The Anti-Rent Fight Turns Violent
by George Holcomb • Transcribed by Betty McClave • Edited by Alex Brooks
Wednesday, July 24, 1844: We worked at haying and hoed potatoes and plowed up saffron beds. Today George Allen from Lansingburgh, the Deputy Sheriff, came to Nassau with a guard of 30 men. They were taken by surprise on the road as they passed a piece of woods by a party of men in disguise of Indians and said Allen gave up his papers that were in favor of Van Rensselaer and then he was tarred and feathered and he and his guard returned home.
Friday: we hayed. On this evening I walked over to Russel Palmers and got some butter that was made there on shares. On the way I called to brother Simeon Wylie’s and left a subpoena for brother Sylvester Holcomb and I left a shilling for him, in case I have with Gillet Goodrich as is before mentioned.
Monday: This morning at two o’clock I walked over to Russel Palmer’s and took a bag and came on to brother Wylie’s shop and put on the two bags of new potatoes and the bushel of rare ripe onions and went on to Pittsfield. I sold the cheese that I carried in the bag before I got to the depot for one dollar 20 pence, that is five cts per and the quarter of the dollar is handed to said Palmer’s wife when I returned home and my potatoes averaged me eighty seven cents per and the onions fetched me one dollar. I delivered the eleven boxes of and cheese to Peck and Dodge and took a receit and they are to market it in Boston. I have not got any returns for the last eleven boxes yet.
for the next two weeks George
spends most of his time haying
Friday, August 9: We hayed on said Rodgers farm and finished haying on said farm. Towards night I rode up to Randal A Brown’s store and paid him 41 cts for one gallon of molasses and I had Charlie the Irishman set a new shoe on my gray colt and I paid him the cash 25 cts. I borrowed R.A. Brown’s umbrella for it rained.
Saturday: This morning I took my one horse wagon and went to Pittsfield to Rufus Kendall’s after brother Sylvester for a witness to my court with Gillett Goodrich, and we came home by the way of Pittsfield Village and I called on Mr. Peck, one of my cheese agents and got the returns of the twelve boxes of cheese that I delivered to said Peck on the 15th July which was five boxes, 110 pounds at 4 cents, which makes ten dol and 93 cents and the deductions as follows, freight bill 70 cts and commission on selling which was 27 cts and the twelve boxes that went with the cheese 1.68 cts which leaves eight dollars 28 cts to be divided with said Russel Palmer and his share is two dol and seven cts. This afternoon at two o’clock I took my brother Sylvester into my single wagon and carried him to Ferdinand C. Brown’s to my court with Simeon G. Goodrich. The court was opened and adjourned to the 25th of September and I had Randal A. Brown to defend my cause and said Goodrich had Judge Davis from Troy to defend his cause.
Sunday: On this day my son John F took the single wagon and carried brother Sylvester Holcomb home to Pittsfield and I paid brother Sylvester one dollar cash for his journey as a witness and today my son Geo P. took the two wheel carriage and carried his sister Sarah and Belinda Pierce to East Nassau to the funeral of one of the Anti-Rent men that belonged to a company of what is called Indians or white men dressed in disguise. The man was flung from his horse and the horse stepped on him.