Obadiah Bush

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Obadiah Newcomb Bush
Born (1797-01-28)January 28, 1797
Penfield, New York
Died February 9, 1851(1851-02-09) (aged 54)
at sea/in transit from California
Resting place
at sea
Religion Episcopal
Spouse(s) Harriet Smith
Children 7

Obadiah Newcomb Bush (January 28, 1797 – February 9, 1851) was an American prospector and businessman. He is an ancestor and founder of the Bush political family.



Born in Penfield, New York, Obadiah was the

  • son of blacksmith Timothy Bush the Younger (1761–1850)[citation needed],
  • grandson of Timothy Bush Sr (1735–1815). who is more notable as an American Revolution militia captain [1] and thus usually given the name "Timothy Bush",[2] and Lydia Newcomb
  • great-grandson of Richard Bush and Mary Fairbanks[citation needed]
  • great-great-grandson of Samuel Bush (1647–1733)[citation needed]
  • great-great-great grandson of John Bush (1593–1670), his last Old World ancestor.[citation needed]

Early life[edit]

Timothy left home during the War of 1812. On November 8, 1821, he married Harriet Smith (1800–1867) in Rochester, New York. They had seven children, among them James Smith Bush.


In Rochester, New York, he became a schoolmaster and was on a committee that nominated candidates for justice of the peace. He and his brother Henry, a manufacturer of stoves, were known abolitionists. He served as vice president of the American Anti-Slavery Society and supported the Underground Railroad. He petitioned the New York State Legislature to secede from the Union in a protest against slavery, after which The Rochester Daily Advertiser accused him of encouraging anarchy.

In 1849, he travelled to California due to the gold rush, leaving wife and children behind. After two years, he was on his way home to reclaim his family and take them west, when he died aboard the ship and was given a sea burial.


  • Mansfield, Stephen (2004). The Faith of George W. Bush. Tarcher. ISBN 1-58542-378-5.