Hiram File
Hiram File

Information on this page is from History of Rensselaer Co., New York by Nathaniel Bartlett Sylvester, published in 1880.

HIRAM FILE was born in the town of Brunswick, Rensselaer Co., N. Y., Dec. 18, 1828; the second child of Peter and Hannah (Hayner) File. His great-great-grandfather died on his passage to America. His wife, with two children, settled in Dutchess County, N. Y. John Malkert File, one of those children, and great-grandfather of Hiram, in 1761 moved to Brunswick, and was proprietor of the first inn kept in that town. It was located near where the Lutheran church now stands. Christopher File, his son, and grandfather of Hiram, was four years old when the family moved to Brunswick. He married Jane De Morest, by whom he had eight children - six sons and two daughters. Peter File, Hiram's father, was the youngest child but one, of these children. He was born in Brunswick, Dec. 29, 1802, and married Hannah Hayner, Dec. 30, 1826. They had six children, four of whom are living. The father has been a life-long farmer, but is now living with his son Hiram. The mother died in May, 1839.

Hiram File received his education in the district school in Brunswick, supplemented by two terms' attendance at the Normal School, at Albany. At the age of seventeen he commenced teaching, and altogether taught fifteen terms of school in the towns of Brunswick, Pittstown, Schaghticoke, and Lansingburgh. Doubtless in his capacity as teacher Mr. File is best known and will be longest remembered in these towns.

He was married, Feb. 20, 1862, to Margaret L. Wool, daughter of Benjamin B. and Sophia L. Wool. Mrs. File was born in Lansingburgh, Aug. 27, 1843. Her father was cousin of Gen. John E. Wool. The place in Lansingburgh where Mrs. File was born, and where her parents still live, has been held in the Wood family since its first settlement. Mr. and Mrs. File have had two children, viz., Benjamin W., born Nov. 18, 1862, living at home; Sarah Jane, born Nov. 5, 1864, died Oct. 25, 1876.

In the spring of 1862, Mr. File purchased of his father the homestead farm in Brunswick, which he carried on up to the year 1866. He then sold it and purchased of C. J. Stark fifty acres of land, including his present home, a flax and a saw mill, situated on the Tomhannock Creek, in the village of Raymertown, in Pittstown; he has also added a grist mill. Since 1866 Mr. File has devoted his attention to his milling interests. During the present year Mr. File has been making extensive improvements to his mills, including the construction of a stone dam, which has been pronounced on of the best in the State.

In politics he has been identified with the Republican party. During the late war he took an active part in raising the town's quota of men, signing, with other gentlemen, notes upon which the necessary funds were raised, relying upon a vote of the town for reimbursement. In 1875 he was elected justice of the peace, and still holds that office. Though not a member of any church, he is a contributor to the support of all the churches of his neighborhood.

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