Biography of Sylvester Dering
Oneida County, NY Biographies





Sylvester Dering, identified at different times with the practice of law, with manufacturing interests and now with the insurance business in Utica, was born in New York city but during his boyhood days was brought to Utica by his parents, Dr. Nicoll Havens and Frances (Huntington) Bering. At the usual age he entered the public schools and continued his studies in the academy in Utica, following which he pursued a course in civil engineering in the Sheffield Scientific School of Yale College, from which he was graduated with the class of 1859. Holding in view the purpose of engaging in the practice of law as a life work he then entered the Law University of Albany and received his degree in 1863. He then practiced his profession until 1866, when he turned his attention to the lumber and mill business in which he continued until 1888. In that year he removed to Malone, New York, where he conducted a paper and pulp mill for ten years. The different changes in his business connections represented a gradual development and growth in his business activities and opportunities and the success which for many years crowned his efforts permitted of his practical retirement upon his return to Utica. However, in the field of insurance he is still active.

At different times Mr. Dering has been prominent in connection with public service. In 1863 he served as adjutant of the Forty-fifth Regiment of the New York State National Guard and in August of the same year was appointed by Governor Horatio Seymour as brigadier general of the New York State National Guard, continuing in active service with the state militia for twenty three years. In local affairs his activity has constituted a force for public progress and improvement and his influence has always been found on the side of advancement and practical reform. For six years he was clerk of the commission for the erection of a new court-house in Oneida county and in 1863 and 1864 he represented the third ward of the city of Utica on the board of supervisors of this county.

Mr. Dering was married in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1864, to Miss Ella Virginia Bristol, a daughter of Willis Bristol, president of the New Haven County National Bank Two sons were born of this marriage: Nicoll Havens, now deceased; and Brinley Sylvester, at home. The social position of the family is a prominent one and Mr. Dering is a leading member of Fort Schuyler Chapter of the Sons of the Revolution. He joined the New York society in 1896, qualifying through his great-grandfathers, Thomas Dering and Benjamin Huntington, and is now regent of the local chapter. Mr. Dering is a member of the Oneida County Historical Society and was its treasurer for thirteen years. His entire life has been characterized by an orderly progression which has brought him from the field of limited undertaking to one of large activity in business circles and while never stimulated by a vaulting ambition he has not hesitated to venture where favoring opportunity has led the way.

From:
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
Chicago 1912


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