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"A Pedigree Partly Indian, Partly Batavian"


    Van Tassel Biographical Sketches


Ambrose Van Tassel

The well known and popular superintendent of the New York waterworks, dam, reservoir and lake at Kensico, Westchester county, was appointed to that position in the spring of 1896, and has proved a most capable official. Faithfulness to duty is one of his chief characteristics, and he is today one of the most trusted employees of the company.

A native of this county, Mr. Van Tassel was born in Mount Pleasant township, June 27, 1848, and is a worthy representative of one of its old and honored families of Holland extraction. His great-grandfather aided the colonies in their successful struggle for independence, as a soldier of the Revolutionary war. John Van Tassel, our subject's father was likewise a native Mount Pleasant township, where he grew to manhood and received his education. He married Miss Harriet Vincent, who was of French descent, and also belonged to a prominent old family of this county. Here both parents died, the father at the age of seventy-four years, the mother at the age of eighty-four. In their family were nine children, but Ambrose is the only one now living. His sister, Angeline Brown, died in 1898. The father was a farmer by occupation, and was a most honorable and just man.

Ambrose Van Tassel was reared on the home farm, where he was early taught to be honest and industrious, and the education he acquired in the public schools of the neighborhood has been greatly supplemented by observation and by experience in business. For several years he was engage in market gardening and farming in Mount Pleasant township, and from 1889 until 1893 held a good position in New York city. Since his appointment to his present position, in the spring of 1896, he has rendered the company valuable service on lake and dam. He has erected seventeen hundred locust posts, capped by yellow pine, four by six inches, the joints being covered and painted with white lead. These posts are quite thick and show off to a good advantage on a dark night along the road. He has cleared much of the land adjoining the lake, removing many large trees and stumps, and his work has all been done in a careful and systematic manner.

Mr. Van Tassel married Miss Margaret Breen, of East View, Westchester county, who was reared and educated at Tarrytown and belongs to an old and well known family of this section. To them have been born four children, namely: John, Harriet, Mary and Tillie. Mr. Van Tassel is broad-minded and progressive in his ideas, and has ever taken an active and prominent part in local politics, attending most of the conventions, but he is not bound by party ties always supporting the man whom he believes best qualified to fill the office. His genial, pleasant manner gains for him many friends, and he is both widely and favorably known.

Biographical history of Westchester County, New York
Chicago: Lewis Pub. Co., 1899, 1163 pgs. 263-264



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