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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Review Volume of Biographical Sketches of The Leading Citizens of Hampshire County, Massachusetts published by Biographical Review Publishing Company in 1896.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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E. PAYSON LYMAN, a prominent citizen of Westhampton, Mass., where he is engaged in general farming, was born in the house he now occupies. May 27, 1834, son of Sereno and Deborah (James) Lyman, Sereno Lyman was born in the same house, February 2, 1788, and his wife was born in Chesterfield, Mass., December 6, 1789. His father, Rufus Lyman, was engaged in farming and stock-raising on this estate and there he died June 6, 1807; and his mother, whose maiden name was Martha Burt, passed away August 1, 1827. They reared eleven children; namely, Jerusha, Asahel, Rufus, Martha, Enoch, Tryphena, Nancy, Sereno, James Harvey, John Burt, and Liberty.

Sereno Lyman, father of E. Payson Lyman, spent his entire life, with the exception of a few months, on the farm now owned by his son. In 1814 he was drafted for military service at Boston, and having received the rank of Sergeant returned to Westhampton at the end of two months. He was one of the most prominent farmers in the district. His death occurred December 26, 1877. Sereno Lyman was twice married. His first wife, to whom he was united September 16, 1813, was Mary Clark, of Southampton. She died January 13, 1818. She was the mother of two children: Asahel, who, born July 22, 1815, died September 11, 1856; and the other child died in infancy. His second wife, Deborah James, was the daughter of Thomas James, a native of Cohasset, born July 11, 1758. He was a sea captain, and spent part of his life in Chesterfield, Mass., and in Westhampton, dying in the latter place March 1, 1834. Mrs. Lyman passed away September 6, 1868, in her seventy-ninth year. She was the mother of five children, namely: Sereno Dwight, born September 10, 1822, who was married September 5, 1849, to Lucy B. Williams, and died April 7, 1850; Mary C., born May 22, 1825, who died November 11, 1856; William James, born June 28, 1827, who lives near his brother, the subject of this sketch, and married Arethusa Parsons, who died December 29, 1886; Francis Oscar, born July 7, 1830, who was killed in a wind storm in Wisconsin, July 24, 1851; and E. Payson, the youngest of the family.

E. Payson Lyman was reared on the farm, and, as his father was lame, many of the duties requiring an active worker devolved upon him. His father bequeathed the homestead to him, and he has since been sole proprietor. One of many improvements made by him was the clearing of several acres of timber. It is now one of the best farms in the county, and comprises about three hundred and fifty acres, forty of which are under cultivation.

In politics Mr. Lyman is a stanch Republican. He has served as Selectman and filled other offices, but has refused several positions offered to him, not caring to act further in a public capacity. In religious belief he is a Congregationalist, and takes an active interest in church work. Westhampton boasts many old families, and Mr. Lyman’s is one of the oldest among them, while he is personally a worthy representative of a sturdy race.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the Biographical Review Volume of Biographical Sketches of The Leading Citizens of Hampshire County, Massachusetts published in 1896. 

View additional Hampshire County, Massachusetts family biographies here: Hampshire County, Massachusetts Biographies

View a map of 1901 Hampshire County, Massachusetts here: Hampshire County Massachusetts Map

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