Barney J. McGarry — butcher, cigar maker and rancher who voted for Hughes

Barney J. McGarry, an early 20th century cigar maker from Glens Falls, depended on “a pair of his own horses that are noted for their roading powers,” when traveling the Adirondacks to peddle his wares.

A Feb. 17, 1905 Franklin County snow storm as McGarry was traveling between Onchiota and Rainbow Lake was too daunting even for his sturdy team to make it through.

“After floundering in a drift for nearly an hour, Mr. McGarry was obliged to leave his team and go back to Onchiota for help,” The Morning Star of Glens Falls reported on Feb. 21, 1905. “A force of men succeeded in digging them out and they were taken back to that village for a much needed rest.”

McGarry had his cigar shop at the Peabody Hotel on Glen Street, later the location of the Kresge store.

Around 1910, he moved to Boulder, Colorado to live in a climate better for his health, and he took up ranching.

In 1916, The Glens Falls Times and Messenger, a Republican daily newspaper, checked in with McGarry to inquire about the weather and if he planned to vote for Republican presidential candidate Charles Evans Hughes, a Glens Falls native.

“I intend (on) voting for him, and hope to see him elected, Will do my part,” McGrarry wrote back, adding that Hughes was very popular in the west, according to am Aug. 26, 1916 report in the Times.

“This is certainly gratifying,” the Times commented.

“Mr. McGarry … says the season has been dry in California and crops outside the irrigated section are not good. The supply of water is limited,” the Times report continued. “His health is far better in the West than it was here, notwithstanding that he is working hard.”

McGarry was a butcher before he was a cigar maker.

He and brother, Michael, operated a meat market on Ridge Street in Glens Falls, and Barney lived on the second floor above it.

Barney McGarry was co-organizer of St. Mary’s Band, a community band in Glens Falls in 1887.

McGarry was 77 when he died March 16, 1930 at Snyder, Colo., near Denver.

“Mr. McGarry had returned to Glens Falls the early part of last summer and went back to the West recently to attend to his affairs there,” The Post-Star reported on March 18, 1930.

Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY