Town of Fremont

Sullivan County, New York

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I can recall the manner in which the apples in those days were harvested. The owner hand picked the fruit and dumped them on a pile on the ground - a pile for each variety. The crew that packed these apples were in the employ of the buyer. They sorted the apples on the ground, where they found the piles, packed them in the barrels that had been delivered on the ground. When the barrel was full the top was rounded and the head pushed in place with a special tool for that purpose. This crushed - or badly bruised - the apples at the top of the barrel but it was the practice universally followed until the basket came into use. The cull apples were then used for cider or went into making dried apples (apfel-chnitz) produced in the home and an article of barter at the village store. Schmidt at North Branch had a commercial dried apple factory which used as many as 70,000 bushels of apples a season.
The apple barrels made at the cooperage at Mileses were made of local timber, much of it elm.

Red Men Lodge at Mileses

It came to my attention just recently that Mileses, too, had a brewery and that two beer cellars existed just west of the village somewheres near the church. These cellars, too, had stone arched ceilings. I find in the Childs Gazetteer of 1870 that a man named John S. Neikals is listed as the brewer. I am told he has descendants in Fremont today.
Mileses one time had a lodge of Red Men. The hall it built stands today. It was later used for the Grange and again later by Golden Seal.
Mileses in its heyday had a furniture factory, an undertaker, a blacksmith shop, a wagon maker shop, and a carpet weaving plant.
Acidalia, located in the northwest corner of the town, was the last to be settled. Blake Calkins told me when he came there to live the valley down to the Basket was such a dense forest that it was dark even in mid-day. Not a speck of sunlight could penetrate the tree tops. Albert Holcomb, former town of Fremont supervisor, son of one of the firm of King and Holcomb, with whom I spend many a pleasant hour, told me of his family coming to Fremont from Herkimer County. Their trip took them overland by use of oxen. The family had a diary in which an account of the trip had been written describing the different stopping places along the route. The last place at which they camped over night was across the county line in Delaware County not far from Acidalia. Mr. Holcomb gave me a rather vivid description of this particular spot. It must have made a deep impression on him and he must have seen it often since reaching Acidalia. The one thing I remember clearly was the spring of water on the site.

Sliverville (Fernwood) Interesting

The King and Holcomb company built a wood alcohol plant, commonly called an acid factory, and later built a second one about four miles down steam at a place called Fernwood, by some Sliverville, according to the point of view of the individual. When the supply of wood was exhausted, the factories closed down. The land holdings of the King and Holcomb firm extended into