MRS. CLARISSA C. COOPER, widow of the late Charles Cooper,
who died September 26, 1892, at
the age of sixty-four, is a daughter of Willard and Eliza (Hall) Cotton, the former of whom came from Vermont, and the latter from Massachusetts. The maternal grandfather of Mrs. Cooper, Justus Hall, came to Madison County in 1807, and settled in the town of Lenox, when his daughter Eliza was seven years old. Her grandfather Cotton came to Madison County from Vermont about 1805, when his son Willard was a small boy. He was a farmer in easy circumstances, and with the help of his good wife reared a family of eleven children, of whom four sons and four daughters grew to mature years, all now having passed away. Owen, the eldest of their sons, died at Attica, Wyoming County, N.Y., when upward of ninety years of age.
Willard and Eliza Cotton were the parents of seven children, four sons and three daughters, three of whom are still living, namely: Hamilton, a farmer, near by; Ann, wife of Abner Snell, of Canastota; and Clarissa. Mrs. Cooper is a well-educated lady, having spent three years in the boarding-schools of Clinton and Chittenango. She was married first February 7, 1854, when she was twenty years of age, to Elijah French, of Maine, who was a watchmaker and jeweller, and who died on the farm upon which the subject now lives in 1880, at the age of sixty years, leaving no children. Mrs. French was married in December, 1884, to Charles C. Cooper, who died, as stated in the beginning of this memoir, leaving two sons and one daughter by a former marriage; namely, Edwin M., Clinton H., and Maria, the latter of whom was graduated from the Canastota Academy in 1891, when seventeen years of age, and is now teacher in the public schools. The three children are all at home with Mrs. Cooper, who has given them a mother's tender care, and whom they regard with filial affection. Mrs. Cooper's farm contains one hundred and nine acres, seventy acres of which were taken up by Justus Hall Nearly ninety years ago, when the land was new to cultivation, when this immediate part of the county of Madison was appropriately designated "oak openings." Upon this farm Mr. Hall died suddenly of winter cholera, about 1830, when sixty-four years of age. His widow died in June, 1849, aged seventy-three.
Mr. Cooper was a valued citizen of his town, often elected to offices of honor and trust. At one time he was well-to-do in the world; but through misfortune he lost a portion of his property, which depressing experience doubtless hastened his death. As he was a Mason and an Odd Fellow, these fraternities were very attentive to him during his last illness, and superintended his funeral. Mrs. Cooper, since her husband's death, has successfully managed her place, carrying on general farming, keeping a small dairy, and having a hopyard of from five to ten acres. Now living in the prime of mature womanhood, she may be spoken of as well preserved, her appearance indicating excellent health and an active and contented mind.
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