Before My Time is about the ancestry and extended family of my four grandparents: John Samuel Krentz (Indiana/North Dakota), Margreta Tjode Hedwig (Gertie) Buss (North Dakota), Rosmer Pettis Kerr (Pennsylvania/Michigan), and Evelyn Elvina Hauer (Michigan), and other topics in genealogy and family history.

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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Eugene Bouton and His Papers

The Eugene Bouton Papers are a great source of information for people with roots in Jefferson, Schoharie County, New York. My Efner and Martin ancestors are among those families researched by Dr. Bouton.

Because I question some of the details from Dr. Bouton's Martin file, I became curious about the man. Who was he? What was his interest in these families? Where did he get his information? And how could I get my hands on a copy of his Efner file?

I was able to learn quite a bit about Dr. Bouton online, and in this post, I will hook you up with links which answer these questions and more. Let's start out with a short biography published when he was forty years old:
Eugene Bouton, A.M., Ph.D , was born at Jefferson, Schoharie Co., N. Y., Dec. 6, 1850. His primary and intermediate education was received in the public schools of Jefferson, and his preparation for college was obtained chiefly at Cazenovia Seminary, Cazenovia, N. Y., where he secured numerous prizes for proficiency in his several studies. After a course at Yale College, in which he excelled especially in composition and oratory, he was graduated in 1875, being the class poet, and having received during the course, several honors of a similar character.

After teaching for two years at the Norwich Academy, Norwich, N. Y., and then for three years at Sherburne, N. Y., as principal of the union school, he was elected Professor of the English Language and Literature in the Albany Academy at Albany, N. Y, which position he retained for three and a half years. In the spring of 1881 he was elected Professor of History and English Literature in the College of Charleston at Charleston, S. C, but decided to remain at Albany. After studying poetry under Prof. H A. Beers, he received the degree of M.A. from Yale College, in 1881. During the summer of 1881 he traveled in Great Britain and France, for the pupose of obtaining information concerning his favorite studies, and in 1882 he received the degree of Ph.D. from Syracuse University, on an examination in English Literature.

On the first of January, 1884, he was appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction a member of the Institute Faculty of the State of New York, and served thereon two years, until he was appointed Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction, in January, 1886, and shortly afterwards Principal of the State Normal and Training School at New Paltz, Ulster Co., N. Y.

During the autumn of 1884, he published, in connection with Prof. James Johonnot, a work on elementary physiology and hygiene, entitled "How We Live ; or the Human Body, and How to take Care of It." D. Appleton & Co., New York. He has also published various papers on educational and other topics.

June 29, 1887, he married Elizabeth Rumrill Gladwin, b. Sherburne, N. Y., Oct. 9,1865, daughter of Albert R. Gladwin, Esq., of Sherburne, Chenango Co., N. Y.

Boughton, James, and Willis A. Boughton. Bouton--Boughton Family; Descendants of John Boution, a Native of France, Who Embarked from Gravesend, Eng., and Landed at Boston in December, 1635, and Settled at Norwalk, Ct. Albany: J. Munsell's Sons, 1890.

In July 1947, Dr. Bouton received a letter from Yale University informing him that, at the age of 96, he was Yale's oldest living graduate. Two newspaper clippings with additional biographical information were published at that time; transcriptions are online at Schoharie County NYGenWeb. He died after a brief illness on March 31, 1951, at the age of 100 [The New York Times, Sunday, 1 April 1951, p. 93].

Next you'll want to read the text of Dr. Boughton's brochure which he sent out in the mid-1900s to spread word of his project to collect information about the families living in the Town of Jefferson, Schoharie County, New York from its settlement in 1794 through the mid-1900s.

The Schoharie County NYGenWeb Site also has a very helpful page about the Bouton Papers and how to obtain files from the collection.

The actual Bouton Papers are housed at the New York State Library. However, the index to the Bouton Papers is reproduced at Schoharie County NYGenWeb, where some of the files have been transcribed and are available online (active links provided).

I obtained my Efner file pages by mail from the Old Stone Fort Library at Schoharie, New York. This library's excellent website enables detailed planning of a research trip I'd love to take!

Update: I'd like to thank reader Terry Bradshaw for contacting me with this information: "The bio of Bouton you quote contains an error. His college prep was done at the Stamford Seminary in Stamford, New York."

1 comment:

Greg Smith said...
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Blog Archive


Our Family in Books: A Bibliography

  • My Ancestors in Books (a library of resources and notes pertaining to Reverend Samuel Stone, Major General Robert Sedgwick, Elder John Crandall, and other early Americans in the forest where my family tree was grown)
  • The Zahnisers: A History of the Family in America by Kate M. Zahniser and Charles Reed Zahniser (Mercer, Pa. 1906)
  • History of St. James Lutheran Church [full title: A little of this and a little of that in the 141 year (1861-2002) History of St. James Lutheran Church, Reynolds Indiana] by Harold B. Dodge, published at Reynolds, Indiana, 2002; 170 pages.
  • Lisbon, North Dakota 1880-2005 Quasuicentennial, published at Lisbon, North Dakota in 2005; 391 pages.
  • The Paschen and Redd Families of Cass County, Indiana by Alfred Paschen, c. 2005 (Gateway Press, Inc., Baltimore, MD); 322 pages.
  • Sheldon Community History: Sheldon Centennial 1881-1981, published at Sheldon, North Dakota in 1981; 376 pages.
  • Sheldon, North Dakota 1881-2006 - 125th Anniversary: The Queen of the Prairie, published at Sheldon, North Dakota in 2006; 498 pages.
  • A Standard History of White County, Indiana, written under the supervision of W.H. Hamelle, c. 1915 (The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago and New York).
  • The Roots of Coventry, Connecticut by Betty Brook Messier and Janet Sutherland Aronson, c. 1987 (Coventry 275th Anniversary Committee, Coventry, CT); 206 pages.
  • "Elder John Crandall of Rhode Island and His Descendants" by John Cortland Crandall; New Woodstock, New York, 1949; 797 pages.
  • "The Descendants of Robert Burdick of Rhode Island." Nellie (Willard) Johnson, Pd.B.: H & L Creations, LLC.

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