Roberts, Edward
as found in
HISTORY OF
BENNINGTON COUNTY, VT


WITH ILLUSTRATIONS AND BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES
OF SOME OF ITS PROMINENT MEN AND PIONEERS.

EDITED BY
LEWIS CASS ALDRICH
1889



ROBERTS, EDWARD. The subject of this brief sketch was born in Man chester, at the Roberts homestead, on the 23d day of March, 1812, and was the fifth child born to Martin and Betsey (Stone) Roberts. Burdened with a large family of children, and not being largely possessed of this world's goods, it was impossible for the parents to make advances of money to start their sons in business, but what proved more to their welfare, each was given as good an education as the means of the parents could afford. Edward was naturally inclined to books, and started out in life with the determination to enter a profession, but in this his expectation was balked, and he was then obliged to engage in mercantile pursuits; but with him professional life, while it may have been more in accord with his taste, could not have been more successful than that calling which circumstances compelled him to adopt

In the spring of 1827. then being just past his fifteenth year, Edward Roberts left home and went to Rutland, where he engaged with his cousin, E. C. Purdy, esq., in the printing office of the Rutland Herald. Here he remained some two years, and until the fall of 1829, when he went to Fishkill-on-theHudson and entered the Highland Grove Gymnasium, a classical preparatory school, then under the charge of Rev. B. Kent, a brother-in-law of our subject. Having applied himself diligently to his studies, and engaged in teaching when not so occupied, young Roberts was prepared for a still higher education, and in the latter part of the summer of 1831 he entered Williams College for the regular classical course. Unfortunately, however, his college course was abruptly terminated by a severe attack of infiatnatory sore eyes and dyspepsia of such a nature as to compel a cessation of study and retirement from the institution, and to effect a radical change in the plans for the future therefore mapped out. But he was quite unwilling at once to yield up all hope of completing his education and entering professional life, and the succeeding ten years found him engaged in travel and teaching, devoting such time to study as he could bear, but without instructors other than the best text-books. Especially was he devoted to Greek, Latin, Hebrew and some of the modern languages, the knowledge of which he has kept up, a great solace to him, and refuge from the cares and vexations of an unusually busy life.

But the ten years at length passed, and his old difficulty continuing in a threatened chronic form, Mr. Roberts reluctantly abandoned his cherished hopes of a professional life, and in 1841 went to New York City and settled down to business life. Subsequently he became a silent, and finally a general methber of the firm of Roberts, Cushman & Co., for many years one of the leading houses in that city engaged in importing hatter's material, supplies, etc., and to-day Mr. Roberts' name is in the old firm established so many years ago, and he still retains an extensive interest therein, although his time is mostly devoted to the care and development of the large real estate interests of which he is possessed. Still our subject finds time each summer to visit his old home in Manchester, of which he is now, and has been since 1849 the owner; and here, surrounded by family and friends, he passes the heated season in quiet enjoyment under the protecting branches of the magnificent old elms that gave him their shade in boyhood days.

In 1840, the year next preceding that in which he entered business life in the great metropolis of our country, Edward Roberts was united in marriage with Lucy Maria Benjamin, daughter of Hon. Nathan Benjamin, of South Egremont, Mass. Of this marriage three children were born as follows: Nathan B. Roberts, June 25, 1841; Edward A. Roberts, May 18, 1843; Gardner B. Roberts, November 12, 1844, died March 7, 1845. Lucy Maria, his wife, having died January 26, 1845, on April 27, 1847, Mr. Roberts was married to Miss Irene B. Robinson, daughter of Royal Robinson, M.D., of Braintrim, Pa. Of this second marriage have been born eight children as follows: Genevieve Roberts, May 15, 1848, died September 16, 1887; Jessie Roberts, January 3, 1850, died December 6, 1887; Christopher H. Roberts, January 27, 1852; Irene Roberts, May 17, 1854, died May 9, 1857; Lucy Roberts, June 1, 1856; Walter Roberts, April 3, died June 8, 1859; William R. Roberts, June 26, 1860; Fanny, August 11, 1862, died March I 3, 1864.


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