Township Sections of Mini-Biographies
The History of Otsego County, New York
D. Hamilton Hurd
Published by Everts & Fariss, Philadelphia
E. R. FORD located in this place in about 1825, and succeeded
Beers & St. John, where he remained some time, and afterwards
moved to a location near James McDonald's, and subsequently
erected the building known as the stone-store. Mr. Ford was a
prominent and influential citizen, and did much to advance the
interests of the village. He served several years as supervisor and
justice of the peace, and was also instrumental in organizing the
Albany and Susquehanna railroad, of which he was a director. He
died in 1872*, leaving a widow, Harriet, and the following children,
all of whom except the latter reside in the village: De Witt is a
prominent and active citizen; Sylvester is a boot and shoe merchant,
firm of Gildersleeve & Ford; Clinton C. is a jeweler; E. R. Ford, Jr.,
is of the firm of N. I. & E. R. Ford, drugs; Raymond is in the War
Department, under General Schurz.
* See bio for E. R. Ford. Note discrepancy in death date between
bio and this section (tombstone is July 22, 1873). Eliakim & much of
his family are buried in Riverside Cemetery, Oneonta]
An honored pioneer is Timothy SABIN, who came from Pauling,
Dutchess county, in 1811, and located on premises now owned by
Delos YAGER. He began mercantile business in 1831, and for
nearly ten years conducted a large business. He has two sons
living, E. R Sabin, in the village, and C. B. Sabin, of Galveston,
Texas. The latter is an ex-judge of the supreme court of Texas, and
a leading attorney, and the postmaster in Galveston. Mr. Timothy
is now past the Scriptural age of "threescore and ten," but still
retains much of his youthful vigor, and vividly related incidents
of "Auld Lang Syne."
An enterprising early settler in the village was William ANGELL, who
kept the well-known public-house called Angell's tavern, which
stood on the site now occupied by the Rockwell block. He was a
public-spirited man, and was ever foremost in all matters concerning
the welfare of the village. He was instrumental in building the
turnpike, and in various other improvements was the leading spirit.
He predicted the present prosperity of Oneonta, and was ever
sounding its praises. In the early days much strife existed between
Unadilla and Oneonta, and one day while sitting by the tavern fire
holding an animated discussion with Sherman PAGE, of Unadilla,
as to the relative importance of the two places, he looked out of
the window at the east side of the street, which at that time was a
steep bluff, and said, "Page, the time is coming when that whole
side of the street will be built up," and closed by saying that it was
the best town in the valley. "Yes," replied Page, "it's the best town
to go from that I know of." John TANNER, an active business
man, married a daughter of Mr. Angell. A daughter of Mr.
Angell-Mrs.. Levi TARBOR-resides in Portlandville, and a son-
A prominent pioneer was Asel MARVIN. Two children-Asel
Marvin, Jr., and Mrs. Fitch PARISH-reside in the village.
Worthy and honored pioneers were Solomon and David YAGER,
father and son, who came from Rensselaer Co., N.Y., in about 1806,
and located on lands now owned by Peter Yager, on Oneonta creek.
The following are children of David, viz.: David J. Yager is a
prominent citizen, and has held the office of supervisor, justice of
the peace, etc. He is a coal merchant, and resides in the village of
Oneonta. A daughter-Mrs. H. McCALL-also resides in the village,
Henry in the town, and John D. and Juliana TERRILL in Oneida
county. Solomon Yager and Mrs. James JINKS, children of John
S., are residents of the town.
Daniel PEET, a Quaker, was also a pioneer. Two grandsons, James
T. Peet, a farmer, and Solomon, a mechanic, reside in the town.
A pioneer in this locality was Thomas MERENUS, father of
Jeremiah T. Merenus mentioned above. He was a Revolutionary
soldier, and was taken prisoner and sent to Canada, and together
with others confined under a powder magazine. They were
tunneling out, and the old soldier had fixed a slow-match to blow it
up, but was betrayed by a fellow-captive, and taken out and given
a brutal flogging. He died in this town. George, a brother of
Thomas Merenus, was also a pioneer in this vicinity
Major Asa EMMONS, of honored memory, was an active
pioneer, and owned a carding- and fulling-mill. A son, Carleton
Emmons, a leading citizen of the town, resides at Emmons. Mr.
Emmons was supervisor of Oneonta in 1843, '49, '52, '53
[Note: see bio for Carleton Emmons]
William MERENUS was an early settler on the lands now occupied
by E. D. COUSE. He and his wife were two of seven that organized
a Dutch Reformed church in Oneonta. A son, William, lives in
Sidney, and a grandson is an elder in the Presbyterian church in
WALLING- In the locality now known as Emmons' Station,
Jeremiah S. WALLING was a pioneer. Abner Walling, a son,
lives in the village.
Nathaniel NILES, a Quaker, originally from Rhode Island, but
latterly from Pine Plains, Dutchess county, was a pioneer, and the
homestead is now owned by a son, Hanson NILES.
HODGE- On the banks of the Otego creek early settlers were
Joseph and Ephraim HODGE; Daniel, Ephraim, and Andrew, sons
of Joseph, reside in the town.
Ferrel DININNEY was also an early settler in this town. Two sons,
Ferrel and John, are attorneys in Addison, Steuben county.
SNOW- Prominently identified with the interests of Oneonta is
Colonel William W. SNOW, a native of Franklin Co., Mass., who
located here soon after 1830. He has labored zealously to promote
the welfare of the village, and his fellow-citizens have called him
to occupy many positions of trust ad responsibility. He was chosen
to the coloneley of a regiment of militia, served several years as
supervisor of Oneonta, elected to congress in 1848, and to the
legislature in 1844 and 1870. He was chosen president of the First
National bank in 1876, which position he still occupies.