The Vosburgh Family: An Introduction

Much of what is known about the family founded by Robert Vosburgh comes from Erie newspapers and local histories. I am going to use the known work on this family and add to it more recent research by Guy Washington (California) and myself. In the next few months I plan to travel to Cleveland to gather move information on George Vosburgh and his family. All sources will be published including contact information related to the Archives where information has been found.

Nelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania (1896)

The Vosburgh Family.(741)
In 1818, Robert and Abigail (Tisdale) Vosburgh, the former from Kinderhook, N. Y., and the latter from Taunton, Mass., after a brief stay in Ohio, came to Erie and made their home for life. They had nine children, and bec ame identified with Erie. Of their children, Robert filled a position, for about forty years, in the New York Custom House, and died in Brooklyn, in December, 1889; George W. has been about forty-two years engaged in the Cleveland depot of the L. S. & M. S. R. R. Company; Richard was drowned; Henry and Israel perished in the destruction of the steamer " Erie," August 9, 1841; Charles died in Erie in 1880, and Fitz James at Oakland, California; their daughter, Susan, wife of W. H. Dickson, died in Erie in 1892, leaving Albert sole survivor of the original family in Erie. He has continued his father's business in Erie, much of the time on the same spot. Of this large and well-known family, Robert resided about fifty years in New York city, and was engaged for a long time on the Hudson river and Long Island sound steamers. He was for a while on the " Great Western " steamship which, with the "British Queen," formed the first regular steam line after the practicability of ocean steam navigation hadbeen demonstrated by the " Great Western " and "Sirius." His duties for so many years in the New York Custom House were so acceptably discharged under successive administrations as to cause his long retention in office. Mrs. Dickson closed her long life in 1892, with the respect of a wide circle of friends.Albert Vosburgh is among the active, zealous Republicans of Erie. For many years he co-operated with William D. Fortin,of Philadelphia; William Nesbitt, of Altoona; Robert Stewart, of New Castle, and others in securing to all equality before the law. No one regarded with more intense satisfaction the great changes in the fabric of society. He has traveled extensively. Few are better posted in current and local history. He resides in the family mansion, so long associated with the name. The residence of the Vosburghs, in Erie, is exceeded in time by but few residents.
Erie newspapers
Wednesday, January 10, 1877

Mrs. ABIGAIL VOSBURGH, wife of the late ROBERT VOSBURG (father), deceased, died at the residence of her son, ALBERT,on French Street, in this city, yesterday morning, aged eighty years.

Mrs. Vosburgh was a native of Massachusetts and with her husband "went west" in 1813, first landing at at Kinsman, Trumball County, Ohio going thither by the southern tier of counties as they struck Pennsylvania, to avoid the hostile British that weree then supposed to infest the whole Lake Region. After a residence of five years in the then wilds of Ohio, the young couple with a family of three children "pulled up stakes" and passing into Crawford County, Pennsylvania and tarrying for a brief period, resolved to make erie their home and arrived here in the fall of 1818, where the ceceased has lived since that time, burying her husband in the year 1846 and with him raising a family of eight sons and one daughter.

All but three, we believe are still living, as follows: Albert, Charles and Susan (Mrs. William H. Dickson), Erie; Robert, New York City; Fitz James, California and George, Cleveland. Henry and Israel being lost on the ill fated steamboat Erie and the ninth, the reporter did not learn the name of. (Richard)

Mrs. Vosburgh spent an active life and was widely known by the earlier residents of the town and was respected and esteemed by all.