Saturday, December 31, 2022

This Day in Bovina for December 2022

149 years ago today, December 1, 1873, Alexander Home Gillie passed away. Born in Berwickshire, Scotland in 1805, he married Martha Lewis in 1838 in Bovina. They had four children, one of whom, son William, would die in the Civil War in August 1863.

John William Storie, son of Alexander Storie and Esther Cowan was born 159 years ago today, December 2, 1863.  He was the last child of Alexander and Esther Storie.  Alex and Esther had five children in total, but the two eldest died within a few days of each other in October 1862.  John would marry Jennie Laidlaw in 1890 and have two sons, William and George.  He died in 1944 when he was 80. 

110 years ago today, on December 3, 1912, John Raitt was born in Southern Bovina, the son of Thomas Raitt and Mary Ann King. He was married to Helen Winter in 1941. John worked for the US Post Office and served in military postal services in the European theatre during the Second World War. John retired from the post office in 1972. John was the Delaware County Historian from 1981 to 1995. His wife Helen died in 1997. John died in 2004 and is buried in Bovina.

Ninety-seven years ago today, the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder for December 4, 1925 reported that "Mrs. Walter G. Coulter had her toe severely injured when a soap stone fell on it." Mrs. Coulter was Margaret Strangeway and was the mother of Ruth Coulter Parsons and Celia Coulter. She passed away in 1953.

186 years ago today, December 5, 1836, John Reed, Tailor, submitted this advertisement to the Delaware Gazette. "RESPECTFULLY returns thanks to the inhabitants of Bovina and its vicinity, for the liberal support tendered him since he commenced business, and begs leave to inform them that he has opened a Shop on his new premises with a complete assortment of Trimmings, adopted to the texture and form of the garments of his customers. He has brought up from New York, Draughts, Plates and Reports of Fashions for the season and no expense will be spared to render his establishment commensurate with the growing taste and respectability of the community."

141 years ago today, the December 6, 1881 Stamford Mirror, in its Bovina column, reported that "Henry Coulter and Henry Thomson are attending school at Delhi Academy." The same column noted that "Berry S. Miller is preparing to build a house next summer." I think this house was somewhere on Bramley Mountain, but I'm not sure.

On December 7, 1914, 108 years ago today, there was a fire at the Howard McPherson residence. Here's how the Andes Recorder reported it: "A small fire about midnight Monday night did about $15 damage in the residence of Howard McPherson, adjoining Elliott Thomson's blacksmith shop. During the evening the chimney had burned out but at 11:30 everything was apparently all right. Half an hour later Mrs. McPherson heard something fall and ongoing upstairs found the rooms filled with smoke. Mr. McPherson was not at home and she aroused the neighbors. The fire was in the partition and was put out by the use of several pails of water." This is now the Kim and Marcelo Riera residence.

111 years ago today, the December 8, 1911 Bovina column of the Andes Recorder reported that "The chicken pie supper held Friday evening at the United Presbyterian parsonage and served by the men was a success and $59 was realized."

Ninety-five years ago today, December 9, 1927, Mrs. Mary Phinney was buried in Bovina. As reported in the Andes Recorder, "Her death occurred at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Albert Sarles at Sand Point, Idaho." Born Mary Archibald in 1853, she married Dr. Lehman Phinney in 1881. Phinney was a doctor in Bovina for a number of years. He died in 1901.

132 years ago today, on December 10, 1890, Gilbert Jardine posted this notice advertising the sale of his farm in the Delaware Republican. Born in Scotland in 1822, he married Nancy E. Tuttle in 1856. Gilbert died in November 1893 and his wife a bit over a year later. The farm was on Townsend Road in the Bramley Mountain area.

108 years ago today, on December 11, 1914, a horse owned by John Hilson and driven by James Hilson ran away while it was hitched to a cutter.  The horse took fright and ran from the street onto the flat below the creamery, causing some damage to the cutter.  Apparently, James and the horse were not hurt.

110 years ago today, on December 12, 1912, Bovina native David L. Gladstone was married to Mary Taylor in Crested Butte, Colorado. He was the son of George and Sarah Gladstone. This is the marriage notice that was sent the Hilson family. David L., also known as Leonard, moved to Colorado with his parents in 1909 and appears to have had a somewhat checkered life. He and Mary had one son, John Taylor Gladstone. Leonard and Mary were divorced in 1926. Both remarried, with Leonard divorcing again in 1931. He was in Minnesota in 1950, working for the Chicago and North Western Railroad. Mary died in 1964 in Colorado, Leonard in 1984 in Minnesota. 

107 years ago today, December 13, 1915, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "More than a foot of snow fell during Monday afternoon and night.  Tuesday morning the teamsters started out for their Delhi trip but soon turned back.  Traffic was much delayed and mails did not arrive."

Eighty-five years ago today, December 14, 1937, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "Mrs. James Ackerly died at her home in Bovina Center … after a long illness at the age of 82 years.  Her maiden name was Velma Barnhart and she was born at Shavertown.  She was twice married, her first husband being Eugene DuMond.  She is survived by her husband, James Ackerly, and a daughter, Mrs. Delbert Dickson, by her first marriage.  The funeral will be held Friday with burial in Andes."

105 years ago today, on December 15, 1917, Mrs. Robert G. Thomson arrived home with her husband, her mother, Mrs. Georgia More, and a nurse. Nelle Thomson had been in New York City for cancer treatments, treatments which were unsuccessful. The Andes Recorder noted that "she was brought home on a cot." She passed away a few days later on December 19.

161 years ago today, on December 16, 1861, this receipt was issued for payment made for "work done on the Bridge by Robert C. Scotts." This likely is the bridge at the lower end of the hamlet. While it was a stone bridge, it probably was not the one that was well known and was demolished in the 1950s. That bridge had at least one predecessor that proved to be poorly built and had to be rebuilt in 1873. 

102 years ago today, the illness of a child put off a golden wedding anniversary celebration.  The Andes Recorder reported that "Ralph, the 10-year-old son of James Mabon was operated upon Friday, December 17, 1920, at Delhi for appendicitis.  Because of his illness, the celebration of his grandparents 50th anniversary (James and Ellen Mabon), scheduled for December 21, was postponed."

124  years ago this afternoon, 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 [Bovina] 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."

145 years ago today, on December 19, 1877, the Bovina Methodist Episcopal Church reopened after having been closed for repairs.  There was a sermon at 11, a reunion service held at 2:30 and another sermon at 7 pm.  When the church issued a notice for this service, the Andes Recorder included the following:  "We would earnestly commend to the attention of those in this vicinity the services above announced.  They will be very interesting, and profitable to all who may attend. Revs. A.K. Sanford and J.E. Gorse are earnest warm-hearted Christian men, and the service conducted by them, and stamped with Divine approval will be blessed for good. The church societies of the towns surrounding will, we hope, take a warm interest in this meeting, and encourage the Brushland M.E. Society by their presence and means.  'The liberal soul shall be made fat; and he that watereth, shall be watered also himself.'" The church was located across from where the Bovina Community Hall now stands.

John Walter Blair was born 156 years ago today on December 20, 1866, the son of James and Hannah Blair. He married Lib Miller in 1889. They farmed in Bovina for many years. John was killed in August 1945 when his team of horses ran away with him. He was dragged by the horses and was fatally injured when his head struck a rock. He is buried in Bovina.

209 years ago today, on December 21, 1813, Joel Brush, son of early Bovina pioneer Alexander Brush and Nancy Griffith Brush, died. He is buried in the Brush cemetery next to the library. Born in 1786, he was married to Elizabeth Maynard, daughter of another early Bovina pioneer. They had two children before his untimely death at the age of 27.

111 years ago today, the December 22, 1911 Andes Recorder Bovina column reported that "The three churches will unite and hold a Christmas tree in the town hall Monday evening." The same column reported the return home for the holidays of two students - Clifton Scott from Westminster college and Jane Hilson from Oberlin.

Eighty-seven years ago today, December 23, 1935, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain news, "The community Christmas tree was held in the hall…with the different schools furnishing the entertainment."

102 years ago today, the December 24, 1920 Bovina column of the Andes Recorder reported that "William J. Archibald will install a Western Electric plant to light his farm residence and barn."

133 years ago today, on December 25, 1889, Alexander Storie, a farmer on Pink Street (now the Tom Burns farm) wrote the following in his diary: "Calm warm and pleasant in the morning. Clear calm and sunshine all day. We all went to Mary Ann's for our Christmas dinner. Mrs. Mary Coulter and children, Mrs. Jane Liddle and Samuel Storie and family were there also to dinner. There was fifteen in all."

103 years ago today, the Bovina column of the December 26, 1919 Andes Recorder reported that "The tax collector is on the war path."

125 years ago, on December 27, 1897, the thermometer registered sixteen degrees below zero at the Butt End.  This was the coldest so far that winter.

136 years ago today, the Bovina column of the December 28, 1886 Stamford Mirror reported that "D.L. Thomson, Member of Assembly, has been at Albany this week looking the ground over preparatory to the commencement of his official duties." David Low Thompson was born in Bovina in 1831. David's career in the Assembly would be fairly brief. More about D.L. can be found in the Bovina (NY) History: “I don’t know whether I dare to go back to Bovina or not” – The Brief Career of Assemblyman David Low Thompson (

Walter A. Doig died 120 years ago today, on December 29, 1902. Born in Bovina in 1827, he was the son of Andrew and Margaret (Sanderson) Doig. He married Margaret Armstrong in 1851. They had 10 children. This photo of Walter came from the collection of Celia Coulter.

203 years ago today, December 30, 1819, Nancy Jane Hamilton was born, the daughter of Thomas Hamilton and Elizabeth Arneil. She married Archibald Erkson in 1839. They would have five children. Nancy died in 1899 when she was 79 years old. Her husband survived her by five years, dying in 1904.

186 years ago today, on December 31, 1836, Adam Scott was killed in a riding accident. For more information on this accident, go to the Bovina NY History blog at

Saturday, December 10, 2022

December 1922 - 100 Years Ago in "That Thriving Town"

December 1, 1922

Miss Angelica Gerry has spent the past week at the Gerry summer home at Lake Delaware.

Sloan Archibald is again grandpa – a daughter was born November 22, at Delhi to Mr. and Mrs. Russell Archibald.

The Farm Bureau will hold a community meeting in Bovina Center on December 19 and at Bovina in the evening.

Veterinarian Lester Irvine and Harvey Burgin are inspecting cows, barns and milkhouses of patrons of the Bovina Center Co-Op Creamery.  They are finding a few diseased cows as usual.

December 8, 1922

Mrs. Lucy Coulter is ill with the jaundice.

Mrs. Henry Monroe is giving sewing lessons to the girls of the Bovina Center school.

Mrs. Joe Ross will move from Mrs. Thos Gordon’s house and will board at John Aitken’s.

Mrs. Chauncey McFarland entertained her mother, Mrs. Anna Ruff, of Delhi, over Thanksgiving.

The smokestack on the old boiler at the Bovina Center Co-Op Creamery was blown down by the high wind this week.

Mrs. Glen Taylor, of Beach, South Dakota, who will be remembered here as Minnie Ruff, has gone to Los Angeles, California, for the benefit of her health. [Minnie spent the rest of her life there, dying in 1945.]

December 15, 1922

As its share of the dog license money the town of Bovina will receive $224.92.

Alexander B. Jardine underwent a serious operation at his home at Lake Delaware last week. [He survived this illness, dying 10 years later. Alexander was the grandfather of Marion, Martha and Richard Jardine.]

Thomas H. Johnson, who has been in a New York hospital for several week with a broken leg, has returned home.

While Mrs. James Monroe was en-route to Delhi one day last week the car skidded on the ice at Frank Dickson’s and turned around taking off two wheels.

December 22, 1922

Bovina tax rate, including highway tax, is $25.32.

Isador Berschevsky is in town looking after the cheese business.

A. Jones is here putting the machinery in the Dry Milk plant.

Douglas Davidson, who has been ill since early in the fall, was in the village Tuesday. [Douglass would pass away in October 1923. He was the father of Fletcher Davidson and Vera Storie.]

There will be no more Sabbath evening meetings at the United Presbyterian church until coal is more plenty.

A friend of the U.P. church, whose name is not revealed, recently presented the church with stereopticon lantern.

December 29, 1922

Walter G. Coulter has the job of putting in the ice at the Polley creamery at Frasers.

Charles F. McPherson, up-town, is having his barn piped for water and is putting in buckets for watering his cows.

Mr. and Mrs. Parson, who have been employed at Ale Thomson’s, went to Connecticut last week for a visit of a couple of months.

The Christmas tree and exercises at the U.P. church last Friday evening drew a full house.  Following the excellent exercises Mr. and Mrs. Santa Clause distributed the presents.

All the workmen on the church, chapel and rectory at Lake Delaware, had a vacation from Friday until Wednesday.  Superintendent Bell spent over Christmas at his home in New York.

Professor Baldwin and wife, of New York, Lauren Dickson, from Yale, Marjorie and Anna Dickson, from Cornell, and Caroline Dickson, of Boston, are spending the holidays with their mother, Mrs. G.J. Dickson.

Broke Several Ribs

Andrew Hall, employed by Arthur Bergman, up-town, is at his home in Walton with several broken ribs.  One night recently he started from the barn for the hog pen with a pail of swill and walked off the wall of the driveway falling about four feet.

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

This Day in Bovina for November 2022


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

Eight years ago today, on November 1, 2014, these five Bovinians were part of a group visiting Scotland. Here are Pat Miele, Peg Hilson, Jim Hilson, Jean Parsons Merenberg and Ray LaFever at the Scottish Borders Archives in Hawick. A number of early Bovina settlers came from the Scottish Borders, including Francis Coulter and John "Old Jock" Hilson. 


150 years ago today, on November 2, 1872, Walter A. Doig was awarded $12 in damages for the loss of two sheep killed by dogs. Here's the document: 


119 years ago today, on November 3, 1903, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, a "meeting against secret societies" took place in the Covenanter church in Bovina (the church was located where the fire hall now sits). One of the speakers spoke against the Grand Army of the Republic (the GAR), the Civil War veterans group. The speaker, who claimed to be a Civil War veteran, said "he would not belong to such an order." The Recorder went on to say "we don't want such a man in our order, so he need not bother himself about it. The order is better without such as he."


124 years ago today, the November 4, 1898 Bovina column of the Andes Recorder noted that "out of seventeen cows which John M. Miller has had come in this fall, eight have had milk fever, and four have died." Miller's farm was on Pink Street, the farm later known as Suits Us Farm.


138 years ago today, on November 5, 1884, David F. Hoy submitted this claim for $4 for two days of services he rendered as clerk of elections. 


123 years ago today, on November 6, 1899, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder, "Merritt Reynolds was in town….selling patent neck yokes."


172 years ago today, on November 7, 1850, William D. Thompson, son of David Thompson and Jennette Hume, married Agnes Murray, the daughter of John Murray and Jennet Scott. They would have 4 children, but only one would survive to adulthood, William Henry Thompson. William and Agnes would be married over 51 years. William died in 1902, Agnes three years later.


127 years ago today, the Andes Recorder in its November 8, 1895 edition reported that "There is every prospect of a telephone to the upper part of the town, with an instrument at J.E. Hastings, Johnson Brothers, Post office, Mrs. Hewitt's, McFarland Brothers, A.F. Maynard's and at W.B. Thomson's."


128 years ago today, the November 9, 1894 Bovina column of the Andes Recorder reported that "Gossips say there is to be a case of matrimony on Pink street soon." No further information appears in subsequent papers to identify this couple. There were two couples married in Bovina not long after this notice. Hope Chamberlain married Jennie Mabon on November 28, 1894, but the Mabons lived in Lake Delaware (and I'm not sure from where Chamberlain came). On December 5, 1894, Andrew C. Seacord married Elizabeth Loughran. This may be the couple mentioned in the gossip, but we can't be sure. The gossip could have been totally wrong.


Thirty years ago today, the November 10, 1992 Delaware County Times carried this Bovina News column by Ann Cairns. 


Seventy years ago today, on November 11, 1952, the Bovina Home Bureau held the second meeting on "Self-Help in Case of Accidents." A third meeting was scheduled at the community hall for November 25.


161 years ago today, November 12, 1861, Rachel Atkin died. We don't know much about her ancestry other than that her maiden name was Miller. She married Charles Atkin and they had seven children. She was 58 at her death.


117 years ago today, on November 13, 1905, John Gordon wrote this letter from Laurel Bank, Gatehouse, Scotland to his brother Tom, informing him of the death of his sister Bella. Isabella Gordon was born in Scotland in 1850 and spent her entire life there.  She was buried in Kelton Churchyard. 


113 years ago today, on Sunday, November 14, 1909, the pastors of the Bovina United Presbyterian, Reformed Presbyterian and Methodist churches all preached sermons against dancing.


Sixteen years ago today, the November 15, 2006 Delaware County Times carried this article about Hugh Lee receiving an advocacy award from the New York Library Association. 


101 years ago today, on November 16, 1921, Thomas C. Strangeway submitted this statement of expenses as a candidate for town supervisor (he won and served one term). 


Margaret Sanderson Doig died 150 years ago today on November 17, 1872 of typhoid fever.  Born in Washington County, NY in 1807, she was the daughter of Patrick Sanderson and Nancy Hodge.  She was married to Andrew Doig and would have nine children.  Andrew died in 1865.


Eighty-six years ago today, on November 18, 1936, Lester Foreman was selected to become superintendent of schools in Rochester.  Forman was hired to fill the unexpired term of the previous superintendent, who had passed away.  Foreman was 32 years old and a native of Bovina.  Born in Bovina in 1904, he was the son of Robert Foreman and Dora Alice Boggs.  He graduated Cornell in 1926 and taught in the Rochester area until 1931 when he became an agriculture teacher in the Williamson High School.  Foreman died in Pittsford, NY, outside of Rochester, in 1969.


125 years ago this evening, on November 19, 1897, as later reported in the Bovina Column of the Andes Recorder, Bovina saw two weddings barely a half hour apart. Both ceremonies were performed by the same clergyman, W.L.C. Samson. The paper noted that "it made him hustle and he had to miss one wedding feast." The first wedding was that of Sylvan LaFever and Ella Burns, who were married at the bride's home. Ella was the daughter of Alexander and Nancy Burns. Sylvan and Ella would have three children: Benson, born 1900; Clarence, born 1902 and Ruth, born 1904. Ruth died in 1906 and Ella died in 1908 near Oneida Lake. The same evening of the LaFever/Burns wedding, William T. Miller was married to Mary Boggs. William was the son of Michael Miller and Sally McCune Miller; Mary was the daughter of Thomas Boggs and Jane Archibald Boggs. They would be married until Mary's death in 1926 and would have no children. Ironically, both grooms died in June 1940. Sylvan and Ella's son Benson later married William and Mary's niece, Anna Bell Barnhart. 

Sylvan and Ella (Burns) LaFever

William and Mary (Boggs) Miller


164 years ago today, on November 20, 1858, Maggie Thomson was born, the last of the eight children of John Thomson and Helen Armstrong. She was slated to have a short life, dying in February of 1867 at the age of 8.


William David Thomson (or Thompson, the records vary) was born 154 years ago today on November 21, 1868. He was the son of David Low Thompson and Eliza Murray.  He died in 1958 when he was 89 years old and is buried in Bovina.


122 years ago today, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "the old soldiers were invited to John P. Dennis' [on November 22, 1900], and spent an enjoyable evening together.  The inner man was well cared for and an excellent repast served." Old soldiers was a common reference in this time period for Civil War veterans.


126 years ago today, November 23, 1896, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder, noted orator Colonel H.W.J. Ham gave the first lecture in the fall lecture course in Bovina. "The speaker took for his subject, 'The Snollygoster in Politics' and his lecture far exceeded the expectations of the audience.  It contained enough humor to keep his hearers in the best of spirits, but the undercurrent of solid argument for the uplifting of the plane of American citizenship and fostering a patriotic sentiment that will drive out of politics the self seeking, unprincipled place hugger – the snollygosters – who are feeding on the public and degrading the institutions of the land, made the thoughtful ponder on his words.  He closed with a touching picture of the need now so great in the country of the proper training of the young, and dwelt on the importance of surrounding the young man’s life with pictures of honor and faith."


Ninety-four years ago today, November 24, 1928, an accident took place in Bovina, later reported in the Andes Recorder:  "Hugh McPherson and Ledger Myers had a narrow escape Saturday night in an auto accident.  The young men had been at Henry Monroe's during the day cutting wood and coming home the lights on the car were poor.  When just below the intersection of the uptown and Coulter Brook roads a car left standing in the road without lights by the mechanic at Kaufman's garage in front of the LaFever house, where he lives, loomed up out of the darkness and there was a crash. McPherson who was driving escaped injury.  Myers was hurled against the windshield and it was shattered. Fortunately he was not thrown against the jagged edges of the glass and escaped with only a few minor cuts.  Their car was quite badly damaged." The LaFever house mentioned likely is the home of Leonard and Ann Cairns, owned at that time by my grandmother, Anna Bell LaFever. It was a couple of doors away from mine. Similar such accidents would happen at least twice during my childhood.


123 years ago today, the November 25, 1899 Hobart Independent carried this item: " Tho Bovina Centre lecture course has been arranged as follows: November 28, readings by Miss Dean; December 12, lecture by Colonel Copeland; January 16, entertainment by J. Williams Macy; March 14. concert by Swedish Ladies’ Quartette."


Thirty-nine years ago today, the November 26, 1983 Binghamton Press carried this article about the settle of a boundary dispute between Bovina and Andes. 


Twenty-three years ago today, on November 27, 1999, Edwin Milton Doig passed away. Born in 1905, Ed was the son of Milton and Jennie Thomson Doig. He married Gladys Biggar and had 3 children. Ed was in the army from 1926-29 and farmed much of his life on Pink Street. Here's Ed and Gladys with two of their children, Raymond and Marilyn, in 1943. Photo by Bob Wyer, courtesy of the Delaware County Historical Association. 


120 years ago today, November 28, 1902, the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder reported that "Through the kindness of E.T. Gerry the five year old child of Fred Minister [this might be Minster], who lives in the John R. Hoy tenement house, will soon be taken to New York for treatment.  The child is afflicted with knock knees." I am not sure of the child's name, but a review of the census suggests it was one of his younger daughters, Florence or Kate. The Delaware Gazette reported in October 1903 that "Fred Minster [now living in Delhi] went to New York city…accompanied by his little daughter who is there to finish the treatment which was begun last fall with an operation." In May, 1905, the Delaware Gazette reported that "the child of Fred Minster, which has been at a New York hospital receiving treatment through the kindness of Mrs. E.G. Gerry, is home." Whether this was the same child or another I cannot tell. Fred and his wife Nellie had a large family of at least nine children.


145 years ago today, in the Bovina News from the November 29, 1877 Andes Recorder appeared the following plea: "What has befallen the once agitated project of connecting us with the Andes and Delhi Telegraph Line? If only the proper effort were made this would easily be accomplished. The work should be done at once."


103 years ago today, November 30, 1919, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder, "Dr. Norris B. Whitcomb with his wife and little daughter, who left here to become a medical missionary in Egypt, arrived safely at Naples, Italy." Whitcomb would stay in Egypt until his death there in 1935 from septicemia. He is buried in Egypt.



Thursday, November 10, 2022

November 1922 - 100 Years Ago in "That Thriving Town"

Here's what was happening in Bovina 100 years ago this month. 

November 3, 1922

A Hollowe’en party was held Tuesday evening at the home of Rev. F.N. Crawford.

Mr. Goosmitch, who has been living on Thomas H. Johnson’s farm, has rented the house on the Ward farm on Pink streets heights.

Word comes from Thos H. Johnson who is in a New York hospital with a broken leg, that he can now get around a little with the aid of crutches.

Mr. Kern, of Brooklyn, is here this week superintending the removal of the machinery from the Dry Milk plant, which has been sold to the creamery company.

Luddington Farm Sold

James Robinson, on the Ludington farm above Lake Delaware, had an auction of personal property Wednesday and prices were low.  He has sold the farm to George Forman for $5,600 and will move to Delhi.

Will Build New House

Frank Graham back from Lake Delaware, is preparing to erect a new house next summer.  He has a saw mill and is sawing the lumber which he is getting from his own woods.  For the interior finishing chestnut will be used.

November 10, 1922

John Northrup, who now owns the Margaret Hoy farm, is making numerous improvements to both his house and barn. 

George Foreman has moved from his farm at the top of Hobbie Mountain to the Luddington farm at the Hook, which he recently purchased. Unless he can sell it, he will pasture young stock on the Brandow farm on which the house was burned a few weeks ago.

November 17, 1922

Word had been received here of the marriage of William Irvine at Seattle, Washington.

Concrete parapets are being put on the new bridge at the former Strangeway store in the Center.

Roscoe Brown at Lake Delaware, is putting in a new entrance to his cellar and concreting the cellar wall.

Born to Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Russell on November 14, a son.  The mother has been threatened with pneumonia. [This actually was a daughter, Mildred. She died in 1932. Her mother survived the birth and had three more children, dying in 1962.]

Hale Elliott, of Michigan, a former resident of this place, is just recovering from a severe attack of blood poisoning.

On election day the large truck of Milton Hastings, with John Aitkens as driver, went into the ditch and ran off the culvert at Oscar Felton’s and landed on its side.  The frame was badly twisted.

George Cable narrowly escaped a broken leg Saturday while putting some new plank in the Coulter Brook bridge.  In some manner he went thru the opening where he had taken up a plank and the new plant that he was about to put in fell from the saw benches and caught him across the leg between the hip and knee.  Robert Robinson happened along and brought him to the village where he secured a car to take him to his home at Delhi.

Bovina Cows Condemned

William J. Storie, who resides below Bovina Center, had his entire herd of cows and young stock tuberculin tested and nearly half of them reacted.  To be exact out of 46 herd of cows and young stock tested 25 were condemned, three of them being only last spring calves.

November 24, 1922

William Archibald is building an ice house.

Marion Banker, of Andes, is now driving truck for Sheffield Smith.

The making of cheese has been discontinued at the Up-Town Creamery.

A number of the friends of Mrs. Julia McPherson made her a surprise pound party Tuesday.

Arthur Kellam has completed his work at James Barnhart’s and has gone to Johnson City.

Mr. and Mrs. Richardson, of Glen Spey, Sullivan county, were guests at John Blair’s the past week, being accompanied by Mr. Blair’s daughter, Mrs. Marshall Thomson.

Silver Wedding in Bovina

Mr. and Mrs. William T. Miller celebrated the 25th anniversary of their marriage November 17.  About 60 of their neighbors and relatives were present.  The couple were presented with a dozen silver knives and forks.

Monday, October 31, 2022

This Day in Bovina for October 2022

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

138 years ago today, on October 1, 1880, as later reported in the Stamford Mirror, "the Russell boys upset their threshing machine over the bridgeway to Robert Forrest's barn, but fortunately the machine was not much injured."


106 ago today, on October 2, 1916, a milk strike led to the Bovina Center Co-Operative Creamery receiving milk from 37 farms, in addition to their regular patrons. These farms were in South Kortright and Bloomville, as well as above Delhi, on the Little Delaware and at Glenburnie.  The Andes Recorder reported that these farms would continue to send their milk to Bovina “until the question of milk prices is settled.”


Aggie Jeanette Armstrong died 147 years ago today on October 3, 1875.  She was only two months old.  She was the daughter of Frank Armstrong and Jeanette Burns.  She was the second daughter named Agnes that they had lost.  In August 1872, three-day old daughter, Aggie Bell Armstrong, died.


134 years ago today, the October 4, 1888 Hobart Independent in its Bovina column reported "John Hastings and A.T. Strangeway are both building halls. 'Opposition is the life of business.'"


103 years ago today, Sunday, October 5, 1919, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "There was no preaching in any of the churches in Bovina Center last Sabbath – a thing that has happened but once before as far back as runneth the memory of man.”


168 years ago today, on October 6, 1854, Isabella Dickson Cathells passed away at the age of 77. She was married to James Cathells, Sr., who survived Isabella by 10 years, dying in 1864. Both are buried in the Bovina Cemetery.


138 years ago today, on October 7, 1884, the Stamford Mirror Bovina column reported several births: "Orrin Carman smiles - it's a boy. T.K. Hobbie laughs - it's a girl. James Andrew Russell shouts for joy - it's a boy." The sex of these children appears to have confused by the correspondent. In each case he/she got it wrong. Orrin Carman's child born at this time was a girl, Nellie, born on September 11, 1884. Russell's child also was a daughter, Orlena Mae, born September 6, 1884. She would later marry Rev. William Robb. The closest match for the Hobbie child is Rema M. Hobbie, who was born July 16, 1884. He was the son of J.K. Hobbie. Rema was married to Bessie McDonald and the father of Glenn Hobbie (1913-1970).


126 years ago this morning, October 8, 1896, as later reported in the Andes Recorder's Bovina column, "Mt. Pisgah was white with snow, the first of the season. This was followed by a heavy frost that evening."


106 years ago today, on October 9, 1916, a complaint was submitted by the town health officer concerning a nuisance at the lower end of the Bovina Center hamlet. 


Eighty-two years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 10, 1940 Delaware Republican reported that "Mr. and Mrs. John Blair returned Sunday from a week's visit with their son-in-law and daughter, Mr. and Mrs. Marshall Thompson in Manhassett, L.I."


127 years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 11, 1895 Andes Recorder reported on some Bovina people being in New York City. They noted that "Andrew T. Doig and wife" were spending the week in the city. The column also noted that Louise Dennis was in the city the same week "purchasing millinary (sic) supplies."


Seventy-one years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 12, 1951 Catskill Mountain News reported that "Robert Reinertsen of Corinth spent the weekend at the home of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Reinertsen."


129 years ago, the October 13, 1893 issue of the Andes Recorder reported that "T.E. Hastings has sold his store and goods to Andrew Doig, one of Bovina’s young men.  The inventory was taken last week. Mr. H. reserves the right to sell feed." This is now Russell's Store.


Seventy-nine years ago today, the October 14, 1943 Delaware Republican Express carried this Bovina column. 


Rev. Joshua Kennedy died 131 years ago today on October 15, 1891.  He had been pastor of the Bovina Reformed Presbyterian Church in Bovina from 1865 to 1885.  Kennedy passed away in Green Castle, Pennsylvania, the town to where he had retired after leaving Bovina.  See the Bovina NY History blog entry for March 18 ( and for March 24 ( for more information about Rev. Kennedy and his ‘dust-up’ with Rev. James B. Lee.


Sixty-nine years ago today, October 16, 1953, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain News by the paper's Bovina correspondent, "Several Farm Bureau committeemen and their wives from the Bovina area attended the chicken barbecue and membership drive meeting at the Grange hall in South Kortright Friday." One of the couples attending, according to my grandmother’s diary, were Ben and Annabell LaFever.


158 years ago today, on October 17, 1864, Gilbert D. Miller from Company E, 144th NY Volunteers, signed this document authorizing his father, William Miller, to cast a vote in his stead in the upcoming Presidential election. 


132 years ago today, the "Bovina Centre" column of the Delaware Republican for October 18, 1890 reported that "The band have postponed their concert till about Christmas. By the way, our neighboring towns are commencing to realize the fact that we have a band and you can spell it with a big B. every time."


Eighty-three years ago today, the 'Bovina Centre' column of the October 19, 1939 Delaware Republican reported on the return of a couple of travelers. It noted that Alex and Lil Hilson had returned from "their honeymoon at Washington, D.C., and other places of interest." Alex's cousin Jane D. Hilson and her friend Margaret Hotchkin (sister of Jane's future sister-in-law Barbara Hilson) "have returned after spending last week at New York City and the World's Fair."


104 years ago today on October 20, 1918, the first death in Bovina from the “prevailing influenza epidemic” occurred when Mrs. Loron Maxim, passed away at her home on the Hewitt farm up-town.  As later reported in the Andes Recorder, “The remains were taken to Hardenburgh, Ulster County, their former home, for interment.”  The Hewitt farm is now the home of Tom Groves on Mountain Brook Road.


116 years ago today, October 21, 1906, Berry Shaw Miller died. Born in 1837, he was the son of William Miller and Isabella Dickson. He served in the 144th NY Volunteers in the Civil War and suffered after-effects of his service throughout his life. He married Kate Oliver and was widowed in 1892. Berry was active in the Civil War veterans' group, the Grand Army of the Republic, attending numerous reunions. 


Sixty-eight years ago today, on October 22, 1954, the Bovina Fish and Game Club held a dance at the community hall. Here's the ad that appeared in the Catskill Mountain News.  C:\Users\rayla\Documents\Bovina History\Bovina Historian\Blog/


126 years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 23, 1896 Andes Recorder reported that W.L. White has returned from the West where he has been with cows.


111 years ago today, on October 24, 1911, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Andes Recorder, "Thos. C. Strangeway was at Andes on Tuesday and purchased two cows of Will Doig."


127 years ago today, the Bovina column of the October 25, 1895 Andes Recorder noted that "Quite a number of our farmers have sold their butter for 18 and 20 cents a pound.  Not a very high price, but better than many received last year."


Eighty-three years ago today, the Bovina column in the October 26, 1939 Delaware Republican reported that "Mr. and Mrs. C.S. Gladstone and Mr. and Mrs. Robert Hall of Oneonta attended the World's Fair at New York City last week." The same column also reported that "Mr. and Mrs. Henry Monroe and family were at New York City attending the World's Fair."


79 years ago today, October 27, 1943, as later reported in the Catskill Mountain News, “William M. Armstrong, 73, of Bovina Center, died … at Delhi hospital where he had been a patient for one week. Death was caused by arterio sclerosis and acute arthritis." Born in 1870, he was the son of Francis Coulter Armstrong and Jennette Burns. He married Mary Kaufman in 1890. She predeceased him in 1929. They were the parents of three children.


124 years ago today, the October 28, 1898 Bovina column of the Andes Recorder reported that "The village school is prospering finely under the directorship of James Gow, assisted by Miss Nellie Butts.  Some of the boys say that if a boy feels like having some fun in school and jumps over the seat, he very soon learns that he is not the boss."


105 years ago today, on October 29, 1917, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, “The rain on Monday night caused the Pink Street brook to rise so much that the foot bridge on Main street was swept down against the arch bridge and about totally wrecked.  Harry Robinson’s family were taken out of their house at 4 o’clock in the morning in a lumber wagon.  Wood was carried away and several hens were washed out of Gideon Miller’s hen house.”  This postcard view of the stone bridge shows the metal arch railing of the pedestrian bridge on the left. The building beyond is Strangeway's Store, which later became Clayt Thomas's and later still Wayne Gallant's garage and is now owned by Tom Hetterich.


113 years ago in the early morning, on October 30, 1909, Chas McPherson and his wife were instrumental in saving A.T. Doig’s store, later Russell’s, from going up in flames.  As reported in the Andes Recorder, the couple discovered the fire while coming home from a party.  “The fire was on the stoop at the lower side of store and fortunately was discovered before it had gained much headway and was put out before only slight damage was done.  It is supposed that the fire started from a spittoon that had been set out on the stoop the night before and there had probably been fire in it.”


190 years ago today, on October 31, 1832, as later reported in the Delaware Gazette, "the Rev. John Graham was ordained to the office of the holy ministry, and the pastoral inspection of the Association Presbyterian Congregation of Bovina." The paper reported that ministers from Johnstown, Florida (NY), and Albany conducted the services. The paper went on to note that "it being the only ordination which had ever taken place in Bovina, the anxiety to see and to hear brought numbers from different quarters at an early hour, so that the Meeting-house was crowded to excess the whole day…." Graham would stay until the 1850s. More about John Graham can be seen on the Bovina NY History blog at



Thursday, October 20, 2022

Bovina Bicentennial Celebration Thank-yous


I’ve received all kinds of kudos about the Bovina Bicentennial celebration, but there were many hands and minds involved in the success of the day. It's taken me a while to pull it all together - I'm hoping I didn't miss anyone. If I have, let me know.
Brooke Alderson’s major activity was the Bovina Bicentennial Art project. Ten Bovina artists were given old images of Bovina buildings no longer in existence or altered and invited to do their own interpretation of them. These ten paintings were displayed in the hamlet during the celebration at the site where the original structure stood (or still stands). Thank you, Brooke coordinating this project and to Scott Hill, who worked out how best to display these. (The paintings will go on show in the Bovina Public Library with an opening on November 12 from 5-7.) And a big thank you to the artists:
·         Antonio Mora - Strangeway’s Store and later Clayt Thomas’s garage, now home of Tom Hetterich
·         Mike Casey - Hilson’s Store, built in 1867, now Dry Town Tavern
·         Sandra Finkenberg - Kennedy Hotel, demolished in 1960, lot now vacant, across from Brushland Eating House
·         Lizbeth Firmin - Old Jock Hilson Home, burned in 1915
·         Lori Glavin - Creamery in 1943, building was refurbished on the outside a year or so later to its present look
·         Scott Hill - Creamery, original, constructed in 1902
·         Gary Mayer - Scott’s Bridge, built in 1870s, demolished in 1955
·         Rick Mills - Bovina Methodist Church, built in 1849, demolished in 1926, now residence across from Community Hall
·         Cornell Verlaan - J.R. Douglass home, later Alexander Hilson residence, replaced in 1920s with home of Mike and Christine Batey
·         Tim Cunningham - Kinmouth Store, later home of Clark and Gladys Lay, and Tim Cunningham, now home of Betty Powell
Christine Batey made a wonderful homemade sign with the Bicentennial logo that she allowed us to use for a sign on Route 28.
When the Bicentennial celebration had to be put off from its original August 1, 2020 date, one event did take place - a vintage baseball game with the Bovina Dairymen. Thank you to the Dairymen for their continued support and for the games they held during the 2022 celebration.
Molly Brannen’s major contribution was letting us use a field that she hays for the celebration, but she also contributed much to the committee and helping us layout out the parade and the celebration on the flat. And she kept telling me that it was going to be great – and she was right.
Kevin Brown was responsible for the strong showing from the area fire departments and for organizing the traffic patrols and the appearance of the county sheriff on horseback, along with Steve Williamson, the 90-year-old constable from Roxbury. Thanks for his work on this and for providing a meeting place for the committee. And the pump from the 1948 Bovina Fire Truck was a huge hit with the kids!
Donna Dickson-Noonan coordinated the parade organizing on the big day, with help from her husband, Mike Noonan, and her sister and brother-in-law M.J. and Gary Robson. She launched the parade right on time!
Marni Greenberg took on a variety of tasks related to the celebration on the flat, while nudging me to move on certain activities. She really helped to keep me on track. Marni coordinated the vendor set-up and roped her husband, Mel, in laying out the parking near the site. She also created the frame for the sign at Route 28/County Route 6 that Christine Batey made. Marni’s help was invaluable to the success of the celebration.
Thanks to Todd Keister and Lionel Ing for helping with the parking
Lake Jillienne was the perfect site for staging the parade – thank you to Susan LaFever for allowing us to use the site.
Thank you to the Livestock Foundation for allowing us to use the parking space behind and next to the creamery. And we appreciated having Livestock Executive Director Andrea McGinty on the committee.
Roger McIntosh not only gave us permission to use the McIntosh flat, but along with his brother Chuck, helped move stuff to get the site set up. And a big thank you to Chuck for the biggest fundraising event for the Bicentennial, the very successful pie and cake auction held in July 2019.
Samantha Misa used her talents to create and run our children's games at the celebration. Thanks from me and the children. (And remember, Samantha was the creator of the Bovina Bicentennial logo.)
Mary Pelletier and Pam Benson ably organized the music program. A big thank you to them and to all the performers:
·         Emcee Ira McIntosh
·         Dan Finn
·         Timothy Harlo Bray
·         Catskill Music Consort
·         Flutes: Wynne Shilling, Susan Moravek, Jacqueline Yuzzi
·         Oboe: Mel Greenberg
·         Clarinets: Donna Ward, Patricia Reynolds
·         Horn: Albert Vazquez
·         Violins: Marie Tucker, Elizabeth Zimmerman
·         Violins: Katharine Griswold, Penelope Cypress, Elizabeth Collins
·         Violas: Amy Pratt, Jeff Wilson
·         Cellos: Gretchen Becker, Victoria Von Arx
·         Piano: Gina Lefferts
·         Conductor: Nicholas Scarim
·         True
·         Kate Burrascano
·         Mark Pelletier
·         John “Chico” Finn
·         Dan “Johnny Parr” Pelletier
·         Etienne Lytle
·         The College Farm
Sangeeta Pratap helped with the festival on the flat, finding and contacting vendors and helping with the set-up. Sangeeta jumped in whenever we needed and heavily promoted the Bovina Bicentennial Afghan project.
Shannon and Shirley Shoemaker built and set up the I [Heart] Bovina sign. It was a huge hit with attendees, as was the cow with the Bicentennial logo. And thanks to Shannon for putting up the no parking signs on the parade route.
Starting in 2019, a group of knitters/crocheters, coordinated by Susan Yelavich, worked on the Bovina Bicentennial Afghan. Lovingly knitted by Christine Batey, Jan Bray, Linda Dunne, Lori Glavin, Peg Hilson, Sangeeta Pratap and Susan Yelavich, it was raffled off at the festival, proceeds to benefit the Bovina Public Library. The winner was Betty Powell.
Thanks to the Bicentennial committee members
·         Parade Committee: Molly Brannen, Kevin Brown, Donna Dickson-Noonan
·         Bicentennial Festival Committee: Brooke Alderson, Marni Greenburg, Sangeta Pratap
·         Music Festival Committee: Pamela Benson, Mary Pelletier
·         Parking Committee: Todd Keister
·         The Bicentennial committee also included Nick Frandsen, Andrea McGinty, John Salak and Shannon Shoemaker. Thank you to all who stepped in and helped with the success of the celebration.
Thank you to the Delhi Telephone Company for providing the free Wi-Fi access and to Town Clerk Cathie Hewitt, who worked DTC’s Josh VanDuesen (grandson of Clark and Gladys Lay) to allow us to do the Wi-Fi through the town’s router.
Thank you to our Donors, including:
·         Livestock Foundation
·         Jim and Tom Hoy
·         Marian Jardine
·         Richard Davidson
·         Chuck McIntosh, McIntosh Auction Service, for the highly successful pie auction in July 2019
Funding also was provided through two Tourism Promotion and Development Grants from the Delaware County Local Development Corporation.
And thank you to the Bovina Town Board for their continuing support and encouragement.