Captain David Getman, Jr.




From "The Morning Herald", Gloversville, N. Y., 
Monday January 26, 1914, Vol. XVII No. 250, page 8


Death removes David Getman:  veteran of Civil War died yesterday morning:  had an eventful career:  organized military company, had successful business career and planned philanthropies.

David Getman, a prominent G. A. R. man, a real estate operator and known to a few friends as a philanthropist, died at his home 227 Kingsborough avenue, early Sunday morning after but a few days illness.  He was born in Ephrata, January 21, 1836, and was 78 years old.  He is survived only by his wife, Mrs. Helen Getman, and Edward C. Brown, who has been a member of his household for the past twenty-four years.  He had lived in Gloversville for the past seven years, having come here from Mayfield where he was engaged in stock raising.

The funeral will be held on Tuesday afternoon and will be attended by the members of the Masonic Lodge of which he was a member, and by members of Canby post G. A. R. of which he was also a member, and by a delegation from the Captain David Getman Jr., post of Sons of Veterans which was named in his honor.  Rev. Francis Berger of the Kingsborough avenue Presbyterian church will conduct the services.  Interment will be made in the family plot in the Mayfield cemetery.  Friends are requested not to send flowers.

The deceased has always led an active life, starting with the organization of a company which took part in the Civil War, continuing through his political activities, in the affairs of the town of Mayfield, and closing with the founding of an Old Ladies' Home which he had expected to open in a few months.

He was the son of David Getman of Mayfield, and the grandson of George Getman, who was a Captain in the Revolutionary was and a life long resident of Ephrata.  David Getman Sr., his father, came to Mayfield in 1846 and engaged in the mercantile trade, continuing until 1863 when he retired.  He was a justice of the peace for about twenty years and a member of the German Reformed Church to which he was a liberal contributor.  He died May 3, 1890.

David Getman, the deceased, was educated in the Kingsborough academy.  After finishing his education at the academy the Civil War broke out and he was among the first to answer the call for volunteers.  He not alone answered the call himself, but also organized a company of 100 volunteers in Mayfield which formed Company F in the seventh New York Volunteers.  In recognition of his services he was made lieutenant in the regiment.  He was later promoted to the rank of Captain and was assigned to the Tenth New York Cavalry, which was incorporated in the Army of the Potomac.

He participated in the battle of Brandy Station.  In this battle, his horse was shot from under him and he was taken prisoner and confined for eleven months in the notorious Libby prison.  Even in prison he was not allowed to remain inactive.  In July 186_ he drew lot for execution and was forced to defend the city of Charleston against the fire of the Union forces for sixty-four days.  From Libby prison he was moved to Columbia.  While there he, with four others, carried out a successful plot for escape.  Following escape he joined General Sherman's army, and finally reached his own command.  He was wounded in the battle of Brandy Station and even after he finished his service in August of 1865, the bullet wound in his arm gave him a great deal of trouble for two years.

When the war was over, he returned to Mayfield and engaged in stock raising.  Outside of his business he found time to engage in public affairs.  He was the leader in the movement for the incorporation of the village and after this was brought about, he was its first president serving one term which began in 1884.  He was a notary public and always a staunch Republican in politics.

On November 4, 1881, he married Helen Van Buren of Fultonville, Montgomery county.  The marriage was performed in Hornesville.  His bride is a descendant of Martin Van Burne, President of the United States, and was a sister to Cornelius and Martin Van Buren of Amsterdam and Mrs. Boyd Hudson of Fort Hunter.  He continued to raise fine stock on his farm in Mayfield until seven years ago when he retired from that activity.

His business as a horse breeder was lucrative and he invested his money mostly in Gloversville property.  He acquired two important parcels on North Main street one which is known as the Getman block and is now occupied by Martin & Naylor's department store.  The other is the block immediately joining on it the south, which was occupied for years by the Willoughby Co. store.  He also held property on Elm street.

When he was here about two years he purchased the building on East State street which has been occupied by the Gloversville Business College.  When he purchased this building it was his intention eventually to turn it into an Old Ladies' Home.  On account of the condition of the purchase he would be unable to carry out his objective for five years, when the lease held by the Business College would expire.  This will take place on April 1st of this year.  His death will not cause any changes to be made in the plans which he laid down for establishing of the home.

He will be buried in a plot in the Mayfield cemetery which he purchased some time ago for his family.  His purpose in acquiring a large plot was to make possible the erection of a soldiers monument.  He had made arrangements for the carrying out of the plans for the erection of this monument after his death.  The monument will be dedicated to the memory of the soldiers from Mayfield who took part in the Civil War under his or other commands. 

He was not directly affiliated with any church but he took an active part in the welfare of the churches of Mayfield and contributed to them liberally.  A part of the Methodist church in Mayfield was built at his expense.  He has contributed largely to churches and to charitable organizations since coming here, but did not court publicly, and consequently but little is generally known about his charitable works.  No appeal for any charitable purpose was made to him in vain.  Among his other contributions were several to the Nathan Littauer Hospital.

Since coming to Gloversville he had lead a quiet life and did not mix in public affairs.  His plan for the establishment of an Old Ladies' Home has met with very favorable reception and has been warmly commended as the home is a much needed institution.



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