Three Rivers
History From America's Most Famous Valleys

William Feeter History and Genealogy

Book loaned by Nancy Cioch. Many thanks Nancy!

This History of William Feeter, A Soldier in the War of American Independence
and of His Father, Lucas Vetter, the ancestor of the Feeter-Feder-Feader-Fader families
IN THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA, with genealogy of the family compiled at the request of
Little Falls, N.Y. Press of Stebbins & Burney, 1901
Copyright by James D. Feeter, 1901


Death of an Aged and respected Resident of Little Falls
a Long and Active Business Career

Little Falls, Jan. 24, 1892. Hon. James Feeter died at his home on Ann Street last evening at 6:30 o'clock. He had been ill four weeks, and last evening sank rapidly. The closing hours were peaceful to the aged merchant, who was conscious to the last, and seemed to suffer no pain. His death, although not unexpected, was hastened by his enfeebled condition. Thus passed away a respected resident, whose remarkable business career covered a period of fifty-eight years in the same location. Hon. James Feeter was born at Inghams Mills, in the town of Manheim, Jan. 14, 1806, and was consequently 86 years old. He was married to Cynthia Small, Sept. 24, 1829, who died in 1878 after they had lived together nearly fifty years. Two children were born to them, the late William Feeter and James D. Feeter, cashier of the Little Falls National Bank, who survives. Mr. Feeter was the grandson of Col. William Feeter, who participated in the battles of Oriskany, Stone Arabia and other important engagements, and the son of Adam Feeter, who was the first post-rider in this section of the state. The latter died on the night that President Lincoln was assassinated, at the advanced age of 83 years. In 1831, Mr. Feeter moved to this village, which then contained a small population. Three years later he engaged in the grocery business with Orrin Searles, and subsequently purchased his interest. In the spring of 1842 he met reverses by losing his entire stock of merchandise by a freshet, which was caused by a cloudburst that choked up the creek in the rear of his store, now know as Skinner run. Some of the goods were found floating about St. Johnsville, so strong was the current and volume of water. He bought his goods of a firm in New York by the name of McCoon & Sherman, and wrote them a letter giving the details of his misfortune, mentioning the fact that he had money enough left to cancel his indebtedness,and would like to make arrangements for another stock of goods, providing they could wait for their pay. A reply came back requesting Mr. Feeter to bring an empty canal boat to New York and get what he wanted. In 1849 his store burned with the contents, which was a total loss. Many men would have been discouraged with this second calamity, so soon after the flood, but not so with Mr. Feeter, who went to work with his remarkable business perception, built up a large brick block and laid the foundation of a large and valuable property, which was accumulated by hones and fair dealing.

Mr. Feeter was one of a family of eight children, two of whom still survive, Mr. Margaret Ayers, and William A Feeter, aged 76, who resides in the old homestead at Snell's Bush.

In politics he was an uncompromising Republican and the lifelong friend of Thurlow Weed and Roscoe Conkling. In the fall of 1847 he was elected to the assembly from the second district of Herkimer on the Whig ticket by a majority of 213, after a most exciting contest, over Judge Vickery, democrat, a noted politician at that time of the town of Ohio, and was one of the first Whigs in the state legislature. The district was 600 democratic, which was overcome by the Herkimer democrats voting for Mr. Feeter. The Barnburners supported the regular Democratic ticket, and L. L. Merry of Ilion, who was younger than Mr. Feeter, was elected at the same time from the first district on the Whig ticket by the same majority. The deceased was prominent in politics in those days and was on intimate terms with Governor John Young, Millard Fillmore, then state comptroller, and Christopher Morgan, secretary of state. The Whigs had 70 majority in the legislature and Amos K. Bradley was speaker. When the Republican party was organized Mr. Feeter did good service for better government in this locality, and was recognized for his valuable services by his party in being chosen a member of the state committee and presidential elector from this congressional district. He also was elected several times as president of Little Falls. He was one of the organizers of the Little Falls National Bank, besides being a stockholder in the old National Herkimer County Ban. He was a constant attendant of the Emmanuel Episcopal church, and his funeral will be held from there Tuesday, at 2 P. M.


At a special meeting of the Board of Directors of the Little Falls National Bank, held at the bank on the 25th day of January, 1892, the following being present: Hon. R. H. Smith, James H. Ives, George Nelson, James H. Bucklin, Hon. S. M. Richmond, Hon. E. C. Rice, Isaac Small, Arnold L. Eaton, the following resolutions were adopted:

Whereas, The death on the 23d inst. of Hon. James Feeter, one of the founders and charter directors of the Little Falls National Bank has been brought to our notice, and we, as his late co-directors, desire to pay tribute to his memory;

Resolved, That by the death of Mr. Feeter, we are deprived of an associate whom an acute faculty of observation and long business experience made a safe adviser in all fiscal matters, and the loss of whose wound counsel and ever ready assistance is deeply felt by your board; the stockholders of this bank have lots an officer whose efforts have largely contributed to its present prosperity, and who deservedly possessed their entire confidence.

Resolved, That as directors and stockholders of this bank, and as citizens of this community, we deeply regret his death and extend to his family and friends our sincere sympathy.

Resolved, That the officers and employees of this bank attend Mr. Feeter's funeral at 2 o'clock on the afternoon of January 26, 1892.

Resolved,That these resolutions be inscribed in our book of minutes, and published in the local papers, and that a copy be presented to the friends of the deceased.


The funeral of James Feeter was solemnized at Emmanuel Church at 2 P. M. this afternoon. The Rev. Ernest Marlett conducted the burial services of the Episcopal Church. The choir chanted the burial anthem and the De Profundis in an impressive manner. Most of the business places along Main street were closed out of respect to the memory of the deceased. The bearers were James H. Ives, J. H. Bucklin, A. W. Shephard, P. A. Conyne, E. C. Rice, Luke Snell, S. M. Richmond and C. E. Teall. The internment occurred in the Church street cemetery.

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