Family Information

from the book

Russia Union Church, 110th Anniversary, 1820-1930

The family profiles below come from the small book "Russia Union Church, 110th Anniversary, 1820 - 1930." Jane Dieffenbacher, Fairfield Town Historian, will be transcribing the family profiles from the second half of this rare book over the course of the summer. The small Town of Russia is on the western half of Herkimer County and borders the Towns of Deerfield, Trenton and Remson in neighboring Oneida County and the Towns of Ohio, Newport and Norway within Herkimer County.

In the middle of the book is this notation. "The foregoing pages constitute the history of the Russia Union Church as far as can be ascertained. The history of some of the families connected with it have been compiled. Time and space will not permit to complete the family sketches in this booklet. To those who have graciously furnished material in any way we are grateful. Printed books, family Bibles, written records, documents, letters, papers and clippings have been used as sources of information by the author, Rev. Roger F. Williams."



Joseph Pooler was born February 28, 1781; married November 21, 1802, Violetta Walters, born March 14, 1784, died February 24, 1861, the daughter of John and Priscilla (Rathbone) Walters. Joseph Pooler removed from Stillwater, Saratoga County, New York, to Russia, New York. They were farmers and members of the Baptist Church. Joseph and Violetta (Walters) Pooler had children:

  1. Esther, born September 2, 1803, died April 9, 1831.
  2. Mercy W., born April 19, 1806, died April 22, 1888. She was married, first, November 17, 1825, to Joseph Newberry, son of Elisha, born May 13, 1800, died May 27, 1835; second, February 8, 1844, to Peter Newman, born November 23, 1790, died April 14, 1876, the son of Peter and Sarah Newman. The children of Joseph and Mercy W. (Pooler) Newberry were: (1) Samuel James, born March 7, 1827, died April 17, 1828, (2) Joseph Pooler, born July 12, 1829, died July 30, 1863. (3) Mary Jane, born June 15, 1833, died July 29, 1866. She married Peter Newman, Jr.
  3. Nathaniel Pooler, born April; 18, 1808, died January 28, 1870; married, first, October 28, 1829, Olive Carpenter, who died June 27, 1831; second, February 8, 1833, Mary Delong, born March 14, 1814, died February 7, 1878. Nathaniel Pooler had children. By first wife:

    1. John Pooler, born January 11, 1831, died _______.

      By second wife:

    2. Olive Jane, born March 29, 1835, died March 25, 1839.
    3. Laura Ann, born January 24, 1837; married January 24, 1858, Peter A. Cramer.
    4. Violetta C., born March 1, 1840. Married Joseph L. Snell.
    5. Mary, born May 18, 1849; married March 25, 1868, George Laraway.
    6. Henry, born September 24, 1852.

  4. Hannah, born May 23, 1810, died March 23, 1879; married George Adams. Resided Ohio, New York.
  5. Gaylord, born January 28, 1812. Married Mary Ann Wood.
  6. Sally W., born June 8, 1814, died March 10, 1831.
  7. Joseph, born March 22, 1816, died April 30, 1818.
  8. Priscilla Jane, born May 7, 1818, died October 25, 1832.
  9. John, born August 25, 1823, died March 6, 1891. He married Aurinda Barker. They settled in Russia. First they were Baptists and then staunch Methodists. He was one of the most prominent champions of the anti-slavery movement and temperance reform in the town of Russia.


Calvin Preston was born Apr. 11, 1765, in Ashford, Windham County, Conn., the son of John and Mary (Ford) Preston. Married, May 20, 1790, at Ashford, Conn., by Samuel Thompson, Justice of the Peace, Rachel Rice, born July 23, 1766; died Jan. 3, 1858, in Deerfield, N.Y. At the age of 15, in June, 1780, Calvin Preston entered the service of the American Revolutionary Army as a substitute for his father, John Preston, who had been drafted for three months. Calvin Preston at this time served as a guard at New London. At Ashford, Conn., in the spring of 1781 he enlisted for revolutionary service under Capt. Bottom and Lieut. Knowlton in Colonel Wells regiment. He was on guard at Horseneck and was scouting for nine months. In the spring of 1782 he enlisted for one year and was in Col. Canfield's regiment and served as a guard at Horseneck and was a scout. For these services he applied for a pension Feb. 28, 1833. It was granted. Rev. William Goodell and Lewis Reed, a farmer, both of Deerfield, substantiated the evidence given by Calvin Preston. After the war Calvin Preston moved from Ashford, Conn., to Salem, N.Y., thence to Russia, then called Norway, and to Deerfield. About 1810 with his son Phillip they built a log house from the forest on their farm which they cleared. First in the Russia Presbyterian Church and then in North Gage Presbyterian for about thirty years he served the two churches as Deacon. He died Nov. 29, 1849 in Deerfield, N.Y. He acted the part of a patriotic soldier for his country. When the strife was over he lived a good citizen and Christian. Calvin and Rachel (Rice) Preston had children:

  1. Sophia, born May 13, 1791; married Dec. 30, 1810, Eli Watson. Their children were Eli P., William, Charles, Mary.
  2. Silas, born May 16, 1793; married April, 1819, ____ ____. His children were John, Rachel, Lucy, Harriett.
  3. Clarissa, born Apr. 14, 1795; married Sept. 19, 1816, Jacob Forbes. Their children were Rachel, Chauncey, Angeline, George, Harriett, Sophia, Silas, Charles, John, Harriett.
  4. Philip, born Mar. 10, 1797; married Feb. 13, 1823, Bershe King. Resided Deerfield. Their children were John C., James K., Benjamin, Sally Ann, Charles B., Jane, Rachel, Maryetta.
  5. Calvin, Jr., born Feb. 2, 1799; married Sept. 17, 1827, Margaret McAlister. During 1824 and 1825 he attended the Fairfield Medical School, Fairfield, N.Y. Their children were Charles F., James, William, Sophia, Calvin, Maria.
  6. Susan, born Dec. 19, 1801; married Sept. 14, 1820, Nathan Goodell, born Apr. 18, 1797; died Feb. 7, 1880, at New Lisbon, Wis. He was the son of William and Phebe (Newton) Goodell of Marlboro, Mass. Nathan Goodell had a brother, Rev. William Goodell, pastor of the North Gage and Russia Presbyterian Churches, and the first American missionary to Turkey, where he spent forty years. The children of Nathan and Susan (Preston) Goodell were: Prescott W., Abigail D., Carlop Rosea, William P., Mary J., Cornelia T., Harriett N.
  7. Polly, born Aug. 9, 1803; never married.
  8. Sabrina, born Nov. 12, 1804; married Sept. 23, 1833, John Bigelow. Their residence was Schenectady, N.Y.
  9. Syrena, born Nov. 12, 1804; married Sept. 19, 1826, George Ellingwood. Their children were Truman J., Permelia.
  10. John R., born Feb.18, 1809; died 1895. Married Oct. 19, 1841, Cornelia E. Dibble. He was a physician in active practice over 50 years. He lived in Schuylerville, Saratoga County, N.Y., over 64 years. He had two children, Harriett and an infant.


Joseph Prindle was born March 7, 1771, the son of Moses and Christian Prindle; married November 15, 1795, Elizabeth Joy, born April 10, 1776, died April, 1864. They were Baptists in Russia. He died August 13, 1861. Joseph and Elizabeth (Joy) Prindle had children:

  1. Harriett, born November 24, 1796; married June 24, 1815, Zalmon Pool of Theresa, New York.
  2. Truman, born June 18, 1798; married January 7, 1821, Lucy Shepard, died June 22, 1841. Resided Lewis County, New York. Their daughter Lucy is now nearing 90. She is the last of her generation.
  3. John, born April 5, 1800; married September 22, 1824, Renewed Moon. Resided Russia.
  4. Moses, born May 12, 1802, died May 23, 1802.
  5. Gaylord, born July 5, 1803, died June 18, 1811.
  6. Graham, born August 16, 1805, died February 16, 1865. Married January 1, 1835, Julia Ann Newman.
  7. Charles J., born May 22, 1810; married, February 10, 1834, Clarissa Smith. He died September 21, 1881.
  8. Elizabeth, born May 22, 1810, died November 16, 1893; married, February 12, 1833, Loren Pardee.
  9. Clarissa, born July 15, 1814; married December 8, 1831, Erastus Wright. She died April 4, 1839. Resided Clayton, New York.
  10. Sophia, born October 13, 1817; married October 12, 1841, John G. Worsley, Antwerp, New York.


Stephen and Zilpha Russell resided in Dartmouth, Mass. They had eleven children of whom one was John Russell, born March 22, 1771, in Dartmouth, Mass. Married by Israel Jones, Esq., May 10, 1800, in Adams, Berkshire County, Mass., Sarah Slocum, the daughter of Ebenezer Slocum. She was born March 9, 1781, died February 10, 1866. They settled in Russia. The children of John and Sarah (Slocum) Russell were:

  1. Lovina, born February 26, 1803; married William Fahey. These are the grandparents of Clarence Fahey.
  2. Angelina, born November 4, 1805; married William Robens, born June, 1804, died April 21, 1855.
  3. Edith S., born September 1, 1810; married Sylvanus Wentworth. She died May 22, 1848, and left two children.
  4. John I. Russell, born July 29, 1814, died September 5, 1814.
  5. Amy Caroline, born January 25, 1819; married Erastus Read.
  6. Giles Alonzo, born September 30, 1821; married Amanda Sperry, born 1818, died May 6, 1910, aged 92.


Thomas Sheldon married Harriett Winters. They came from Rhode Island to Pawling, Dutchess County, N.Y., in 1746. Among their children were two sons, Potter and Caleb.

Potter Sheldon, the son of Thomas and Harriett (Winters) Sheldon, was born in 1745. He settled in Dover, Dutchess County, N.Y. His wives were, 1st, Rebecca Buell, and 2nd, Hannah Soule. The children of Potter Sheldon were:

By 1st wife:

  1. Abraham, drowned near Schuyler Island.
  2. Rebecca, married 1st, ________King; 2nd, Elias Young. M.
By 2nd wife:

  1. Susan, married Eben Chase. Resided Duanesburg, N.Y.
  2. Lucy, married N. Barlow, Charlestown, N.Y.
  3. Phebe, married John Eaton. Resided Charlestown, N.Y.
  4. Martha, married Edwards Adams. Resided Cortland, N.Y.
  5. Elizabeth, married _______Cameron. Resided Pine Plains, N.Y.
  6. Clarissa, married Jonathan Case.
  7. Raymond.

Raymond Sheldon, the son of Peter and Hannah (Soule) Sheldon, was born July 25, 1777, in Pawling, Dutchess County, N.Y. Married 1st, Margaret _____, born Nov. 11, 1774; 2nd, Dec. 23, 1819, Julia Millington, born Jan. 20, 1799; died Aug. 28, 1887, the daughter of Jonathan and Susanna (Buck) Millington. Raymond Sheldon came from Dutchess County, N.Y., to Russia. He was a farmer and connected with the Russia Baptist Church. Raymond Sheldon died Jan. 13, 1867. The children of Raymond Sheldon were:

By 1st wife:

  1. Potter, born Nov. 13, 1799; died Dec. 15, 1853. Married Mercy _____, born July 6, 1810; died Mar. 24, 1871. They resided in Clayton, N.Y., and had a large family.
  2. Seneca, born May 30, 1801.
  3. Sylvia, born May 30, 1801. Married William C. Wright. Resided Fort Atkinson, Wis.
  4. Lucy, born Oct. 16, 1803. Married Isaac G. Merriman. Resided Lowville, N.Y.
  5. Eliza, born Sept. 8, 1810. Married Isaac Parkhurst. They resided in Scriba, Oswego County, N.Y. Their children were: Esther, James W., Byron, Artie L., Clayton, Estella M., Henry C.
By second wife:

  1. Susan M., born Feb. 20, 1821; died Dec. 23, 1852. Married George L. Squire. Their children were: Herman, Harriett, Gertrude E. (Mrs. Mellen of Athol, Mass.).

Caleb Sheldon, the son of Thomas and Harriett (Winters) Sheldon, was born in 1747. He resided in Pawling, N.Y. He was 60 years a pious Baptist. He was thrice married, 1st to Abigail Waldo; 2nd to Mary Ross; 3rd to Mary Roots. The children of Caleb Sheldon were:

By 1st wife:

  1. Beulah, born 1770. Married Jeremiah Butts. Resided Kortright, N.Y.
  2. Olive, born 1772. Married 1st, David Davis; 2nd, Jacob Yale.
  3. Luther, born 1774. Resided Dover, N.Y.
  4. Agrippa, born 1776. Resided Dover, N.Y.
  5. Abigail.
By 2nd wife:

  1. Mary, born 1782. Married Nathaniel Lines.
  2. Elizabeth, died aged three.
  3. Caleb, born 1787. Resided Kent, Conn.
  4. Gideon, born 1788.
  5. Emma, born 1790. Married Nathan Birdsall.
  6. Mercy, born 1792. Married Jonathan Evans. Resided Dover, New York.

Abigail Sheldon, the daughter of Caleb and Abigail (Waldo) Sheldon, was born Mar. 9, 1778. Married Enenezer Ward, born Dec. 20, 1777; died July 18, 1853, the son of Ichabod and Mehitabel (Marcy) Ward. They came from Dover, N.Y., to Norway, then to Russia. They were farmers. Late in life they removed to Jefferson County, N.Y., about 1848. They are buried there at Evans Mills. Abigail (Sheldon) Ward died Aug. 1873, aged 95. Ebenezer and Abigail (Sheldon) Ward had children:

  1. Amanda, married Abner Cleveland. Resided Bedford, Ohio.
  2. Lodoiska, married Stukeley Congdon, b. Feb.27, 1797, the son of Nicholas and Margaret (Gardner) Congdon. They resided in Watertown, N.Y. Their grand-daughter, Miss Harriett R. Congdon, is President of Monticello Seminary for Girls at Godfrey, Ill.
  3. Waldo, born Oct. 4, 1805; died Apr. 23, 1895. Married 1st, Ann McKenzie; 2nd, Sophia Downer. They were staunch Methodists at Gravesville. Their daughter is Mrs. Bell Clark, aged 88, of Poland, N.Y.
  4. Ebenezer, received A.M. Hamilton College Class of 1832. He resided in Bedford, Ohio.
  5. Henry, born Dec. 5, 1808. He resided La Fargeville, N.Y. 6. Mary, married Thomas Brakefield. They resided in Wisconsin.
  6. Charles Pulaski, born Nov. 11, 1811. Moved to Evans Mills in 1848. His son Charles resides on the old homestead.
  7. Fanny, married Hiram Hall. Resided Ava, N.Y.
  8. Albert, born May 23, 1817.
  9. Ann, born Apr. 1, 1819.
  10. Hiram L., born Nov. 11, 1822; died 1881, Gloversville, N.Y. A graduate A.B. Hamilton College, 1851. A teacher.

Ebenezer Sheldon was born 1770; died Jan. 16, 1849, in Floyd, N.Y. He married 1st, Sarah _____, born 1769; died Dec. 12, 1837; 2nd, Deborah _____. It is not known how Ebenezer Sheldon is connected with the foregoing Sheldon's. Ebenezer Sheldon and wife were Baptists in the Russia Union Church. He was a farmer. He and his 1st wife are buried in Prospect. Ebenezer Sheldon had children:

  1. Ann, married ______Cole. Resided Carmel, N.Y. She had a son Norman S. Cole.
  2. Maria, married _____Washburn. She had sons Norman S. and Edgar.
  3. Sarah, born 1803; died June 25, 1849. Married Rensselaer Smith. Their daughter Maria A., who died Mar. 22, 1880, married Jonathan Bliss, Whiteboro, N.Y.
  4. Eben B., born Feb. 1804; died Oct. 30, 1831.
  5. Julia, born Feb. 21, 1807; died May 20, 1847, at Oneida Lake, N.Y. Married Dec. 29, 1829, Sidney Beebe, born July 21, 1806; died May 31, 1881, the son of Silas and Polly (King) Beebe. They had several children.
  6. George, born Mar. 3, 1808; died Sept. 4, 1836.


Jeremiah Smith, born 1733, died May 17, 1810. His wife, Abigail Smith, was born in 1741 and died August 16, 1811. They resided in Rhode Island and came to Russia. Their children were:

  1. Jonathan, born September 25, 1761, died October 13, 1830. He resided in Norway, New York.
  2. Gideon, born February 9, 1763, died in infancy.
  3. David Smith, born February 5, 1764, died October 14, 1835. His wife was Susanna Hathaway, born June 26, 1770, died March 8, 1845. They resided in Norway. Their children were Jeremiah, Eunice, Irena, Isaac, Susan, Marietta, Alden, Bailey H., Phebe, Lovina, Charles C.
  4. Rhoba, born January 9, 1767, died September 2, 1805. She married Josiah Smith. They resided in Russia.
  5. Jeremiah, born January 26, 1769, died May 12, 1818. Married Rachel ______, who died August 28, 1823, aged 50. They lived in Russia.
  6. Phebe, born July 18, 1771, died May 22, 1831. She married a Hathaway.
  7. Infant born April 24, 1773.
  8. Stephen, born August 17, 1774. died June 28, 1854. Married Amy Coon. Their daughter, Betsey Smith, born May 11, 1800, died June 12, 1891, in Harmony, New York. She became the wife of Marvin Pardee, brother of Josiah.
  9. Abigail, born March 5, 1777, died Novemebr 1, 1808. She was the first wife of Josiah Pardee.
  10. Richard, born May 18, 1779, died July 25, 1805. His wife was Elizabeth Corey, who was afterwards Mrs. Almon Beecher. Their children were Richard and Jeremiah Smith.
  11. Amity, born December 22, 1781, died June 11, 1842. Married Deacon Nathan Millington.
  12. Lydia, born January 19, 1785, died October 5, 1871. She married Ebenezer Pardee. They resided in Russia.

Ephraim Smith was supposed to have been some connection of the above family. Ephraim Smith was born December 25, 1757, and died September 1, 1827. His wife, Sarah Smith, was born April 14, 1765, and died July 9, 1841. They resided in Gloucester, Rhode Island, where their first three children were born; in Adams, Mass., where the next five were born; in Hartford, Washington County, New York, where the next three were born; in Rome, New York, where the last two were born. Ephraim and Sarah Smith had children:

  1. Stephen, 2nd.
  2. Ephraim, born September 10, 1782, died September 10, 1784.
  3. Esther, born December 19, 1784, died October 10, 1860. Married John Graves, Esq. They resided in Russia, New York. Solomon Graves was their son.
  4. Patience, born April 3, 1786. She was married twice. She had two children by her first husband. Her second husband was a Mallett, of Stratford, New York.
  5. Marabeth, born June 25, 1789, died May 21, 1856. She was the second wife of Benjamin Benjamin of Norway, New York, born June 27, 1776, died Oct. 4, 1861.
  6. Lemuel, born October 2, 1790.
  7. Delilah, born December, 1792. She was Mrs. Carpenter and resided in Western New York State.
  8. Mahalah, born June, 1794.
  9. Sally, born April, 1796, died 1830.
  10. Almira, born May, 1798.
  11. Arthur, born 1800.
  12. Orsanus, born May, 1805. His daughter was Mrs. Esther Byington of Mexico, New York.
  13. Betsey, born 1810.

Stephen Smith, 2nd, the son of Ephraim and Sarah Smith, was born September 10, 1780, in Gloucester, Rhode Island; married, first, September 12, 1806, Rhoba Luther, born 1787, died February 11, 1813; second, September 18, 1813, Margery Luther, born March 19, 1789 and died May 29, 1854; third, October 11, 1854, Diadamia Hatch (Turner), born 1813, died December 27, 1897, in Salisbury, New York, the daughter of Ezra and Sally (Geer) Hatch, of Steuben, N.Y. Rhoba and Margery Luther were sisters. Stephen Smith was more than forty years a justice of the peace in the town of Russia. His name appears on many old deeds and documents of the town. He was a farmer in the village of Cold Brook. He and his first two wives are buried in a plot on the old farm. Probably Stephen Smith was a member of the first Methodist Class in Cold Brook. He was very active in the building of the Russia Union Church He was a prime-mover in the building of the Cold Brook Church. His wife, Diadania Smith, married, first, Herman Turner. Sophia, wife of Roswell Perkins, of Cold Brook, was her daughter. She married, third, March 13, Elisha Wood of Stratford, New York, by Rev. James Stanton. She was 72 years a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Stephen Smith, 2nd, died June 21, 1866, in Cold Brook. The children of Stephen, 2nd, and Rhoba (Luther) Smith were:

  1. Rhoba, born 1807; married Charles Clark. Resided Los Angeles, Calif. Their son, Charles Clark, was on the staff of the San Francisco Morning Call.
  2. Alfred, born May 19, 1809, never married. Murdered in gold region, Sierra City, Calif., September, 1878.
  3. Margery, born April 1, 1811, died February 25, 1813. 4. Alanson, born July 27, 1812. His wife was Ellen. He was a judge, and died at Boise City, Idaho. Two of their children died in infancy, Stephen T., born February, 1844, died September 26, 1851; Clarence E., born June, 1848, died January 15, 1851. The only child of Stephen, 2nd, and Diadania (Hatch) Turner Smith is Sarah Amelia, born 1856. Now Mrs. Lucian S. Wood of Stratford, New York.

Elisha Smith resided in Russia when he died, January 22, 1825, aged 44. His wife, Philinda (Phila) Smith, died April 24, 1866, aged 89. He made his will January 21, 1825. The executors named were James Barker and Phila Smith. The witnesses were Adam Frink, Israel Smith and Dr. Roland Sears. Elisha and Philinda Smith had children:

  1. Orrin.
  2. Lyman.
  3. Farley, born 1808, died January 4, 1889. His wife was Louisa, who died November 16, 1849, aged 20.
  4. Julia Ann, born 1812, died July 30, 1884.
  5. Orlina, married Isaac Beecher.
  6. Samantha.
  7. Sally.
  8. Esther.

Israel Smith was a brother of Elisha Smith. Israel Smith died August 14, 1857, aged 76. His wife, Sally, died October 17, 1856, aged 73. Israel and Sally Smith had children:

  1. Minerva.
  2. Philinda.
  3. Clarissa, born 1810, died April 19, 1847. She married Charles Prindle.

Israel and Elisha Smith, as far as known, were no connection of the other Smith families in Russia.

Continue on to Part 6.

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Created: 9/3/98
Updated: 10/1/98
Copyright ©1998 Jane Dieffenbacher
Copyright ©1930 Russia Union Church
All Rights Reserved.