Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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BATES, David Stanhope, engineer, born near Morristown, New Jersey, 10 June 1777; died in Rochester, New York, 28 November 1839. He was the son of a revolutionary officer, and was trained under the tuition of Dr. Witherspoon, being intended for the ministry. He preferred a business career, became a clerk, then agent for the Scotchman George Scriba, proprietor of the settlement at Rotterdam, in Oneida County, New York, afterward superintendent of the iron-mills established there by eastern capitalists, judge of common pleas of Oneida County, and in 1818-'24 was assistant engineer on the middle division of the Erie canal. The first aqueduct at Rochester, New York, was designed and superintended by him, though the red sandstone of which it was built was adopted contrary to the advice of all the engineers, who recommended limestone, the material of the present structure, which was erected after the first aqueduct had been carried away. He was afterward employed by the state of Ohio to survey a route for a canal from Lake Erie to the Ohio river, and was made principal engineer of the canal system of Ohio, holding that office from 1825 till 1829. At the same time he served as chief engineer of the Louisville and Portland canal. In 1829 he was appointed chief engineer of the surveys and location of the Chenango canal from Utica to Binghamton, and in 1830 was commissioned to survey the route of the Genesee Valley canal. The line of the Auburn and Rochester railroad, afterward a part of the New York Central, was surveyed by him in 1830. For the next four years he was engaged in surveys with reference to utilizing the water-power of Niagara river, and in 1834 was engaged to make surveys for the Erie and Kalamazoo railroad in Michigan, but in 1835 returned to his home in Rochester with broken health.
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