Friday, June 26, 2015

GREEN ACRES FRIDAY Alvie Bennett’s Farm, Wawayanda, Orange Co., NY



   “Mr. Bennett was one of the best known farmers in that part of the county, and his uprightness of character and probity had gained for him a host of friends during his long life. He was born in the town of Wawayanda, on the same farm on which he made his home for so many years, and during all that time was looked upon as one of the best types of the solid Orange county farmer.”
    
     [Source Middletown Times Press, Middletown, New York, Friday, August 22, 1890 edition]

That’s just what 3rd Great Grandfather Alvah Bennett’s obituary said. A solid Orange County farmer; what’s that mean? The 1855, 1865 and 1875 New York State Agricultural Statistics gave me a few answers.

During these years Alvie farmed between 90 and 120 acres. His farm included pasture land where the livestock grazed. Hay grew in his meadow grassland. Grandfather planted winter wheat, oats, rye, buckwheat, corn, potatoes and beans. Apple orchards were on the property too. The farm was home to Grandfather’s family and horses, cattle, swine, sheep and chickens.

According to the 1855 Agricultural Statistics dated June 3rd[1] Alvie worked 100 improved acres. He kept 44 acres pasture land the previous year and produced 35 tons of hay from his meadows (28 acres).

He sowed 4 acres winter wheat, devoted 4 acres to oats, 6 acres to rye, 4 acres for buckwheat, 5 acres of corn and 1 acre of potatoes.

Currier & Ives print "The Husking"

Currier & Ives Print
The Husking

His livestock included 2 horses, 3 young pigs, and 4 sheep. The role of the cattle varied. Two working cows did their share of farm chores. There was a 1 year old and 3 older than 1 year. Sixteen milking cows supplied 6,400 gallons for market. Two cattle were killed for beef.

I don’t know whether Alvie or John J. Dolson, the census marshall, determined the cash value of the Bennett farm at $4,800. Livestock was worth $750. The farm tools and implements were valued at $200.

The June 21, 1865 Agricultural Statistics[2] resembled the 1855 census but with a couple differences. Alvie farmed 90 improved acres instead of 100 acres. Fewer acres were dedicated to the pasture and meadow lands. More winter wheat and oats were planted--less rye, buckwheat and corn. The cash value of the farm remained the same but the livestock value increased to $1,100.

The 1865 census inventoried apple orchards on the property. Alvie owned 12 apple trees that year. This census noted he had chickens.

Grandfather grew older and wiser as his farm prospered. By June 8, 1875[3] the cash value of his farm reached $10,000—more than double earlier census years. His increased livestock raised their worth to $2,000. His crops remained the same.

The orchard harvest produced 75 bushels thanks to Grandfather’s 50 apple trees. He also made 2 barrels of apple cider.

The dairy cattle produced 11,000 gallons of milk to be sold at market. The chickens’ earned Alvie $1,500 for eggs.


Resolute, steadfast, fruitful, yes; Alvah Bennett, the best type of solid Orange County farmer!


If you want to know more about Alvah Bennett, look for the Labels tag at the bottom of this post; then click on ‘Alvah Bennett’. This will find 3 earlier posts about Grandfather.


My Ancestry
3rd Great Grandparents Alvah Bennett and Esther Penny
2nd Great Grandmother Fanny Jane Bennett and husband Albert Doty
Great Grandfather Lewis Penny Doty and wife Emily (Wight) Taylor
Grandfather Frank Leroy Doty and wife Viola Lillian Wilson
My Mother
Myself



[1] 1855 New York State Census, Orange Co., Town of Wawayanda, Agriculture and Domestic Manufactures, pgs. 48-52
[2] 1865 New York State Census, Orange Co., Town of Wawayanda, Agricultural Statistics, pgs. 9-12
[3] 1875 New York State Census, Orange Co., Town of Wawayanda, Agricultural Statistics, pgs. 55-58

Thursday, June 18, 2015

TREASURE CHEST THURSDAY After 50 Year Marriage Alvah and Ester Bennett Parted by Death



Alvah and Ester Bennett celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary Feb. 15, 1884. Just 3 ½ months later, May 30, 1884, Ester (Penny) Bennett died. I don’t know who supplied the information in her death certificate but I’m glad they knew the particulars.

Mrs. Esther Bennett's death certificate, May 30, 1884

Mrs. Esther Bennett’s death certificate
Issued by the State of New York

Her age was 70 years, 4 months and 9 days. She was born in Mt. Hope, Orange Co., New York to David Penny and Fanny Smith. Ester’s mother was also an Orange County girl born in Goshen, New York.

I was a little surprised to see her place of death in the Town of Wallkill near Middletown. Alvah and Ester were long time Town of Wawayanda residents. Perhaps one of her children nursed her during her last illness.

Dr. Smiley attended Ester from April 12 to May 29, 1884 and saw her for the last time May 29th. She passed the following morning at 8 o’clock. Grandmother had been sick with a remitting fever and suffered from general debility. Her burial took place a few days later on June 1st in Pine Hill Cemetery. (See TOMBSTONE TUESDAY Alvah Bennet and Ester Penny, Wawayanda, Orange Co., NY by clicking here.)

Five years later, Alvah became very ill. The personal column of the Friday, Nov. 15, 1889 Middletown Daily Press, Middletown, New York published news about Grandfather:

   “Mr. Alva Bennett, of the town of Wawayanda, who had a stroke of paralysis a few days ago, remains about the same.”

The Saturday, Nov. 16, 1889 edition printed:

   “Mr. Alva Bennett remains in the same condition, and is thought cannot survive many days.”

As you can see from his death certificate Grandfather survived many more months dying August 21, 1890.

Alvah Bennett's death certificate August 21, 1890


Alvah Bennett’s Death Certificate
Issued by the State of New York

While his death was recorded in the city of Middletown, Alvah most likely died in Wawayanda at his home. His father and mother were Abraham Bennett and Lydia Schultz. Alvah’s mother was also born in Wawayanda (when Lydia was born Wawayanda was part of the Minisink township).

Ester’s doctor, Dr. Smiley, took care of Alvah from August 5 to August 21,1890 too. The doctor confirmed his death was caused by apoplexy (stroke) and died 1 o’clock in the afternoon on the 21st. Alvah rests beside Ester at Pine Hill Cemetery.

My Ancestry
3rd Great Grandparents Alvah Bennett and Esther Penny
2nd Great Grandmother Fanny Jane Bennett and husband Albert Doty
Great Grandfather Lewis Penny Doty and wife Emily (Wight) Taylor
Grandfather Frank Leroy Doty and wife Viola Lillian Wilson
My Mother
Myself

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

TOMBSTONE TUESDAY Alvah Bennet and Ester Penny, Wawayanda, Orange Co., NY



PINE HILL CEMETERY
Route 6 bordering
Middletown, New York

Alvah and Ester Bennet Tombstone, Pine Hill Cemetery, Rt. 6, Middletown, NY

 
Many years ago I visited my 3rd Great Grandparents Alvah Bennet and Ester Penny at the Pine Hill Cemetery near my home. I was only beginning my genealogy and didn’t know enough to bring a camera with me. How I wish I had taken photographs of their tombstones on that visit!

My husband/photographer and I went back a few days ago and sadly, time has taken its toll on the older tombstones.

The monument originally held an obelisk resting on top. Weather, age or vandals have stolen it from its place. 

Alvah and Ester Bennet Tombstone, Pine Hill Cemetery, Middletown, NY
   
ALVAH BENNET
Born May 12, 1812
Died Aug. 21, 1891

ESTER
Wife of
Alvah Bennet
Born Jan. 11, 1814
Died May 30, 1884

BENNET

Sometimes tombstones are wrong and that’s just what’s happened with Alvah’s death date. 3rd Great Grandfather died August 21, 1890, not 1891. I have his obituary and death certificate verifying this.

If you want to read his obituary, click here.

Alvah was the son of Abraham Bennett and Lydia Shultz born in Wawayanda. David Penny and Fannie Smith were Ester’s parents.

Alvi and Ester wed Feb. 15, 1834. Elder Gabriel Conkling’s Book of Marriages recorded the event.

     “Feb. 15, 1834 Mr. Alvi Bennet of Minisink, Orange Co., New York to Miss Penny of Mount Hope, Orange Co., New York. Fee $3.”

They raised their family in the Town of Wawayanda and became the parents of 12 children:

·         Theodore born Nov. 5, 1835, married Hannah Eudoria Mapes 1866, died June 6, 1919.
·         William H. born June 1837.
·         Fannie Jane born May 15, 1839, married Albert Doty Dec. 22, 1859, died Nov. 22, 1883. Fanny Jane is my 2nd Great Grandmother.
·         Esther Almeda born Dec. 10, 1840, married George W. Horton, died May 8, 1923.
·         Abby Anna born Dec. 28, 1843, married Seth Blizzard, died Jan. 6, 1939.
·         John F. born Oct.1846 married Mary E. Gray.
·         Harriet Augusta born 1847, married George W. Carpenter.
·         Sarah Elizabeth born ca 1849, married Horace J. Doan, died Oct. 8, 1897.
·         Abraham born March 1852, married Mary A. Van Nort, died Dec. 15, 1926.
·          David Winfield born June 16, 1854, married Jennie Louise Smith, died June 19, 1917.
·          Christianna born March 28, 1855, married Charles Doane, died April 16, 1882.
·          Ida L. born Feb. 4, 1859, unmarried, died Nov. 7, 1938.
  
You might enjoy:    (Just click on title)




NOTE: Pine Hill Cemetery was originally known as Dolsontown Cemetery.  


  
This is the view from top of cemetery hill facing Goshen, New York


My Ancestry
3rd Great Grandfather Alvah Bennett and wife Esther Penny
2nd Great Grandmother Fanny Jane Bennett and husband Albert Doty
Great Grandfather Lewis Penny Doty and wife Emily (Wight) Taylor
Grandfather Frank Leroy Doty and wife Viola Lillian Wilson
My Mother
Myself