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Russell Prentice of Johnstown, NY

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Russell Prentice of Johnstown, NY
By Linus Joseph Dewald Jr., Editor
Summer 1997 and Revised 14 Jun 2009

Update of 14 Jun 2009: This article has now been replaced by our Fall 2009 article of the same name.

1. Russell Prentice was probably b. c. 1790-1800 in an unknown location. An IGI entry says he was b. c. 1783 and is "of Johnstown, Fulton Co., NY. He is one of the rootless Prentices identified in Binney's 1883 Edition. We do not know much about Russell' activities. From "Spicers Autobiography" we learn that as early as 1814, Johnstown belonged to a regular Circuit of the New York Conference and was composed of territory lying between the Mohawk and Sacandaga rivers, embracing some fourteen towns.

The newspaper, "Montgomery Monitor" was established by Roberts and Andrews in 1808 but soon passed into the hands of Russell Prentice who owned it until 1824 when he sold it to Duncan and Daniel McDonald.

In 1827, Johnstown formed a part of "Montgomery Circuit" which had for its preachers, John D. Moriarty, J. W. Denison, and John Alley. In 1828 Bro. Mariarty was stationed at Johnstown and the following year, with Merritt Bates, Junior Preacher, was appointed to the "Johnstown Circuit." On the 31st day of August of this year (1829), the present organization of the Methodist Episcopal Church of Johnstown was effected. A meeting was held in the Court House for the election of Trustees, and Nicholas Garlock, and Russell Prentice were chosen to preside, and Rev. Merritt Bates as Secretary. On July 13th of that same year, Russell Prentice became a member of the Sunday School Society.

Russell Prentice m. Sarah Pratt on 19 Dec 1819 and Russell was called "of Johnstown, NY. Sarah was the daughter of Seth and Margaret Pratt and was born 23 Feb 1786; she died 20 Apr 1849. They had two known children:

  1. William Russell Prentice, b. 7 Dec 1820, perhaps Johnstown, Fulton Co., NY. He m. Mary Campbell on 5 Mar 1845 They might be the Russell and Mary Prentice shown in the 1880 census in the 17th Ward, Albany, Albany Co., NY.Children (per IGI):
    1. Harriet M. Prentice, b. 28 Nov 1844, perhaps Johnstown.
    2. Mary Campbell Prentice, b. 10 Mar 1848, perhaps Johnstown.
    3. Isabelle Eliza Prentice, b. 7 Dec 1850, perhaps Johnstown.
  2. Harriet N. Prentice, b. 14 Aug 1822, Johnstown, Fulton, NY (per IGI).

Who are Russell Prentice's Parents?

We know who this Russel Prentice is not:

  1. He is not the Russell Stanley Prentice in Binney96, pg. 44, #46iii; both Russells appear in separate entries in the 1830 Johnstown, Montgomery Co., census. In addition, Russell is still in Johnstown in the 1840 census, but Russell Stanley Prentice appears in the Salisbury, Herkimer Co., census.
  2. We also know he is not the Russell Prentis who appears in Binney96, pg. 378, #24vii; that Russell would have been only 12 in 1819 and too young to have married in 1819.

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