Cooperstown, Otsego, NY
Kelsey & Rawlings Biographies
By Holice and Debbie

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Roswell Kelsey

Roswell Kelsey, of Burlington, son of Solomon and Anna Kelsey, was born in Edmeston, Otsego Co., N. Y., July 13, 1797.

Solomon was a native of Washington Co., N. Y., and was born Sept. 10, 1767, and married Anna Brown, a native of the same county, by whom twelve children were born; two only are now living, but all lived to be men and women. Solomon was married before 1789, and removed to this county about that time, and settled in Edmeston, where he continued to reside until his death, which occurred in June, 1815, and his wife died some three weeks afterwards.

He was a farmer by occupation, and reared his children to industry and economy. Roswell was thus reared, and in 1820 he and his brother Silas purchased the old home, and continued to reside there till about 1840, when he sold out his interest to his brother, and removed on the farm in Burlington, where he has continued o live ever since. He now owns some 200 acres of good land near West Burlington.

He married Miss Rhoda Dye, a native of Madison Co., N. Y., May 27, 1820. By this union nine children have been born, namely: Sarah, Solomon, Rachel, Daniel, Jerusha, Mary, William, Celia, and Martha. Jerusha, Celia, and Martha are dead.

Mrs. Roswell Kelsey was connected with the Friends, and after more than fifty years of married life she was the first of this large family to pass away. She died May 29, 1871, and was buried in Burlington.

Mr. Kelsey has always been either a Whig or Republican in politics. Mr. Kelsey has always been a farmer, and today, while he is an old gentleman of more than eighty-one years, he has the satisfaction of knowing that he has done some good in his day and generation. His daughter, Mrs. Sarah Lines, is living with him, and has the care of him in his old age.

Sarah married Julius Lines, a native of Susquehanna Co., Pa., Nov. 17, 1840, by whom one daughter, Laura, was borne. Mr. Lines died Feb. 4, 1874, and Mrs. Lines came to live with her father the next pay.


John H. Rawlings is a native of Burbage, Leicestershire Co., England, being born April 5, 1833. His father, Isaac H., was a native of the same county; and there married Miss Mary Munson. The family came to American in the year 1834, and settled in the town of Butternuts, Otsego County. Three years later they moved on to the farm now owned by John Rawlings.

Isaac H. Rawlings was a man of great force of character, very industrious, and withal a model farmer. He did much to raise the standard of agriculture in his neighborhood, and converted his farm from an inferior to a high state of productiveness. He was a regular attendant of the Presbyterian church. He died Aug. 8, 1870, highly respected by all who knew him.

Mrs. Rawlings survived her husband only a few weeks; she died Nov. 7, 1870. She was a member of the Presbyterian church, and her death was deeply lamented by the community at large. The memory of these parents is sacredly cherished by their only son, John H.

John H. Rawlings is the only survivor of a family of four children, the others having died in infancy. He was one year old when his father emigrated to this country. His advantages for obtaining an education were such only as the common school afforded. Being the only child to reach maturity, he remained with his parents upon the farm, assuming control of the same many years prior to his father's decease.

Jan 1, 1856, he married Miss Ann Beale, the daughter of William and Hannah Beale, who were also natives of Leicestershire Co., England. She was born March 9, 1826,. When she was fifteen years of age her father, with his family, emigrated to the United States, and settled in the town of butternuts. She was the eldest of a family of nine children, eight of whom are now living. She has resided in the town of Butternuts ever since her arrival in this country; but her parents subsequently removed to Chenango Co., N. Y.

Mr. Rawlings is a very enterprising farmer, and is extensively engaged in the manufacture of butter and English cheese. His farm is considered one of the best in the town, being under a high state of cultivation. His buildings are commodious and convenient. A view of his beautiful home can be seen by referring to other pages in this work.

Mr. Rawlings has voted the Republican ticket since the organization of the party. He has contributed liberally of his means and time in the support of church and educational interests. He is a man of undoubted integrity, and highly esteemed by his townsmen. Mr. and Mrs. Rawlings are withal very hospitable, and are apparently enjoying the comforts of a pleasant rural home. (The History of Otsego, NY, Duane Hamilton Hurd, 1878)

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Transcribed by Holice B. Young

Copyright Debbie Axtman and Holice B. Young

December 24, 1999

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