THE LEADING CITIZENS OF MADISON COUNTY

CONTENTS
Preface
Names Index
Portrait Index


   THOMAS P. PARKER, deceased. The memoir of this estimable man is furnished, as a mark of filial love, by his daughter Jennie. He was born in Stockbridge, Madison County, N.Y., in 1827. His long line of ancestors date farther back than the Revolutionary War, and were early colonists in Connecticut. His great-grand- father was Gamaliel Parker, a patriot soldier; and his grandfather, Joel Parker, was reared and married in Connecticut, where he lived until the winter of 1804-5, emigrating then to New York State, accompanied by his wife and infant son. The journey was made over-land with oxen and sled, and all their household effects were brought with them. He settled in what is now the town of Stockbridge, and it is said that there were only two white families in the vicinity at that time. Mr. Parker bought a tract of timbered land, and commenced at once to fell trees and lay out a farm. On the edge of this clearing he built his little log cabin; and, surrounded with the primeval forest, whose silence was only broken by the stealthy tread of the prowling Indian or the scaring cry of the panther, the young husband and wife started their new home. Those pioneer women must indeed have had strong nerves and a still stronger faith.
   After residing on this place for many years, they sold it, and removed to Georgetown, Madison County, where they bought a farm, and resided there until the death of Mr. Parker, at the age of seventy-two years. The maiden name of his wife, who was from New Haven, Conn., was Alba Cinda Bunnel. She lived to be eighty-seven years old, having reared ten of her fourteen children.
   Chester G. Parker, the father of the subject of our present sketch, was the eldest child of this pioneer couple, and was but a few months old when he was brought to New York State, having been born in 1804. His childhood days were the very rough ones of pioneer life, his only playmates the stolid little Indians, who looked on the white child as something almost supernatural. When old enough to learn a trade, he adopted that of carpenter, and followed it for a time. He then went to Stockbridge to reside, and married Miss Electa Park, who was born in Smithfield, Madison County, daughter of Barney and Fanny (Hiscock) Park, natives of Connecticut and pioneers of Smithfield. A few years after his marriage Mr. Parker went to Cicero, Onondaga County, and there followed the trade of cooper and did some farming for ten years. He returned to Stockbridge in 1838, and in 1848 bought twenty-two acres of land in the town of Lenox, adding to it from time to time, and lived there until his death, October 12, 1881. Seven children were reared by them--Franklin E., Fanny L., Thomas P., Ruth A., Betsey E., George W., Harriet F. The mother died July 9, 1883.
   Thomas P. Parker, the second son of Chester G. and Electa (Park) Parker, followed general farming and hop-raising. He married Miss Hettie Haskin, who was born in Sullivan, Madison County, where her father gave her such opportunities as offered of acquiring a good education. After marriage her husband bought a farm in the town of Lenox, two and one-half miles south of the village of Oneida. On this he erected substantial frame buildings, improved the place greatly, and resided there for the rest of his life. He died in 1877, at the age of forty-nine years. His wife survived him sixteen years, dying May 20, 1893, aged fifty-seven. They had buried two sons, Jay A. and Frank H. The family were members of the Methodist church, and the father was a Republican in politics.
   Miss Jennie M. Parker, daughter of Thomas and Hettie (Haskin) Parker, was born on her father's farm in Lenox, and here continues to make her home. Her maternal great-grandparents were Paul and Patience (Tripp) Gifford. They came from Massachusetts with her maternal grandparents, Daniel A. Haskin and Anna R. (Gifford) Haskin, in 1828. They travelled via the Long Island Sound, Hudson River, and Erie Canal, settling first in Sullivan, before there was any Oneida Village and when there were but very few log houses at Oneida Castle. They were possessed of considerable means when they came to this part of the county, which they did not fail to increase by judicious investments. The great-grandmother died in her ninety-fifth year, in July, 1877, in Massachusetts, having buried her husband some years before. Grandfather Haskin died August 16, 1889, aged eighty-four. The farm on which Miss Parker lives comprises twenty-four acres, eight of which are devoted to hop-raising--a branch of husbandry which has been carried on by the family for some years. She maintains the place in excellent order, and her beautiful home and pleasant surroundings are as attractive as any in the town. Finely educated both in literature and music, Miss Parker fills her place in society with grace and dignity, and gives good evidence in her daily life of the eminent lineage of which she may well be proud.

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