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History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
William B. Jones

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 205-206 of History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925, edited by Nelson Greene (Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 974.7 G81h. This online edition includes lists of portraits, maps and illustrations. As noted by Paul Keesler in his article, "The Much Maligned Mr. Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

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William B. Jones, head of the granite company which bears his name, was born in Carnarvonshire, Wales, on February 5, 1877, the son of John B. and Elizabeth (Jones) Jones, both natives of Wales, who came to America in 1877 and first settled in North Litchfield, New York, and later at New York Mills. John B. Jones, a stone mason by trade, was the father of eight children: John B. Jones of Helva, California; Eliza, now Mrs. Owen Williams of Utica, New York; Ann, now Mrs. William Parry of Utica; William B., the subject of this review; Margaret, who is Mrs. Samuel Ellis of Utica; Jane Ann, now Mrs. Hugh Humphrey, near New Hartford, New York; Ellen, now Mrs. Hugh S. Jones of Whitesboro; and George B. Jones of Utica. The father was an appraiser of lands at the time of the building of the barge canal. He was a deacon in the Welsh church for many years, his death occurring in 1916. The mother now resides in Utica with her son, George B. Jones. The maternal grandfather, Robert Jones, settled in North Litchfield, New York, in 1882, where he was engaged in blacksmithing.

William B. Jones received his early education in the North Litchfield public school and later the family moved to New York Mills. He then started to learn the monument business with Hughes & Evans, in Utica, and remained in their employ for five years. In 1899 he went to Vermont, where he worked at the trade and attended Montpelier Seminary, from which he was graduated. He was then employed for five years as foreman for Grearson & Beckett, and subsequently was for sixteen years in business for himself in the manufacturer's end, as W. B. Jones Granite Company. In 1922 he sold out and came to New Hartford and established his present monument business.

On September 25, 1907, at Montpelier, Vermont, Mr. Jones was united in marriage to Miss Pansy Maud Severance, daughter of Henry E. and Clara Morse, of Montpelier, their family dating back prior to Revolutionary times. Mrs. Jones takes an active interest in church work. She is a graduate of Montpelier Seminary, both academic and music, instrumental and vocal. Mr. and Mrs. Jones became the parents of the following children: William B., deceased, and John Max, Elizabeth, Llewellyn, Clara and Judith Jones.

For eight years Mr. Jones was town auditor of Williamston, Vermont, and during the World war was active in both Liberty Loan and Red Cross work. He is a Mason and a member of Amicable Lodge of New Hartford and of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and has held many offices. He is a member of the Granite Manufacturing Association of Barre, Vermont. His church associations are in the Methodist Episcopal church of New Hartford, where he is a trustee, member of the board of stewards and a teacher in the Sunday school. In politics Mr. Jones is a republican and he enjoys fishing and sports as a means of diversion. He resides at No. 7 Genesee street, New Hartford, and his home before being remodeled was one of the oldest in the city.

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