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Philander D. Stone
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Birth: Sep. 17, 1807
Berkshire County
Massachusetts, USA
Death: Apr. 5, 1890
Monroe County
New York, USA

Born probably at his parents' farm in Windsor, Berkshire County, Massachusetts, Philander was the youngest son and the ninth of ten children born to Captain Simon Stone and Charlotte (Hall) Stone (his birth was not recorded in Windsor by church or town). Philander was 11 years old in 1818 when first his oldest surviving brother, Lyman, died of consumption (at the age of 24 in July) and then their father died unexpectedly that December of a fever (at about age 49). A neighbor, Gideon Parsons, was appointed legal guardian of the minor children, including Philander and his younger sister, Almira; their mother's brother and neighbor, Asa Hall, Jr., was asked by the family to be administrator of both estates, and he oversaw the inventorying and selling off of land and personal property and the dividing of property and interests.

Not long after the estates were settled (sometime in the early 1820's) it seems the widow Charlotte Stone and all of her children except for her grown son, Orin, moved westward to Riga in Monroe County, New York, where several of her Hall relatives had previously migrated from Windsor to territory still somewhat of a frontier. There another of her sons, Ward Stone, died in 1829 at the age of 26. In his will he left his younger brother Philander (then age 22) a fur cap, a pair of gold watch seals, and a portion of property.

At the time of the 1830 census Philander was heading up a household in Riga consisting of himself and three women who were probably his older sister Melinda, his younger sister Almira, and their mother, Charlotte. Other related heads of households living in Riga on this census were Philander's older brother, Ira Stone, and their cousins, Hubbard Hall, Daniel Hall, Matthew Hall, Alvah Hall, Alva Hall 2d, Philo Hall, and Aaron Hall.

On 1 May 1831 Philander underwent adult baptism, along with his sister, Almira, and their adult cousins, Alvah and Chapin Hall, at the Riga Congregational church. Philander was admitted as a member of the society on that date, as were many of his relatives that year.

By the 1840 census Philander had married and was heading a household consisting of himself, his wife Abigail (Savage), and their little boy, Albert Dwight Stone, who was born a half mile east of the village of Churchville on 14 November 1839. Philander's occupation involved "Manufacture and trade," and he lived near Hubbard Hall and his brother, Ira Stone. It is said that Philander Stone "was connected with mechanical pursuits and erected some of the first dwellings in Churchville" including his own home. [_History of Rochester & Monroe Co., NY_] Another son, Charles N. Stone, was born to Philander and Abigail in 1842, and a daughter, Charlotte E. Stone (known as "Lottie") was born circa 1848.

By the 1850 census Philander and his wife and three children were shown to be living in Churchville, or at least near the Churchville post office not far from Riga. It is not clear whether the family moved or the town line designations changed. In subsequent years they remained in the same Churchville home Philander had built on South Main Street, with Philander devoting himself to many interests, his occupation being variously described as "Seraphim Mangr." (1850), Painter (1860), Peddler (1866), Carriage Maker (1870), carriage painter (1871-73) and Wagon Maker (1880). He appeared to be prosperous (owned $1000 each in real estate and personal property per 1860 and 1870 censuses). In 1860 his oldest son "Burt" was helping him in the carriage and house painting business; by the 1870 census "Burt" had done even better and had become a "Merchant." Son Charles died in 1863, a Union Civil War veteran.

Philander D. Stone of Churchville, Monroe Co., New York wrote his last will and testament on 17 March 1883, witnessed by Cyrus H. Briscoe and Henry Snyder, leaving all to wife Abigail, grandson Harry D. Bushnell, and son, Albert D. Stone, and naming his wife and son as executors. He died seven years later, preceding his wife and son Albert in death, but joining his younger sister, Almira, his son Charles, and his daughter, Lottie, in the family plot in Churchville. Perhaps his mother Charlotte and brothers Ira and Ward are buried there too, but if so, their records have been lost.

Philander Stone was described as a "stalwart follower" of the Republican party once the Whig party had collapsed, and was a charter member and officer of the Churchville Congregational church. He was also known in the region as the inventor and manufacturer of a small kind of harmonium or "organette." At the time of his death he was described as a "pioneer of the Town of Riga." According to the _History of Rochester and Monroe Co., NY_ (Vol. 2, p. 1301): "His life was guided by high and honorable principles and actuated by worthy motives and in many respects furnished an example worthy of emulation by those who came after him."

From the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle Newspaper, May 18, 1904:

Associations That Center About the Former Home of the Stone Family.

Churchville, May 17.—The older residents of the village have been interested during the last few weeks in the demolishing of the former home of the late Philander Stone and family. It is located on South Main Street, but a short distance from the birthplace of the late Frances W. Willard, and has been torn down in order to make room for a modern house to be built for John C. Newman.

It was one of the oldest residences of the village, and here for many years lived the family of Philander Stone, who invented and manufactured the first harmonium or organette introduced in this section of the country. The instrument at first, like all things in the early stages of development, was a crude affair containing two octaves of keys, and was played upon the lap. One hand operated the bellows while the other played upon the keyboard. Later Mr. Stone enlarged the scope of the instrument to about five octaves, mounted it upon legs and added the foot pedal, that supplied the power to the bellows. Finally there was added the _____ pedal.

For many years the manufacture of these harmoniums was quite a prominent feature of the village until the modern reed organ was introduced, when the call for the little melodeons ceased. With the passing away of the old home, comes the reminder of an industry that originated here and spread, and then ceased because of the more modern instrument.

Family links: 
  Simon Stone (____ - 1818)
  Charlotte Hall Stone (1771 - ____)
  Abigail D. Savage Stone (1818 - 1901)*
  Albert Dwight Stone (1839 - 1910)*
  Charles N. Stone (1841 - 1863)*
  Charlotte Stone Bushnell (1848 - 1880)*
  Lyman Stone (1793 - 1818)*
  Oren Stone (1795 - 1888)*
  Ward Stone (1803 - 1829)*
  Philander D. Stone (1807 - 1890)
  Almira Stone (1811 - 1870)*
*Calculated relationship
Large STONE monument in the Philander Stone family plot: on one side it says "STONE," on the other:

Philander Stone
Abigail Savage His Wife
Charles N. Stone 1841-1863
Lottie Stone Bushnell
Almira Stone 1811-1870

Individual markers in a row, read, across their arched tops:



Creekside Cemetery
Monroe County
New York, USA
Plot: Section L, Lot 91, Grave 8
Created by: Memories of You
Record added: Apr 14, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 51102897
Philander D. Stone
Added by: Janet Wright Garrett
Philander D. Stone
Added by: Janet Wright Garrett
Philander D. Stone
Added by: Ann Freeman
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