Notable Americans

From Stephentown Genealogy: Roots & More

Notable Americans Born in Stephentown


State Superintendent of Public Instruction, is a citizen of Oakland. He was born in Stephentown, Renssalaer County, New York, in the year 1819, and was educated in the Renssalaer Polytechnic School, Troy, New York, where he received the degrees of Bachelor of Sci­ence and Civil Engineering ; was three years an assistant in the New York Geological Survey ; graduated in Castleton Medical College, Vermont, in 1842 ; was professor of Chemistry and Physiology in the above-mentioned institution eleven years ; was also Professor of Chemistry and Pharmacy in the Philadelphia Medical College, Penn­sylvania. In 1853 was appointed Professor of Chemistry in the Albany Medical College, and of Chemistry Applied to the Arts in the University ; was Professor of Natural Science in the New York State Normal School, and Chemist to the State Agricultural Society. In 1856 was appointed Professor of Chemistry and Natural History, and of Agricultural Chemistry in the State University of Wisconsin ; also, a Regent of said University ; was one of the Commissioners appointed to make a geological survey of the State ; was three years acting Professor of Chemistry in the Rush Medical College, Chicago ; received the degree of LL. D. from Lawrence University ; in. 1868 removed to California, and in. 1869 was appointed Professor of Agri­culture, Chemistry and Horticulture in the University of California ; in 1875 was elected Superintendent of Public Instruction in this State ; has been President of two State Medical Societies and Vice-Presi­dent of the National Medical Association ; has been a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science since its foundation ; has been a constant contributor to medical and educational literature, and is the author of a work, issued in 1865, entitled " Patrons of Husbandry of the Pacific Coast." Although placed in nomination by the Republicans, Dr. Carr is no politician, and his election by a large majority over a popular man, is an indication that, in making choice of a Superintendent of Public Instruction, the peo­ple considered fitness and capacity as the best tests of merit. Dr. Carr is fortunate in his helpmeet, Mrs. Jennie C. Carr, who is a lady of culture and scientific attainments as an educator, and ably assists him in the performance of his official duties. The Centennial Yearbook of Alameda County, California 1886

Douglas, Amanda Minnie

American Biographical Library The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans Volume 3 D page 288 Douglas, Alanson, lawyer, was born in Stephentown, N.J., Feb. 11, 1779; son of Wheeler and Martha (Ruthbone) Douglas; and a lineal descendant of Deacon William and Ann (Mattie) Douglas, who with two children inmigrated to New England from Ringstead, Northamptonshire, England, and landed on Cape Ann, removing to New London, Conn., in 1640. This William Douglas was born in Scotland. Alanson's mother was the daughter of the Rev. John Rathbone. He was educated as a lawyer and practised his profession at Lansingburgh, N.Y. He was for a time surrogate of Duchess county, N.Y. He was married, June 12, 1808, to Anna, daughter of the Hon. Solomon and Tamma (Thompson) Sutherland of Duchess county, N.Y. Mrs. Douglas died at Irvington, N.Y., Feb. 28, 1869. He was elected cashier of the newly organized Bank of Troy in 1811, and served the bank until 1827, when he went to New York city as cashier of the Chemical bank. In 1829 he returned to Troy and became cashier of the Merchants and Mechanics bank. He resigned in 1886 and was succeeded by his son, Charles Selden Douglas. He thereafter devoted his time to the care of his large private business interests and to the cultivation of his literary tastes. President Van Buren offered him the secretaryship of the treasury in his cabinet, which position Mr. Douglas declined. He assisted in organizing the Mercantile bank, New York city, of which his son, William Bradley Douglas, became first president in 1850. He died at Troy, N.Y., April 9, 1856.


American Biographical Library The Biographical Cyclopædia of American Women Volume II American Biographical Notes J The Chicago Historical Society page 224 d. in Stephentown, Feb. 9, 1845, a. 84; was one of the party who captured Gen. Prescott on Rhode Island, and brought him over to the American camp


Herringshaw's Encyclopedia of American Biography of the Nineteenth Century. Herringshaw's Encyclopedia of American Biography page 194 author, poet, was born Feb. 23, 1840, in Stephentown, N. Y. She has contributed to Frank Leslie's periodicals, is a correspondent of the Springfield Republican; editor of the New York Citizen; and as a poetess and novelist has gained a favorable reputation.


Herringshaw's Encyclopedia of American Biography of the Nineteenth Century. Herringshaw's Encyclopedia of American Biography page 524 lawyer, jurist, congressman, was born July 1, 1812, in Stephentown, N. Y. In 1853 he was elected a justice of the state supreme court; resigned in 1876; and was elected a representative from New York to the forty-fifth and forty-sixth congresses as a republican.

JAMES, Amaziah Bailey,

Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949 Biographies J page 1366 a Representative from New York; born in Stephentown, Rensselaer County, N.Y., July 1, 1812; moved with his father to Sweden, Monroe County, N.Y., in 1814; pursued an academic course; at the age of fourteen was apprenticed to the printer's trade in Batavia, N.Y.; moved to Ogdensburg, St. Lawrence County, N.Y., in 1831 and established the Northern Light, a weekly newspaper; later became part owner of the Times and Advertiser, the Whig paper of the county; captain of the Ogdensburg Artillery in 1836; afterward promoted to major general of militia; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1838 and commenced practice in Ogdensburg; elected justice of the State supreme court in 1853; reelected in 1861 and again in 1869 and served until 1876, when he resigned, having been elected a Member of Congress; member of the peace convention of 1861 held in Washington, D.C., in an effort to devise means to prevent the impending war; elected as a Republican to the Forty-fifth and Forty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1877-March 3, 1881); while serving his second term in Congress was stricken with paralysis, from which he partially recovered; died in Ogdensburg, N.Y., July 6, 1883; interment in the City Cemetery.


Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949 Biographies M page 1575 a Representative from New York; born in Stephentown, Rensselaer County, N.Y., November 17, 1757; during the Revolutionary War served as ensign and later as lieutenant in the Fourth (Second Rensselaerwyck Battalion) Regiment, Albany County Militia, under the command of Col. Killian Van Rensselaer; justice of the peace in 1791; town clerk in 1791 and 1797; member of the State assembly in 1794, 1795, and 1801; appointed brigadier general of militia March 22, 1806; supervisor of the town of Stephentown 1806-1809; sheriff of Rensselaer County 1810-1811; elected as a Federalist to the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Congresses (March 4, 1813-March 3, 1817); member of the board of managers of the Rensselaer County Bible Society in 1815; died in Stephentown, N.Y., August 31, 1825; interment in Old Presbyterian Cemetery on "Presbyterian Hill," at Garfield, in the town of Stephentown, N.Y.

PRATT, Zadock,

Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1949 Biographies P page 1702 a Representative from New York; born in Stephentown, N.Y., October 30, 1790; moved with his parents to Windham (later Jewett), Greene County, in 1802; received a limited schooling; engaged in tanning leather in Greene County, where he established a town called Prattsville; member of the State militia 1819-1823; justice of the peace in 1824; supervisor of the town of Windham in 1827; member of the State senate in 1830; presidential elector on the Democratic ticket of Van Buren [p.1702] and Johnson in 1836; elected as a Democrat to the Twenty-fifth Congress (March 4, 1837-March 3, 1839); elected to the Twenty-eighth Congress (March 4, 1843-March 3, 1845); resumed his former business activities; also engaged in banking and agricultural pursuits near Prattsville, Greene County, N.Y.; presidential elector on the Democratic ticket of Pierce and King in 1852; delegate to the Democratic National Convention at Baltimore in 1852; retired from active business pursuits in 1860; died in Bergen, N.J., on April 6, 1871; interment in the City Cemetery, Prattsville, N.Y.

James J. Brown

Nebraska: the Land and the People: Volume 2 was born at Stephentown, Rensselaer County, New York, January 12, 1832, and he was one of the venerable and honored pioneer citizens of Omaha at the time of his death, in February, 1901. The schools of the old Empire State afforded Mr. Brown his youthful education, and he early gained practical experience by assisting in his father's general mercantile establishment at Stephentown. At the age of eighteen years he was given the management of this store and business, which he efficiently conducted three years. He then felt the lure of the great West, with the result that in 1856 he came to Nebraska Territory and established his residence at Omaha. Here he soon opened a general store in a small building that stood at the southeast corner of Douglas and Fourteenth streets, and in 1866 he removed his store to the three-story building that he had erected for the purpose and that formed the west end of the Caldwell Block.


Colonial Families of the United States of America: Volume 7 ISSUE of Stephentown, New York; b. at Plainfield, Connecticut, 11th December, 1715; d. 12th November, 1792; he removed from Plainfield to Old Canaan about 1746; about twenty years later he removed to what was then Jericho Hollow, Massachusetts, now Stephentown, New York; during the Revolution the cellar of his house was used as the jail; he led a company of thirty Silver Grays in the Battle of Bennington, 16th August, 1777, when the British and Indians sent to seize the stores collected there and were defeated by the Americans under Col. John STARK; m. in 1737, Rebecca WHEELER, b. 26th August, 1718, at Concord, Massachusetts, d. 12th June, 1809, at Stephentown, New York, dau. of Jonathan and Sarah (——–) WHEELER.


Colonial Families of the United States of America: Volume 7 ISSUE b. at Canaan, 10th April, 1750; he removed from Stephentown to Albany, New York, in 1780, where he opened the firm of Douglas and Wheeler with one of his cousins; in 1798 his property was destroyed by fire; he then went to Brant's Ford, Canada, where he remained about a year with the famous Chief of the Six Nations, Capt. Joseph BRANT; in 1799 he removed his family to Canada and settled on the Grand River, where Brantford is now situated; he made his home among the Indians for a few years, but later leased some five hundred acres, lying about eight miles west of their settlement from Brant; he and his wife both d. at the home of their dau. Harriet; he m. 7th August, 1773, at Stonington, Martha RATHBONE, b. 7th August, 1753, at Stonington, Connecticut, d. 1st December, 1837, at Smithville, Canada, dau. of Rev. John and Content (BROWN) RATHBONE.

III. John Hancock,

Colonial Families of the United States of America: Volume 7 ISSUE b. at Stephentown, 26th April, 1776; he was a physician in New York City and d. about 1865; m. Elizabeth WILLIAMS.

Captain Asa Douglas,

Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania, Volumes I-III Douglas Bunting twelfth and youngest child of Deacon William and Sarah (Proctor) Douglas, born in Plainfield, Connecticut, December 11, 1715, married, in 1737, Rebecca Wheeler, and in 1746 removed from Plainfield to Old Canaan, where he resided until 1766, and then removed to what was known as Jericho Hollow, Massachusetts, but which was subsequently included in the state of New York, and is now Stephentown, Rensselaer county, New York, taking with him a company of men from Connecticut, who cleared a tract of land and erected a strongly fortified farm house there, a part of which was used to confine prisoners during the Revolutionary War. He entered the military forces at the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, and was captain of a company known as the "Silver Grays," with which he participated in the battle of Bennington, August 16, 1777, under Colonel John Stark. At the close of the war he returned to Stephentown, and died there, November 12, 1792. By his wife, Rebecca Wheeler, who was born August 26, 1718, he had thirteen children, of whom the first five: Sarah, wife of George Stewart; Asa, Jr.; Rebecca; William; and Hannah, who married Hon. James Brown, were born in Plainfield, Connecticut; and Olive, who married General Samuel Sloane; Wheeler; Jonathan; Nathaniel; John; Benajah; and Lucy, wife of Major Jonathan Brown, were born at Old Canaan.

Captain William Douglas,

Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania, Volumes I-III Douglas Bunting fourth child and second son of Captain Asa and Rebecca (Wheeler) Douglas, born at Plainfield, Connecticut, August 22, 1743, removed with his parents to Old Canaan, when a child, and was reared there. He was the first of the family to locate at Jericho Hollow, now Stephentown, New York, his father following him there in 1766. He, like his father, was a captain in the Patriot Army during the Revolution, and just prior to the battle of Bennington was detailed for a scouting expedition to ascertain the strength and location of the British forces, which was of the utmost importance to his superior officers. At the close of the war he located on his farm at Stephentown, and also conducted a store and forge there. He married Hannah Cole, of Canaan, who died December 24, 1795, at the age of fifty-four years. He died December 29, 1811. They had seven children, viz: Benjamin, born December 1, 1766, married Lois McCay; William, of whom presently; Eli, born September 1, 1769, married (first) Lucy Rose and (second) Elizabeth Wheelock; Hannah, born February 11, 1774, married Hon. John Knox; Deidama, born July 28, 1775, married (first) Azariah Willis and (second) Hon. Daniel Sayre; Amos, born July 21, 1779, married Miriam Wright; Abiah, born December 25, 1780, who married Amasa Adams.

Alonzo Platt, M. D.

American Biographical History of Eminent and Self-Made Men with Portrait Illustrations on Steel, Volumes I-II was born at Stephentown, Rensselaer County, New York, on the 10th day of January, 1806. His father, Judge Henry Platt, was a farmer, miller, and merchant. His mother, whose maiden name was Susan De La Vergne, was a descendant of the French Huguenots. Dr. Platt prepared for college, at the academy of Lenox, Berkshire County, Massachusetts; but, as he was about to enter, he was suddenly attacked with inflammation of the eyes, which compelled him to relinquish the idea of a college course. In 1825 he began the study of medicine and surgery in the office of Dr. Wright, of New Lebanon, New York, remaining two years; he then entered the office of Dr. John De La Mater, of Sheffield, Massachusetts, and continued with him until 1829, in which year he graduated at the Berkshire Medical College. In 1830 he commenced the practice of medicine at Port Gibson, Ontario County, New York, and remained until the spring of 1832, when he removed to Ann Arbor, Michigan. Ten years later, Dr. Platt came to Grand Rapids, where he has since resided. For a number of years, his practice was large and laborious; but, recently, owing to ill health, he has retired from the more active duties of his profession, giving a portion of his time to consultations and to services among the poor, and having charge of St. Mark's Home and Hospital. He has a free dispensary, which is kept up at his own expense. Dr. Platt's first vote was cast in favor of the Whig ticket; since that time he has acted with the Republican party. He is a member of the Episcopal Church, and has been Senior Warden for over thirty years; he is a prominent layman in the diocese of Western Michigan, being a member of the standing committee, and occupying other positions of honor and trust. In the fall of 1832, he married Miss Laurella Smith, daughter of Stoddard Smith, a prominent lawyer of Greene County, New York. Dr. Platt has been assiduous in the duties of his profession, and is regarded as one of the best physicians in Grand Rapids. He is a straightforward, conscientious gentleman of the old school.

'Mr. Joseph Plumbley lived where Mr. Samuel Johnson, and later his son, Harvey Johnson, lived, south of Ebenezer Norton's, on the Goshen road. They had but one child. They moved to Stephentown, N. Y.' Mr. Plumbley married Dolly, daughter of Titus Brown. They both lived to be over ninety years of age. History of Norfolk, Litchfield County, Connecticut, 1744-1900 The Cowles Family

Genealogical and Family History of the State of Connecticut: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of a Commonwealth and the Founding of a Nation. Volume I Sheldon (IV) Isaac , son of John (2) Sheldon , was born and lived at South Kingston, Rhode Island . He was admitted a freeman in 1712 . He died in 1752 . He married (first) Susanna Potter , who died, and he married (second) 56 Sarah - . His will was dated May 3, 1751 , and proved August 25, 1752 . Isaac was executor and residuary legatee. Children, born at South Kingston : Thomas , February 18, 1709 , settled at Pawlings, New York ; Roger , December 15, 1710 , mentioned below; Elizabeth , November 8, 1713 ; Isaac , March 4, 1716 , lived at North Kingston ; John , August 21, 1718 , called "Pedlar John "; Susanna , October 23, 1720 ; Joseph , March 17, 1721 , settled at Stephentown, New York ; Palmer (Valmer or Parmelee), May 16, 1724 ; Benjamin , March 4, 1727 , settled at Stephentown ; child of second wife: Sarah , January 3, 1733 .

Genealogical and Family History of the State of Connecticut: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of a Commonwealth and the Founding of a Nation. Volume I Denison (VI) Daniel (2) Denison , son of Daniel (1) Denison (q. v.), was born December 16, 1730 . He married, July 1, 1756 , Katherine Avery , daughter of his mother's second husband. He settled in Stephentown, New York , about 1773 , and he and his wife were both buried there. He died in 1793 and she died in 1825 , aged eighty-eight. Children: 1. Katherine , born July 24, 1757 . 2. Daniel , September 26, 1758 . 3. Ebenezer A. , January 26, 1760 , mentioned below. 4. Jonathan , May 17, 1761 . 5. George , April 12, 1763 . 6. Griswold , August 21, 1765 . 7. Asenath , February 24, 1767 . 8. 87 David , March 19, 1769 . 9. Latham , March 8, 1771 . 10. A child, born and died August 18, 1773 . 11. Samuel , August 24, 1774 . 12. Elihu , April 14, 1777 . 13. Thomas , May 5, 1779 .

Genealogical and Family History of the State of Connecticut: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of a Commonwealth and the Founding of a Nation. Volume I Ingersoll Zadock (1) Pratt , father of Hon. Zadock (2) Pratt , was born in 1755 ; married, in 1781 , Hannah , daughter of Benjamin Pickett , of New Milford, Connecticut . He was a soldier in the revolution, at the siege of Boston , at Long Island in 1776 , and was taken prisoner at the battle August 27 , and confined in the Middle Dutch Church, New York , in the old sugar house and the Whitby prison ship. After his exchange he returned to the army and took part in the storming of Stony Point in 1779 . He removed, after the war, to Stephentown, New York , and died at what is now Jewett City in 1828.