Biography of Charles C. Rich
Franklin County, VT Biographies





Rich, Charles Wright, who lived for fifty years on his farm in Swanton, Vt., midway between St. Albans and Swanton villages, came here from Richville, in the town of Shoreham, Vt., in 1840. He was the son of Judge Davis Rich and the grandson of Charles Rich, the latter of whom had come among the pioneers to Shoreham with his father and uncle from Warwick, Mass., in 1785, and who was a member of Congress from 1813 until his death in 1824. Charles W. Rich was born March 29, 1817, and died August 27, 1889. In 1836 he graduated from the University of Vermont (where he was a classmate of Bishop Bissell, and a college mate of Alexander Mann and of Henry J. Raymond), and afterwards taught school in Plattsburgh and practiced civil engineering, during which time he helped survey a line for a railroad projected through the wilderness in the northeastern part of New York state, but which was never built. Impelled by a fondness ford country life, which he always retained, he determined to devote himself to farming, and after some time spent in searching for a locality commending itself to his taste, in surroundings of natural beauty, he bought the farm of Dead. Benjamin Pay. In 1847, having found thereon an abundant store of lime rock, he built kilns and commenced burning lime for sale to his neighbors, his trade extending through the county. Four years later the Vermont Central Railroad was built, and its course lying through his farm the new facilities for transportation brought additional trade, and a few years later lime burning had become his principal vocation, although he always preferred to be styled a farmer, and made various additions to his original farm from time to time. He was very active in business, for in addition to the lime burning he established and ran for a number of years barrel stock and shingle mills in Ellenburgh and Mooers, N. Y., and was the first in this part of the country to engage in pressing and shipping hay. Subsequently he ran hay presses in Canada, and engaged in the manufacture of straw paper at Au Sable Chasm, N. Y. He never aspired to public office, and discouraged his friends from using his name in connection with politics, although he took an active interest in all matters of public good, and contributed freely to public and private charities. He was an unusally kind hearted and genial man, and had a mind well stored with information, to which he added constantly by reading and study. His first wife was Julia E. Parker, daughter of John G. Parker; of Rochester, N. Y. whom he married in 1854 and by her had two children, Charles and John Parker. In 1863 he married Mrs. Louisa H. Hayden, daughter of Benjamin R. Harwood, of Boston, by whom he also had two children, Ellen Harwood and Robert Davis. His second Wife, with John P. and Ellen H., still survive him.

From:
History of Franklin and Grand Isle Counties Vermont
Edited by: Lewis Cass Aldrich
D. Mason & Co., Publishers
Syracuse, N. Y.
1891


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