Saturday, March 13, 2010

CENTRAL / WESTERN NEW YORK timeline / 1794


Governor George Clinton addresses the state legislature, urges strengthening defenses against the British. They vote £30,000 for fortifying New York City and £12,000 for the frontiers to the west and north.

Jan 27

Quaker mill owner Daniel Anthony (father of Susan B, Anthony) is born in East Hoosac (later Adams), Massachusetts.


Indian agent General Israel Chapin, noticing desertions from local reservations and fearing trouble from his charges, meets with them at Buffalo Creek and stays close to them on through this year and into the next.


William Berczy, Samuel Street, and Timothy Green, backed by Aaron Burr, Melancthon Smith and Elisha Boudinot, petition Canadian lieutenant governor John Graves Simcoe for 1,000,000 acres along the shore of Lake Ontario.

Mar 5

Onondaga County is carved out of Herkimer County. The town of Manlius is formed, with Comfort Tyler as Justice of the Peace. ** The Seneca County town of Ovid is formed.

Mar 22

The state legislature votes to extend the Mohawk Valley Road west from Fort Schuyler (Utica) to the Genesee River. The extension will be named the Main Genesee River Road.

Mar 26

William Berczy leaves New York City, heads upstate.

Apr 7

Berczy reaches Williamsburg.

Apr 15

Berczy leaves Williamsburg on a visit to Simcoe, accompanied by John Henry Sommerfeldt, Joachim Lunau and Francis Schmidt.

Apr 21

Chapin tries to get Mohawk chief Joseph Brant to agree to meet with George Washington at Pennsylvania's Fort Venango. Brant refuses. ** Onondaga sachem Clear Sky tells Chapin that the Iroquois nation is as free as any nation, including the

U. S.


The first church services in Ovid are held at the home of Abraham Covert.


A grand jury in Canandaigua fails to indict the German settlers who went on a rampage at Williamsburg last year. ** Chapin meets with O'Bale, son of Cornplanter, at Buffalo Creek. The chief insists Chapin accompany him to Presque Isle, Pennsylvania, to survey military conditions. Chapin agrees. ** Berczy and his German immigrants, having fled the law in the Genesee region, arrive at Queenston and Chippewa, Canada, on the Niagara River.

Jun 11

Carleton instructs Simcoe to prohibit the Americans from founding any settlement on the south shore of Lake Ontario.


Chapin manages to keep O'Bale and other chiefs from joining the British and other tribes in northwestern Ohio. ** The Iroquois meet at Canandaigua for internal discussions on a treaty with the U. S.

Jul 18

Simcoe protests to British minister to the U. S. George Hammond, in Philadelphia, that Charles Williamson’s settlement at Sodus is a threat to Canada.

Jul 25

The U. S. press publishes Simcoe's protest, and explains the threat it poses.


The wife of land agent Israel Chapin dies in Canandaigua. She's given the largest funeral the community's seen to date.

Aug 9

Christopher Dugan writes to Charles Williamson from the Falls of the Genesee, the first business letter written in (the future) Rochester. He informs the agent that the mill is badly in need of repairs, and that he would like some recompense for acting as caretaker for the property. ** New York State settler David Piffard is born in London’s Pentonville neighborhood, to a stockbroker and his wife.

Aug 10

A British party lead by Major Roger Hale Sheaffe crosses Lake Ontario, delivers a formal protest against Williamson's settlement at Sodus Bay and requests an audience with the land agent in a week's time.

Aug 19

Williamson drafts a letter to family friend Henry Dundas, secretary in the English Home Office, strenuously protesting Simcoe's threats

Sep 20

Colonel Timothy Pickering arrives at Canandaigua.

Sep 25

Williamson pays H. MacKenzie $41.20 to cover ‘his Expenses to Genesee Mills to get them repaired.’

Sep 26

The Oneida arrive at Canandaigua for the treaty talks. Canadian government representatives have been barred from the negotiations.


Cornplanter meets with Simcoe, who promises the Seneca chief Canadian land at Lake Ontario's Long Point if an agreement with the Americans is not reached. ** Farmer's Brother and Little Billy and their Senecas arrive at Canandaigua, joining the Cayugas, Oneidas, and Onondagas. Cornplanter arrives the following day.


Charles Williamson and his wife Ann have a son, Alexander.

Nov 4

Pickering feels he has soothed Indian feelings over the issues of Presque Isle and land along the Niagara River.

Nov 7

Some of the Indians drink too much and no negotiations take place.

Nov 9

Pickering presents the treaty to the assembled chiefs, but Cornplanter objects on the grounds of previous bad faith.

Nov 11

The Pickering Treaty is signed at Canandaigua, limiting the Seneca to western New York lands.The Six Nations receive $10,000 in goods as payment for their land at disputed points, notably Presque Isle, Ohio. The U. S. agrees to add $3000 to the $1500 annual payment promised to the tribes forever.


Charles Williamson's Geneva Hotel, built at a cost of $15,000, is completed. He hires former English hotelier Thomas Powell as manager and an English chef; celebrates the opening with a grand ball.


County boundaries are surveyed in the Military Tract. ** Connewango pioneer Sarah Ash (Metcalf) is born in Rensselaer County. ** A “Block-house” or public storehouse is erected at the salt springs at Onondaga Lake. ** The legislature authorizes the surveying of a road between Utica and the Genesee River. ** Onondaga County is carved out of part of Herkimer County. ** Jediah Stephens, having been recently elected supervisor of the new Canisteo district (parts of Steuben, Allegany and Livingston counties), meets Painted Post supervisor Eli Mead at Cohocton Village. They ride to Canandaigua together. ** The approximate date Elder Daniel Irish conducts the first church services (Baptist) in the Cayuga County town of Fleming. ** Augustus Porter prepares a map of the Phelps and Gorham Purchase from his own survey. ** East Bloomfield pioneer Markham family buys another farm in the area. The resulting settlement is named Markham's. ** Potential Indian and British problems slow settlement in the Genesee region. ** Philadelphian Thomas Cooper visits the Genesee Country. ** The town of Northfield, in what will become Monroe County, is created, containing the future towns of Brighton, Henrietta, Irondequoit, Penfield, Perinton, Pittsford, and Webster. ** The population of Herkimer County is 1500; Otsego County 12000, Tioga County 7000. ** Judge Augustus Porter leads a team to re-run the 1788 Pre-Emption Line, to correct errors. ** Abraham Cuddeback becomes the first settler in Skaneateles, starting a homestead in the military tract. ** Jemima Wilkinson arrives in the Town of Jerusalem with her followers. ** The Fabius area is settled. ** A bridge across the Genesee River is built at Avon. ** John Danforth arrives in the future Liverpool. ** The Candor village area of Tioga County is first settled. ** The Town of Virgil, part of the Town of Homer in Herkimer County, becomes part of Onondaga County.


Strict Baptist Minister Thomas Streeter settles near here. ** The governor and the council of appointment make Charles Williamson an Ontario county judge.


Pulteney land agent Charles Williamson arrives in the area. He lays out a village green (later Pulteney Square).


A one-room log schoolhouse, paid for by subscription, is built south of Pittsford. John Barrows is the first teacher. It will be the only one in the area for ten years. ** Early settler Simon Stone builds a sawmill and a grist mill just to the west of the settlement.


The Philadelphia office of the Holland Land Company hires surveyor Joseph Ellicott to mark out company-owned land in the northwestern part of the state.


Free black Asa Dunbar establishes a settlement in the Rochester area, on the east side of the Genesee River, which will one day become the Corn Hill neighborhood. ** Benjamin Barton sells his mill site on the upper falls of the Genesee to Sir William Pulteney and associates. ** Ebenezer “Indian” Allen abandons his unprofitable mill on the Genesee and moves to Canada.

Charles Williamson

Williamson clears a road between Palmyra and Sodus Point in the spring - the Old Sodus Road. He builds an inn on Sodus Bay and lays out 100 building lots. ** He acquires the Genesee Mill Lot once belonging to Ebenezer Allan in the future Rochester, from Robert Morris. ** Charles Cameron, an agent of Williamson, begins a village at Lyons. ** Williamson sends Joseph Biven to build a tavern on the Conhocton River (Biven's Corners, then North Cohocton. ** Williamson has Bath's main square (Pulteney) cleared except for a Liberty Pine Tree and has a blockhouse erected, in case of a Canadian-Indian invasion. He also has a one-story frame courthouse and a log jail built. When he learns of the U. S. victory over the Indians at Fallen Timbers he demolishes the blockhouse and builds 40 log homes, a theater and a racetrack. He offers ready-made farms for sale.

© 2012 David Minor / Eagles Byte


Padraic Mac Aodhagain said...

Free black Asa Dunbar establishes a settlement in the Rochester area, on the east side of the Genesee River, which will one day become the Corn Hill neighborhood.

Some references to Asa Dunbar note that his settlement was in the Irondiquoit area. Also, isn't Corn Hill on the west side of the river?

BTW - Your yearly highlights are great.

David Minor said...


(Just moved Corn Hill)