Thursday, July 10, 2014

Comstock's History Page Nineteen

CAYUGA COUNTY NEW YORK by Austin B. Comstock

I will be posting each page of this history separately. The index, posted on June 24, 2014 in 4 parts, provides the page numbers; you can also search the blog for a particular name appearing anywhere within it. 
The index is also published at and will eventually have a link back to this blog.
I hope you find something new!

Page Nineteen

Barthorn Coughin            Died at Andersonville
Robert Gleason
Jerry Collins                     Bullet in forehead in 1879; now in Willard State Hospital
Dixon Perry
S. W. Green
John Myers
John Waite
Henry Masten
Alanson Tracy                Mortally wounded

Tracy lived here but enlisted from Detroit Michigan. In 1857, Mansfield B. Kerr bought 25 acres of Colonel Lyon and graded a ½ mile trotting track. The following year, the Southern Cayuga County Agricultural Society was formed and held large and successful annual fairs at this location. In 1867 this land was sold to Jasper Otis; the Society disbanded.
The first shade trees were set in our streets in 1844 by Josiah Letchworth. More were set by Dr. Pearl in 1846. Those trees about the district school were set in the spring of 1868. The large elm in the street south of the corner, which is native, was saved by Jude Spencer at the request of Slocum Howland, then a young man who stated that it was then about as large as his leg. Now it measures about 15 feet.
The Robin Hood Inn was built in 1860 by M. B. Kerr, who sold the place to George Merchant in 1867.
He conceived and executed the process of building flagstone sidewalks and others followed his example until a large part of the place was furnished with good walks.
Humphrey Howland came into this country in 1898 as a boy of sixteen years. He had had but three months in school, but had a great desire for knowledge, especially mathematics. Money was scarce, but he trapped and sold his furs and purchased books on mathematical subjects. These he diligently studied and became a surveyor. He got a position under the State Surveyor and was entrusted to measure public lands. He became an agent for several who had large land interests in Central New York. He soon became himself a large landowner and built a beautiful home in 18--? half way between Sherwood and Aurora. He married Sarah F. Field.
It will be remembered that Humphrey was a brother of Slocum, who was not given to pomp or display whereas Humphrey, while common enough with his neighbors, was given to being rather important.
I have the following story from a relative. Humphrey and his wife were in London at the time of some grand function at the King’s palace. He decided to go and hired a carriage to take them. When he reached

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