Gazetteer of New York, 1860 & 1861 page 474
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fu.fimhes a beautiful and valuable building stone; and nearly all of the limestone strata furnish
quicklime of a superior quality.


In variety, strength, and fertility, and in all the elements of perpetual productiveness, the soil
of this co. is not surpassed by that of any other eo. in the State. It is extensively derived from
the decomposition of the underlying rocks.1 But the northern towns are nearly all covered with
drift, and their soil is generally a light, sandy loam, alternating with heavy clay. The vast de*
posits of lime upon the hills go far toward enriching the soil of the valleys.2 In the central and
n. portions the marshes are covered many feet thick with peat and muck formation, formed by
the decaying vegetation of centuries, and furnishing the elements of almost boundless future
fertility.3 More than one-half the entire tobacco crop of the State is raised in this co.

The streams of the co. nearly all flow in a northerly direction and discharge their waters through
Oswego River into Lake Ontario. In their course from the highlands they often flow over perpen¬
dicular ledges and through narrow ravines, forming a great number of beautiful cascades, the
principal of which will be more particularly noticed in the description of the different towns. Os¬
wego River, which forms a part of the
e. boundary of Lysander, is . formed by the junction of
Seneca and Oneida Rivers. Seneca River4 enters the n. part of the co. from the w. and pursues a
winding course until it unites with Oneida River. It is a broad, deep stream, and has upon it one
series of rapids, which has been converted into a valuable water-power. In the lower part of its
course it contains a broad sweep or bend from a s.
e. to a n. w. direction; and at its extreme s. point
it receives the Onondaga Outlet from the s. Oneida River, the outlet of Oneida Lake, is a deep
sluggish, crooked stream, 18 mi. in length, and forms a link in the chain of internal navigable
waters of the State. Limestone and Butternut Creeks, after flowing through narrow and deep
parallel valleys among the hills, unite in the sr. part of the town of Manlius, and flow into Chit¬
tenango Creek a few mi. above its entrance into Oneida Lake. Onondaga and Nine Mile Creeks—■
the latter being the outlet of Otisco Lake—both flow into Onondaga Lake. Otisco Inlet, a small
stream entering the co. from the s., may be considered the head branch of Nine Mile Creek.
Skaneateles Outlet discharges its waters into Seneca River just beyond the w. border of the co.
Several small streams take their rise in the s. part of the co., and, flowing s., form the head branches
of Tioughnioga River. The principal lakes in the co. are Oneida, Onondaga, and Cross Lakes,
upon the level land of the N., and Skaneateles and Otisco Lakes, in deep valleys among the hills
of the s. Oneida Lake, extending along the
n. e. border of the co., is about 30 mi. in length; and
it forms a portion of the chain of the internal navigable waters of the State.4 Onondaga Lake,
celebrated for the salt springs which are found in its immediate vicinity, is about 5 mi. long.5 Cross
Lake, upon the
n. w. border of the co., is a shallow body of water, about 5 mi. long, and may be
considered as simply an enlargement of Seneca River. Skaneateles Lake, 16 mi. long, occupies a
deep and narrow valley among the hills, and is considered one of the finest sheets of water in the
State. > The banks along its s. part rise precipitously to a height of several hundred ft., and the
scenery is singularly wild and rugged. Toward the n. the summits decline in height, and the
land gradually and smoothly slopes down to the very edge of the water, forming a rich and ex¬
ceedingly beautiful landscape. Otisco Lake is about 4 mi. long, and is nearly surrounded by steep
hills, 400 to 800 ft. above its surface. In the region occupied by the waterlime and Onondaga lime¬
stone formations are many deep rents and fissures, from 50 to 200 ft. below the surface, some of
which contain little sheets of water. These remarkable depressions are evidently the result of

hard soil to work,—being mixed with stones,—but of a most
fruitful character. On still farther s. a grazing district takes
the place of a wheat growing one. This change, however, may
not be due entirely to changes in the composition of the forma¬
tions. The country has become decidedly hilly. We now find
steep slopes, inclined surfaces, deep ravines, rounded hills,—in
fine, all the characteristics of good fields and walks for sheep
and cows, for sweet grass and pure streams of water.”—■

4 This stream forms the drainage of nearly all of the small
lakes in Central N. Y. Large sums of money have been ex¬
pended in deepening its channel at Jacks Beefs, upon the w.
border of the co., for the purpose of draining the extensive
marshes near the outlet of Cayuga Lake. The enterprise has
been partially successful, and a large amount of valuable land
has been reclaimed.

6 The outlet of this lake is navigable ; and a canal 7 mi. in
length connects Wood Creek, one of its tributaries, with the
Erie Canal at Higginsville.

6 A low, semi-marshy piece of ground, about 2 mi. in length
and 1 in width, extends southward from the head of this lake,
and is bordered by steep bluffs 15 to 25 ft. high,—probably the
ancient border of the lake. In and around this marsh the salt
springs are found.


“These systems of rocks constitute the basis of our soils;
their particles, separated by the action of the elements, hare
been decomposed and in process of time rendered fruitful. Be¬
sides these rocks, we have beds of gravel and rounded stones,
that have been brought to us from the far North by water; and
we often see large boulders of granitic rocks that, were brought
here on islands of ice that once drifted about in the sea that, in
a period far back in the world’s history, submerged all this part
of the continent. The springs that flow from the lime rocks
deposit tufa,—in many instances in sufficient quantities to make
farm fences and to burn lime. So highly are many of these
springs charged with carbonate of lime that as soon as the water
meets the air it parts with a part of the lime and incrusts
leaves and twigs and whatsoever may be encountered. These
substances, perhaps, then decay, leaving perfect forms upon the
solid rock.”—
Ag. Address of Hon. George Guides.


“There are large deposits of marl in this co.; one just e. of
Syracuse is finely shown by the rail road cutting through it. The


great Cicero Swamp is rich in this valuable fertilizer. Lake


Lake is surrounded by a marl bed. The lakes of Tully are also
Snarl lakes.”—
Ag. Address of Hon. Geo. Geddes.


• “As we go south, the ragged front of the limestone gives us a


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