Uncle Frank writes in 1949, "My great grandparents on my father's side were James Persons and Betsey(?) Merwin. They lived and raised a family at or near Grand Gorge (then Moresville), Town of Roxbury, Delaware County, NY. Their children were: George, Albert, James, Rensaler, and a daughter Elizabeth. There may have been other children, but at this time I have no more information concerning them. Albert and George lived in the town of Liberty, Sullivan Co. James lived at East Worcester, Otsego Co. Elizabeth married Baxter Adams; they lived at North Harpersfield, Delaware Co., NY".
NOTE:Frank Persons was grand-uncle to Joyce Persons Boxler Riedinger
My research shows:
James is listed in the 1810 census as living next to Stephen Murrin and Stephen Murrin Jr., his other neighbors being Daniel Lerever, Frederick W. MKeen, Lewis Hardenbergh and Fanny Baker. In the 1850 census, James ane Sarah are living with sons George and Albert with neighbors being a Williams family, and Nathaniel Squires and Emory Robinson, Family Burchhan(sp) and Harrington.
Sarah is listed in the 1855 census as a widow. In the 1855 census Sarah states they had lived in the Town of Roxbury for 55 years.
In the 1860 Census when Sarah is living with son Albert, they are right in the village of Grand Gorge. Neighbors being Sines, Soles, Wood, and Wyckoff.
1850 Town Roxbury census - James said to have been born in Massachusetts
1880 Jewett Census - Stephen's father said to have been born in Vermont
1900 Town of Liberty Census - Albert's father also said born in Vermont
On the 4th day of May 1810, James Persons mortgaged unto Barlow Sturges (formerly of Town of Fairfield, CT) (Barlow Sturges obtained the land from Joseph Nicols of Fairfield) 54 acres of land lying in the town of Roxbury (formerly town of Stamford), adjoining lands of Ruth Botsford (daughter of the late John Nicols of Fairfield) and lies in Lot #37 in common with Ruth Botsford.
On the tenth day of June 1835, James Persons mortgage unto William Brackney, 100 acres of land, part of Lot #9 on the northern division of Great Lot #19 in the great Hardenberg Patent, it being the same piece of land conveyed to Persons by E.R. Satterlee by a lease dated 30 Sept 1829.
15 Aug 1835, James Persons mortgage unto Charles Smedberg - Lot #9 in the northern division of Great Lot #19 of Hardenberg Patent. This property appears to be on or near the Ferris Hill Road.
Notation in Mortgage Index at Delhi that Ruth Botsford was wife of Charles Smedberg"
Research on Stephen VanRensselaer Persons:
Uncle Frank (b. 1872) writes "Rensaler, my grandfather, first married Susan Mackey of Grand Gorge (Moresville). They were married 3 Nov 1831, had two children, Eli C. and Polly Ann. His first wife, Susan Mackey Persons died 13 Aug 1836. She was born 17 Feb 1810. She is buried at Grand Gorge in the Old Cemetery near the church on Main Street. Rensaler Persons, born 30 Aug 1810, died 27 Oct 1896 buried beside his first wife at Grand Gorge. Polly Ann, their first born, is buried with her father and mother by the old church, and Eli is in the New Cemetery, Grand Gorge. His second wife (my grandmother) was born 16 Mar 1816, died 12 Apr 1902, buried in the Rice Cemetery, Jewitt Heights, Greene Co., NY. She was Polly Elsworth. They were married 6 Aug 1837." "Grandfather and Grandmother Persons first lived there at Grand Gorge, then moved to a farm in Johnston Hollow, know as the Dan Leonard Farm. My father was a small boy at that time, and he loved to speak of that place. From Johnston Hollow they moved to Little Westkill, the last farm at the head of the Hollow. This was quite a large farm. They lived there quite some years, for Father enlisted in the Civil War from that place when he was but 17 years old. This must have been around 1860-1861. Then they bought a smaller farm at Jewitt Center, NY. They must have moved there about 1870; they lived there 'til they died, and the old home passed on to Uncle John, who had never married, and stayed with his father & mother as long as they lived, and after because he owned the place (by arrangements with the other children). When he died, he left to Uncle Daniel's son John, his name sake."