Biography of Henry Watkins
St Lawrence County, NY Biographies

Watkins, Henry, Potsdam, was born in Rutland, Vt., in October, 1819. He graduated from Middlebury College and came to Potsdatn to reside about 1842. Here he entered St. Lawrence Academy as professor of mathematics and remained in this position for several years. In 1841 he engaged in the foundry business, later forming a partnership with Charles W. Leete in the hardware trade. In 1363 Messrs. Watkins & Leete purchased an interest in the saw mill property on the west side of the river, and continued business together in both these branches of industry until 1872, when the partnership was dissolved, Mr. Leete taking the hardware and foundry, and Mr. Watkins the saw mill property with which he was connected until his death. When the movement was started to secure the location of one of the State Normal Schools in this village, Mr. Watkins entered into it heart and soul. He was active and untiring in all the plans, details and management connected with the building of this great and beneficent institution. As a fit recognition of his services he was made President of the first local board appointed for the school, and continued to hold the position until his death, His interest in this institution never for a moment flagged, and every movement for its advancement and success received his earnest and effective support. Mr. Watkins was a member of the Presbyterian church, with which he united early in life. He took an active part in the building of the present church edifice of that society in this village. He was one of the solid and substantial business men of the place, and Lot' half a century was closely identified with the social, tnoral and material life and growth of Potsdam. He died in Potsdam, March 29, 1891, of typhoid pnenmonia in his seventy second year.

Our County and it's people
a memorial record of St. Lawrence County, New York
Edited by: Gates Curtis
The Boston History Co., Publishers 1894


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