Township Sections of Mini-Biographies

The History of Otsego County, New York


D. Hamilton Hurd

Published by Everts & Fariss, Philadelphia



BIDLAKE- An honored pioneer in the southeast part of the town 
was Oliver BIDLAKE, who came from Massachusetts in 1790, and 
settled on lands now owned by Moses FLINT, about two miles 
southeast of the village. Three sons, Nathan, Daniel, and Asa, reside 
in the town. The former is a merchant at Westford village, and has in 
all probability held the office of justice of the peace during a longer 
period than any person living in the county. "Squire" Bidlake, as he is 
familiarly called, has officiated in this capacity twenty-eight
consecutive years.
Joshua DRAPER was a pioneer in this locality. He chose a location 
on lands now owned by a grandson, John D. WRIGHT. Fernando P. 
Draper, also a grandson, resides in the village. 
Eliphalet PRESTON was a pioneer in this locality on the premises now 
owned by Lewis E. Preston. Lucy, a granddaughter of this old 
settler, is the wife of Fernando P. DRAPER, mentioned above.
CHASE- The year 1793 witnessed the arrival of many settlers anxious
to locate their homes in this fertile country. Prominent among this 
number was Benjamin CHASE, of honored memory. His sons were 
Benjamin, Calvin, Timothy, Willard, John, Samuel, and William. Benjamin 
died in this town in about the year 1852. His children were Philando, 
who moved to California; George, now residing at Coxsackie; Wesley, 
Ira, Betsey, wife of Hiram PIERCE, and Lucy, all of whom are 
residents of Albany. Calvin and his family removed to Ohio in about 
the year 1835. Timothy died in about 1850, leaving the following 
children, viz.: Sabina, Harriet, wife of the late Mr. COATS, residing 
in this town. Willard was a soldier in the War of 1812, and died in
1866. His children are as follows: John, Samuel G., Jary Miles, Robert,
and Polly, wife of Charles E. TIPPLE, all residents of Maryland; Henry 
resides in Otsego, Edward in Kansas, Almon in Davenport, and 
Daniel in Schoharie county. Of this remarkable family Jary, Edward, 
Miles, Daniel, and Robert all served in the late Rebellion, and were 
honorably discharged at the expiration of the terms of their enlistment.
None of them were wounded. This family gave ten votes for Abraham 
Lincoln each time he was elected, and nine votes for General Grant, 
the father at that time being dead. Samuel was a soldier in the War 
of 1812 and a pensioner. He died in about 1868, leaving children as 
follows: Colonel W .H. Chase, of Washington, Ashley, Reuben, and
Alphonso D., now of Kansas. These three also were in the War of 
the Rebellion, and were honorably discharged. The daughters of this 
family were as follows: Mary, now a resident of Maryland, and Julia, 
wife of William MUSSON, of this town. John and William emigrated 
to the west.
Eli TYLER came from Connecticut in about the year 1799, and settled 
on the premises now owned by Menzo Tyler, a grandson. His family 
consisted of eight children, as follows: Harvey, Horace, James,
Maria, Amanda, Mary A., and Jane. Harvey resides in Albany, at the 
advanced age of seventy-six years; a son, James E. Tyler, resides in 
Schenevus; Amanda, wife of Nathaniel GROFF, lives in this town; 
Mary; wife of the late Hon. George W. CHASE, resides in Maryland; 
Jane is the wife of Elder Lyman WRIGHT, of Binghamton; Horace, 
James, Clarissa, and Maria are deceased.
PATRICK- Still another in the role of pioneers in this locality was the 
father of B. PATRICK. A grandson, Thomas Patrick , son of B. 
Patrick, is one of the influential men of the town. He manifests much 
interest in agricultural matters, and is classed among the progressive 
agriculturists of the county.
BENTLEY- "Bentley Hollow" derived its name from a worthy pioneer, 
William BENTLEY. The old homestead is now occupied by a son, 
Wm. P. Bentley. A brother of William, familiarly known as Deacon 
Bentley, also early located in this vicinity, and was instrumental in 
founding the Protestant Methodist church at Bentley Hollow. William 
H. Bentley, a prominent representative of the Bently family, resides 
at Bentley Hollow (Maple Valley P.O.), is postmaster, and for many 
years has been a successful general agent for mowing-machines, 
traveling extensively throughout the United States. 
DRAKE- Intimately identified with the interests of Westford was Dr. 
John DRAKE, who was born here in 1799. He commenced the study 
of medicine in 1824, with Dr. Burbank of Albany, and took a course 
of lectures given by Professor March and Armsby. On account of 
sickness he returned to Westford, and studied with Dr. Hanna until 
1826, when he went to Castleton, Vt..; attended lectures, and took the 
degree of M.D. He commenced the practice of medicine in Fulton 
county in 1827, but returned to his native town in December, 1829, 
where, for nearly half a century, he performed the responsible and 
arduous duties of a physician. He was married to Miss Perlia JUDSON 
in 1831. She, and five out of eight children, survive him. He was a 
member of assembly in 1837, has been supervisor of his town, 
postmaster coroner, and president of the Otsego medical society 
several times. In all of the various positions to which he was chosen 
by his fellow-citizens, he discharged the duties with great credit to 
himself, and to the satisfaction of his constituency. He died Oct. 23, 
One MANNING was an early settler on the place now owned by 
Jonathan WILSEY. He was a clothier, and contributed to the interests 
of the town. Two sons, Mason and Judson are deceased. Three 
grandsons, John, William, and Joseph, are residents of Maryland. 
Caleb THURBER, from Vermont, was among the early settlers. He 
had a numerous family, only three of whom are now living, viz.: Nathan, 
who resides in Virginia, and two daughters, living in Elmira, N.Y. 
was accompanied into the wilderness by a son named Samuel, who 
remained in the town until 1840, when he removed to East Worcester, 
and died there in about the year 1859. His widow, wife of David HULL, 
resides in East Worcester, at the advanced age of eighty-six years. 
Their children are as follows: E. R Thurbur, resides at East Worcester, 
where he has been a merchant about thirty years; he was succeeded 
by his son, S. M. Thurber, in 1872, who continues the mercantile 
business. D. W. and Nelson Thurbur also reside at East Worcester, 
engaged in mercantile business. George lives in Brockport, Jane in 
Decatur, and Louis in Richmondville.
Samuel HEWITT came into the town in an early day, and located 
where Henry PRINDLE now lives. A grandson, A. C. DeLONG, 
Esq., resides in Schenevus. 
Timothy CHASE was an early settler on lands now owned by a 
son-in-law, Thomas WEBSTER.