Martin B. Luther

Contributed by Rene' Treffeisen

Martin B. Luther, son of Elisha and Love (Coit) Luther, was born in 
Clarendon, Vt., May 12, 1803, the youngest of five children.
When he was twenty years of age, he came with his parents to this
county, and settled in District no. 15, town of Unadilla, on the
farm where they and he lived and died. Mrs. Love Luther died
when fifty-six years of age, and Elisha Luther in June, 1846, at
the age of ninety-one, he having been born December 13, 1755.
They were both natives of Connecticut, and were married in New
London, that State. For some years, first in Connecticut and
later in Vermont, he followed his trades of a tanner and currier
and shoemaker, also serving as an artificer through the
Revolutionary War. After the death of his first wife, named
above, he married Mrs. Lucy (Kelley) Randall, who survived him
many years, and died in 1871, at the age of eighty-five. She was
born May 29 1786. The father of Elisha Luther was Ellis Luther. He was born in Rhode
Island in 1711, and died in Vermont in 1798. He was a son of
Edward Luther, who died in Rhode Island, and was supposed to be
the son of one of the three brothers who came from Wales to
America, though the family originally emigrated to England from
Germany, and was of the same stock as the great religious
reformer, Martin Luther. An old carpenter's square owned by
Edward Luther, bearing the date 1704, is now in the family of
Mrs. Martin B. Luther, and is of course a valuable relic and
heirloom. Also a chest that belonged to Nathaniel Coit (a sea
captain, father of Mrs. Love Luther), which was broken open by
Benedict Arnold's men, when his house in New London, Conn., was
rummage during the Revolutionary War. Captain Coit saved his
house, and perhaps his life, by giving the Masonic sign to a
British officer. Martin B. Luther, as has been stated, was nearly of age when his
parents came into this county. Here he entered the mercantile
business in Sidney, continuing it in Sangerfield, Oneida County,
until failing health obliged him to return home, when he pursued
his favorite occupation, surveying, devoting his leisure hours to
the study of law and medical science. After the death of his
father, he applied himself more to farming. He was a very
prominent man, for many years an ardent Mason, a deep and sound
thinker, fond of science, and a man whose influence was felt in
his community. While he was in most things firm and decided, he
was in all things reasonable and consistent. In politics he was
a Democrat, and was somewhat of a politician. He held to no
church creed, but respected the religious opinions of his
fellowmen. His death took place June 4, 1890. He was married on
the farm where he spent his last days, and in the house in which
he died, to Miss Harriet K. Randall, the youngest daughter of
Eliab and Lucy (Kelley) Randall. She was born in Wardsboro, Vt.,
June 25, 1815, and came to Bainbridge, Chenango County, with her
mother in 1822, removing to Unadilla when her mother married
Elisha Luther, the father of Martin B. After their marriage Martin B. Luther and wife settled on his farm,
where Mrs. Luther still resides. This farm contains 160 acres,
and is well improved, with good farm buildings. Mrs. Luther is
the mother of one daughter, Mary C., who is well educated and has
been a teacher in the public schools. She is an accomplished
young lady, and is a member of the Episcopal Church. Martin B.
Luther was for some years a Justice of the Peace, and Supervisor
of his town; he was a well educated man, and a competent surveyor.
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