Price Family History
being an account of Daniel Price Sr. of Vestal Center, New York, and his descendants
Daniel Price Sr.
Our ancestor Daniel Price Sr. was born around 1747 in Greenfield, Fairfield county, Connecticut. George A. Price, a great-grandson of Daniel Price Sr., related in an 1885 autobiographical sketch1 that his ancestors had come from England in the early 1700's and had settled in Litchfield County, Connecticut. He stated that town records of Norwalk showed that his ancestors "bore a conspicuous part in the struggles of the early colonists". The Genealogical and Family History of Central New York by William Richard Cutter states that "Daniel Price was a soldier of the revolution, serving as a corporal in Captain Roswell Downing's company, of Lieutenant-Colonel Miles Powell's (Berkshire county) regiment of Massachusetts troops. He enlisted July 19, 1779, and was discharged August 23 of the same year. His service was at New Haven and his compensation included four and a half days (ninety miles) travel home. The family tradition places his residence in Litchfield county, Connecticut. He may have lived over the border in Massachusetts."
Daniel Price Sr. moved to New York state sometime between 1794 and 1800 (the above George A. Price biography puts the year at 1795), settling near what is today Vestal Center in Broome county, becoming one of the area's earliest pioneers. The Genealogical and Family History of Central New York states that his homestead was located about four miles from the Susquehanna river. The federal census for 1800 shows Daniel Price Sr. living in Broome county, New York, (then called Tioga county), with a wife, three sons, and two daughters. One of the sons was Daniel Price Jr., born in 1777; the youngest was James Price, born in 1794, and the third was possibly William Price.2 One of the daughters was Hannah Price, born in 1792, who married James Whittemore. Daniel's wife was Hannah, possibly Hannah Smith, although this is not certain.
Daniel Price Sr. joined a massive tide of settlers that headed westward from the New England states in the 1790's. A series of treaties removed many of the Indian tribes from the unsettled areas of present-day New York state, and after New York and Massachusetts in 1786 settled territorial disputes on who owned the ceded lands, the settlers began to pour in.
Overcrowding was the principle reason for leaving New England. For years the powerful Iroquois Confederation held back westward expansion through New York state. Consequently, land prices in New England soared as the population grew and competed for land. By the 1790's good farm land could go for as much as $50 an acre. When the West finally opened up, many of the younger sons of New England families naturally preferred the cheap, fertile lands of the frontier, which could be bought for two or three dollars an acre, to the rocky, overworked, and overpriced lands of home.
The fact that Daniel Price Sr. was one of the very first settlers in his community seems to be well established. Both the History of Broome County (1885) and the New Historical Atlas of Broome County (1876) list Daniel Price in the annals of early pioneers, most of whom came from Connecticut, Massachusetts, or the Wyoming Valley of Pennsylvania. The former work states that the Truesdells from Connecticut were among the first settlers in Vestal Center, and that "Aaron King and Daniel Price were also here at an early day." The Atlas first describes the Mercereau family settlements in Vestal township, followed by the comment that "among other early settlers are mentioned Samuel and Daniel Seymour, Daniel Price...". The George A. Price biography mentioned above states that when George's paternal grandfather (Daniel Price Jr.) arrived in Tioga County in 1795, "There was then but one white settlement in the locality." The Genealogical and Family History of Central New York further states that Daniel Price Jr. was one of the original seven settlers in Vestal Center.
The History gives us a rather detailed picture of early pioneer life in Broome county. Those who moved to Broome county in the late 1700's had made it to their new home following Indian trails, or sometimes no trails at all, since no roads had been built. The land was a vast wilderness, covered by thick forests and inhabited only by Indians and wild animals. "Through almost unending forests, over mountains, fording streams, struggling on day after day, the horses jaded, or the oxen poorly fed and weary, so came into Broome county many of the early settlers. Once upon the spot selected for their future homes, hard, earnest work began in the building of a log cabin. If the pioneer found a few neighbors within a circle of as many miles, he was aided, generously and willingly, in this work; if not, he must do the best he could with the aid of his brave-hearted wife, and his boy, if he had one..."
"The forests...abounded, not only with game that was a heaven-sent boon to early settlers, but with wild beasts which ravenously preyed upon the scanty flocks and sometimes imperiled the lives of the people. Long after they ceased to cause any apprehensions to the settlers themselves, these wild beasts, especially the wolves, were a constant source of annoyance, and every man's hand was raised against them for their extermination..."
"The deer in the forests supplied the inhabitants for many years with venison and to some extent with materials for clothing; for when the clothing in which emigrants came to their wilderness homes was worn out, and before flax had been raised or they had money to send away for cloth, many of them fashioned garments from deer skin..."
The area surrounding Vestal Center was a good example of the wilderness described above, as witnessed by descendants of John Fairbrother, neighbor of Daniel Price. "John Fairbrother came here in 1796," the History relates, "and settled about a mile south of Vestal Centre, where some of his descendants now live. According to the statement of one of his sons, made a few years ago, that section was then occupied only by Indians and wild beasts; the Choconut creek region was infested with great numbers of panthers. His son told William Mersereau that his father has shot 2,500 deer." The George A. Price biography states that in 1795 "the Oneida and Tuscarora tribes of Indians still inhabited a portion of the country, although they had disposed of their lands some ten years previous."
Although Daniel Price Sr. seems to have been widely recognized as an early settler, there is not too much information available about his personal life. The best we can do is piece together a picture from two census reports, a few land deeds, and possible references in court records.
Daniel Price Sr. and his descendants lived in and around the village of Vestal Center, New York. Deeds to his sons Daniel Price Jr. and James Price revealed that in 1810 the Price farm was located in a square lot of about 100 acres in the southeast corner of lot 9 in the township of Sidney, which, according to county maps, would have included a part of the present village of Vestal Center. This, however, may not have been the original homestead. The History states that "Ruggles Winchell and Daniel Price settled four miles back from the river road," which is probably the road along the Choconut creek which passes through the parcel of land described above. George A. Price states that in 1795 his grandfather Price "purchased for the sum of $60 a tract of 100 acres on condition that he should open a road through the woods for a certain distance".
In 1820 the Broome county census shows Daniel Price Sr. living with a wife (45 year old or older) and three children: one son age 16-26, and two daughters 10-16. The son was James Price, age 26, and the two daughters were new additions to the family since 1800. Therefore, Daniel Price Sr. had in all three sons and four daughters.
There is a problem with the identity of his wife. Hannah Price, mentioned as Daniel's late wife in an 1820 deed, died in 1816, and yet the 1820 census shows Daniel Price Sr. living with a woman of about his own age. Either he remarried before 1820, or the census report is in error. In either case, there is sufficient evidence available to suggest that Daniel's wife was Hannah Price, the former Hannah Smith, who died on August 23, 1816, at the age of 58.
By 1820, Daniel Price Sr. would have been around 70 years old. He probably died sometime in the 1820's, since 1820 marks the last year he is mentioned in county records. Another source, however, says that Daniel Price Sr. died on August 14, 1810 in Broome county.
Before Daniel Price Sr. passed away, he may have been seriously in debt. This is a little difficult to document, since his son Daniel Price Jr. was having legal problems of his own, and in places it is not entirely certain whether Daniel Jr. or Daniel Sr. is being referred to. In any case, Daniel was forced to part with his farm in 1820. Daniel's financial straits may well have been precipitated by bad weather and failing crops. The History of Susquehanna County, Pa. states that 1816 was a "year of great destitution" for farmers in the Choconut creek region. The corn crop was a total failure. Farmer Jehu Lord reports that "hogs were not fat enough to be called pork. Deer were poor, but with rye bread and a very few potatoes, furnished substinence for the pioneer. The snows of 1815-16-17 were not sufficient for sleighing."
The seriousness of Daniel Price's financial situation is apparent from a deed, recorded on August 8, 1820. On January 10, 1820, a lawsuit was brought against him by local citizen John Lagrange. The county sheriff, William Chamberlain, seized his property and put it up for auction. The 100-acre homestead, except for 30 acres deeded to his son Daniel Jr. in 1810, was sold in July for the meager sum of $85. The purchaser, surprisingly enough, was son James Price.
Daniel Price Jr.
Daniel Price Jr., born in Connecticut on February 3, 1777, was probably Daniel Price Sr.'s oldest son. He was married, had at least six sons and one daughter, and lived to age 73. He was an older brother of James Price, and uncle to the Daniel Price who moved to Iowa in 1855.
Daniel Price Jr. lived in and around the village of Vestal Center, New York, during his entire life, as witnessed by the abundant references to his name in county records. He is mentioned in the 1820, 1830, and 1835 census, and appears numerous times in the Broome County Book of Deeds. His most notable legacy, however, seems to be the lawsuits that followed him for much of his life.
The first mention of Daniel Price Jr. in Broome county records, (other than his inclusion in the Daniel Price Sr. household in the 1800 census) is in the Broome county supervisor's book, where he is recorded as having received money from the county in 1808.
Daniel Price Jr.'s name also appears in a store book of Joshua Whitney, dated "after 1803."
Daniel Price Jr. is listed by name in census reports for Broome county from 1820 to 1850. He married Deborah Cafferty in about 1803, and between 1804 and 1825 fathered at least six sons and one daughter. His wife Deborah was born in 1783 or 1784, probably the daughter of Josiah Cafferty Sr. and wife Deborah.3 Of the six sons, only one, Ryas W. Price, remained in the Vestal Center area for the rest of his life. Another, George S. Price, eventually settled near Kirkwood in Broome county. The others apparently moved out of the county or out of state during the mid-1800's.
The 1835 census states that Daniel Price Jr. possessed 45 acres of improved land, 11 cattle, 2 horses, 10 sheep, and 3 hogs. Two sons were still living with him, as was his daughter.
Daniel Price Jr.'s land holdings were in a fairly constant state of flux in the early 1800's. The Broome county index of deeds for the years 1813 to 1843 show that he was involved in at least ten separate transactions. A possible factor in his frequent buying and selling of land may have been his debts and legal problems.
It appears that the first piece of land that Daniel Price Jr. owned was a tract of 30 acres sold to him by his father Daniel Price Sr. in 1810. This land, located along the Choconut creek in the southeastern part of lot 9 in Vestal township, included part of the present village of Vestal Center itself. An 1842 deed indicates that Daniel Price once owned a saw mill. Later maps of Vestal Center show a saw mill across the creek from a house whose location fits the description in the 1810 deed.
Daniel Jr. owned this farm for only eight years. A deed recorded on August 11, 1818 reveals that the sheriff William Chamberlain seized the 30-acre farm and put it up for auction at the suit of local citizen Josiah Cafferty Jr.4 Daniel apparently owed Mr. Cafferty a debt of $400 and was not able to pay. Court records show that the suit was filed on February 12, 1818. The auction was held in July, and Josiah Cafferty purchased the property for five dollars. It would seem that Mr. Cafferty never did get his money, since a second suit was brought against Daniel Price two years later on February 21, 1820, for the same sum of $400.
Deeds from the next few years show transactions with various neighbors and family members. The most noteworthy of these would seem to be one dated June 1, 1842. The text of this deed shows that 100 acres of land owned by Daniel Price Jr. and his wife Deborah were put up for auction at the Phoenix Hotel in Binghamton on May 14, 1842. The New York Life Insurance and Trust Company had brought a suit against them, foreclosed the mortgage, and had the property sold. It was bought by a Charles P. Avery for the sum of $1309.92. This tract of land was in two parts, the first part being the same thirty acres sold to him by his father in 1810, apparently back in his possession, and the other part located in lot 9 with irregular boundaries, probably adjacent to the former part. It is interesting to note that one year later, this same Charles P. Avery sold land to Joseph H. Price, one of Daniel's sons.
Of all the references to Daniel Price Jr. which are available to the family historian, the most colorful are doubtless his misadventures in the courts.
Broome county court records from 1808-1820 reveal that Daniel Price Jr. was involved in at least four separate lawsuits, in which he nearly always appeared as the defendant. Only in one case, a lawsuit against neighbor James Brewster in December 1812-January 1813, did he appear as the plaintiff. The court recorder's notes say that in December 1812, M. Collier, attorney for the plaintiff, "ordered that the...cause proceed to trial." Twelve jurors were sworn in. The plaintiff Daniel Price had three witnesses: Jabesh Truesdell5, Lewis Mundy, and Samuel H. Seymour. After deliberating upon the case, the "jury return into court and say that the defendant is not guilty."
It is interesting to note that Daniel Price Jr. frequently appeared in court as a juror. He is mentioned as juror several times in 1809, and again in 1812, the same year he himself was involved in two separate lawsuits.
Debt problems led to the loss of his farm in 1818, and further debt problems were undoubtedly the cause of the 1842 lawsuit in which Daniel Price Jr. lost his 100-acre farm. In 1843 he was by no means debt-free. In the 1843 will of Thomas Nye, a local citizen of the Vestal Center area, it is stated that he had "two notes of hand on Daniel Price of 300 dollars."
Daniel Price Jr. is last mentioned by name in the 1850 Broome county census, where he and his wife are enumerated with son Ryas W. Price. He lists his age as 73, birthplace Connecticut. His wife Deborah was 66, born in New Jersey.
A tombstone in the Riverside Cemetery in the old town of Union, New York, bears the name of Daniel Price, died August 15, 1850, at the age of 73.
Our ancestor James Price, the last son of Daniel Price Sr., was born on September 18, 1794 in the state of Connecticut. He lived in the Vestal Center area, as did his father and brother Daniel, for his entire adult life. Between the years 1821 and 1832 he fathered two sons and two daughters. His wife Lucy, the former Lucy Giffin of New Hampshire, died on July 8, 1833, about one year after giving birth to their last son, Daniel6. James Price soon remarried, had three more children, and then died in 1845 at the age of 50.
In contrast to his father and brother, James Price seems to have lived a debt-free life, with no lawsuits or frequent buying and selling of property. James Price's property holdings were probably large in comparison with many of his neighbors. The only two deeds recorded in the county which bear his name show him buying land and not selling.
There are not many references to James Price in county records. The first time he is mentioned by name is in the November 1819 deed from Daniel Price (Sr.) to William R. Smith, in which James Price signed his name as a witness.
The next mention of James Price is in the deed, dated August 8, 1820, in which Daniel Price Sr.'s 70 acres are auctioned off and purchased by son James. As far as can be determined at this point, this is the farm which James possessed until he died in 1845. It was located in the southeast corner of lot 9 of Vestal township, "in a square body" of one hundred acres, excluding the thirty acres which Daniel Sr. sold to Daniel Jr. in 1810. This acreage would have encompassed much of the southwestern part of the village of Vestal Center and part of the Choconut creek.
James Price appears by name for the first time in the 1830 census, in which he is listed after John Fairbrother and before brother Daniel Price. The four persons in his household are himself, age 30 to 39, his wife, age 20 to 29, a son, age 5 to 9, and a daughter, age 5 to 9.
Although it is not listed in available Broome county records, we know that his third child, son Daniel Price, was born to his wife Lucy on May 17, 1832, in the village of Vestal Center. Lucy Price died about a year later on July 8, 1833.
The 1835 Broome county census shows James Price living on a 70-acre farm. There were three male and two female members in his household. His second wife was named Helena, born about 1804 in New Jersey. James Price's property holdings seem to have been fairly large in comparison with his neighbors. His 70-acre farm was much larger than the neighboring farms (according to the 1835 census data), and he had more livestock. He had 15 cattle, 3 horses, 23 sheep, and 7 hogs, all rather large numbers for that time and place.
In 1841 nephew William Price sold James 57 acres of land. It was located in the "south halfe of lot number one in the subdivision of great lot number fourteen" in Vestal township. This land is most likely the bottom half of the northwest corner of lot fourteen, which borders on the east of lot nine, just south and east of Vestal Center.
On June 13, 1842, witness James Price signed the last will and testament of neighbor Silas P. Truesdell. This is the last record we have of James before he died.
James Price died on April 23, 1845, and was buried in the Vestal Center cemetery next to his wife Lucy. James was only 50 years old when he died. His children, including 12-year-old son Daniel, were thereby orphaned7.
James left no will at the time of his death. A few months later a letter of administration of estate was drawn up by the county, appointing his widow Helena Price as administratrix. The document contains no specifics as to his property holdings or heirs.
James' son Daniel left Broome county in the 1840's and went to live with his uncle Robert Giffin in neighboring Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania. And with that a new chapter in the Price family history had begun.
James Price's first wife Lucy Giffin was the fifth child of Robert and Elizabeth (Shearer) Giffin (or Giffen) of Hillsboro county, New Hampshire. She was born on November 30, 1802 (or November 1, 1801), as was her twin sister Lydia. There were at least ten children born to Robert and Elizabeth ("Betsy") Giffin. The father Robert Giffin was born in England or Northern Ireland on September 12, 1766, the son of Robert Giffin Sr. and Agnes Taggett (or Taggart), immigrants from Northern Ireland. Robert Sr., born in 1742, had left Northern Ireland in or around 1768, first settling in Londonderry, New Hampshire, and soon afterward buying 56 acres in the town of Bedford for "fifteen pounds lawful money" on March 26, 17688.
Robert Giffin Jr. had a brother Patrick, who was born in Bedford, New Hampshire, on September 3, 1768. His descendants most likely still live in New Hampshire. 21-year-old Paul S. and 17-year-old John H. Giffin, great-great-grandsons of Patrick Giffin, were living with their mother at 136 Elm Street in Keene, Cheshire county, New Hampshire, in 1920. John Giffin died in Keene in August, 1979, at age 77.
The ten children of Robert and Betsy Giffin, according to one source, are as follows:
Several of the above dates are in question, since other sources differ. Lucy's tombstone in the Vestal Center cemetery, for instance, states that she died on July 8, 1833 at the age of 30 years, 8 months and 8 days, putting her birthdate at October 31, 1802.
In 1815 Robert and Betsy Giffin moved from New Hampshire to Choconut township, Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, immediately south of Vestal township in New York where the Prices were living. Listing the settlers of 1815, the History of Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania mentions that "Robert Giffen and his sons Isaac and Robert, farmers, settled on the Choconut next below James Rose." Robert Giffin died on January 19, 1821 at the age of 56 years and 5 months, and his wife Elizabeth died on September 12, 1835 at the age of 68. They are buried in the French and Indian War Cemetery (aka Chamberlain Cemetery) in Choconut, Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania, located a few yards west of Route 267 on the north side of Choconut.
The 1840 census shows Isaac Giffin and Robert Giffin living in Susquehanna county. Both were brothers of Lucy. This Robert Giffin was the eighth child of Robert and Betsy, being the third generation named "Robert" in the Giffin family. Robert had a twin sister named Susan.
This Robert Giffin never married, and he lived with three unmarried sisters: Jane, Susan, and Lydia (twin sister of Lucy Giffin Price). In the 1850 census for Choconut township, Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, we find 40-year-old Robert Giffin, born in New Hampshire, living with Lydia Giffin, age 49, Janie Giffin, age 42, and Susan Giffin, age 40, all born in New Hampshire. Also living with the Giffins is Daniel Price, age 18, born in New York.
In 1855, Robert Giffin, his sisters, and nephew, left Pennsylvania and headed out west. They settled in Winneshiek county, Iowa, purchasing land in sections 7 and 18 of Pleasant township, just south of Locust Lane, on May 3, 185511. Robert lived and prospered in this community for many years, working as a farmer and serving as Justice of the Peace. In about 1870 he moved to Freeport, a village just east of Decorah, Iowa. In 1884 he moved to Burr Oak, where he died two years later in 1886. Winneshiek county cemetery records show that Lydia Giffin died on April 26, 1860 12, and her sister Jane died several months later, on December 8, 1861. Both were buried at Freeport.
Obituaries from the Decorah Republican, Decorah, Iowa, relate further details about the Giffins.
Susan Giffin died at Freeport, Iowa, on February 7, 1884. Her obituary states that she was born on March 27, 1810, as was her twin brother Robert. At the age of five she moved to Pennsylvania with her parents. After her parents' death she moved to Locust Lane, Iowa, along with "her brother Robert and two sisters." She became a member of the Methodist church at the age of 23. The obituary extols her as a "consistent Christian; a great reader; a lady of culture and refined in manners; a good neighbor; a true friend; the light and sunshine of a lone brother's home, and a hearty welcomer of the weary itinerant." Her death is attributed to inflammation of the lungs. When asked whether she was ready to die, the report says that she responded, "Glad! Glad! The Lord is my Shepherd." And so she passed, at the home of her brother Robert Giffin in Freeport, Iowa.
Besides the birthdate discrepancy, it is interesting to note that the obituary names her as the twin sister of Robert, rather than Jane Giffin. This is confirmed by Winneshiek county cemetery records, which state that Robert and Susan Giffin were both born on March 20, 1810.
Robert Giffin's obituary states that he died on September 25, 1886, at the age of 77 years, 6 months, and 5 days, putting his birthdate at March 20, 1809. He was at that time living with his nephew Daniel Price in Burr Oak township, Winneshiek county, Iowa. Robert was born in Deering, Hillsboro county, New Hampshire. This account says that he moved to Pennsylvania with his parents when he was twelve years old. He came to Iowa in 1855, settled in Pleasant township (Locust Lane), and fifteen years later moved to Freeport, where he lived until the death of his sister in 1884. For the last two years of his life, he lived with his nephew Daniel Price.
Robert also was a Methodist for most of his life. The obituary relates an interesting account of his passing. "He remarked to one of his grandnephews Saturday evening," the story goes, "that he should awake in Heaven. They retired to rest in the usual manner, and in the night Mr. Price awoke and listened for the sounds deceased usually made while asleep. Not hearing these Mr. P. arose and went to his room. There he was found peacefully sleeping his last sleep, with his hands folded across his body, without the slightest evidence that death had been a struggle. His prediction had come true." Robert Giffin's remains were taken to Freeport, where the Methodist church conducted his funeral.
Daniel Price's third child, Robert Giffin Price, born in 1862, was named after uncle Robert Giffin. Robert Price took care of his uncle in his old age, and as a reward received a 160-acre farm in the Burr Oak area which his uncle Robert Giffin had owned13. This property was later passed down to his son Henry, and finally to Henry's son Dean Price, who lives there today (1994).
James Price's second wife Helena was born in New Jersey in 1804. As mentioned above, she first appears as James' unidentified wife in the 1835 census, and then appears by name as the administratrix of James' estate in 1845. She and James had three children, a daughter Lucy Ann Price, born in August, 1838, a son David, born in 1839, and a daughter Hannah E. Price, born on April 10, 1842. Hannah died in infancy on December 1, 1842. The 1860 census for Vestal township, taken on December 24, 1860, shows Helena living in the David Price household, along with daughter Lucy Ann. David was then 21 years old, Lucy was 22, and Helena was 56.
Deed records show that Helena purchased several tracts of land in the Vestal Center area between 1846 and 1855, probably neighboring on the James Price farm where she was still living. In 1861, however, she began making preparations for moving out of the state and joining her stepson Daniel in Winneshiek county, Iowa.
On March 18, 186114, Daniel Price and wife Nancy, in the presence of Justice of the Peace Robert Giffin, "set their hands and seals" to a document in which, for the sum of one dollar, they officially sold all interest and claim to the eleven acres of land owned and occupied by Helena Price15. About one month later, on April 17, 1861, this deed was recorded in Broome county, along with a second deed in which Helena sold the property, land "owned and occupied by James Price deceased", to a certain Samuel Platt Jr. of the state of California for the sum of $1850. Helena was not alone in transacting this deed16; as grantors are listed Helena Price, along with all of James Price's living children and their spouses (excepting Daniel and Nancy of Iowa): David Price, and Lucy Price of the town of Vestal, C. C. Hamlin and wife Lydia Price Hamlin of Great Bend, Pa., and William Price and wife Martha L. Price of Binghamton, New York.
Four months later Helena and David Price appear in Winneshiek county, Iowa. They settled in Canoe township, buying 120 acres in sections 22 and 29 of Canoe township from Joseph and Leah Brown for $140017. The deed was administered and witnessed by Justice of the Peace Robert Giffin.
They did not remain in their new home for long. For reasons unknown, the Helena and David Price property in Canoe township was sold to an Alfred Thompson seven months later on March 18, 1862 for $1400. After this, David Price disappears, and nothing more is heard from either Helena or Lucy until 1880. In the 1880 census widow Helena Price, 76 years old, and still unmarried daughter Lucy A. Price, 42 years old, are found living at 10 Court Street in Binghamton, Broome county, New York, along with a servant, two boarders, and a "niece" Jennie D. Lucy lived in Broome county until her death in 1916, but her brother David vanishes from the scene entirely. It may perhaps be speculated that David perished in the Civil War, which was raging at the time they left Winneshiek county.
In any case, it is an interesting footnote in the Price family history that Daniel Price's stepmother, half-sister, and half-brother were for a short time residents of Winneshiek county, and were most likely present to congratulate Daniel and Nancy Price on the birth of their third child, Robert Giffin Price, on January 12, 1862.
Vestal Center cemetery records show the grave of a Helen V. Price, born in 1804 and died in 1887.
County, Town, and Township Boundaries of Broome County, New York
When discussing our ancestor Daniel Price Sr. and his descendants, it is advisable to become familiar with the political boundaries of the area in which they lived.
When Daniel Price Sr. settled in New York in the late 1790's, his homestead was located in the town of Union in Tioga county. About 25 years later, this same locality was the village of Vestal Center in Broome county. This can be quite confusing at first, since it could appear that the Price family had been moving around to different towns and counties. Actually, just the names and boundaries of the localities had changed.
On February 16, 1791, Tioga county was formed, and comprised the present counties of Chemung, Tioga, and Broome. On March 28, 1806, the eastern part of Tioga county split off and became known as Broome county, named after the lieutenant-governor of the state, John Broome.
The town of Union was founded in 1791, on the same day as the formation of Tioga county. It comprised much of the area of present day Broome county. On January 22, 1823, the portion of the town of Union which lay south of the Susquehanna River was formed into the town of Vestal. Vestal Center is a small village in the town of Vestal, located on the Choconut creek, just a few miles south of the Susquehanna.
Towns and townships have a special meaning in the state of New York. A township means "a certain tract or territory with well known, fixed and definite bounds, that cannot be changed... Townships are of different dimensions, usually six or ten miles square, or that equivalent."
A town, on the other hand, is "a portion of a county, set apart for municipal purposes, and the boundaries can be changed at the pleasure of the legislature... A township may contain two or more towns, and a town may contain a half dozen townships, or a town can be formed of the parts of several townships."
In 1786 a part of Broome county was surveyed into eight townships, one of them called Sidney1. Sometime in the 1820's or 1830's, the name "Sidney" disappeared, and was replaced by "Vestal".
1) Western Tioga county became Broome county in 1806.
2) The southern part of the town of Union became the town of Vestal in 1823.
3) The township of Sidney became the township of Vestal.
4) Vestal Center is one of several small villages in the town of Vestal, in the township of Vestal.