Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Nicholas I. Quackenbos

During the early days of the settlement of America, when large numbers of sturdy Dutch pioneers crossed the Atlantic and founded New Amsterdam, two brother named Quack Boss came to this country, one of who, settled in Albany, took the name of Quackenbush, while the other, remaining in New York City, adopted the name of Quackenbos. From the latter of the two brothers, the subject of this notice is descended. For generations the family has been one of wealth, prominence, and influence, and it has given to New York many of its leading merchants, attorneys, and physicians. One of the most prominent members was George P. Quackenbos, the noted school-book author, who was a cousin of our subject.
The family are heirs to a large estate at The Hague, Holland, which was left by a Mrs. Weber, an eccentric old lady, who bequeathed it to her descendants in the fifth generation. In the eighteenth century an effort was made to secure a division of the property and Aaron Burr was sent to Holland for that purpose, but he was unsuccessful, as indeed have been all those who have endeavored to get action on the fund. The father of our subject, Mangle Minthorn Quackenbos, was a descendant, through his mother, of the Tompkins family, one of the old established families of Staten Island. He was born in New York City December 2, 1792, and spent his life there principally, though for a short time he sojourned in Canada. Being a man of keen insight into intricate commercial affairs, he was prospered in his undertakings, and became the owner of a large amount of valuable real estate, in addition to the property which was bequeathed to him. The old homestead was situated on Third Street and the Bowery, the property extended across the island and comprising about two hundred acres. For some years after 1813 he kept a large military guard on his place.

Identified with the early history of New York City, M.M. Quackenbos served for a number of years as one of its Aldermen, and was in other ways prominent in public affairs. He was secutiry on the bond for a Government Custom Collector, and, difficulty arising, he was for a long time in litigation with the Government, and after his death the estate paid $100,000 to the Government in order to adjust the claim. He passed away July 17, 1864, when less than seventy-two years of age. His wife, Juliana M. Clark, was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., October 20, 1795, and died in New York, March 20, 1889, aged ninety-three years. She was a member of one of the old and influential families of New York, and was a lady of most estimable character, a worthy descendant of her honored ancestors.

The family of M.M. Quackenbos consisted of thirteen children, five of whom attained years of maturity. An elder brother of our subject, John M., who was born July 10, 1817, is still living, and makes his home in New York City. A sister, Louisa C., became the wife of C.W, Wadsworth, the late Minister to Mexico, and since his death she has continued to live in Mexico. Nicholas I. was born at No. 25 Riverton Street, New York City, April 14, 1838, and is the seventh generation in desent from the original representative of the family in America. The rudiments of his education were gained in public schools, and afterwards he attended the Poughkeepsie Collegiate School.

At the age of twenty-one years, Mr. Quackenbos came to Montgomery, Orange County, N.Y. , where he purchased a tract of land and has since engaged in farming. He is the owner of one hundred acres lying in the city, and this is well improved, being one of the most beautiful suburban homes in the county. The residence, built according to a modern style of architecture, is commodious and elegantly appointed, and the surrounding farm buildings are first-class. In many respects it is an ideal home, comfortable, attractive and inviting, the abode of a refined and cultured family.

The first marriage of Mr. Quackenbos occurred November 2, 1859, when he was united with Miss Mary, daughter of John Carvey, of Montgomery. This lady, was born August 9, 1841, and died February 12, 1875. They were the parents of three sons and two daughters, namely: John C., Edward M., and Robert, all of whom are connected with the Home Building and Loan Association at Reading, PA; Jennie S., an accomplished and popular young lady; and Susan C., Mrs. E.G. Swezey, of Goshen, N.Y. Mr. Quackenos was again married, September 1, 1875, his wife being Miss Catherine Rowena Moulf, who was born February 24, 1850, and is the daughter of John and Emily (Douglas) Mould, of Orange County. Four children bless their union, named as follows: Julia Minthorn (known as Minna), Harrison M., Frederic A. and George N.

While Mr. Quackenbos has never been prevailed upon to accept public office, he is interested in municipal matters and politically gives his vote to the candidates and principles of the Republican Party. He is a frequent attendant at the meetings of the Republicans of the county, and in conventions his voice may often be heard in explanation or defense of some progressive measure. He was reared in the Episcopalian faith, but is now identified with the Dutch Reformed Church in Montgomery.

Source: Portrait And Biographical Record of Orange County, New York. Containing Portraits and Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens of the county, 1895.


  1. My Grandparents brought his house. The new owner is looking to restore it to its original state. He’s looking for the original colors of the house. Would you have that information? I have a picture of the house but can’t add it here.

  2. Kim Baty KosteczkoAugust 3, 2023 at 3:57 AM

    I also have his picture if you need it for your post.