A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

History: Our Matawan Portfolio (1891)

Page 3 of the 25 Jul 1891 edition of The Matawan Journal had a section called Our Matawan Portfolio, in which some local news items were reported. Below are items from the paper, followed by my research notes.
  1. Charles H Schanck sent six baskets of peaches to New York last Wednesday.
  2. Dr Jackson has a Kensington cart that attracts much attention and is admired by all.
  3. Remember the Oriental lecture and entertainment in the Baptist Church this Friday evening.
  4. Benjamin Cooper, of Freneau, had a stroke of apoplexy on Monday and is lying in a critical condition.
  5. The net receipts of the Fourth of July Picnic under the auspices of the St Joseph's R C Church were over $725.
  6. Almost forty young people from this place attended the harvest home at Old Tennent Church Wednesday evening.
  7. Mrs E Sylvester, of Perth Amboy, has removed to Matawan and is occupying a house on Broad street owned by E I Brown.
  8. Elwood Hopkins gathered three bushels of swamp huckleberries in two days this week. Where he was they were plentiful.
  9. The pile driver is at work on the bridge crossing the creek above the railroad trestle. Henry Holland is the engineer in charge.
  10. The August number of Butterick's Delineator is out. As usual, it contains just what the ladies need in preparing their summer costumes.
  11. J W Cooper and family, of New York, have rented the James Cottrell house in the upper part of the town and are now occupying it.
  12. A new fence has been built around the property of C H Wardell in the rear of Washington Hall. W A Fountain, Jr furnished the labor.
  13. We acknowledge the receipt of a map from Amzi T Dodd, of Long Branch, showing the different points reached by way of the Central R R of New Jersey. Please except (sic) thanks for same.
  14. Dr C Knecht has removed his heater from his house and W A Fountain has contracted to put in a Furman steam heater, which is expected to give much better results than the one just removed.
  15. On Monday night as Garret Hendrickson was leaning back in a chair on the stoop of Conover's restaurant, his weight proved too much for one of the large glass windows and the top of the chair went through it.
  16. The meeting of the Commissioners announced for Saturday evening last was attended by only three members, one less than a quorum. It was decided to have the next meeting on Saturday, July 25, at the usual hour and place.
  17. Mr E H Dominick has a copy of The Lord's Prayer printed in fifty-three different languages. It was compiled by F A Strale of New York in 1811 and has been in the possession of Mr Dominick since that time. It is certainly a curiosity.
  18. The evangelist, Lavinia A Browne, was married on Monday at Little Silver to Mr Joseph Anderson of Atlantic Highlands. Mrs Browne-Anderson will continue her evangelistic work while her husband is in college preparing himself for the ministry.
  19. A number of farmers in this vicinity were noticed going to the seashore on Saturday morning last with empty tubs and rakes. Upon their return in the evening their tubs were filled with hard clams, and in addition to having a day's recreation they were amply remunerated for their long drive.
  20. Rev C I Percy and Mr P V Hyer engaged in a croquet game on Monday evening on Dr Knecht's grounds. Chinese lanterns made light for the occasion and the grounds presented a picturesque appearance. The game was hotly contested and resulted in a draw, after more than an hour's play.
  21. The Midway Shooting Club of this place will meet the Perth Amboy Gun Club on the latter's ground on Saturday and shoot a friendly team match. The contest will begin at 1 pm and will be at live birds. The opposing teams will consist of at least eight and possibly ten men and the Midways hope to carry off the honors.
  22. Potatoes, tomatoes, apples, corn, peppers, cabbage and other early produce have been going to the market in large quantities this week. The first of the week tomatoes brought $3.50 a crate, but on Thursday they were quoted at $1.59@$3. Potatoes range from $1.75@$2, and apples from 75c@$1.50, Nyacks bringing $2.50.
  23. The present week has been a joyous one for the country people. Different localities have made up parties and visited the shores of Raritan Bay for a pleasant time in bathing, boating, etc. On Thursday several load of children from the neighborhood of Ticetown passed through town bent on a day's outing at Cliffwood.
  24. If any of our readers have last week's copy of The Journal at hand and can spare it they will confer a favor by sending it to this office.  We have a call for several copies which are wanted to send to friends of Miss Ida Faye. The demand last week was an unusually large one and our edition was exhausted before all our friends were supplied.
  25. Assessor Bedle has about finished  his visits to taxpayers. Only a few property-owners have not handed in their schedule and in case this is not done soon the assessment will be made and if deductions should afterward be claimed the application will have to be made to the State Board of Assessors, which will probably meet in this county some time next month.
  26. William P Malcolmson, who was said to have been committed to the Reform School July 16 by Judge Conover, is still at liberty. The Judge was not satisfied that the Reform School was the proper place for a boy of his age and the matter was laid over for a week. On Thursday the hearing was again laid over in order that the father of the boy could be present at the proceedings.
  27. Charles Gehlhaus has lost two cows this week. The first one died Sunday morning and the other Tuesday afternoon. It is supposed that there must have been something wrong in the food given them, as both died in the same manner. Both cows were buried near by in Straub's barnyard. Last week Mr Gehlhaus also lost a horse, and his cup of  bad luck seems to be running over.
  28. Mr Antisell has sold his first piano, manufactured in Matawan, to the Baptist Sunday school of this place. The instrument is an upright in style and finished in the best manner known to the trade. Its tone is superior to any we have heard and we have no doubt as soon as its merits become known in the East the demand for the Antisell piano will be greater than the anticipation of the manufacturers.
  29. Nothing of importance was done at the special meeting of the Township Committee on Saturday evening last. After a half hour's talk it was decided to adjourn until Wednesday and go over the new road and what was still required to be done. The plans for the new bridge as prepared by the county will be used by the Township in building its part of the bridge, thus making the entire bridge uniform in material used and mode of construction.
  30. Sebastian Miller, of New York, a man noted as an athlete, wrestler, and heavy lifter, visited the Aberdeen Inn on Tuesday, in company with Mr Wickert, of Keyport. While there he showed his strength by breaking a cobblestone into pieces with his hand doubled up. In appearance he is a rather short man but powerfully built. It is said that he will give an Exhibition in the Armory, Keyport, in about a fortnight, which will be under the auspices of the athletic club of that place.
  31. We are informed that Ruliff Quackenbush will soon put on stages between Keyport and the railroad station in opposition to the horse railroad company. He has been thinking over the project for some time and the one thing in the past that has deterred him from doing it before was that he believed the Matawan patrons of the horse railroad would be very apt to continue with the railroad. He now, however, has reached the conclusion that the people riding from this section will bestow their patronage on him and for that reason is going to give it a trial. 
  32. As J L M Dominick was making a delivery at the piano factory on Wednesday he left his horse standing along the public road. The animal was attracted by some foliage on the bushes and crossed the road to get it. Just at this point there is a five foot ditch and as he was about to step into it he was stopped by Dr Knecht, who was passing at that instant. It was fortunate for Jerry that that the doctor came along as he did, as the horse would have fared badly in another minute, and his loss would have been a severe one.

1. - There was a Charles Schanck, born about 1836, who was enumerated in Matawan in the 1860 Federal Census. He was living with Mary A Cook and her daughter Gertrude, and what appears to have been Charles's mother, Hager Schanck, born about 1801.
   - There was a Charles Schenck, born about 1835, enumerated in Marlboro in 1870 as a farm laborer. He had a wife Elizabeth and a 15 yr old son Charles.
    - There was a Charles Schanck, born about 1840, enumerated in Marlboro in 1880 as a farm laborer in the household of Vanderbilt Whitlock. He had a wife Elizabeth.
    - John V P Schanck was Schanck the Grocer (wholesale and retail), of Matawan, who advertised in The Matawan Journal in the 1880s and early 1890s. He had a son Charles W Schanck born about 1867.
2. - There was a Andrew J Jackson, born Dec 1842 in New York, physician, living on Main Street in Matawan in the 1900 Federal Census. A Kensington cart was likely an electric car manufactured by the Kensington Automobile Company, of Buffalo, NY, which made cars from 1899 to 1904.
3. - Oriental lectures in the Baptist church would likely have been Sunday school classes teaching about the Holy Lands or mission work in the Far East. There was an Oriental Lectures Bureau selling Sunday school materials on West 23rd Street in New York in 1887. And there was an Oriental Lectures Bureau at Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, undated.
4. - Benjamin P Cooper, carpenter, was born about 1817 in New Jersey. He lived in Raritan (Keyport)  and then in Matawan until his death.
8. - Elwood Hopkins, born Dec 1851, appeared in the 1900 Federal Census living with his widowed mother, Lucy Hopkins, born Mar 1828. Also in the household was Elwood's sister, Dora Hopkins, born Dec 1855. No one in the household was working in 1900.
9. - Henry Holland, born Nov 1853, stationary engineer, appeared in the 1900 Federal Census in Matawan. He listed himself as married sixteen years, but there was no wife, only a son, Robert.
10 - I found an online copy of the May 1891 edition of Butterick's The Delineator .
11. - There was a farmer named James H Cottrell, born about 1830, with wife Patricia Ann, living in Marlboro in the 1860 and 1880 Federal Censuses.
12. - Charles H Wardell, bank cashier, born about 1838, appeared in the 1880 and 1900 censuses in Matawan along with his wife, Mary. They were living with his mother-in-law, Charlotte Simpson, in 1880.
12. and 14. - William A Fountain, born Apr 1839, ran a hardware store in Matawan.
13. - Amzi Dodd, born about 1867, was the son and namesake of the owner of Dodd's Express, a baggage handling service in the New York City area. He was attending college and living with his father in New York City in the 1880 Federal Census. The 1900 Federal Census showed him living in Ocean, NJ, where he was enumerated as the superintendent of Dodd's Express. There are a number of letters to the editor and even a dedicated article (Express Nuisance) in The New York Times complaining bitterly about the New York Transfer Company, of which Dodd's Express was part. The company would lose or steal from people's baggage. There was an article in The Hartford Weekly Times claiming that one of the company's drivers conspired with thieves to steal from postal bags between the port and the post office. A company cashier committed suicide by taking morphine, again as reported by The NY Times.
14. - Cyrus Knecht was a physician in Matawan in the 1900 Federal Census. He was born in Sep 1851 in Pennsylvania. He was a physician in Easton, PA in the 1880 Federal Census. He was the doctor who treated a knife wound after a pool room fight on Main Street in 1929. He died in 1934 and was buried at Green Grove Cemetery in Keyport. (See 12 above re W A Fountain.)
15. - Garret Hendrickson, born about 1838 in NJ, was son of John S and Eleanor Hendrickson. Garret lived with his father, a farmer in Raritan Township, in the 1850 Federal Census. He was a clerk in a mill living in the household of David Craig, a merchant in Matawan, in the 1860 Federal Census. He was married and back in his father's household, a $26,000 farm in Holmdel that used the Matawan post office, in the 1870 Federal Census. And he was a store clerk living with his father-in-law, Benjamin E Griggs, the tax assessor in Matawan, in the 1880 Federal Census.
15. The 2 Aug 1890 edition of The Matawan Journal announced the Saturday 27 July 1890 opening of W H Conover's restaurant and dining rooms adjoining the Journal's offices. William H Conover, born about 1837 in NJ, was enumerated in Matawan in the 1880 Federal Census as a farmer. He had a wife and three daughters living with him at the time.
17. - Edward H Dominick, born about 1811 in New York, was a watch repairman when he was enumerated in Matawan in the 1880 Federal Census. Also in his household was his 45 year old housekeeper (Alice Compton) and his 7 month old son (Amsey Dominick).
17. - Frederick A Strale, born about 1795 in Stockholm, Sweden, paper maker, 5' 10" tall, hazel eyes, brown eyes, dark hair, enlisted in the 5th Infantry Regiment (US Army), Company D, on 17 March 1820. He became an artificer in light artillery. (The 5th Infantry notably built a fort at the mouth of the Minnesota River during this time, laying the groundwork for the construction of Minneapolis-St Paul.) He graduated Uppsala University in 1809, and then graduated Andover Theological Seminary, Andover, Massachusetts in 1827. He was ordained an evangelical Presbyterian minister on 16 September 1829 at New Lebanon, NY. (This town was home to the New Lebanon Conference, where Presbyterian leaders challenged the preaching methods of Charles Finney at the peak of the Second Great Awakening.) Strale, late of Chenango, Broome County, NY, had died recently when a public notice to creditors was placed in The Broome Republican at Binghamton, NY on 11 Oct 1832. I suspect the Lord's Prayer was assembled by Rev Strale but not in 1811, which coincidentally was Edward Dominick's approximate year of birth. Strale was likely still in Stockholm in 1811.
20. - Rev C. L. Percy preached at the First Baptist Church in Matawan from January 1890 to October 1894, according to a 1904 history of Baptists in the area. He conducted a wedding in Matawan on 21 Feb 1894, according to the 28 Feb 1894 edition of The Red Bank Register. He accepted a call to a Baptist church in Deposit, NY, starting his new charge on 1 November 1894, according to Christian Work, vol 54, published in 1894.
20. - Peter V Hyer, born about 1839, lived in Holmdel with his wife Julia in the 1860 Federal Census and used the Matawan Post Office. He had a $15,000 farm in Holmdel in the 1870 Federal Census. And he was a farmer in Matawan in the 1880 Federal Census.
21. - The Midway Shooting Club's founding was announced in the 2 Oct 1875 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 2 col 4). "A company of gentlemen from Matawan and vicinity, who are fond of the sport connected to the gun," rented the hall above the stores in the Rose Building across the street from the Episcopal church on Main Street, Matawan, for their new club.
22. - The Nyack pippin or Champlain apple was an obscure form of Sweet Bough dessert apple grown in New Jersey and Delaware in the mid to late 19th and early 20th centuries. It was thought to have originated in Vermont or New York. Reference the Bulletin of the US Bureau of the Plant Industry, 1907; The Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the New Jersey Horticultural Society, 1876; and The Western Fruit Book, by Franklin Reuben Elliott, 1859, reprinted.
24. - Ida Faye, born about 1857, was one of three single adult daughters of the widow Jane Faye, born about 1820. They were all living together in their mother's Matawan household in the 1880 Federal Census. The newspaper she wanted extra copies of, the 18 Jul 1891 edition of The Matawan Journal, included a story on pg 2 col 3 about a farewell reception held at the Baptist church for Ida Faye, MD, who would be departing in August for missionary work in India.
27. - Charles Gehlhaus, born about 1842 in Germany, was a baker enumerated in Matawan in the 1880 Federal Census, along with wife Caroline and eight children. His son Otto was boarding in Keansburg as a real estate salesman in the 1930 Federal Census. He reported that his father was born in Hamburg, Germany and his mother in Prague, Czechoslovakia.
28. - The T M Antisell Piano Company of Matawan manufactured the patent steel wrest plank tuning device and high grade pianos recognized with awards in New Orleans and Melbourne, according to an 1891 advertisement in the Music Trade Review. It employed 20 persons in Matawan in 1909, according to the Industrial Directory of New Jersey, 1909. The Red Bank Register, 8 May 1901, reported that Matawan residents had invested $2,000 towards the establishment of a foundry, due to open 1 June 1901, called the Matawan Steel and Iron Company. The foundry would be located in the old Antisell piano factory.
30. -  An article at Muscles of Iron says Sebastian Miller was born in January 1862 and came to the US in 1887.
- Wrestling Observer contains research on events involving Sebastian Miller mentioned in issues of The Brooklyn Eagle between 1888 and 1902.
- The 1910 Federal Census shows Sebastian Miller, born about 1862 in Germany, living at 122 4th Street in Manhattan. Terese Miller, born about 1858 in Germany, was his second wife, this being their second year of marriage. Sebastian was a saloon proprietor. He claimed to have immigrated to the US in 1887 and that he was a naturalized citizen.
- The 1920 Federal Census shows Sebastian Miller, born about 1862 in Germany, living at 3019 North Clark Street in Chicago. His wife Theresa and nephew Joseph Miller were living in the household. Sebastian was a tailor. Sebastian claimed to have immigrated to the US in 1886 and that he was naturalized in 1895.   
- A Sebastian Miller, born about 1862 in Germany, came to America in steerage as a mason in December 1881 aboard the SS Switzerland, which sailed from Antwerp, Belgium to New York City.
- A Sebastian Miller, born about 1862 in Germany, last residence Munich, came to America in 2nd cabin as a machinist in December 1892 destined for New York aboard the S S Spaarndam, which he boarded at Rotterdam to New York City.
31. - Ruliff Quackenbush, born about 1816 in New Jersey, was enumerated in Matawan in the 1880 Federal Census. He was a laborer. His wife was Cecelia, also born in 1816 in NJ.
32. - Jared M Dominick, born about 1851 in New York, was enumerated in Matawan in the 1880 Federal Census. He was an expressman. His wife was Sarah and his infant daughter was named Mary.


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