On the low foot-hills of the sunny southern slope of the most easterly of the five great mountain ranges of the Adirondack Wilderness, in the pride of her gorgeous palatial beauty, sits the village of Saratoga Springs, - of the world's most famous watering-places the peerless queen.

A spur of the old Canadian Laurentian mountains crosses the St. Lawrence river, as the reader will remember, at the Thousand islands, and spreading easterly and southerly over the whole of the great wilderness, rises into lofty mountain-peaks in the interior and slopes gradually down to the great water-courses on every side. In the depth of the wilderness this spur of the Laurentides separates into five great chains, all of which run down its southern slope. The most easterly of the chains is the Palmertown range. This range begins on Lake Champlain near Ticonderoga, and running along both sides of Lake George, crosses the Hudson river above Glen's falls. After crossing the Hudson, this chain of mountains runs down along the border of the towns of Corinth and Moreau, through Wilton and Greenfield, and ends under North Broadway in Saratoga Springs. Beyond the Hudson the highest peak of the Palmertown range is old French Mountain, which overlooks the head of Lake George, so full of historic memories. On this side the Hudson the highest peak is Mount MacGreggor, which overlooks the site of the old legendary Indian village called Palmertown, from which the great mountain chain derives its name.

Thus this village of Saratoga Springs, while she sips her mineral waters in the full blaze of fashion's highest splendor, sits at the very foot of the old Laurentian Adirondacks and breathes to fullness the purest and most invigorating air of the mountains.

Along in the valley which runs through the village the hard Laurentian rocks terminate and the softer rocks of the Trenton limestones and Hudson river slates begin. In the geologic fault or fissure which here occurs between these two systems of rocks, the mineral springs of Saratoga bubble from the earth's bosom elaborated by the cunning hand of nature.



There may have been and it is highly probable there were some white men who saw the mineral springs of Saratoga before Sir William Johnson went there in the summer of 1767. Sir William himself, in a letter quoted in "Moese's Gazetteer," intimates that an Indian chief discovered these springs to a sick French officer in their early wars with the English. Again, it is more than probable that some of the early settlers of Wilton, who were there about 1765, and those near the lake about 1764, being only half a dozen miles away from these springs, often went to these even before Sir William's visit; but whether they did or not we have no account. It may therefore of a truth be said that of the long line of distinguished men and women and of the vast concourse of summer visitors that for a hundred years have been pressing with eager feet toward these springs to taste their healing waters, Sir William Johnson led the way.

Sir William at the time of his celebrated visit with the Indians to the High Rock spring, of Saratoga, in the month of August, 1767, was living in the height of his baronial power with the Indian princess, Molly Brandt, as his wife and their eight dusky children in his manor house at Mount Johnson, near the Mohawk country. He was then His Britannic Majesty's superintendent-general of Indian affairs in North America, colonel of the Six Nations, and a major-general in the British service.

Thirty-five years before this, he had come over from Ireland a poor young man, and settled in the Mohawk valley, then a wilderness, to take care of a large tract of land that was located there and owned by his uncle, Sir Peter Warren. Sir Peter Warren was an admiral of the British navy, who, while a commodore, distinguished himself by the capture of Louisburgh from the French in 1745. Sir Peter married a daughter of Etienne De Lancey, of New York, and with her received as a dowry this large tract of land in the Mohawk valley. It was situated in the eastern angle between the Mohawk river and the Schoharie creek.

Sir William Johnson upon his first taking up his residence in the Mohawk valley became a fur-trader with the Indians, and kept for many years a country store for the accommodation of the scattered settlers of the region. Rising by degrees, through dint of industry and fair dealing, and by the faithful performance of the public trusts imposed upon him, he had become the proprietor of immense landed estates, the acknowledged lord of a princely manor, and high in the confidence of his sovereign. His victory over the French and Indians, under Baron Dieskau, at Lake George, in 1755, had won for him his title of nobility. His wonderful influence, the most remarkable on record, over the Indian tribes, had given him an importance in the affairs of state second to no American then living. He was surrounded by a numerous tenantry and by followers that were loyal to him and his family even unto death.

Sir William married in the more humble days of his early life a poor, modest, gentle-hearted German girl, whom he found living with her parents in the Mohawk valley, whose maiden name was Catherine Weisenberg. She died young, leaving three children, - a son, Sir John Johnson, and two daughters, who married respectively Colonel Claus and Colonel Guy Johnson.

Sir William's Indian wife was Molly Brandt, a sister of the celebrated Mohawk war-chief Ta-en-da-ne-ga, or Joseph Brandt, who was afterwards so long the terror of the border. After the death of his first wife he became enamored of Molly at a general muster of the Mohawk Valley militia held at or near Johnstown. Among the spectators at the training was a beautiful Indian maiden. One of the mounted officers, in sport, dared the maiden to ride on the bare back of his horse behind his saddle, three times around the parade-ground, little thinking she would accept the challenge. Bounding from the ground, like a deer, upon his horse behind him, she encircled his waist with her arms, and over the ground they flew like the wind, her red mantle and luxuriant raven tresses streaming behind her, her beautiful face lighted up with the pleasurable excitement of the novel adventure.

Sir William was an admiring witness of the scene, and was smitten with the charms of the dusky forest maiden. He inquired her name, and was told that she was the Indian princess, Molly Brandt. He sought her at once, and made her his Indian bride. He married her after the true Indian style, by them considered binding, but never acknowledged her as his lawful wife. In his will he remembered her, calling her his "housekeeper, Molly Brandt," and left a large tract of land to his children by her, which lay in Herkimer county, between the East and West Canada creeks, and was long known to the early settlers as the Royal Grants.

In the height of his power Sir William Johnson, at his seat near the Mohawk, on the border of a howling wilderness that stretched away to the Pacific, dispensed a right royal hospitality. Many a scion of the English nobility sat at his generous board, or, like the Lady Susan O'Brien, wandered through the woods with Sir William's accomplished Indian wife, in search of the strange wild flowers of the New World. The Lady Susan passed considerable time at Johnson Hall. She was a niece of the first Lord Holland, and the sister of Lady Harriet Ackland, who, as well as the Baroness Riedesel, the wife of the Hessian general, accompanied her husband, under General Burgoyne, to the battle-field of Saratoga.

In the summer Sir William spent much of his time at the Fish house, his hunting lodge, on the Sacondaga river, and at the cottage on Summer-House Point, on the great Vlaie, which is one of the mountain meadows of the wilderness

Once every year the sachems of the Six Nations renewed their council-fire at the Manor house, to talk with Sir William, the agent of their white father who lived across the big water. On such occasions Sir William was himself painted and plumed and dressed like an Indian chief.

Such was Sir William Johnson at the time of his first visit to the High Rock spring in the month of August, 1767, such was he at the formation of Tryon county, in 1772, and such was he two years later at the time of his death, in 1774. He seems to have been mercifully taken away just before the slumbering fires of the Revolution were to burst forth, which were so soon destined to stain the fair valley of his home with blood, - to send his family and followers fugitives across the Canadian border.

At the time of his visit to the springs, Sir William was escorted by his Mohawk braves. His old wound received at the battle of Lake George had never quite healed, and besides this he was afflicted with the gout, so he could scarcely walk. The Indians told him of their famous "medicine spring" in the depths of their old hunting-ground, Kay-ad-ros-se-ra, and he determined to go. Embarking at his manor house at Mount Johnson, on the bank of the Mohawk, he proceeded down the river in canoes to Schenectady, and landing, took a new road lately cut to the McDonalds, who had settled near what is now known as Ballston lake, but then called by the Indians Sha-nen-da-ho-wa, in 1763. At the McDonalds, Sir William tarried through the night, and the next day was carried over a rough road cut for the purpose to the High Rock spring. There in the deepest solitude of nature bubbled up the wonderful "medicine waters," then almost if not quite unknown to all, save the wild beasts and the red men of the forest.

Sir William remained at the spring several days, and during his stay was so much benefited by the waters that he was quite able to walk over the rugged trail that led to his home on his return. The fame of this cure performed upon so distinguished a person as Sir William Johnson, at once brought these springs into notice.



The next man of distinction of whose early visit to the High Rock spring we have any account was General Philip Schuyler. In the year 1783 General Schuyler cut a road from his country-seat, at the mouth of Fish creek, in old Saratoga, now Schuylerville, to the High Rock spring. This old road ran much of the way to the north of the present one, thereby avoiding the low ground of Bear swamp. The first summer General Schuyler brought his tent and encamped near the High Rock spring for several weeks. The next year he came with his family, and put up a small frame house of rough boards on the bluff, a little to the south of the High Rock, on what is now Front street. This house consisted of two rooms, and was occupied by the general, his family and friends, as a summer-house at the springs every season up to the time of the general's death.



In the year 1783, while General Washington was waiting at Newburgh for the definitive treaty of peace, he concluded to while away a part of the time by a trip to the northern part of the State. Accordingly, accompanied by Governor Clinton, General Hamilton, and others, he proceeded by water to Albany. From thence the party on horseback went up the river, and visited the scene of the late battle at Bemus Heights, and the spot of Burgoyne's surrender, on the heights of old Saratoga. They continued on to Lake George, passed down the lake in boats, which had been provided for them, and examined the fortifications of Ticonderoga and Crown Point. On their return they came by the way of the High Rock spring, escorted by General Schuyler, who had cut his road to the High Rock and pitched his tent there the same season.

General Washington returned by way of the trail which led to the springs at Ballston Spa. At the springs of Ballston Spa, when General Washington was there in 1783, there was no human habitation, although Ballston township had been settled thirteen years before, a mile or two away. It was not till the year 1787 that Benajah Douglas, the pioneer of Ballston Spa, built the first rude log tavern there, and opened it for guests, just sixteen years after Dirck Schouten built the first log cabin near the High Rock in Saratoga. Yet, by the year 1794, Douglas and Low had built their large frame hotels at Ballston Spa, six years in advance of Gideon Putnam's enterprise of founding the Grand Union, at Saratoga. Those six years the start came near costing Saratoga its now proud position as the world's greatest watering-place


General Washington was so struck with the value of the mineral springs of Saratoga, that soon after peace was declared he made the attempt to purchase the land near them. In his published correspondence there is a letter relating to this subject.

But the Waltons and the Livingstons had already perfected their title to the land at Saratoga, and Washington's scheme failed.

A similar scheme was entered into by Joseph Bonaparte, brother of the great Napoleon, and ex-king of Naples and of Spain, about the year 1824. Joseph was then an exile, and was desirous of founding a country-seat in America. He first chose for its site Saratoga Springs, but being unable to purchase such lands as he wanted there, he went to Point Breeze, near Bordentown, New Jersey. Joseph, however, often visited Saratoga Springs, accompanied by a numerous retinue of the friends of his better days. On such occasions he always traveled in great state, and his journeyings in his coach and six from Bordentown to Saratoga were not unlike the journeys from Fontainebleau to Blois by the French kings of the old régime.



The first white man who built a habitation at Saratoga Springs and attempted a settlement there was Dirck Schouten. He had been living on the bank of the Hudson a little above Waterford, and his object in becoming a temporary resident at the wilderness was to open a trade with the Indians who congregated there every summer in great numbers. So in the year 1771 this pioneer settler, Dirck Schouten, came to the springs to chop his small clearing, to plant a few potatoes, and build his humble cabin on the bluff a little west of the High Rock spring.

Schouten's route to the springs was from the Hudson to the east side of Saratoga lake, thence across the lake in a bark canoe to the mouth of the Kay-ad-ros-se-ra river; thence up the river two miles to an Indian trail that led to the Springs. The way to the springs is much plainer nowadays than it was a hundred and seven years ago.

The only white person whose name we know who visited the High Rock spring while Schouten was there was William Bousman. Bousman was then a boy twelve years old, whose Father the same year had settled near the south end of Saratoga lake. This lad came with Schouten to help him build his cabin, to make a little clearing, and to plant a small patch of potatoes.

Schouten remained there a part of the time, till the summer of 1773, when he quarreled with the Indians, and they drove him away. {See "Mineral Waters," by Reuben Sears, page 89.}

In the next summer, that of 1774, John Arnold, from Rhode Island, with his young family, tried his fortunes at Saratoga Springs. {See "Steele's Analysis," 2d edition, p. 28.} He provided himself with a few articles suitable for the Indian trade, mostly spirituous liquors, and with these and a few household goods, took the route followed by Schouten three years before to High Rock spring.

Upon his arrival Arnold took possession of Schouten's deserted cabin, and, making some improvements, opened a kind of rude tavern for the visitors of the springs.

This pioneer hotel had but a single room or two on the ground floor, with a chamber overhead. In sight of it were sixteen Indian cabins filled with their savage occupants. In the rocky ledges near by were numerous dens of rattlesnakes. There were so many of these reptiles then at the springs, that the early visitors often had to hang their beds from the limbs of the trees to avoid them. Nightly, the wolves howled, and the panther screamed; daily, the black bears picked berries in the little clearings, and the wild deer and the moose drank from the brook, while the eagle yearly built her nest on the tops of the towering pines. Such was the style and such were the surroundings of the first rough hotels of the wilderness springs of a hundred years ago, that led the way in the long line of magnificent structures that have since graced the modern village.



Arnold kept his little forest tavern for two summers, and was succeeded by Samuel Norton. Both Schouten and Arnold had remained only during the summers at the springs. Upon the approach of winter they had shut up their house and gone over to the settlement on the east side of the lake. But Samuel Norton came to stay through the year, and he therefore was the first permanent settler of Saratoga Springs. Norton, before he came, had permission in writing from Isaac Low to occupy and improve a farm in the vicinity of the "salt spring" at Saratoga. Norton took possession of the Schouten House in the fall of 1776, the same season Arnold left it, and continued to make improvements during the next season of 1777. But at the approach of Burgoyne's army from the north Arnold became alarmed for the safety of his family, and he removed them to a place of less danger from the aggressions of the contending parties, and for six years the springs were left without a single white inhabitant.

Before the close of the war Samuel Norton died, and in the spring of 1783 one of his sons resumed the occupancy of his father's former possessions at the springs.

Samuel Norton and his brother Asa came originally from Wales, where they belonged to a good family, some members of which had held high official positions. They first settled at New Bedford, where Samuel married Sarah Deems. Their children were Samuel, Asa, Isaiah, Rhoda, Sarah, Polly, Louise, and Cora. One of Samuel Norton's granddaughters, Mrs. Howland, is still living on the east side of Saratoga lake. She says her grandfather at one time was eleven months in succession without seeing a white visitor at the springs.

In the fall of 1787, Gideon Morgan bought the Norton place, and the same year sold it to Alexander Bryan.

Bryan became a permanent settler and remained many years.

Bryan in 1787 took possession of the Schouten House, which was situate on the northwest corner of Front and Rock streets, near the site of what is now called the Empire House. On the opposite corner, on the ground now occupied by the stone house still known as the Bryan House, Bryan built another log house, which he opened for the accommodation of summer visitors.

These two rude log houses, thus situate on opposite sides of Rock street at its junction with Front street, near the High Rock spring, were the only "hotels" at Saratoga Springs, with the exception of the "Yellow" house built by Benjamin Risley just before the year 1800, until Gideon Putnam laid the foundations of the Grand Union in the year 1801.

As has been seen above, Alexander Bryan came to the springs in 1787. His parents were fugitives from Acadia, in Nova Scotia, at the time of the dispersion of its inhabitants by the English, celebrated in Longfellow's poetic story of "Evangeline."

After being driven from Acadia, Bryan's parents settled in Dutchess Co., N. Y. Bryan there married a sister of Senator Talmadge, and before the War of the Revolution removed to a place two miles above Waterford, where he opened a tavern, which he kept for many years.

"Bryan," says Dr. John H. Steele in his "Analysis," "was a shrewd and somewhat eccentric character, and the events of his life, if generally known, would undoubtedly place his name among the patriots of his time, and furnish a deserved monument to his memory.

"He was, I believe, a native of the State of Connecticut, but emigrated to that of New York early in life, and fixed his residence in the county of Dutchess. Here he connected himself by marriage with a highly-respectable family, and some years after removed to the town of Half-Moon, in the county of Saratoga, where he commenced the business of tavern-keeping, at a place situated about two allies above Waterford, on what was then the great road, which furnished the principal means of communication between the northern and southern frontiers. On this spot he continued to reside during the War of the Revolution. and his house, of course, became frequently the resort of the partisans of the contending parties; and such was the adroitness of his management, that he became the unreserved confidant of both parties, without even being once suspected of treachery by either. Of his patriotism, however, and his sincere attachment to the interests of his country, there cannot exist a doubt.

"The important secrets which he frequently obtained from his confiding friends, the Tories, were soon disclosed to the committee of safety, with whom he managed to keep constant although a secret communication. The numerous and essential services which he thus rendered to his country continued for a long time to excite the admiration and gratitude of his few surviving associates, to whom alone they were known, and by whom their importance could only be properly estimated; and it is to be regretted that to the day of his death they remained unacknowledged and unrewarded by any token or profession of gratitude from his country.

"When General Gates took the command of the northern army, he applied to the committee of safety of Stillwater, to provide a suitable person to go into Burgoyne's camp, with a view to obtain a knowledge of the movements of the enemy. Bryan was immediately selected as a person well qualified to undertake the hazardous enterprise, and he readily agreed to accomplish it. About the same time he was applied to by a friend of the enemy to convey some intelligence which he deemed of importance to Burgoyne; this he likewise undertook, having secretly obtained the consent of General Gates for that purpose.

"By pursuing a circuitous route, he arrived unmolested at the camp of the enemy, which was then situated in the vicinity of Fort Edward. Having had several interviews with General Burgoyne, by whom he was closely examined, he was finally employed by that officer to superintend some concerns in the ordnance department. He tarried sufficiently long to obtain the required information, when he privately left the camp in the gray of the morning of the 15th of September; but he had not proceeded many miles before he discovered that he was pursued by two horsemen; these, however, he contrived to avoid, and arrived safely at Gates' headquarters late on the following night, and communicated the first intelligence of the enemy's having crossed the Hudson and being on the advance to Stillwater. This intelligence was of great importance, as it led to the immediate preparation for the sanguinary engagement which ensued on the 19th of the same month.

"Bryan continued to reside at the springs for mere than thirty years, and until age had rendered him incompetent for active life.

"He then retired to the county of Scoharie, where he died at an advanced age. He possessed a strong constitution, a sound and vigorous mind, and a benevolent and kind disposition. The poor, the miserable, and the unfortunate were always the objects of his care, his kindness, and his charity. But his eccentricities often involved him in difficulties with his more opulent neighbors, and, at times, disturbed the tranquillity of his most intimate friends."



In the year 1790 a new era dawned upon Saratoga Springs. In that year, about the time Benajah Douglas, from Lebanon, and Nicholas Low, from New York, were making their first purchases at Ballston Spa, Benjamin Risley and his two sons-in-law, Gideon Putnam and Dr. Clement Blakesley came to settle at Saratoga Springs. Risley's first above-named son-in-law, Gideon Putnam, was destined to become the founder of modern Saratoga, which rises to-day (1878) in all its fairy-like magnificence and beauty above the more humble scene of Putnam's early labors.

Benjamin Risley was a prominent citizen of Hartford, Conn., and a man of considerable wealth for those days. When he came to Saratoga in 1790, the capital he brought with him was the foundation of the wealth of Saratoga Springs, aside from the landed interests of the Waltons and the Livingstons.

Upon coming to the springs, Mr. Risley bought of Catharine Van Dam and others several lots of land situate on the north side of Rock street, between Catharine and Front streets, upon which he built a tavern, afterwards kept by Thaddeus Smith. Risley's descendants in the village still hold some of the land.

The children of Benjamin Risley were six daughters, - Theodosia, who married Dr Clement Blakesley, the first physician at the springs, who after he came lived for some time in the Schouten House. Phila, who married Matthew Lyon, who established the first newspaper at the Springs upon capital furnished by Mr. Risley. Even the name of this pioneer paper is forgotten. Lyon afterwards removed to Washington. Doanda, who married Gideon Putnam. Mary, who married Asher Taylor. Laura, who married Judge Pease, of Ohio. Nancy, who married a Mr. Lawrence, who was a member of Congress from Louisiana.

The daughter of Nancy was the Mrs. Donnelson who presided at the White House during General Jackson's administration.

Gideon Putnam belongs to the same family-tree on a branch of which hangs the name of Israel Putnam, of Revolutionary memory. He was undoubtedly a man of indomitable energy and perseverance above his fellows.

In the year 1800 there were two rival competitors for the proud position of the "world's greatest watering-place," - Saratoga Springs and Ballston Spa. But Ballston Spa had then already nearly ten years the start. Large hotels or boarding-houses had been erected there by Messrs. Douglas and Low shortly after 1790, while the only accommodations at Saratoga up to and before 1800 were the two log huts near High Rock spring.

Gideon Putnam was the man at Saratoga to comprehend the situation. In the year 1800 Congress spring was still surrounded by the primeval wilderness. In the year 1800 Gideon Putnam bought a lot of land contiguous to Congress spring, upon which now stand the Grand Union and Congress Hall, and, cutting down and clearing off the heavy pine timber, began the erection of Union Hall.

Union Hall was the first large and commodious hotel erected for visitors at Saratoga Springs. The timber for this building was hewn from the tall pines that grew on its site. It was the first large frame building erected at Saratoga Springs, and the day it was raised people from all the towns near by gathered there to see what they called "Putnam's folly." The idea of building a three-story house near Saratoga Springs for boarders was then deemed preposterous in the highest degree. But, in spite of their sneers, Putnam pushed his enterprise to its completion, and the brilliant result has more than answered his fondest anticipations.

After building the Grand Union, Gideon Putnam laid out the new village which sprang up around Congress spring. In laying out this village he displayed great liberality. The streets, especially, were laid out very wide, and everything else was projected upon a scale commensurate with the importance of the future watering-place, which Gideon Putnam seemed to see with almost prophetic vision rising in grandeur and beauty unsurpassed around what was then but little removed from being but the springs of the wilderness.

On his map, which is now extant, Broad street is laid out in front of Union Hall, one hundred and twenty feet in width. This is the origin of the beautiful street, called Broadway, of the modern village. At the time he made his map there were three springs discovered near Union Hall. The Congress, Columbian, and the Hamilton. Putnam so laid out his village that each of these springs was left in a public street, and must therefore forever remain open and free to the people. Broadway extended south far enough to bring within it the Columbian spring. Congress street he laid out sixty-six feet wide, and this left the Congress spring near the centre of the street, and therefore public property. The Hamilton spring was also left by Gideon Putnam far in the street. After Putnam's death all the streets but Broadway, north of Congress street, were narrowed down to their present limits, thus bringing the springs outside the street limits, and making them private property. Gideon Putnam also contemplated laying out a large public park, to be forever free to the public. The map named above is now in possession of his granddaughter, Mrs. Shackelford, at Saratoga Springs.

Of Gideon Putnam a biographical sketch is elsewhere given in these pages.

The children of Gideon Putnam and his wife, Doanda Risley, were five sons and four daughters. The sons were Benjamin, Lewis, Rockwell, Washington, and Lorin; the daughters were Betsey, Nancy, Aurelia, and Phila.

Of the sons, Benjamin's children were Amelia, Gideon, Laura G., Charles E., Mary E., and John R. The children of Lewis were Mervin G., Lorin B., and William L. The children of Rockwell were Elizabeth and George R. The children of Washington were George W., Walter, Florence, and Anne. The child of Lorin was Caroline.

Of Gideon Putnam's daughters, Betsey married Isaac Taylor; their children were Putnam, Washington, and Eliza. Nancy married Frederick Andrews; their daughter was Caroline. Aurelia married Joel Clement; their children were William H., John, Mary, Caroline C., and Frances. Phila married Abel A. Kellogg, and their children were Laura and Sarah. Phila street was named in her honor.

About the year 1794 two brothers, John and Ziba Taylor, settled at Saratoga. They seem to have been the pioneer merchants of the place. The first opened a small store in the old Schouten house, then owned and occupied by Mr. Risley. He afterwards built a small log house on the high ground about fifty rods north of the high rock, in which they also placed a stock of goods. They afterwards became extensive land-owners in the neighborhood, cleared up the country, built mills, and became prominent in affairs. John Taylor owned and first developed the Ten springs, and resided there for many years. Ziba continued in business in the upper village. The two brothers married sisters. John married Polly and Ziba married Sally, daughters of Richard Searing, an early settler of Greenfield. Ziba's children by this marriage were Julius, Miles, Harry, Laura, and Mary, wife of Dr. John H. Steele. The children of John were Calvin, John, Miles, Betsey, and Laura. We have now traced the history of the most of the pioneers of the village of Saratoga Springs, from its rude beginnings in the year 1771 up to the year 1800.

Of those who moved into the village after the year 1800 our space will not permit such particular mention. Their history will be to some extent found in the records of their acts in connection with the social, industrial, and political life presented in the following pages. The pioneers of a country, the founders of its destiny, those who brave the hardships and dangers of its first settlement, are entitled to notice. Of a truth, to be a pioneer of itself makes one's name historic; but those who come afterward cannot expect their names to become historic only so far as they take active part in affairs, and thus to a greater or less extent do historic deeds.

It has been seen that up to the year 1800 all there was of the village was what was afterwards known as the upper village. It was what grew up around the High Rock spring. The lower village, which grew up around Congress springs, was, up to the year 1800, covered with the primeval forest. Up to the year 1810 there were but few houses in the lower village, and only twenty or thirty in the upper. Between the two was nearly a mile of forest, filled with towering pines. When Gideon Putnam made his will, he described his land in the neighborhood of Phila street, and to the west of it, "the pine plains."

Up to 1820, and even to 1830, there was a long stretch of pine-woods between the upper and lower villages. When Judge Walton commenced building the old Pavilion Hotel, on the site of the present town-hall, in 1819, he cut down the timber for the frame-work on the site of the building. About the only remnant of this noble old forest still remaining is Pine Grove, at the Walworth mansion. In early days a deep gully or ravine extended across Broadway a little to the north of the Holden House. This ravine was so deep that to persons standing on the piazza of the United States Hotel, just built in 1824, stage-coaches coming down Broadway would go out of sight in crossing it.

The following are the recollections of some of the older inhabitants in regard to the village prior to its incorporation, in 1826.



Ransom Cook came to Saratoga Springs, as a journeyman in the manufacture of furniture, in 1813. He says the village was then mostly a pine grove. Union Hall was on the site of the Grand Union, and the frame of the Congress Hotel was up. On the north corner, opposite the Congress House, same side of Broadway, was the store of Miles Beach. There were not more than three or four other building on Broadway. The upper village was then quite flourishing. There was no meeting-house at the Springs. Boys and men played ball on Sunday, and then went fishing. There were no lawsuits, particularly for assault and battery. If A struck B, B "licked" A, or hired somebody to do it.



Gardner Bo]lard came with his father from Westford, Vt., in 1812. Of two sisters of Gardner, one became Mrs. Philo Waterbury, and the other Mrs. Benjamin Hall. Gardner was eleven years old when his father moved here. Their house was at the upper village, located on the ground now occupied by the brick house of Charles M. White. The Bullard house was afterwards moved to the lake by Esquire Green. Mr. Bullard supposes there were thirty or forty houses in Saratoga Springs in 1812. Congress Hotel was raised that year. The store of John and Ziba Taylor he regards as the only one in 1812. Mr. Gleason then had a blacksmith's shop in the upper village.

In or before 1820, Robert McDonald had opened a grocery-store on the place of James Chapman's present dwelling. Soon after 1812 a bakery was established by Palmer & Waterbury. McDonald's store was early changed to a hardware trade. Langworthy was in the same line. There was a cabinet-making shop at the High Rock village. The old "red store" was an early affair; stood about on the site of the present residence of widow Brockett. In 1812 the Columbian Hotel, kept by Jotham Holmes, stood where the Ainsworth building is now. Mr. Bullard thinks Calvin Munger opened a store about 1820.

Walter J. Hendrick states the early stores in Saratoga Spring, 1812 to 1814, as Taylor's, and the store of Beach & Farlin; Hendrick & Knowlton, 1815; Joseph Westcot, 1820; 1818, Ashbel Andrews and Ferdinand Andrews; Nathan Lewis, 1816.

The recollections of Mr. Nathaniel Waterbury, who is another of our oldest inhabitants, are inserted in the history of the town of Saratoga Springs, on subsequent pages

For a further account of some of those who have been prominent actors in the growth and development of the village, the reader is referred to the biographical pages of this work.

In sharp contrast with the meagre sight exhibited by this village to those early beholders, even fifty years ago, we now see, and they still live to see, miles of beautiful streets adorned with elegant residences, many of which are models of architectural beauty, affording in their construction rare specimens of modern decorative art.

Among the more prominent of such residences, which are surrounded by beautiful grounds, may be named the following:

North Broadway. - Judge Charles S. Lester, Charles C. Lester, Edward R. Stevens, Dr. B.W. King, James H. Wright, William C. Bronson, William A. Shepard, Mrs. Mary S. Wayland, Joseph Baucus, Samuel A. Willoughby, Mr. Ehninger.

South Broadway. - John A. Lee, George S. Rice, Mrs. John H. White.

Circular Street. - Hon. George S. Batcheller, Mrs. George R. Putnam, Hon. A. Bockes, Mr. Sherman, Cornelius Sheehan, A.W. Shepherd, Mrs. Robert Milligan, John Newland, Arthur D. Seavey.

Franklin Square. - Hon. James M. Marvin, George Harvey, residence of the late Judge Marvin.

Washington Street. - Mrs. Catharine S. Stevens.

Phila Street. - David F. Ritchie.

Union Avenue. - Charles Reed.

Matilda Street. - Seymour Ainsworth.

Spring Street. - James I. Wakefield.

There are many other residences the names of whose owners do not now occur to the writer which are of equal elegance and architectural beauty.



The village of Saratoga Springs was first incorporated by act of the Legislature of the State, passed April 17, 1826. In that act the village limits were defined as follows, to wit:

"SECTION 1. Be it enacted by the people of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, That all that district of country lying in the town of Saratoga Springs, county of Saratoga, and State of New York, situated between two lines parallel to, and each half of a mile distant from the following described line, to wit; beginning on the line between the Livingston and Ostrander lots, in the centre of the highway, near the house of Jesse Ostrander; running northerly as the highway runs, till it strikes Broad street, as laid out on a map of lots at Saratoga Springs, belonging to Gideon Putnam; thence northerly along the centre of Broad street till the said line intersects the highway leading from the upper village to Greenfield, near the Methodist meeting-house; thence north to Greenfield line, shall continue to be called and known by the name of the village of Saratoga Springs."

The present village limits are described as below by an act of the Legislature, passed March 26, 1866.


"SECTION 1. All that tract of land in the town of Saratoga Springs lying and included within two parallel lines, one commencing at a point in the north line of said town three-quarters of a mile east of the centre of Broadway, at its intersection with the south line of the town of Greenfield, and running from such point, on a direct line, to a point as far south as the south line of lands belonging to the heirs of Augustus McKinney, and three-fourths of a mile east of the centre of the highway at said McKinney's lands; and the other of such parallel lines commencing at a point in the north line of the town of Saratoga Springs, three-quarters of a mile west of the centre of Broadway, aforesaid, and running from thence, on a direct line, to a point as far south as the south line of lands belonging to the heirs of Augustus McKinney, and to a point three-fourths of a mile west from the centre of the highway at said McKinney's lands, shall be known by the corporate name of the ' Village of Saratoga Springs.' "



1826. - John H. Steel, Wm. L.F. Warren, presiding justices; Joshua Porter, president; John Bryan, Rockwell Putnam, Robert McDonnal, David Cobb, trustees; Peter V. Wiggins, clerk; John A. Waterbury, treasurer; Joshua Blum, Joseph White, constables; Samuel Mathews, pathmaster.

1827. - John H. Steel., president; John Boardman, Ransom Cook, Christopher B. Brown, Samuel Chapman, trustees; Wm. C. Waterbury, clerk; Gideon Conant, treasurer; Joshua Blum, Joseph White, constables.

1828. - John H. Steel, president; Samuel Chapman, Daniel Mathews, John Boardman, Daniel T. Reed, trustees; William C. Waterbury, clerk; Gideon Conant, treasurer.

An act to amend, passed April 23, 1829.

1830. - John H. Steel, president; John Clark, William A. Langworthy, Runion Martin, Isaac Taylor, trustees; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer; Miles Taylor, clerk.

1831. - John H. Steel, president; William A. Langworthy, Runion Martin, Isaac Taylor, Abel Hendrick, trustees; Daniel D. Benedict, clerk; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer.

1832. - John H. Steel, president; Samuel Chapman, Ransom Cook, Judiah Ellsworth, Seth Covill, Jr., trustees; James H. Westcott, treasurer; Daniel D. Benedict, clerk.

1833. - John H. Steel, president; Ransom Cook, Samuel Chapman, Lewis Putnam, Seth Covill, Jr., trustees; James H. Robinson, clerk; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer.

1834. - John H. Steel, president; John Clark, Samuel Putnam, Daniel T. Reed, Seth Covill, Jr., trustees; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer; Henry P. Hyde, clerk.

1835. - John H. Steel, president; John Clark, Daniel T. Reed, Samuel Chapman. Seth Covill, Jr., trustees; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer; Henry P. Hyde, clerk.

1836. - John H. Steel, president; Samuel Chapman, John Clark, Seth Covill, Jr., Daniel T. Reed, trustees; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer; Henry P. Hyde, clerk.

An act to amend, passed April 16, 1836.

1837. - Samuel Chapman, president; William A. Beach, George W. Wilcox, John Clark, Benjamin Hull, trustees; Rockwell Putnam, treasurer; Henry P. Hyde, clerk.

1838. - Thomas G. Marvin, president; Seth Covill, Runion Martin, Robert Gardner, Washington Putnam, trustees; John C. Hulbert, clerk; Joel Clement, treasurer.

1839. - Thomas G. Marvin, president; John L. Perry, Washington Putnam, James W. Chesney, Jesse Morgan, trustees; Carey B. Moon, clerk; Joel Clement, treasurer.

1840. - R. Gardner, president; John L. Perry, Runion Martin, Lucius D. Langley, Robert Gardner, James W. Chesney, trustees; Carey B. Moon, clerk; Joel Clement, treasurer.

1841. - Thomas J. Marvin, president; John Clarke, Seth Covill, Robert Gardner, W. Putnam, trustees; Samuel Pitkins, clerk; Joel Clements, treasurer.

1842. - Robert McDonnell, president; Thomas J. Marvin, Washington Putnam, Abel A. Kellogg, John L. Perry, trustees; W.H. Andrews, clerk; Joel Clement treasurer.

1843. - Abel A. Kellogg, president; S.R. Ostrander, Runion Martin, Lewis Putnam, Isaac Hoag, trustees; Wm. H. Andrews, clerk; Joel Clements, treasurer.

1844. - Thomas J. Marvin, president; W. Putnam, John Morris, S.C. West, James R. Smith, trustees; James H. Westcott, clerk; Joel Clement, treasurer.

Amendment passed April 23, 1844.

1845. - Daniel D. Benedict, president; Augustus Bockes, Isaac L. Smith, John L. Perry, Thaddeus Smith, trustees; William H. Andrews, clerk; Horace Dowday, treasurer.

1846. - Washington Putnam, president; P.H. Cowen, H.H. Martin, W.H. Walton, J.A. Corey, trustees; Samuel Pitkin, clerk.

1847. - Washington Putnam, president; P.H. Cowen, H.H. Martin, W.H. Walton, J.A. Corey, trustees; Geo. W. Spooner, clerk.

1848. - W. Putnam, president; J.A. Corey, W.S. Alger, Samuel Chapman, William Cook, trustees; J.W. Crane, clerk.

1849. - Washington Putnam, president; John L. Perry, Joseph D. Briggs, Henry P. Hyde, Robert Gardner, trustees; John W. Crane, clerk; Thomas McDonnell, treasurer.

1850. - John A. Corey, president; Robert Gardner, Dennis O'Neil, Wilks S. Alger, Joseph White, trustees; John W. Crane, clerk; Thomas McDonnell, treasurer.

1851. - John A. Corey, president; Robert Gardner, Walter J. Hendrick, Hiram A. Dedrick, John Clow, trustees; John W. Crane, clerk; W.H. Andrews, treasurer.

1852. - John A. Corey, president; Robert Gardner, Hiram A. Dedrick, John Clow, Walter J. Hendrick, trustees; Jesse L. Fraser, clerk; Gideon Putnam, treasurer.

1853. - John A. Corey, president; W.J. Hendrick, Hiram A. Dedrick, John Clow, Wm. S. Balch, trustees; Gideon Putnam, treasurer; J.R. Rockwell, clerk.

1854. - John A. Corey, president; Walter J. Hendrick, Hiram A. Dedrick, Wm. S. Balch, Runion Martin, trustees; Joseph D. Briggs, treasurer; Chas. H. Hulbert, clerk.

1855. - J.A. Corey, president; W.S. Balch, R. Martin, W.J. Hendrick, R. Wariner, trustees; C.C. More-house, clerk.

1856. - John A. Corey, president; Wm. S. Balch, Walter J. Hendrick, Amos S. Maxwell, E.R. Stevens, P.H. Greene, trustees; C.C. Morehouse, clerk.

1857. - John H. White, president; Robert Gardner, Amos S. Maxwell, W.J. Hendrick, P.H. Greene, H.H. Martin, trustees; James H. Huling, clerk.

1858. - J.H. White, president; R. Gardner, H.H. Martin, A.S. Maxwell, S. Ainsworth, G.F. White, trustees; W.L. Putnam, clerk.

1859. - Peckham H. Greene, president; Owen T. Sparks, Charles S. Lester, Amos H. Maxwell, George F. White, Seymour Ainsworth, trustees; Wm. L. Putnam, clerk.

1860. - P.H. Greene, president; C.S. Lester, John H. White, Geo. T. White, Wm. B. Gage, Seymour Ainsworth, trustees; Wm. F. Putnam, clerk.

1861. - J.H. White, president; G.F. White, W.B. Gage, J.D. Briggs, C.S. Lester, Amasa Keith, trustees; J. Gunning, Jr., clerk.

1862. - Charles S. Lester, president; Charles S. Lester, George F. White, Joseph D. Briggs, Amasa Keith, William B. Gage, Alexander A. Patterson, trustees; John Gunning, Jr., clerk.

1863. - John H. White, president; George F. White, William B. Gage, Alexander A. Patterson, John H. White, Amasa Keith, William Slocum, trustees; Ferdinand Height, clerk.

1864. - John S. Leake, president; John R. Putnam, Franklin T. Hill, Silas P. Briggs, Alexander A. Patterson, John W. Gaffney, John H. Wager, trustees; Lorin B. Putnam, clerk.

1865. - John S. Leake, president; John R. Putnam, Alexander A. Patterson, John H. Wager, Hiram H. Martin, Abner D. Wait, Seymour Hartwell, trustees; Lorin B. Putnam, clerk.

1866. - John H. White, president; Hiram H. Martin, Abner D. Wait, Seymour Hartwell, William Bennett, James H. Wright, Daniel O. Gorman, trustees; Ferdinand Height, clerk.

1867. - John H. White, president; William Bennett, James H. Wright, Daniel O. Gorman, James P. Butler, Charles H. Holden, Hiram C. Tefft, trustees; Ferdinand Height, clerk.

1868. - John H. White, president; James P. Butler, Charles H. Holden, Hiram C. Tefft, Ferdinand W. Fonda, William H. Walton, Bernard McGovern, trustees; Ferdinand Height, clerk.

1869. - John H. White, {John H. White resigned as president December 24, 1899, and James H. Wright was appointed to fill the vacancy, January 7,1870.} president; Ferdinand W. Fonda, William H. Walton, Bernard McGovern, James P. Butler, Nathan D. Morey, Michael Walsh, trustees; Ferdinand Height, clerk.

1870. - James H. Wright, president; James P. Butler, Nathan D. Morey, Michael Walsh, John P. Alger, Elias H. Peters, Rhody Delaney, trustees; William L. Graham, clerk.

1871. - James H. Wright, president; John P. Alger, Elias H. Peters, Rhody Delaney, Lorenzo L. Brintnall, Daniel M. Mains, Jerome Pitney, trustees; Charles H. Tefft, Jr., clerk.

1872. - Caleb W. Mitchell, president; Lorenzo L. Brintnall, Daniel M. Mains, Jerome Pitney, Lewis Ellsworth, George Mingay, William Heaslip, trustees; Patrick McDonald, clerk.

1873. - Caleb W. Mitchell, president; Lewis Ellsworth, George Mingay, William Heaslip, Lorenzo Brintnall, Daniel M. Mains, John C. Dennin, trustees; Patrick McDonald, clerk.

1874. - Charles A. Allen, president; Lorenzo L. Brintnall, Daniel M. Mains, John C. Dennin, John. P. Alger, Gradus D. Smith, Arthur Swanick, trustees; Patrick McDonald, clerk.

1875. - Charles A. Allen, president; John P. Alger, Gradus D. Smith, Arthur Swanick, George B. Hinckley, Dewitt C. Hoyt, Michael Walsh, trustees; Patrick McDonald, clerk.

1876. - Stephen H. Richards, president; George B. Hinckley, Dewitt C. Hoyt, Michael Walsh, Lorenzo L. Brintnall, Frank D. Wheeler, Jr., Patrick Brennan, trustees; William L. Grahame, clerk.

1877. - Stephen H. Richards, president; Lorenzo L. Brintnall, George B. Hinckley, Frank D. Wheeler, Jr., Reuben Merchant, Patrick Brennan, Hiram W. Hays, trustees; William L. Grahame, clerk.

1878. - Thomas Noxon, president; Lorenzo L. Brintnall, George B. Hinckley, Reuben Merchant, David Rouse, Hiram W. Hays, Daniel Leary, trustees; William L. Grahame, clerk.



Transcribed from the original text and html prepared by Bill Carr, last updated 2/7/00.

Please provide me with any feedback you may have concerning errors in the transcription or any supplementary information concerning the contents. wcarr1@nycap.rr.com

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