Mrs. James Mambert
Mrs. James Mambert

The following biography is from a newspaper article submitted by Vickie M. Nelson.

Eagle Mills Woman, Turning 100 Today, Rates 'Horse and Buggy' Era Second Best--Mrs. James Mambert Looks With Kindly Favor on Modern Generation. The dawn of a new year brings the dawn of a new century for Mrs. James Mambert, native Trojan and a resident of Eagle Mills, who notes her 100th birthday this New Year's Day with a profound faith in the future.

The modern world and the younger generation are fine, Mrs. Mambert thinks, and those who cry decadence get no sympathy from her. The horse and buggy day and the candlelight were nice, Mrs. Mambert admitted, but the radio, electric lights and the motor car are better by far.

She registered few complaints against the youth of today.

"I can't bring myself to feel that young girls should smoke," the centenarian confessed. "It really doesn't look nice." The bare legs of the modern athletic young woman draw her displeasure also. Otherwise youth of today has her blessings and best wishes.

A woman with an active mind that always searched through public affairs of the day and spiced them with a sharp wit, Mrs. Mambert sat surrounded with hundreds of congratulatory letters, telegrams and flowers from widely scattered friends for today's birthday. At the close of a century of life, having reached a day which she confessed to having looked forward to for years, the pioneer looked back to the days when Troy was a small town and the nation a struggling republic.

On New Year's Day, 1838, President Martin Van Buren, a New York Democrat, sat in the White House, put there by less than a million and a half popular votes from 26 states. Twenty-three presidents have occupied the White House since. In the same year the first transatlantic steamships with names like the "Great Western," British Queen" and "Sirius" stirred the world with mad dashes across the Atlantic in 15 days.

While she was cutting her teeth the first telegraph line was strung between Washington and Baltimore and shortly after the United States declared war on Mexico. While a girl in her 'teens and the pantalettes of the period, the river packet trade up and down the Hudson viewed with alarm the opening of the first track of the New York Central, from New York to Albany.

Since then the world has moved apace and ever more interestingly, Mrs. Mambert feels, and she has made every effort to keep abreast of it. Her daughter with whom she lives in Eagle Mills, Mrs. Minnie Elizabeth Winship, daily reads the news of the moment to her.

A voter - staunchly Republican - ever since women won the right, politics interest her immensely. She missed the last election though, her first omission.

While Mrs. Mambert will not admit to any set rule for longevity, her family attributes her great age and splendid health to plain common sense - in the form of moderate exercise, plenty of sleep, good food, a regard for things sacred and a sense of humor.

She rarely leaves her home in the cold of the winter months, but is constantly about the house with the aid of a cane, a useful article for occasional rheumatic twinges, preparing articles in the kitchen and wiping the dishes. In summer she is accustomed to take short walks and visit her neighbors.

Her son-in-law, Dr. Frank A. Winship of Eagle Mills, finds her physical condition sound but for a slight impairment in sight and hearing. With Mrs. Minnie Winship, her four other daughters, Mrs. Clarence H. Bulson and Mrs. Jessie M. Soule of Eagle Mills, and Mrs. George F. Harder and Mrs. Cora K. File of Albany, alternate in being constantly with her.

But Mrs. Mambert likes to be independent of any aid, and with the privilege of age, does much as she please. She loves to take cat naps, and often goes to bed whenever the mood strikes her for a rest, visitors or no.

Mrs. Mambert has always shown a keen interest in the affairs of the Eagle Mills Methodist Church, of which she has been a member for sixty years, ever since her residence in Eagle Mills, and at one time was an active worker in the Ladies Aid Society of the church.

Mrs. Mambert has always resided in the Troy Area. Born in Troy Jan. 1, 1838, she was married by the Methodist pastor in Pittstown and lived in Cropseyville for a time before moving to Eagle Mills, where she has lived in the same home for sixty years. Her husband died 18 years ago at the age of 87.

Members of the immediate family plan to gather at the Eagle Mills home today to cut a very special birthday cake with the head of the house as guest of honor on her 100th birthday anniversary.

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Debby Masterson

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