William Platt, only son of Hon. Charles Henry and Elizabeth (Platt) Adams, was born in Rhinebeck, New York, February 18, 1859. He is a lineal descendant of Presidents John and John Quincy Adams. Through his great-grandmother, Christina (Van Bergen) Adams, he is descended from Captain Martin Van Bergen, who came from Holland in 1630, and also from Major Derrick Wessel Ten Broeck, mayor of Albany. His great-great-grandmother, Nellie Salisbury Van Bergen, was a great-granddaughter of the famous Admiral Salisbury; his grandmother, Agnes (Egberts) Adams, was a daughter of Anthony Egberts, who was an officer in the American army during the revolutionary war, and a sister of Egbert Egberts, the father of the knit goods industry in Cohoes, first president of the National Bank of Cohoes and the donor of Egberts Institute to the city.
William Platt Adams was educated at De Garmo Academy at Rhinebeck, from which he was graduated 1875. After finishing his preparatory course he matriculated at Union College, where he made an enviable record, graduating A.B., class of 1879. He won both the Clark and Allen prizes for excellence in literary work and was chosen class orator. He was prominent also in athletics, and on several occasions brought his college colors first over the winning line in running contests. In 1880 he formed a partnership with John L. Newman, of Albany, for the manufacture of knit underwear, locating their mills at Cohoes, which has since been his home. This connection with Mr. Newman existed ten years, when both retired and have not since been actively engaged in public business. He represented his father's interests in Cohoes, the latter having removed to New York. Since his father's death, in 1902, he has represented and managed the Adams estate, consisting of mills, business blocks and other improved and unimproved real estate. He directs and manages his own private estate and serves as director of the First National Bank of Cohoes, and the Commerce Insurance Company of Albany. He also has large real estate interests in Rhinebeck, New York. His taste for travel is abundantly gratified by frequent journeys at home and abroad, one tour of Europe and foreign lands extending over a period of three years, accompanied by his family. He is a Republican in politics, but the Adams love of public life and prominence is not one of his characteristics. In 1909 he was appointed by Governor Hughes one of the commissioners of the Hudson-Fulton celebration, October to November, 1909, and chairman of the committee to accompany the Governor on his up-river trip from New York City to Cohoes. At the latter city, which was the culmination point of the celebration, Governor and Mrs. Hughes were entertained during their stay by Mr. and Mrs. Adams at their beautiful home. In 1910 he is a trustee of Union College, and a member of the Graduate Council. He is a member and an elder of the Dutch Reformed church of Cohoes. He is a member of the college fraternity, Alpha Delta Phi, and of the Alpha Delta Phi Club of New York City. He has been a member of the County and Castle Club, Isle of Wight, England; the St. Nicholas of New York City, and is a member of the Waterford Country Club; University Club of Albany, of Troy Chapter. Sons of the Revolution, Dutchess County Society of New York, and the American Club in Paris.
He married, January 23, 1884, at Red Hook, New York, Katherine Whiteman, born at Red Hook, daughter of Jacob W. Elseffer, born in Red Hook, September 6, 1831, died November 15, 1907, a prominent attorney of Dutchess county, New York, and descendant of a family founded in that county a century and a half ago. In 1580 Louis Elzvier, a printer, left Germany for Holland to escape religious agitations, and soon thereafter books bearing the imprint of "Elzvier" appeared. He had seven sons, five following the business of their father and becoming distinguished therein, and the other two returning to the highlands of Germany. From this noted family of printers, whose fame spread throughout the civilized world as the printers of the Elzvierian Bibles, a male descendant came to America in 1738 and settled in Rhinebeck. Since then the now Elseffer family have been prominent in Dutchess county, holding various high positions in financial and political life. Through the Whitemans the Elseffers are descended from Jacob Sharpe, who had conveyed to him and others by Governor Hunter in 1710 six thousand acres of land in Columbia county, in trust for themselves and the other Palatines. Jacob W. Elseffer married Delia Eliza Bonesteel, born at Claremont, Columbia county, New York. Children of William Platt and Katherine W. (Elseffer) Adams: Elizabeth Platt and Katherine Elseffer.
Charles Henry Adams (1824 - 1902)
Elizabeth Platt Adams (1830 - 1866)
Katherine Whiteman Elseffer Adams (1857 - 1924)*
Elizabeth Adams Heermance (1886 - 1919)*
Katherine Elseffer Adams Anderson (1887 - 1963)*
Sarah Platt Adams (____ - 1857)*
Mary Adams Johnston (1858 - 1930)*
William Platt Adams (1859 - 1928)
New York, USA
Created by: Beverly Kane
Record added: Jun 25, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 92533624