Otsego Town, Otsego, NY
St. John & Taylor Biographies
By Holice and Debbie

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This gentleman was born in Norwalk, Conn., march 8, 1786, the eldest child of Aaron and Mary St. John. Aaron moved from Connecticut in 1807, and settled on the farm in the town of Otsego, which has since been held in the family He had one brother, Martin, who went to Florida,--the last heard of him. He had four sisters, Sarah, Cynthia, Mehetabel, and Maria, all of whom were married, raised families, and are deceased. The father died Jan. 26, 1815, the mother Aug. 31, 1811. Upon the death of his father Platt received 100 acres of the homestead farm, and afterwards bought the remaining 100 acres belonging to the heirs. He was married, Dec. 30, 1812, to Rebecca Russell, daughter of Jethro and Rebecca Russell, who were natives of New Bedford, Mass. They had children as follows:

Mary A., born March 5, 1815, married Feb. 5, ?, to Parden H. Russell, who was born in Rensselaer Co., N. Y., Sept. 18, 1814. They had two children who died in infancy. Mr. Russell died Jan. 30, 1875. Mrs. R. had been living since his death with her mother, Mrs. St. John. At her instance a representation of the old homestead, with portraits of her father and mother appear on another page of this work. Polly, born April 4, 1817, wife of Chestr Taylor. Juliet E., born April 15, 1816, wife of S. Wilson Cheney; Arthur W., born Oct. 24, 1871, and Maude May, born Feb. 21, 1873, are the children of the latter. Lillie M., born May 8, 1807, wife of George A. Bailey. Stephens, born June 29, 1821; died March 19, 1844. Juliet, born Sept. 25, 1824, wife of George Hines; died April 9, 1845. Louisa, born De. 28, 1826; died Nov. 20, 1868. Of the latter we quote the following from an obituary notice by her pastor, the Rev. H. V. Talbot:

She was a warm and zealous advocate of the doctrine of holiness, and her consistent walk, Christian conversation, devotion to Christ and his cause, bore unmistakable evidence that she enjoyed it. When death came it found her ready. She quietly folded he hands, exclaiming, "All is light before me!" and peacefully fell asleep in Jesus.

 Mr. St. John was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church of Fly Creek from its organization. We cannot better close this record of his life than by quoting from an obituary notice furnished the Northern Christian Advocate by his pastor, the Rev. David L. Pendall:

Brother St. John was one of the oldest members of the Methodist Episcopal church of Fly Creek, and one of its firmest friends The last love feat he enjoyed with us, which was a few weeks previous to his death, he gave in a fervent, melting testimony for the efforts of the love of God in his soul, and we thought, which listening to it with delight, that if it was the last testimony we should ever hear from him, it would be a blessed legacy to leave to his family, the church, and the world. It was the last. Ere he was again permitted to tell of the power of Jesus to save, in a public capacity, he was summoned to the paradise of God . . . .He lived a Christian, died a Christian and doubtless is a sharer in the Christian's blessed record.

The mother is still living, at the advanced age of eighty-four, surrounded with loving attentions of her children, grand and great-grandchildren.


Thomas Taylor, grandfather of the subject of this sketch, moved at an early day from Bennington, Vt., and settled with his family in that portion of the town of Otsego which has been known as "Taylortown." He paid one thousand dollars for one thousand acres of land, five hundred of which was situated in a body in the town of Otsego. He has three sons and three daughters, as follows: Erastus, Thomas, and Chester; Cynthia, Lucy, and Irene. His children all were married and settled on different portions of the five-hundred-acre tract. Thomas Taylor, father of Francis, married Margaret McCulloch. Besides the subject of this sketch, their children were Cynthia, Nancy, Erastus, and Mary Lucy. Cynthia and Erastus are deceased.

Francis Taylor was bon Nov. 15, 1811, and has always lived on the place of his birth, having inherited the farm from his father. He was married April 11, 1841, to Eliza Davidson, daughter of Asa B. and Armelia Davidson, formerly residents of the town of Otsego. Mrs. T. was born Nov. 19, 1811.

Richard Davidson, a farmer living in the same neighborhood, is a brother. Mr. and Mrs. Taylor have no children. Mr. Taylor has been a life-long farmer, and everything about his home indicates thoroughness and thrift. A representative of it, together with portraits of Mr. and Mrs. Taylor, appears on another page of this work.

*The History of Otsego, NY, by Duane Hamilton Hurd, 1878

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 Transcribed by Holice B. Young


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December 23, 1999

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