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.