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Nelson S. Fairbush

Born on 10-25-1866. He was born in Buffalo, NY. He was accomplished in the area of Community. He later died on 5-29-1911.
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Nelson S. Fairbush was born in Buffalo, New York circa 1866. In the 1880 census Nelson was listed as a 14 year old. His parents were John and Emanda Fairbush, who were born in Maryland and Pennsylvania respectively. Nelson was the brother of Ida Fairbush, who became the first Black teacher in the Buffalo School System. His other sibling, Olive worked as a domestic. Olive died on September 1, 1934 as the result of being struck by a car.

Nelson's educational background is not known at this time, but he held a position that few African Americans obtained at that time. He was appointed to a clerical position in the United States Post Office at an annual compensation of $800.00. In 1905, his salary was $1,000 a year.

Nelson was married to Josephine and according to the 1910 census the couple had been married 12 years. Mrs. Fairbush, nee Henderson was a native of Cleveland, Ohio.

Nelson was noted as having an excellent tenor voice and was featured at numerous church and community concerts. An article in the January 1902 edition of the Buffalo Express described the rehearsals for a historical pageant to be staged at the Teck Theater in Buffalo. The production was planned for January 30th and was to benefit the Methodist Church even though the participants were members of other denominations. Nelson Fairbush was identified as playing the role of the Marquis De Lafayette in the play. In the vocabulary of the time, the paper complemented the young people in the play by stating that "the pickannines are clever performers."

Nelson was an active member of St. Philip's Episcopal Church serving on the Vestry and as the choir director, at one time. He also was active in journalism acting as an agent for the Cleveland Gazette.

Nelson died on May 29, 1911 of kidney disease. He was a member of the Buffalo Colored Republican League which adopted a memorial resolution in recognition of his passing. Nelson Fairbush was 44 years 7 months and 4 days old according to the burial notice, putting his birth-date at November 25, 1866.