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William Prentice, Fly Creek, NY

William Prentice of Fly Creek, Otsego, NY
By Linus Joseph Dewald Jr., Editor
Fall 1999 and Revised: 30 Jun 2004

Update of 24 Apr 2001: This article has now been superceded and replaced by the article on Edwin Prentice of NY, NE and NM in our Summer 2001 issue.

We are helping William Michael Prentice, Charles Prentice and Nancy in in their efforts to trace the ancestry of William Prentice, also called William Floyd Prentice.

William Prentice may have been b. 2 Nov 1866 (Charles says 1867, perhaps in Maryland Twp., Otsego County, NY. The 1900 census gives William's birth date as Aug 1869) at Fly Creek, Otsego County, NY. Fly Creek lies quite near Cooperstown.

We do not yet know the name of his father, but Charles Prentice identifies his mother's maiden name as Ellen Hooker based on her photo, on the back of which she is identified as the mother of William Prentice. She is said to be from Otsego County, NY.

According to Nancy Lanni's email of 23 Apr 2001, quoting Charles "Bud" Prentice, William Prentice went "West Texas" in his youth for a time, then had returned to Otsego Co., NY.

William Michael Prentice, a grandson (below) says that in his later years, William lived with the grandson's family during the winter, then return to his own house for the summer. However, in January 1959, he returned to his own house early and perished on 9 Jan 1959 at the age of 92 in a house fire caused by wood from a woodstove at Frankfort, Herkimer, NY where he had lived alone for many years.

Additional information about William and his in-laws can be found at a website by Dan Touse (DTouse@catskill.net) for William Prentice

William married, as her 2nd husband, Eda Mary Bliss (see Fn. 1), b. 6 Dec 1868 in Otego, Otsego, NY and d. 3 Dec 1946 in Ilion, Herkimer, NY. She was the daughter of William D. Bliss and Celestia Ann Chase. Eda appears in the 1920 Herkimer Co., NY census as "Edith." Eda has 3 children by that prior marriage: William Pierce (Nancy Lanni's grandfather), Bessie Pierce and Ben Pierce, Children of William and Eda:

  1. Floyd Prentice b: September 11, 1905. He m. Gladys Ostrander. He has not had contact with his siblings and their descendants since about 1950. Children:
    • Floyd Robert Prentice, b. 20 Mar 1928.
    • Raymond Donald Prentice, b. 14 Jun 1929. According to the death record of his sister, Carol, in 1983 he lived at 1830 2nd St., Bakersfield, CA.
    • William George Prentice, 22 Feb 1932.
    • Carol Mae Prentice, b. 14 April 1940 and d. 18 Feb 1983. She did not marry. Buried Malhalla Memorial Park, 10621 Victory Blvd, North Hollywood, CA.
  2. Glenn Royal "Robert" Prentice b: December 28, 1907 and d. 6 Jul 1984. He m., 1st, Genevieve Marie Schaefer. She was b. 2 Feb 1911 and living in 2000. Children:
    • Glenn William Prentice b: 29 May 1935 and d. 1 Sep 1998. Glen married, first, Joanne Kone. Children
      • Denise Prentice, b: April 4, 1956. She m. Dale Williams. Children:
        • Kim Williams, b. 4 Aug 1975
        • Jason Williams, b. July 16, 1978
        • James Williams, b. July 16, 1978
      • Donna Prentice, b: 5 Sep 1958
      He married, again and second, Joanne Fox (same person as Joanne Kone). He married, third, Katherine "Kitty" (surname unknown). Children:
      • Katie Prentice, b. 28 Mar 1961. She m. Mr. Zanett. Daughter:
        • Tara Lynn Zanett
      • Marci Prentice, b. 27 Jul 1962. She m. Charles Schultz. Daughters:
        • Carly Joy Schultz, b. 13 Feb 1986.
        • Hayley Schultz,b. 9 Apr 1990.
      He married fourth, Dorothy Maine on 14 Nov 1966. Childen:
      • Ann Prentice, b, 6 Jan 1969. She m. Terry Wagner.
      • Glenn William Prentice, b. March 10, 1972. Died 2 Jul 2000 in auto accident. He m. Angela Kobler. Son:
        • Glenn William Prentice III.
        • Ashton Michael Prentice, b. 9 Feb 2001.
    • Patricia Prentice, b: November 22, 1940. She m. Peter Angelo Gentile. Children:
      • Peter Anthony Gentile, b. 5 Aug 1959.
      • Paul Gentile, b. 27 Dec 1960.
      • Patti Ann Gentile, b. 9 Jan 1962.
      • Paulette AngelaGentile, b. 11 Oct 1964.
      • Phillip Gentile, b. 21 Jun 1966.
    • Mary Lou Prentice, b. 31 Jan 1942. She m. Denes Zsedely. Children:
      • Tammy Zsedely. She m. Michael Keys. Childen:
        • Shelby Keys
        • Jeremy Keys
        • Gregory Keys.
      • Robert Zsedely. He m. Laurie Pencola. Children:
        • Austin Zsedely.
        • Nicholas Zsedely.
    • James Robert Prentice, b: July 17, 1945. He m. Hilda Barnaby. Children:
      • Kim Prentice, b: July 21, 1968
      • Tina Prentice, b: March 8, 1971
    • William Michael Prentice, b: 29 May 1953. He m. Margaret Curcio, b. 16 Apr 1953 and d. 19 Apr 1984. Children:
      • Matthew Prentice, b. April 18, 1980.
      William m., 2nd, Pamela Lynne Kirk, b. April 14, 1956. Children:
      • Alison Leyton Prentice, b. April 8, 1988.
  3. Raymond Harold Prentice, b: February 13, 1911. He m. Louise Henderson/Henrikson in Nov 1934. Sons:
    • Raymond Prentice, b: May 1, 1935.
    • Charles Richard Prentice, b: October 9, 1937.

So far we have not identified William Prentice's parents or siblings. However, the 1880 Otsego County census shows the following families which we have not yet traced:

  1. Darwin Prentice, b. c. 1828, and his wife, Emily. Darwin might be his father. He is not listed in the IGI or Ancestral File.
  2. John R. Prentice, b. c. 1851, and his wife, Ellen. John might be a brother.
  3. Charles M. Prentice, b. c. 1851, and his wife, Cora. Charles might be a brother.

Edwin A. Prentice is likely William's father.

Updates of 12 Nov 2000 and 20 Apr 2001: In our Winter 2000 Prentice Newsletter we have an article about Edwin A. Prentice who married Flora Bowe in Milford, Otsego Co., NY on March 29 1876. Edwin had a son, William F. Prentice, who was b. c. 1868 in NY. He was living with Edwin's family in the 1880 NE census, but does not appear with the family in a later census.

Fly Creek lies only about 10 or 11 miles north of Milford.

Because of the name similarity and birth date proximity, it might be that Edwin's son, William F. Prentice, may have returned to Otsego County, NY after 1880 where he later married and died.

If William Floyd Prentice is Edwin A. Prentice's son, then Ellen Hooker being William's mother would be consistent with Flora Bowe being Edwin's second wife.

Another bit of circumstantial evidence, mentioned by Nancy Lanni in her email of 22 Apr 2001, tending to corroborate William as Edwin's son is that one of William's sons was Glenn Royal Prentice while Edwin had a son named Royal A. Prentice "Royal" was an unusual name and would indicate that William may have named one of his sons after an uncle.

In yet another bit of circumstantial evidence showing William to be Edwin's son, the reference to William Prentice going to "West Texas" in his youth for a time, then returning to Otsego Co., NY, is consistent with his being the William F. Prentice, son of Edwin A. Prentice, whose family eventually settled in New Mexico but where William does not appear in the NM census.


Fn. 1. Eda's first marriage was to John William Pierce on 19 Oct 1890 at Burlington, Otsego, NY. He was the son of Alfred Kinne Pierce and Catherine Bianca Herdman. Eda and John's family homestead was on Fitch Hill in Fly Creek. Fly Creek, the village, is essentially at the bottom of Fitch Hill. A few miles from that is Toddsville where Eda's brothers, William and Wilburn lived and where their family may still be living. A few miles from Fly Creek in a different direction is Hartwick, where the Bliss family homestead was located.

William Pierce, Eda's first husband, was working at Remington Arms in Ilion before his death. Eda and William Pierce resided in Ilion at the time. Eda's boarding house was never at Fitch Hill. It is unclearwhether there was a literal boarding house or whether William Prentice was merely boarding with Eda to help support her little family after her husband's death. It is also unclearwhether he was boarding with her in Ilion while she was married or later at East Frankfort.

Correspondence:   If you have any information about the folks mentioned in this article, please send your information to us at the Prentice Newsletter. Be sure to give the full title and date of this article in the Subject line of the email.

Caution: If you don't use the above email link, your email to us may be deleted as spam by our email filter.

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