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History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
Fred Blue King

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 402-405 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 Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

Contents | Portraits | Illustrations | Maps

Portrait of Fred Blue King

Portrait: Fred Blue King

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Fred Blue King, who has been the postmaster at Gloversville since the first of the year 1922, is one of New York state's native sons, his birth having occurred in Earlville, September 30, 1871. His father, George King, was born in Russia, Herkimer county, of French-American stock, while his mother, who bore the maiden name of Caroline Matilda Haggart, claimed northern Oneida county as her birthplace. The Haggarts were Scotch and passed down to their descendants those staid, dependable traits of character that have distinguished the Scot wherever he has gone. As a boy Mr. King attended the Clinton grammar school in Clinton, New York, where Grover Cleveland lived and went to school. Later Mr. King moved to Utica, where he began a long newspaper experience as a member of the staff of the Utica Morning Herald. During his journalistic career he was editor of the North Star at Marinette, Wisconsin, and occupied a similar position on the Johnstown Republican of Johnstown, New York, and on the Fulton County Republican. For years he has been connected with The Morning Herald of Johnstown and Gloversville, of which he is still part owner. This sheet, the only morning daily published between Utica and Schenectady, occupies a unique place in the life of the large territory it serves. In recent years it has enjoyed a notable growth in influence and circulation, no small share of which is due to its editorial policy under Mr. King's able direction. On January 30, 1922, Mr. King was appointed postmaster at Gloversville and since taking up his new duties at the federal building has been more or less actively associated with the publication of the Herald, although he was, of course, obliged to give up his work as editor.

Always deeply interested in politics, Mr. King has long taken an active part in the canvasses of his party. Born into a republican family, he was naturally influenced in his early views by the opinions of his elders, which, however, he afterward adopted from conviction. That he did not accept his political faith without due consideration of the issues involved is shown by the fact that in 1912, together with many other lifelong adherents of the "Grand Old Party", he swerved away from the "old guard" toward the progressive wing of the party, under the brilliant leadership of the late Theodore Roosevelt. In 1915 he rejoined the regular organization of the party and has since been one of its prominent leaders in Fulton county, especially before he accepted his appointment to the postmastership in Gloversville. Mr. King's active connection with New York republicanism dates back, however, to the "Sound Money" campaign of 1896, memorable for the vigor with which it was waged by both of the great parties. During that campaign he was engaged by State Chairman Charles W. Hackett, who in 1896 was the owner and publisher of the Utica Daily Herald. He has been a leader in Fulton county politics since 1897, when he came to Johnstown as editor of the Johnstown Republican.

In 1918 Mr. King was named a member of the New York State Overseas Commission by Secretary of State Francis M. Hugo. He was disappointed, however, in not being able to go abroad, for by the order of the war department the passports of the commission were cancelled by the United States government on the very eve of their sailing, not long before the close of the war. Mr. King had some military training as a youth in the Clinton grammar school and was accepted for service in France by the military authorities; but here, too, he was thwarted in his efforts to enter the foreign service, for he was not called to the colors until a short period before the armistice was signed. Meanwhile, he was busy doing all that he could it home to maintain the home line of defense and proved himself a very able worker in the various war activities of Fulton county. The local Kiwanis Club owes much to Mr. King, for he was instrumental in securing its organization and helped establish it on a firm basis during his term of office as first president. He is now a member of the board of directors. Another organization of a civic nature to which he has given freely of his support is the Gloversville Chamber of Commerce, in which he is also one of the directors. For ten or a dozen years he was prominent in the work of the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks. While living in Marinette, Wisconsin, in 1891, he identified himself with the First Presbyterian church of that city and has since maintained his connections with that denomination, his actual membership now being in the Presbyterian church of Clinton, New York.

On Christmas Day of 1897, Mr. King and Miss Katherine Alberta Lingenfelter were united in marriage, the ceremony taking place at Johnstown. The daughter of Captain Sidney J. and Elizabeth (Warren) Lingenfelter of Johnstown, Mrs. King was born there December 5, 1876, and made that city her home until after her marriage. Her death occurred in New York city, on October 22, 1922. Captain Lingenfelter, Mrs. King's father, held a captaincy in the Union army during the Civil war and was an officer in the One Hundred and Fifth Regiment, which was raised and equipped in Fulton and Montgomery counties. He died not many years after leaving the service.

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