The History of Otsego County, New York


D. Hamilton Hurd

Published by Everts & Fariss, Philadelphia


Jabez BEARDSLEE - Pittsfield

William BEARDSLEE, a native of Stratford, England, emigrated 
to America in the year 1639. His family consisted of three sons, 
viz., John, Joseph, and William. John, of the second generation, is 
supposed to be the father of William, second, who had five sons, viz., 
Ebenezer, John, William, Jabez, and Enos. Jabez lived in Connecticut, 
where he passed his days; to him were born three sons, viz., Abel, 
Abijah, and Enos. Abijah Beardslee, the father of our subject, was 
born in Weston, Fairfield Co., Conn., in 1749. At the age of twenty 
he married Bethiah SHERWOOD.
Jabez Beardslee, an only child of Abijah, was born Feb. 19, 1770. 
His father died during the Revolutionary war, and at the age of eleven, 
being left without any means of support, he was taken into the family 
of his grandfather where he remained until he became able to make a 
start in life for himself. At the age of twenty-one he married Eunice 
SUMMERS; and, in 1799, he moved to the present town of Pittsfield, 
then more familiarly known as Unadilla, and located on the farm now 
owned and occupied by his son Jesse and grandson Augustus, making 
a purchase of 200 acres, for which he paid $2500. In connection 
with carrying on the farm, he conducted a milling and manufacturing 
business to the date of his death. He was an extensive land-holder, 
owning more 900 acres.
To Jabez and Eunice Beardslee were born twelve children, viz., 
Bethiah, who died at the age of two years; Abijah, a very excellent 
man, of considerable wealth, who died at the age of seventy-one; 
Nathan, a distinguished member of the bar, who died Oct. 16, 1831; 
Sarah, wife of Edward C. WILLIAMS (deceased), resides at New 
Berlin; Levi, born 1800, died 1825; Jesse, born 1802; Aaron, born 
1805, died 1864; two, who died in infancy; William, born February, 
1811, died Sept. 4 ,1870; Cyril, born October, 1813, now living; 
Alanson, died in Florida, 1840.
Jabez Beardslee died Oct. 14, 1854, in the eighty-fifth year of 
his age. He contributed largely to school and church interests, and 
was a constant member of the Episcopal church at New Berlin. In 
the year 1814, when the church was erected at New Berlin, he gave 
nearly one-half its entire cost for the purpose; and also, in 1848, 
when the parsonage was given to the society, he owning one-half, 
presented it. He was supervisor seven years, and held many 
prominent positions of trust in the gift of the people.
Jesse Beardslee, at the age of twenty-four, entered into 
copartnership with General Augustus C. WELCH, of New Berlin, 
in the mercantile business, where he remained three and one-half
years. He was with Edward C. WILLIAMS (a brother-in-law) six 
years, after which time he purchased the old homestead, where he 
now resides. In connection with farming he took much interest in 
the cotton manufacture, and assisted in the erection of the Arkwright 
cotton-mills, located on his farm. He was married, Jan. 23 ,1826, 
to Adaline ANGELL. The result of this union was three children, 
viz., Mary Cornelia, Elizabeth Ambrosia, and Augustus J. Mrs. 
Beardslee died September, 1843. In March, 1845, Mr. Beardslee 
married Mrs. Mary Ann HARDAWAY, to whom was born one son, 
Nathan Summers.
Mr. Beardslee has ever been a man of integrity and uprightness 
of character, contributing largely to the church, with which he has 
been connected since childhood. When the new stone edifice was 
erected in New Berlin he gave liberally, furnishing all of the stone 
from his own farm, which has ever been known as the "Garden of 

Excerpt from History of Otsego Co., NY, page 292


Return to Biography Index