Senator Oliver Wolcott Crary View All Years

Compiled Historical Information
Date of Death: 8/19/1903
Party Affiliation: Republican
Assemblies Served:
Senate: 14 (1872) - 15 (1874)
Home County: Clayton
Oliver Wolcott Crary
Clayton County
An old and honored citizen of Farmersburg Township. He was born December 21, 1819, in Preston, Conn., and is the youngest son of Elisha and Abigail (Avery) Crary. He was reared on a farm, receiving his early education in the district schools of his childhood's home, but later attended the Plainfield Academy, where he finished his education. While there he prepared himself for a teacher. He remained at home until twenty-nine years of age, teaching during the winter months and assisting his father on the farm in summer. He taught his first school at the early age of sixteen years. In 1848 our subject started out to seek a home in the far west. He with another young man made the journey in a buggy, going first to New Haven; from there they went to Poughkeepsie, then to Albany and through western New York, continuing their journey westward through Pennsylvania and northeastern Ohio. At this point his partner became homesick and sold his interest in the horse and buggy to the Judge and returned to Connecticut. The Judge, however, being more plucky, would not turn back but determined to push forward and find a suitable place to make his home. He sold the buggy and went on horseback to Iowa. Being convinced that this was the garden spot of America, he selected the land and laid out the farm on which he now resides. He went to Prairie du Chien, and buying a load of lumber, built a home during the winter, but in the spring he moved his little board shanty to the site of his present fine residence. In 1849 our subject returned to Connecticut, and in July of the same year was united in marriage with Miss Charlotte E. Borrows, a daughter of Seth and Anna (Stark) Borrows, all natives of Connecticut. She passed away in 1864, leaving a husband but no children to mourn her loss. Judge Crary was married the second time in April, 1864, to Miss Agnethe Thovson, a native of Norway. Politically Judge Crary is a Republican, but before the organization of that party he was a stalwart Whig. He was elected County Judge in 1857 and served as such until 1860. In the fall of 1871 he was elected to the State Senate, serving four years. He was a member of the Committee on Ways and Means during the whole of his term. Fraternally he is a member of the Masonic order at Farmersburg.