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Warren County Bicentennial

Middle of Bakers Mills, around 1900 - 1910

Benjamin Clapp Butler

Lawyer, Entrepreneur, Surveyor, Editor, Churchman, Politician, served in the Military — Lt. Colonel was all of these. Born in 1821 in Oxford, N.Y to James Clapp and Julia Hyde Butler Clapp. His mother died when he was twelve years old. Leaving five children and a very unhappy father he lived with his grandparents Dr. Benjamin Butler and Hannah Avery Butler. Their only son Benjamin had died in infancy. Dr. Butler wanting an heir adopted his grandson and his name was changed from Benjamin Butler Clapp to Benjamin Clapp Butler in the NY State Legislature. He was educated at Oxford Academy and went to Saratoga and completed his studies in the Legal Profession. For several years he was editor and proprietor of the Saratoga Sentinel. He came to Luzerne in 1845. Served as Supervisor of the Town of Luzerne, and a member of the New York State Assembly, organized the Warren County Agricultural Organization H worked diligently to get the Delaware and Hudson Railroad to Hadley.

When the Civil War started he volunteered and started to raise a regiment and enlisted more than half of the men in the 93rd New York Volunteer and served as a Lt. Col. During the entire War it is reported that he said if he lived thru the War he would work on building a church. He worked at speaking engagements and received donations from guests of the Wayside Inn toward the building of St. Mary's Church Episcopal Church. The Church has many beautiful windows including one for the Civil War. Col. Butler loved the beauty of Lake Luzerne and promoted it in many brochures and books. He also had a dream of building a hotel. Much of the land around the lake was owned by the Butlers, Clapps, Newberry's and the Pierponts and also from Summit Place to Pierpont Road. In 1869 he started the building of the Wayside Inn. The main structure was modeled after the architecture of Luzerne. Col Butler died in 1882 in Utica, NY and is buried in the Luzerne Cemetery.


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