While Saugatuck boasts of the longevity of its people, there being many in the eighties but only one nonagenarian, Jacob S. Aliber, who first saw the light of day in May of 1829 in a little settlement on the border between New York and Pennsylvania, which the natives called in those days, “Johny-cake Hollow.” His father named him Jacob Smith for a neighbor who promised to give the boy two sheep on his sixth birthday, but alas! he is still waiting for those sheep!
The father was a blacksmith and from a little boy Jacob had a passion for fine horses, which has lived with him all the years. He recalls when at the age of twelve he became the proud possessor of a horse by swapping for it a yoke of steers, which he had raised from calves, and says that was his launching into business.
When a young man he came to Saugatuck seeing it pass through the lumbering days-also has seen the sailing vessels replaced by steamboats; the interurban line built and abandoned, and now the bus lines and airplanes.
He was ambitious and always active until the last four years, when his years bid for a more quiet life in the comfort of his home.
Mr. Aliber has twice married, a daughter of the first marriage living in Illinois. The second wife, Louise Goodrich Aliber, sharing his declining years.