NORTH NORWICH was formed from Norwich, April 7, 1849. It is an interior town, lying a little north-east of the center of the county, and is bounded on the north by Sherburne, on the east by New Berlin, on the south by Norwich, and on the west by Plymouth. The surface consists of high rolling uplands divided by the valley of the Chenango. The summits of the hills are from 200 to 600 feet above the valleys. The town is drained by the Chenango and its tributaries, Cold and Fly brooks from the west, and Whapanaka and Thompson brooks from the east.
It is underlaid in the north and west parts by the rocks of the Portage and Ithaca groups, and in the east and south parts by those of the Catskill group. There is no stone of any consequence quarried in the town. The soil is a gravelly and slaty loam intermixed in places with clay. It is an agricultural town, the farmers being chiefly engaged in dairying.
The Utica, Chenango and Susquehanna Valley, and the Midland Railroads cross the west border of the town, the tracks of the two roads running parallel and contiguous most of the way.
The population of the town in 1875 was 1,024; of whom 989 were native, 35 foreign, all, except one, white, 520 males, 504 females and 9 aliens. Its area was 16,634 acres; of which 12,239 acres were improved, 3,446 woodland, and 949 otherwise unimproved. The cash value of farms was $808,020; of farm buildings, other than dwellings, $82, 795; of stock, $100,114; of tools and implements, $20,810. The amount of gross sales from farms in 1874 was $81,767.
There are nine common school districts in the town, each of which has a school-house within the town. During the year ending Sept. 30, 1877, there were nine teachers employed at one time during twenty-eight weeks or more. The number of children of school age residing in the districts at that date was 285. During that year there were 4 male and 14 female teachers employed; the number of children residing in the districts who attended school was 237, of whom 13 were under five or over twenty-one years of age; the average daily attendance during the year was 129.562; the number of volumes in district libraries was 85, the value of which was $15; the number of school-houses was nine, all frame, which, with the sites, embracing 1 acre and 89 rods, valued at $555, were valued at $1,785; the assessed value of taxable property in the districts was $608,620. The number of children between eight and fourteen years of age residing in the districts at that date was 100, of whom 97 attended the district school during fourteen weeks of that year.
Receipts and disbursements for school purposes:---
|Amount on hand Oct. 1, 1876||$ 40.84|
|" apportioned to districts||876.60|
|Proceeds of Gospel and school lands||117.09|
|Raised by tax||379.34|
|From teachers' board||182.00|
|Paid for teachers' wages||$1,418.34|
|" school apparatus||2.60|
| " school-houses, sites, out-houses,|
fences, repairs, furniture, etc.
|Paid for other incidental expenses||109.43|
|Amount remaining on hand Oct. 1, 1877||16.45|
SETTLEMENTS.---The first settlements in this town were made in 1794, by some eight or nine persons from Nine Partners, Dutchess county, who purchased the 10th township, or large portions of it, and for whom it was surveyed and divided by Captain John Harris, a pioneer settler in Norwich. Among these persons were Jonathan Dan, Jacob Grow, Jonathan Mead, Jonah Poyer, Abram and Edward PerLee and Isaac Bockee. Jonathan Dan is said to have been the first settler in the town.1 He located on the Smyrna road, on the farm now owned by John W. Sturges. He continued to reside on that place till his death. Among his children were Miranda, who married Jonah Poyer, who lived in this town and in advance life went to live with his daughter, the wife of James H. Smith, in Smyrna. He died Aug. 5, 1870, aged 87; and his wife, Aug. 30, 1854, aged 60. Milton Mygatt's wife, of Smyrna, is a daughter of Jonah Poyer's. Seth and Abijah Dan were also sons of Jonathan Dan.
Jacob Grow settled in the south part of the town, on the farm now occupied by Willard Sage. He afterwards removed to the locality of Polkville, in the town of Norwich, where he was killed while drawing timber, August 20, 1818, aged 53. Sarah, his wife, died March 30, 1813, aged 51. None of the family are left here.
Jonathan Mead settled on the east side of the river, opposite Plasterville, on the farm now occupied by Daniel Fisher, where both he and his wife (Sarah) died, the former May 11, 1800, aged 64, and the latter Feb. 10, 1804, aged 66. His children, many of them, had become men and women when they came here, and some of them were married in Dutchess county. They were Amos, John, Samuel, Thompson, Ruth, Rachel, Sarah, Rebecca. Amos settled in the house next west of the cemetery near the village of North Norwich, where, in 1803, he commenced keeping tavern. This was the first tavern in the town. The house has been changed and modernized and is now occupied as a residence by Morris Furman. Mead sold in 1816 to Edmond G. PerLee, who resided there till his death, June 25, 1859, aged 75; but he did not keep tavern. Mead removed to Marcellus where he and his wife died. His only son, Amos, Jr., who was born Sept. 12, 1794, was the first child born in the town. John married Rhoda Titus, and settled on the river in the north part of the town, on the farm now occupied by Lewis Bryant. He sold that farm and spent the last years of his life in Plymouth, where he died May 18, 1843, aged 78, and his wife, May 30, 1846, aged 78. Samuel married Polly Haight. He settled and lived in various places in the town, and both he and his wife died here. Thompson was a militia general and was taken prisoner at Queenstown during the war of 1812. He married Miriam Haight, sister of Polly Haight, and settled on his father's homestead, where he lived several years. He afterwards removed to the Hall farm, from thence to Norwich, and after several years, when advanced in life, to the West, where he and his wife died. Ruth married Israel Ferris settled on the east side of the river in this town. They afterwards removed to Milo, N. Y., where she died. Rachel married Ebenezer Hartwell in 1795. This marriage was the first one contracted in the town. Sarah married Jacob Grow, previously referred to, who after her death married Sarah Haskell, widow of _________ Borden. Rebecca married Col. Jarvis K. Pike, who served as a colonel in the war of 1812. He settled at Plasterville and afterwards removed to Wisconsin, where both died. Each of the sons of Jonathan Mead kept tavern in this town at the same time, in different localities.
Isaac Bockee owned about 500 acres a little south of North Norwich. He died in the town. He was father of Isaac S. Bockee, who died March 8, 1848, aged 61.
Several families came in the following year (1795,) and settled at the village and along the valley of the Chenango. Among these were Jeremiah and Abner Purdy, Israel Ferris, Ebenezer Hartwell and Judge Joel Thompson, from Dutchess county. Jeremiah Purdy and Judge Thompson were in the town of Sherburne.
Abner Purdy was a native of Horse Neck, near Salem, in Westchester county, and came to North Norwich from Dutchess county. He settled a little east of the cemetery near North Norwich, where Isaac Per Lee now lives, and resided there till his death, July 25, 1821, aged 69. His wife, Hannah Fisher, was the first person who died in the town, and the first person buried in the cemetery near North Norwich, in 1798. He afterwards married the widow Naomi Randell, who died Nov. 30,1847, aged 86, and by whom he had one child, Alfred, who married a daughter of Dr. Miller, of Truxton, and was engaged in mercantile business some twenty or twenty-five years in Norwich. He was Clerk of Chenango county from 1839 to 1842, and removed some four or five years after the expiration of his clerkship to the farm of his father-in-law in Truxton, where he died. Abner Purdy's children by his first wife were Hannah, who married Stephen S. Merritt, who settled and kept tavern in the present hotel in North Norwich, which he built. He afterwards removed to Norwich, where he died Nov. 16, 1854, aged 69, and his wife Sept. 2, 1851, aged 70; Tamma, who married Ammon Merritt, brother of Stephen, and settled, lived and died in North Norwich, the former Aug. 29, 1850, aged 62, and the latter, Sept. 14, 1863, aged 76; Nancy, who married Frederick Sexton, of Sherburne Hill, where both died, the former March 27, 1838, aged 54, and the latter, March 15, 1871, aged 90. Sexton's son Frederick and daughter Tamma, are living on the homestead in Sherburne; Abner, who married _________ Stevens, of Geneseo, where they settled and died, leaving no children; Amy, who married Weeks Smith, settled first in this town, afterwards removed to Richmond, N. Y., and died there; Jemima, who married Elisha, brother of Weeks Smith, and settled in Perry Center, Wyoming county; Polly, who married John Guthrie and settled in Sherburne, where both died; Rachel, who married Reuben Ferris, of North Norwich, where he settled and afterwards removed to Steuben county, and died there; Malinda, who died young and unmarried; Daniel, who married Betsey, daughter of Jonathan Dan, and settled in Plymouth, where both died; Abner, who married Abby, daughter of Joseph Book, and settled first in North Norwich, but removed at an early day to Illinois, and died there; and Smith M., who became a lawyer of distinction in Norwich, where he died March 28, 1870, aged 73. He was appointed first Judge of Chenango county, Jan. 11, 1833, and elected county judge in 1847. He represented the 22d District in Congress from 1843 to 1845. He married Prudence, daughter of New man Gates, of Norwich, who still survives him, and is living with her son, Dr. Charles M. Purdy, of Norwich.
Israel Ferris settled on the Dalrymple farm, about a mile above North Norwich. He was a brother of Benjamin Ferris, an early settler in Sherburne.
Ebenezer Hartwell came from Dutchess county and settled about a mile and a half north of North Norwich village, on the farm now owned and occupied by Milton Bentley. He took up the entire lot comprising some 250 acres, and resided there till his death Dec. 16, 1857, aged 89. In 1795, he married Rachel, daughter of Jonathan Mead; this marriage being, as previously stated, the first one in the town. His wife died May 12, 1845, aged 65. His children were Hannah, who married Horace Flint; Samuel, who married Phebe, daughter of James Purdy, who settled on the place now owned and occupied by Charles Hartwell, at Sherburne Four Corners, where he died Nov. 2, 1868, aged 70, and where his widow still lives; Jonathan Mead, who married Eliza Crandall, cousin of Israel Crandall; Polly, who married Horace Green; Benjamin, who married Philura, daughter of Harvey Talcott, of Smyrna, where they settled, and both of whom are now living in Norwich; Rachel Diantha, who married Josiah Purdy, of Georgetown; Sarah, who married Zenas Wiswell, of North Norwich, and settled in Bainbridge, where she died; Hiram, who married Celia, daughter of David Eccleston, of Preston; Ebenezer, who died unmarried August 26, 1843, aged 26; Thompson, who married Lucy, daughter of Nathaniel Purdy, of Plymouth, settled on his father's homestead in North Norwich, removed in 1863 to Norwich, and thence in the spring of 1879 to Spencerport, where he now resides; Rebecca, who married James Cook, a Baptist minister, of North Norwich; and "Lowvinia," who died, unmarried May 15, 1843, aged 22. Oliver Hartwell, father of Ebenezer, did not come here till some time later. He died here July 17, 1835, at the advanced age of 96 years.
In 1796, settlements were made by John Peck, Jesse Rundell, Gen. Obadiah German. John Peck came from Dutchess county and settled about a half mile south of North Norwich, on the farm now occupied by Lorenzo Reynolds, known as the Bockee farm, from Isaac Bockee, who leased to Peck and his son-in-law, Daniel Fisher, one hundred acres each, for ten years without fee, the condition of the lease being that each should have as many acres of wild land in New Berlin, where Bockee also owned a tract of land, as he had cleared at the expiration of the ten years. Fisher cleared fifty acres, and Peck about the same quantity, but neither lived on their lands in New Berlin. At the expiration of the ten years both removed to Plymouth, where Fisher lived and died, Dec. 20, 1820, aged 63. Peck afterwards removed to Sherburne and died there Sept. 19, 1819, aged 77, and Sarah, his wife, Nov. 3, 1830, aged 85.
Peck's children were Joel, who married his first wife (Huldah) in Dutchess county, and after her death, August 17, 1827, aged 29, married Mercy ____, of Sherburne, and settled about a half mile north of North Norwich, where three of his great-grandchildren now live, and died there Feb. 16, 1852, aged 83, and his second wife, August 9, 1855, aged 79; Polly, who married David Wilber, a pioneer settler in Smyrna; Sarah, who married Daniel Fisher; Northrop, who married a Phillips and settled in Solon, where they died; Nathan, who was a Baptist minister, settled in Solon and died in Cortland county, having lived several years in Nelson, as pastor of the church there; John, who settled and died in New Woodstock, Madison county; Betsey, who married John Nash, and settled in Sherburne, where he died. She removed after his death to Smyrna, and died there. Sarah, after the death of Fisher, married William Harrington, and after his death became the second wife of Peter Cole, who came from Dutchess county about 1796, about the same time as Peck and Fisher, and settled three-fourths of a mile south of North Norwich, on the farm now occupied by Samuel Titus, Jr., and John P. Bellinger, where he and his first wife died. He died April 10, 1844, aged 74, Sarah died on the homestead in Plymouth August 20, 1847, aged 77. John was also a Baptist minister of some note. He was born Sept. 11, 1780, and died Dec. 15, 1849.
Fisher's children were Polly, who was seven years old when her father came here, and married Lyman Cook; Thompson G., who married Catharine, daughter of Russell Wilcox, of Smyrna, settled on the homestead farm, after a few years removed to Smyrna and subsequently to Norwich, to give his children scholastic advantages, where she died, and after her death sold his farm in Smyrna and went to live with his daughter Jane, wife of Cyrus Hartwell in Sherburne, where he died; Rachel, who married Ira Ryder; Phebe, who married Benjamin Phelps; Calvin L. who married Abigail Rogers, settled in Plymouth and after some years removed to Smyrna, where he died Jan. 29, 1868, aged 66, and whose widow is still living at Sherburne Four Corners; John, who married Martha Holmes and settled in Plymouth, where they died; Wilber, who was a physician; and Sarah, who married William Walker and settled in Sherburne, where both are now living.
Peter Cole had an only son, Peter, Jr., who lived several years on a part of the homestead farm and removed to the west part of the State. He had several daughters, one of whom married David Harris, who settled in Plymouth and died March 3, 1852, aged 57. One married a Draper, settled first in Plymouth and afterwards removed to Ohio. Charlotte married Morris Mead and settled in this town, where she died Jan. 24, 1866, aged 57, and her husband Oct. 20, 1867, aged 67. Another married John Rundell, who settled first in North Norwich and afterwards went west.
Jesse Rundell settled in the north part of the town, on the Pugsley farm, which is now owned by Jonathan Slater. He was killed in October, 1802, by falling from the rafters of the Baptist meeting-house, in North Norwich, the construction of which he was superintending. He was twice married. Isaac and Lydia were children by his first wife. Isaac married Sarah Ransom, and Lydia, Elias Kinne, who lived on the flats below North Norwich. His children by his second wife were Darius, Orrin G., Lyman, Clara and William, none of whom are living in this locality.
Gen. Obadiah German came here from Dutchess county and settled on the site of North Norwich village. His house stood opposite the Union church in that village. He was the first merchant in the town and his store was a great place of resort for the towns people. He was a militia general and in his day was one of the most prominent men in the western part of the State. He owned a large tract of land in this town, including the village site, and was agent for wild lands in some of the western towns in the county. He represented this county in the Assembly in 1798-'99, 1804-'05, 1807-'09, and 1818; was United States Senator from this State from 1809-15; and was appointed First Judge of Chenango county March 16, 1814. He is the only person from this county who has attained the distinction of United State Senator. He continued his residence here till his death Sept. 22, 1841, aged 75. His wife (Ann,) died Sept. 13, 1829, aged 61. After her death he married Mary Ann Knight, by whom he had two sons, who went with their mother to Syracuse when young. Among his children by his first wife were Albert, who built and kept tavern in the house now occupied as a residence by Charles Gile, and removed at an early day to Ohio; a daughter, who married Stephen Anderson, settled in North Norwich, and after his death, May 2, 1853, removed to Wisconsin, where she now resides; another daughter who married a noted Methodist minister named Harmon; and Walter, who succeeded his father for some time in the mercantile business here.
Jesse Pike came among the first settlers from Dutchess county, and located where Warren Brown now lives, about two and one-half miles below North Norwich, and died there Sept. 17, 1799, aged 43. His wife (Rebecca,) afterwards married Charles Merritt and removed to North Norwich village, where she died March 15, 1833, aged 69. Pike's children were Jarvis K., Samuel, Jesse, John, Mercy, who married Loren Warner, and Rebecca, who married _______ West, all of whom are dead.
Other early settlers were, Thomas Brooks, Azel Crandall, Nathan Church and sons, Cogshall Wall, Stephen Pugsley, William West, Jacob Cole, the Kinne brothers, Thomas Welling, Cyrus Case, Samuel Haight, Samuel Titus, George and John King, ______ Flagley, and William Tiffany.
Thomas Brooks settled in the adjoining town of Plymouth, and died there Aug. 30, 1822, aged 61. He taught the first school, however, in this town. The school-house in which he taught was located at Sherburne Four Corners, a little east of the cheese factory. It was a log building and stood as late as 1805 or '6, when a frame school-house was built a half mile above, near Andrew Martin's blacksmith shop. Mrs. Samuel Hartwell, who is now living at Sherburne Four Corners, attended school in the old log building about two years before it was superseded by the frame structure. In 1803, when she first attended school, Deacon Adams who lived on Sherburne Hill was the teacher.
Azel Crandall, from Connecticut, settled in the village of North Norwich, where he was engaged in wagon making a number of years, until he became old. After the death of his wife, Philena, Dec. 29, 1865, aged 79, he went to live with his son Marshall in Ohio. Samuel, another son, was a bachelor, and succeeded his father in the wagon business, which he continued till his death, May 6, 1859, aged 53.
Nathan Church and his sons Samuel, Nathaniel, Nathan, Benjamin and William, came from Connecticut about 1816, and settled on what is known as Church Hill, in the east part of the town, where all died except Nathaniel, who was a bachelor, and died at the county-house, and Benjamin, who is still living in the town, aged nearly ninety. Cogshall Wall settled in the west part of the town, within a quarter of a mile of North Norwich, and died there July 30, 1826, aged 62. Elizabeth, his wife, died Dec. 10, 1811, aged 44. Stephen Pugsley settled on the Jesse Rundell farm, two and a half miles up the river from North Norwich, and died there July 21, 1805, aged 78. William West settled where Edward Adsit now lives, in the north part of the town, and died there June 4, 1810, aged 65. Jacob Cole, from Dutchess county, settled on the river road a mile and a half below North Norwich, where Samuel Titus, Jr., now lives, and died there June 3, 1800, aged 94. Rachel, his wife, died June 12, 1808, aged 69. Peter Cole was a son of his, and succeeded his father on that farm.
Stephen Kinne came from Connecticut and settled on what is known as Kinne Hill. Nathaniel, Benjamin and Elias, brothers of Stephen's, came in at the same time and settled in the same locality, some in Sherburne and some in New Berlin. Elias removed in 1810 to North Norwich and settled about a mile and a half below the village, just below the Joseph Cole farm. Benjamin was killed in the war of 1812. Stephen died Oct. 1, 1855, aged 79; and Elizabeth, his wife, May 1, 1822, aged 48. Nathaniel died Feb. 4, 1854, aged 84; and Eunice, his wife, April 13, 1868, aged 89. Stephen, son of Nathaniel, who had ten girls and one boy, is now living in North Norwich. Almira, a maiden lady, who is living with her sister, the wife of George Waters, are daughters of Stephen and are living in North Norwich. Miriam, widow of Benjamin Gorton, who is living three miles north-east of North Norwich, is another of Stephen's daughters. Thomas Welling, who also came from Connecticut, married Priscilla, sister of the Kinne brothers and settled in the same locality as they.
Cyrus Case settled about two miles below North Norwich, on the farm now occupied by his grandchildren, Adelbert and Cyrus Case. He sold his farm to his son Albert, (who died there Oct. 27, 1876, aged 71, and Sylvia, his wife, Dec. 26, 1860, aged 46,) and removed to Sherburne. He afterwards returned to North Norwich village and died there May 12, 1856, aged 83. Roby, his second wife, survived him many years. She died May 17, 1875, aged 80. One son, John W. Case, is living in Norwich. Samuel Haight settled on the east side of the river, near the line of Sherburne, where Mr. Cole now lives, and died there Jan. 9, 1806, aged 68. Deliverance, his wife, died Dec. 6, 1805, aged 69. His children were William, John, Samuel, Lent, Miriam, who married Thompson Mead, a daughter, who married Samuel Mead, and Aner, who married Pardon Morris. Three grandchildren, Deloss, Charles and Almira, are living in North Norwich. Samuel Titus settled in the locality of Plasterville and died there Feb. 5, 1804, aged 64. James Titus, who lived a little above Plasterville, where Augustus Aldrich now lives, and died March 26, 1821, aged 56, was probably a son of his. Martha, wife of Samuel died Aug. 13, 1816, aged 74.2
George and John King, brothers, from Dutchess county, were among the first settlers in the town. They located in the east part of the town, at what is known as King's Settlement, where each raised large families. George died there some thirty years ago. They were the first settlers in that locality. George's children were George, Hezekiah, Benjamin H., Tama, who married Charles Randall, Lottie, who married Elijah Buell, Lavina, who married David Webb, all of whom are dead. The Buells, who came in about 1820, succeeded to their possessions. There are four families of the Buells: Elijah, Simon, George and William Riley, all of whom have families. Rev. Mr. Flagley, a Universalist minister, settled early in that locality, and sold to Benjamin Bloom from Dutchess county, some years after. William Tiffany, from Dutchess county, settled soon after the Kings in the same locality, where his grandson, William Tiffany now lives, and died there. His children were Nelson, Albert, Richard, Lewis and two daughters, one of whom married _______ Gile, and the other, Elijah Buell. Richard and Lewis and Gile's wife are still living in that locality.
Thomas North settled previous to 1805, two and a half miles below North Norwich, on the place now owned by John Mitchell. He removed from the town with his family about 1808. His son Henry, who was a blacksmith, afterwards came back and carried on his trade at North Norwich till shortly before his death, Feb. 26, 1858, aged 61.
Joseph Cook, a native of Connecticut, came from Amenia, Dutchess county, in 1807 or '8, and settled in the north part of the town on what is known as the Middle Road, on the farm now occupied by Stephen Titus, Garry Welton and Ross Cook and his brother George, where he resided till about 1834. His children by his second wife were Lyman, who married Polly, daughter of Daniel Fisher and settled in North Norwich. Abigail, who married Abner Purdy, of North Norwich, where they settled and lived till about 1836. Aaron, who married Lydia Culver, settled in North Norwich, and removed about 1833 to Ohio. William, who married Anna Purdy, settled in North Norwich, and removed about 1837 or '8 to Bainbridge. Spencer, who married Harriet Arnold, settled in North Norwich, and removed about 1836 or '7 to Spencerport. Emily, who married James Arnold, settled in Oxford, from whence after ten or eleven years they removed to Ohio. Eliza Crandall, a grand-daughter of Joseph Cook's, came in with him and married Mead Hartwell, settled in North Norwich, and removed about 1837 to Michigan, where they now reside.
TOWN OFFICERS.---The first town meeting was held at the house of J. C. Tower, but the records do not show when. The following named officers were elected: Carlos K. Pike, Supervisor; ___________ Clerk;3 Ammon Mead and Nelson Tiffany, Assessors; Lewis E. Carpenter, Marmaduke Wood and Benjamin H. Gorton, Justices; Harris H. Beecher, Superintendent of Common Schools; George Buel and Henry Youngs, Commissioners of Highways;4 Ammon Merritt and Joseph Force, Overseers of the Poor; John A. Carpenter, Collector; James A. Brown, Theodore Waters, and Garry Welton, Constables: Charles Ransford, Sealer of Weights and Measures.
The following list of the officers of the town of North Norwich, Chenango county, for the year 1880-81, was kindly furnished us by Perlee E. Shaw:---
Town Clerk---Perlee E. Shaw.
Justices---Peter L. Russell, Lewis E. Carpenter, Almon Cook, E. K. Buell.
Assessors---Solomon Titus, George S. Waters.
Commissioner of Highways---Ben Seymour.
Overseer of the Poor---Albert Glazier.
Constables---A. W. Aylesworth, G. W. Frink, Charles Gile.
Collector---George A. Tiffany.
Inspectors of Election, District No. 1---W. M. Janes, John B. Benedict, John W. Sturgis. District No. 1--L. Skinner, Elijah K. Buell, Lewis Buell.
Town Auditors---Chester Main, Alonzo French, Henry Peckham.
Sealer of Weights and Measures---O. L. Brooks.
Game Constable---Edmond Keeler.
Excise Commissioners---Garry Welton, James Beach, George W. Frink.
The following named persons have held the office of Supervisor in North Norwich: Carlos K. Pike, 1849-'50; Nelson O. Wood, 1851, '4, '6, '8, '64, '5, '6; E. K. Buel, 1852; Benjamin H. Gorton, 1853; Nehemiah Leach, 1855, '62, '3; Almon Cook, 1857, '60; H. H. Beecher, 1859' Thompson Hartwell, 1861; Daniel F. Bissell, 1867; Solomon Titus, 1868; L. E. Carpenter, 1869-'73; John W. Sturgis, 1874-'6; Matthew B. Ludington, 1877;5 Cornelius C. Williams, 1878; Henry F. Bissell, 1879.
North Norwich is situated on the west side of the Chenango, in the west part of the town, on the line of the Utica, Chenango and Susquehanna Valley and Midland Railroads, and is six miles north of Norwich. It contains two churches,6 one district school, one select school, (the latter of which is taught by Miss Harrington,) two stores, a grist and saw-mill, a cheese factory, two blacksmith shops, (kept by Garret Tanner and Charles Brookins,) two wagon shops, (kept by W. W. Green and Charles Brookins,) one shoe and harness shop, kept by William Jaynes, one hotel, kept by Jesse Patterson, and a population of 178.
MERCHANTS.---The first merchant was Gen. Obadiah German, who opened a store at a very early day in a log house on the east side of the river, on the flats near the farm of Daniel F. Bissell, and afterwards in a building which stood just north of the Baptist church. He was succeeded in the business by his son Walter, who built and occupied the front part of the store now occupied by Perlee Shaw. Walter traded till about 1818, after which the store was empty about two years and was subsequently occupied as a school-house a like period. Crawe & Church, the latter from Coventry, traded in the same building about two years, from about 1829, and failed. A man named Tanner succeeded Crawe & Church soon after they discontinued, and after about a year removed to Sherburne Four Corners, where he also engaged in trade. A man named Leek did business here about a year about 1834.
Charles Merritt and Walter K. Sexton commenced trading here as early as 1835, in the building next north of the hotel, now occupied as a dwelling by Peter Russell. They continued some two or three years. Mead Hartwell and William Poyer, both residents of the town, commenced trading in the store now occupied by P. L. Shaw, about a year after Merritt & Sexton opened, and failed after about a year. William PerLee, a native of the town, traded one year, about 1843, and failed.
Noyes Randall, from Pharsalia, commenced trading about 1846, in a small building which stood on the west bank of the canal near the bridge, and has since been removed, and continued some four years. Benjamin Porter, from Coventry, bought his stock and traded about a year, in 1850. He was succeeded in 1851 by James Ludington, Sr., from Plymouth, who in 1854 removed to the Merritt store, and failed after trading there one or two years. Lathrop Rosbrook occupied the Ludington store from about 1856 till his death, Jan. 28, 1860. His nephew, Joseph Rosbrook, sold out the goods in the interest of the heirs, occupying about a year. Lathrop Rosbrook was also engaged in the forwarding business. He was an active, able business man. Benjamin Seymour next did business a few months, and sold his good to Lewis E. Carpenter, a former resident of the town, who traded two or three years.
In 1849, the German store which stood empty from the time PerLee discontinued trading, was formed into a church and occupied by the Methodists about twenty years. At the expiration of that time Marenus Janes opened a store there and traded till the spring of 1872, when he sold to Perlee E. Shaw, who came here from Lebanon, N. Y., and is still engaged in business. The only merchant now doing business here is Daniel G. Figary, who came from Sherburne in the spring of 1868, and engaged in butchering and painting till the spring of 1877, when he embarked in his present business.
With the exception of Rosbrook and Janes and the present merchants, all who have engaged in mercantile business here have failed.
POSTMASTERS.---The postmasters at North Norwich have been too numerous to attempt to trace them from the establishment of the office. The present postmaster is Lewis E. Carpenter, who was first appointed in 1849 and held the office till 1853. He was preceded by Dr. H. H. Beecher, who held it some four years, and was succeeded by Deloss Janes, whom he succeeded May 28, 1861. In 1866 Zenas S. Church was appointed. He was succeeded by Lewis E. Carpenter July 3, 1871, since which time there has not been any change.
PHYSICIANS.---The first physician to locate at North Norwich was probably Daniel Knight, who came here about 1822, from Sherburne, where he had previously practiced, and continued here till about 1842. He did not, however, practice much for several years previous to his removal. E. Wakeley, from Pitcher, came shortly before Dr. Knight left and remained till about 1846. Harris H. Beecher practiced here from the spring of 1848 till December, 1861, when he removed to Norwich.7
The physician now practicing here is Dr. James D. Lewis.
MANUFACTURES.---The first grist-mill on the site of the mill now owned by Lewis E. Carpenter was built by the father of Stephen and Ammon Merritt at a very early day. It had rotted down and was replaced by a new grist and saw mill by Timothy Hunt in 1824. In 1827, James Harvey Smith, the first President of the Bank of Norwich, and son-in-law of Timothy Hunt, built a carding-mill in the same locality, which, about 1854, was converted by Charles Fox, who owned the property a great many years, into the present grist-mill, the one built in 1824 having been torn down because it was unfit for use. Carpenter's mills, situated on the east bank of the Chenango at North Norwich, are owned by Lewis E. Carpenter, who came in possession of the property in 1866, in which year he bought them of John Gile, who had operated them some ten or twelve years. They consist of a saw, grist and cider-mill. The saw-mill, was originally built at an early day, and has been rebuilt from time to time as age demanded, the last time in 1874, when the present mud-sills were put in. It contains one upright saw. The grist-mill contains two run of stones. The original grist-mill stood between the present grist-mill and saw-mill. The mills are operated by water supplied by the Chenango, with a fall of four and one-half feet.
There is little doubt that the first grist-mill in the town, which French's State Gazetteer says was built by Benjamin Hartwell, in 1803, was located on this site. Mrs. Samuel Hartwell, who is the best living authority on this subject, is confident that this is the fact. Benjamin Hartwell was a millwright and she thinks it probable that he built the mill for Merritt. He was brother to Ebenezer Hartwell and came here from Catskill, but did not move his family here till a comparatively late day. The mill which Hartwell built and owned was erected on the west bank of Fly creek about 1815, and was located about a mile above North Norwich, on the farm now owned by Milton Bentley, Sr. A portion of the timbers in the old Merritt mill was used in its construction. It was taken down in 1850 and converted into a horse barn, which still stands on that farm.
The North Norwich cheese factory is owned by White, Smith & Co. of Sherburne. It was built by a stock company fourteen to sixteen years ago and sold by them to the present proprietors. In 1879 it received the milk from about 400 cows.
The Carpenter House at North Norwich was built in 1816, by Stephen Merritt, who kept it till about 1840, and sold it to John White, who also kept it several years. It derives its name from Lewis E. Carpenter, who kept it some ten years, added one story and made other extensive alterations and improvements. He sold it in the spring of 1877 to Charles Gile, who now owns it. It is kept by Jesse E. Patterson, who took possession in the spring of 1877. He came here from Lebanon, where he kept hotel seven years.
CHURCHES.---The Baptist Church was the pioneer religious organization in this town. We have not, however, been able to obtain its records, nor a history of it. French's State Gazetteer says it was organized in 1796, and that Elder Eleany Holmes was the first preacher. Its legal organization dates from April 14, 1802, the year in which their first house of worship was erected. At that date "the members or persons belonging to the Second Baptist Church or Society of Norwich in the 10th town," met at the house of Abner Purdy, and chose Jesse Rundell, Amos Mead and Thompson Mead trustees, to be known as "The Trustees of the Second Baptist Church or Society of Norwich in the Tenth Town on the Chenango River." The proceedings were certified by Amos Mead and Israel Ferris as presiding and returning officers, May 12, 1802, and acknowledged by them before Joab Enos, Judge of the Court of Common Pleas of Chenango county, May 22, 1802. The church is in a feeble condition.
The Methodist Episcopal Church of North Norwich was organized May 27, 1849, by Rev. Selah Stocking, Presiding Elder. At that meeting Daniel Cook was chosen President, and Daniel Cook, Thompson E. Cook, William D. Sacket, John Chase and John A. Cook were chosen trustees, the latter being chosen clerk of the board of trustees. McKendrie M. Tuke was the pastor; William D. Sacker leader; and John A. Cook, recording steward. Meetings had previously been held occasionally in the village school-house by circuit preachers, among whom were Elder Harmon. In 1849, the Shaw store was converted into a meeting-house and used as such some twenty years.
May 10, 1868, the trustees of the "First Baptist Church and Society in Norwich," now North Norwich, sold to the trustees of the "First Methodist Episcopal Church of North Norwich," in consideration of the sum of $600 to be paid out in repairs on the church, an undivided half of the church and ground.
The property is to be kept in repair by the parties mutually, each contributing thereto according as they shall have used it. The undivided half of the church furniture, &c. is also included in the sale. This conveyance was made pursuant to an order of the Chenango County Court of May 12, 1868. It is signed by Samuel Hartwell, Solomon Titus and Charles H. Frink, trustees of the Baptist Church, and was acknowledged before Charles Hartwell, Justice, May 12, 1868.
The church the society now occupies was built by the Baptists in 1802. It originally stood in the cemetery inclosure at North Norwich, and was taken down and removed to its present location 1849-'50.
In 1873, it was separated from the Smyrna charge with which it was previously connected and united with the King's Settlement Church. The pastors since that time have been D. Bullock, who was assigned to the King's Settlement charge in 1871, and was succeeded in 1817, by B. B. Carruth, who remained two years, C. C. Williams, who staid till the spring of 1879, when Albert Loomis, the present pastor, entered upon his labors. March 20, 1879, the value of church property was reported at $1,500; the number of members at 53.
King's Settlement, situated in the east part of the town, about four miles north-east of Norwich, and about eight miles by the traveled road from North Norwich, derives its name from the Kings who settled there at an early day, and contains a Methodist church, a district school, and a saw-mill, owned by Simon Buell, which is the only one remaining of the four or five formerly in operation on that creek. The post office at this place was discontinued about a year ago.
The Methodist Episcopal Church at King's Settlement was legally organized as The Second Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the town of Norwich, March 30, 1835, at a meeting of the inhabitants of this locality, over which Rev. Lyman Beach presided, and of which Benjamin H. King was Secretary. George H. King, John King, Jr., Abraham West, Matthew C. Barr, Arnold Shaw, James Merihew and Benjamin H. King, were elected trustees. It was reorganized May 15, 1843, at which time Rev. C. W. Harris presided.
The King's Settlement charge was formed in 1867, and the first quarterly meeting of that charge was held July 13, 1867. It was constituted by dividing the South New Berlin charge. There were only two members of the quarterly conference besides the preacher, Rev. A. W. Barrows, viz: M. C. Barr, leader and steward and W. R. Buell, steward, only the former of whom was present. It was united with the North Norwich Church to form the North Norwich charge in 1873. The present pastor is Rev. Albert Loomis, who commenced his labors in the spring of 1879. March 20, 1879, the value of the church was reported at $1,500; and the parsonage at $800.
Plasterville is situated on the Chenango in the south-west part of the town, about two and one-half miles below North Norwich. It derives its name from the plaster-mill formerly in operation there, and owned by Theodore Miller, who also owned the other mills at this place and operated them a good many years. He was succeeded in the ownership, about 1845, by ______ Hickok, father of Harry F. Hickok, the latter of whom succeeded his father after two or three years, and continued several years, till March 1, 1874, when the property was sold to Mrs. Cyrus J. Brown, who still owns it.
Theodore Miller kept the first store at Plasterville, from soon after 1830 till he disposed of the mill property, which, together with the store, he sold to Mr. Hickok. There has not been a store there for a good many years and there was never a post office there.
Sherburne Four Corners centers in the towns of North Norwich, Sherburne, Plymouth and Smyrna, and contains a district school, cheese factory, blacksmith shop, kept by Andrew Martin, a cooper shop, kept by Devillo Fairchild, and a population of 61. At an early day this was a place of considerable importance and is distinguished as being the seat of the first newspaper published in Chenango county. The post office here was established April 1, 1870, and Charles Hartwell, who was the appointed postmaster, has since held the office.
The Sherburne Four Corners Cheese Factory was built in 1863, by Lucian Lyon and Isaac Bentley. It is located in the town of Smyrna, and is now owned by White Smith & Co., of Sherburne. In 1879 it received the milk of 600 cows.
The Everglade Cheese Factory, located two and one-half miles north of North Norwich, is also owned by White, Smith & Co., of Sherburne. It was built in the spring of 1870, and in 1879 received the milk of 350 cows.
WAR OF THE REBELLION.---At a special town meeting, held at the house of D. W. Waters, Saturday, Sept. 20, 1862, of which Nehemiah Leach was chairman, and Henry C. Hall, secretary, the following preamble and resolutions were adopted by a vote of 72 to 37:--
"WHEREAS, Certain persons, citizens of the town of North Norwich, for the purpose of procuring volunteers for the army pursuant to the call for 600,000 men by the President of the United States, have subscribed for the payment of money in order to raise an extra bounty of $50 to each man who should enlist from the town of North Norwich after the 21st day of August, 1862, so that the quota of said town should be raised and a draft from persons liable thereto avoided; and,
"WHEREAS, It is just that the said bounty be paid from the taxable property of the town of North Norwich and the persons signing said subscription should be reimbursed the amount they shall pay upon the same; now, therefore,
"Resolved, That in the place of said subscriptions the town of North Norwich pay to each soldier from said town, who shall have enlisted since the 21st day of August, 1862, and has been mustered into the service of the United States, to the number required to fill the quota of said town of North Norwich under said call the sum of $50.
"Resolved, That any person who shall have signed said subscription, by paying the same to Nehemiah Leach, supervisor of said town, shall be entitled to a certificate of the said Leach for the amount paid by him, entitling him to reimbursement of the same with interest, when the same shall have been collected by tax legally levied upon the taxable property of said town.
"Resolved, That Daniel M. Randall, Chas. Haight, and Nehemiah Leach be a committee to determine who are entitled to the said town bounty pursuant to the foregoing resolution.
"Resolved, That the Legislature of the State be requested at its next session to pass a law levying a tax upon the town of North Norwich for the bounties which may be paid to persons enlisting."
At a special meeting held at the same place Jan. 9, 1864, a bounty of $323 was voted to each volunteer accredited on the quota of the town under the call for 300,000 men; and Thompson Hartwell, Nehemiah Leach and Solomon Titus were appointed a committee to raise and pay the necessary amount, and issue bonds in such sums as they deem advisable, drawing seven per cent interest, and payable in three equal annual installments from Feb. 1, 1865. Each person entitles to this bounty was privileged to receive a bond for at least $200.
At a special meeting held at the house of DeWitt C. Dodge, July 16, 1864, it was resolved to raise a bounty not to exceed $500 for each volunteer applied on the quota under the next call, and the committee, of which Almon Cook was made a member in place of Nehemiah Leach, were instructed to issue bonds. At a special meeting held at the same place Aug. 18, 1864, it was resolved to pay to each volunteer credited on the quota under the call of July 18, 1864, not to exceed $1,100 for three years', $825 for two years', and $550 for one year's men. Nelson O. Wood, Thompson Hartwell, Almon Cook, Henry F. Bissell, J. Dakin Reed, Harry F. Hickok and Elijah K. Buell, were appointed a committee to procure volunteers to the number necessary to fill the quota and take all measures necessary in their judgment to that end. It was also resolved to pay to each person furnishing a substitute applied on the quota $600 for three years', $400 for two years', and $200 for one year's men. The Board of Town Auditors were instructed to issue bonds for money procured in pursuance of these resolutions, payable in such sums and at such times (not to exceed five years from Feb. 1, 1865,) as to them seemed most advantageous to the interest of the town. It was further resolved to pay the necessary expenses of the committee and reasonable compensation for services incurred in the discharge of these duties.
The following report was submitted by the War Committee for enlisting men in accordance with the resolution of "Sept. 18, 1864 8:"---
Received as bounty.
|Edward Maloy||$ 100.00||$1,000.00|
|Francis C. Mahew||1,000.00|
|Osee W. Traver||1,100.00|
|A. L. Hopkins||1,100.00|
|Am. J. Aylesworth||1,100.00|
|Wm. H. Mygatt||1,100.00|
|Henry F. Bissell (substitute)||600.00|
|Volunteers Church and Pike||1,246.00|
|Amount paid for expenses incurred in|
|Total amount paid||$17,097.50|
|" " bonds issued||17,088.50|
All enlisted for three years, except George Burley, who enlisted for but one.
At a special meeting held at the house of DeWitt C. Dodge, Saturday, Dec. 31, 1864, the action of the committee who contracted for the procuring of the requisite number of men to fill the quota of the town under the call of De. 19, 1864, for 300,000 men, at a cost of $650 each, for three years was endorsed, and the Town Auditors were instructed to issue bonds for this purpose. The former committee was continued and empowered in case of any future call to furnish the requisite number of men to fill the quota. The thanks of the meeting were tendered to the committee " for their honorable and patriotic action in making contract to fill the quota of the town * * * at the exceeding low sum of $650, thus saving to the town a large sum of money."
The whole number of men furnished by North Norwich in aid of the suppression of the Rebellion was 103, of whom 20 were natives of the town. So far as the records show, 82 enlisted for three years, 2 for two years and 3 for one year.
Statement of bonds paid:---
|17||received||a county||bounty||of||$ 50.00|
They were distributed among the following branches of the service: 1 in the 5th, 5 in the 17th, 1 each in the 44th, 46th, 57th, 91st, 119th, and 161st, 3 in the 61st, 2 in the 89th, 90th, and 146th, and 20 in the 114th infantry regiments; 9 in the 8th, 5 in the 20th, and 3 in the 22d cavalry regiments; 2 in the 2d, 13 in the 4th and 3 in the 5th heavy artillery regiments; and 1 in the Corps de Afric.
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