Albany, New York’s Dutch Church started a “Poor Fund,” probably shortly after the arrival of Dominie Johannes Megapolensis (1603–1670) in 1642. Disbursements were being made from the fund by 1647. Albany’s Patroon, Dutch merchants and others contributed to the collections of the church and the church in turn was made contributions to support the community’s impoverished residents. [Read more…] about Caring for Albany’s Poor: Some History
William O. Stillman was born on September 9th, 1856 in Normansville, now known as Elsmere in the town of the Bethlehem, Albany County, NY. His parents were Rev. Stephen Lewis Stillman and Lucretia (Miller) Stillman.
Rev. Stephen Lewis Stillman was a Methodist minister at the First Methodist Episcopal Church in Adamsville (now Delmar) and a descendant of a family that had emigrated from London, England. Lucretia (Miller) Stillman was of Dutch descent. Rev. Stephen suddenly died in 1869, when William was 12 years old. After his father’s death, William and his mother moved to Albany. [Read more…] about William O. Stillman: Leader of Humane Societies, Friend of Animals & Children
John Swinburne was born May 30, 1820 in Denmark, Lewis County, New York. He attended school in the communities of Lowville and Denmark, and in Fairfield, Herkimer County, all in New York. He was an excellent student and upon completion of his studies, he took a job as a teacher.
In 1841, at the age of 21, he began the study of medicine and in 1843 entered Albany Medical College where he was a student under the tutelage of Dr. James H. Armsby, a founder of the college. He eventually went to work for Dr. Armsby and upon his graduation in 1846, started his own practice. [Read more…] about Dr. John Swinburne’s Life in Crime, War & Politics
Very little is documented about medicine in Schenectady County during the 19th century. There are few hospital records to review; Ellis Hospital was not founded until 1885; and the Schenectady County Medical Society did not meet between 1843 and 1869.
We can however, glean some insight into this period from old newspapers, a wonderful book on the 134th NY Volunteer Infantry, minutes of the Schenectady Common Council, and old stories from the Efner Center and the Schenectady County Historical Society library. [Read more…] about Medical Practice in 19th Century Schenectady
Ira Harris was born at Charleston, Montgomery County, NY on May 31st, 1802 to Fredrick Waterman Harris and Lucy Hamilton. When he was six years old, his family moved to Preble, NY where his father became one of the largest landowners in Cortland County.
Harris attended Homer Academy and graduated from Union College in 1824. He studied law for one year in Homer, New York and then moved to Albany where he assisted one of that city’s most highly regarded jurists, Ambrose Spencer. [Read more…] about Albany’s Ira Harris: From Rights Advocate to Lincoln’s Assassination