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-
Eugene-in California.
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 
this place.
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.