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Biographical Review: Greene, Schoharie and Schenectady Counties, New York
Alexander MacMillen

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[This information is from pp. 173-175 of Biographical Review Volume XXXIII: Containing Life Sketches of Leading Citizens of Greene, Schoharie and Schenectady Counties, New York (Boston: Biographical Review Publishing Company, 1899). It is in the collection of the Grems-Doolittle Library of the Schenectady County Historical Society at 920 BIO.]

Alexander MacMillen, one of the most influential citizens of Carlisle, Schoharie County, was born in Bethlehem, Albany County, N. Y., on October 4, 1842, son of James and Ellen N. (Waldron) MacMillen. His great-grandfather MacMillen was a Scotch emigrant who settled in Albany. His grandfather, who resided in New Scotland, N. Y., died there at eighty-six years of age. He was a farmer and a leading politician among the old-time Whigs. He occupied prominent civil offices, such as those of Supervisor and Collector, and was one of the active and influential members of the Presbyterian church. He had a family of eleven children, seven sons and four daughters, all of whom are now deceased. They were: John, Andrew, James, Henry, Alexander, William, Aaron, Mary, Nancy, Catherine, and one whose name is not remembered. Of these, James, father of Alexander MacMillen, was the only one that settled in this county. Most of these brothers were Republicans politically, and were associated with the Presbyterian church. James, however, was a Methodist. He was a quiet, conservative man, thoroughly well-informed on the topics of the day. He left his childhood's home at about fourteen years of age, and a number of years after his marriage he came to Carlisle and bought the farm where his son Alexander, then eight years old, now lives. It was then known as the Henry Best farm. It contained, originally, a hundred acres, but since it came into possession of its present owner it has been enlarged by the addition of twenty acres. James MacMillen was married three times, and had two children — Alexander and William. The latter enlisted in the northern army when under the age of the draftmark, saw gallant service at Fairfax Courthouse, and subsequently died of typhoid fever. He had previously worked with his father on the farm; and his death, while a severe shock to all his family, was especially affecting to his father.

Alexander MacMillen is the leading Republican in Carlisle, and one of the most prominent in the county. Somewhat singular is the fact that he has attended only two caucuses in his whole life. Three times he has been Supervisor of Carlisle, being the second Republican in this strongly Democratic town to hold that office, the other Republican holding it for only one term. Though a member of the minority party, he met with defeat only once or twice, and then by no larger majority than twenty. He has served for many years on the Republican county committee. Mr. MacMillen is the largest land-owner in town, and the wealthiest citizen of Carlisle. For the last twenty-eight years he has been a successful hop-grower, probably making a greater success of that industry than any other farmer in the locality. About a hundred acres of his farm are cleared land, and in addition to his hop crops he has raised general produce. He formerly owned three other farms, which had come to him through the foreclosures of mortgages, but these he has now disposed of. He is the largest tax-payer in Carlisle. Mr. MacMillen was a stockholder in the old bank at Cobleskill, and is a charter member, stockholder, and director in the new bank. He owns fifty shares, the largest number owned by one man. Mr. MacMillen and his wife are among the strongest supporters of the Methodist church in this place, and both sing in the choir. Mrs. MacMillen is a member of the church, and an active worker in the Sunday-school, in which she has been a teacher for many years. When the Christian Endeavor Society was started here, she became its president.

The maiden name of Mrs. MacMillen, who was married in 1864, was Eveline Bradt, and she is a daughter of William Bradt, deceased, formerly a farmer of Cobleskill. Her paternal grandfather, who came hither from Albany County, cleared the farm and built the house now standing on it. Her grandfather, James Boughton, who lived to the advanced age of ninety years, was the leading man in the Presbyterian church at Carlisle, and in his last years he sat in one of the chairs inside the altar rail. Mrs. MacMillen's father was a member of the Dutch Reformed church. He had a family of four children. Mr. and Mrs. MacMillen have one child, William A., who since attending the Albany Business College has been in business with his father. He married Ada Dockstader, and has one son, Irvin A.

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