Niagara County

1897 Biography - Frank Alonzo Dudley

Dudley, Frank Alonzo, is descended from John Dudley (1), who settled in Guilford, Conn., in 1673. The line from John (1) is Ebenezer (2), Nathaniel (3), Phineas (4), a soldier from Connecticut in the Revolution, who was born in Guilford, and married Ruth Dowd, who had two brothers who were killed in the war for Independence; Phineas (5), who was born in Killingworth, Conn., and married Elizabeth Graves, a great-granddaughter of Governor Webster of Connecticut; and John A. (6). A number of Mr. Dudley's ancestors served in the Colonial and Revolutionary wars, and many of them won distinction in civil life. John A. Dudley, father of Frank A., was born in Guilford Conn., May 4, 1829, came to Western New York when a young man, and on December 20, 1854, married Henrietta, daughter of lthureal and Candace (Gaskill) Wright, who was born in Lockport, N. Y., December 20, 1832. He first settled on a farm in Wilson, Niagara county, where Frank A. was born January 30, 1864, being the third of five children. Soon afterward the family moved to Wisconsin and settled at Whitewater, where Mr. Dudley still lives, and where his wife died January 16, 1887. He spent his active life as a farmer and real estate dealer. Frank A. Dudley was educated at the Wisconsin State Normal School in Whitewater, and when eighteen returned East, locating in Lockport, where he read law with Hon. Joshua Gaskill. He was admitted to the bar in 1886, and in 1887 settled permanently in Niagara Falls, where, in 1888, he formed a copartnership with Hon. W. Caryl Ely, under the firm name of Ely & Dudley, which still continues as Ely, Dudley & Cohn. Mr. Dudley rapidly rose to a front rank at the bar, and for several years has enjoyed an extensive law business. He is an able lawyer, a man of great energy and perseverance, and has been eminently successful. He is a stockholder and an officer in a number of important business and commercial enterprises of Niagara Falls, including the Electric City Bank, of which he is vice-president; he was early connected with the power development at Niagara, and was one of the incorporators and organizers of the Buffalo and Niagara Falls Electric Railway. In politics he is an active and prominent Republican, and in 1895 and 1896 was elected to the Assembly, where he introduced and championed several bills which became laws. He introduced and had made the law giving the Niagara Falls Hydraulic Manufacturing Company the permanent right to use from the waters of Niagara River sufficient to develop 100,000 horse power; he also introduced and secured the passage of the graduated inheritance tax bill, designed to equalize the burden of taxation throughout the State. This bill is what is known as the "Dudley tax bill," and was vetoed by Governor Black. He is a Knight Templar Mason, holding membership in Niagara Frontier Lodge, No. 132, F. & A. M., a member of the order of Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, and is also a member of the Sons of the American Revolution. December 17, 1890, he married Etta, daughter of Wesley Payne and Harriet Ann (Sackett) Brown, of Niagara Falls. Mrs. Dudley is a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution through three great-grandfathers, Elijah Gilbert, Stephen Pain, and Rufus Butts.

Contributed 2017 by Lisa Slaski from Landmarks of Niagara County, New York, by William Pool, D. Mason & Co., Syracuse, NY, 1897

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