Biography of Matthew Wierd
FROM: History of Livingston County, New York
By James H. Smith
Assisted by Hume H. Cole
Published By D. Mason & Co. 1881


Matthew Wiard

Matthew Wiard, the subject of this sketch, was born in the town of Avon, Livingston county, Sept. 8, 1813. He is the fourth son of Thomas Wiard. who came from Waterbury, Conn., about the veer 1802,. and located at Geneseo, where he commenced farming and afterwards carried on blacksmithing in the village. After remaining there two years he purchased a farm in the town of Avon. to which he removed, and carried on farming, blacksmithing and the manufacture of plows. He was the first Supervisor of the town of Avon. performing the duties of that office in the years 1821, ‘22. ‘29, ‘30 and '35. and was also Justice of the Peace for many years. His first wife was Susan Hall, a native of Waterbury, Conn., by whom he had ten children, as follows: William, (deceased) Margaretauy, (deceased) Seth Rachel E., (deceased) Thomas, Mary Ann, Caroline, (deceased) Matthew, Henry and George, (deceased) His second wife was Nancy Gansen, of Genesee county, by whom he had three children, viz.: Nancy J . Louisa, (deceased,) and Elizabeth. He died in 1837, at the age of 67 years.

Matthew lived at home, working on the farm and attending the district school—the only advantage for an education he ever enjoyed—until about twenty - two years of age. when he and his elder brother, Thomas, took the hotel at East Avon, which had been kept for many years previously by William T. Hosmer, one of the early settlers in the town. He continued there until about the year 1852, when he sold the house—having purchased it after his father’s death—and engaged in the manufacture of plows, then and now known as the “Wiard Plow,” and which obtained a world - wide fame for its superior excellence. The plow now manufactured in Syracuse, and known as the “Syracuse Chilled Plow,” is an outgrowth of the Wiard Plow, and was first made from a set of patterns sold by Matthew Wiard to John S. Robinson, of Canandaigua. Mr. Wiard sold out his interest in 1870, and about 1876 the manufactory was removed to Batavia. N. Y. Mr. Wiard has since followed farming in a small way and speculating in real estate, but considers himself as retired from active business. He has been elected to many of the offices in the gift of the people of his town and county. He was Supervisor in 1858, '59, '60 and '76. In 1861 and ‘62 he represented his county in the State Legislature. has been Justice of the Peace nearly twenty years. holding that office at the present time, and has been Notary public about ten years. In politics Mr. Wiard was an old line Whig until the Republican party was formed, with which he united and has given an intelligent and firm support to its principles and measures. During the late war he was one of the first enrolling officers appointed for the town of Avon by the Governor. He is a staunch and true friend to those who prove themselves worthy. By a life of industry and honest dealing he has secured a competence, and it is agreed by all who know him that in their social and business relations with him they have ever found him a man of sterling fidelity.

(Also see the Bio. of George Wierd in Genesee County)

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