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William Seely


Gender: Male

Date of Birth: April 25, 1819

Birth Place: Sussex County, NJ

The success which has rewarded the exertions of Mr. Seely represents much hard work on his part. From early boyhood he was self-supporting, for his parents were poor and unable to assist him in getting a start for himself. Working our on farms by the day or month, he gained habits of perseverance and industry, and saving his earnings he finally accumulated a sufficient amount to purchase a home of his own. The farm of which he is the owner and occupant comprises two hundred and ten acres of land, and is situated in the town of Greenville.

The son of Ira and Rachel (Courtright) Seely, our subject was born in Sussex County, N.J., April 25, 1819. At the age of thirteen, having previously attended the district schools for a short time, he began to work in the employ of neighboring farmers, and continued thus engaged for thirteen years. When twenty-six he rented a farm in this town, and here he made his home for five years, at the expiration of which time he purchased his present place. In general farming and the dairy business he has been quite successful, and is numbered among the efficient agriculturists of the county. On his farm he built a creamery, one of the first in the county, and this he operated for several years, the investing proving a profitable one.

September 27, 1844, occurred the marriage of William Seely and Julia Schultz, daughter of James K. and Deborah (Reeves) Schultz, old and highly respected residents of this county, their home being situated near Middletown. Five children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Seely, one of whom died in infancy. Emily married Louis Remey, of Port Jervis, and they have seven children; Lizzie, who died at the age of forty years, was the wife of Merritt C. Manning, of New York City, and at her death left five daughters; Jessie is the widow of John Slawson; John M., who married Mary Smith and has five children, assists in the management of the home farm, and has a milk route in Port Jervis.

In his political views Mr. Seely is an old Jacksonian Democrat, but has never cared to occupy public positions, and has invariably declined nomination for office. Though not identified with any denomination, he assists in the maintenance of the Methodist Episcopal Church, to which his wife belongs. He is a man of genial personality and warm-hearted disposition, a kind and indulgent father, and one greatly loved by his family and respected by his friends. The family of which he is a member is noted for longevity. His grandmother lived to be over one hundred years old, and his parents both lived to be over fourscore and four years. His life has been a busy one, and he deserves the prosperity and comfort which he enjoys in his declining years.

Pages 1119-1120, “Portrait and Biographical Record of Rockland and Orange Counties New York,” published by Chapman Publishing Co., New York and Chicago, 1895.

[William is SGS # 3515 – William Merrill; Ira, John; John; Samuel; Jonas; Obadiah]

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