Biography of Edward Newton Frary

EDWARD NEWTON FRARY – One of the pioneers of New England, John Frary came from England and settled in Dedham, Massachusetts, and was one of the founders of the church there. He subsequently moved to Medford and died at an advanced age on June 14, 1685. His wife’s name was Prudence. Their children: Theophilus, Samson, Mary, John, Eleazer, of whom further; Isaac, and Samuel.

(II) Eleazer Frary, son of John and Prudence Frary, was born in 1640, settled in Hatfield, Massachusetts, died December 19, 1709. He married, on January 25, 1666, Mary Graves, daughter. of Isaac Graves. They had seven children.

(III) Isaac Frary, son of Eleazer and Mary (Graves) Frary, was born March 2, 1686, married on December 8, 1715, Lydia Parsons, daughter of Jonathan Parsons.

(IV) Lieutenant Elisha Frary, son of Isaac and Lydia (Parsons) Frary, was born August 18, 1729, died July 8, 1801. He removed to Sharon, New York, in 1798. He married Miriam Warner, and they had eleven children.

(V) Isaac Frary, son of Lieutenant Elisha and Miriam (Warner) Frary, was born August 22, 1763, died February 4, 1850. He bought the Belding Mills and lived on the Frary place, formerly owned by Eleazer Frary. He married Sarah Munson, daughter of Solomon Munson, born 1760, died 1845. They had eight children.

(VI) Isaac Frary Jr., son of Isaac and Sarah (Munson) Frary, was born March 30, 1797, died March 7, 1866, was a farmer. September 14, 1825, he married Mary Knowles, and they had children: Solomon Munson, of whom further; Clarissa, Marietta, who married J. T. Bannister; and Charles.

(VII) Solomon Munson Frary, son of Isaac Jr. and Mary (Knowles) Frary, was born in Whately, Massachusetts, July 18, 1826, died in 1876 in Whately. He was a farmer and tobacco grower and lived in New York State for a few years and raised tobacco. His life was spent largely in Whately. He married, August 25, 1853, Martha Achilles, born in Oak Orchard, New York, November 7, 1828, died in Bernardston, Massachusetts, in 1915 daughter of Albert and Nancy Achilles. Their children: Eugene M., a clergyman; born April 26, 1854, died in 1924; Charles A., born 1856, died 1862; Etta C., born May 28, 1859, married Allen Wells, deceased; Ernest A., born January 15, 1862; Edward Newton.

(VIII) Edward Newton Frary, son of Solomon and Martha (Achilles) Frary, was born in Oak Orchard, New York, July 29, 1865. He came to Whately, Massachusetts, with his parents when a year and a half old. He was educated in the schools of Whately. Up to eighteen years of age he worked as a farmer and then he learned the tinning and plumbing trade. He entered the plumbing business with his brother in South Deerfield, Massachusetts, when nineteen years of age, under the firm name of Frary Brothers, and thus continued for ten years. He then went into the acetylene gas business, establishing plants for the product in public buildings and private residences throughout New England. He put in town plants in Georgetown, Massachusetts; Essex, Deep River, and Chester, Connecticut, with more than ten miles of pipe. He later brought out a patent lighting system for use on automobiles, known as the Frary Lighting System, which was used from Maine to California. The Springfield and Holyoke Fire Departments used it on all their apparatus as standard equipment, as did the Stanley Steamer Automobile and the Knox Automobile Company. It was an acetylene light that was later displaced by electricity. Mr. Frary later went into the tobacco business, manufacturing cigars in Northampton. Eventually he began the growing of tobacco, and was the founder of the Northampton Tobacco Company in 1918, of which he is president. Mr. Frary had thirteen acres in tobacco in Hadley. The corporation now occupies twenty-five acres of land for tobacco growing in Northampton that formerly was the Fair Grounds, and on which is located their warehouse. They have a large area of land in West Farms upon which they raise tobacco. They own and operate about one hundred acres of land, growing and packing their own tobacco, and they are large employers of labor, keeping many employed the year round. Mr. Frary has been a resident of Northampton for about fifteen years. He is a member of the First Church.

On October 10, 1888, Mr. Frary married Elsie Estella Elder, born in Sherbrook, Canada, daughter of John Elder, born in 1825, died in 1896, of Granby Massachusetts and Emily (Washburne) Elder born in 1833, died in 1920, born in Belchertown, Massachusetts, and granddaughter of William Elder, born in 1781, who married Anna Chamberlain. Mr. and Mrs.. Frary are the parents of two children:

  1. Marjorie Eugenia, born March 9, 1896, married March 28, 1918, Raymond Crittenden, of Woodbridge, New Jersey, and they have children:
    1. Kenneth Raymond, born November 1, 1920, and
    2. Donald Edward, born March 7, 1924.
  2. Edward N. Jr., born September 6, 1903, died in infancy.


Lockwood, John H. (John Hoyt); Bagg, Ernest Newton; Carson, Walter S. (Walter Scott); Riley, Herbert E. (Herbert Elihu); Boltwood, Edward; Clark, Will L. (Will Leach); Western Massachusetts A History 1636-1925; New York and Chicago: Lewis historical publishing company, inc., 1926

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