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Seymour Chipman


Posted By: S. Ferrall, IAGenWeb volunteer
Date: 9/27/2015 at 17:37:35

Seymour Chipman - A widely known and prominent citizen of Corvallis and a veteran of the late Civil War, the brief life record of Seymour Chipman affords an excellent example for young men just entering the field of business activity, well illustrating the virtue of patriotism and showing the success to be attained by industry, enterprise and thrift.

The representative of an old New England family, he was born June 30, 1833, in Essex, Chittenden County, Vermont, a son of John Chipman. On the paternal side he comes of English ancestry, his great grandfather, Jonathan Chipman, having been born and bred in England, where he learned the hatter's trade. Subsequently emigrating to this country, he purchased land in Essex, Vermont, and by strenuous labor cleared a homestead from the wilderness.

Thomas Chipman, the grandfather of Seymour Chipman, spent his entire life in Essex, Vermont, being industriously engaged in farming pursuits. During the war of 1812, he offered his services to his country, and at the memorable battle of Plattsburg was captain of one of the companies in a prominent regiment. He took an active part in town affairs, and was a leading member of the Baptist Church.

John Chipman was born in Essex, Vermont, in 1798, and there spent the first half of his long life. Coming into possession of a part of the ancestral homestead, he carried on general farming, and also worked at the carpenter's trade. Removing with his family to Illinois in 1843, he lived near Rockford for nine years, then took up his residence six miles north of Belvidere. In 1852, he migrated to Iowa, locating in Clayton county, near Strawberry Point, where he owned and operated a saw-mill and a grist-mill.

Later, in company with his son, Seymour Chipman, he settled in Pocahontas county, Iowa, and lived there until his death, at the age of eighty-four years. His wife, whose maiden name was Harriet Hoadley, was born in Vermont, a daughter of Thomas Hoadley. Mr. Hoadley, who was of Welsh descent, was born and reared in Vermont. In 1843, he removed to Illinois, but after living in the Prairie state a few years he returned to his old home in Vermont, and there spent the remainder of his life, dying at the advanced age of ninety-seven years. Three boys and four girls were born of the union of John and Harriet (Hoadley) Chipman, and with the exception of two daughters all are now living.

All of the sons served in the late Civil War, LaFayette, now a resident of Pocahontas county, Iowa, having served in the First Minnesota Heavy Artillery, while Horace, who resides in Calhoun county, Iowa, served in the Second Minnesota Infantry. The mother died at a venerable age in Minnesota.

Seymour Chipman, the oldest son of the parental household, was a lad of ten years when he accompanied his parents to Illinois, making the long trip from Vermont by horse-teams. After completing his early education in the district schools he assisted his father in improving a farm, and during the harvest seasons was employed in threshing.

Removing to Clayton county, Iowa in 1852, he was at first engaged in milling as proprietor of a saw-mill and a grist-mill, and subsequently operated a carding-mill and a woolen-mill.

On August 11, 1862, Mr. Chipman enlisted in Company B, Twenty-first Iowa Infantry, and on being mustered into service at Dubuque, Iowa, was elected fifer of the regiment. He took an active part in many important engagements, among the more notable being the battle at Port Gibson, on May 1, 1863, and the siege of Vicksburg, which was concluded by the capitulation of that city on July 4, 1863. The following month Mr. Seymour was taken seriously ill, and, on his return to the army, was transferred to the Veteran Reserve Corps, with which he was actively identified until the close of the conflict, serving in the commissary department at Camp McClelland, Davenport, Iowa. On June 28, 1865, he was mustered out of service and returned home.

Establishing himself in business as a black-smith and carriage manufacturer at Strawberry Point, Mr. Chipman remained there successfully employed until 1881. Going then to Gilmore City, Iowa, he was there engaged in agricultural pursuits for four or more years, after which he embarked in the hotel business, which he carried on until 1890. Coming then to Oregon, Mr. Chipman located first near Forest Grove, where he purchased a claim, on which he resided about two years. In 1893, he settled at his present home in Corvallis, where he has since exerted a marked influence in advancing the various enterprises inaugurated to develop its resources and promote its prosperity. During his active career he has accumulated a competency, being the owner of much valuable property in different parts of Oregon and of a good farm in Greenwood county, Kansas.

On August 14, 1853, at Strawberry Point, Iowa, Mr. Chipman married Prudence Maxson, who was born in Clark County, Ohio, which was likewise the birthplace of her father, Ephraim Maxson, and the lifelong residence of her grandfather, Jesse Maxson. Ephraim Maxson, a farmer by occupation, removed from Ohio to Indiana, thence to Michigan, and finally to Iowa, locating on a farm in Clayton county, Iowa where he resided until his death, at the age of fifty-three years. He married Mary Smith, whose father, Peter Smith, died in Michigan. Ten children blessed their union, three of whom are now living. One son, David Maxson, who in the Civil War was a member of the regiment to which Mr. Chipman belonged, died while in the service of his country. Another son, Christian Maxson, is now a merchant in Edgewood, Iowa.

Mr. and Mrs. Chipman are the parents of five children, namely: Mrs. Eva Moyer, of Gilmore City, Iowa; Charles, of Corvallis; Clarence, proprietor of a restaurant and bakery in Corvallis; Mrs. Lillian Theresa Simpson, of Portland, Oregon; and Vidella, wife of F. L. Miller, of Corvallis.

On August 14, 1903, Mr. and Mrs. Chipman celebrated their golden wedding. Mr. Chipman met his friends at the door and received them with a hearty handshake and word of welcome. They passed into the parlor, where Mrs. Chipman, as active and light of heart as a girl of sixteen, expressed her pleasure at their presence. Here all registered, and, after partaking of the contents of the punch bowl, presided over by Mrs. Clarence Chipman, passed out onto the lawn where they were served with lunch. Mr. and Mrs. Chipman were the recipients of many handsome presents. The Mystic Shriners presented him and his wife with a beautiful loving cup. Upon it was inscribed the names of the donors, S. L. Kline, H. W. Hall, W. E. Yates, S. L. Hayes, Rev. MacLean, S. N. Wilkins, T. H. Crawford, Captain Harding and J. B. Horner. The presentation speech was made by Mr. Crawford. Mr. and Mrs. Chipman made fitting response and each Noble drank to their health from the loving cup.

Politically, Mr. Chipman is a stanch Republican, and while living in Iowa served sixteen years as justice of the peace, and was mayor of Gilmore City at the time of his removal to Oregon. Fraternally, he was made a Mason at Strawberry Point, Iowa, in 1862, and is past master of Strawberry Point Lodge, F. & A. M.; and past high priest of Ferguson Chapter, No. 5, R. A. M., of Corvallis, of which he is treasurer; he is a member of Corvallis Lodge, F. & A. M., of which he is a past master; a member and thrice illustrious mast of Oregon Council, No. 2, R. & S. M.; is deputy Grand Master of the Grand Council of Royal and Select Masters of Oregon; and a member of Albany Commandery, K. T., while in June, 1903, he became a member of the Mystic Shrine of Oregon. He is a member, and past commander, of Ellsworth Post, G. A. R., and in 1902 was junior vice commander of the Department of Oregon.

Mrs. Chipman is a prominent member of the W.R.C., of which she is an ex-president and of the W. C. T. U.

~Portrait and Biographical Record of the Willamette Valley, Oregon: Containing Original Sketches of Many Well Known Citizens of the Past and Present; Chapman Publishing Company, 1903 - Willamette River Valley (Oregon), pages 1155-1157


Clayton Biographies maintained by Sharyl Ferrall.
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