Jefferson County, NY Pioneers



WILLIAM GOLDEN has been a problem for me since high school. He seems to have lied a lot or just couldn't keep facts straight. I still know very little about him, after 40 years of research. He named his son Justus and he may be closely related to other Golden families in Herkimer, NY.

Our oldest living relative, an Aunt Jennie Golden, who has long since died, claimed he was Mohawk Valley Dutch and was born in Lancaster, Adams County, Pennsylvania. There is an early Pennsylvania newspaper account of a William Golden, born in Lancaster on February 20, 1803. His fatherís name was John. His mother was not mentioned. No additional information was provided or has been found on this William.

There was a William Golden, age 21, a farmer that came from Ireland to Barnstable, Massachusetts in 1824 that could have been my William. No other additional information has been found on that William either.

Williamís Civil War records note that he was born as a Goulding in Littlefield, Herkimer County, NY. This place cannot be located and evidently no longer exists. Perhaps he combined Little Falls and Litchfield for the name. They are next door and both in Herkimer County. Henderson was also a part of Herkimer County when he was born.

1810 Census Records

All the following people had a child under 10 years old that could have been my William Golden, who was apparently born in 1803 and would have been 7 in 1810. These records have a lot of errors and he could have been recorded as 10, if he was tall for his age. John Owen Golden was living in Albany County at this time.
Golden, Amos Herkimer 448 10010-20010-00
Golden, David V. W. Herkimer 487 00220-30200-00
Golden, Jesse Herkimer 449 00010-30010-00
Golden, Justus Herkimer 447 01201-00101-00

1830 Census Records

A William Golden in Hopewell, Hunterdon County, New Jersey was not the right age.

A William Golden was found in Pittstown, Rensselaer county, New York on Roll M19-105, Page 138, Image 276 and he was the right age.

Other William Goldens in Mount Joy, Adams County; Kittanning, Armstrong County; Brecknock, Lancaster County and Mount Pleasant, Westmoreland County Pennsylvania were all the wrong ages.

A William Golden was found in Spafford, Onondaga County, New York on Roll M19-100, Page 351, Image 685. He was 20 to 30 years of age, as was his wife. They had one male child over 5 and under 10 years of age, one female child under five and one female 15 and under 20 in the home. There was also another male over 20 and under 30 that could have been this girlís husband or they could have been boarders or hired live-in help. That William Golden did not appear on the 1840 Spafford census. There was also a John Owen Golden on the 1830 Spafford census. There is a possibility that John Owen Golden went from New Jersey to Pennsylvania for a short time and then went north to Spafford, but this John was found living in the Albany area on earlier census records. Those Goldens came from New Jersey and were there for the 1790 census.

The Borodino Cemetery Records for the Town of Spafford, in Onodaga County, New York list:

Golden, Abigail, died February 12, 1840, age 33, wife of William Golden.
Golden, Albert, died March 30, 1835, age 10 years - 9 months - 15 days, son of Abigail & William Golden.
There is no additional information on this William Golden. Abigail was probably born in 1807 and Albert was apparently born on June 15, 1824. Abigail would have been 17 or possibly 18 at the time of Albertís birth.

1835 New York Census Records

William Golden could not be found on the 1835 New York State Census records, as most were missing.

1840 Census Records

A William Goulding was first found in Henderson, Jefferson County, New York on the 1840 Census on Roll M704-291, Page 1, Image 227. The census notes one male and one female between the ages of 30 and 40. This is most likely William and his wife. There is also a male child 5 to 10, two females under 5, and a female 15 to 20 in the household then. This family is all accounted for on the 1850 census, except for the female teenager.

Williamís first wife was listed elsewhere as Katie Mosier by his son Justus, and she died, on August 26, 1849, in Henderson. Justus also said she died when he was eight years old. He would have been 9 in September 1849, and 10 just two months after this census was taken and his age matches his September 14, 1840 birth date that was also in question. Katieís death certificate offered very little useful information, not even her full and maiden names. Her grave site has never been found. William listed his wifeís name as Catherine Lane on his original pension application. He was 76 at the time and perhaps confused enough to combine the first name of his first wife with the last name of his second wife. This listing could also be the result of dyslexia, which could be hereditary.

His second wifeís first name was listed as Margaret and Margaretta on other documents. Margaretís maiden name was listed as Lane on other documents. She claims that she was lawfully married to William, at Sackets Harbor, by Samuel Boyden, a Justice of the Peace, on April 15, 1862. She also claims elsewhere that this was her first marriage, she had no children from a prior marriage and she was about 46 years of age at this time. Samuel and the only marriage witness were both dead when a record of this marriage was first requested.

1845 New York Census Records

The 1845 New York Census records have been lost.

1850 Census Records

A William Golden was found in the 1850 Henderson Census on Roll M432-515, Page 224, Image 13, taken 12 July 1850, as follows.
22442102107 Golden William 47 male farmer NY
2241102107 Golden Betsey 15 female   NY
2242102107 Golden Celestia 12 female   NY
2243102107 Golden Justus M 9 male   NY
The family broke up shortly after this census. Betsey has not been found on any later census records. She may have moved back to the Spafford area, if that is where William lived prior to moving to Henderson. Celestia would be later known as Lettie. She married William Cross and they always lived in Henderson. She was killed on August 26, 1918, in a auto accident. Her son, William Leslie ďLesĒ, was driving the car. Justus went to Illinois, as a teenager and joined a Civil War unit there. He moved back to Henderson, after the war, married Elizabeth Storrs and they always lived in Henderson, after their marriage.

1855 New York Census Records

The 1855 Census for Hounsfield, NY lists William Golden as a 35 year old male, born in Herkimer County, NY. He was working and living with David Bettenger as a farm laborer. Williamís dad was born in New Jersey, per the 1855 census, and William may have been, as well.

William married Margaretta Lane at Sacketts Harbor, NY on April 15, 1862. She was married under the name Margaret Lane to William Golding by Samuel Boyden, a Justice of the Peace. She later said that there was no legal barrier to this marriage. William had been previously married to Katie Mosier, who died in the summer of 1849 and she was never previously married. She remained a widow after his death.

1865 New York Census Records

The 1865 Census for Henderson, NY lists:
Goulding, William age 66 Male White Farm Laborer Born in NY
Goulding, Margaret age 43 Female White Keeps house born in England

1870 Census Records

The 1870 Census dated July 12, 1870 for Adams, Jefferson County, NY on Roll 944, Page 28 lists:
Goulding, William age 66 Male White born NY
His son, Justus M. Goulding was living in Henderson on Roll 944, Page 353.

1875 New York Census Records

The 1875 Census, dated June 4, 1855 for Hounsfield, Jefferson County Census
Golden William age 35 male laborer widower
born in Herkimer Countyliving with and working for Daniel Bettenger age 30 

1880 Census Records

The 1880 census, dated June 2, 1880 lists:
William Golding 77 Born NYS Father born NJ Mother in NYS
Margaret Golding 60 Born in England Father born in England Mother born in Ireland

1890 Census Records

The 1890 Surviving Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, and Widows Census lists Margaretta Golden, widow of William Golden living in Henderson, NY.

The census taken 8 June 1875 in Henderson, NY shows the following:

Justice Goulden age 32 born Jefferson County
Elizabeth (Storrs) Goulden, wife age 32 born Jefferson County
Addie M. Goulden age 6 born Jefferson County
Jessie Goulden age 5 born Jefferson County
Holland Goulden age 2 born Jefferson County
Hollie Goulden age 2 born Jefferson County

The census taken July 18, 1880 shows the following:

Justus Golding 38 born in New York State Father born NYS Mother born NYS
Elizabeth Storrs Golding 37 born in NYS Father born in Vt. Mother born in Vt.
Addie 12   
Justus M. 9(Surprise, Surprise)   
Holland 7   
Hollie 7   
James 5   
Rose 1   

The census date of June 2, 1880 shows:

William Golding 77 Born NYS Father born NJ Mother in NYS
Margaret Golding 60 Born in England Father born in England Mother born in Ireland.

Cemetery Records

Evergreen Cemetery

Burial Permits Requested Records for Roberts Corners(Evergreen Cemetery), near Adams, NY show a request for:
William Golding, age 83 died 2-23-1886
The actual burial record shows:
Golden, William died 2-23-1886 age 83 years, 3 months (the death certificate age at death is 84 years and 11 months).

This would make his birthday on November 20, 1802, but the M could have been a D and he could have been born on February 20, 1803 (and could be the William Golden, born in Lancaster, PA). His tombstone also has 20th NY Cal engraved on it. Williamís birth year is listed as 1803 on another Civil War paper.

Burial Permits Requested Records for Roberts Corners, (Evergreen Cemetery) Nnar Adams, NY show a request for:

William Golding age 83 died 2-23-1886
Margaret Golding age 68 died 12-31-1893
Justus Golden died 9-24-1917.
Elizabeth Golden died 8-26-1918

Additional burials show:

Golden, Margretta, died 12-31-1893 age 68 years (Williamís second wife).
Golden, Justus M. 1840-1917
Golden, Elizabeth Storrs, his wife, 1842-1917).
Golden, Addie, their daughter, 1869-1895, (See Golden-Fairbanks Monument).


Williamís widow was living in Henderson, NY on April 14, 1886 when she appeared before a Special County Judge of the County Court being a Court of Record within and for the County and State. She was sixty years of age then. She was duly sworn according to law, and made a declaration in order to obtain the Pension provided by Acts of Congress granting pensions to widows: That she was the widow of William Golding, who enlisted under the name William Golding at Sacketts Harbor, NY, on the 21st day of September A.D. 1863 in Company M 20th Cavalry, N.Y. Volunteers in the war of the Rebellion, who while in said service incurred a Right Scrotal Hernia and that for the said injury he received a pension under Pension Certificate No. 122.239 and that the said pensioner died from the aforesaid injury on February 23, 1886.

The one page from NYS Archives notes his age as 44 on 21 September 1863 at Sacketts Harbor and he was mustered in to Company M of the 20th NY Calvary on 30 Sept 1863. All men between the age of 16 and 45 were considered eligible for military service at that time. The next line is blank, except for his age of 62 listed. He was a private.

William was first sent to a Military Hospital in Newport News, Virginia and then transferred to an island hospital in New York Harbor. He was reported as deserted from the David's Island Military hospital in NY Harbor on October 31, 1864. Actually he went home on recovery leave and was too sick and old to return. A letter was sent to explain his problem and it was lost in the mail. His charge of desertion was later dropped. He was given an honorable discharge and all veteran and pension rights were restored. These included the large tombstone over his grave site, one that he could never afford to buy on his farmerís income.

William and his son, Justus, were both in the Civil war and they both changed their name to Golden, sometime after 1870. The name remains Golden now.

For further information, contact:
Jim Golden

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