Gazetteer of the County of Washington, N.Y.
Comprising A Correct Statistical & Miscellaneous
History of the County & Several Towns
From Their Organization to the Present Time
By Allen Corey
Schuylerville, N.Y., 1849 & 50
[Transcribed by Jane Devlin]
This town was formerly called Westfield. It then embraced the present towns of Fort Ann, Kingsbury, Hartford, Dresden & Putnam. It was organized in its present name in 1809. The face of the township is diversified with mountains & valleys, and is the largest township in the County. A large portion of the land is sterile & barren. Wood Creek, the principal streem, runs North & empties into Lake champlain at Whitehall, and for several miles is used for Canal purposes.
A Fort called Fort Ann was erected near the present Village of Fort Ann in 1757. Traces of Burgoyne's road, which was constructed in 1777 may be seen at the present time about two miles South of Fort Ann Village. It was made of logs, &c. During the French & Revolutionary Wars this town was the scene of many a hard fought battle. Several incidents are recored on pages 4th & 5th of this work.
According to the Census of 1845, the population of the town was 3380; males, 1759 -- females, 1621. The number of acres of improved land is 22,987. The amount of Grain raised, as stated in the same work, was as follows: Barley, 19 bushels; Peas, 2148; Beans, 354; Buckwheat, 3121; Turnips, 952; Potatoes, 47,042; Wheat, 2140; Corn, 17,898; Rye, 2094; Oates, 22,352; Flax, 1170 lbs.; Head of neat cattle, 3161. Milk Cows, 1354; Horses, 826; Sheep 15951; Hogs, 1740.
We give below the names of the principal Town Officers since the organization of Westfield. The first annual Town Meeting was held at the house of John Ward on the 22d of January, 1781.
The town of Fort Ann was organized in 1809. It is bounded on the North by Dresden & Whitehall. East by Whitehall & Granville, South by Hebron & Kingsbury, & West by Warren County & Lake George.
The principal officers since the organization have been as follows:
JUSTICES OF THE PEACE
SUPERINTENDENTS OF COMMON SCHOOLS
FORT ANN VILLAGE VILLAGE
This Village is situated on the Northern Canal, about ten miles North of Sandy Hill, & eleven South of Whitehall. It was incorporated in 1820. It contains a Hotel, five Stores, one Baptist, one Presbyterian & one M.E. Church, a Lodge of Odd Fellows, a Tent of Rechabites, & several Mechanics' Shops. The population is estimated at about 600. The Union Church at this place was erected in 1834.
BOOT & SHOE MAKERS
WEST FORT ANN
This place si four miles West of Fort Ann Village, on the North Branch of the Half Way Brook. It contains a Store, a Post Office, two Tanneries, a Plaster Mill, &c, &c.
FORGE & ANCHOR SHOP
This is a small place, one mile South of West Fort Ann. It contains a Store, a Post Office, & several Mechanics' Shops.
$ MERCHANT # Charles THORN $ MILLER # James THOMPSON $ WHEEL WRIGHT # Philander TAYLOR $ TANNER # Ecward GOWAN $ TRIP-HAMMER SHOP, FOR PLATING # KINGSLEY & EVEREST $ BLACKSMITH # G. D. NICHOLDS
At Brown's Corners, one mile West of West Fort Ann, Elias BROWN keeps a Hotel, & Joshua BROWN carries on the Blacksmithing business.
Mt. Hope is about five miles North of West Fort Ann. There is here a store, Furnace & Saw Mill, carried on by Edward WOODRUFF. At South Bay, eight miles North of Fort Ann Village, there is a Store, kept by William STEVENSON; a Grocery, by Philander SOLMANS, & a Blacksmit Shop, by William STEVENSON. There are three Carpenters and ten or eleven Saw Mills in the vicinity.
Comstock's Landing is four miles North of Fort Ann Village, and seven miles South of Whitehall, on the Champlain Canal and Saratoga & Washington Rail Road. There is here a Store, kept by Andrew CLARK, & a Tavern kept by E. R. SCOVILLE.
Fort Ann Post Office, at Fort Ann Village, was established in 1800. George CLARK was the first Post Master. His successors were Joseph M. BULL, Samuel B. SARGENT, Ebenezer BROUGHTON, George CLEMENTS & Isaac CLEMENTS, who is the present Post Master.
West Fort Ann Post Office was established this year (1850). Hiram EVEREST is Post Master.
Comstock's Landing Post Office was established in 1832. Peter COMSTOCK was the first Post Master, L.N. BURNELL the second, Seymour DALEY the third, Jonathan WOODARD the fourth, Charles W. KELLOGG the fifth, and Nathan LONG the sixth, & present incumbent. Griswold's Mills Post Office was established in 1833. Elisha FORBES was the first Post Master, Allen POTTER the second, & Stephen POTTER the third. Mr. P. is the present P.M.
FORT ANN LODGE, NO. 31, I. O. OF O. F.
This Lodge was instituted at Fort Ann Village on the 9th of December 1845. First Officers - A. BARLOW, N.G.; H. B. FAN, V.G.; A. AXTELL, R.S.; O.F. BRIGGS, T. Present Officers -- T.J. WORDEN, N.G.; P.H. LAMB, V.G.; N.W. GROOSEBECK, R.S.; Eli SKINNER, Jr., T. Whole number of initiations, about 100. Present number of members, about 70. This Lodge is named Fort Ann in remembrance of Queen Ann Fort which was situated about half a mile South of the Village.
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
The Methodist Episcopal Church at Fort Ann Village was organized in 1824, and Circuit Preaching established from that time. In 1827 a Church building was erected by the different Churches & Societies, and used by all as a Union House. In 1837 the Methodists sold out their share to the Baptists and built a House of Worship of their own, which, with the bell and other fixtures, cost about $4000, and was legally incorporated as a Church.
The following are the names of different Pastors who have been in charge since the organization:-- Rev's Samuel HOWE, Daniel BRAYTON, Sherman MINOR, Julius FIELDS, Elisha ANDREWS, Jacob BEEMAN, Joseph AYERS, J.B. HOUGHTALING, James COVELL, Abiather OSBORN, Charles P. CLARK, E.B. HUBBARD, Seymour COLEMAN, C.D. DEVOL, Coles R. WILKINS, Christopher MORRIS, & Hiram MEEKER, who is the present Pastor. The present number of members is about 100.
BAPTIST CHURCH AT FORT ANN VILLAGE
This Church was organized at Fort Ann Village in 1822. The following are the names of the Pastors who have served the Church:-- Rev's H. GRISWOLD, Bradbury CLAR, Phineas CULVER, Nathaniel CULVER, Barney ALLEN, Samuel MARSHALL, Amos STEARNS, Daniel HARRINGTON, Joseph B. WILKINS, J.O. MASON, William SMITH, George FISHER, & James L. DOUGLASS, who is the present Pastor. The Deacons who have served the Church are as follows:-- Daniel COOK, Elijah GARRISON, John SIMMONS, Samuel COOK, & Morrel BAKER, all of whom have either died or removed. Present Deacons:-- William BRAYTON, Whitman VAUGHN, Russell WINEGAR, Jason CORNING.
BAPTIST CHURCH AT COMSTOCK'S LANDING
This Church was first organized in 1789 by the name of the "First Baptist Church of Westfield." Rev.Sherman BABCOCK was the first Pastor, and ontinued in charge for several years, after which the Church was for some time without a Pastor, but had occasional preaching by licentiates. In 1807, Rev. David HULBERT became the Pastor and continued as such until 1811, after which James ROGERS, a licentiate, served until 1813, when the Rev. D. HULBERT again supplied the Church. In 1816, Rev. Harris GRISWOLD became the Pastor, and continued as such until 13 Dec 1823, when he was dismissed at his own request. In 1825 Rev. Amos STEARNS became the Pastro and continued until 1830, after which Rev. Barney ALLEN served until 1834. Rev. George WITHERELL succeeded him and remained until 1836, when Elder NORRIS became Pastor. He served until 1834, after which Rev. Levi SCOFIELD became Pastor and continued in charge until 1838, when Elder STEARNS returned and took the Pastoral charge. He remained until 1843. His successor, Rev. Caleb C. GURR, remained until 1846, when Rev. Nelson COMBS took Pastoral charge. He served the Church until 1848, and was succeeded by Rev. Amos R. WELLS, who is the present Pastor.
The first Meeting House, erected in 1807, was located about three miles South-east from the present Church. About three years afterwards the present building was raised and partly finished. In 1844, it was completed in modern style. In 1840, the Church was legally incorporated by the name of the "Second Baptist Church & Society of Fort Ann & Whitehall." The first Deacons were Reube BAKER, Shubal MASON, Truman MASON, Comer MASON. Present Deacons:-- John TURNER, George JOHNSON, Asa P. CHURCH, Reuben BAKER is the Clerk. The present number of members is about 74.
The Presbyterian Church at Fort Ann Village was organized about twenty-seven years ago. It has only about twenty-five members, and they have been without a Pastor for several years. There is also a Protestant Methodist Church a short distance North of West For Ann; but we were unable to obtain any statistics in reference to it.