Hudson S. Graves, for a long period closely associated with the business interests of Rome, his activity contributing
to the enterprise and upbuilding of the city, was born at Skaneateles Junction, New York, March 31, 1853. His father,
Jerome Graves, was born in Marcellus, New York, January 3, 1829, and was a son of Salmon Graves. When Jerome Graves
was five years of age his parents removed with their family to Camillus, where he remained until twenty one years
of age. His education was acquired in the public schools and on attaining his majority he was employed on the New
York Central & Hudson River Railroad as agent at Skaneateles Junction. In 1856 he removed to Rome and was appointed
transfer clerk for the Rome, Watertown & Ogdensburg Railroad. transferring freight from the railroad to the
canal. Three months later he removed to Watertown. New York, where for six years he occupied the position of agent
for the same road. In 1862 he was returned to Rome and represented the company as agent here for twenty five years,
when he was retired at his own request. He then engaged in the carting business as a member of the firm of J. Graves
& Company. His political allegiance was given to the democratic party and he was somewhat active as a worker
in its ranks, his opinions carrying weight in its local councils. He was not a politician in the sense of an office
seeker, yet political pieferment was given him and in 1871 and again in 1878 he served as a member of the city
council. He was an active champion of the educational system of Rome and served as a member of the school board
for almost a decade. Fraternally he was connected with the Roman Lodge, No. 223, F. & A. M.; Fort Stanwix Chapter,
No. 153, R. A. M.; and Rome Commandery, No. 45, K. P. His religious faith was that of the Baptist church of which
he served as a deacon and trustee, and his life was at all times in harmony with his professions.
On the 18th of December, 1851, Mr. Graves was united in marriage to Miss Jane Waring, who died December 1, 1882.
They were the parents of four children: Jerome and George, who died in childhood; and Hudson S. and Norman K. The
death of the father occurred October 12, 1901, and all who know him felt regret at his passing, for his life had
been worthily spent and had impressed itself for good upon the community in which he lived.
Hudson S. Graves, whose name introduces this record, was a young lad when his parents established their home in
Rome, and his educational advantages were those offered by the public school. He entered the employ of the Rome,
Watertown & Odgensburg Railroad Company in the freight office and later was made yard master at this point.
During the year 1879-80 he was in charge of the freight yard at Watertown and in connection with his railway business
he became interested with his father and Henry Near, Sr., in the trucking business, which was carried on under
the name of Graves & Near for a number of years. At his father's death Hudson S. Graves took his place in the
firm and later Mr. Near sold out to Norman K. Graves, so that the firm name of Graves Brothers was assumed. Business
was carried on under that• style for a number of years with excellent success. Hudson S. Graves also became associated
in 1891 with B. S. Fox in the coal and wood business under the style of Fox & Graves. In all business connections
and transactions he enjoyed the confidence of every one with whom he had dealings and was highly esteemed because
of his conscientious purpose and honorable principles. He was never known to overreach another in a business transaction,
preferring rather to suffer loss than to cause another to lose by any act on his part. His business is still carried
on by his widow and son in law, James H. Hooke.
On the 25th of December, 1878, Mr. Graves was united in marriage to Miss Kate L. Bennett, a native of New Jersey,
and to them was born a daughter, Margaret J., who is now the wife of James H. Hooke, of Rome. Hudson S. Graves
was a member of Roman Lodge, No. 223, F. & A. M., Fort Stanwix Chapter, No. 153, R. A. M., and Rome Commandery,
No. 45, K. T. He was also a number of the Baptist church, and was one of the trustees of the church at the time
of his death which occurred October 17, 1902. Throughout the greater part of his life he had been a resident of
Rome and his fellow citizens knew him as a man of genuine worth, worthy of the high regard that was uniformly given
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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