History Wall Info #2

Who were the Scrantons?

The death of Erastus C. Scranton in 1866 at the age of 59 was remarkable in its horror. Scranton was president of the New York & New Haven Railroad and traveled after Christmas to New York with his daughter, Mary Eliza, who was 29 at the time. After exiting the train in Norwalk for an errand, he ran to catch the train as it was moving, slipped, and fell on the snowy surface between the platform and the train cars. He was struck by the train and died almost instantly. He was buried in Madison in West Cemetery.

Erastus and Lydia’s first child, Ezra Erastus Scranton (1831-1855), married Sarah Fowler Todd (1835-1855) in 1854. She died in childbirth in February 1955 and Ezra died a few months later.

The first Mary Eliza Scranton (1837-1839) died as a child in Augusta, Georgia and a gravestone exists in the Summerville Cemetery in Augusta. She is also recognized in the family plot in West Cemetery, Madison.

Photo of cemetery stone in Augusta, Georgia, courtesy of Laura Downes.

A daughter was born later in 1839 and she was again named Mary Eliza. She went on to build the library and name it for her father, E C Scranton Memorial Library.

Francis Rathbone (1851-1853) is another child who died young.

During the 2020 Renovation and Expansion, the Scranton family paintings were restored by Joe Matteis, an Art Conservator in Clinton, Connecticut, and the frames were restored by Holbrook & Hawes, Art Conservators, of Bethany, Connecticut.