History of Bradford County, Pennsylvania with Biographical Sketches
By H. C. Bradsby, 1891
If You Have Photos of People Mentioned on the Page, Send Them In For Inclusion
History of Bradford County 725
himself by teaching the Beecher school in Pike Township, when but eighteen years of age. He taught six years, and then spent about one year in the West, where he was engaged in mercantile business; then followed the grocery business in LeRaysville, two years after which he was employed by George Bailey, two years in the mercantile business. In January, 1887, he purchased the LeRaysville Advertiser, and later admitted F. M. Wheaton as partner. On January, 30, 1884, Mr. Codding married Helen, daughter of George S. and Lucy (Corbin) Gorham, who were among the early settlers in Warren township. Mrs. Codding is a member of the Congregational Church. Mr. Codding in his political views is a Republican.
COLONEL JOHN A. CODDING, Towanda. Every old and long established community, by an unwritten law of selection, tends toward the process of sitting out and placing at the fore some recognized common leader in our social and business life. These chosen men lead, not by virtue generally of any written law, but mostly by that instinct of cohesion and dependence upon superiors that is an under-current in every social life, and in all communities. In the rude and wild tribes these leaders are their fighters, and the degrees of civilization are measured by the domination of mind, and to this advance in time comes that yet higher type of "mentor and friend" who combines integrity of character with broadening of intellect. The appositeness of these reflections, linked to the gentleman’s name that heads this sketch, will be apparent by the briefest recital of the public and private positions of honor and trust that the good will of his old neighbors and friends have put upon Col. Codding through a continuous generation of years. Forty years ago he was a humble mechanic, and an occasional short winter-term school teacher, and was in 1853 constructing canal locks, railroad bridges, stone and brick buildings, and plastering houses and, though by nature retiring and negative, yet his neighbors found him out, and from a private adviser and friend they promoted him, by their spontaneous will, from the trowel and the hammer to high sheriff of the county, in which he served from 1854 until 1857, and was then made deputy-sheriff, and was in the position three years from 1857 to 1860. In 1862 he filled, by appointment of Gov. Curtin (who had already sent him, unsolicited, a full captain’s commission), the difficult and responsible office of commissioner of the draft, and he performed its every duty with eminence and fidelity. A short parenthesis just here is necessary: When the war came Col. Codding was by far the leading military character of the county. He had vast experience and varied service in the old State militia, a strong military organization in peace times. He has served for years as Brigade Inspector, the district then being composed of five counties, and in this service had passed the grades of captain, major, lieutenant-colonel to Brigade Inspector, a most responsible position, with sufficient salary to command his undivided time and attention. He thus served until the old military organization of the State was changed in 1845, and at the breaking out of war the Governor looked naturally to him as the one man of military affairs in Bradford, and was ready to give him any position he might prefer. He began organizing and drilling a company, and soon this grew so large that it was divided into two companies, and it fell to the second company to go en masse into the service, while Col. Codding continued to raise and drill men and forward them to the front. In this way he rendered his country invaluable service.
In 1880 the Colonel was made clerk to the prothonotary of Bradford county, and served to the satisfaction of the entire community, for years; in 1880 he was made a magistrate, has filled the office continuously since, and was again elected for five years, from May, 1891, where perhaps, as mutual friend of neighbors, hot and eager for legal frays, he has rendered more valuable services to a greater number of people than has probably any other man ever in the county. IN 1876 he became president of the Eureka Mower Company, Towanda, and his clear judgment and quick perceptions were of the highest measure to that concern. In 1854 he was the close friend of Hon David Wilmot and Judge Mercur, in founding in this State the Republican party, where, as everywhere, his advice was clear cut, carrying much weight, and he was a real factor in swinging the great Commonwealth into line where a Lincoln was to lead and a Grant to command.
The social side of this man’s life is not so easily written, but it is in the hearts of the many whom has befriended in the hour of trial and great need, attested joyfully by all in open glad acts at every opportunity. He has now reached that age, but hat is all, when the average man would begin to retire from active life. Born in Dutchell County, N. Y., July 6, 1819, of David and Susannah (Wood) Codding, the son of an honest mechanic and himself successfully passed the degrees of the mechanic’s craft, from the humblest to the highest. His father’s family came to Bradford County in 1823, locating in Pike Township, and in time the father taught school and became a distinguished minister of the protestant Methodist Church; he died in August 1874. His family numbered six children, of whom John A. was the fourth in the order of birth. He now looks back with no inconsiderable pride upon some of the substantial buildings in the county and in Elmira, N. Y., that are yet evidences of his skilled hand, when he was a young mechanic on the threshold of his long, useful and honorable life. In November, 1847, John A. Codding and Perciller L. Hodge were joined in the bonds of wedlock at her home in LeRaysville; she was a daughter of Rev James and Rebecca (Miller) Hodge, natives of Pennsylvania. Of this union there were four children, as follows: James H. Codding, John W. Codding, Dr. Charles L. Codding, of Duluth, and Mary (Mrs. Alexander H. Davis). Mrs. Codding departed this life February 4, 1888.
Dr. Charles L. Codding was born in the court-house in Towanda while his father was sheriff; and is a distinguished physician of Duluth, Minn. Mrs. Mary (Codding) Davis is a resident of Duluth, Minn. Two of this family of children have gone out from the roof-tree, bearing in their hearts the admonitions of their childhood home, and two are here in their native place, while all have so deported themselves as to advance along that higher plane of life that comes of the wise and gentle ministrations imparted to them in their tender childhood, honoring a parent that has honored them by their employer and upright lives – all of them have inherited well that shield that would turn as wholly harmless every shaft of envy or detraction that might be cast at them. Mr. Codding has been a consistent and prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church during the past thirty years, much of the time serving as class leader, and has been secretary and treasurer of the church fifteen years. During thirteen years he was judge of elections; for many terms was a member and president of the school board, and was largely instrumental, while in that body, in the building of the elegant school-house in 1873. He is a Royal Arch Mason. He was appointed census enumerator in 1880, and performed the duties of that office completely, and to the entire satisfaction of his official superiors.
JAMES H. CODDING, a leading member of the Bradford county bar, was born in Pike township, this county, July 8, 1849, and is the eldest son and child of John A. and Perciller (Hodge) Codding. He was reared in Towanda from five years of age, and educated at Susquehanna Collegiate Institute, Towanda, and Dartmouth College. From 1868 to 1876, he was engaged in the hardware business in Towanda with Codding & Russell. After that he studied law with Henry Streeter, Esq., was admitted to the bar in February, 1879, and has been in active practice of his profession since. On September 15, 1870, he married Blanch, daughter of Theodore and Martha (Clark) Wells, of Muncy, Pa., and has one son, Arthur. In 1890 Mr. Codding was the Republican candidate for president judge for the Thirteenth Judicial District of Pennsylvania, but was defeated in election by the Independent Republican fusion with the Democrats; politically he has always been a staunch Republican, and never, even in the bitterest political campaign ever witnessed in the county, was he personally assailed, and no man in the county to-day stands fairer in name and fame among his neighbors of all classes.
JOHN W. CODDING, district attorney, Towanda, was born in Pike
Township, this county, June 10, 1854, and is a son of John A. and Perciller
L. (Hodge) Codding. He was reared in Towanda, and was educated at Lafayette
College, where he was graduated in 1877; the same year he began the study
of law in the office of Overton & Mercur, Towanda, and was admitted
to the bar September 5, 1879, and has since been in active practice as
a member of the law firm of James H. & John W. Codding. He was married
November 12, 1890, to Anne E., daughter of Maj. Elias W. and Mary J. (Taylor)
hale, of Towanda. He is a member of the Episcopal Church, Towanda, and
has been chairman of the Bradford County Republican Committee three years,
1886-1887-1888 was elected district attorney of Bradford County in 1889,
and has discharged the high office with marked fidelity and ability. Mr.
Codding has been a Republican, ever staunch in his politics, and true and
trusted in his friendship, and is accounted one of the strong and leading
attorneys of Bradford County.
Bela Cogswell photo sent in by Carol HOOSE Brotzman
|BELA COGSWELL, retired Free Will Baptist minister, Silvara, was born in Tuscarora Township, this county, January 10, 1817. The Cogswell family was among the earliest settlers of Tuscarora, and has always been prominent in the history of their section. The progenitor of the family, in America, was John Cogswell, born in Westbury, England, in 1592, who sailed May 23, 1635, on the ship "Angel," to American, and was wrecked off the coast of Pemaquid, but, together with his wife and four sons and five daughters, was washed ashore, August 15, same year, all escaping death. From this man the subject of this sketch is descended as follows: John, William, William, Edward, Samuel, Edward, Edward, Elisha, Elisha, Bela, subject, being of the ninth generation from John Edward.|
CHARLES C. COLE, locomotive engineer, Sayre, is a native of Elmira, N. Y., born January 15, 1851, only child of Charles and Gertrude (Hazen) Cole, natives of New Jersey; the former served as postmaster at Elmira, and died in Buffalo, N. Y., in 1854; the latter died in 1851. Charles C. Cole, after the death of his father, was taken from Elmira to Danbury, Tompkins Co., N. Y., to the home of his uncle, with whom he lived until he grew up. In 1877 he went to Ithaca, N. Y., and ran a stationary engine for Trieman & King, and Williams Bros., seven years, and was then employed as a brakeman on the G. I. & S. R. R., and after being four years with the employ, he began firing, and was promoted to engineer September 2, 1890. He was married in Brookton, N. Y., January 12, 1877. Mr. Cole was married, the second time, in Newark Valley, January 18, 1887, to Miss Lucy Travis, whose parents are natives of this county; her father was a farmer in early life, but is now employed in the machine shops in Sayre; her mother died in July, 1884, in her sixty-fourth year. Mrs. Cole was born in Burlingotn Township, this county. April 29, 1864 and is the youngest in a family of eleven children. Mr. Cole is a member of the Sexennial League, and Peoples Benefit Association, and in politics is a Republican.
C. H. COLE, M.D., Sheshequin, was born in Kingston, Ulster Co., N. Y., April 4, 1818, and is a son of John and Catherine (Letts) Cole, natives of the same place, the latter of whom was at the Wyoming massacre, being a child at that time; her father fled with his family, and being closely pursued by savages swam the river with three children clinging to his clothing, and she was one of the three, he escaped with his children and fled through the wilderness to the Hudson river, subsisting on roots and berries, which they could gather in the woods. John Cole died in Geneva, N. Y., in 1849, aged eighty-five; his wife had died in 1846 at the age of seventy-five. He was a soldier of the Revolution, was at the Battle of Kingston, and saw the village burned by the British; the mother was also present at the event, and stood on Hurley Mountain and watched the flames consume her childhood home. Though but a lad, he carried a musket and stood at his post with the best soldiers of the Continental Army. In the family there were eleven children, two of whom survive – one daughter and his self. She married Stephen Newell, and is now a widow. Dr. Cole’s early life was spent on a farm, and he received his early education in the public schools of New York. His professional education was received at the Geneva Medical College, where he was graduated in 1848; while reading medicine he taught a considerable time. He began practice in Barton, N. Y., and then went to Tioga County, Pa.; in 1854 he moved to McHenry County, Ill., and engaged in the practice of medicine there four years and then came to Sheshequin, where he has since made his home. On December 2, 1862, he enlisted in the army; was examined in a class of 298 seeking commissions, and received his commission as assistant-surgeon; fifteen days later he was promoted to surgeon of the One Hundred and Seventy-second Regiment P. V. I., with rank of major; was with the Army of the Potomac, and was mustered out August 1, 1863, and he was a pensioner, drawing $30 a month. In 1837 he was married to Sylvan, daughter of Aaron Waller, of New Hampshire, and there were born to this marriage two children: Caroline married to Dennis Porter, who was accidentally killed in 1888, and William Henry, a physician in Henry county, Ill. The mother of these children dying, the Doctor married, June 15, 1859, Hannah Horton, daughter of David and Hannah (Newell) Horton, and by this marriage there is one child, John Franklin. Hayden S. Cole, grandson of Dr. C. H. Cole, is a graduate of West Point, and is at the present time located at St. Paul, Minn. Dr. Cole is a Democrat, and has been for years the leading physician of this section of the country.
DAVID W. COLE, dealer in coal, wagons, lumber, shingles, etc.,
Wysox, was born August 14, 1829, in what is now Asylum (then Wysox) township,
this county, and is a son of Solomon (who was a son of Solomon) and Sarah
(Tyron) Cole, natives of Bradford County; the father died in 1876, aged
eighty-four. Grandfather Cole, who was one of the earliest pioneers in
the county, settled in what is now Asylum Township, and took up a large
and valuable tract of land. He reared a large family. He was a farmer who,
while laboring afield, axe in hand, measuring his strength against the
dark old forests, found time to read medicine and theology, and, in company
with his brother, Dr. Daniel Cole, who was one of the most prominent physicians
of the county in his day, fed and cured men’s bodies and saved souls. David
W. Cole, who is the second in a family of six children, who grew to their
maturity, was reared in his native place, receiving his early education
at the neighborhood schools of his day. He became a farmer for a short
time; but, impelled by a something that had mixed with his boyish dreams,
he gathered his little bundle, joined those who go down to the sea in ships,
and was soon found before the mast upon the salt waters. During the latter
part of this time he was sailing on the lakes, on the "J. C. Anthony,"
a vessel of his own building, which he controlled six years. When the Civil
War broke out he went to the Southern waters, in Government employ, with
the blockading fleets, and had charge of Government vessels, serving during
the entire war; and while not a regular enlisted soldier, he had often
stood picket guard over Government supplies, and as a sentinel to warn
against an approaching enemy. He left the water in 1878 and returned to
his old Wysox home, a common "land lubber" once more, and removed to his
present home in 1884. On June 22, 1853, Mr. Cole was united in marriage
with Catherine, daughter of Amos Sigler, of Geneva, N. Y., and of English
descent. Of this union there is one child, Nellie (Mrs. Henry B. Wilson).
Mrs. Cole is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Cole was made
a Freemason at Madison Episcopal Church and a Chapter member at Syracuse.
In politics he is a Republican, and has often been a delegate to important
county conventions of the Republican Party.
|J. H. COLE, physician. Gillett, was born in Binghamton, N. Y., October 24, 1817, a son of Benjamin and Abigail (Fanning) Cole, the former a native of Rhode Island. About the year 1820, Benjamin Cole came to this county from Binghamton with his wife and four children, the journey being made by horse and wagon, and located in Leona, Springfield township, where he purchased two hundred acres of wild land which he cleared. His life was that of a pioneer, surrounded by all the usual hardships; his house was of logs and bark, and like all other early settlers much of his fare was obtained in the woods and streams. During this time there were born to him four more children, making a family of eight, five of whom grew to maturity, four now living. Dr. Cole, who is the third in the family, was reared and educated in Springfield, and early showing a preference for the medical profession, began the study under Dr. W. Hopkins, of Wellsburg, N. Y.; then attended the Washington Medical College, in Baltimore, Md., two terms (1839-40); subsequently attended one term at the Buffalo Medical College, from which he was graduated in 1854.|
|The Doctor’s first practice was at Bentley Creek, this county, where
he remained two years, and then removed to Wells Township, where he practiced
with success twenty-five years, after which he came to Gillett where he
now resides. On July 13, 1843, Dr. Cole married at Wells, this county,
Catherine, daughter of Geheil and Emily Ayres, and there were born to them
three children, two of whom, Dorleskie and Inez, grew to maturity, but
are now deceased. The Doctor has held the office of postmaster in Wells
Township, seven years, and was also town clerk, showing the confidence
reposed in him by his fellow citizens. He practices according to the regular
school of medicine.
Photos of J. Howard Cole and wife Katherine Ayers added 06 March 2008
Mrs. Cole died May 1, 1864, mourned by al who knew her, and August 27, 1864, Mr. Cole married Martha A. Watson, who was born September 9, 1844, daughter of Jairus and Rebecca (VanLoon) Watson, of New Albany, this county, and there is one child, Alice G., born December 9, 1865, wife of George G. Stevens. Mr. Cole is a Republican, and has been school director many years; he has never taken an active interest in politics, but has attended closely to his farming interests. He owns about two hundred and sixty acres of land, and has been an extensive grower of small fruits, together with general farming; he has a crop of grapes every year of the past sixty years, and has had one of the finest peach orchards in the county.
WILLIAM WALTER COLE, farmer, Minnequa, is a native of Minnequa, Canton Township, this county, and was born April 30, 1840, a son of D. R. and Mahitabel (Robert) Cole, natives of Philadelphia and Canton, respectively. His father was born in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1812, and was reared there until seventeen years of age, when he came to Canton Township; he learned the whip-maker’s trade in Philadelphia; from 1833 until 1839 he had a boot and shoe shop, after which he followed farming; he died March 29, 1890. Mrs. Cole was born in 1816, and died in 1882. Our subject’s grandfather, John Joslin Cole, was a native of Connecticut and went to Philadelphia when a young man; he was engaged in mercantile business there for some time, then went West , but returned to Canton township, where he died in the spring of 1865. His great-grandfather, Washington Cole, was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, and lived in New York State several years, where he died. William Walter Cole, who is the fourth in the order of birth in a family of eight sons, was reared in Canton Township, receiving his education in the select schools of Canton, and taught three terms. At the breaking out of the Civil War, responding to his country’s call, he enlisted August 24, 1861, in Company F, Eleventh P.V.C. (for three years’ service), formerly Harlem’s Light Cavalry. He was in active service and served under Gens. Cautz, Sheridan and Wilson, and was mustered out at Jone’s Neck Landing, August 24, 1864. Returning home he re-enlisted, February 20, 1865, this time in the Government Construction Corps, and served until the close of the war. Since his return home Mr. Cole has followed farming, having purchased the feed-mill he now owns, in the fall of 1873, and built a sawmill in addition to it in 1875, that was run about three years. He was married in Canton, December 25, 1868, to Nettie A., daughter of Andrew and Mariette (Ruggles) Richards, natives of Vermont; her father was a mechanic, and died in Lisle, Broome Co., N. Y., in 1848; her mother married, for her second husband, Solomon Morse, and resides in East Troy. Mrs. Cole is the eldest in order of birth in a family of three children; she was born in Broome County, N. Y., April 13, 1842. To Mr. and Mrs. Cole have been born nine children, as follows: Ezbon Walter, Ferris Edward, Andrew G., Charles R., David R., Asa G., Nettie E., Lavantia and Lavernia (twins). The family are members of the Christian Church. Mr. Cole is a member of Keystone Grange; politically he is a Republican, and has served one term each as constable and school director.
Henry H. COLEMAN, farmer and stock raiser, Orwell, was born in Pike Township, this county, in September, 1856. His father, Russell Coleman, was also born in Pike Township, March 15, 1823, and his grandfather, Reuben Coleman, a native of Connecticut, came in early life to this county where he engaged in farming. Russel Coleman began life on a farm when quite young. He purchased, from the heirs of the estate, fifty acres, which with the fifty acres he inherited from his father made a total of 100 acres. In 1883 he retired and has since lived in LeRaysville. He married Harriet, daughter of Henry and Annie (Brown) Goodell, and they have had six children, viz.: Ransford, Annie (wife of Martin Sammon), Russell (died in infancy), Henry H. Emma (wife of Charles Shales) and Joseph H. Mrs. Russell Coleman died March 6, 1868. Henry H. Coleman attended the common schools until his twentieth year, when he began farming. In 1889 he purchased his present improved farm of 134 acres, the house on which was built in 1870; in 1890 he reconstructed and enlarged the barn. Mr. Coleman married, in 1876, Alice H., daughter of George C. and Henrietta (Taylor) Atwood, the third of a family of fourteen children, eleven of whom are living. Mr. Coleman is secretary and a charter member of LeRaysville Lodge of the Farmers Alliance. He is a member of the Independent party. The family are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mrs. Coleman’s great-grandfather served in the Revolutionary Army. Mr. Coleman had an uncle, Orrin Coleman, who served in the War of the Rebellion and lost two fingers.
LEROY COLEMAN, merchant, LeRaysville, was born September 29, 1848, in Pike township, this county, a son of Joseph and Irene (Buttles) Coleman; the former, a farmer, was a native of Pennsylvania and of New England origin, and the latter was of Massachusetts and of Welsh descent. Their family consisted of six children, of whom Leroy is the eldest; the only other living member of the family is Madison J. Coleman, who is engaged in mining and stock dealing in Pueblo, Col. Leroy Coleman began life at the age of twenty-two years, teaching school; he taught two years and, after one year, engaged with J. J. Gorham in the hardware business in LeRaysville. In 1886 they admitted A. E. Woodruff as third partner, thus forming the popular firm of Gorham, Coleman & Woodruff. Leroy Coleman was married July 28, 1872, to Miss Huldah, the fifth in the family of eleven children of Charles and Amanda (Denton) Reynolds, who came to Pennsylvania from New York in 1845. Of nine children in family who reached maturity, eight were school teachers. Mr. and Mrs. Coleman have no children; they are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church of which he has been trustee several terms; in politics he is a Republican, and has been councilman and burgess several years. Mrs. Irene Coleman is the mother of LeRoy Coleman, with whom she lives, at the age of sixty-one years; her father, Jonathan Buttles, came from Massachusetts and settled in Orwell in 1835; in his family were eight children, of whom Mrs. Coleman is the eldest.
TIMOTHY COLLINS, farmer, P.O. Overton, is one of the leading farmers of the neighborhood in which he has long made his home, and was born in County Cork, Ireland, in 1826, a son of Daniel and Jennie (Dailey) Collins, natives of the same place. Daniel Collins died in 1852 and his widow in 1862. Timothy, who was the eldest in a family of five children, grew to manhood in his father’s family in his native place; he came to America in 1851, located in Overton, and commenced the Herculean task of cutting down the giant trees of the forest, and clearing a farm in the gloomy woods. A poor boy, with no exterior aid, cleaving his own way in life against odds that, to the ordinary young man, would be most appalling. But the results of his incessant labors are his present comfortable homestead of 100 acres, under a high state of cultivation. Mr. Collins was united in marriage in Wyoming county with Ellen, daughter of Michael and Mary (Cuney) Curran, natives of Ireland, and of this union there are four children, as follows: Jennie (wife of W. P. Kelley), Mary E., Daniel J. and Michael J. The male members of the family are of the Democratic persuasion in politics, and all the family are exemplary members of the Mother Church. The Collins home is one of the comfortable farm houses of Bradford county, where their friends and visitors come by the hundreds.
COLONY BROTHERS (Charles E. and Thomas), manufacturers of lumber, lath and shingles, Sylvania, are natives of Troy, this county, and sons of Charles and Julia (Ferguson) Colony, who located in Wells township, this county, in 1841, and in Troy in 1851. The father, who was a mill-wright and bridge-builder by occupation, built a large number of bridges in various parts of the country. In 1861 he removed to Austinville, where he died in 1864. He was a native of Bainbridge, Chenango Co., N.Y.; reared a family of four children: William, Charles E., Augusta (Mrs. John F. Hunt) and Thomas. Charles E. and Thomas were reared in Bradford county, and located in Sylvania in 1881, where they have since been engaged in lumbering, operating the mills formerly owned by H. & P. Peck. They turn out over 6,000,000 feet of lumber annually, operate a planning mill in connection, and give employment to from nine to forty men in busy seasons of the year. Charles E. is a member of the Masonic Fraternity, and, political, both are Republicans.
DR. SAMUEL FISHER COLT, Wysox, minister of the Presbyterian Church, and president of the Bradford County Medical Society, is a native of New Jersey, born at Paterson, April 19, 1817, and is the son of Samuel and Phoebe Colt, latter of whom was a daughter of Nathaniel Andrus, who was a descendant of Governor Andrus, of Connecticut, a family of English stock. Both grandfathers served honorably through the Revolutionary War. The father was a merchant and iron manufacturer, noted in his day and time as pre-eminent, in respect to both his business qualities and his superior mechanical genius, that made him an advanced leader of his time; he was a captain in the War of 1812, and raised his own company; and was a ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church; he died in 1825. His family consisted of four sons and one daughter, of whom Samuel F. is the youngest and only survivor. He was reared mainly in Newark, N.J., where he read medicine in the office of Dr. J. G. Goble (a classmate at Princeton of Washington Irving). He then entered the regular classical curriculum at LaFayette College in the class of 1837;