MRS. EMILY OTIS COLEMAN, one of the few residents of De Ruyter
who have passed the age of four-score years, feeble in frame, but sound in
mind, was born in Truxton, Cortland County, August 26, 1809.
Her father, Jacob Otis, who was born in Colchester, Conn., came with his parents from that State, of which they also are supposed to have been natives, and settled at an early day in Saratoga County, New York. His mother's name before marriage was Day.
Mr. Otis followed the trade of clothier a few years in the early part of his life. Coming to Saratoga County a young man before marriage, he engaged in mercantile business in the town of Mayfield. From this place he removed to Truxton, being a pioneer in that town. Here, besides dealing in general merchandise, he operated a mill for dressing cloth and kept a public house. He was accidentally killed in the fifty-fourth year of his age by the falling of a bridge. While in business at Mayfield, he made a trip to Massachusetts and brought home a wife, Agnes Austin by name, a native of Sheffield, daughter of Abner and Eleanor (Kellogg) Austin.
Mrs. Coleman was the third of a family seven children, the others being Austin W., Augusta, Ann Eliza, William H., Charles, and Maria.
She lived with her parents, attending first the district school and later the Cortland Female Academy, until her marriage, at the age of twenty-five years, with Noah T. Coleman, a native of Otsego County, who was was born December 30, 1809. Her husband's father, Noah H. Coleman, came as a pioneer to Otsego County, and later was settled for a time in Cazenovia, where he was a druggist. Returning to Otsego County, both he and his wife spent their last years at Exeter. He married Mary Tunnuliff, daughter of John Tunnuliff, a pioneer settler of Otsego County.
Noah T. Coleman came to De Ruyter to live at the age of thirteen as a clerk in the store of Colonel Jenks, being allowed for a time to attend school a part of every year. Diligent and faithful in the discharge of his duties from the first, he was advanced from one position to another till he was competent to manage the entire business, including the purchase of goods in Albany and their transportation by teams,--in itself no slight affair, in those days of no railroads and no canals. Thrifty and economical, he laid up money enough to enable him after marriage to start in business on his own account. A man of enterprise and of excellent capabilities, strictly upright and honorable in all
transactions, he was for many years a leading merchant of De Ruyter. His death, in 1888, left a void not easy to be filled. Two sons and two daughters, all of them now living were born to Mr. and Mrs. Coleman: Noah Otis, who married Emma Carpenter, and has one son, Frederick A.; Agnes, wife of W. W. Rainey; William H., who married Carrie Murphy, and has one son, Noah T., now in the United States Naval Service; Mary T., wife of De Witt De Long, who has two children, Otis C. and Maud.
Mrs. Coleman is a faithful member of the Presbyterian church. Kind-hearted, liberal-handed, blest with a cheerful temperament, cherishing an unfaltering trust in Divine Providence, tenderly cared for by her nearest of kin, she lives esteemed and beloved by all, her presence in the home circle being felt as a benediction.
Much pleasure is taken here presenting the portrait of the late Noah T. Coleman, who was for many years a leading business man of De Ruyter, and recognized as such throughout this part of the State. His widow, Mrs. Emily Otis Coleman, who still survives him, will also long be remembered for her many virtues.
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