52 Ancestors: Ogden Talmadge Seward #6

I feel almost like I’m cheating, writing about Ogden Talmadge again. He was mentioned already in an earlier post about his grandfather William Seward. The theme of this week though, is Names and he has one of my favorite names among my relatives.

He got his name from his father Philander’s two lawyers who helped him settle his father’s estate. Ogden grew up on the family farm in New Hackensack, New York, a [township?] in Dutchess county near the Hudson river. He was educated at Williston Seminary in Easthampton, Massachusetts from age 16 to around age 20 .

After his schooling was done, he moved to Elgin, Illinois and worked as a banker. Elgin was likely where he met his wife Ada Douglass, who had moved there from Rochester, NY with her family sometime after the 1855 New York State census and before her marriage in September 1859.

I found a book on Archive.org titled Commemorative Biographical Record of Dutchess County, New York by J. H. Beers & co. It has biographical sketches of Ogden and several of his brothers and sister, describing their character, places of employment, where they lived and other interesting details. It also mentions that sister Amelia died at fourteen, that brother Philander George also died at an early age, and that brother Maurice suffered from ill health. It left out the name of the illness causing so much suffering; consumption, or tuberculosis as it is called now.

Of the six children in the Seward family, only one, James Adis, appears to have escaped the family curse.* Ogden lived three years after his marriage to Ada and died in 1862, only 24 years old. Ada held on a bit longer and died at the age of 38. They had two children, my great-grandfather Ora Philander Seward and a daughter Susan who died at age three. Ora P. was raised by his aunt, uncle and grandmother and encouraged to spend time outdoors getting fresh air.

* Brother William Henry may have also been that fortunate, but according to the book, he took a trip to Texas and drowned while there at age 25.


J. H. Beers & Co, Commemorative biographical record of Dutchess County, New York (Chicago: J. H. Beers & Co., 1897); digital images, Archive.org (https://archive.org/stream/commemorativebio00beers : accessed 23 July 2017), 347-348.

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