Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Little Taste Of History (34)

Topic: Important Businessmen From Queens Borough #2

DAVID L. VAN NOSTRAND, one of Queens County's most eminent citizens, the son of Albert and Harriet Williams Van Nostrand, was born at Little Neck, Queens County, August 3o, 1851, and was educated at the public school of Little Neck. His father's family consisted of seven children, the former also a native of Little Neck, who at his maturity became a farmer. Completing his education at the age of seventeen, David L. began his business career as a grocer's clerk at Mineola, L.I., and for three years devoted himself to learning the rudiments of mercantile life, when he returned to Little Neck, and continued in the same capacity for one year, then opened his own grocery store, and for a number of years was the leading and most popular grocery merchant of the latter place. His keen business intellect determined him to enter a broader and more extensive field, so he finally disposed of his grocer's affairs and opened a coal and feed business at Little Neck, which he conducted so successfully that he opened a branch establishment, and by his square dealing to all of his host of patrons, he finally became one of the most successful and wealthiest residents of the place of his nativity. As a Democrat in political faith, his unswerving integrity and his methodical and prudent business methods were so highly appreciated by his fellow townspeople, that the Democratic party nominated him for justice of the peace in 1880. He was triumphantly elected to the honorable position, and retained the office for nine years, when the party nominated and elected him supervisor in 1889, in which office he served faithfully and with distinction for six consecutive terms ; on his second term he was unanimously elected as president of the board. During this long period of public service Mr. Van Nostrand won the plaudits of his fellow citizens and had, by his accurate knowledge of square business dealing with his neighbors and patrons and his active interest in public affairs, attracted the attention of the citizens of the entire county of Queens, who pointed to him as one of its most loyal and faithful public servants. His name and his administrations became so popular throughout the county that the Democratic County Convention of 1903 unanimously nominated him county clerk and the people and party of the county elected him by a rousing majority. In this responsible and most important office in the Borough of Queens, Mr. Van Nostrand conducted it with that same practical business methods that had heretofore characterized all of his important public duties. In entering upon his term as county clerk he introduced a thorough and systematic method in every department of his office, that was not only beneficial to the public, the lawyers, and searchers, but invaluable to the county and
state. On January 1, 1907, when his term expired, he turned over to his successor one of the best conducted departments of the borough, that was brought up to a higher state of perfection than ever before, under Mr. Van Nostrand's management and three years' administration. On November 9, 1883, Mr. Van Nostrand married Miss Mary E. Fleet. The result of this happy union was one daughter, Viola, now a young lady of brilliant attainments and of social distinction among Queens County's leading families. Mr. Van Nostrand and his family are leading members of the Reformed Church ; he is president of the First National Bank of Jamaica, L.I.;a member of the Niantic Club, Oakland Golf Club, Knickerbocker Yacht Club, and also one of the leading members of Cornucopia Lodge, F. & A.M. In his domestic affairs, he is devoted to his interesting family, who occupy the beautiful and stately homestead on the corner of Broadway and Parsons Avenue, Flushing, and are held in the highest esteem by the leading families of Queens County. In 1877 Mr. Van Nostrand was elected to the Board of Common Council, and served as long as that body was in existence.

DANIEL S. JONES, a merchant and an old and honored citizen of Flushing for the past twenty years, was born at Stony Brook, Suffolk County, N.Y., in 1841. He received a careful education at St. James Academy in Smithtown, L.I. Mr. Jones is vice-president of the Long Island City Savings Bank: a member of the Advisory Board of the Flushing Branch Corn Exchange Bank; he was formerly a vestryman of St. George's Church of Flushing; is a vestryman of St. Caroline's Church at Setauket, L.I., and a member of F. & A.M. In politics Mr. Jones is a Democrat but has never cared to hold public office. In 1874 he married Anna C, daughter of James S. Evans, D.D. Two children were born to the union, Lillian E. (deceased), and Johanna L., wife of Harvey K. Lines of No. 28 Sanford Avenue, Flushing.

RUPERT BARNES THOMAS, president and treasurer of the Lay & Way Company, New York, was born in Brooklyn, May n, 1866. He was educated in the public schools of Brooklyn and High School of New York City. Politically, he stands on the platform of the Democratic party. He is commissioner of the Board of Education of New York and a member of the Committees on finance, sites and athletics. He attends the Congregational Church. On October 13, 1887, he married Miss Mary Titus Broas. Four children are living, viz. : Rupert Broas, Gerald Provost. Katharine Ridgely and Ina Mary. (19)

Sources Utilized to Document A Little Taste of History

Contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net or miriam@thehistorybox.com

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