Biography of Darius W. Lawrence
Franklin County, NY Biographies





Darius Watts Lawrence, born in Moira, February 19, 1822, was in business at an early age, and, forming a partnership a few years later with his cousin, Clark J., continued merchandising until 1867, when, yielding to persistent urging, he came to Malone to become cashier of the Farmers National Bank, of which he became president a few years later, and so remained until the day of his death, taking an active part in the management. The firm of D. W. & C. J. Lawrence was one of the strongest in the county, both in its individual composition and in the extent of its operations and of its resources. Each of the members had superior judgment, great energy and enterprise, and commanded the entire trust and confidence of the community. Their success was notable, each having accumulated a hundred thousand dollars or more before closing their Moira business. Mr. Lawrence filled a conspicuous part in the business life of Malone, his bank connection alone having been important, and other undertakings having also engaged his attention. He was one of the builders of the Ferguson House and Lawrence Hall in 1869, became a director of the Ogdensburg and Lake Champlain Railroad Co., was long a member of the village board of education, was heavily interested and actively occupied in the Lawrence Webster woolen mills, and for thirty years or more was a trustee of the Northern New York Institution for Deaf Mutes and its treasurer. Having the prestige of the Lawrence name, which meant much fifty or sixty years ago, particularly in the western part of the county, Mr. Lawrence was elected to the Assembly in 1851 and 1852 as a Democrat, and, for some reason unknown to the writer, was then known politically as "the Young Buffalo." Thereafter for a period of more than thirty years he was regarded as the most popular Democrat in the county, and was often drafted by his party as its candidate for one or another office, particularly for member of Assembly or county treasurer, whenever it was sought to make an especially telling canvass, or to conduct a determined drive against a Republican who was thought to be weak with the voters. Though himself usaally passive in such contests, and the county being strongly Republican, he nevertheless invariably made an excellent showing, and ran well ahead of his ticket. Personally Mr. Lawrence was one of the most estimable of men in the county, sagacious in judgment, public spirited, and upright in every walk of life. With grievous affliccions and sorrows thrust upon him, he yet seemed always genial, and radiated sunshine. He died suddenly November 26, 1913.

From:
Historical Sketches of Franklin County
and its several towns.
By: Frederick J. Seaver Malone, New York.
J. B. Lyon Company, Printers Albany, NY 1918.


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