Horace Chester
Rene' Treffeisen

Horace Chester, banker, and one of the representative citizens of Schenevus, NY, has 
been a resident of this village since 1864. The Thompson, Chester & Co.'s Bank
was started as a private enterprise under the firm name of Thompson, Chester 7
co. Originally the number of stockholders was ten, and the capital represented
was $250,000. Later it became the property of Mr. Thompson, and Mr. Chester
went to Worcester and established the first bank in that village, named the Bank
of Worcester. This was April 1, 1874, and this bank was conducted as a private
institution until March 1, 1884. At this time Mr. Chester associated with
himself his brother, D. Chester, of Boston, and secured the organization of a
stock company with a capital of $30,000, and secured a charter from the State of
New York. The Bank of Worce3ster thus became a State bank, with M. H. Multer,
as President, and Mr. Horace Chester, Cashier. Three years later Mr. Chester
sold out to Mr. H. H. Wilder, who became President of the institution. This was
September 1, 1886, and on January 1, 1887, after the failure of Peter H.
Mitchell 7 Co., who had succeeded Mr. Thompson in the banking business at
Schenevus, April 1, 1876, Mr. Chester organized a banking and exchange business
at Schenevus, and has ever since then conducted that business with success. It
is now carried on on a firm basis, under the name of Chester Banking and
Exchange Office, and is well patronized by the community. Mr. Chester was
associated with Mr. Hummell in business at Schenevus while he was engaged in
banking at Worcester, so that his residence at this place has really been
continuous since 1864. He has always taken a deep interest in local affairs,
and has contributed in a substantial way to public enterprises calculated to
build up the town. Horace Chester was born in the town of Westford, Otsego County, October 29, 1842.
He there grew to manhood, and secured his early training and education at home,
supplemented by a business course at the Bryant & Stratton Business College, at
New York City. He afterward located at Schenevus, and took charge of the public
schools at that place, and later took charge of the business of the Albany &
Susquehanna Railroad Company at Schenevus, and held his position through the
great Erie war in May, 1870. Soon after he resigned and went into the banking
business, and is now the oldest banker in the county, except Mr. Baldwin of
Cherry Valley. The father of Mr. Chester, Alden Chester, was born in 1802, at Groton, New London
Co., Conn., and was ten years old when his parents came to Otsego County. They
settled on a new farm in the town of Westford, having made the journey overland
with a team. The country was then very sparsely settled, and Mr. Chester made
the town of Westford the scene of his active labors for the rest of his life,
with the exception of two years, which he spent in Schenevus. He died at the
Chester homestead, in the town of Westford, in 1856. He was a mechanic, and
followed his trade of wagon-maker, and was a good workman. He was an upright
and honest man, and as such was well known throughout this section of the
country. Politically, he was in favor of the abolition of slavery, and worked
with the Republican party for the year or two that it existed prior to his
death. He was prominent in local affairs, and took an interest in all reforms
that appeared to him to be of value. Alden Chester was married twice, first to Miss Mary E. Chappel, a native of the town
of Maryland, o fthe state of New york. She died in Westford, at the age of
thirty-four, the mother of one child, Dwight, now married and located on Water
Street, Boston, Mass., and manager for the Aetna Life Insurance Company. Mr.
Chester's second wife was Miss Susan G. Draper, who was born and reared in
Westford, Otsego County, and was a member of an old pioneer family, and a true
and noble wife and mother. She died at the old homestead in the town of
Westford, of paralysis, at the age of eighty-one, on the anniversary of her
birth, May 30, 1892. She was a Presbyterian in religion and a life long member
of the church. Too much could not be said of her as a most excellent woman,
wife and mother. Horace Chester is the eldest of the three children of his mother. His brother,
Arthur Chester, was a prominent Presbyterian minister of Brooklyn, NY. He was
the founder of Bushwick Avenue Church, and was pastor of that church at the time
of his death, which occurred November 18, 1889. The other brother, Alden
Chester, is a prominent lawyer of Albany, where he has been in active practice
for about twenty years. Both the grandfather and the great-grandfather of Mr.
Chester were born in Connecticut, the latter having been a soldier in the
revolutionary War, and dying in his native State. John Chester, Jr., was
married to a Connecticut lady, Miss Fannie Chester, and they came to this State
with their children in 1813, settling on and improving a farm in the town of
Westford, upon which they lived, and died when quite old people. They were
members of the Presbyterian Church. Horace Chester was married, in Otsego County, to Miss Anastasia E. Hill, who was
born in Madison County, and was educated at Franklin Literary Institute, located
at Franklin, Delaware Co, NY. She is an intelligent and accomplished lady, and
has many friends. At the silver wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Chester, celebrated
September 8k, 1892, there was a most happy company collected, and the evening of
that day is one long to be remembered by all who attended. The guests were
prominent people of the village of Schenevus and other portions of the county. Mr. and Mrs. Chester are the parents of five children, one of whom is now deceased.
Those living are: Carey R., in business with his father in Schenevus; he was
educated at the Syracuse University. L. Fannie, and accomplished musician; H.
Coryell and Lola E. Mrs. Chester is the daughter of Rev. s. H. Hill, who for
twenty years was a minister in the Methodist Episcopal Church, his pastorates
being for the most part in Central new York. He was superannuated a few years
before his death, which occurred in 1861, when he was sixty-one years old. Mr.
and Mrs. Chester are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and are earnest
workers in its interest.
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