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Celestia Ayrault & Emily Ayrault Hobbie

Celestia Ayrault  & Emily Ayrault Hobbie

by Doris Davis-Fritsch

After the Edict of Nantes was repealed in 1685[1] in Catholic France the noble protestant family of Pierre and Francoise de Boylon Ayrault, with their sons, Dr. Nicholas and Dr. Pierre and their families, migrated to New England in 1687 with several other Huguenot relatives. With their wealth and industrial capability, they prospered in their new home.

John Ayrault (1787-1861), the son and the youngest of 5 children of the Revolutionary War hero Nicholas Ayrault, came to Genesee country with a heard of cattle for the Wadsworth family in 1817. He was the grandson of James Ayrault who for years was a member of the Massachusetts State Legislature. He brought up 5 grandchildren, giving them all a good education. They were friends with and former neighbors of the Wadsworth family. John’s older brother Allen migrated with them and remained in Geneseo, NY until his death in 1861. He was a banker and merchant.[2]

Before starting out on his cattle drive, John married Huldah Smith (1792 - 1881), and they made their trip as a wedding trip accompanied by cows. They liked the opportunities that Genesee County offered suchh as the abundant waterpower, and the wonderful rich soil, much better than the soil of New England. So, they did not return to Standisfield, Mass., but bought land, and for 14 years they prospered. Huldah taught school and brought up the family.

In 1831 John purchased 300 acres in Perinton and by all accounts was very successful. They had 10 children, 3 of whom died. Celestia, John, George, Allen, Emily, Warren and Miles accompanied their parents here and were educated at the Macedon Academy.

After John’s death in 1861, Warren and Allen inherited the family farm, buying out the other members. Warren sold out to Allen several years later.[3]

About 20 years later, in 1886[4], Celestia Ayrault and Emily Ayrault Hobbie, both in their 60s, purchased the Conant home at 30 West Street. Emily was married to Captain Isaac Hobbie[5]. Three children of their brother Allen, whose wife Lavilla died in 1885, were brought to live with them, so that they could attend the superior schools in the village[6]. At the time there was the Fairport Union School on West Church Street, the first school in town that had separate grade levels, and a school on East Avenue, the Northside Grammar School. The schools were established in 1872 and 1876 respectively[7]. The children’s names were Allen, Jr., John Winthrop and Edith Celestia.[8]

Celestia Ayrault

Celestia Ayrault (1821-1889) was unmarried and lived with her brother’s family on the farm[9] until buying the house with her sister on West Street. She and Emily were charter members of the Congregational Church choir, which was established about 1833.[10]

Emily Ayrault Hobbie

Emily Ayrault Hobbie (1823-1904) was married in 1848 to Isaac S. Hobbie. Emily’s life with Isaac took her to Rochester, then Elmira and Tonawanda, NY, before returning to Fairport. She and Isaac had 3 children. In Elmira she was a member of Rev. Thomas K. Beecher’s Church. She taught Sunday school, did charitable work, and was a life member of the American Bible Society of New York City[11].

Isaac S. Hobbie

Isaac S. Hobbie was a Captain in the 54th Regiment in the Civil War[12]. He served for a short period of time as Superintendent of the Irondequoit and Rochester schools and taught school for a number of years. He then engaged in the manufacture of water and gas pipe and the construction of water and gas works, having factories at Elmira and Tonawanda, N Y. In 1865, they moved to Elmira. In 1877, the two factories were consolidated, and Mr. Hobbie removed to Tonawanda, NY. After moving to Fairport in 1886, he was active in the community, serving as justice of the peace for four years.[13]

Celestia died in 1889[14], and the home at 30 West Street was left to Emily. The Hobbies stayed here for nine years and then moved in with one of their sons in Tonawanda. Upon Emily’s death in 1904[15] Isaac inherited the house. He owned the home for another 6 years, before selling to Bella and William Boyland in 1910. The Ayraults/Hobbies owned the property for 24 Years.[16]


For more on important historic personages that have lived or contributed to our community visit the People of Perinton page.


[1] History of Huguenots - “on October 18, 1685, Louis XIV revoked the Edict of Nantes. Practice of the "heretical" religion was forbidden. Huguenots were ordered to renounce their faith and join the Catholic Church.”

[2] History of Livingston County, New York, by James H. Smith in 1881 at The Big Tree Inn, Geneseo, NY

[3] Perinton & Penfield Profiles article published date unknown (in in Shoppers Guide?) and Ayrault Family Early Settlers, published 10.5.1977. Both articles written by Town Historian Helen E. Butler

[4] Property Abstract

[5] Monroe County Mail 12.1.1904

[6] Fairport Herald Mail 9.3.1886

[7] Town Historian Article; Schools Overview

[8] Landmarks of Monroe County 1895

[9] Monroe County Mail 8.29.1880

[10] Fairport Herald 10.29.1924

[11] Monroe County Mail 12.1.1904

[12] Civil War Records, Special ScheduleSurviving Soldiers, Sailors and Marines, and Widows 1864

[13] Landmarks of Monroe County 1895

[14] Monroe County Mail 8.29.1889

[15] Monroe County Mail 11.24.1904

[16] Property Abstract


The Conant - Boyland House and Carriage Barn at 30 West Street is a local designated landmark.


Individual stories about the owners of 30 West Street can be found in the People of Perinton section of this webpage or click the name below.

Austin R. & Mary Conant

Isaac S. Hobbie

William & Belle Boyland

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ARCHIVED August 2023. Please visit for current information.