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Hamilton Child compiled and published gazetteers for many of the counties of the northeastern states. His Geographical Gazetteer of Jefferson County, N.Y. was published in 1890, but at least some of the information appears to have been collected a couple of years previously. Child sent out canvassers who covered the county, selling advertisements in the book, collecting the biographies found elsewhere on this site, getting orders for the books themselves, and soliciting contributions toward the publishing of the book. These men (probably always men) went from house to house, but obviously did not always get their information first hand.
Therefore, though the business directory contains names of farmers, residents, laborers and other less important people not represented in the biographical section, not all names are given here, either. If you know your ancestor lived in Jefferson County in 1890, and his name does not appear here, it simply means that the canvasser missed him, for whatever reason. If the name does appear, however, it is fairly certain that person lived here.
The directory is organized by township. We have provided a separate page for the Child's business information for each town. These pages can be accessed by he clicks below, or by a click from the town page.
The directory is arranged as follows:
1. Name of individual or firm.
2. Postoffice address in parentheses if different from the name of the town.
3. The figures following the letter r indicate the number of the road on which the party resides, and will be found on the northern map for the northern part of the county, and southern map for the southern part of the county. Where no road number is given, the party is supposed to reside in the village.
4. Business or occupation.
5. A star (*) placed before a name indicates an advertiser in this work.
6. Figures after the occupation of a farmer indicate the number of acres owned or leased.
7. Names in CAPITALS are those who have kindly given their patronage to the work, and without whose aid the publication would have been impossible.
fac. op., factory operative
reg., registered as applied to livestock [thoroughbred]
H.A., heavy artillery
The word street is implied.
Further definitions, not given in the above list:
apiarist = bee keeper, one who harvests honey from his bee hives.
com. traveler = traveling salesman
Dea. = deacon (church)
do = ditto
prec. = preceptress, or headmistress, perhaps head female teacher
sugar trees = maple trees
swarm = bees inhabiting one hive
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County Co-Coordinator Nancy Dixon or
Co-Coordinator Bruce Coyne.
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