today, on November 10, 1898, Alex Hilson presented this bill to the Town of Bovina for his services as Bovina Town Clerk, using his store's bill head.


208 years ago today, on November 11, 1812, Deborah Maynard died. She was the daughter of one of Bovina's first settlers, Elisha B. Maynard. She is buried in the Brush Cemetery. Here’s a photo of her grave from Find A Grave:


113 years ago today, November 12, 1907, "The second number of the Bovina Entertainment Course" was Judge Alden.  When advertised, the judge was promoted as "an interesting speaker."


Sixty-eight years ago today, the Bovina column of the November 13, 1951 Delaware Republican-Express reported that "Mrs. Agnes Draffin, who has been assisting her brother, John Burns, since early summer, has returned to her home in town for the winter." Her home is now the residence of the Pelletier family. Here's a photo of her with her late husband Dave in front of their home in the Bovina Center hamlet. 

Thirty-four years ago today, the November 14, 1986 Binghamton Press carried this article about a fundraiser for Ed Finkenberg, who had been seriously injured when he was hit by a car in Manhattan. 

Eighty years ago today, the following ad appeared in the November 15, 1940 Catskill Mountain News: "STRAYED-From Mary Weber pasture, Bovina, 8 heifers. Liberal reward for information. E.L. Foote & Son, Inc., Hobart, N.Y."


132 years ago today, on November 16, 1888, as later reported in the Stamford Mirror's Bovina column, "A small company of young people assembled at the Hall….and had a good time, all on account of Harrison's election, with 'Tommy' as 'chief mourner,' instead of 'actor,' as before election." The same article in the Mirror went on to report "We have heard, through our village gossips, that one of our young men has won the hand of a fair damsel by the result of election. 'Rats,' who is the lucky gent?" Harrison is Benjamin Harrison, who defeated incumbent President Grover Cleveland. Four years later, the two would have a rematch, with Cleveland coming out on top.


Eighty-one years ago today, on November 17, 1939, Mr. and Mrs. Alex Myers celebrated their sixtieth wedding anniversary in the Bovina U.P. Church parlor. As later reported in the Delaware Republican, "those from out of town were their son and daughter-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. John Myers and their daughter, Mrs. Anna Thomson and Mrs. Myers' brother, John Laing all from Binghamton. Mr. and Mrs. James Laing of Hotaling Hollow also Lynn Dickson, Misses Kate and Freda Muller of Andes and Miss Mary Ormiston of Oneonta." Photograph by Bob Wyer. 

Sixty-eight years ago today, in an article dated November 18, 1952, the Catskill Mountain News reported that "Bovina Center Hunters Shoot Several Deer." The report went on to note that lucky deer hunters in the Bovina area were Vincent Thimbell (sic), Jr., Herby Parsons, Ronnie Oelsner, Roy VanBuren's hired man, Charles Robinson, and a city visitor at the VanBuren home. Several deer were taken from this area by out-of-town hunters."


Sixty-seven years ago today, the November 19, 1953 edition of the New York Times published the obituary for Sylvanus W. Bramley, who had died in White Plains hospital the previous day. He was the founder in 1926 of Bramley & Co, Inc, a White Plains jewelry firm. Sylvanus was born in Bovina in 1865, the son of Stephen G. Bramley and Mary S. Lull.  


Seventy-nine years ago today, the November 20, 1944 Delaware Republican reported in its Bovina column this item: "While skating on roller skates on the sidewalk in front of the post office Friday afternoon, Thelma Hotchkin fell and broke her leg between the knee and the ankle. She was taken to the Delhi hospital where Dr. Thomson attended her."


200 years ago today, on November 21, 1820, William Murray was born in Bovina, the son of William Murray and Jean Black. He married Rachel Merwin in 1850 and died in Delhi in 1887 at the age of 66.


139 years ago today, the Bovina column in the November 22, 1881 Stamford Mirror reported that "Thomas Gordon is teaching the school near the Bovina P.O.; Easton Phyfe in the Brushland district; James King the Coulter Brook school and George Gemmel at the 'Hook.'"


237 years ago today, on November 23, 1783, Jennett Graham was born in the Scottish Borders, the daughter of John Graham and Jane Grey. She married William Ormiston in Scotland in 1801. Shortly after the marriage, William and Jenett emigrated to America and settled in Bovina. They had eight children. Jennett died in Bovina in 1856 and is buried in the old Associate Presbyterian Church cemetery on Reinertsen Hill Road.


Seventy-three years ago today, the November 24, 1947, Catskill Mountain News reported that: "Several attended the funeral of William Coons held at Halls funeral parlors at Delhi Monday conducted by Rev. W. Wade Miller. Mr. Coons lived in Bovina several years. He was a sawyer. About two years ago they moved their mill to Bloomville where he was employed at the time of his death."


135 years ago today, the November 25, 1885 Delaware Gazette reported that "Circulars from N.Y. city state that the butter from the towns of Roxbury and Bovina this year is inferior in quality to that from the same towns in former years."


142 years ago today, the November 26, 1878 Stamford Mirror reported in its Bovina column that "John G. Bramley, who has been engaged on the State Survey during the past summer, will spend the winter at home and teach the school in which he was formerly a pupil."


137  years ago today, the Bovina column in the November 27, 1883 Stamford Mirror reported that "D.L. Thomson has finished his job of tinning the roof of the R.P. Church." This is the church that stood about where the playground and fire house now stand.


180 years ago today, on November 28, 1840, Alexander Storie was deemed to be "well qualified in respect to moral character learning and ability to teach a common school in this town…." (document courtesy of the Delaware County Historical Association). 

143 years ago today, the November 29, 1877 issue of the Andes Recorder in its Bovina New reported that "A literary society has been organized here.  President, Russell Stevens; Secretary, Thomas Gordon.  It numbers eighty five members and supports two papers, 'The Star,' and 'The Meteor' edited by gentlemen and ladies respectively. Orations, debates, select readings, etc. are also given."


Seventy-six years ago today, the Bovina column in the November 30, 1944 Delaware Republican Express had this item: "Mr. and Mrs. Alex Hilson have a son, born on November 24th; his name is James Alexander." This is Jim on the left with his parents and siblings, taken in 1952. Photo by Bob Wyer.

Friday, November 20, 2020

Bovina Ex-pat - David Sloan


David Sloan was born in Belfast in what is now Northern Ireland in February 1843. He came to Bovina as child with his parents, Orr and Sarah Sloan in 1848. In March 1864, he married Margaret E. Hilson, daughter of William Hilson and Elizabeth Strangeway. Margaret and David had five children, all born in Bovina. Margaret died two years after the birth of her last child in 1876 when she was only 33.

Sloan lived in the house now owned by Dick and Carol Brannen, where he worked as a shoemaker. He was politically active while in Bovina. The October 06, 1886, Delaware Gazette reported that Sloan “was escorting candidate Thomson about Delhi, Monday evening. It is reported that they were looking after Prohibition votes.”

A few months later, his support of prohibition must have come into question when this report showed up in several local papers in August 1887: "David Sloan and Peter McNair went to Hobart last Monday, after Dr. McNaught to come and visit McNair's wife. They did not return that evening, as expected, nor the next. Alex. Hoy became alarmed about his horse and wagon and on Wednesday he sent David Finkle to bring the horse home. He found them at Bloomville, where they had driven through the rain on Tuesday. They had imbibed too freely at Hobart and had upset or in some way had broken the wagon, and were in a sorry condition. McNair came home with Finkle, but Sloan was not satisfied and went on to Delhi, and has not returned yet."

Sloan’s reasons for heading west are not documented, but it appears that around 1890 he moved to Colorado where he worked in the coal mines in the Gunnison area of the state, living mainly in boarding houses. He worked for several years as watchman for the Colorado Fuel and Iron Col at its Crested Butte mines.

He made a number of trips back to New York to visit family members into the first decade of the 20th century, making the trips almost annually. His daughter and son-in-law moved out west in 1909. A local Colorado newspaper reported on this move: “A daughter and son-in-law of David Sloan came here from New York recently and will make this their permanent home. The reason given was that there is work here in the mines every day in the year while in York state there is nothing to do during the winter months.” David’s daughters Clara and Sarah also moved to Colorado. His son William settled in Iowa sometime in the 1910s.  With his children moving west, it appears David’s trips back to New York ceased.

David’s son Leonard had moved to New York City in the 1910s and died there from pneumonia in 1916. At the time of his death, he was the manager of Sheffield Farms Milk depot. Leonard is buried in Bovina. His death was reported in the local newspapers in Crested Butte.

In later life, he was assistant sergeant at arms of the state senate in Denver. When the senate was in session, he stayed with his daughter, Sarah Gladstone in Denver. He was on duty at the state senate when he took ill and died at his daughter’s home of pneumonia on February 8, 1921. He was buried in Gunnison.

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

November 1920 - 100 Years Ago "in that Thriving Town"

100 years ago this month, the Andes Recorder reported the following activities in the Town of Bovina:

November 5, 1920
An addition is being built onto the Bovina Centre Co-Operative creamery.
James E. Hastings is building an addition to his already large barn, in order to provide room for his produce.
Bovina is building a piece of stone road through the little hamlet known as the Butt End, making use of the auto money.  Residents in that vicinity also subscribed quite a sum.  It is planned to build a stone road the three miles between the Butt End and Bovina Center as rapidly as possible.

October Term Supreme Court
Bovina Woman Wins $500 Verdict in Slander Case
    The case of Jennie B. Doig vs. Elmer Close, for alleged slander, which had been on trial since Thursday, went to the jury and a verdict of $500 was returned for the plaintiff.  This case has been attracting considerable attention in Delaware county, as the parties involved are well known.

Famous Violinist
Ward Baker, Formerly in Bovina, and Daughter in Court
    Nearly everyone in Delaware county probably remembers Ward Baker, violinist, who a few years ago lived in Bovina and delighted audiences with his playing.
    The Chicago Tribune of Oct 1 has the following:  Ward Baker, eccentric violinist, who gained fame in street concerts, and Ellen Cole Baker, his 13 year old daughter, for whose custody he is fighting, are united in Judge Brentono’s court. During Bakers absence in Europe his wife divorced him and later committed suicide. The daughter was transferred from one relative to another until Mrs. Hatch, a sister of Baker, was appointed her guardian and the child is now in the May Wood school at Evanston. The sister is willing that Baker shall have his child if the court decides that he is competent to give her the education that she deserves.  Further hearings will be held.

November 12, 1920
Mrs. John A. Irvine, of Bovina, and Mrs. Wm T. Black of Delhi, expect to start next week for the state of Washington, where Mrs. Irvine has three sons.
Mrs. John Henry went to New York this week to enter a hospital for an operation. Mr. and Mrs. William F. Boggs have gone up to keep house and help with chores.
Last week Bovina taxpayers voted down a proposition to appropriate the sum of $4,680 for the purchase of a steam roller for use on the road.  The vote was a tie – 64 to 64.
A mystery social will be held Friday evening of this week at the home of C.S. Gladstone.  The proceeds are to be used toward the purchase of an organ for the Bovina Center school.

November 19, 1920
Sheffield Smith has purchase[d] a new Ford truck.  He also keeps his White truck.
The skim from the Bovina Center creamery is now being hauled to Andes.
The sum of $23 was realized from a mystery social held last Friday evening at C.S. Gladstone’s.
C.S. Terry, proprietor of the Bovina garage, went to Sullivan county deer hunting and brought back a deer.
Last Saturday the doctors had to fix over Wm. S. Thomson’s leg, which was broken over two weeks ago.  They have now placed the leg in a plaster cast.

Truck Went Thru Bovina Bridge
    Last Friday about dark the White truck of Sheffield Smith went thru a bridge on Miller avenue.  The truck was driven by Floyd Rockafeller and was loaded with 50 hundred of burnt lime for A.P. Lee.  The lime had to be unloaded before the truck could be jacked up and gotten out.  The truck was very little damaged.

November 26, 1920
Mrs. S.R. Seacord and son, Edward, who recently sold the Seacord homestead farm in Bovina, have moved to Delhi village.
William C. Burns, who recently purchased the Jennie Miller house and twelve acres of land below the village, is making numerous improvements about the place.

Saturday, October 31, 2020

This Day in Bovina for October 2020

Ninety-nine years ago today, on October 1, 1921, Jennet Isabella Doig died. She was born in 1867, the daughter of William S. Doig and Margaret Miller.


Forty-six years ago today, the October 2, 1974 Stamford Mirror Recorder carried this article listing new books at the Bovina Public Library: 


138 years ago today, on the evening of October 3, 1882, as later reported in the Stamford Mirror's Bovina column, "Some of our young men amused themselves by running horses through Brushland…." The action was "severely condemned by people generally…," partly because it was done "while people were on their way to Miss Meade's entertainment…" There also was damage to Dr. Telford's fence and several people were injured. "It is to be hoped that such a thing may not occur again."


134 years ago today, on October 4, 1886, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Stamford Mirror, "Madison McFarland, James L. Ormiston and Miss Addie Scott started for Missouri…going via Arkville and New York. Mr. Ormiston will return in a few weeks." It appears that at some point Madison McFarland also returned home, dying in Margaretville in 1914. Addie Loughran Scott did stay, marrying James H. Morrison in 1890.


140 years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 5, 1880 Stamford Mirror reported that "Dr. Dickson purchased a building lot of Rev. J. Kennedy, adjoining A.F. McPherson. Which of the fair ones are interested in that transaction?" This lot is where within the next year the building that is now the Brushland Eating House was constructed.


199 years ago today, on October 6, 1821, Nancy Armstrong Miller was born, the daughter of John Armstrong and Isabella Coulter. She married John Thomas Miller in 1949. They would have six children, one of whom died in infancy. Nancy died in 1868, leaving five children, ranging from 14 to 2 years old. Her last surviving child was Elizabeth, known later in life as Lib Blair. Lib died in 1965 when she was just shy of 99 years old. And in the interest of full disclosure, Nancy Miller is my three greats grandmother.


122 years ago, the October 7, 1898 Andes Recorder Bovina column reported that "George Forman, who lives at Abram Brandow’s, while out hunting recently, found Alex. Hilson’s money drawer which was taken from his safe when his store was robbed." It was found in the area of East Bramley Mountain Road. The robbery had taken place over a year and a half earlier in March 1897.


Fifty-six years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 8, 1964 Delaware Republican-Express reported that "Mr. and Mrs. Russell Ryder of the Bronx spent the weekend at their summer home here." This is now the home of Dario and Briana Riera.


132 years ago today, the October 9, 1888 Stamford Mirror reported that "D.J. Miller, of Bovina, has filled a 70 ton silo, the first one in that town."


191 years ago today, on October 10, 1829, Andrew Archibald, the ancestor of the Archibalds in Bovina, died at the age of 83. He was born in Lanarkshire, Scotland in 1745. He married Grace Hart in Scotland in 1778 where their children were born. Andrew is buried in Bovina in the Associate Presbyterian Church cemetery at Reinertsen Hill Road.


115 years ago today, the Delaware Gazette for October 11, 1905, reported that "Dr. Young of New York has purchased the practice of Dr. Rabuck, Bovina Centre, and taken possession. He will occupy Dr. Rabuck's furnished apartments in J.W. Coulter's house for the present. Dr. Rabuck will not practice for a time on account of nervous trouble." For more information on Drs. Rabuck and Young, visit the Bovina History Blog at


200 years ago today, on October 12, 1820, this bill was submitted for the surveying of the town of Bovina. The total was was $67, though it appears that there is a math error, since the total written looks like $77. The bill includes $2.25 for rum for the surveyors.


Forty-nine years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 13, 1971 Stamford Mirror Recorder reported on a couple of its citizens' travels: "Mr. and Mrs. Clayton Thomas left Wednesday for a trip to the west coast." The same column reported a return: "Mr. and Mrs. Clark lay have returned form a vacation trip to Wisconsin where they visited relatives."


157 years ago today, on October 14, 1863, Robert Dysart died on Folly Island, South Carolina of typhoid fever while serving in the 144th NY Infantry. More information about Robert can be found at the Bovina NY History Blog at


146 years ago today, on October 15, 1874, as later reported in the Delaware Gazette, "Mr. Alexander Liddle, of Bovina, was using his new horse power thresher at the barn of Mr. John O. Liddle, of Andes, in feeding the machine his right hand came in contact with the knives of the revolving cylinder, and was instantly torn into shreds, as high as and above the wrist. Amputation of the arm was rendered necessary and was performed the same evening by Drs. Wight and Crawford, while the patient was narcotized by ether. - Mr. Liddle was able to ride home the next day, and at last accounts was doing as well as could be expected." This Alexander Liddle likely was the son of John O. Liddle. Alexander was a Civil War veteran. He would survive this accident 44 years, dying in 1918.


Seventy-nine years ago today, the Bovina column in the October 16, 1941 Delaware Republican included this item: "The ladies of the U.P. Church are serving a chicken pie supper at the church parlors, October 21, beginning at five-thirty p.m."


Eighty years ago today, on the Bovina column of the October 17, 1940 Delaware Republican reported that "John McCune has been ill the past week. David Roberts has been caring for the U.P. Church in his stead." John McCune died in 1942.


200 years ago today, on October 18, 1820, Adam Kedzie died in Bovina at age 31.  On December 6, his wife Mary, administratrix of his estate, along with his two brothers, James and William  auctioned off Adam's horses, cattle, sheep and farming utensils at a public auction.  Mary died in 1830.


The Catskill Mountain News reported the arrest of "'Billy' Reed of Bovina' 108 years ago on October 19, 1912. He was arrested "on the charge of public intoxication and sentenced … to 30 days in Delhi jail…" The paper went on to note that this "must seem like going home to Billy." Reed appeared in the 1910 census for Bovina, listed as a servant in the home of Frank and Agnes Coulter.


105 years ago today, the October 20, 1915 Delaware Gazette reported the following: "The body of James D. Boyd, late of Bovina was brought here from New York last Friday for interment. He went to New York four weeks ago and was operated on for gall stones and seemed to be recovering until last week when he died, Thursday. A widow and three grown daughters survive, also four sisters, Mrs. Albert Strickland and Miss Flora Boyd of ‘Delhi, Mrs. E. Coan of Bloomville, and a brother F. M. Boyd of East Meredith. His age was 63 years. The remains were taken to Bovina Center Saturday where the funeral and burial took place." James was 62 years old at his passing.


Eighty-seven years ago today, the Bovina column in the October 21, 1943 Delaware Republican-Express carried this item: "War Ration Box No. 4 will be issued at the Bovina Center School on Friday, Oct. 29th, from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m, and on Saturday, Oct. 30th, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Bring War Ration Book 3 properly filled out. Applications for War Ration Book 4 may be secured at the stores or at the Post Office or the schools. Fill out only one application for each family group."


131 years ago today, the October 22, 1889 Stamford Mirror had the following item: "Alexander White, an extensive farmer at Belle Plaine, Iowa, has been visiting friends in Bovina, it being nineteen years since he was home last. He expects to bid his aged mother a last farewell. She is the oldest lady in Bovina, being upwards of ninety years of age. In return home, he expects to visit, in Chicago, his cousins, the Rev. John Graham's sons." Mrs. White, born Anna Graham in Scotland in 1799, survived her son's visit by almost 4 years, dying in 1893 when she was 94.


200 years ago today, on October 23, 1820, Mary Ann McPherson was born in Bovina, the daughter of Alexander McPherson and Eliza Yeomans. She married James Rutherford in 1847 and died in Franklin, NY in 1902 at the age of 81.


Ninety-one years ago today, on October 24, 1929, as later reported in the Bovina Center column of the Delaware Republican, "Adam Laidlaw and family, Mr. and Mrs. Humbert of New York were at Howe Caverns on Thursday."


111 years ago today, on October 25, 1909, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain News, "Mr and Mrs. E.G. Gladstone and Mr. and Mrs. William J. Doig of Bovina Centre were guests at the home of James Coulter on Wednesday [in Margaretville] while enroute to Colorado where they will reside hereafter."


200 years ago today, October 26, 1820, Andrew T. Thomson was born, the son of Andrew Thomson and Elizabeth Rutherford. He married Elizabeth Dunn and died June 6, 1861.


109 years ago, the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder for October 27, 1911 reported that "Miss Jennie E. Hoy is visiting Andes relatives." She wasn't the only person reported as going to Andes. The same column noted that "J.T. Barnhart made a trip to Andes early in the week." Also reported in Andes during the past week were Mrs. Alex Crosier and daughter and Thomas C. Strangeway. The latter was there to purchase two cows.


Sixty-six years ago today, the October 28, 1954 Delaware Republican-Express reported that "Former Bovina Pastor Dies." Rev. W.L.C. Samson, who had been pastor of the Bovina UP Church from 1895 to 1906, died "in Pittsburg, Pa., where he had preached until he was past 90." After he left Bovina, he was in California until 1914 then moved on to Pittsburgh. 


One hundred years ago today, October 29, 1920, William J. Storie hosted a Halloween Party. This is the invitation received by my grandmother, Anna Bell Calhoun.  


185 years ago today, a notice dated October 30, 1835 was posted in the Delaware Gazetter: "Application will be made to the next Legislature of the State of New York, by the Directors of the Bovina Subscription Library, for an act of incorporation." It was signed by Adam Scott, Samuel Gordon and Andrew McFarland.


200 years ago today, October 31, 1820, Jannet Rutherford was born, the daughter of James Rutherford and Jennet Thomson. She died December 31, 1864 at age of 44.

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Non-Bovina Bovina Postcards

Every once in a while, someone will alert me to a Bovina postcard. Often they end up being ones I have seen (though please never assume that - keep alerting me to cards). 

But occasionally, I get an alert to a card I've never seen before. Recently, Joan Burns gave me a postcard of Bovina and wanted to know where the view on the card was located. I quickly realized that it was a generic postcard view. I have scanned 3 of these in the past decade. One of the big clues is the text that says "Greetings from Bovina Center, N.Y." or "Greetings from Bovina, N.Y." It is clear that it was simply stamped on the generic card. The text showing a genuine view of Bovina is printed on the card, not stamped. 

Here's the postcard (it has a 1933 postmark) that Joan Burns gave me:

This undated postcard came from Chuck McIntosh. 

I briefly wondered if it was Bovina because it had a very slight resemblance to this view (this is County Route 6 just outside of the Bovina Center hamlet and just before you get to Russell Hill Road):

But I highly doubt the color image is from Bovina, though the merchant selling this card may have chosen the design for that reason. 

And from 1929 is this view of a child with sheep, also from Chuck McIntosh. In the 19th century, Bovina had a lot of sheep but that population dropped significantly and in the 20th century there were few sheep. 

I'm always on the lookout for new postcard views of Bovina, so keep them coming!