Franklinville's First Nurse, Rachel Rider

Rachel Rider was born on April 19th, 1761 in Stafford, Connecticut to Daniel Rider and Jerusha Dike.  On May 2nd, 1782 she married Moses Warner and in the summer of 1806 the family moved to Franklinville.  They settled on lot 5 township 4 range 5.  Moses worked at his trade as a cooper.  They raised a family of 11 children.  Their son John married Naomi Hollister in 1811 and their marriage was the first one recorded in the town.

Rachel left a legacy of good deeds behind her.  She was an excellent nurse who also possessed considerable skill in combating diseases with roots and herbs.  She was often called on to perform the more delicate jobs usually assigned to the medical profession, including midwife duties.

When such calls were made there was no night too dark or rough, no path too lonesome or obscure, no day too cold or stormy for Mother Warner, as she was called, to hasten to the bedside where her services were needed. She possessed good health and a light wiry frame, and never troubled herself or those around her for horse or carriage to take her to the sufferer’s couch.  Many a patient had reason to say “God Bless you Mother Warner.”

She had a strong well-balanced intellect and in short might be termed a walking volcano of wit, sarcasm and good humor.  The boys inherited their mother’s constitution and many of her characteristics.  They were noted for courage, powers of endurance, and love of fun.

Rachel and her husband Moses eventually moved to Venango in Erie Pennsylvania.  After the death of her husband in 1840, she applied for a widow’s pension since Moses had served in the American Revolution.  She passed away on August 2, 1850 at the home of her son.  She was 89 years old.

Her dedication to helping others was remembered and noted in the HISTORY OF CATTARAUGUS COUNTY NEW YORK, 1893 by William Adams.

From information in the files of the Ischua Valley Historical Society.  Submitted by Maggie Fredrickson, Village of Franklinville Historian.


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