The Ellery Friends
by Chas. Alvan Hoag
The following is taken from The Centennial History of Chautauqua County
Volume II - Page 1145.
Published by The Chautauqua History Company, Jamestown, New York  1904.



    “The Collins (Erie County, New York,) monthly meeting of Friends, held the 4th of 6th M., 1824, 
accepted a removal certificate from Queensbury, (Glens Falls, Warren County, New York).
in behalf of Asahel Culver and wife Abigail, and their two sons Richard B. and James.
Also one from the same place and of the same date in behalf of Benjamin Gifford, his wife
Phoebe, and son Benjamin, and the meeting held 31st of 12th M., 1824, accepted a certificate
of removal also from Queensbury and of the same date in behalf of Benjamin Brown, his wife
Sarah and their children Eliza, Cornelia, Jedidah, Reuben C. and Desire. Prior to this, these
and several other Quaker families had settled in Ellery, which was within the compass of the
Collins monthly meeting.
On the 1st of 9th m., 1826, the monthly meeting acted on a request from several friends residing
In the Town of Ellery, Chautauqua County, New York, for the privilege of holding a meeting for
Worship in that place and Jonathan Soule, Nathaniel Sisson, Hugh McMiller and Eli Lapham in
conjunction with a committee of women friends were appointed to visit them and report their sense
at the next meeting, but not until the second meeting held 3rd of 11th M., 1826, did the committee
report that they had visited the Friends of Ellery to good satisfaction and believed it might be right to
allow them the privilege of holding a meeting for worship at the house of Asahel Culver. The monthly
meeting granted the request, the meeting for worship to be held on the first day of the week for six
months and to open on second 1st day of that month, under care of the following friends:
Stephen Lapham, John L. Eddy, Joshua Palmerton, David Pound, Jonathan Soule,
Stephen Sisson, and Richard Hallock. At the end of six months the committee reported that they
Had visited the Ellery meeting to satisfaction and it was allowed to continue.
After the meeting was well established it was held at the house of Benjamin Gifford until about
1845 and from that time on at the house of Levi Hoag. The regular meeting was discontinued in 1854
after the death of Desire, wife of Levi Hoag, and was held only at such times as a traveling minister
visited the section.
The Collins M. M. of 25-4M., 1833, accepted the certificate of Levi Hoag, his wife Desire
and their two minor children, Levi and Mary Ann with their adopted child, George Hoag,
(from Hartland Monthly Meeting, dated 26-2M., 1833). The monthly meeting of 28-2M., 1833,
accepted a certificate of Nehemiah Hull, his wife, Bathesheba, and four minor children, viz.,
Sarah, William, Mary Ann, and Mercy Jane. About 1840 Nehemiah with several of his children
returned to Erie County. The Hamburg M. M. held 30-5M., 1838, issued a certificate for
Moses Hambelton and Matilda, his wife with their children, Manly, Nelson, Phoebe,
Ann, Mary S., Sarah Jane, James M. and Henry.
The friends of Ellery were Orthodox with the exception of David and Justus Brown and their families,
who were Hicksites.
There was a meeting organized at Clear Creek, perhaps earlier than the Ellery meeting, but also ]
belonging to the Collins Monthly Meeting. The Ellery Friends often attended services at Clear Creek.
The death of Asahel Culver occurred while attending Quarterly meeting at Collins. ]
Other Ellery Friends present at this meeting were: Samuel Healy and Jedidah Hoag.
The following is a partial list of the heads of families who attended the Ellery Meeting:
Asahel and Abigail (Brown) Culver, Benjamin and Phoebe (Brown) Gifford, Tilson and Sarah Aldrich,
Joseph and Phoebe (Winslow) Sherman, Nehemiah and Bathsheba (Hoag) Hull, Morrison and
Phoebe (Brownell) Weaver, Benjamin and Sarah (Coffin) Brown, Thomas and Lydia (Brownell) Wing,
Levi and Desire (Gardner) Hoag, Samuel and Sarah (Glover) Healy, Moses and Matilda (Sherman) Hambleton.
These Friends were loyal to the Quaker Peace principles and refused to participate at general training or to pay fines for not appearing. Levi Hoag Jr., had a heifer taken by the Sheriff and sold to Luther Mason for twelve shillings to satisfy such a fine; and for refusing to pay a fine imposed for like reason, Russell Wing, son of Thomas and father of Judge Merritt Wing, of Chicago, was imprisoned in Mayville jail.
Jediah, wife of Levi Hoag Jr., was buried in June 1877, according to Friends’ customs and this is believed to have
been the last Quaker ceremony held in the Town of Ellery.”

Many of the above named persons are buried in the Lewis Cemetery in Town of Ellery.
While others are in the Bemus Point Cemetery.

Below are some found in Lewis Cemetery.

ALDRICH, Tillotson, died 6 Feb. 1858 age 83.
ALDRICH, Sarah, his wife, died 18 July 1871, age 84
ALDRICH, Ann H. (daughter), see Williams lot.

BROWNELL, Joseph Sr., died 10 June 1849, age 66.
BROWNELL, Phebe Smith (his third wife and widow) is probably here.
BROWNELL, Dr. Israel, (his son), born 16 July 1807, died 18 Nov. 1845 age 38.
BROWNELL, David (son-in-law of Joseph and son of Benjamin and Huldah (Bullock) Brownell, born Sand Lake, NY 2 July 1798) died Ellery 1 Dec. 1877.
BROWNELL, Thankful, his (first) wife, (and daughter of Joseph Sr., born Pittstown, 18 Oct 1805) died 9 April 1846, age 42.
BROWNELL, Prudence Jane, daughter of David and Thankful, born 16 April 1827, died 3 Nov. 1847.
BROWNELL, Lucinia, daughter of David and Thankful, born 6 Aug. 1829, died 15 Nov. 1847.

GIFFORD, Benjamin Sr. died 29 April 1883 age 65.
GIFFORD, Phoebe (nee Brown), wife of Benjamin Jr. 1839-1897.
GIFFORD, Delilah daughter of Benjamin Jr. and Phoebe, died 3 Feb. 1865, age 6.

HULL, Bathsheba (nee Hoag), wife of Nehemiah Hull, died 26 Aug. 1839, age 35.

HOAG, Levi Sr., died 1 May 1874, age 93.
HOAG, Desire (nee Gardner) his wife, died 13 Jan. 1854 age 76.
HOAG, Levi, Jr., died 13 Dec. 1879 age 63.
HOAG, Jedidah (nee Brown), his wife, died 5 June 1877, age 58.
HOAG, Charles A., son of Levi Jr. and Jedidah died 6 Jan. 1858, age 3.



SOURCE: Donna Mills, 2002.