The History of Otsego County, New York
D. Hamilton Hurd
Published by Everts & Fariss, Philadelphia
CHENEY, Joseph A., Col. - Otsego
Colonel Joseph A. CHENEY, son of Joseph and Lydia CHENEY,
was born at Fly Creek, Otsego County, Feb. 28, 1807. He attended
the district schools of his native county, and succeeded in acquiring a
substantial business education.
He early manifested an interest in military matters and at the age
of eighteen entered the service as a non-commissioned officer. He
rendered excellent service, and by ability and talent won the esteem
of his superiors; in recognition of his valuable service he was
promoted step by step to the office of colonel, and was in command
of a regiment when the law was repealed. He then reported himself
to the adjutant-general as a supernumerary, together with most of the
other officers of the regiment.
Mr. Cheney was colonel of the 2d Regiment, 2d Brigade, 16th
Division of Infantry of Militia of the State of New York. This
division was commanded by General S. BURNSIDE, now a
practicing attorney in Oneonta. At the time of the election of General
Burnside as brigadier-general in this brigade there were three
candidates, - S. S. BURNSIDE, Colonel CHENEY, the subject of
this sketch, and George WHITE, of Cherry Valley, - each of whom
received six votes. Colonel Cheney withdrew in favor of Burnside,
thus securing his election. Colonel Cheney's love for the military
did not cease with the passage of the law disbanding the military,
and he was often called by his fellow-citizens to act as marshal at
various political and other gatherings.
Colonel Chenry was a Democrat until the campaign of 1856, when
he voted for John C. Fremont, and has since been an active and
uncompromising member of the Republican party. He has ever
manifested an interest in all matters concerning the welfare of his
town, and has officiated in a number of offices within the gift of his
townsmen. During the late Rebellion he notified the adjutant-general
that he was a supernumerary, and that if his services were needed he
was ready to respond to the call of his country, and to strike at the
hideous head of rebellion.
Colonel Cheney has two brothers and two sisters living of a family
of nine children, viz.: Mita C., who married Edward H. PARMELEE,
and is now a celebrated doctress, residing in Laurens. She practiced
with eminent success about four years in the State of Connecticut, and
six years ago returned to her native county, and was present at the
sickness and death of two of her sisters. The daughter of Mita C.
married Henry GARTSEE, who died in Andersonville. She is now
the wife of J. Harvey STEERE, a merchant in Laurens. Mary M.
married Alfred BURNHAM, now residing in Sparland, Ill. She has
been a school-teacher for over twenty years, and has paid for two
farms from the proceeds of teaching. Ebenezer W. resides at White's
store, Chenango county. Stephen P. resides at Fly Creek, on a part of
the original purchase of Joseph Cheney. The following children
are deceased: Samuel W., Celia Ann, Eliza M., and Isaac R. A nephew
of Colonel Cheney, Edward C. PARMELEE, who married Anna
WOODBECK, of Oneonta, resides with him at Fly Creek, and has two
children, - one daughter, Mita E., and one son, Joseph E.
Colonel Cheney now resides on ten acres of land called the
"southern valley view," located on the turnpike between Fly Creek
and Cooperstown, affording a fine view of the valley of the
Susquehanna, and in sight of the spot where Leatherstocking's
house stood, on the banks of Oaks creek, and in view of the Adams
burial-ground, where LEATHERSTOCKING was buried.
Excerpt from History of Otsego Co., NY, page 252
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