ALVIN DUANE CHESEBRO. There are few in the county who can count an ancestry any farther back than this gentleman, his great-great-grandfather, Christopher Chesebro, having been a farmer in the days of the colonists, when the New England States were first settled, and his great-grandfather, Harris Chesebro, having been among the first to explore the trackless forested which now constitute Madison County. It was before the present century; and he made his home in the then thinly settled portion of Brookfield, near the present site of what is now known as Clarksville, N.Y. Besides carrying on his little farm, he plied his trade of tailor, going from house to house, cutting and directing the making of the garments which had been spun and woven by the mother of the household. His wife was Miss Patty Champlain, and she was also a native of the Eastern States. In their new home Mr. and Mrs. Harris Chesebro reared nine children; namely, Patty, Harris, Lydia, Samuel, Rhoda, Phoebe, Nathan, Jared, and Ely.
Jared Chesebro, the grandfather of our subject, was reared on the farm of his father. As a matter of course, the educational privileges of that time were exceedingly limited; but, having a naturally bright mind and quick intelligence, he made the very best use of the opportunities afforded him, and after his day’s work was done spent his evenings in hard study over the few books that had been brought from the old New England home. The same studious habits which characterized him as a boy have clung to him always; and to-day, at the age of
eight-five years, he is well read and well posted in current events. When he left home, he was very young; and he went to work out by the month for the farmers around Brookfield. By economy and thrift he was soon able to purchase sixteen acres of land, which formed the nucleus of the beautiful farm of three hundred acres which to-day forms the homestead residence. Little by little, year by year, a few acres were added before the present large area was obtained; and many an anxious hour was passed, and many a sacrifice made, before the requisite sum was earned to pay for the coveted purchase. But he could not have accomplished this unless the hand that managed his household affairs had been thrifty and economical; and fortunate, indeed, was he in possessing a wife who was a fitting helper in his struggle in life. He married Miss Sarah, daughter of Zebulon and Sarah Brown, who were originally from Petersburg, N.Y. By her careful management and wise counsels he was able to carry on successfully his outdoor affairs, knowing full well that no waste or extravagance in the home would counteract his efforts to save expenses. They had two children, J. Hiram and Rhoda L. The latter died when two years old. The grandmother is still living-an active, hearty lady of eight-four years—and enjoys, with her beloved husband, the happiness of a serene old age. Hand in hand they have walked the pathway of life, confident in their love for each other; and no more beautiful and peaceful home can be found than theirs. Jared
Chesebro is now eight-five years old, and is still a keen, active man, with a memory which easily recalls all the stirring events of the days when he himself, a native of the county, grew up with it from its very earliest settlement. He served as Road Commissioner for six years.
Their only son, Hiram, assisted in carrying on the farm, and, when he became of age, purchased the place adjoining, where he still resides. He is a man of more than ordinary importance in the county, and is universally respected and esteemed. He has been Assessor for three terms. He married Miss Harriet S., daughter of Alric and Drury Williams, of Brookfield; and they have three children—Alvin Duane, Ora D., and Ida Louisa. Ora D. married Arthur Page of Brookfield, N.Y.; and they have one son, who is named Alvin.
Alvin Duane is the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. Hiram Chesebro, and was born on the old homestead in 1855. Until eighteen years of age he attended school and resided with his
parents. He then married, and assumed the management of the farm, until failing health compelled him to relinquish its duties, and he removed to Brookfield. His health improving, in company with D. F. Maine he opened a hardware store, but after a short time sold out his interest, and returned to the farm of his grandfather, where he superintends and manages affairs. His wife was formerly Hattie A. Hinkley, of Brookfield; and
she is a daughter of Daniel and Jennie (Keith) Hinkley. Our subject and his wife have an adopted son, William Le Roy. They are members of the Methodist church, as are now all the family, though originally Quakers. In their political affiliations Alvin D. Chesebro, his father and grandfather, are adherents of the Republican party. The Chesebro family stand among the most prominent and respected in the community, having always conducted themselves in such a manner as to command the regard which is entertained for them.
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