Byron A. Curtiss has probably been engaged longer in business in Camden than any other merchant, and
throughout the entire period of his ownership and proprietorship has maintained a reputation for progressiveness,
indefatigable energy and unassailable integrity. The old Curtiss homestead farm north of Camden was his birthplace
and his natal day was June 26, 1844. His father, Ambrose Curtiss, was born on a farm north of Camden on the 26th
of March 1803, and in early life learned the trades of a carpenter and cabinet and furniture maker. He was married
on the 29th of December, 1825, to Miss Polly L. Sanford, who died December 16, 1863. Mr. Curtiss long survived
her, passing away on the 4th of November, 1880, when in the seventy eighth year of his age. In their family were
four daughters and a son but the daughters are all now deceased. After losing his first wife Ambrose Curtiss was
married, on the 20th of November, 1865, his second union being with Betsey Ann Brown, who is dead.
In 1858 when a youth of fourteen years Byron A. Curtiss, the only son, entered the employ of his father who in
that year formed a partnership with G. S. Wetmore, establishing business in the store in which W. H. Dorrance &
Sons are now located. With the exception of a short period spent in school at Fulton, Byron A. Curtiss has continued
in trade since he made his initial step in the business world. His training under his father was thorough and practical
and in 1865 he succeeded to his father's interest in the business, which he carried on in connection with his brother-in-law,
Mr. Wetmore, until 1870, under the firm name of Wetmore & Curtiss. The senior partner then withdrew but Mr.
Curtiss still remains in business at the old location and has a well appointed store, securing a large and carefully
selected Line of goods, while reasonable prices and courteous treatment of his patrons are factors in his growing
and substantial success.
On the 4th of November, 1867, Mr. Curtiss was united in marriage to Miss Philoma S. Wilson, of Camden, and unto
them were born two children: Mrs. Lillian O. Van de Walker of Camden, who was born February 16, 1873; and Harry
W., who was born February 16, 1876. Mrs. Curtiss passed away April 3, 1897, and her death was deeply regretted
by many friends as well as her immediate family.
Mr. Curtiss is interested in public matters to a considerable extent and his fellow townsmen, appreciative of his
worth and ability, have called him to the office of supervisor for two terms, while at different times he has served
on the village board of trustees and on the board of education. He also served on the county court house commission.
His efforts for the benefit of the community have been practical and effective and Camden values his citizenship
and public spirit. He is also well known as a loyal member of the Masonic fraternity and as a past master of his
History of Oneida County, New York
From 1700 to the present time
of some of its prominent men and pioneers.
By: Henry J. Cookinham
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
Oneida County, NY
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