Sunday, May 31, 2020

This Day in Bovina for May 2020

Here's the monthly compilation of the entries on the Town of Bovina Historian Facebook page:

119 years ago today, on May 1, 1901, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder, "Dr. J.D. Frisbee, of Andes, was in this place doing dental work.  He expects to visit this place every two weeks."

109 years ago today, on May 2, 1911, as later reported in the Andes Recorder Bovina column, a son was "born to Mr. and Mrs. A. Thomas Archibald, Mountain Brook…" This son was Marvin Archibald. Marv married Eleanor Burns in 1942 and would pass away in 1987.

200 years ago today, May 3, 1820, Bovina's first ever Liquor license was issued to John Hastings at a meeting of commissioners of excise. 

Eighty-four years ago today, on May 4, 1926, two Bovina farms hosted woodchuck killing demonstrations held by the Farm Bureau. One at 10 am at the farm of James Boggs, the other at the W.J. Storie farm. The Catskill Mountain News, in reporting these under the headline "Woodchucks are Facing Death" noted that the demonstrations showed "how woodchuck dens are treated with calcium cyanide…" Farmers were being encouraged to use these "effective methods of ridding farms of the destructive animals."

258 years ago today, on May 5, 1762, Nathan H. Hilton was born in Connecticut. He was married around 1780 to Mary Pierce. Around 1795, they settled in Bovina. Nathan and Mary had eight children. She died in 1836 and Nathan the following year in 1837.

148 years ago today, on May 6, 1872, the Bovina Board of Excise met to review applications for licenses to sell liquor. No applications were presented. It likely is at this point that Bovina became a 'dry town' and would stay so until after the end of Prohibition.

131 years ago today, the Stamford Mirror for May 7, 1889 reported that "Word has been received that Wilson and Maggie Atkins, of Bovina, reached their journeys' end in due time. The latter is at J.L. Ormiston's, Raymore, Mo., and Wilson is at his sister's, in Jetmore, Kansas." Wilson and Maggie were the children of Isaac Atkin and Nancy Blair. Wilson was born in 1851, his sister in 1849.

137 years ago today, the Stamford Mirror for May 8, 1883 reported that "Gilbert D. Miller has purchase the Halstead place at Bovina Valley, for $1,650, and will go to work thereon at once."

200 years ago today, on May 9, 1820, Margaret Bryce Russell gave birth to an infant, who sadly died the same day. Her husband was James Russell, Jr. The baby was buried in Bovina.

Seventy-one years ago today, in a notice dated May 10, 1949 in the Catskill Mountain News, it was reported that "Those who are driving new cars the past week are James Hilson with a Cadillac convertible, Martin Rabeler a Mercury sedan, Frances Schabloski a Ford sedan."

159 years ago today, May 11, 1861, the Delaware Republican had the following item: "We understand that several gentlemen of the name of Stott, formerly of Bovina, passed through here a few days ago, having been driven from their late residence in Chantilly, Fairfax Co., Virginia, for being Union men. They left most they had behind them and were even pursued and a horse taken away from them." I can't be sure but this likely was the family of John Elliot Stott. Born in Scotland in 1804, he came to Bovina and started his family. It seems the family moved south in the 1850s. Stott's wife Jane Hendry Ormiston died there in 1856. They lost two children there also. And I don't think John was one of the family who ran back north. He is reported as dying in Falls Church, Virginia in 1863. The gentlemen may have been his sons George, James and William.

Sixty-six years ago today, on May 12, 1954, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain News, "Mrs. Fred Thomson held a brush party at her home…"

Seventy-one years ago today, the Bovina column of the Catskill Mountain News for May 13, 1949 reported that "Miss Jennie Hastings is spending some time at the home of her brother, Milton Hastings, and assisting Lillie Happy with her work while she is recovering from her recent illness."

122 years ago today, on May 14, 1898, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "Woodburn & Smyth set up a monument… in the cemetery for Mrs. Muller, in memory of her late husband." Here's a photograph of the monument.  

138 years ago, on May 15, 1882, as later reported in the Delaware Gazette, "Snow was reported to be over an inch deep on Bramley hill, Bovina…"

Fifty-seven years ago today, the May 16, 1963 Delaware Republican-Express reported in its Bovina column that "Volunteers and carpenters will begin this week in remodeling the church basement."

Seventy-one years ago today, it was reported in the Catskill Mountain News in an item dated May 17, 1949 that "We had several hard frosts in town last week. They did considerable damage to tender growths. It is hope this is the last for the season."

Eighty-one years ago today, the May 18, 1939 Delaware Republican reported in its Bovina column that "Edward Snyder is to teach in the Herbert Huggin's district next year." Snyder actually was Edward Schneider. He later was the last teacher at the Maynard district on Bovina road lived to the age of 102, dying in 2016. The Huggins district was Bovina District 5, located at Lee Hollow and Miller Avenue.

Two hundred years ago today, May 19, 1820, Grace Elliott was born in Bovina, the daughter of John Elliott and Christiana Mabon. She married Lewis Knapp in 1851 in Bovina. The Knapps would have three children. She died 1882 in Hamden.

Fifty-five years ago today, the Bovina column of the May 20, 1965 Delaware Republican-Express had the following notice: "The auxiliary of the Bovina Fire Department request that ladies having old sheets or pillow cases no longer usable please donate the same to use as cancer dressings. Please leave at the home of Mrs. Florence Thomas or at the Firemen's Hall soon."

Ninety-eight years ago today, on May 21, 1922, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "Triplets were born to Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher Davidson ....  All were girls and two of them have since died." The surviving girl was Jane Davidson. She survived to adulthood but died in in childbirth in December 1955.

Ninety-one years ago today, the Bovina column of the May 22, 1929 Delaware Republican reported that "the post office inspector has recommended a change of mail route for Bovina. I am sure everyone will be glad."

Eighty years ago today, the May 23, 1940 issue of the Delaware Republican had in its Bovina column this item: "Mrs. Ralph Barnhart remains in a serious condition at present writing." Mrs. Barnhart was born Anna Irene Ruland and married Ralph Barnhart in 1921. They had one son, Donald. Anna was suffering from breast cancer and would pass away the following March in her home in Bovina. She was 40 years old.

138 years ago today, the May 24, 1882 Delaware Gazette issue included the following: "We regret to learn that David Black, Supervisor of Bovina, is not so well, in fact that his friends are very anxious and consider his condition critical." He would survive for a little less than a year, dying in April 1883.

147 years ago today, on May 25, 1873, Sarah Eliza Seacord died. Born in 1842, she was the daughter of Alexander Dean and Phoebe Ann Bramley. Married in 1862 to William Seacord, she had two children before her death at the age of 30. She's buried in the Bovina cemetery.

Sixty-seven years ago today, on May 26, 1953, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain News, the young son of Howard and Theresa Conklin, Marty, "was burned on both arms and hands when he fell into a pail of water at his home last week Tuesday. He was rushed to Margaretville hospital where he remained overnight for treatment."

Fifty-five years ago today, the Bovina column in the May 27, 1965 Delaware Republican-Express reported that "James Hoy of Bainbridge has been transferred from the Bainbridge branch of the National Bank and Trust Company of Norwich to the Grand Gorge branch as branch manager. He will move there this week." Jim was the son of James and Margaret Hoy and grew up in Bovina.

Sixty-eight years ago today, on May 28, 1952, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain News, "Around 15 of the Bovina firemen attended the Elk's celebration at Oneonta Wednesday evening and took part in the parade with 16 other companies."

115 years ago today, on May 29, 1905, Mina Cook submitted this bill for $100 for her services as a teacher at Bovina District number 1 (the Maynard school). 

127 years ago today, on May 30, 1893, Bina Liddle died. Born in 1819, she was the daughter of Henry McDonald and Margaret Donald. She married Alexander Liddle and would have eight children. Bina was widowed in 1884.

144 years ago today, the May 31, 1876 Delaware Gazette reported that "Mr. Alexander Kinmouth, of Bovina, thinks a great deal of his Ayershire cow, which gives 48 lbs of milk a day. He makes 18 lbs of butter a week after using all the milk he wants for the family."

Monday, May 25, 2020

Bovina Bicentennial Celebration, Update 17

Most of you will have heard that the Bicentennial Celebration has been postponed. Here's the official announcement:

It is with great regret that we have decided to postpone the Bovina Bicentennial celebration until next year. The COVID-19 pandemic has made the situation too unsettled to move ahead this summer. Travel restrictions likely will continue for some time to come –  several people already have indicated that they are changing their plans to travel to Bovina in 2020. And while a celebration would be a great tonic this summer, it would be hard to carry it out while worrying about people’s health and safety. By waiting a year, we are hoping that Bovina’s big birthday party can take place in a more joyful atmosphere. We are planning on July 31/August 1, 2021 for the rescheduled celebration, using the same venue and scheduling the same or similar events, including a parade.

In the meantime, stay safe and stay tuned as we explore options for having some form of a virtual celebration during 2020. 

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Bovina Ex-pats - John Coulter, Colorado

John Coulter was the son of James and Nancy Coulter, born in Bovina in April 1842. He spent his childhood in Bovina and when he was 20, enlisted in the 144th New York Infantry in August 1862.  We know a bit about what he looked like from his enlistment. He was described as six feet tall with blue eyes, dark hair and a fair complexion.  John enlisted as a Sergeant and was promoted several times, becoming a 2nd Lieutenant before he was discharged on July 12, 1865. His brother Solomon enlisted around the same time as his brother John and also was in the 144th. Sadly, Solomon was a fatality of the war, dying in 1864 of Typhoid. 

After the war, John headed west, settling in Georgetown in what was them the territory of Colorado, where he was a pioneering citizen. His home is still open for occasional tours, noted as the place where “Judge John Coulter was instrumental in drafting this territorial charter.” Coulter became a lawyer and a justice of the peace and, later, served as mayor of Georgetown.  John also served one term in the state legislature (Colorado became a state in 1876).

From a Colorado Newspaper, December 1867

In 1874, he married Annie Gaffney Leggett, a widow, and adopted her two children. 

During his one-term as a legislator, Coulter had some notoriety outside of his state. In early 1881, he introduced a bill calling “for the destruction of Indians and skunks…” This action was reported in several newspapers, including the New York Times and the Delaware (Delhi, NY) Gazette. The New York Times was highly critical of Coulter, noting in an editorial in its February 18, 1881 issue, that “to class Indians and skunks together is the habit of the free and boundless West.” The editorial speculated it was a joke but concluded that the bill reflected the sentiment of most of the legislature. A week later, however, the same paper reported that the bill “was promptly snubbed in the House…” The local Colorado newspapers blasted Coulter for introducing this bill, as did the leaders in the House. One representative noted that “this bill is an insult to the civilized and enlightened population of Colorado. I have no patience with it.” He closed his remarks with “I move, Mr. Speaker, that the resolution be chucked under the table.” The motion used those exact words and with one dissenting vote, that of Mr. Coulter himself, the resolution was carried. Whether this resolution was why Coulter served only one term is not clear, but his party would not even nominate him to run for re-election.

Coulter was a judge for many years and often referred to as Judge Coulter (and his wife as “Mrs. Judge Coulter.”) He served as mayor of Georgetown in 1891 and 1892. He moved to Routt County, Colorado (later split off to become Moffat County) a few years later, continuing his legal practice.  In 1915, he moved to Boulder and retired from the law, though the previous year had returned to Moffat County to serve as a judge.  On New Year's Day, 1919, John Coulter died of heart disease and senile dementia at the age of 78.  He was buried in Boulder.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

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

In May 1920, as reported in the Andes Recorder, Bovina saw some people moving, the tester in the dry milk plant resigned, and a former Bovina resident and Civil War widow passed away. Here's how it was reported in the Andes Recorder:

May 7, 1920

John Blair is preparing to build an addition to his barn.
Gideon Miller has moved to the house recently purchased, adjoining his blacksmith shop. It is reported that he has purchased a house in the village of Hamden with a small farm adjoining and next fall will give up blacksmithing and take up farming.

Resigned as Tester in Bovina

James A. Gow has resigned as the tester at the Dry Milk plant in Bovina Center and will take charge of a plant at Charlotteville, in which he is interested with George Polloy and others.  Harvey Burgin is doing the testing here.

May 14, 1920

Herman Johnson has purchased a new Ford.
James A. Gow has gone to Charlottville, to take charge of the creamery there.
Andrew T. Doig has purchased of Gideon Miller his blacksmith shop and the house adjoining.  We understand that the shop will turned into a garage.  Mr. Doig has sold the house to William Armstrong, retaining the shop and the greater part of the land.

May 21, 1920

Samuel Russell and family, of California, are visiting relatives in town.  He is a son of Dick Russell.  
Mrs. Charles A. Lee, of Lake Delaware, suffered a shock last week which affected her speech.  She is reported to be improving.
Lois Ormiston will teach next year in the Maynard district, and Ruth Ormiston the primary department in the Center school.
The porch on the Kennedy house now owned by John Aitkins is being repaired by Dixon Thomson.
Gideon Miller and family are moving to Hamden, where he has purchased a house in the village and a small farm adjoining.  This leaves Bovina without a horseshoer.

May 28, 1920

Miss Angelica Gerry, of New York, spent over Sabbath at the Gerry summer home at Lake Delaware.
John Blair has the frame for the addition to his barn nearly complete.  He will also tear out the old stables and put in a new concrete stables.
Walter Wilson underwent an operation Tuesday at his home at the Butt End for rupture of the stomach.  The operation was performed by Dr. Silliman assisted by Dr. Ormiston and Dr. Goodrich and patient is doing well.
Mrs. J. DeWitt Warren, a former resident of Bovina, died last week in Delhi, from heart trouble, aged 77 years.  She was a Scotch parentage, and until two decades ago had lived in Bovina.  Her husband was a veteran.