A newspaper publisher and state senator from New Hampshire, the plentifully named Orsino Augustine Jabez Vaughan was born on March 11, 1819, in Hanover, New Hampshire, one of fourteen children born to Silas and Polly Ingalls Vaughan. Little information could be found on Orsino's early life and schooling, excepting notice of his working in a wool mill where he learned the trade of dyer. Vaughan was admitted to the Connecticut state bar in 1846 and first entered into public office in 1851 when he was named as register of probate for Gilmanton County, serving until 1857.
Vaughan married in 1849 to Julia Cogswell of Gilmanton, who died three years following their marriage. In 1855 he remarried to Laconia resident Mary Elizabeth Parker, with whom he had six children, who are listed as follows: Grace Anna (birth date unknown), Walter P. (born 1856), William A. (1859-1866), Charles Woodward (born 1862), Mary Alice (born 1869), and Edward (1872-1879).
In 1857 O.A.J. Vaughan relocated to Laconia, New Hampshire and eight years later was elected to the New Hampshire State Senate from Laconia, defeating Charles Hackett by a vote of 3,933 to 3, 593. Vaughan served one term (1866-68) and during his term took the reins as publisher and editor of the Laconia Democrat continuing in this position until his death. This term also saw Vaughan have an honorary degree conferred upon him from Dartmouth University.
A member of the New Hampshire State Democratic Committee during the 1860s and 70s, Vaughan was named as clerk of courts for Belknap County in 1874, and later took on an additional post as police justice for Laconia. He died in Laconia on April 30, 1876, aged 57, and was subsequently memorialized by the Bradford, Vermont Opinion as a "genial and social man in everyday life". Vaughan was survived by four children and his wife Mary and was interred at the Union Cemetery in Laconia.
Vaughan's obituary from the Bradford Vermont Opinion, May 6, 1876.
Portrait from Hatch's Illustrated History of Jamestown, Chautauqua County, New York, 1900.
Another "Orsino" that made his name known in public life is Orsino Ellick Jones, who, as luck would have it, was a lifelong resident of my home county of Chautauqua, New York. A distinguished local figure who gained notoriety through business, civic affairs and philanthropy, Jones's political claim-to-fame rest on his service as a Republican Presidential Elector for New York in 1880.
The son of Chautauqua County pioneer Capt. Ellick Jones (1800-1866) and Louisa Walkup Jones, Orsino Ellick "Sine" Jones was born on November 8, 1829, in the town of Ellicott and married in the mid-1850s to Louise A. Howard (1832-1887). The couple would later have one son, Charles Howard Jones (1857-1905).
As a young man in Jamestown Orsino Jones became active in the village's volunteer fire department, eventually serving as its chief. By the 1870s he had established his name in Jamestown's business community, serving as President of the Jamestown Cane Seat Chair Company in 1872, being a founder of the Chautauqua Lake Railway, and was the director of the Jamestown Street Railway Company. Long active in Republican Party circles in Western New York, Jones was an alternate delegate to the 2nd Republican National Convention, which nominated Abraham Lincoln for the Presidency in 1860. A member of the Republican State Committee for four years, in 1880 Jones served as a Presidential Elector for New York. Described as being of the "Stalwart faction" of the Republican Party, Jones is mentioned in Volume 13 of the 1891 Chautauquan as being:
"Prominent in party politics. His hand was in every public movement of the city of Jamestown and the county of Chautauqua. He was a hail-fellow-well-met-among men on 'Change, in social life and political movements. He was a Stalwart of the Stalwarts. He was General Grant's friend, whether he was coming to a Sunday school Assembly or camp meeting or to preside over the nation."
Following his service as an elector Jones continued his interests in the growth of Jamestown, serving as a Civil Service Commissioner for the city, and in May of 1886 was selected as one of ten committee members who drew up the charter for the city of Jamestown. As a well-known man of means, Orsino Jones' name was connected to a number of charitable and philanthropic endeavors in Chautauqua County, including donating 67 acres of land on the border of Chautauqua Lake to be used as a park. Jones would later bequeath further property to the city of Jamestown in 1906 that would eventually become the home to the O.E. Jones Memorial Hospital (pictured below.) Erected at the cost of $100,000, the hospital's cornerstone was laid in 1909 (two years following Jones' death) and it still stands today, although it is now known as an extension of Jamestown's WCA Hospital.
O.E. Jones General Hospital, a postcard circa 1915.
After many years of being prominent in Jamestown public life, Orsino E. Jones died at age 77 on January 25, 1907. He had been predeceased by his wife Louisa in 1887 and son Charles in 1905, and all three are interred at the Lakeview Cemetery in Jamestown under an impressive grave marker (photographs below.) Jones was memorialized in Down's History of Chautauqua County as having been:
" A native son of Jamestown, and no man in the city had a wider experience or more varied life. He was a man of strong physique, regular, temperate habits and a tireless worker........He did much for the material advancement of Jamestown and gave liberally towards the public institutions and charities."
From the Westfield Republican, January 30, 1907.
Buried in the Jones plot are Orsino, his wife Louisa and their son Charles Howard.
Orsino Ellick Jones, 1829-1907.