JEFFERSON COUNTY NEW YORK
Watertown Daily Times, 8 Sep 1914
Dewey Family Reunion
50 Members Meet at Clayton -- Officers Elected
Clayton, Sept 8 -- A reunion of the Dewey family was held Aug. 31 at
Clayton. About 50 were present. A dinner was served in the dining room of the
Herald House. The afternoon was spent in renewing acquaintances, visiting and
music. Plans were made to continue the meetings yearly and the following
officers were elected: B. J. Greene, president; D. E. Sweet, vice president; C.
R. Eggleston, secretary and treasurer.
Those present were: Mr. George R. Welch, of Rochester; Mr. and Mrs. H. K.
Eggleston, Mr. and Mrs. C. R. Eggleston, Miss Roslyn Eggleston, Mr. and Mrs. D.
E. Sweet, Mr. and Mrs. C. E. Cable and Miss Ruth Cable, all of Watertown; Mr.
and Mrs. M. J. Dewey, Miss Helen Dewey, Charles Dewey and Mrs. Mina Dewey of
Oneida; Mrs. George E. Lewis and Dewey Lewis, of Carthage; Mr. and Mrs. Hartley
F. Dewey and Leland Dewey, of Schenectady; Mrs. Agnes Lewis Washburn, of
Theresa; Mr. and Mrs. John Shultz of Plessis; Mr. and Mrs. L. B. Irwin, and Mrs.
B. A. Brown, of Elmira; Mr. and Mrs. E. A. Green, of Gouverneur; Mr. and Mrs. B.
J. Greene, Miss Elsie Green, Mrs. Edna Greene-Strough, Miss Harriett M. Strough,
Mrs. Minnie Ford-Hagen, Miss Grace Hagen, Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Beckwith, Mr. and
Mrs. Ray Dewey, Mrs. Edgar A. Dewey, Mr. and Mrs. Burt Holloway, Master Lloyd
Holloway, Miss Laura Holloway, and Peter Bretsch, of Lafargeville; Holland B.
Dewey, Miss Lola Dewey, Miss Naomi Dewey, Mrs. Alvin H. Dewey, Mrs. Jennie
Holloway, Earl Holloway and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Grapotte, of Clayton.
Watertown Daily Times, 19 Aug 1915
75 Dewey Cousins Meet At Clayton
Annual Family Dinner and Reunion
H.B. Dewey, Clayton, Pres.
Next Reunion Will be Held at Clayton, Aug. 18, 1916, and It is Hoped to
have 225 Cousins Present
The second annual reunion of the Dewey Cousins was held at the Walton
House, Clayton yesterday. About 75 sat down to dinner and after dinner the
business meeting was called to order by the president, B.J. Green of
Lafargeville, C. R. Eggleston acting as secretary.
After a regular routine of business, a musical program was rendered by
several of the cousins, including vocal solos by Mrs. Virginia Sweet Porter of
Syracuse, Mrs. Agnes Dewey Babcock of Boston, Mrs. Mina Dewey Gallup of Oneida
and several songs and recitations by the younger set present.
Election of officers for the ensuing year was held and M. J. Dewey of
Oneida was elected president; H. B. Dewey of Clayton, vice president, and C. T.
Eggleston was elected secretary and treasurer. The next meeting place will be
Clayton on Wednesday, Aug.18, 1916.
Those present were:
Mr. and Mrs. B. J. Green, of Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. H. K. Eggleston,
of Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. John Shults, of Plessis; Mr. and Mrs. Deal[?
illegible] Welch, of Rochester; Mrs. Edgar Dewey, of Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs.
Fred Bretch, of Alexandria Bay; Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Lewis, of Carthage; Mr. and
Mrs. Jed Hart, of Chippewa Bay; Mr. and Mrs. Clint Dewey, of Remsen; Master
Ralph Dewey, of Remsen; Harrison Cole, of Lacona; Jay Cole, of Williamstown;
Mrs. Edna Strough and daughter, Lafargeville; B. J. Washburn, Theresa; Peter
Bretsch, Lafargeville; Mrs. Mary Green, Lafargeville; Master Earl Bretsch,
Lafargeville; Miss Helen Dewey, Oneida; Miss Frances Babcock, Boston; Mr. and
Mrs. Chas. Grappotte, Clayton; Mrs. Jennie Holoway and Miss Gertrude Holoway,
Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. M. J. Dewey, Oneida; Mrs. Mina Gallup, Oneida; Mrs.
Agnes Dewey Babcock, Boston; Mr. and Mrs. Alton Beckwith, Lafargeville; Mr. and
Mrs. Claude Bretsch, Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. Carl Porter, Syracuse; Mrs.
Ernest Bross[? illegible], Detroit, Mich.; Mr. and Mrs. M. M. Read, Ypsilanti,
Mich.; Mr. and Mrs. C. R. Eggleston, Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Frank Paddock,
Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Ray Dewey, Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. H. J. Welch,
Rochester; Miss Doris Dewey, Schenectady; H. B. Dewey, Clayton; Miss Olive
Sweet, Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. D. B. Sweet, Watertown; Miss Ruth Cable,
Watertown; Roy D. Lewis, Carthage; Misses Naomi and Lois Dewey, Clayton; Mr. and
Mrs. Chas. Cable, Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Harold Dorr, Syracuse; Mr. and Mrs. L.
E. Carlisle, Lafargeville; Mrs. Minnie Hagen and daughter, Lafargeville; Master
Lewis Dewey, Oneida; Miss Roslyn L. Eggleston, Watertown.
In all there are about 225 of the cousins and it is hoped and planned to
have nearly all at the reunion next year.
Watertown Daily Times 12 Aug 1920
Bretsch Family Hold Gathering
Annual Picnic Held Wednesday at Clayton
Clan Enjoy Bean Contest
Frank Bretsch Elected President of Organization -- Many Comical Prizes
Carthage, Aug 12 -- Sixty-five members of the Bretsch clan enjoyed their
annual picnic Wednesday at Clayton. During the morning, music was enjoyed and a
bean contest held. Dinner was served at Ye Walton Inn, at 10.
Following this a business meeting was held and the following officers and
committees chosen for the ensuing year: President, Frank Bretsch, Watertown;
vice-president, Fred Hotis; secretary, Deforest [Bretsch]; treasurer, David
Bretsch; entertainment committee, Mrs. Addison Bretsch, Misses Pearl and Mabel
Bretsch; memorial committee, Alice Schollenberg, Mrs. Harold Bretsch, Mrs.
Addison Bretsch; floral committee, Erma Haller, Mrs. Ada Haller, Miss Mabel
The awarding of the prizes was made as follows: bean contest, Mrs.
Webster Bretsch, can of pork and beans; oldest member present, Mrs. Alice
Bretsch, Hershey bar; youngest member present, Rosalind Bretsch, a bib; couple
longest married, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Bretsch, bouquet of sweet peas; couple most
recently married, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Bretsch, spoon; tallest member present,
Kenneth Bretsch, hump hair pin; shortest member present, Hazel Hotis, yeast
cake; handsomest man, Addison Bretsch, looking glass; handsomest woman, powder
puff, Mabel Martin.
After the award of these prizes, a few musical numbers were rendered by
Hazel Eckert and Mabel M. Martin. The meeting then adjourned.
Watertown Daily Times, 11 Aug 1921
Bretsch Family Meet at Theresa
Fourth Annual Reunion Is Held at Commercial House
Theresa, Aug 11 -- One of the most successful, and, by a considerable
number, one of the most largely attended reunions of the Bretsch family was held
here on Wednesday at the Commercial House, conducted by George Bretsch, a member
and active worker of the clan. Seventy-six members answered in the roll-call
just previous to the dinner hour and that number sat down to the dinner. Frank
Bretsch of Watertown was re-elected president.
The reunion of Wednesday was the fourth annual gathering of the family
and the business meeting was held just before noon in the parlors of the hotel.
At that time the following officers were elected: President, Frank Bretsch of
Watertown; vice president, Fred Hotis, Evans Mills; secretary, D. C. [Deforest
Collins] Bretsch of Great Bend; treasurer, David Bretsch, Redwood. Following the
election of officers a memorial resolution was read and adopted on the death of
Mrs. Minnie Bretsch of Lafargeville.
An interesting program was held following the dinner in which Floyd
Bretsch of Gary, Ind., formerly of this village, gave the address of welcome.
Mrs. Harry Homer read of the Bretsch reunions, after which Myrtle Haller of
Brownville gave a piano solo; there was a recitation by Thurston Eckert of
Lafargeville, a vocal solo by F. Bretsch and a piano solo by Miss Helen Bretsch
of Great Bend. Homer Bretsch of Hasting-on-Hudson gave a complete history of the
Bretsch family and this was followed by a reading by Mrs. George Eckert of
Lafargeville and a vote of thanks to Mr. and Mrs. George Bretsch of the
Commercial House for the splendid manner in which they were entertained for the
Prizes were offered and the oldest member present was Mrs. Alice Bretsch
of Lafargeville and the youngest was Rosalind Bretsch, daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
Addison Bretsch of Omar. The newest married couple was Mr. and Mrs. Harry Homer
of Syracuse. Gus Wetterhahn of New York City came the farthest to attend the
reunion. The tallest member present was Kenneth Bretsch of Lafargeville and the
shortest was Frank Bretsch of Watertown.
The Bretsch family have not traced their history back so very far as yet
but are adding to their records year by year. Their history shows that the
Bretsch fathers came out of Germany in the early days of the last century,
probably about 1834. [Transcriber's note: Philip Bretsch, son of Adam Bretsch,
arrived in New York City from Bremen, Germany (port of departure) on 9 Aug 1834,
preceding the rest of the family by three years.] They came up the Hudson from
New York by boat and the passage west was by the Erie canal as far as the
waterway was in operation. They came to Lake Ontario and took passage down the
lake to Clayton and went overland to Lafargeville. They have been largely
tillers of the soil in that early period of their history here.
All were agreed that the reunion Wednesday was by far and away the best
in attendance and program features, and perfect weather gave an added delight to
the reunion day.
Watertown Daily Times 10 Aug 1922
Many Awards Made At Annual Reunion of Bretsch Family
Program Presented at Grange Hall in Theresa
Theresa, Aug. 10 -- While not quite as largely attended as the reunion of
last year, yet those who were at the Bretsch family reunion Wednesday in this
village were ready to say that it was the best reunion in their history. Dinner
was served at the Commercial House by Charles Keller [? illegible], the
landlord. The business meeting was held prior to the dinner and was held in the
grange hall which is the next block to the hotel.
In the afternoon a full program was given in the grange hall and prizes
were awarded. The prize to the couple present who had been married the longest
went to Mr. and Mrs. George Bretsch, who have been married 47 years. Mr. and
Mrs. Kenneth Bretsch won the prize for being the most recently married couple
present. When the committee looked about for the heaviest person present they
awarded Mrs. Deforest Bretsch of Great Bend the prize, and Mrs. Webster Bretsch
received the prize for the lightest person present. The prize awarded to the
person who had the hardest time in getting to the reunion went to Mrs. Alice
Schollenberg of Omar, who had many disappointments in the manner in which she
would get to Theresa. For the couple having the largest family at the reunion,
Mr. and Mrs. George B. Eckert, Lafargeville, drew the prize with four children.
The prize to the person coming the farthest to attend went to Albert Bretsch of
The program contained several interesting numbers. Mrs. Alice Bretsch of
Lafargeville told many things about the family and this was followed by a
recitation by Hazel Hotis of Evans Mills. After a humorous solo by Glenn Bretsch
of Clayton, George W. Bretsch of this village gave an interesting talk on "Fifty
Years Ago." There was a vocal solo by Mrs. Webster Bretsch of Lafargeville and a
little play given by Mrs. Charles Schollenberg of Omar and Mildred Bretsch of
Clayton. George W. Bretsch of this village, the new president, is already making
plans for next year's meeting.
Watertown Daily Times 23 Aug 1926
50 Attend the Bretsch Reunion
Gathering Held At Alexandria Bay
D. C. Bretsch Heads Clan
Great Bend Man Chosen President at Ninth Reunion of Family --
Interesting Program Held
Alexandria Bay, Aug 12 -- Fifty were present at the ninth annual Bretsch
reunion held Wednesday at the New St. Lawrence Inn.
At the business meeting at noon the following officers were elected:
President, D. C. Bretsch, Great Bend; vice president, J. S. Getman,
Lafargeville; secretary, Irma Haller, Carthage; treasurer, Mrs. A. P. Bretsch,
After dinner a social time and program were enjoyed. A poem written by
the late Mrs. Alice Bretsch of Lafargeville on her 18th birthday was read by
Miss Mildred Bretsch of Clayton. Mrs. Fred Hotis of Evans Mills entertained with
some Bretsch gossip. Mrs. Charles Schollenberg of Fishers Landing gave a
humorous reading. Homer Bretsch of Hastings-on-Hudson revealed some interesting
facts concerning the Bretsch family tree which he is studying.
Prizes were awarded as follows: the oldest, Fred Bretsch of Alexandria
Bay, who is 73; the youngest, Helen Dorr of Depauville, who is four years old;
the longest married couple, Mr. and Mrs. Adam Dorr of Depauville, who have been
married 45 years; recently married couple, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Felt of
Watertown who have been married three years; the tallest man, Kenneth Bretsch of
Lafargeville; one who came longest distance, Homer Bretsch of
Hastings-on-Hudson; one who came shortest distance, Fred Bretsch of Alexandria
Bay; largest family present, Mr. and Mrs. J. S. Getman and three children, of
Lafargeville; latest owner of a car, Mrs. Harriet Bretsch of Lafargeville.
The following were present: Mr. and Mrs. Charles Bretsch and daughter,
Mildred, of Clayton; George Bretsch of Theresa; Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Bretsch,
Mrs. Harriet Bretsch and two sons, Lawrence and Howard; Mr. and Mrs. A. P.
Bretsch and daughter Kathleen; Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Getman and three sons, Carl,
Frank, Paul; Mr. and Mrs. George B. Eckhert and two sons of Lafargeville; Mr.
and Mrs. Homer Bretsch and two daughters, Eleanor and Marion of
Hasting-on-Hudson; Mr. and Mrs. Peter Bretsch of Plessis, Mr. and Mrs. D. C.
Bretsch of Great Bend; Mr. and Mrs. Claude Dorr and daughter Helen, of
Depauville; Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Payne and daughter, Margaret, Mr. and Mrs.
David Bretsch of Redwood; Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hotis of Felts Mills; Mr. and Mrs.
Charles Schollenberg of Fishers Landing; Frank Haller, Miss Irma Haller of
Carthage, and Fred Bretsch of Alexandria Bay.
Watertown Daily Times, 17 June 1921
Hagen Family Reunion
Omar, June 17 -- The annual Hagen family reunion was held at the home of
Mr. and Mrs. Lester Walts on Saturday, Jun 11. Seventy people were present at
noon when the dinner was served. The remainder of the day was spent in visiting
and renewing acquaintances. The reunion next year will be held at the house of
Mr. and Mrs. Edwin Witt of Dexter, June 17.
Those present were Mrs. Margaret Wilson and son, Robert, Dexter; Mrs.
Minnie Hagan and daughter, Grace, Mrs. Blanche Haas, Mr. and Mrs. James Barton,
Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Myers and daughter Marion, Mrs. Della Klock and daughter,
Fern, Lafargeville; Mrs. Hattie Eichorn, Natural Bridge; Mr. and Mrs. Elmer
Klock, Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Klock, Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Henry Dow,
Stone Mills; Mr. and Mrs. Charles Murphy and family, Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Snell
and family, Mrs. Nadine Atley, Lafargeville; Mrs. Belle Kring and daughter, Ruth
and son, James, Mr. and Mrs. Ira Kring, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Cole and family,
Brier Hill; Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Simonds, Mrs. James Hagen, Mr. and Mrs. Oran
House and family, Mr. and Mrs. N. House, Plessis; Mr. and Mrs. Howard Walts,
Clayton; Mr. and Mrs. B. J. Kelsey and family, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Caris, Mrs.
Helen Caris, Mrs. Helen Collins and Miss Natalie Collins, Omar; Mrs. Hattie
Garlock, Alexandria Bay; Mr. and Mrs. George Garlock, Omar; Mrs. Grace Hill and
daughter Thelma, Briar Hill.
Watertown Daily Times, 9 Jun 1921
Hurt in Army; Leg Amputated
James Hagen, aged 21 years, of Lafargeville, R.F.D. 1, a veteran of the
World War, underwent an operation at the City hospital on Saturday for the
amputation of the right leg above the ankle, the operation being necessary
because of infection of the bone caused from a fracture sustained while in the
army service. The operation was performed by Dr. Harlow G. Farmer.
Hagen received a fracture of the small bone in the back of the right leg
while in the service. The fracture never properly healed and Hagen has been
troubled since that time. He was brought to the hospital several weeks ago for
treatment and although infection of the bone had developed, it was thought that
the leg could be saved.
On Saturday, however, it was decided that the member must be amputated
and the operation was performed Saturday night. The leg was amputated about half
way between the ankle and the knee. The former soldier's condition is reported
as good today.
Watertown Daily Times 15 Dec 1923
Willard Stephenson Master of Plessis Grange
Called Back to the Chair Again -- Mrs. Lillian George Re-elected
Secretary -- Rev. W. Bradley Chaplain -- Lecturer Has Good Program -- Next
Meeting Wednesday Evening Dec. 19.
Plessis, Dec 15 -- Plessis grange held an all-day meeting Wednesday, Dec.
5. The usual business was transacted in the forenoon. One member was received on
Dinner was served at noon after which the following officers were elected
for 1924: Master, Willard Stephenson; overseer, Earl Bretsch; lecturer, Geneva
Bretsch [Earl's wife]; steward, James Bolton; chaplain, Rev. W. Bradley;
secretary, Lillian George [Geneva's mother]; treasurer, Jerome Frost; gate
keeper, Peter Bretsch [Earl's father]; Ceres, Myrtle George [Geneva's sister];
Pomona - Mable Caswell; Flora - Gertrude Bretsch; assistant steward, Claude
Bretsch [Earl's brother; Gertrude's husband]; lady assistant steward, Beulah
Turner; pianist, Myrtle George; trustee, Peter Bretsch; fire director, James
After the election the worthy lecturer gave a program beginning with a
song by the grange, following by a recitation by Mary Bolton, a reading by
Lillian George, a vocal solo by Rev. Bradley and readings by Beulah Turner and
The next meeting comes Wednesday evening, Dec. 19.
Journal and Republican of Lowville, Thursday, 2 July 1925
Boy Killed as Autos Collide
Norman Snow, 8, Alexandria Bay, was killed and two others injured Sunday
morning [28 Jun 1925] at 10:30 when a Ford truck and sedan collided on a curving
hill between Clayton and Alexandria Bay. His father and young sister escaped
unhurt [Bernard D. Snow and probably Marguerite "Peggy" Snow]. Both autos were
Watertown Daily Times [no date - probably early 1926]
Few cases for County Court
... Two criminal cases carried over from Judge LaRue's November term may
never reach trial. One is that of Charles Gibbons, of Clayton, indicted last
October on charges of manslaughter, second degree, for running over and fatally
injuring six-year-old [note discrepancy] Norman Snow on the Clayton-Alexandria
Bay highway June 28. The other is the case of...
Watertown Daily Times, 19 Jun 1926
Hagens Hold Annual Reunion of Family
Lafargeville, Jun 19 -- The seventh annual reunion of the Hagen
family was held at the farm home of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Klock on the North Adams
road near Adams Center, Saturday. Dinner was served at noon at which covers were
laid for about 40 guests.
Among those present were: Mr. and Mrs. Henry Klock of North Adams; Mr.
and Mrs. Elmer Klock and family of Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. Melvin [Marva]
Klock and son of North Adams; Mr. and Mrs. Lester Walts, Mrs. and Mrs. Orin
House, Mrs. Bernice Kelsey of Omar; Howard Walts, Clayton; Mrs. Luella House,
Alexandria Bay; Rev. [sic - possibly a typo omitting the name of an actual
clergyman in attendance] and Mrs. James Hagen of Plessis; Floyd Simonds and
family of Plessis; Nellie Helmer and George Mott of Plessis; Leona Robbins and
daughter of Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Philip Horton [sic - should be Hotis] of
Evans Mills; Harriett Eichorn, Ross Eichorn and family, Fred Eichorn and son of
Natural Bridge; Mrs. Edwin Witt, Robert Witt, Gordon Witt of Dexter; Leland
Walts of Dexter; Mrs. Will Klock, Charles Richardson and family, James Barton
and family, Fred Barton and family of Orleans; Mary Jane Spencer of Watertown;
Mr. Ed Vanderwalker of Adams; Florien Ganthur of Watertown.
The next gathering will be held with Will Klock and family, near
Watertown Daily Times, 12 Dec 1901
Adam Hagen death notice
HAGEN -- At Perch River, Dec. 10, Adam Hagen, aged 72 years. Funeral at
his late residence on Friday at 11. Interment at Dexter.
Watertown Daily Times, 22 Sep 1922
Agnes Parker death notice
PARKER -- In Plessis, 17 Sep 1922, Agnes Lillian Parker, aged 4 [?
illegible] years, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Virgil Parker of Alexandria Center.
Funeral today with burial at Brookside Cemetery.
Watertown Daily Times, 3 Oct 1918
Private Arthur E. Hagen
Lafargeville Boy is Hurt In Action
Word Received From War
Wrote Before the Battle
Told Sister That He Expected to Go Up
Front in a Few Days and Would Give Jerry What He was Looking For
Lafargeville, Oct 3 -- Word has been received that Private Arthur E.
Hagen, Company H, 307th [? illegible] Infantry, was wounded in action, Aug 27 [?
illegible]. James Hagen received the following telegram from the war department:
"Deeply regret to inform you that it is officially reported that Private
Arthur E. Hagen, infantry, was severely wounded in action August 27 [?
illegible]. Department has no further information.
the Adjutant General"
Three days before he was wounded, Private Hagen wrote the following
letter to his sister, Mrs. Lucina Simonds of Lafargeville:
August 24, 1918
Just a few words to let you know that I am in the best of health. I have
no kick at all. Of course we are kept very busy but I don't mind it, for we are
better off when we have something to do. The weather is very changeable -- one
day it's more than hot while on a different day it rains -- but personally I
don't mind it as long as I am in the best of health.
I am glad to tell you that in a few days I'll be facing Jerry. I expect
to give him all he is looking for. Of course it's very exciting now, especially
last night when I was in a detail going up to the position which my outfit
expects to occupy and saw plenty of fun. Will write you about all my experiences
when I return from the lines. In the meantime I am ready for anything.
I am satisfied very much with the food up here. Everyone seems to be
cheerful and happy at the thought that soon we will be able to show of what
material we are all made of. I can give you my candid opinion that Jerry will
find us a pretty hard nut to crack.
Trusting that all is well with you and my sincerest remembrances to all,
Private Hagan is 27 [? illegible] years old and is the son of James
Hagan, who lives about two and a half miles out on the Plessis road. He made his
home in Virginia for some time. Private Hagen has two sisters, Mrs. Floyd
Simonds and Mrs. Walter Robbins, both of Lafargeville, and one brother, James
Hagen who is also in the service.
[Transcriber's note: Arthur Hagan, son of James and Ellen (Klock) Hagan,
was actually a half-brother of Lucina Simonds, Leone Robbins and James Hagan
Jr., children of James and Alma (Snow) Hagan. Arthur had a full sister, Nellie
(Hagan) Helmer, not mentioned in the article. Born 18 Jul 1888 in Caroline
County, VA [Vital Records of Caroline Co., VA], he would have been 30 years of
age when the above letter was written.]
Fulton [NY] Patriot, 29 Jun 1933
La Graves - Wrape marriage notice
Mrs. Evelyn Howard and June Burton spent a coupe of days with Rev.
William B. Howard in Stone Mills last week. They attended the marriage of Miss
Pauline Wrape and Arthur LaGraves on Saturday, which occurred at high noon in
the Methodist Protestant church, Rev. William B. Howard performing the ceremony.
The church was decorated with streamers and ropes of yellow and white and a
profusion of cut flowers, potted plants, ferns and evergreens. Mrs. William
Sloat sang "Dawning." The wedding march was played by Mrs. Earl Graham.
The same color scheme was carried out at the home, where about 60 guests
attended the dinner. The bride was the recipient of many beautiful gifts. They
left on a brief wedding trip following dinner.
Watertown Daily Times, 8 Apr 1904
50th Wedding Anniversary Fittingly Celebrated
Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Dewey
Surrounded by Their Children and
Friends on Their Golden Wedding
Clayton, April 8 -- Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin W[hitman] Dewey of this village
celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Wednesday evening at their home on
James street, surrounded by their children and grandchildren and over 70 of
their friends and relatives. The ceremonies commenced by a prayer by Rev. Mr.
Fearr [? illegible], after which a sumptuous repast was served. Games and other
amusements followed until after 10, when guests departed in consequence of the
slight illness of Mrs. Dewey. The guests from out of town were Mr. and Mrs. S.
D. Greaves, Mrs. Adelaide W. Dewey, Watertown; George Welch[? illegible],
Rochester; Mr. and Mrs. E. A. Dewey, Lafargeville; Mrs. M. J. Dewey, Oneida; Mr.
and Mrs. George Lewis, Carthage; Mr. and Mrs. A. D. Holloway, Omar; Mr. and Mrs.
A. H. Dewey, Miss Dewey, Sackets Harbor; Mrs. Marion M. Tanner, Lafargeville;
Mr. and Mrs. B. J. Green, Mrs. Mary Green, Mullet Creek; Mrs. Bretsch,
Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. B. E. Holloway, Omar. The venerable couple were the
recipients of many useful and handsome presents.
Watertown Daily Times, 6 Feb 1909
Plessis Family Gathering
Relatives and Friends Honor Mrs. Jane Hagen on Her
Plessis, Feb 6 -- On Friday, Jan 29, a surprise and birthday party was
given for Mrs. Jane Hagen at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Nelson House, near
Plessis. Those present were Mr. and Mrs. John Hagen and daughter, Margaret,
Clayton; Mr. and Mrs. James Hagen, Mr. and Mrs. Ira Kring, Alexandria Bay; Mr.
and Mrs. Jacob Eichorn, Carthage; Mr. and Mrs. Phillip Hotis, Evans Mills; Mr.
and Mrs. Henry Klock, Watertown; Mr. and Mrs. Lester Walts, Omar; Mr. and Mrs.
Nelson House, Leo House, Jane Hagen, Plessis; Mr. and Mrs. James Barton, Virgil
Barton, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Barton, Gladys Barton, Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Dorr
and Henry Dorr, Lafargeville. At noon a bountiful dinner was partaken of by all
present, after which the guests were entertained by music and recitations. Mrs.
Hagen was presented with many useful presents. At night the guests departed
wishing Mrs. Hagen many returns of a happy birthday.
Watertown Daily Times, Fri., 26 Jan 1917
90 Guests At Their Golden Wedding
Anniversary Celebrated in the House Where They Were
In the same house in which they were married on 24 Jan 1867, Mr. and Mrs.
Bradley J. Green of Orleans observed their golden wedding day Wednesday evening,
assisted by nearly 90 relatives and friends.
Mrs. Green was formerly Miss Adelaide Evans and was married to Mr. Green
by the Rev. E. P. Weed. Of those witnessing the wedding, Mrs. Mary Green, a
sister-in-law, was the only person present at the anniversary.
The celebration of the event was arranged as a surprise to Mr. and Mrs.
Green by their daughters, Mrs. Edna Strough and Mrs. Leslie Carlisle. Mr. and
Mrs. Norman Green, Mr. and Mrs. Drayton E. Sweet, Miss Olive V. Sweet, Mr. and
Mrs. Charles F. Cable and Miss Ruth Cable of this city were present at the
anniversary. Several were also present from Clayton and Lafargeville. Mrs. Elsie
McCarn of Clayton, a guest at the wedding, was unable to be present. Others
present included M. J. Dewey of Oneida and F. A. Green of Gouverneur. A supper
was served during the evening.
Unknown newspaper, about 1 Feb 1917
[A second article on the 50th wedding anniversary of Bradley and
Adelaide (Evans) Greene]
Watertown, Feb 1 -- A surprise was tendered Mr. and Mrs. Bradley J.
Greene at their home near Lafargeville on the evening of January 24, the
occasion being the 50th anniversary of their wedding day. The affair was
cleverly arranged by their daughters, Mrs. Edna Strough and Mrs. Leslie
Carlisle, and the occasion was a most enjoyable one. A purse of gold and other
valuable gifts were presented to the well-known couple. The house in which they
live stands on the site of the forest which Mrs. Greene's father cleared. He
built a log cabin which afterward burned and the present house was erected. Mrs.
Greene and her brothers and children were all born on the homestead where she
now lives. Mr. Greene is 75 years old and Mrs. Green 70. Both are in remarkably
good health. Attending the golden wedding anniversary from this city were Mrs.
Drayton Sweet and daughter Olive; Mr. and Mrs. Norman Greene and Mr. and Mrs.
Charles E. Cable and daughter, Ruth.
Watertown Daily Times, 24 Jan 1927
Local Couple Wed 60 Years
Mr. and Mrs. B. J. Greene Observe Anniversary
A Family Gathering
Couple Married in Lafargeville in 1867. Long Resided on Farm in Town
Mr. and Mrs. Bradley J. Greene, 7 State Place, are quietly celebrating
their 60th wedding anniversary today. Mrs. Greene said that they were resting
today, but this evening a number of friends would hold a party at their home. A
supper will be served and a social time will be held.
"Every year since we have been married we have had some kind of a
celebration," said Mrs. Greene. During the last few years our children have
always planned them so we don't know just what is in store for us this evening.
They have said, however, that a few relatives and members of our family are
coming in for the evening."
Although the couple spend their winters in the city, they refer to the
town of Orleans as their home. Mr. Greene owns a farm in that town, which was
the place built by Mrs. Greene's father, Abner H. Evans, when he settled in this
section. The home has always been in the family and until 22 years ago it was
operated by Mr. Greene. The couple spend their summers on the farm, but live in
Watertown during the winter.
Mr. and Mrs. Greene were married at the homestead, 24 Jan 1867. The
ceremony was performed by Elder Weed, who was pastor of the Baptist church in
Lafargeville. After their marriage, the couple went to live at the home of Mr.
Greene's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Allison [sic - Alanson] Greene, near Tanner's
Corners in the town of Alexandria. They resided there for three years and then
Mr. Greene bought the Evans' homestead and he and his wife went to live there.
They remained on the farm until 22 years ago. During the time Mr. Greene
operated the farm himself. Since then he has had a man at the farm, who operates
it on shares.
"We always spend the summers on the farm," said Mr. Greene. "There are
two sets of buildings on the farm and it is possible for us to spend our summers
at the farm without interfering with the manager. Our house is always ready and
the only thing we have to do when we go to spend the summer is take some
provisions. If it gets cold we have plenty of wood to start a fire and warm the
Mrs. Greene is the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Abner Horr Evans.
Her father was one of the early settlers in the town of Orleans and he cleared
the land and built the old homestead that is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Greene.
Mrs. Greene was born in the house and she spent practically all of her life on
the homestead. All of her brothers and sisters were born in the house and Mr.
and Mrs. Greene's three children were also born on the homestead. Mr. Greene,
who is the son of the late Allison [sic - Alanson] and Rebecca Dewey Greene, was
born in the town of Adams. He lived there with his parents until he was twelve
years of age. He then moved to the vicinity of Tanner's Corners with his parents
and he spent practically all of his life until about three years ago in that
Both Mr. and Mrs. Greene are enjoying the best of health and Mrs. Greene
said that neither one of them had ever had any serious illness. Mrs. Greene is
80 years of age and her husband is 86. There were three children born to the
union. They are Emmett A. Greene of Gouverneur, now proprietor of the St.
Lawrence Inn; Mrs. Edna Strough of this city, and Mrs. Elsie Carlisle.
Mr. and Mrs. Greene celebrated their golden wedding anniversary at their
home in the town of Orleans. At that time their daughter prepared a surprise
party for them. They had about 190 guests at a supper party at their farm.
Watertown Daily Times, 24 Jan 1928
Couple Married 61 Years Ago
Orleans Residents Spend Their Winters Here
Mr. and Mrs. Bradley
Mr. Green 86 Years Old While Wife is 81 -- Were Married on Old
Homestead Jan. 14, 1867
Mr. and Mrs. Bradley J. Green, 7 State Place, are quietly celebrating
their 61st wedding anniversary today at their home. Mr. Green stated that they
did not expect that there would be any celebration, although their children have
been in the habit of arranging a surprise party for them on every anniversary
for several years.
Although Mr. and Mrs. Greene spend the winters in Watertown at the home
of their daughter, Mrs. Edna A. Strough, they refer to Orleans as their home.
Mr. Greene owns a farm in that town, which was built by Mrs. Greene's father,
Abner H. Evans, when he settled in this section. The home has always been in the
family and until 33 years ago it was operated by Mr. Greene. The couple now
spend their summers on the farm, although in the winters they make their home in
"We still go to the farm every summer," Mr. Greene said. "I have a garden
there and spend a good deal of time in it. I had a very fine garden last year."
Mr. and Mrs. Green are both in fairly good health, although they have
been under the care of the doctor lately. Mr. Greene was born May, 1841, and is
now 86 years of age. Mrs. Greene, who was born in September, 1845, is now 81
years of age.
Mrs. Greene is a daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Abner H[orr] Evans.
Prior to her marriage she was Miss Adelaide Evans. Her father was one of the
early settlers in the town of Orleans and cleared the land and built the
homestead on the farm where Mr. and Mrs. Green now spend their summers. Mrs.
Greene was born in the house and spent practically all her life on the
homestead. All of her brothers and sisters were born there and the three
children of Mr. and Mrs. Greene were also born on the farm.
Mr. Greene is a son of the late Alanson and Rebecca Dewey Greene. He was
born in the town of Adams and lived there with his parents until he was twelve
years of age. He then moved with his parents to the vicinity of Tanner's Corners
and spent practically all his life in that neighborhood until about three years
Three children, all of whom are living, were born to the union. They are:
Emmett A. Greene of Gouverneur, Mrs. Edna A. Strough of this city, and Mrs.
Elsie Carlisle, also of Watertown.
Mr. and Mrs. Greene were married at the homestead on Jan. 24, 1867. The
ceremony was performed by Elder Weed, who was pastor of the Baptist church of
Lafargeville. After their marriage the couple went to live at the home of Mr.
Greene's parents near Tanner's Corners in the town of Alexandria, where they
lived for three years. Mr. Greene then bought the Evans farm and took his wife
to live there. They remained on the farm until 23 years ago, during which time
Mr. Greene operated it himself. He now has a man on it, who operates it on
Watertown Daily Times, 5 Dec 1933
Brayton Bretch Found Dying on City Hall Lawn
Autopsy Will Be Performed On Body of Well Known
[Oswego, NY] -- Brayton S. Bretsch, , of  East Fourth Street,
died at Oswego Hospital at 10:45 Tuesday morning one-half hour after being found
lying on the City Hall lawn. District Attorney Harry M. Stacy, who was called in
the matter, said later in the day the death was apparently due to poisoning. A
six-ounce bottle, commonly used in drug stores, with label scraped off, and
containing a small quantity of colorless and practically odorless fluid, was
found in an inside pocket of the deceased's coat.
Two letters were also found on Mr. Bretch's person, one addressed to the
chief of police and the other to Henry Hill at the Welland Hotel. Mr. Hill is a
retired ticket agent of the D., L. and W. Railroad. Contents of the letters were
not divulged by District Attorney Stacy. He also had $50.85 in his pocket.
An autopsy was to be held to definitely determine the cause of death.
Exact nature of the fluid contained in the bottle was not immediately
ascertained. The bottle was found by Captain Ward Dalrymple and is being kept at
police headquarters, pending the autopsy and investigation.
Shortly after 10 o'clock Tuesday morning police were notified that a man
was lying on the lawn of the southwest corner of the City Hall grounds.
Patrolman Michael Brown investigated and, realizing at once that the man was in
serious condition, hastened back into headquarters and telephoned for the
ambulance. Captain Dalrymple, on visiting the scene, was told by John H.
Connell, who was passing at the time, that he had seen Mr. Bretch standing near
the Second street entrance to the police station and had noticed him drink
something from a small bottle and then throw it away.
Captain Dalrymple looked about the lawn in the vicinity of the doorway
but could find no bottle. Then, while waiting for the ambulance, he looked
through the stricken man's clothes and found the bottle in an inner pocket. He
was of the opinion that after tossing the bottle away, Mr. Bretch must have
Patrolman John Burke accompanied the ambulance to Oswego Hospital.
Examination by a physician revealed that Mr. Bretch was dying and the end came
shortly after he had been admitted to the institution. In the meantime Assistant
District Attorney Clarence J. Gorman visited headquarters, the district
attorney's office having been advised of the happening. He learned the facts of
the occurrence and then visited the hospital, taking possession of the two
letters and turning them over to District Attorney Stacy.
Mr. Bretch was born in Jefferson County where he spent his early youth. He
was a graduate of the Rochester School of Optometry and practiced for several
years in Syracuse. He came to Oswego thirty years ago, and established offices
in West First Street and later at his home,  East Fourth street.In
addition to his profession as an optometrist, Mr. Bretch was a specialist on
violins and had a system of improving their tones which he sold to all parts of
the country, many sending their violins and others getting directions from him.
He advertised widely and circularized musicians all over the United States.
Mr. Bretch was a veteran of the Spanish American war. He attended Trinity
Methodist church. Surviving are his widow, Mary O. Bretch; two sisters, Mrs.
Sarah Hotis, Evans Mills, and Mrs. Alice Schollenberg of Fisher's Landing.
Watertown Daily Times, 5 Jan 1922
Funeral of Calvin Ainsworth
Stone Mills, Jan 4 -- Funeral services were held Monday
afternoon at 1:30 at the Methodist Episcopal church in this village for Calvin
Ainsworth, aged 71, a retired farmer, who died at his home here Friday at 6
a.m., of cancer of the stomach. Burial was made at Depauville. Rev. William
Eddy, pastor of the Lafargeville Methodist Episcopal church officiated at the
Mr. Ainsworth had lived at Stone Mills for the past 30 years and until
about three years ago had carried on a farm here. He is survived by his widow;
three daughters, Mrs. Arthur Biggers of Brownville; Mrs. George LaGraves of
Delhi, Calif., and Mrs. Willard Fanford[? illegible] of Stone Mills; two
sisters, Mrs. William Hart of Watertown, and Mrs. William Watson of Evans Mills,
and a brother, Charles Ainsworth of Port Leyden.
He was born at Felts Mills in 1850, the son of the late Albert and Salina
Ainsworth. In 1869 he married Miss Mary Hunt of Natural Bridge. She died in
1908, and two years later he again married, his second wife being Miss Jemima
Mr. Ainsworth was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church at
Lafargeville, and always took an active part in the work of the church.
Watertown Daily Times, Tues., 12 Oct 1915
Mrs. George LaGraves Dies At Stone Mills
She Had Spent Most of Her Life in Vicinity of
Lafargeville, Oct. 12 -- Mrs. George LaGraves, of Stone Mills, whose
funeral was held from the Methodist Protestant church of Stone Mills, Wednesday
[6 Oct], was born in the town of Orleans in 1848 [25 Feb 1847 per gravestone
inscription], the daughter of Michael and Arvilla [Churchill] Murphy. Forty-four
years ago she was married to George W. LaGraves. Nearly all her married life has
been spent in this vicinity. Of five children four are still living: Mrs. Edwin
Robins, of T[housand] I[slands] Park; Mrs. Fred Lee, of San Miguel, Cal.; Miss
Grace LaGraves and George LaGraves of Stone Mills. There are eleven
grand-children. She also leaves her husband, two brothers, and one sister. She
has long been identified with the Methodist Protestant church. Rev. Fuller
officiated at the services.
Watertown Daily Times, 12 Jul 1926
Chas. R. Barton, Aged 56, Dies
Death Follows Two Blood Transfusions
Was Son of Former
Had Spent Practically Entire Life in Town of Orleans and Was
Prominent in Lafargeville Grange
Lafargeville, July 12 -- Charles Rogers Barton, 56, died at his home on
Theresa street, this village, at 6 Saturday night following an extended illness
of pernicious anemia. Mr. Barton who had been in ill health for the past several
months underwent two blood transfusions without avail some time ago. He also
underwent a dental operation for extraction of his teeth, as it was believed his
condition was partially due to septic poisoning resulting from infected teeth.
He had been confined to his bed for some time preceding his death. Mr. Barton,
who was the son of the late Edward Barton of this village, once sheriff of
Jefferson county, was well known throughout the town of Orleans, where he had
spent practically his entire life. He was born in the town of Orleans, 14 Aug
1869, son of the late Edward and Martha Caris Barton [sister of Jane Ann Caris,
the wife of James Hagen]. He attended rural schools in the town, and at an early
age took up the occupation of farming.
In 1907, his marriage to Miss Dorothy Dietrich of this village took
place. Two years following their marriage were spent in Lafargeville after which
they moved to a farm. Nine years ago, they returned to the village where they
have since resided. Mr. Barton was engaged in carpentry and masonry work and
until forced by ill health to retire from active work had been engaged in the
local station of Sheffield Farms, Inc.
Mr. Barton had been a member of the Lafargeville grange for several
years. He had planned to join the Lafargeville Methodist church a short time ago
with Mrs. Barton, but was unable to do so at the time because of ill health,
which confined him to his bed.
Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Dorothy Barton, two daughters, Gladys, 19,
and Marion, 10, and one son, Edward, 13; one sister, Mrs. Blanche Haas and two
brothers, James and Fred Barton, all of Lafargeville, and one aunt, Mrs. Helen
Caris of Alexandria Bay. Several nieces and nephews also survive.
Funeral services will be held from the Methodist Episcopal church at 1:30
Tuesday afternoon, Rev. B. J. Davison, pastor of the church, officiating. A
prayer service will be held at 1 at the late home. Interment will be made in the
Watertown Daily Times, 26 Nov 1922
Civil War Veteran, 87, Walks Nearly Four Miles
Joseph Pierce Celebrates Birthday By Walking to Plessis
Plessis, Nov 26 -- Joseph Pierce, a veteran of the Civil War and now a
resident of Baucus Settlement, who was 87 years old Wednesday, walked from his
place to Plessis that day, a distance of three and one fourth miles, making the
trip in 45 minutes. Mr. Pierce is in excellent health, keen minded, jovial and a
wonderful man at this advanced age.
Watertown Daily Times, 13-14 July 1899
Clarence Bretsch vs. The Thousand Island Park Association
[Transcriber's note: Clarence Bretsch was a criminal lawyer who had a
practice in Gary, Indiana in the 1920s, but frequently visited his birthplace in
Jefferson county. Around 1920 he owned the steam yacht Lotus Seeker, which a
Watertown Daily Times article states was considered one of the finest privately
owned pleasure craft on the St. Lawrence in the early 1900s. Mr. Bretsch, born
in Theresa, NY, 20 Sep 1876, reportedly entertained many city and county
officials on the yacht. He is probably the same Clarence Bretsch who, as of 9
Jan 1900, was postmaster at Fishers Landing, Jefferson, NY. The following is a
series of 1899 Times articles concerning the case of one Clarence Bretsch, a
butcher, vs. the Thousand Island Park Association.]
Thousand Island Park, July 13 -- The case of the meat man Bretch is yet
unsettled. The trustees of the park this morning tried to get a hearing before
Justice W. E. Collins, who is also the customs house office. But Mr. Collins
declined to hear the case, saying that his duties as customs house officer could
not be interfered with. The next thing done was to send Bretch to Lafargeville
before Justice Beckwith, Charles Cooper of Theresa defending him, and H. E.
Morse, of Clayton, acting as the association's attorney. Bretch demanded a trial
by jury and this will necessitate many delays in the proceedings. Bretch was
brought to the Park again to await further action tomorrow.
July 14 -- Mr. Bretsch having withdrawn his demand for a trial by jury,
the case proceeded before Justice Beckwith at Lafargeville. H. E. Morse, of
Clayton, ably presented the case for the association and Attorney Cooper, of
Theresa, gave Bretsch's side of the matter. All day long the case has been
before the justice and after much deliberation Mr. Beckwith decided in favor of
Bretsch. Nothing, however, was done toward preventing more of his huckstering,
but one of the trustees affirms that if Bretsch continues his business within
his corporation, his path in the future will be decidedly thorny and full of
The same trustee is of the opinion that the affair was pre-arranged, as
Mr. Cooper was on the park at the time of the arrest and also because Bretsch
had informed the park policeman where and when he could be found soliciting and
delivering his orders.
Butcher Bretsch Discharged
Justice Beckwith Finds that He
committed No Offense In Delivering Meat on Thousand Island Park
Grenell Island Park, July 14 -- At last the T. I. Park butcher case,
after going on a wild goose chase for the past few days, has had a hearing
before Justice A. Beckwith, of Lafargeville.
This case of the people against Clarence Bretsch was tried yesterday in
the office of W. F. Ford. The defendant runs a meat market near T. I. Park. The
offense charged was selling and delivering meat and eggs to cottagers on
Thousand Island Park. The defense was that the acts alleged did not constitute a
crime, and that the defendant did not sell goods on the Park grounds, but simply
delivered goods ordered at his store, which, it was claimed, he had a right to
do. Mr. Bretsch was found not guilty. H. E. Morse, of Clayton, represented the
people and Jerome B. Cooper, of Theresa, with W. F. Ford as counsel, represented
Watertown Daily Times, Sat., 27 Jan 1917
Theresa Boy Enlists in Army and Will Become a Cook
Has Long Line of Fighting Ancestors
With a long line of fighting ancestors as an incentive, Orville Sprague,
aged 21 years, son of Del Sprague of Theresa, applied for enlistment this
morning at the United States army recruiting office in the Smith building.
Sprague's great-grandfather, Charles Sprague, a native of Theresa,
enlisted at the opening of the Civil War and served for four years in many of
the battles of the war, before he was taken prisoner and placed in Libby prison
where he died with many other soldiers. [Charles A. Sprague, mustered into
service 11 Sep 1862, actually died 14 Dec 1863 from an illness while he was
being treated at Fort Delaware in Delaware, a facility which was also used as a
prison for Confederate troops.]
His grandfather, Marcellus Sprague, also served with the Union army
during the Civil War. He was on the line for two years before he was disabled by
wounds. After he recovered, he re-enlisted, serving until the close of the
conflict with a regiment which fought "bushwhackers" only. His uncle [sic -
should be great-uncle, i.e., grandfather's brother], Jerome Sprague, also of
Theresa [later of Antrim Co., MI] served for four years during the Civil War.
Sprague's brother, Ivan Sprague, enlisted at the local recruiting station
about six months ago and is serving as a blacksmith in the quartermaster corps
of the Eighth cavalry, stationed at Fort Bliss, Tex. Sprague, after being
enlisted by Colonel E. P. Andrus, in charge of the recruiting division of which
Watertown is a part, will be sent to the Cooks' and Bakers' school at Washington
D.C. where he will be given a six month's course in baking before being assigned
to a regiment.
The young man's father visited the recruiting station this morning and
approved of his son's application for enlistment, saying that were he several
years younger, he himself would go into the army, together with his sons.
Watertown Daily Times, 21 Feb 1898
A Will Contest Begun
Heirs of Harrison George, of Alexandria, in a Dispute
Alleged by a Nephew -- A Hitch in the Proceedings for Admitting His Will to
The last will and testament of the late Harrison H. George, of the town
of Alexandria, was offered for probate in Surrogate Adams' court this morning by
John B. George, one of the executors named in the will, and objections to the
probate of the will were filed by Frederick L. Pierce, of this city, who is a
son of the late Ann E. Pierce, a sister of the testator.
Harrison H. George was a prosperous farmer who died at his home in the
town of Alexandria a short time ago [8 Jan 1898], leaving real estate valued at
$14,000 and personal property valued at $1,000. He had no family of his own, but
was survived by two brothers, John B. George and Sanford George, and a sister,
Agnes A. Howe, all of the town of Alexandria. He left a last will and testament
in which he bequeathed $4,000 to the sister and the balance of his property to
be equally divided between the brothers.
The principal objection made to the probate of the will is that the
testator was mentally incompetent to execute a will. The contestant alleges that
at the time said instrument is alleged to have been made, executed and
published, Mr. George had lost his mind and memory and was incompetent by reason
to make a last will and testament.
In surrogate's court this morning Anson Harder, of Redwood, appeared for
the proponent and Porter & Porter for the contestant. The case was set down
for trial April 6.
Watertown Daily Times, 15 Sep 1916
Sprague - Rowell marriage notice Plessis, Sep 15 -- A quiet
wedding took place, at the home of the bride's father, Eugene Rowell Tuesday,
Sept 12, when Miss Flossie Rowell and Cushman Sprague were united in marriage by
Rev. W. P. Garrett. Only immediate relatives were present.
The bride was gowned in a traveling suit of blue. The couple left at once
for a trip to Syracuse and other points. Both are popular and well known young
people, and earnest workers in the church, Sunday school and grange.
Oswego Daily Times, 10 Sep 1894
Suicide at HomeThomas Sykes, of Rome, in a fit of despondency,
shot himself early Saturday morning. He died about two hours after firing the
shot. In his statement he said he could not stand the strain any longer. He was
despondent because of not having work. He was employed in the fire department
for ten years, and was laid off last May. He leaves a wife and one son, Clark
Sykes, who resides in Johnstown. Mrs. Sykes had been visiting her son and
returned home Friday. Deceased was in his 50th year. [He was the second son of
John J. Sykes, Jr. and Lorinda Thompson, born in the Town of Orleans, Jeff. Co.,
ca. 1840. His wife was Sarah C. Dodge]
Watertown Daily Times, 3 Sep 1926
Sprague Family Holds ReunionThe third annual reunion of the
Sprague family was held at Haas[? illegible] Park, North Wilna, Wednesday with
55 members present. [This village appears to have been entirely within the
boundaries of present-day Fort Drum, and so no longer exists.]
A picnic dinner was served at noon after which the following officers
were elected for the ensuing year: President, Charles Bates; Vice-President,
John Sprague; Secretary, Mrs. Luella Cornwall; Treasurer, Mrs. Addie Sprague.
Games and sports were enjoyed during the afternoon.
Those present were Mr. and Mrs. Charles Bates; Mr. and Mrs. Clarence
Bates; Mr. Edward Bates; Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Elliott; Mr. and Mrs. Wallace Bates;
Miss Helen Bates; Mr. and Mrs. Harry Caswell; Miss Eva Caswell; Mr. and Mrs.
Gerald Backus, Misses Mildred and Marie Backus; Mr. and Mrs. Cushman Sprague;
Mr. John Sprague; Mrs. Lucy Houghtaling; Mr. John Houghtaling; Mr. and Mrs.
Walter Sprague, Miss Alzina Sprague; Mr. Ralston Sprague; Mrs. Lottie Sprague;
Mrs. Sidney Cornwall; Mrs. Emory Fikes, Miss Blanche Fikes [sic - should be Miss
Florence Fikes]; Mr. and Mrs. George Simonds, Misses Grace and Pearl Simonds,
Messrs. Claude, Ernest and Fred Simonds, Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Simonds, Misses
Monica, Naomi, Alma and Atheda Simonds, Mr. Hamilton Simonds, Mr. Roy Simonds;
Mrs. Lillian Parker; Mr. and Mrs. Edwin Hall, Messrs. Howard, Earl, Edson,
Carson and Roy Hall, Miss Lillian Hall and Miss Kathleen Parker.
Watertown Daily Times, 19 Mar 1926
Mrs. G. W. Bretsch Dies At TheresaTheresa, March 19 - Mrs.
Sabrina Robbins Bretsch, 71, wife of George W. Bretsch, died this morning at
3:30 at her home in the Commercial House block, where she had been ill for the
past few weeks. About a month ago she was injured in a fall and ten days ago she
suffered a shock.
Mrs. Bretsch was born 12 Sep 1854 between Fishers Landing and Clayton,
and married George W. Bretsch [8 or] 18 Dec 1875. They celebrated their golden
wedding anniversary last December. Mr. Bretsch owned and operated the Commercial
House here for many years and the couple had always resided in this vicinity.
She was a member of the Methodist church.
Surviving besides her husband are two sons, Clarence and Floyd Bretsch of
Gary, Ind., a daughter, Mrs. Harry Horner of Syracuse; one brother, Donald
Robbins of Theresa, and a sister, Mrs. Betsey Grandy of Clayton.
Funeral services will be held Monday afternoon at 2 from the home, Rev.
Mr. McFarland officiating. Interment will be made in Oakwood cemetery.
Oswego Daily Palladium, 5 Aug 1924
Injured When Car Overturned
Prof. Homer L. Bretsch, Graduate of Normal, in Watertown
[Oswego, NY] Professor Homer L. Bretsch, principal of the
Hastings-on-Hudson High school, a cousin of B. S. Bretsch, of this city, and a
graduate of the Oswego State Normal school, is in the Watertown Hospital and is
believed to be in serious condition caused by internal injuries when an auto in
which he was riding turned turtle on a hill north of Martinsburg yesterday
afternoon. Martin Fetterly, stepfather of Mr. Bretsch, of Lafargeville, is
suffering from a broken left arm and many cuts and bruises. Burton Truesden, of
New York, the third occupant of the car, was only slightly bruised and shaken
The party was returning to Lafargeville from Utica, when a blowout of one
of the front tires caused the machine to overturn, pinning the driver, Mr.
Bretsch, beneath. The other two men were thrown from the car. All three were
taken by a farmer who saw the accident, to the office of Dr. C. E. Douglas for
medical attention, after which Mr. Bretsch was removed to Watertown. The machine
was towed to a local garage.
Mr. Bretsch's wife was Miss Florence Prudden, a graduate of the Oswego
Lafargeville is the Bretsch family home and Homer Bretsch was spending
his vacation there. A reunion of the family is to be held at Theresa during the
latter part of the month. H. L. Bretsch [sic - probably intended B. S. Bretsch],
of this city, will attend.
Watertown Daily Times, 21 Dec 1904
Eighty-seventh Birthday Anniversary of Mrs. Polly Dewey
HollowayCollins Landing -- Saturday, Dec. 17, being the 87th
birthday of Mrs. Polly Dewey Holloway, a few of her relatives gave her a very
pleasant surprise at the home of her daughter, Mrs. F. W. Bretsch. A dinner was
served and the afternoon was spent in music, singing and visiting. Mrs. Holloway
was born in Hartford, Conn. [sic] and came to this state with her parents, when
but eight years of age, and settled in Adams. She and one brother, Benjamin W.
Dewey of Clayton, are the only surviving members of a family of eight. After her
marriage to the late William Holloway they came into this vicinity. Mr. and Mrs.
Holloway were married 53 years, and four children were born to them: Alvaro of
Omar, Antillas of Alexandria Bay, Albertus of Denver, Col., and Mrs. Ada
Bretsch, of Tanners Corners. She also has 19 grandchildren, and 13
great-grandchildren. Those present were: Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Dewey; Mr. and
Mrs. C. H. Grapotte and daughter; Mrs. Jennie Holloway and children of Clayton;
Mr. and Mrs. E. A. Dewey; Mr. and Mrs. B. J. Green and Mrs. Alvin Beckwith of
Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. A. D. Holloway; Mr. and Mrs. B. E. Holloway and
children of Omar; A. D. Holloway of Alexandria Bay; Mrs. Marion Tanner of
Tanners Corners; Mr. and Mrs. Roland F. Holloway and son of Collins Landing. At
about 4 p.m. all departed to their homes, leaving many tokens of remembrances
and wishing her many such pleasant birthdays.
Watertown Daily Times (or Reformer), about 17 Dec 1905
Eighty Years in Jefferson County
Mrs. Joseph Collins of Collins Landing sends an interesting biography of
Mrs. Polly Dewey Holloway of Tanners Corners, a native of Hartford, Conn. [sic],
but a resident of Jefferson county for the past 80 years.
"Mrs. Polly Dewey Holloway was born in Hartford, Conn., [sic] 88 years
ago. When she was but eight years of age she moved with her father's family to
Adams, coming in a double wagon. Her father's name was David Dewey and her
mother's maiden name was Polly Cole. She had five brothers and two sisters,
making eight in the family. The children were Eleazer, Joel, Maria Dewey Reed,
Hiram, Rebecca Dewey Green, Polly Dewey Holloway, David J., and Benjamin, all
deceased except Polly and Benjamin.
June 24, 1834, she married William Holloway and they lived together 53
years. They had four children, Alvaro D., of Omar, Antillas of Alexandria Bay,
Albertus of Colorado and Mrs. Ada Bretsch of Tanners Corners. She has ten
grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. Her faculties are good, excepting her
eyesight, which is quite poor. She lives with her daughter, Mrs. Bretsch. She
had a hard sickness last winter, but under the kind care of her children and
other relatives, she recovered and is now able to be about. She and her husband
kept hotel at Lafargeville seven years. They then bought the farm at Tanners
Corners where Mr. Holloway later died."
[Transcriber's note: Although Mrs. Dewey apparently believed she was born
in Hartford, CT, evidence suggests she was actually born in Hartford, Washington
Co., NY, where her father David Dewey was born and married.]
Watertown Daily Times, 8 April 1881
Philip Bretsch, of the town of Alexandria, a farmer, has filed in the
county clerk's office a general assignment for the benefit of his creditors,
making Westly Crandall, of Alexandria, his assignee. The first preferred
creditors are Margaret Bretsch, $600; Margie Bretsch, $500; David Bretsch, $870;
Peter B. Bretsch, $250; Frank L. Bretsch, $125; Kate Bretsch $283; Valentine A.
Haas, $300; Phillip Bretsch, $130; George H. Marshall, $366. The second
preferred creditors' list amounts to $1,800.
Watertown Daily Times, 22 Nov 1928
Funeral of Peter Bretsch, Plessis, Largely Attended
Plessis, Nov 2 -- The funeral of the late Peter Bretsch, who died in
Hepburn hospital, Ogdensburg, following a critical operation, was very largely
attended Tuesday afternoon, the house being packed. Rev. W. J. Hancock
officiated. Earle and Ronald Hunter sang "Abide With Me" and "Some Blessed Day."
The floral pieces were numerous and beautiful and included a pillow from
his children, Claude, DeForest, and Earl Bretsch, and Mrs. Leta Penn; an anchor
from Mrs. Bretsch [Mary Parker West], Mr. and Mrs. Ira Herbison, and Mr. and
Mrs. Garrett West; large spray of white chrysanthemums from Mr. and Mrs. Charles
Cable and Mr. and Mrs. F. K. Lewis; and another from Mr. and Mrs. Roy Van Epps;
besides many other nice sprays and bouquets.
The bearers were the sons and sons-in-law, Claude, DeForest and Earl
Bretsch, Harry Penn, Ira Herbison and Garrett West.
Among people present from out of town were Mr. and Mrs. Drayton Sweet,
Adams; Mr. and Mrs. C. R. Eggleston, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Bretsch, Mr. and Mrs.
Charles Cable, Mr. and Mrs. F. K. Lewis, Mr. and Mrs. Roy Van Epps of Watertown;
Mr. Frank Haller, Carthage; Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hotis, Evans Mills; Mr. and Mrs.
Charles Schollenberg, Fishers Landing; Mr. and Mrs. Addison Bretsch, Mr. and
Mrs. Webster Bretsch, Mr. and Mrs. Harold Bretsch, Mrs. Abbie Walts, Mr. and
Mrs. Fred Resch, Mr. and Mrs. Ross Resch, Mr. and Mrs. George Henry of
Lafargeville; Mr. and Mrs. Edward Zellar, Mr. and Mrs. Edward Ball, Mrs. Ella
West and daughters Dorothy and Edna, and Mrs. Floyd Schell of Theresa.
Mrs. Harriett Frost, Redwood, and the two brothers of Mr. Bretsch, David
and Frederick of Alexandria Bay, whose names were inadvertently omitted in the
obituary, were also present at the funeral.
Watertown Daily Times, 4 Apr 1914
Barnes Corners, 4 Apr -- Frank Coyer died 26 March at the home of his
son, Moses Coyer. Mr. Coyer had been ill about a month and his death was due to
the infirmities of old age. He was 86 years old. He married Mary Doner and most
of their lives were lived at Theresa, coming to this place about 14 years ago.
Mrs. Coyer died eleven years ago. He is survived by 12 children: Moses Coyer of
this place; Alexander Coyer of Clayton; David Coyer of Adams [husband of Adelia
"Dillie" Sprague]; Frank Coyer of Theresa; Mrs. Charles Stoddard of Steuben
county; Mrs. Fred Wring of Black River; Mrs. Frank Mattraw of Philadelphia, Mrs.
Fred Knight of Watertown; Mrs. George Grenell of East Rochester, Mrs. Frank
Delmars of Massena; Mrs. Joseph Cranker of Limerick; Mr. Peter Bert of Theresa.
The funeral was held Friday at the home of his son, Moses, Rev. A. R. Myers
officiating. Interment was at Theresa.
Mr. Coyer was a devout Catholic.
Journal and Republican of Lowville, 26 Feb 1925
Drops Dead at Church Bazaar
[Theresa, NY] Stricken with heart disease, Edward [sic - should be Edgar
C.] Sprague, about 65, a retired farmer, former village and town official and
prominent Granger, dropped dead shortly before 9 o'clock Friday night while
attending a bazaar being given in the town hall by Methodist church men. Mr.
Sprague was occupying a front seat of the entertainment when he was overcome and
fell from the chair to the floor, dead.
[Transcriber's note: Edgar C. Sprague's name occasionally appears as
Edward Sprague in other sources as well, including some census returns. This is
especially confusing because there was an Edward Sprague in Jefferson county for
much of the same time period. Perhaps a better obituary can be located for Edgar
C. Sprague in newspapers "closer to home."]
Oswego Palladium-Times, 30 Dec 1946
Mrs. Mary B. Bretch
Mrs. Mary Beebe Bretsch, 66, widow of Brayton Bretch, died at Oswego
hospital late Saturday after being a patient there only two days. She resides at
61 East Fourth street.
She was born in Lacona, daughter of the late Amos and Rozella Bumpus
Beebe. Her husband died in 1933. Mrs. Bretsch was a member of Trinity Methodist
church, the Women's Society of Christian Service of that church, and of the
Survivors are two sisters, Miss Olive C. Beebe and Miss Edith M. Beebe,
both of Fulton; and three brothers, Erwin H. Beebe of Fulton, Ernest L. Beebe of
Syracuse and Arnold J. Beebe of Utica.
Service will be conducted at the Scoville funeral home at 2 p.m. Tuesday
by Rev. William Eddy, pastor of Trinity church. Interment will be in Riverside
Friends are invited to call at the funeral home Monday evening between the
hours of 7 and 9 o'clock.
Oswego Palladium Times, 31 Dec 1946
Funeral of Mrs. Mary Beebe Bretch, widow of Brayton Bretch, was held at
the Scoville funeral home at 2 o'clock Tuesday afternoon, Rev. William Eddy,
pastor of Trinity Methodist church, officiating. Burial was in Riverside
Bearers were A. K. Andrew, C. M. Ball, A. Tomkins, Laurence Paul and Judson
Beebe. Members of the W.C.T.U. and the B. C. Anderson auxiliary were present in
Watertown Daily Times, 6 Feb 1920
Mrs. Sykes Here, Condition Critical
She is Brought to Hospital Following Shooting by Hired Man
Soldier Turns Pistol At His Own Head
First Shot At Woman Deflected, Second
Lodges in Neck
Daughter, 5, Sees Tragedy
Rushes Into Road and Summons Help
From Mail Carrier -- Shooting Follows Quarrel
[Watertown, NY] Absolutely paralyzed and unable to speak, Mr. Floyd L.
Sykes, who was shot and possibly fatally wounded late Thursday afternoon about 4
at her home, located about two miles and a half from Carthage, on the Pleasant
Lake road, town of Champion, arrived in this city at 1:30 this afternoon and was
taken to the City hospital where she is at the present time in a critical
condition. The shooting followed a quarrel between the woman and William Chant,
the hired man, who committed suicide a few minutes following the attempted
murder of Mrs. Sykes.
Accompanying the woman to this city, was her husband; her father-in-law,
John Sykes; her brothers-in-law, Earl Sykes and Martin LaRuche; and her
sister-in-law, Mrs. George Johnson, all of Carthage. The woman was removed from
the train to the City hospital ambulance. Arriving at the hospital new dressings
were applied to her wounds about her neck and Dr. Gilbert D. Gregor was
summoned. It is expected that the woman will be operated upon either this
afternoon or tonight in an effort to extract the bullet.
The trip from the farmhouse to the station at Carthage was made in a pair
of sleighs drawn by a team of horses. Although the road is in a very bad
condition, being filled with deep holes and ruts of snow, the drive did not have
any ill effect on the woman. The party left the Carthage depot about 12:15 and
arrived in the city about an hour later. The trip in the baggage car of the
train caused the woman much pain at the time. The constant jerking resulted in
her voicing much complaint, saying that it made her more ill. Dr. Adams of
Carthage came with the woman. The woman is paralyzed and cannot move any part of
her body or can hardly utter a word. Because of the paralysis she is not in much
pain, it is said.
Carthage, Feb. 6 -- With a bullet from a .33 automatic revolver, fired
from the hand of William Chant, aged 29 years, a hired man, who later committed
suicide, lodged in the back of her neck, Mrs. Floyd L. Sykes, aged 35 years,
wife of the former police chief of this place, is lying at the point of death at
the Watertown City hospital.
Chant, who is a veteran of the world war, having served in the British
army, believing that he had killed Mrs. Sykes in his rage, immediately placed
the barrel of the automatic against his right cheek, and pulled the trigger. The
bullet entered the cheek and came out under the left ear, passing through the
brain, and resulted in almost instant death. A corset steel, deflecting the
course of the first bullet that was fired at her by Chant, probably saved the
life of Mrs. Sykes. Seeing that the first shot had missed its mark, Chant fired
a second time. The following shot slightly scraped the woman's left shoulder and
entered her neck, becoming lodged at the top of her spine, and resulting in her
body becoming paralyzed.
Frances, aged five years, adopted daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Sykes, who was
the only eye-witness of the tragedy besides the two participants, ran out in the
open, at the request of her mother, to shout for help. The girl attempted to
stop several passing sleighs but could not make herself understood. She remained
in the highway for more than three-quarters of an hour before help was finally
secured. She spied the mail man who was going past the house.
"Oh, Mister Crowner, please come in the house. The hired man has shot my
mama," she cried to Theodore Crowner, the mail carrier of R.F.D. No. 4. The
little girl did not tell the man that Chant had committed suicide and he entered
the house with a suspicion that he was to look in the barrel of the revolver
that had shot Mrs. Sykes. Slowly opening the door, with the girl closely in the
rear, he found both bodies on the floor in the dining room of the house, several
feet away. Mrs. Sykes was lying on her back, breathing slowly, and with much
difficulty. She was but a few inches away from the prostrate form of the hired
man, who was face down, dead, and with the automatic near his head, lying in a
large pool of blood. He did not touch the bodies.
The mail carrier ran hurriedly to the neighboring farm house of Mr. and
Mrs. Burt Rice, several hundred feet away, and telephoned to police
headquarters. Henry Andre, the chief of police, immediately communicated with
the sheriff's office at Watertown. He then notified Dr. C. F. Adams and the two
drove to the scene. When they had reached the farmhouse, Sykes, the husband, had
already arrived. He had been delivering wood at the Stoddard and Sarvey place on
Church street, when informed by Ray Stoddard that his wife had been shot. Mr.
Sykes immediately stopped work and with Ernest Kellogg, a resident of this
place, drove madly to his home. This was about 5.
County Authorities Arrive
Sheriff Michael Gleason and District Attorney Jerome B. Cooper,
accompanied by Miss Louise Burr, stenographer, hurried to the train, following
the notification and arrived in time to leave at 5:06. It was just one hour and
35 minutes after starting for this village that the authorities were at the
farmhouse, an inquest being conducted shortly after. Nine [? illegible]
witnesses, including the little girl, the mail carrier, Mr. and Mrs. Sykes, the
police chief and the attending physician were sworn.
From the information given by both Mrs. Sykes and her adopted daughter,
the county authorities were furnished with a gripping eye picture of the
tragedy. Although the wounded woman was weakened by the loss of blood, having
been without medical attendance for more than one hour and a half, she was able
to relate the facts that led up to the shooting. The adopted daughter, a bright,
blue-eyed, rosy-cheeked little girl, with bobbed hair, gave a very clear account
of the shooting. Her clever picturization of the tragedy resulted in the
district attorney saying that she was the best witness of her age that he had
ever questioned since he has occupied office.
Mrs. Sykes Tells of Tragedy
Mrs. Sykes, who before her marriage was Miss Minnie Chamberlain, a
lifelong resident of Carthage, informed the authorities that Chant had been
employed at their farm since last October, and was a good workman, his only
failing being that he was easy to anger. For the past three weeks there had been
an unusual change in the man and he wore a grouch look practically all of the
time. The first quarrel that he ever had with the family in some time, however,
took place Wednesday afternoon.
Mr. Sykes and Chant were engaged in sawing wood with a buzz saw in the
woods near the farmhouse. Her husband, she said, told him to "get off that
grandstand stuff." He did not say anything in return but it is thought nursed a
grouch [sic] since that time. Yesterday morning the two were engaged in cutting
and loading wood. They reached home about 12:45 in the afternoon with the second
load. The four ate dinner. After the noon meal the two men went back to the
woods and loaded the sleigh for the third time. Sykes left with the load for
this village about 2:45, according to the testimony. When they arrived in front
of the house, Chant jumped off the sleigh and Sykes continued on to Carthage.
Chant went to the farm house.
Entering the kitchen he sat down near the stove. Mrs. Sykes was sitting
in the living room, the adjoining room, engaged in piecing a quilt. Chant in a
gruff voice informed her that the wood which had been placed in the oven to dry
had caught fire. She did not answer, it is said, and he repeated the sentence.
This time she came to the kitchen, slightly angered because he did not put out
the fire himself without disturbing her. She went down to the cellar, drew a
pail of water from the faucet, and coming in the kitchen threw it in the oven on
the burning wood. She then removed the wood from the oven and tossed it
outdoors. Words followed between the two, greatly angering the hired man. Mrs.
Sykes went back to the dining room to work on the quilt.
Chant got up from his chair, his face white with anger, and found the
automatic, which was owned by Sykes, who used it while on the police force. The
revolver was loaded. Mrs. Sykes saw him approach her with the revolver in his
hand. She became terrified and rose to her feet, dropping the unfinished quilt.
"This is what you are going to get for being so ugly," he shouted to her,
exhibiting the shooting piece in full view.
"For God's sake, don't shoot me! Please don't," the terror-stricken woman
pleaded with the man who had temporarily become insane with anger.
"Well, I'm going to," he growled, and leveled the firearm at the body of
the woman and pulled the trigger. He was within several feet of Mrs. Sykes when
he fired the shot.
The first bullet, headed straight for her heart, was stopped by a corset
steel. After striking the steel it changed its course and made a superficial
wound a few inches long, staying close to the skin in its short course in her
body. Seeing that the first shot had not done the work, he pulled the trigger
again. This time the bullet scraped her left shoulder, leaving a bad scar,
penetrated the side of her neck, and becoming lodged at the top of her spinal
She dropped to the floor. The hired man rushed to the wounded woman. He
felt of her, she said, murmuring the words in a trembling voice: "She's cold --
dead. What did I do that for? The only thing for me to do now is to make way
Draws Pistol on Himself
After repeating these words or [similar] in substance over to himself
several times, he placed the revolver to his cheek and fired, falling to the
floor, close to Mrs. Sykes, dying almost instantly. Mrs. Sykes said that she was
afraid to utter a word and feigned death for she was afraid that if he had found
that she was still living he would shoot the third time. The little girl, who
had witnessed the entire tragedy, was asked by her mother to run for assistance.
This the girl did and after much persistence succeeded in bringing the mail
carrier to the home.
The girl was asked at the inquest by the district attorney what the man
did after he shot himself. She replied, "Gee, he couldn't do anything. He was
dead." The body of the man was removed at the direction of the district attorney
to the undertaking parlors of Charles Rosenboom, 405 State street, where it will
be held pending the funeral arrangements. District Attorney Cooper will render a
verdict either today or Saturday.
Chant returned to this country more than a year ago, after receiving his
discharge from the army. He came to this village last fall and was employed by
Mr. Sykes to work on the farm, which he had recently purchased from M. A.
Russell. The purchase was made last September. Chant did not tell much of his
past life, but occasionally made mention of his participation in battles in
France and Belgium. Chant resided in this country several years prior to his
entering the service, working practically all of that time around Carthage.
A few years ago, he worked for Melvin Harvey on the Irish Settlement
road. Several years ago while at the farm of David Knapp, an elderly man, living
in Deer River, Chant was arrested upon the complaint of his employer, for
assault, it is said. He was given 30 days in the county jail. His mother and
father, besides three or four brothers and sisters, are living in Somerset,
England, this news being obtained from a letter received from his brother a few
weeks ago, and which was found in his pocket. They asked him in the letter to
write more often and were wondering whether or not he was dead.
Mrs. Sykes claims that the quarrel yesterday afternoon was the first that
she ever had with him, although she knew him to be quick-tempered from his
dealings with other people. He had seemed rational and showed no effects from
years of hardship in the war. From the fright and seriousness of her injuries,
Mrs. Sykes was unable to rise and was moved from the floor to her bed.
Mrs. Sykes is a member of the Chamberlain family, being a daughter of the
late Mr. and Mrs. Noah Chamberlain of this village, one of the best known
residents here. She was united in marriage 14 years ago to Mr. Sykes. Mr. Sykes
resigned as chief of police of the police force last July, after more than a
year of service. Previous to that time he had operated a cafe here. The house in
which they lived was formerly the office of Captain H. J. Welsh, located on
School street, and which was moved to the farm and remodeled.
Watertown Daily Times, about 5 Mar 1920
Funeral of Mrs. Sykes
Carthage, March 5 -- The funeral of Mrs. Minnie Chamberlain Sykes, who
died in the City hospital, Watertown, Monday morning, was held from St. James'
church Thursday morning at 9, Rev. Thomas Fogarty officiating. The bearers were
R. R. Lamont, Myron Golden, William Barry, Charles Stanford, and Fred Renaud.
Watertown Daily Times, 21 Jul 1919
Mrs. C. Bretsch Dies at Theresa
Theresa, July 21 -- Charles A. Giltz, local undertaker, left early Sunday
morning to take the body of Mrs. Clarence Bretsch to Watertown, where it was
placed upon a train to be sent to her home in Gary, Ind. for funeral and burial.
While hopes were entertained for Mrs. Bretsch's recovery as late as the middle
of the week, her condition became alarming on Friday, and she died on Saturday
at four, at the Commercial House where she and her husband were spending a part
of their vacation with George Bretsch, the father, and Floyd Bretsch, a brother.
Mrs. Bretsch was suffering from a severe case of poison ivy poisoning,
coming in contact with the weed at the home of her parents in Indiana, just
previous to coming here. She had suffered from influenza in the winter, from
which she never fully recovered, and was in a run down condition. It was in the
hopes that the change of air and the vigor of climate here would aid in bringing
about recovery that the trip was made here. It was planned to spend some time on
the St. Lawrence river. Mrs. Bretsch was a native of Indiana and was 30 years of
[Transcriber's note: Unfortunately the writer of the article never gets
around to mentioning the name of the deceased woman, and Clarence Bretsch
appears to have married at least three times.]
Watertown Daily Times, 24 Jun 1923
Fall Off Car is Fatal to Woman
Mrs. Bretsch of Lafargeville Dies in San Diego
Nearly 68 Years of Age -- Active in Church and Charter Member of
Body to be Brought East
Lafargeville, Jan. 24 -- Mrs. Minnie P. Bretsch, aged 68 years, a
resident of this village, died at 1 yesterday afternoon in a hospital in San
Diego, Calif. as a result of a fall from a streetcar Tuesday in which she
suffered a fracture at the base of the skull. Mrs. Bretsch expired without
regaining consciousness. The body will be brought east for funeral and burial,
arrangements to be announced later.
Mrs. Bretsch left here in November with her daughter, Miss Mabel Bretsch,
to spend the winter with her son, Dr. Garfield Bretsch, of San Diego. Word was
received here Friday of the accident, details of which are lacking. An operation
failed to bring any relief. Mr. Bretsch died a few years ago following an
accident while crossing the railroad tracks, never fully recovering.
Mrs. Bretsch was born Feb 28, 1853. In December, 1875, she was married to
Henry W. Bretsch of Lafargeville and they lived on a farm near Tanners Corners
until 1915, when Mr. Bretsch retired, buying property in the village and moving
here. Mrs. Bretsch was an active member of the Methodist Episcopal church and
Sunday school and of the Ladies' Aid. She was a charter member of Lafargeville
Grange, No. 15.
Surviving are three daughters, Mrs. Joseph Getman and Miss Mabel Bretsch
of Lafargeville, and Mrs. William Martin of Watertown; five sons, Webster L.
Bretsch and Addison Bretsch of Lafargeville; Dr. Garfield Bretsch of San Diego;
Albert Bretsch of Detroit, Mich.; and Harold Bretsch of Clayton; three sisters,
Mrs. John Rice of Lowville, Mrs. Bertha Grau of Lackawana, NY, and Mrs. William
Ba [illegible] of Rochester; two brothers, William and John of Beaver Falls.
Watertown Daily Times, 20 Nov 1915
Carthage, 20 Nov -- Word was received here late Thursday announcing the
death of Melvin Sykes in the Cornwall city hospital of Cornwall, Canada. The
deceased is a brother of Floyd Sykes of this village. He was well known here and
was a member of the Carthage lodge of Odd Fellows. The body passed through here
this morning to Oswegatchie, the former home of the deceased.
Mr. Sykes was about 40 years of age and is survived by his widow and two
children and by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Sykes of Oswegatchie, and by five
brothers, Floyd Sykes of this village, Earl, Claude, Theodore and Maurice Sykes
of Oswegatchie, and by four sisters.
Watertown Daily Times, 18 Mar 1924
Mrs. Mary Pierce, 73, Succumbs Near Plessis
Plessis, Mar 18 -- Mrs. Mary Pierce died at her home near Baucus school
house late Sunday evening. She was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Cushman Sprague of
the town of Theresa and was born in English Settlement, near Theresa, 73 years
Forty-seven years ago last October she was married to Joseph Pierce, also
of Theresa, who survives her. The couple resided at English Settlement three
years and then bought the farm and built the house in which they have since
Mrs. Pierce had been in poor health since sustaining a severe shock
several years ago, and was extremely lame as the result of a fall causing an
injured ankle, but her condition was not considered serious until Saturday and
her death resulted from an attack of gall stones.
Besides her husband, she leaves three brothers and one sister, Edward
[sic - should be Edgar C.] Sprague of Theresa, Hubbard, who lives on the
homestead farm at English Settlement, John of Alexandria and Mrs. Charles Bates
of Alexandria, besides the adopted son, Walter, and adopted daughter, Mrs. Frank
Rowell of Plessis [there seems to be some confusion or misinformation in the
references to adopted children].
She was for many years a consistent member of the Plessis Methodist
Episcopal church and her funeral will be held Wednesday at 12 at the house and 1
p.m. at the church. Rev. W. H. Bradley will conduct the services and burial will
be made in the family plot in Theresa cemetery.
Watertown Daily Times, 20 Jan 1910
Martin-Bretsch marriage notice
Lafargeville, Jan 20.- At noon Wednesday, at the residence of the bride's
parents, Mr. and Mrs. H. W. Bretsch, the marriage of their youngest daughter,
Bertha June, to William Martin of Lafargeville, took place.
The bride was gowned in white silk trimmed with lace and pearls, and wore
orange blossoms. She was attended by her sister, Mabel M. Bretsch, who was
attired in pink silk trimmed with duchess lace and wore pink carnations. The
bridegroom was attended by Dr. G.H. Bretsch of Auburn, a brother of the bride.
Miss Leta M. Bretsch, a cousin of the bride, played Lohengrin's wedding
march while the bridal party took their places beneath an arch of evergreens,
where the Rev. William P. Garrette performed the ceremony.
The bride's presents to the bridesmaid and waitresses were silver spoons,
while to the best man she gave a gold signet scarf pin.
After a wedding dinner, served by Misses Leta Bretsch, Gertrude Dollinger
and Carrie Corp, the bridal party left for Albany and other parts of the state.
Among the out of town guests were Robert Martin, father of the
bridegroom, Mr. and Mrs. James Martin, Potsdam, and Mr. and Mrs. Smith Rowell of
Watertown Daily Times, 19 Aug 1914
Bretsch - Thomas
Copenhagen, Aug 19  --The marriage of Miss Gladys E. Thomas,
daughter of Rev. and Mrs. William Thomas, to Webster L. Bretsch of Lafargeville,
took place quietly at noon Tuesday at the home of the bride's parents. The
ceremony was performed by the father of the bride. Miss Mabel Bretsch played the
wedding march. The bride wore a dainty gown of white shadow lace draped over net
and carried an arm bouquet of white roses. Her bridesmaid, Miss Bernadetta
Quinn, a college friend, wore a green silk gown. Dr. Garfield Bretsch, brother
of the groom, was best man. The ceremony was followed by a wedding dinner. Only
the families of the bridal couple were present. Mr. Bretsch and his bride left
for a trip through Fulton Chain of lakes. On their return they will reside in
Watertown Daily Times, 2 Jul 1913
Houghtaling - Sprague
Plessis, July 2 -- A quiet wedding took place at the parsonage last
Wednesday at 2 p.m., when Rev. W. P. Garrett married Miss Lucy Sprague of
Alexandria Bay and Earnest B. Houghtaling of Lorraine.
The couple were attended by Miss Flossie Rowell and Cushman Sprague,
brother of the bride. They left immediately for Watertown, and after visiting
friends in Oswego county, will reside on Mr. Houghtaling's farm near Adams.
Watertown Daily Times, 1 Mar 1924
Miss Hazel L. House is Bride of James H. Hagan
Former Service Man who Lost Leg in War is Wed at Alexandria
Alexandria Bay, Mar 1 -- James Harold Hagan of Lafargeville and Miss
Hazel Leola House of Alexandria Bay were married at noon today by Rev. O. F. [?
illegible] Raymond, pastor of the Methodist Episcopal church. They were attended
by Miss Hazel Lepper and Miss Florence Edmunds, both of this village.
Mr. Hagan is the son of Mr. and Mrs. James Hagan of Lafargeville. He is
23 years old and served 23 [? number illegible] months overseas in the World
war. He sustained a wound to his right leg which necessitated its amputation
[after] his return to this country.
The bride is 16 [? number illegible] and the daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
Henry House of Alexandria Bay.
Watertown Daily Times, 25 Dec 1923
Sprague - Davis
Theresa, Dec 25 -- Ivan Sprague and Miss Myrtle Davis, both of Perch
Lake, were quietly married at Theresa on Saturday evening. The ceremony was
performed at the parsonage of the Presbyterian church, by Rev. C. A. Riley in
the presence of a few of the relatives of the bride. The bridegroom is the son
of Adelbert Sprague and the bride is a daughter of George Robert Davis. They
will reside in Theresa after Jan 1.
Lowville, NY Journal and Republican, 17 Oct 1907
Denmark and Deer River
Marriage of DeForest C. Bretsch and Miss Julia May Rohr
Saturday, October 12 -- "Broad View," the home of Mr. and Mrs. C. M.
Rohr, was a scene of mirth and pleasure for on that day at noon their youngest
daughter, Miss Julia May Rohr, was united in marriage to M. DeForest Bretsch, of
Omar. Rev. James H. Keeling, pastor of the Congregational church at Deer River,
performed the ceremony.
The spacious parlors were profusely decorated with flowers and potted
plants. Yellow and green were the predominating colors. Miss Leta Bretsch played
Lohengrin's wedding march as the bride and groom entered the parlor unattended.
The bride is one of Deer River's worthy young ladies, with hosts of
admiring friends. The groom is an enterprising young man with bright prospects
for the future. The happy couple departed on the afternoon train from Carthage,
going north, for a short wedding tour and bearing with them the best wishes of
their many friends. They will make their future home at Carthage. We extend
congratulations and bespeak for Mr. and Mrs. Bretsch a long and prosperous life.
The bride was gowned in a traveling suit of wine-colored broadcloth. Only
immediate friends were present. After the usual congratulations the company
partook of a tempting wedding dinner. The bride's loaf was a present from
Haller's bakery at Carthage. The bridal presents were numerous and useful,
consisting of a beautiful white bedspread, table linen, silver and china ware,
besides several cash presents. Those from out of town present were the groom's
father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. P. B. Bretsch, two brothers, Claude and Earl,
and one sister, Miss Leta Bretsch, and grandmother, Mrs. Mary Green, of Omar,
and Miss Harriett Rich, of Lowville.
Watertown Daily Times, Saturday, 9 Sep 1922
Married at Alex. Bay
Alexandria Bay, Sept 9 -- A quiet wedding took place at the parsonage of
the Methodist Episcopal church on Thursday evening Sept. 7, the ceremony being
performed by the pastor, Rev. Oliver E. Raymond. The bride was Miss Alice Bates,
daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Bates, and the bridegroom was Lewis Elliott.
Both are residents of the town of Alexandria. Mr. and Mrs. Elliott will reside
on a farm near Omar.
Watertown Daily Times, Fri., 21 Feb 1913
Marcellus W. Sprague
Theresa, Feb. 21 -- At the home of his son, D. J. Sprague, Thursday
afternoon occurred the death of Marcellus W. Sprague, 76. Pneumonia was the
cause of death.
Four children, Delia Conger Sprague of Adams, D. J. Sprague of Theresa,
Mrs. Florence Simonds of Plessis and Mrs. Edith Soles of this village, survive.
He was a veteran of the Civil War. The funeral was held at 1 this afternoon from
his late home and at 2 at the Methodist Episcopal church. The ritualistic
service of the G. A. R. was carried out at the church. The officiating clergyman
was Rev. Mr. Garrett of Plessis. Interment was at Redwood. Mrs. Sprague died six
years ago last January.
Watertown Daily Times, 26 May 1899
Death of Mrs. Lucy SpragueTheresa, May 26 -- Mrs. Lucy
Sprague, wife of Cushman Sprague, died last evening at her home, four miles from
this village, aged 77 years. She was a daughter of the late Amos Wheeler, sister
of Milton Wheeler and of the late Mrs. Clifford Cheesman, and has a very large
circle of friends in this town and county.
The funeral will occur on Sunday at 12 from her late home.
Watertown Daily Times, 30 May 1899
Theresa -- Funeral of Mrs. Cushman Sprague
May 30 -- The funeral of Mrs. Cushman Sprague [Lucy M. Wheeler Sprague]
occurred yesterday and was very largely attended. Her sons John, Hubbard, Edward
[sic - Edgar C.] and Walter, acted as bearers and thus the remains of the
faithful and devoted mother were quietly laid in their last resting place by
loving hands. The daughters, Mrs. Charles Bates and Mrs. Joseph Pierce, were
present, as was also her brother, Milton Wheeler, and her sister, Mrs. Henry
Hanson, and many other relatives. Revs. Bury and Cheesman officiated.
[Transcriber's notes: Her gravestone in Oakwood Cemetery, Theresa, NY is
inscribed "MOTHER" [Sprague]. Again we find Edgar C. Sprague referred to as
"Edward." Walter Sprague is styled here as the son of Mrs. Cushman Sprague,
while in a previous article in this collection, he was called the "adopted son"
of Mary (Sprague) Pierce, i.e., the Mrs. Joseph Pierce in the above article.]
Watertown Daily Times, 26 Jan 1916
Plessis Couple Celebrate Their Golden Wedding
Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Sykes Hold Family Party At Their Home
Plessis, Jan 26 -- On January 18, 1866, Mary V. Timmerman and Lewis
Sykes, both of Alexandria, were united in marriage at Theresa, by Rev. L. Clark,
and on Tuesday last celebrated their golden wedding anniversary, at their home
here, with a quiet family party of their children and grandchildren, and a few
old-time friends and neighbors.
Mr. and Mrs. Sykes went to housekeeping in Alexandria, but later moved to
Pillar Point, where they resided for a number of years, returning to Alexandria
about 30 years ago, to care for the aged parents of Mr. Sykes. About 14 years
ago they purchased the pleasant home near the village, where they now reside.
Two children were born to them, Mrs. Jennie Holkins, who lives near them, and
Mrs. Lillian George, who with her husband and daughters, Geneva and Myrtle,
reside with the aged couple.
Mr. Sykes is a veteran of the Civil war, having seen three years' hard
service as an enlisted member of Company F, 10th New York Heavy Artillery.
Always a social, genial couple, Mr. and Mrs. Sykes, or "Lew and Mary," as
they are often called, have a large circle of friends, who sincerely wish for
them, many years yet of comfort and happiness.
[Transcriber's note: Lewis Sykes died that same year, 18 Oct 1916, age 78
Watertown Daily Times, about 15 Sep 1875
1875 Redwood Fair
John Sykes, a substantial farmer of 70 years of Alexandria, exhibits 11
horses; 2 cows; 25 different samples of apples; 2 pigs 9 weeks old, and weighing
100 lbs. each. This is only a specimen of what he has got at home.
Watertown Daily Times, Thu., 13 Dec 1928
Farmer Dies As Result of Fall
Injuries Sustained Last Summer Fatal
John Sprague, 73,
Dies Suddenly at His Home near Plessis -- Was Well Known Resident of
the Town of Alexandria
Plessis, Dec 13 -- John Sprague, 73, well-known resident of the town of
Alexandria died suddenly this morning at his home at Baucus Corners, three miles
from this village.
Mr. Sprague was injured last summer in a fall from a load of hay. He
never fully recovered although he had been able to assist in light work about
the farm. He appeared to be in his usual health this morning. While his
daughter, Mrs. Lucy Houghtaling, was preparing his breakfast, he fell back into
his chair and died a few seconds later.
A native of English Settlement near Theresa, Mr. Sprague was a son of
Lucy and Cushman Sprague -- pioneer settlers of that region. It is said he was a
direct descendant of a pilgrim who came over in the Mayflower. His ancestors
settled in the Town of Theresa when that section was a virgin wilderness.
[Transcriber's note: The pilgrim lines are through both John SPRAGUE and his
wife Sally HUBBARD (both buried in Old Theresa cemetery) via SARGEANT to
Mayflower passengers John HOWLAND and John TILLEY. Transcriber does not know if
any descendant of this Theresa pioneer couple has ever joined the Mayflower
Mr. Sprague resided on a farm in the town of Theresa until about 40 years
ago when he came to Alexandria. He purchased the farm now owned by his son,
Cushman Sprague, adjoining the place where he died. On 31 Dec 1878 he married
Eva Petrie of Redwood. She died 19 Jul 1917. He was a member of the Plessis
Methodist Episcopal church and the Plessis Grange, No. 629 P. of H.
He is survived by one son Cushman Sprague; three daughters, Mrs. Lucy
Houghtaling, Mrs. Harry Caswell, Plessis, and Mrs. Gerald Backus, Lafargeville;
one brother, Hubbard Sprague, Theresa, one sister, Mrs. Charles Bates, town of
Alexandria, several grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held at the Plessis Methodist Episcopal church
at 11 a.m. Sunday. Rev. W. J. Hancock will officiate. Interment will be made in
the family plot at Theresa cemetery.
Watertown Daily Times, 1 Oct 1928
Mrs. Jennie E. Holkins, 61, Succumbs at Plessis Home
Plessis, Oct. 1 -- Mrs. Jennie Elizabeth Holkins, 61, widow of Stanton
Holkins, died at her home here early this morning. Her death followed a series
She was the daughter of Lewis and Mary Timmerman Sykes. She was married
24 June 1903 to Stanton Holkins. She had lived in this vicinity her entire life,
with the exception of a few years during her childhood, which were spent at
Surviving are one sister, Mrs. Fred George of Plessis; three
step-daughters, Mrs. Leonard Moshier and Mrs. Frank Ronas, both of Philadelphia,
and Mrs. Charles Hunter of Plessis; two uncles, Valentine Timmerman of Dexter
and John Sykes of Fine; one aunt Mrs. Nettie Sykes of Ainsworth, Nebraska; two
nieces, Mrs. Earl Bretsch and Mrs. Gilson Clyde of Plessis.
The funeral will be held Wednesday at 1 pm at the house, Rev. W. J.
Hancock officiating. The bearers will be Leonard Moshier and Frank Ronas of
Philadelphia, Charles Hunter and Earl Bretsch, Gilson Clyde of Plessis and
Charles Sykes of Fine.
Watertown Daily Times, 11 Dec 1916
Mrs. John Sykes
Mrs. John Sykes, of Vrooman Ridge, town of Fine, who died Sunday, Dec. 3,
at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Robert McDonald, in Oswego, aged 59 years, was
the mother of 12 children. Mrs. Sykes had been an invalid for four years, the
result of a shock. Death was due to the third of a series of shocks.
She was born in the town of Alexandria in 1857, [Jane Amelia Parker], the
daughter of the late Mr. [James F.] and Mrs. [Betsy Nixon] Parker of Alexandria
Bay. She was married when 18 years old. Nine of her children survive.
Her husband, John Sykes, and nine following children survive: Earl,
Charles, and Claude Sykes of Fine; Floyd Sykes of Carthage; Mrs. Robert McDonald
of Oswego; Mrs. John Geary, of Watertown; Maurice, Miss Ethel and Theodore Sykes
of Vrooman Ridge.
The funeral was held from Fine Methodist Episcopal church and interment
was made in the family plot in Fine cemetery. The following relatives from out
of town were present at the funeral; Mrs. Edward Rogers, Mr. and Mrs. John
Parker, Philadelphia; Mr. and Mrs. Fred George, Mrs. and Mrs. Samuel Hawkins of
Plessis; Mrs. Edward Haas [? illegible], Mrs. James Parker, Wesley Parker and
Fred Nixon of Alexandria Bay; Mr. and Mrs. James E. Clark of Watertown, and Noah
Chamberlain of Carthage.
Watertown Daily Times, 5 Jun 1916
Mrs. Jane Hagen
Dexter, June 5 -- Mrs. Jane Hagen, widow of Adam Hagen, passed away at
her home in Perch River last night, at the age of 86. Mr. Hagen died in 1901.
Mrs. Hagen is survived by two brothers, Henry Allison, of Limerick, and Simon
Allison, of Brownville. Arrangements have not yet been made for the funeral.
Watertown Daily Times, 1 June 1916
Jas. F. Parker, Alexandria Bay Farmer, Dies Suddenly
He was a Native of Here, but Had Lived in Alexandria
Alexandria Bay, June 1 -- James F. Parker died suddenly at noon on
Tuesday at his home, which is about three miles from this place. He was 65 years
and 8 months old.
Mr. Parker was born in Theresa in 1850, the son of the late James Parker
and Betsy Nixon. Several years ago he came to this town and had lived on the old
Parker homestead for several years and worked the farm. Mr. Parker was well
known in this village and in the surrounding country.
Mr. Parker leaves his widow and a large family of children, some being at
The funeral will be held from his late home on Friday afternoon at 2.
Rev. C. F. Benjamin, pastor of the Reformed church, will officiate and interment
will be made in the family plot in the cemetery at Plessis.
Watertown Daily Times, 16 Jun 1923
Jacob W. Bretsch
Lafargeville, 26 Jan  -- Friday afternoon occurred the sudden death
of Jacob W. Bretsch, a highly respected citizen of this village. Mr. Bretsch,
while working over some machinery, was stricken with heart failure and died
without regaining consciousness. His sudden demise was a great shock to the
community as he was apparently in good health immediately before his death. Mr.
Bretsch, the youngest of a family of six children, was born in the Town of
Alexandria, 25 June 1850, and for about 20 years has been a resident of this
place, during which time he has gained a worthy reputation for his honesty,
integrity and sterling business qualities. Mr. Bretsch is survived by his widow
and two sons, Homer of New York and Huron J. of this village. He also leaves one
brother, Henry W., of Omar, and a sister, Mrs. Ferdinand Tafel, of Beaver Falls.
Homer Bretsch of Hastings-on-Hudson, John Haller of Deer River, Frank and
DeForest Bretsch of Carthage, George Tafel of New York, Mr. and Mrs. Ferdinand
Tafel of Beaver Falls, Mr. and Mrs. Orlo Hardy, Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Hardy of
Philadelphia, and Rev. Dr. Bentley and E. N. Becker of Syracuse attended the
funeral of J. W. Bretsch Monday afternoon.
Watertown Daily Times, 26 Jan 1909
Lafargeville Merchant Dead
Huron J. Bretsch, 49, Expires After Long Illness With Bright's
Lafargeville, Jun 16 -- Huron J. Bretsch, 49, died at this home here at
7:15 this morning following an illness of three weeks. He had been suffering
from Bright's disease and had been in poor health for about six years.
Mr. Bretsch was born in Lafargeville, Aug 24, 1873, the son of the late
Jacob and Mary Elliott Bretsch. The death of his mother occurred about two
months ago. Mr. Bretsch attended school here and later was a student at Oswego
Normal school. On July 5, 1905, he was married to Harriett M. Sargent of this
village. For two years he was assistant superintendent in the brick industry at
Tarrytown-on-the-Hudson and later taught at Patchogue, Long Island.
Coming back to Lafargeville 14 years ago, he entered the mercantile
business under the firm name of H. J. and W. L. Bretsch Mercantile company.
He had been an active worker in the Methodist Protestant church and has
held office in many of its organizations. At the time of his death he was
assistant superintendent of the Sunday school although he had been acting
superintendent for the past year.
Mr. Bretsch is survived by his wife, two sons, Lawrence and Howard, and a
brother, Homer L. Bretsch of Hastings-on-Hudson.
The funeral will be from the home at 2 on Monday afternoon, Rev. Ivan
Howland of the Methodist Protestant church officiating. Burial will be at
Watertown Daily Times, 15 Sep 1874
Hon. Amos Reed, ex-Gov. of Utah, is here visiting his aged father [John
Savage Reed] who is about 90 years old, yet is smart and active. Gov. Reed is a
man of talent and rare social abilities and now resides near Washington, DC.
[Transcriber's note: Amos Reed was appointed a territorial secretary of
Utah by Abraham Lincoln. Upon the death of Governor Doty of WI, he became Acting
Governor, and the title stayed with him after he returned to Washington, DC. He
is buried in Beltsville, MD, near Washington.]
Oswego Palladium-Times, 8 Jun 1940
Homer L. Bretsch
Word was received in Oswego Saturday of the death of Homer L. Bretsch,
alumnus of Oswego Normal school, at his home in Hastings-on-Hudson Friday. He
was 70 years old, and for 39 years was general science teacher in New York City
Mr. Bretsch was graduated from the Oswego school in 1898, and was a
member of the alumni executive council in 1936-37. He had attended alumni
reunions here. Mr. Bretsch was inventor of the tellurium, a rotating globe used
at the Normal school and similar institutions for study of the moon, stars and
A native of Lafargeville, Mr. Bretsch taught in Long Island before
joining the staff of New York City schools in 1900. He retired last year.
Surviving are his widow and three daughters, Mrs. Homer C. Odell of Springfield,
Mass.; Mrs. W. E. Burbank of Westfield, N.J.; and Miss Eleanor Bretsch of
Newburgh. His brother [sic - should be cousin], Dr. B[rayton] S. Bretsch, Oswego
optometrist, died several years ago.
Watertown Daily Times, 13 Dec 1910
Observe 35th Anniversary
Friends Gather at Home of Mr. and Mrs. H. W. Bretsch at
Lafargeville, Dec 13 -- On Thursday evening the members of the Omar
Ladies Aid and their husbands, and the relatives and neighbors of Mr. and Mrs.
H. W. Bretsch gave them a pleasant surprise at their home at Hillside cottage
near Lafargeville, the occasion being the 35th anniversary of their marriage.
The guests began to arrive about 5 p.m. and found the unsuspecting bride
and groom in the act of preparing their evening meal. They retired for a few
minutes after which they reappeared having put on their "wedding garments," and
were formally introduced to the company. The bride wore real orange blossoms,
the gift of one of the guests. The evening was pleasantly spent in visiting,
during which a bountiful supper was served to 66. The host and hostess were
presented with a beautiful Morris chair. After suitable responses from the bride
and groom, the company joined in singing several good old hymns.
Those present were: Rev. and Mrs. W. P. Garrett, Mr. and Mrs. John Hotis,
and son John Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Henry Wetterhahn, Mr. and Mrs. Charles
Schollenberg, Mr. and Mrs. David Bretsch, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Tuttle, Mr. and
Mrs. Alvaro Halloway, Mr. and Mrs. John Garlock, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel L. Britton,
Mr. and Mrs. H. O. Newton, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Baltz, Mr. and Mrs. G. W. Zimmer,
Mr. and Mrs. Ogilvie Petrie, Mr. and Mrs. Roswell Houghton, Mr. and Mrs. Millard
Snow, Mr. and Mrs. Sardis Reed, Mr. and Mrs. B. J. Greene, Mr. and Mrs. Bert
Hollaway and family, Mr. and Mrs. L. E. Ostrander, Peter Bretsch and family,
Mrs. Mary Greene, Mr. and Mrs. Horace Caswell and family, Mr. and Mrs. J. S.
Getman and family, Mrs. F. B. Strough, and daughter Harriette, W. L. Bretsch,
Mabel M. Bretsch, Addison Bretsch, Harold Bretsch, and Mr. and Mrs. William
Watertown Daily Times, 21 Jul 1917
Henry W. Bretsch Son of German Emigrants
Had Been Prominent Farmer of Lafargeville When Death Occurred
Lafargeville, Jul 30 -- The funeral of Herny W. Bretsch, aged 74 years,
and a well known retired farmer of the town of Alexandria, who died at 7:45
Thursday morning at his home in Lafargeville, will be held from his home at 1:30
p.m. Saturday. Interment will be made in the family plot in Omar cemetery.
Mr. Bretsch had been in failing health for eight years. Five weeks ago he
sustained a paralytic stroke and had been forced to remain in bed. His condition
had been critical during the past two weeks.
He was born 21 Jun 1843, in the town of Alexandria, son of the late
Lawrence and Victoria Schrodt Bretsch, and had always lived there until two
years ago, when he retired from active occupation on the farm and came to this
place, where he had since resided. His parents came to this locality from
Germany in 1837, settling in the town of Alexandria.
Mr. Bretsch married Miss Minnie Cramer [sic - should be Premer] of
Lowville, 8 Dec 1875, who with seven children survives him. They are Dr. G. H.
Bretsch of San Diego, Cal.; Albert Bretsch of Detroit, Mich.; Webster, Addison
and Harold Bretsch, all of Lafargeville, and two daughter, Mrs. J. S. Getman and
Mrs. William Martin, both of Lafargeville. Several grandchildren also survive.
He was an active member of Lafargeville Methodist Episcopal church.
Watertown Daily Times, 25 May 1928
G.W. Bretsch, , Theresa, Dies
Prominent Business Man Expires in City
Had Been Ill Few
On May 1 He Gave Banquet at Theresa to County Officials and Supervisors
in Observance of his 76th Birthday
Theresa, May 25 -- George W. Bretsch, aged 76 years, prominent business
man and politician of this village, died at the House of the Good Samaritan at
Watertown this morning at 1 of heart trouble.
Mr. Bretsch had been in ill health for the past few weeks but his
condition had been serious only since last Tuesday when he was removed to the
hospital at Watertown.
On May 1 Mr. Bretsch was host at a banquet given at the Commercial house
here for the county officials and members of the county board of supervisors.
Mr. Bretsch was a Democrat and always had been interested in politics but he had
never served in any public office.
Mr. Bretsch was born on May 1, 1852 near Fishers Landing, a son of the
late Henry and Mary Bretsch, native of Germany. He married Miss Sabina [Sabrina]
Robbins more than 52 years ago. His wife died in 1926.
Mr. Bretsch had always lived in this section. He was in business for a
number of years. For several years he was proprietor of the Commercial house
here. Recently he had operated a general store in the village. He was well known
in Masonic circles.
He is survived by two sons, Clarence and Floyd of Gary, Indiana; one
daughter, Mrs. Pearl Horner of Syracuse; one brother, Brayton of Oswego; and two
sisters, Mrs. Fred Hotis of Evans Mills and Mrs. Charles Schollenberg of Fishers
Funeral arrangements are incomplete.
Watertown Daily Times, 1 May 1917
Quits Hotel To Enter The Army
Floyd H. Bretsch Is Scheduled To Receive A Captain's
Theresa, May 1 -- Floyd H. Bretsch gave over the management of the
Commercial House this morning to his father, George Bretsch, in order that he
might give his whole time to the service of the United States war department.
There is now little doubt but what Mr. Bretsch will be given a captain's
commission in the newly organized army and will probably receive his appointment
within a few days.
Mr. Bretsch is a veteran of the Spanish-American war and as soon as
conditions began to look serious between this government and Germany, he began
winning volunteers for the United States army, securing several within a few
days and taking them to Fort Slocum, where he was told that he was the champion
recruiter of all that had thus far appeared at the fort.
While away Mr. Bretsch visited Washington and after conferring with
Senators Carder [? illegible] and Wadsworth, decided to make application to
enter the army and was given an audience with Adjutant General H. D. McCain of
the war department. He was advised that he would probably be given a captain's
commission at a very early date and will probably be assigned to service in the
quartermaster department, as his knowledge of buying supplies for his hotel here
would be of value to the department in that branch of the service.
While conducting the Commercial House here, Mr. Bretsch made a splendid
record as a hotel man, the people of the North Country making it a gathering
place for their Sunday dinners and many of the leading banquets of the country
were given at the Commercial House. George Bretsch, who takes over the hotel
today, was formerly connected with the house, being the owner and manager before
the place was purchased by his son.
[Transcriber's note: Still looking for information on Floyd Bretsch's
service as an officer in World War I. His obituary mentions only that he was a
veteran of the Spanish-American war.]
Journal Republican (Lowville, NY), 7 Jul 1932
Floyd Sykes Kills Himself
Found by His Son Thursday Morning With Bullet Hole Through Head --
Born at Harrisville in 1883
Floyd Sykes, 49, took his own life at his home, 136 North Mechanic
street, Carthage, some time Wednesday evening, June 29, by shooting himself
through the head with a revolver. He was last seen in a lunch car about 9
o'clock in the evening. His son went to the room to call him Thursday morning.
Receiving no response, he climbed onto the porch roof and saw the body on the
floor. Financial troubles were thought to be the cause of the man's act.
He was born in Harrisville, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Sykes. He has
resided in Carthage for about 20 years. Mr. Sykes served a short time as chief
of police and was engaged in the restaurant and hotel business, conducting the
Levis hotel for a time. He was twice married. His first wife was Rosa [Minnie]
Chamberlain. His second wife was Lillian O'Leary, who survives, with two sons,
Floyd and Theodore; three sisters, Mrs. J. Geary, Copenhagen, Ethel Johnson and
Pearl McDonald, Harrisville; five brothers, Charles, Claude, Morris,
Harrisville, and Theodore, Copenhagen, and Earl, Watertown.
[Transcriber's note: His name appears in some sources as Florin L. Sykes.
The 1880 U.S. census, Jefferson County, Town of Alexandria, seems to list him as
a female child named Florence, born July, 1879. None of the names Floyd,
Florence nor Florin is found in the Sykes family group in the 1900 U.S. census,
Saint Lawrence County, Town of Fine. This item also makes no mention of a
daughter Frances that he and his first wife apparently adopted.]
Watertown Daily Times, Sat., 28 Jul 1917
Mrs. Eva Sprague
Plessis, July 28 -- The funeral of Mrs. Eva Sprague, wife of John M.
Sprague, which took place at the home Saturday afternoon, was very largely
attended, many people from out of town besides relatives being present. Rev. A.
S. Haven officiated, and burial was made in the family plot in Theresa cemetery.
Eva Petrie was born in the town of Alexandria about 59 years ago, and was
the oldest of the five children of the late Martin and Almina Andrus Petrie of
Redwood. She was married when quite young to John M. Sprague of Theresa, and
lived for several years in the town of Theresa. About 30 years ago they
purchased the farm at Baucus Settlement, where they have since resided.
Mrs. Sprague had been a sufferer from cancer for several years. She was a
member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and until recently a teacher in the
She leave besides her husband, a son, Cushman, who now manages the farm;
three daughters, Lucy, now Mrs. Ernest Houghtaling, of Adams; Mabel, now Mrs.
Harry Caswell, of Lafargeville, and Elsie, who resides at home; also her mother,
Mrs. Almina Petrie, of Redwood, and brother, Frank Petrie, of Redwood, and three
sisters, Mrs. Esther West, Redwood; Mrs. Edwin Houghtaling, Adams, and Mrs.
Minnie Vrooman, of Santa Cruz, Cal.
[Transcriber's note: Last paragraph is cut off in scanned image].
Watertown Daily Times, 12 Oct 1917
Johnson - Sykes
Fine, Oct 12 -- George Johnson, ticket agent for the New York Central
lines at Oswegatchie, NY, and Miss Ethel Sykes, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John
Sykes of Vrooman Ridge, NY, were married at 1:30 Thursday afternoon, Rev. E. H.
Chub, pastor of Fine Methodist Episcopal church, officiating.
They were attended by the Misses Arloween Clark of 133 North Hamilton
St., Watertown, and Gladys Lilis, of Star Lake, and Morris Sykes of Vrooman
Ridge, brother of the bride, and William Kelly of Oswegatchie. The bride was
gowned in white crepe-de-chine with pear trimmings, and wore a bride's veil with
orange blossoms. She carried white roses. The bridesmaids were attired in gowns
of white net and carried pink carnations.
Following the ceremony, Mr. Johnson and his bride left on the 3:10
[train] Thursday afternoon for a wedding trip that will include Buffalo, Niagara
Falls, Rochester, Syracuse and Watertown. They will make their home with the
bride's parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Sykes, of Vrooman Ridge. Mr. Johnson is the
son of Mr. and Mrs. Delbert [? illegible] Johnson of Fine, NY.
Watertown Daily Times, 4 Sep 1924
Mrs. Emma L. Deckwa
News was received here today of the death of Mrs. Emma LaGraves Deckwa,
20, at Madera, Cal. She is survived by her husband, Ralph E. Deckwa, and one
son, Edison Ralph, who is only a week old, and her father and mother, Mr. and
Mrs. George LaGraves of Delhi, Cal., and three brothers, Hermon, Arthur, and
William LaGraves, all of Delhi. Mrs. Deckwa had spent her entire life in Stone
Mills [Jefferson Co., NY] until she went to California with her parents about
three years ago.
Jefferson County Journal of Adams, 11 June 1889
SYKES -- Lorinda Sykes died near Plessis, June 4, wife of John, aged 75
y, 8 m, and 3 d.
Watertown Daily Times, 14 Mar 1877
THOMPSON -- At the residence of her son, Bodwell Thompson, in Norwich,
Chenango Co., [NY], March 12th  of varioloid, Mrs. Achsa Thompson, aged 70
years, 10 months, widow of the deceased Ichabod Thompson. Buried on the same day
at 1 o'clock p.m.
[Transcriber's note: Achsah and Ichabod Thompson have gravestones in
Brookside cemetery, Plessis, NY.]
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