There are several families of this name in America not allied as far as any record now attainable would indicate. The family of which this article treats is known as the "Massachusetts Batchellers." The spelling found in early records has been changed by most of the present descendants. This family has been noted for men of large stature and much physical and mental vigor. While the early generation were necessarily engaged in agriculture, as that was the chief industry of their time, later representatives of the family have found distinction in professional life and the various activities of modern times.
(I) The first of whom any record is now found was Daniel Batcheller, who lived and died near Canterbury, England. He had four sons: Joseph, Henry, Joshua and John. The first two and last of these settled in America.
(II) Joseph, eldest son of Daniel Batcheller, was born in Canterbury, and died in March, 1647, in Wenham, Massachusetts. He came to America in 1636 with his wife Elizabeth, one child and three servants, being also accompanied by his brothers, Henry and John Batcheller. He was a tailor, and settled first in Salem, whence he removed shortly to Wenham. He was made a freeman of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1637, and was deputy to the general court from Wenham in 1644, being the first from that town: The inventory of his estate, made March 3, 1657, stated that he had been dead ten years. His estate was settled by his son Mark. He was one of the original members of the Wenham church, organized October 8, 1644, and his wife was admitted to the same church on the seventh of the following month. In a record regarding a matter of church discipline in Wenham appears the following: "In ye mesne space it pleased God to take to himself brother Batchel, a man wise, moderate and very able to be helpful in such cases." His children were Mark, John, Elizabeth and Hannah.
(III) John, junior son of Joseph and Elizabeth Batcheller, was baptized January 20, 1638, in the First Church of Salem, and died December 17, 1698, in Wenham. His will was made the day preceding his death, and the inventory of his estate made March 20, 1699, showing a valuation of £519 5§. John Batcheller was a juror in the lamentable witchcraft trials of Salem, and in 1692 signed a statement asking forgiveness for his participation therein. He married (first) July 12, 1661, Mary Dennis, who died June 26, 1665, and he married (second) May 4, 1666, Sarah, daughter of Robert Goodale, of Salem. She died March 22, 1729. There were two children of the first wife, John and Joseph. Those of the second were: Mark, Elizabeth, Ebenezer, Hannah, Mary, Sarah and David.
(IV) David, youngest child of John and Sarah (Goodale) Batcheller, was born 1673, in Wenham, where he died January 29, 1766. He was the first to adopt the spelling of the name now used by his descendants. He was prominent in both church and town affairs of Wenham, being town clerk from 1744 to 1748. From his father he inherited a farm of eighteen acres, and he was probably engaged in agriculture. He married (intentions published May 7, 1709), Susannah Whipple, of Ipswich, who died June 1 , 1764. Children: David, Susannah died young), Joseph, Amos, Nehemiah, Abraham, Mary, Susanna.
(V) Abraham, youngest son of David and Susannah (Whipple) Batcheller, was born June 5, 1722, in Wenham, and died January 31, 1813, in Sutton, Massachusetts. He lived for a time in Westboro, and purchased one thousand acres of land in Sutton at one shilling per acre. He was a cooper by trade, a man of strong will and eccentric character. His children were allowed one cup of tea a week, on Sunday morning. When desiring to reach any point in his large domain he hitched up three yoke of oxen and crashed his way in a bee line through the underbrush without making any previous clearing. In 1763 he was a selectman of Sutton, at which time he was called captain. The next year the record of his election as selectman calls him ensign, and also in the two succeeding years. In 1773 and 1782 he was selectman and then was called lieutenant. He married, May 17, 1751, Sarah Newton, born July 1g, 1732, in Westboro, daughter of Abner and Vashti (Eager) Newton. Children: Abraham, Abigail, Vashti, Joseph, Benjamin, Ezra, Sarah and Amos.
(VI) Abraham (2), eldest child of Abraham (1) and Sarah (Newton) Batcheller, was born March 26, 1752, in Sutton, and died August 14, 1832, in Stockton, New York. He received from his father a farm in Sutton, on which he lived thirty years. He was a revolutionary soldier, serving as a corporal in Captain Andrew Elliott's company of Colonel Ebenezer Larned's regiment. He was frequently an officer of Sutton, serving as selectman in 1781. In 1792 he removed to Paris Hill, Oneida county, New York, which was then a wilderness, the present city of Utica containing at the time only three log houses. In 1816 he removed to Stockton, Chautauqua county, New York, where he engaged in farming until his death. He was an active member of the Baptist church, and received the title of lieutenant through service in the state militia.
He married, December 28, 1774, Rebecca Dwight, born May 19, 1754, died April 5, 1842, daughter of Samuel and Jane (Bulkley) Dwight. Children: Paul, Elizabeth, Joseph, Dwight, Rebecca, Abraham, Silence, Levina, Electa, Charles, Sally and Nancy.
(VII) Captain Joseph Batcheller, first surviving son of Lieutenant Abraham (2) and Rebecca (Dwight) Batcheller, was born June 3, 1778, in Sutton, and died July 13, 1871, in Pomfret, New York. In the autumn of 1811 he went to Chautauqua county and located eleven miles south of Dunkirk, where he built a log house and barn, and then returned to Oneida county for his family. In February, 1812, he removed to his new location with a yoke of oxen and sled, spending two weeks on the trip. There he engaged in farming the rest of his life. His military title was derived from service in the militia. He married, in Smithfield, New York, January 18, 1810, Dorothy Needham, born April 22, 1789, died February 20, 1865, in Pomfret. Children 1. Julia Ann, married (first) Milo Barley; (second) Otis Temple. 2. Elizabeth, wife of Joseph Wilson. 3. Varman Needham, a farmer, residing in Stockton. 4. Joseph E., died young. 5. George S., died young. 6. Joseph E., mentioned below. 7. George S., a farmer of Stockton.
(VIII) Joseph Elliott, fourth son of Captain Joseph and Dorothy (Needham) Batcheller, was born December 26, 1822, in Pomfret, and resided in Stockton, where he was a farmer, and died September 22, 1888. He married, in Pomfret, in April, 1848, Achsah Munger, born February 12, 1824. Children: 1. Tower, was a farmer in Stockton. 2. Naomi Adele, was wife of Joseph M. Kelly, a farmer, of Stockton. 3. Delmer E., mentioned below.
(IX) Delmer Elliott, junior son of Joseph E. and Achsah (Munger) Batcheller, was born February 27, 1862, in Pomfret, and resided on the paternal farm until fifteen years of age. He attended the various schools of Stockton, and the State Normal School at Fredonia, New York, afterwards taking a postgraduate course at the Illinois Wesleyan University, which institution has conferred upon him the degree of Bachelor of Philosophy. In the winter of 1881-82 he began teaching at Gerry, Chautauqua county, and was afterwards employed in the same manner at Perrysburg, Stockton and Ripley, in his native county. From 1884 to 1886 he was principal of the Union School and Academy at Mayville, New York. On the organization of School No. 39, in the city of Buffalo, he was appointed principal and thus continued three years. In 1889 he was appointed principal of School No. 45, which included over thirteen hundred pupils and twenty-seven teachers, and continued at the head of this school for thirteen years. Mr. Batcheller is a man of large frame, with strong mentality as well as physical vigor. He was popular with both teachers and pupils in Buffalo, where lie was so long in active educational work. In July, 1902, he was appointed superintendent of the schools of Olean, New York, in which position he continued until February 1, 1908, with success and manifest benefit to the educational system of the city. After resigning the superintendency in Olean, Mr. Batcheller again returned to Buffalo, having associated himself with Mr. C. F. Warner, under the firm name of Warner & Batcheller, and engaged in the business of real estate and insurance. After one and one-half years of success in this business he was unanimously invited to accept the position of superintendent of schools in Dunkirk, New York. Feeling that his calling was to the educational field, which was more congenial than that of business, he accepted and has continued in that position to the present time. For many years he was a member of the Principals' Association of Buffalo, of whose executive committee he was a member and refused its presidency; he is a member of the New York State Teachers' Association, and an active member of the National Educational Association. He is an active member of the Masonic brotherhood, holding membership in Queen City Lodge, No. 338, Free and Accepted Masons, of Buffalo; and Keystone Chapter, No. 163, Royal Arch Masons. For many years he was treasurer of the board of trustees of the Richmond Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church of Buffalo.
He married, in Ripley, July 16, 1884, Saville H. Rickenbrode, born March 4, 1859, who was several years a teacher. Children Pauline Naomi, died in her second year; Delmer Elliott, born May 18, 1891; Margaret Elizabeth, September 19, 1892; Carl Arthur, June 19, 1896.
Source: Cutter, William Richard. Genealogical and family history of western New York: a record of the achievements of her people in the making of a commonwealth and the building of a nation. New York: Lewis Historical Pub. Co., 1912, pp. 599-602.