AMERICA THE GREAT MELTING POT
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Direct descendant is highlighted in red
Lindley's father, a Quaker, had fled the United States during the Revolution
so Lindley was born in Nova Scotia. Apparently it was a fairly rugged
life. He was named for Lindley Murray, a
celebrated grammarian and wealthy merchant of New York who "befriended Samuel
Moore in the difficulties growing out of the war." (1) The family returned to New Jersey
in 1810. (2) Lindley was already a teacher at Nine Partners when Adam and Anne Mott
moved there in 1811. He and Abigail became engaged when she was 17 and he an
assistant teacher at the school. His letter to Abby in 1812 shows that he
was very much in love and the match was not arranged. (3) The pay was not good so they moved to Rahway, NJ
where they opened a Quaker School. Their son Edward Mott Moore was
born there in 1814. In 1815 they moved to New York City to take charge of the
Monthly Meeting School of Friends on Pearl Street. Lindley and Abigail
made their home with her parents, Adam and Anne Mott, on Lombardy Street.
However in 1817 they rented a house on Chrystie Street. He had been
earning $1,200 a year but in 1820 times were tough and his salary was reduced.
Lindley decided to give up the school and move to Flushing and opened a boarding
school for boys in 1820. "Seven years later he bought five acres of land
in Westchester Village, on the road to New York, about opposite the Friends
Meeting house, and removed his school to this place in the Spring of 1828.
Here also he prospered, and his residence here is several times referred to in
family letters. But he had laid up money and was beginning to think of
retiring from the arduous labors of a school to the tranquility of a farm.
A visit that he and his wife made at Rochester confirmed him in this desire, and
after considerable inquiry and negotiation he purchased, in 1829, the farm of
170 acres then occupied by Erastus Spalding for $5,200. The farm was
beautifully situated, on high ground, on what was alter know as Lake Avenue in
the City of Rochester, being the direct road from the City to lake Ontario, at
the mouth of the Genesee River." (1) In 1831 he built a "two story house in the Greek revival style."
(Later the house became a convent for the Sisters of Nazareth Academy.)
For more information about their early married life and photos of their home,
see page for Abigail Mott Moore
Not a lot is known about his relationship with his parents and siblings but there are definite indications that he cared about them. For starters, Lindley's oldest son Edward, was named after his brother. He also visited Canada to visit his family several times. In 1819 James Mott Sr, Abigail's grandfather, mentions that Lindley is going to Canada and hopes that he will visit him on his way back. (4) Lindley's father Samuel died in September 1822 and left him 200 acres in Norwich, Ontario which shows that the affection went two ways. By 1834 we know that Lindley was a naturalized US citizen. (5) In 1838 he traveled to Canada to intercede with the authorities on behalf of his brothers, Enoch and John, who were being tried for treason. After being held for sometime both were pardoned. Both John and another brother, Samuel, visited Lindley in the United States. Samuel as early as 1812. Later on Samuel moved from Canada to the United States permanently. When John was released from prison in 1838 he spent a couple of months in the United States with his brothers, Lindley in New York, and Joseph in Ohio. John returned to Canada and died there in 1850 (for more information - see pages for John Moore and Samuel Moore, Lindley's brothers.)
There is not much doubt that Lindley was a devout Quaker. In a letter to his son Edward written in June 1834 he wrote, ". But I hope thou wilt not let a few scientific pursuits prevent the acquisition of general information. But there is another reason to rend thy residence at Troy for so long a time, particularly unpleasant; I mean the seclusion from Society of Friends. I hope my dear son, whether thy stay is long or short thou wilt be particular in thy observance of the peculiarities of our Society. A consistent Quaker is always respected. I have no objection to thy going the round of the different meetings at Troy, but as they are all so different in their code of Worship from Friends & generally so outward in their ideas of thought, I should be glad of those converts have the privilege of remaining in they chambers on the 1st day of the week & devote they attention to the readings & study of the bible. An intelligent Quaker stands deservedly high in the estimation of sensible & well bred people, but an ignorant one very low." (6) In another letter to his son Edward after Edward had married in 1847, he says, "I want to hear from my new daughter as well as thyself. As little as I saw of her, I can truly say that I love her as a daughter." (7) This is striking because Lucy Prescott was an Episcopalian and remained so for the rest of her life. Normally marrying outside of their faith was frowned upon by Quakers and called for dismissal from the church. Lindley was also referred to in a history of the University of Rochester as being pretty tolerant of secular education. The Rochester site says, "In much the same vein, the Quaker Lindley M. Moore, apparently an early advocate of the idea of higher education in Rochester, dismissed as groundless the alarm of Church over the sectarian serpent. Besides the collegiate department, the university, he pointed out, would furnish training in medicine, law, and area theology, and only in the last area could sectarianism manifest itself. Even that danger would be nullified, Moore reasoned, if each Protestant denomination endowed a theological professorship to furnish instruction in keeping with its own convictions. 'It is greatly to be desired that no unnecessary fears, or illiberal views frustrate or jeopardize the success of the great and noble enterprise,' he concluded. " (8) Also, most Quakers were strongly against slavery, and Lindley was no exception. In 1838 he helped form the Rochester Anti-Slavery Society and became its first president. (9)
It isn't often that you get an insight into an ancestor's character, but in Lindley's case, we have a few clues. In the following letter he teases his wife Abby who loves to get letters from their son, Edward. Abby was writing to Edward. "Thy father went to Rochester this afternoon, and when he returned, he asked me who I would rather have a letter of all my friends I immediately replied “Edward” and he handed me them." (10) In another letter from Abby to Edward in 1834 she refers to suit brought against Lindley. He was being sued for not paying a tax on a cow that he owned. He refused to pay the tax because it was being levied against the inhabitants of the ward to built a school which originally was not supposed to cost a penny! He was having none of that! In fact he was "willing to take the lead & settle the principle, for there are a number of poor people who are unable to sustain the expense of a suit." (11)
In a history of Haverford College of which he had been principal from 1848-1850, he is remembered as genial and fine old man. There is a humorous account of his disciplinary methods as seen below. (12)
His strong character served him well. He had an eventful but difficult life. Although he was a teacher for most of his life, he seemed to want more. As a young man he devoted all of his time to teaching. First at Nine Partners where he met Abby, then at Rahway, and after that at New York City. He always taught at Quaker schools. In 1830 he became a farmer in Rochester. At first he did well, but by 1836 when President Jackson abolished the Second National Bank and caused the recession, times became difficult. In her letters to Edward, Abby often refers to their financial difficulties. When he really needed money he would teach at a school in Rochester where his children and Lindley also taught but it did not pay very much. (13) He also had the misfortune of cosigning a note for his son, Gilbert, in a business venture, and when that went sour, his financial difficulties only got worse. (See page for Gilbert Moore.)
The years 1844 to 1846 were terrible. Mary, his nineteen year old daughter, died in December, 1844; Abby his wife died in April 1846 and Murray his twenty-five year old son died in December 1846. All died of consumption (tuberculosis). Lindley then became a full time teacher at a Quaker school in Providence Rhode Island and then became the principal of Haverford College from 1848-1850. While at Haverford, Lindley wrote to his son Edward on June 30, 1850, "Do write to Ann. It does her good to have a letter from thee. You two are the only ones of 9 children that are left, on what affection I rely. We must keep up that affectionate intercourse which is the sweetener of human life." (14)
Lindley retired from Haverford in 1850 and then went to live with his son Edward until Lindley died in 1871. Judging from the few letters from that period, Lindley must have led a contented life with his son and his grandchildren. He also must have continued dabbling with his farm at Sandy Creek in Rochester since in his will he leaves an interest in the Sandy Creek farm to his son Edward.
(1) Adam and Anne Mott by Thomas C. Cornell, 1890.
(2) "Loyalist Settlements 1783-1789 - New Evidence of Canadian Loyalist Claims" by W. Bruce Antliff, 1985. Mississauga Library Call #971.042 ANT pg 5-6. Also New Jersey Tax Lists, Aug 1810, Nov 1810, Woodbridge Township, Middlesex County, New Jersey
(3) Letter from Lindley Murray Moore to Abigail Mott, 7th Mo. 31, 1812. Letter on file with Moore-Haines Papers at Swarthmore College
(5) Letter from Abigail Mott Moore to Edward Mott Moore, 5th mo 1st 1834.
Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
(6) Letter from Lindley and Abigail Moore to Edward Mott Moore, 6th mo 22nd, 1834. Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
(7) Letter from Lindley Murray Moore to Edward Mott Moore, 11th mo 21st, 1847. Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
(8) University of Rochester http://www.lib.rochester.edu/index.cfm?PAGE=2307
(9) Notable Men of Rochester and Vicinity, 1902
(10) Letter from Lindley and Abigail Moore to Edward Mott Moore, 5th mo, 5th, 1834. Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
(11) Letter from Abigail and Lindley Moore to Edward Mott Moore, 5th mo 5th, 1834. Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
"Thou probably recollects that it was promised and advertised last fall that the school at the corners should be a free school - thou also remembers Met - the new trustee appointed Dr Hall as collector for the old school - bill, well, they also authorized him to collect the bills for the present winter and made our a bill of 70$ - rather a singular free school. - Dixon’s children went a part of the time - Thomas 8 weeks and Ann 5 weeks and now Dixons bill is $2.75 there are many others quite as much out of the way as that, some and indeed most of them say they will not pay it. (Handwriting changes to Lindley’s) Mother has not told thee how I am circumstanced in this whole business at the Landing. It seems they have made out a tax of eight dollars for wood, which thou mayst recollect was not voted by the district, but 3 dollars for repairs were voted. They added the 3 dolls voted by the district to the 8 dolls laid by themselves contrary to law, making 11 dolls and of this 11 dolls they taxed me $2.40 - this, I suppose, was to revenge me for telling Avery & his crew so many plain & home things on Sabbath schools, etc. Dr Hall called on me to know what I would do as he was under the necessity of making returns within 30 days. I told him I should not submit to injustice & therefore would not pay it until I was obliged to do so. He accordingly levied on a two year old heifer yesterday, and I went to Rochester in the afternoon and got out a summons for Avery, Gidding & Peter. I am to have a hearing before Justice Alexander the 16th inst. I understand the whole district nearly refuse to pay their school bills. I thought I was willing to take the lead & settle the principle, for there are a number of poor people who are unable to sustain the expense of a suit. We will inform thee of the result when it is decided."
Letter from Abigail Mott Moore to Edward Mott Moore, 5th mo , 1st, 1834.
Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
(12) A history of Haverford College for the first sixty years of its existence. Porter & Coates, 1892 pg 187-8
"Those who have known will lovingly remember this genial gentleman. (Lindley M Moore) His scholars will not soon forget his kindly ways, nor his friendship for Horace Greeley and the principles of the Free Soil Party, nor the sonorous tones with which he repeated the verses of Milton and other English poets, although an amused smile may suffuse their faces when they recollect how he discouraged their efforts at smoking tobacco, while hiding his own, or when they revert to some of his eccentric methods, more appropriate to the boarding-school than to the college. He had a way of affixing to each offence a letter which designated it, as " n," for "negligent," etc., and at the morning collection would read out the names of offenders, each with his appropriate letter. One morning he determined to make an impression on a boy notorious for his laziness, and called out "John t," which was an unfamiliar letter in this vocabulary. All eyes were, of course, turned upon John, wondering what heinous crime he had been guilty of, when Friend Moore announced in stentorian tones that " t" stood for " tardy," making it the text for a lecture to the offender which he did not soon forget. The fact that it was the custom of "Super," as the boys irreverently called him, to wander about the corridors of Founders' Hall after bedtime, in slippered feet, did not deter the students from many a roguish escapade, visiting each other's rooms, tying toes to bedposts, and flitting like sheeted ghosts from place to place between his rounds. On one occasion, he had sentenced a boy to incarceration, during study hours, in one of the class-rooms on the first floor, from which there was a descent of, perhaps, ten feet to the area below. During the morning Friend Moore was walking around the house, and caught his prisoner in the act of climbing down and attempting to escape. Confronting the delinquent, he repeated the lines from Virgil—
"Facilis descensus Averno,
(13) Abigail Mott Moore to Edward Mott Moore, Rochester 2 mo 18, 1839. Letter on file with the Edward Mott Moore Papers at the University of Rochester.
"How dost thou feel about father’s engaging another year in the High School, devoting his whole time and talents for a salary of $600 or at most $700 a year, and what is most trying to me is his being prevented from attending meetings of any description except on first days, of course, he of no use in society matters, and where that is the case we soon loose our interest in these things. This view of the subject is a source of no small anxiety to me; I had much rather see him a plain simple farmer than a gentleman teaching under such circumstances. He has two months more to keep before his year is up, and what he is to do for an assistant during that time he knows not." Later in the letter she is writing about the legal battles. " ---- at present it is a heavy draw upon thy father with all this other difficulties and I assume but from that it will prove a heavy loss to us. With regard to ourselves, I think I should prefer going on the little farm to any other movement which we can make at present, but this does not suit thy father "
(14) Letter from Lindley Murray Moore to Edward Mott Moore, June 30, 1850. Letter on file at the University of Rochester with the Edward Mott Moore Papers.
Will of Lindley M Moore
"I Lindley M Moor of the City of Rochester, Do make, publish & declare this, my last will & testament, in manner following, that is to say
First, I give & devise & bequeath to my son Edward M. Moore a note for five hundred dollars given by him to me, being the only note given by him to me.
Second. I give & devise & bequeath to my daughter Ann M Haines a note for sixteen hundred & fifty dollars, being the only note given by Emmor Haines to me.
Third. I give & devise & bequeath to my daughter Ann M. Haines, my library.
Fourth. I give, devise & bequeath to my son Edward M Moor my interest in the Sandy Creek Farm in the town of Hamlin, Monroe Co. State of New York.
Fifth. I give and divisive & bequeath to my grandson Walter C. Moore the sum of one hundred dollars. Also to my grandson Edward D. Moore the like sum of one hundred dollars. Also to my grandson Crowell Murray Moore the sum of one hundred dollars.
Sixth. I give and devise and bequeath the remainder of my personal property to be equally divided between my son Edward M Moore & my daughter Ann M. Haines.
Eight. I hereby nominated and appoint my son Edward m Moore and my son in law Emmor Haines the executor this my last will and testament, hereby revoking all former wills made by me.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand & seal this twelfth day of August one thousand eight hundred and seventy one."
He died five days later.
A History of Haverford College for the First Sixty Years of its Existence, 1892
"The Committee on the Reorganization of the School -- called a special meeting of the board 2nd month 15th, 1848, and recommended Lindley Murray Moore for Principal and Teacher of English Literature. -- He was then at the close of his sixtieth year. He was a portly man of commanding height and mien, of benevolent countenance and expressive features. -- His surviving daughter, Ann M. Haines, says of him: 'He was a Friend by birth and conviction, a great lover of the bible, and very familiar with it. He rarely failed to give chapter and verse to any one who asked where to find Scripture passages; he was nevertheless, untinged by sectarianism, and always took a strong interest in everything that would advance the cause of Christ in every denomination.' He had married Abigail L Mott (the niece of Richard Mott, the well-known Friend and minister), 8th month 19th, 1813, and after a married life of thirty-five years had been parted from her by death about eighteen months before taking charge of Haverford.
Lindley Murray Moore's experience as an educator had been wide and varied. At seventeen an accident confined him for some months to the house. During this enforced quiet he developed a strong love for study, and was sent to school at Sandwich, Mass. By teaching he here helped himself to pay for further study for a few years. He afterward taught at Nine Partners Boarding-School, of New York Yearly Meeting. He next kept his own private school in Rahway, N.J., for three years. From thence he went to New York to take charge of the Friends' Monthly Meeting School, on the grounds of the Meeting House, in Pearl Street below Oak from 1815 to 1821. His salary which at first was $1,200, as time grew harder and harder was made, successively, $1,000 and $800. Induced to quit the city by bad health, and perchance by failing income, he opened, in the spring of 1821, a private boarding-school for boys at Flushing, L. I., which he moved to the village of Westchester, N.Y., in the autumn of 1827, and continued until 1830. This undertaking having been prosperous, he abandoned teaching, and established himself as a farmer in easy circumstances, on a fine farm of 170 acres, now in the city of Rochester. In the flush times of 1836 he was induced to sell his farm, and soon after lost all his property. He then became a teacher in a public school at Rochester. Death and marriage scattered his family, and the death of his wife in 1846 having broken up his home, he went to Providence to teach in Friends' Boarding-School, and then to Haverford, as we have seen. He afterward made his home in Rochester with his son, Dr. E. M. Moore, and died 8th month 14th, 1871.
Those who have known will lovingly remember this genial gentleman. His scholars will not soon forget his kindly ways, nor his friendship for Horace Greeley and the principles of the Free Soil Party, nor the sonorous tones with which he repeated the verses of Milton and other English poets, although an amused smile may suffuse their faces when they recollect how he discouraged their efforts at smoking tobacco, while hiding his own, or when they revert to some of his eccentric methods, more appropriate to the boarding-school than to the college. He had a way of affixing to each offence a letter which designated it as 'n,' for 'negligent,' etc. and at the morning collection would read out the names of offenders, each with the appropriate letter. One morning he determined to make an impression on a boy notorious for his laziness, and called out 'John --- t.,' which was an unfamiliar letter in this vocabulary. All eyes were, of course, turned upon John, wondering what heinous crime he had been guilty of, when Friend Moore announced in stentorian tones that 't' stood for 'tardy,' making it the text for a lecture to the offender which he did not soon forget. The fact that it was the custom of 'Super,' as the boys irreverently called him, to wander about the corridors of Founders' Hall after bedtime, in slippered feet, did not deter the students from many a roguish escapade, visiting each other's rooms, tying toes to bedposts, and flitting like sheeted ghosts from place to place between his rounds. On one occasion, he had sentenced a boy to incarceration, during study hours, in one of the class-rooms on the first floor, from which there was a descent of, perhaps, ten feet to the area below. During the morning Friend Moore was walking around the house, and caught his prisoner in the act of climbing down and attempting to escape. Confronting the delinquent, he repeated the lines from Virgil--
and required him to perform the more difficult feat of climbing back into the window. But those incidents only gave spice to Haverford life. And it perhaps was well that Haverford reopened under the attractive influence of this fine old man."