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Biographical Review: Greene, Schoharie and Schenectady Counties, New York
Garret W. Mattice

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[This information is from pp. 149-151 of Biographical Review Volume XXXIII: Containing Life Sketches of Leading Citizens of Greene, Schoharie and Schenectady Counties, New York (Boston: Biographical Review Publishing Company, 1899). It is in the collection of the Grems-Doolittle Library of the Schenectady County Historical Society at 920 BIO.]

Portrait of Garret W. Mattice

Portrait: Garret W. Mattice

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Garret W. Mattice, a well-known and highly respected agriculturist of Schoharie County, owns and occupies a farm on the Middleburg road in the town of Fulton, about two miles from Fultonham. He was born June 2, 1830, a son of Adam L. Mattice, and is a direct descendant of Nicholas Mattice, who emigrated from Germany in the early part of the eighteenth century and took up a tract of wild land in the vicinity of the Upper Fort, Schoharie County.

Conrad Mattice, son of Nicholas and the next in line of descent, was a lifelong resident of this part of the State. In his early manhood he located on land in Middleburg, where his son Lawrence, the grandfather of Garret W., was born.

At the time of the Revolution, Lawrence Mattice, though but a boy of sixteen, was employed at the Middle Fort, and with Murphy and other brave soldiers marched out to meet the enemy. On one of his hasty expeditions he and a companion succeeded in taking prisoner a man by the name of Adam Chrysler, whom they carried to the fort. He continued in service until the close of the war, when he settled on a farm, and from that time until his death, at the venerable age of eighty-six years, was engaged in cultivating the land. He was quite prominent in the management of town matters, and at one time was nominated to the State Assembly. His wife, Maria Brown, a native of this part of the county, bore him seven children, none of whom survive. She lived to be upward of eighty years of age, and died at the old homestead. Both she and her husband were members of the Lutheran church.

Adam L. Mattice was born September 15, 1803, in Middleburg. Following in the footsteps of his ancestors, he became a tiller of the soil. On coming of age he purchased a farm not far from the old home, and in the log house that stood in the clearing began life for himself, poor in pocket, but rich in energy, courage, and ambition. By dint of industry and economy he succeeded in paying for his land, besides which he laid up a small sum. On April 5, 1849, having sold his first estate, he took possession of the farm now occupied by his son, Garret W., and here resided until his death, July 5, 1888. A man of sound judgment and good financial ability, he became prominent in the town, and served as Highway Commissioner and Assessor for a number of years. Both he and his wife were active members of the Baptist church. He married Dinah Mattice, who was born in the town of Blenheim, a daughter of David Mattice, a prosperous farmer. They had a family of five children, three of whom survive, namely: Garret W.; Dinah, wife of Josiah Mann; and Elizabeth, wife of Peter Shaffer.

Garret W. Mattice was born in the log cabin in which his parents settled soon after marriage, and during his earlier years he assisted in the pioneer labor of redeeming a farm from the wilderness. In 1849 he came with them to his present farm, which he and a brother who died in 1877 helped to improve. From that time until the death of his father, in 1888, Mr. Mattice had the general oversight of the property, which is now in his possession. This farm contains one hundred and seventy acres of laud, and he also owns a farm of one hundred acres on the road to Cobleskill. Skilful and progressive, he has met with success as a general farmer. He raises hay, grain, and hops, is an extensive dealer in cattle, and from his small herd of cows makes a choice grade of butter, which he ships to Albany. He has made many of the most important improvements on the place, including the erection of the present commodious dwellinghouse and the substantial barns and farm buildings.

In politics Mr. Mattice affiliates with the Democratic party, and besides serving as Commissioner of Highways he was Supervisor from 1896 until 1898. He is a regular attendant of the Baptist church, and in the building of the new edifice of that denomination gave material financial assistance.

On March 24, 1866, Mr. Mattice married Rachel Cowan, a daughter of James Cowan, well known in Fulton as an able farmer and lawyer. Mr. Cowan married Emeline Cary, of Schoharie, who passed to the life immortal at the age of sixty-eight years, while he attained the age of fourscore years. Mr. and Mrs. Mattice have one child living, a son, Paul B., and they have been bereft of two, namely: Eli G., who died aged three years, six months; and Ira C., who died aged four years and seven months. Paul B. Mattice after his graduation at the Middleburg High School entered Cornell University, class of 1901, intending there to fit himself for the bar. During the Spanish War he enlisted, July 17, 1898, in Company K, Two Hundred and Third New York Volunteers, and served until March 25, 1899, when he was mustered out as Corporal. On his return he again took up his studies at Cornell.

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