The life record of Dr. Henry C. Palmer, of Utica, was brought to a close by the hand of death October 7, 1909,
and, although he had been in failing health for several years and his demise was not unexpected, the announcement
was the occasion of general sorrow. By years of conscientious and untiring devotion to the relief of the sufferings
of others he had gained a place in the estimation of the community accorded only to persons of unusual merit. He
was born at West Winfleld, Herkimer county, New York, February 14, 1841, a son of Walter and Rachel (Smith) Palmer,
who were members of prominent families of Herkimer county. Five of their children are now living: Vose W. and Luther
M., both of West Winfield; Charles J., a leading attorney of Little Falls; W. B., a well known physician of Utica
and Mrs. E. E. Walker, of Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Henry C. Palmer received his early education at West Winfield Academy and Cazenovia Seminary. He began the study
of medicine under his uncle, Dr. J. M. Rose, of West Winfield. Later he became a student in the medical department
of the University of New York and was graduated with the degree of M. D. in 1865. While the Civil war was in progress
in 1863 he was appointed assistant surgeon of a New York regiment and served in the Army of the Potomac near Washington.
He began practice at Westmoreland, New York, where he continued with marked success for ten years, at the end of
which time he moved to Rome and there built up an extensive clientage. In May, 1884, he attended lectures in the
hospitals of Vienna, Austria, and returning in 1885 settled at Utica. which he made his permanent home. He was
a hard worker, very attentive to his patients, and was one of the most successful physicians of Oneida county.
He served for a number of years on the consulting staff of Faxton Hospital and he and his wife furnished one of
the rooms in the institution. He was very much devoted to his profession and spared no efforts in keeping pace
with the discoveries in medicine and surgery in order that he might best serve his patients, by whom he was held
in high esteem.
On the 27th of June, 1867, Dr. Palmer was united in marriage to Miss Amelia H. Warner, a daughter of Austin and
Phoebe (Griswold) Warner and a sister of the late George H. Warner, of New York Mills. The father spent several
years at sea in a whaling vessel in his early manhood and then settled at Westmoreland, Oneida county, devoting
his attention to agriculture. He was married to Phoebe Griswold, a daughter of Samuel and Mary (Smith) Griswold,
one of the early settlers of Westmoreland. Politically Mr. Warner gave his support to the democratic party and
in religious belief was a faithful adherent of the Methodist church. Three sons were born to Dr. and Mrs. Palmer,
two of whom died in infancy at Westmoreland. The youngest son, Dr. Walter W. Palmer, attended the public schools
and was graduated from the Utica High School. Subsequently he attended the school at Lawrenceville and spent two
years in the Andover Preparatory School. He then entered the Sheffield Scientific School at Yale and following
his graduation therefrom spent several months traveling in Europe. He next became a student in the medical department
of the New York University, completing his course with the class of 1899. Soon afterward he began practice in New
York and later removed to Erie, Pennsylvania, where he specializes in the diseases of the nose and throat, in which
branch of practice he has been very successful and has gained much more than local renown. He wedded Miss Maria
C. Graves, a daughter of General J. C. and Augusta C. Graves.
Dr. Palmer was an active member of the Utica Medical Library Association and the Oneida County, New York and American
Medical Societies. He was a member of the Oneida Historical Society and of the Fort Schuyler Club. Fraternally
he was connected with the Masonic order, holding membership in Faxton Lodge, A. F. & A. M., Oneida Chapter
and Utica Commandery, K. T. In politics he was in sympathy with the republican party but never held public office.
He was for many years a faithful member of the First Presbyterian church. He visited Europe several times and traveled
quite extensively in that country. A man of culture and refinement, he attracted friends wherever he was known
and by a life of devotion to a high calling gained the confidence and love of his associates and to an unusual
degree the respect of all with whom he came in contact.
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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