Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Footnote to History: Stephen T. B. Heermance

From The Evening Register, May 5, 1874:

Samuel T. B. Heermance, Esq., was next called upon, and seizing the spade in his brawny hand, like one innured to work, and in earnest in whatever he undertakes, he said:

Gentlemen:-- Spades appear to be "trumps" to-day, and as I have been invited, I cannot refuse to "take a hand." The officers of the New York Coral and Shell Marble Company, I think, will bear out my assertion that I have aided them all in my power to further their enterprise. I have not only parted with my land that they might run their railroad track through it, but I sacrifice my quiet repose to the resounding of the steam whistle and the rattling of railroad cars through these solitudes. But as I have been guaranteed a "free pass" over the road, I am reconciled to all the threatened discomfitures.
Stephen Heermance participated in the groundbreaking for the new railroad, offering these rather wistful remarks, and even hosted a "bountiful repast" afterward in his home, but he didn't stay living in the stone house beside the railroad.

Although the Heermance family had lived on the site and farmed the land that sloped down to South Bay since the seventeenth century, after he sold the parcel F. W. Jones needed for his railroad, Stephen Heermance moved into Hudson and lived in this house at the southern end of "brick row" on East Court Street. Later he moved to Brooklyn, where he lived for the remainder of his life.

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