This is the obituary of my GGGrandfathers youngest son.

Wesley Richard Bowen Harden

Submitted by Wesley Harden -


A distinguished citizen of the county was active in numerous civic affairs and a leader in the town of Pike.

Howard M. Bowen was born December 29, 1867, the youngest of the seven children of Alfred and Phebe Ann Bowen. His birthplace was the family farm about four miles from Aurora on Lake Cayuga, town of Ledyard, Cayuga County. On the paternal side, he was of Quaker background, since his father was a birthright Quaker. He was married at Scipioville, NY, January 30, 1889, to Nellie E. Baker and daughter of James Hyatt Baker and Susan Aikin Baker. They lived for several years on the farm which was his birthplace, and here two of their children were born.

Mr.. Bowen received his education in the common schools of the state, in the summer schools of Chautauqua Institution and Cornell University, and by diligent private study. Throughout his life he was an eager and independent student of books and public affairs.

For nineteen years, he was a teacher in the public schools of New York State, being a school principal most of this time. Having a background of practical farm experience throughout his boyhood and early married life, he returned to the agricultural field as a teacher of agriculture in the Sinclairville Agricultural High School, Chautauqua Co., of which school he was principal. In 1914, he resigned this position to become Farm Bureau Agent for Wyoming County. He was later employed in State Extension Work and in agricultural work for the Federal Government, connected with the fight against the corn borer. He was also employed by the New York State Farm Bureau Federation and the American Farm Bureau Federation. This work took him to many states, including Arizona, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and Maryland.

In the summer of 1915, Mr.. & Mrs.. Bowen established their home in Pike. Mr.. Bowen served as Justice of the Peace from January 1, 1926 to December 31, 1941, or a total of sixteen years. He was Town and Village Historian in Pike, and editor of the Wyoming County Gazette at the time of his death. He was trustee of Pike Library and had been a member of the Gramge for thirty-five years.

In 1922, Mr.. & Mrs.. Bowen brought their letters to the church of Pike from Cooperstown, NY. Mr.. Bowen became a member of the Presbyterian Church of Scipioville (south of Auburn, NY) over sixty years ago, and was elected and ordained an elder in that church he was a trustee and treasurer of the church for many years and a faithful attendant at the services of the church. He died at his home on North Water Street, Pike, NY, on Friday, October 29, 1954. A prayer service at the home at 11:30 AM Monday, November 1, was followed by the funeral service at 2:00 PM in the Presbyterian Church of Pike. Burial was in Elmwood Cemetery in Pike. The Rev. Lawrence P. Van Slyke, Pastor of the Presbyterian Church officiated. The bearers were Howard Smith, Sr.., Lewis Cook, John F. Morgan, and three grandsons: the Rev. Alfred B. Bauer of Weedsport, NY, Howard Bauer of West Perry, and Cpl. Charles D. Bauer now of Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.

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