Jarius Dickerman
Jarius Dickerman

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

JARIUS DICKERMAN. His ancestors were of English origin. His father Johathan Dickerman, was a native of Hamden, Conn.; was a well-to-do farmer in the town of Wallingford, New Haven Co., Conn., where he resided most of his life, and where he died. He was twice married, and reared a family of fourteen children, of whom Jairus was eldest, and was born in the town of Wallingford, May 10, 1797.

Mr. Dickerman spent his boyhood at home on the farm having very limited opportunities for obtaining an education from books, as frequently then, as now, parents placed a pecuniary value upon the time of their children before reaching their majority. His early struggle with circumstances was no exception to that of many who, at an early age, go into the busy world to carve out a fortune for themselves. At the age of fifteen he began an apprenticeship as stone-cutter, in New Haven, and served six years. At the close of his term of service, May 19. 1818. with less than one dollar in money, but with a resolution to succeed. and with willing hands, he went to West Stockbridge, Mass., where he arranged with Caleb Boynton, who afterwards became his father-in-law, for a stock of marble, to be paid for as soon as he had cut and sold it. With industry approaching hardship, and with economy bearing on self-denial, he had, at the end of the first year, cleared one hundred dollars. He remained at West Stockbridge for ten years, and carried on the marble business, and while there, March 12, 1819, married Phebe, daughter of' Mr. Boynton.

With a capital of a few hundred dollars. in 1828 he removed to Troy, N Y., where he rented some land on the corner of Fourth and Ferry Streets, of the heirs of the Van Rensselaer estate, and in partnership with Calvin Warner, a mason by trade, erected buildings and carried on the marble business for eight years.

Mr. Warner retiring from the firm, Mr. Dickerman bought the property and made more extensive preparations for his business by elaborate buildings, and by adding a steam-engine for the purpose of sawing and dressing marble,—the first engine used for that purpose in Rensselaer County,—an establishment known since as Dickerman's Steam Marble-Works.

Mr. Dickerman carried on the marble business successfully on this location until 1859, and retired from the active duties of life, leaving his marble-works in the hands of his son, Mark S. Dickerman, who still continues the business. Mr. Dickerman is a plain, unassuming man, and possesses that force of character, integrity of purpose, and conscientious regard of justice to all that commands the esteem of all who know him. He has been satisfied to lead a business life, and removed as far as possible from sectional strife and notoriety. He was formerly a member of the Whig party, and upon the formation of the Republican party adopted its principles. He has ever been interested in the prosperity of the city. For one year was a member of the Common Council for the Second Ward, and for two years he was supervisor of that ward, and he has also been a director of the Mutual National Bank of Troy for many years. For several years Mr. Dickerinan was one of the trustees of the First Presbyterian Church, and for the past twelve years he has been a member of that church.

Mrs. Dickerman died Jan. 12, 1838, aged forty years, and June 9, 1841, he married Mrs. Catherine E. Noyes, daughter of Capt. James Edgerton, of New London, Conn. She died Jan. 6, 1870, aged sixty-six. His children are Caleb S., Mark S., Mary Amelia, Mrs. Joshua C. Learned, of New London, Conn.; Mrs. Prof. Dascom Greene, of Troy, N. Y., and James Edgerton.

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