Dr. George C. Prichard, son of Benjamin and Jane Ann (Stoughtenburg) Prichard, was born February 1. 1839, at Phelps, New York. He acquired his education at Phelps Union Classical School and Genesee Wesleyan Seminary, and later matriculated at Hahnemann Homoeopathic Medical College at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. graduating from that institution in 1869, and since then has been engaged continuously in the practice of his profession at Phelps, gaining for himself an enviable reputation among his professional brethren, and the esteem and regard of his numerous patrons. In the year 1883 he promoted the organization of the Crown Manufacturing Company of Phelps, New York, incorporated under the laws of the state of New York, capitalized at $100,000. They are manufacturers of the Crown Grain and Fertilizer Drill and the Crown Wheelbarrow Grass-Seeder, and other implements. Each machine is warranted to be well made, of good material, and capable of doing as good work and as much, as any machine in the market, under like circumstances. For two years Dr. Prichard served as president, and for twenty-four years as vice-president and treasurer. The plant flourished for twenty-eight years and was destroyed by fire in June, 1909. It was then purchased by E. F. Needham, who is now (1910) (1811) serving as president.
In 1862, during the progress of the civil war, Dr. Prichard displayed his love of country by enlisting in the One Hundred and Fortyeighth New York Regiment. He was promoted to the rank of captain and assistant quartermaster, serving three and a half years, being on the staffs of Brigadier-General A. D. Draper. Major-General Giles A. Smith. and of Major-General Godfrey Weitzel, until mustered out of service. Brigadier-General A. D. Draper with his staff, on the day of General Lee’s surrender, rode into Richmond, participating in the release of our imprisoned boys from famous old Libby prison. Abraham Lincoln, at his visit to the Confederate Capitol at that period, allowed an impromptu reception while he for the hour occupied the Jefferson Davis White House. He sat in the vacated chair of the collapsed Confederacy. The privilege of a life time was the hand-grasp of the Greatest Man Living, who four days later was assassinated.
Dr. Prichard is a member of the First Presbyterian Church, in which he has served for thirty-five years as elder, as clerk of the session, and for forty-five years as superintendent of the Sunday school. At the twenty-fifth silver anniversary of service in the year 1891, July, Rev. J. J. Porter, D. D., pastor, in behalf of the Sunday school, presented the doctor with a beautiful steel engraving of the rich young man mentioned in the Gospel, which was resting upon a large nickel plated easel. This was a complete surprise. At the second anniversary of twentyeight years, July, 1894, a second surprise-flowers beautifully arranged to represent the date were displayed as decorations of the day, had been properly placed in the Sunday school room. An original poem by Mrs. Carrie Starr Prichard, a sister-in-law, was read :
Eight and twenty years of service, Loving, willing service too, Calls for glad recognition From thy fellow workers true. So today we bring the lilies, Fragrant, spotless, pure and fair, God’s sweet messengers of love, His own smile on labors rare.
Dr. Prichard was very pleasantly surprised on July 2, 1911. The patriotic program arranged for the first half-hour of the Sunday school took a turn which he did not anticipate. After the singing of a national song and a recitation by Miss Hazel Mott, Mrs. W. D. Norton, who was to have given a patriotic address, gave instead a reminiscent talk. She told of the circumstances under which Dr. Prichard, a young man of exceptional ability, became superintendent of the Sunday school forty-five years ago, which position he has occupied ever since in a most loyal and acceptable manner. When Mrs. Norton finished her talk, which was beautiful and impressive, Rev. C. C. MacLean, pastor, in behalf of the Sunday school, presented Dr. Prichard with a handsome electric table lamp. In his presentation remarks he said that it was merely a simple expression of the Sunday school’s appreciation of the loyal, faithful and efficient service rendered by Dr. Prichard as superintendent for the long period of nearly half a hundred years. Dr. Prichard responded briefly, but with very appropriate words. The church was very beautifully decorated with flags and flowers, and the attendance was large. The service will long be remembered by the Sunday school. This brief resume of Dr. Prichard’s many spheres of activity proves the broadness of his mental vision, and whether considered as a professional man, business man, soldier or churchman, he has been found to be a man true to himself and true to his fellows.
Dr. Prichard married (first) January 25, 1865, Imogene, born at Phelps, New York, July 25, 1839, daughter of Colonel William and Polly (Sutherland) Post, of Phelps. She died March 29, 1893. Children: Linda Sutherland, born May 28, 1870; Stewart D. C., born April 2, 1873. He married (second) April 10, 1900, Harriet Amelia, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac L. Huff, of Waterloo, New York.
An original poem at the sixtieth birthday, 1899, by Mrs. Carrie Starr Prichard :
Three score years have passed away,
Time’s hand has sprinkled threads of gray, And traced fine lines of care:
There’s been time to work, and time to weep, Of sorrow’s cup I’ve drank, full deep,
In the loss of a jewel rare.
The promised span of life is past,
On the down hill side I’m walking fast: Of years that none can recall,
There are clouds that float in clearest sky, But the blue is there when they’ve pass’d by,
And the sun shines over all.
So let me take in coming years
More of life’s courage and less of fears, As I journey down the slope.
The crumbs that on life’s waters I’ve cast Be freighted, if returned to me at last,
With love and immortal hope.
Still I must up and labor on,
The night’s not yet, the work’s not doneBut the twilight comes apace
What so bright as the sunset hour,
It’s gold and crimson, like the cardinal flower
‘Tis then we shall see His face.
At the present age of seventy-two, February i, 1911, Dr. Prichard retains full mental and bodily vigor, and conducts a large medical practice.