[Index] [Vital records] [Extracts]

Vital Records Extracted from the Yates County Chronicle

Editor: Stafford C. Cleveland

March - May 1868

5 March 1868

Amzi Bruen, an old and well-known citizen of this town, died on Monday last, at the age of 69 years. He has been a resident of this vicinity for 50 years.

Amasa Holden, an aged survivor of the war of 1812, died at the residence of his son, Charles Holden, in this village on Tuesday night, at the age of about 93 years. He was probably the oldest person in Penn Yan at the time of his death. He was a Drum Major in the war of 1812, and through his long career was an example of honest and simple habits of life.

James Fox, Esq., one of the oldest citizens of Italy, died at his residence in Italy Hollow on Tuesday morning, February 25, at the age of eighty years. He was the father of Alden D. Fox, Esq., the County Clerk, and had been a resident of Italy nearly or quite sixty years. He was always a prominent citizen, and generally the incumbent of some town office until enfeebled by age.

12 March 1868

The Geneva Gazette informs us that Lieut. Commander John H. Reed, whose death by drowning in the harbor of Osaka, Japan, has been noticed in the daily papers, is a native of Geneva. —It will be remembered that he was with Admiral Bell, in the boat that capsized, and lost his life at the same time with that distinguished officer. —Lieut. Commander Reed was appointed to the Naval Academy in 1850, and on the breaking out of the Rebellion was ordered to the Roanoke as midshipman. He soon distinguished himself by his bravery, and was promoted to be Ensign. Towards the close of the war he was commissioned as Lieutenant, and sailed in the summer of 1865, for the China Seas, in the Hartford, the flagship of Admiral Bell. He did good service on that station, and at the time of his death had been promoted to the rank of Lieut. Commander, being then but 25 years of age.

An accident of a very sad and shocking nature took place about 8 o’clock last evening at Hopewell Station on the Northern Central Railroad. It seems that a train, consisting of an engine, tender and baggage car, attempted to force its way through from Elmira to this place. When in the vicinity of Hopewell Station, the train ran into an immense drift, the baggage car being overthrown. The car was crowded with passengers, who were seizing the only opportunity offered them of reaching their destinations. On the upsetting of the car, the passengers, several of whom were ladies, were thrown together in a mass, and the stove, in which there was a good fire, was thrown on them. As a consequence, a few of the passengers were severely burned, and several others slightly. Among those badly burned are Mr. and Mrs. Lewis of Catskill; Mrs. Phillips and child of Barrington, Yates county; Joel Eggleston, Barrington; Lyman S. Briggs, Barrington; and Sarah Ovenshire, Barrington. The following named persons were slightly burned, Michael Walsh, Canandaigua; Dennis Gorman, Andrew Horton, P. Conklin, Thomas Phillips. Mr. Phillips lives in Barrington. The residences of Gorman, Horton and Conklin we were unable to ascertain. Mr. Lewis of Barrington sustained a fracture of the arm, and John Campbell has his left shoulder dislocated. The sufferers were taken to a house in the neighborhood and received every attention that could be given them. A messenger was dispatched to Canandaigua for medical attendance, and Drs. Cheney, Holmes and Swart started at once for the scene of the disaster. We are indebted to the Doctors, who returned this morning, for the particulars of the disaster. —Canandaigua Times, 5th inst.

    The above is the railway casualty of which we were able to give so meager a notice last week. It was by far the worst casualty that has ever occurred on this road. The child which was one of the sufferers has since died, and two of the ladies are not expected to survive. It seems the passengers were huddled in the mail room of the baggage car, and the train must have been going at too great a rate of speed for a track so badly impeded in places by drifts.



Died in Penn Yan, March 10th, Eli Darling, aged 55 years. The funeral will be attended at his late residence to-morrow at 3 o’clock.

Our notice last week of the death of our aged friend, Amasa Holden, proves to have been founded on mistaken information. We are very glad, therefore, to restore Mr. Holden to life, and hope he may live to round out his full hundred years.

Hon. Henry Welles, one of the oldest of our citizens, and for over twenty years a Justice of the Supreme Court, died on Saturday morning last, in the 74th year of his age. The resolutions of the Bar, both here and at Rochester, convey a flattering eulogy on his character, and the address of Mr. Cornwell, which we copy, gives a brief but accurate sketch of his life.

19 March 1868


26 March 1868

One of the persons seriously burned in the car at Hopewell station, Miss Sarah Ovenshire, died on Sunday morning at 10 o’clock. She had been enduring the most intense torture since the occurrence, and lock-jaw having finally set in, relieved her from all further suffering. Mrs. Lewis is in a very critical condition and the prospects do not favor her recovery. Mrs. Phillips is also very low. Messrs. Briggs and Eggleston are regaining their health slowly, and Horton and Brisklin have so far recovered as to be able to leave for their homes. We hope that the death of Miss Ovenshire will be the last of the fatal results we shall have to chronicle. —Ontario County Times

Died, at his residence in Milo, March 2nd 1868, Mr. Amzi Bruen, in the sixty-ninth year of his age. Mr. Bruen was born in the of Newark, NJ, where he resided until his nineteenth year…. He removed to this county in 1819, and settled in the town of Benton. He associated himself with the Presbyterian church at Bellona…and continued … until he removed his residence to the farm on which he died….

2 April 1868


Died at Cascade, Michigan, on the 20th instant, Augusta, wife of James Ansley and daughter of Robert H. and Susan Gardner, aged twenty years and two months. The parties were formerly of Potter, Yates county.

Died in this village on Sunday morning, the 29th ultimo, Mrs. Jane Ingles, aged forty-nine years. For over two years Mrs. Ingles was an intense sufferer from dropsy.

Died in Milo on the 27th of March, after an illness of twenty-four hours, Mary, widow of the late Dr. Jeremiah B. Andrews, aged sixty-four years. The deceased was a daughter of the late Joshua Way, one of the early settlers of this county….

Every week for the past three weeks we have been obliged to record the death of one more victim of the late railroad disaster. Mrs. Lewis, who was so dreadfully burned at Hopewell Station, some three weeks since, died on Saturday morning last. Mrs. Lewis had been a great sufferer, and has been at all times since the accident very low, and until within a few days was expected to recover; but of late no hopes were entertained that such a result would follow, and on Saturday she died. Mrs. Phillips is improving, and is now considered out of danger. The other persons injured at the time are doing well. We trust we have now heard the last of the fatal results of this unfortunate affair. —Ontario County Times

9 April 1868


John Sutphen, for fifty-four years a citizen of Starkey, died very suddenly at his home in Dundee on Saturday evening, March 28th, at the age of seventy-five years.

It was reported during the early part of the week that Mrs. Phillips, who was so dreadfully burned at Hopewell recently, had died of her injuries. We are happy to report that such was not the case, and on the contrary Mrs. Phillips is gradually regaining her health and strength. —Ontario County Times

Hon. John Magee, after a severe illness, the result of a stroke of paralysis, on the 24th instant, died at Watkins, yesterday, at ten o’clock…. [Long obituary from Elmira Advertiser, April 6th] Mr. Magee, it is well known, passed the most of his active life at Bath, and but a few years ago removed to Watkins, to which place his interests were chiefly transferred. The only daughter of Mr. Magee is the wife of S.S. Ellsworth, Esq., of this village.

16 April 1868

A little son, eight years old, of L.D. Fey of Bath, came to his death on Saturday the 4th instant … “He and an elder sister were upstairs at play, when the boy discovered two pistols in a drawer, which he took out and proceeded to examine. One was a single-barreled pistol, the other a revolver … She innocently did as he directed, when the ball which it contained entered his ear and passed nearly through his head, causing almost instant death.” —The Courier

Calvin B. Bliss died at the residence of his father in law Harvey S. Easton, in Penn Yan on Monday the 13th instant, in the thirty-first year of his age. Mr. B. was born in Niagara county in this State. When about ten years of age he removed into Upper Canada, now the Province of Ontario, where he resided until about twenty-one years of age, when he removed to Michigan, and from thence to Venango county, Pennsylvania, where he became successfully engaged in business. For the past three years he has resided in Penn Yan…. About a year ago he left our village with his excellent and amiable young wife for Minnesota….

23 April 1868


The poor brakeman who was injured at the Penn Yan Railway station on Tuesday of last week, and whose case we mentioned in our last issue, died on Friday morning last.

Died in this village, on Friday morning, the 17th instant, Henry M. Stark, a son of Oliver Stark, aged 20 years. … The young man had been ill for two or three days of diphtheria, and was believed by his physician to be getting better, when death suddenly supervened.…

30 April 1868


George Wight, until two years past a citizen of Geneva, died at Auburn on the 20th inst., at the age of 70 years.

Joseph Price, an old citizen of Geneva, died at that place a few days since at the age of about 70 years. He was long a prominent business man of that place.

John W. Chamberlain, a son of Hon. Jacob P. Chamberlain of Seneca Falls, died in that village on the 17th inst. of scarlet fever. He was 29 years of age, and shortly before had lost a wife and child.

Coe B. Sayre died suddenly at his residence in Romulus on last Wednesday night. The disease was cancer in the stomach. Mr. Sayre was born in 1790, and was therefore in his seventy-eighth year. He resided in Penn Yan at one time and was under Sheriff of Yates county. —Geneva Courier

Mr. Kody Higgins, who was injured in Penn Yan a few days since, while coupling cars, died on Friday morning last. Mr. Higgins’ injuries were not at first supposed to be of a serious nature, but he was afterward found to be severely injured, and despite the exertions of his medical attendants, death soon ensued. … Mr. Higgins was intending to be married about the first of next month. —Ontario County Times

7 May 1868

[Extract from the Autobiography of Jacob Knapp, a Baptist preacher at PY]

Mrs. Sarah Jackson, now living near Horseheads, NY, was the first white woman born in Chemung county. She is eighty-two years old and enjoys the best of health. Her husband was the first Sheriff in the county, and her son is the last Deputy Sheriff.


Wm A. Weed, an aged citizen of Benton, died at his home in that town on the 26th of April. He was almost seventy-four years old.

We regret to hear of the recent death of W.W. Hartshorn, an elder brother of James W. Hartshorn, Esq., of Jerusalem. Mr. Hartshorn resided at Flint, Michigan when he died.

Seymour Fairman, one of the victims of the great railway disaster on the Erie road, died at Port Jervis last Friday, and was buried on Sunday by his beloved friends and fellow citizens of Elmira. Mr. Fairman was one of the editors and proprietors of the Elmira Advertiser….

14 May 1868


Col. Ira Davenport, a wealthy citizen of Bath, died in that village on the 2d instant, in the 73rd year of his age. He was for many years a merchant at Hornelsville, and removed to Bath in 1847…. [Long obituary from the Bath Advocate]

21 May 1868


The long anticipated wedding of George E. Poyneer and Emma Birdsell took place last Thursday, and two hearts which beat as one were made one.

Died in Watkins, on the 12th instant, Mrs. Sara C. Tuthill. Mrs. Tuthill was the wife of Capt. Tuthill, now engaged in business here with his brother…. Her illness was of about ten weeks’ duration….

28 May 1868

A very sad and fatal accident occurred in Bristol on Friday last. A little boy about 7 years of age named Wm. P. McDade, while playing with another boy a year or two older than himself, was fatally injured by means of an open pocket knife which he had in his hand…. The funeral of the unfortunate boy, who was a son of Mr. John McDade of Bristol, took place on Sunday last. —Ontario Co. Times