Thursday, June 1, 2017

1 June 1875: Truman Potter's Farm, Eden, NY

Mary Jane Valentine Potter, wife of Truman Potter
Photo from jacki Neitzke's collection

In 1875, while grandfather George Potter was being a baby down on his father David "Max" Potter's farm near French Creek, NY, David's father, mother and brothers were living about 70 miles north in Eden, Erie County, NY.

The New York agricultural census of 1875 took place on 1 June in both French Creek and Erie.  The tabulation of David Potter's farm was shown in the 10 April blog post commemorating George's 60th birthday.

Here, for comparison if nothing else, are the data for George's grandfather Truman Potter's farm in Eden NY.

The location of the farm is known from this 1866 atlas of Eden County.  Truman Potter's house is underlined in orange (at the intersection of today's Eden-Evans Center Road and Hemlock Road). The Valentine property underlined in blue is by 1875 in the charge of Truman's brother-in-law George C. Valentine, the elderly George Claghorn Valentine (the one-time whaler) having moved in with a daughter Harriet Valentine Hale and her family a bit west in Evans, NY.

credit:, fair use claimed on this tiny excerpt of the map for genealogical purposes.
The cemetery at the right edge of the photo is where this generation ended up, for the most part.
In 1875, Truman Potter (53) still has sons George (23), Millard (17), Franklin (19), and Clinton (9) at home, so he has much more in the way of helpers than David "Max" (25) and Mary (19) with their babies and one hired man on his farm.
Truman Potter's farm was about three times as large as David's at 75 acres, of which 60 were "improved" and 10 in "wood and timber" with 5 "unimproved".  The value of the farm was $3750, with buildings $400 and stock $469 with $100 in tools and implements.  He had had gross sales of $300 in 1874 (about $6500 in current dollars, to the extent such comparisons are meaningful, and a total value for the farm and contents approaching $80,000 in current dollars).

The Truman Potter family had powed 10 acres in 1874 and 12 in 1875, from which they had harvestd 46 bushels of winter wheat, 104 bushels of oats, 140 bushels of potatoes.  There were 60 apple trees, yielding 110 bushels of fruit, some of which turned into 4 barrels of cider (presumably the hard kind).

There were six milk cows in 1874 and seven in 1875 with 2 heifer calves in 1874 but none in 1875.  Milk was sent to the factory in unspecified units of 6 in 1874 and 7 in 1875. They produced 150 pounds of butter, in which they were much outdone by David's farm with 200 pounds from only two cows.

The cows were supported on 22 acres of pasture (30 in 1874) and 16 acres of meadow (14 in 1874) with 25 tons of hay gotten in during 1874.

The State of New York did not ask about chickens, pigs or other small animals, or about the production from home gardening, or about the horses which were surely needed to work the land.

Google Maps view of the site of Truman Potter's farm, looking in from the intersection of the two fronting roads.
Hemlock Road is the one running into the center distance.  There is an old house beyond the trees, but no nearly old enough to have housed these ancestors.

Confused yet?...George Henry Potter's immediate ancestors. tree.

Truman Potter, his children and their spouses:

-Truman POTTER (31)             b. 21 May 1822                   d.  7 Sep 1881
 s-Mary Jane VALENTINE (30)     b.  1 Jul 1831   m.  2 Jan 1848  d. 26 Aug 1904
  |-Maria M POTTER (48)         b.  8 Dec 1848                   d.        1925
  | s-Albert J. READ (355)      b.    Dec 1847   m.        1875  d.        1920
  |-David Henry POTTER (21)     b. 30 Mar 1850                   d.  2 Apr 1912
  | s-Mary M  HASBROUCK (20)    b.  9 May 1855   m. 25 Dec 1871  d. 28 Apr 1912
  |-George H POTTER (49)        b.    Feb 1852                   d.        1928
  | s-Emily M KESTER (357)      b.    May 1858   m.        1878  d.        1935
  |-Emma Jane POTTER (47)       b. 22 Feb 1854                   d. 22 Sep 1887
  | s-Burwell E HAWKINS (366)   b. 11 Jul 1849   m.        1889  d.  7 Nov 1934
  |-Franklin POTTER (51)        b.    Feb 1856                   d.        1916
  | s-Ellen PHILLIPPI (360)     b.    Jul 1858   m.        1878  d.        1942
  |-Millard POTTER (50)         b.        1858                   d.        1882
  |-Clinton POTTER (52)         b.  5 Oct 1865                   d. 27 Jun 1922
  | s-Eliza PHILLIPPI (365)     b.    Mar 1863   m.        1882  d.  8 Mar 1921

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