Gazetteer of New York, 1860 & 1861 page 486
Click on the image to view a larger, bitmap (.bmp) image suitable for printing.


Click on the image above for a larger, bitmap image suitable for printing.


missionary from Mass., was the first preacher. The first church (Presbyterian) was formed
at an early day, at the Hill.1


OTISCO—was formed from Pompey, Marcellus, and Tully, March 21,1806. It is an interior
town, lying s. w. of the center of the co. Its surface is principally occupied by the high ridge
between the valleys of Onondaga Creek and Otisco Lake. The declivities of the hills are generally
steep and the summits rolling, and elevated 800 to 1,000 ft. above the valleys and 1,600 to 1,700
above tide. Otisco Lake is 772 ft. above tide. It lies upon the w. border of the town, in a valley

1,000 ft. below the summits of the hills. Bear Mountain,2 in the jr. w. part, overhanging the
valley of Onondaga Creek, is one of the principal elevations. The soil is generally a sandy or
gravelly loam, mixed with clay, and well adapted to grazing. Otisco, (p.v.,) situated upon the
high ridge near the center of the town, contains 30 houses; and Amber, (p. v.,) at the foot of
Otisco Lake, 25. Maple Grove is a p. o. in the
n. e. corner. The first settler was Chauncey
Bust, from Northampton, Mass., who moved his family from La Fayette in April, 1801. During
this year and the following, a large number of settlers arrived, principally from Mass. and Conn.
and the whole town filled up rapidly.? The • first religious service was a prayer meeting, held in

Sept. 1801, at the house of Rust. The first church (Cong.) was formed May 9,1803, by Rev.

Hugh Wallace. There are now two churches in town; Cong, and M. E. This town is noted for
being the birthplace and residence of several persons of distinguished literary reputation.4

POMPEY5—was formed in Jan. 1789. Fabius and a part of Onondaga were taken off in
; a part of Otisco in 1806; and La Fayette in 1825. It lies on the e. border of the co., s. of
the center, and upon the high, rolling ridge which lies between the
e. branch of Limestone Creek
and Butternut Creek. The highest summit is 906 feet above the surface of Butternut Creek,
near the La Fayette
r. r. station, 1,343 ft. above the canal at Syracuse and 1,743 ft. above tide.
The general ridge is subdivided into 3 ridges by the valleys of the 2 w. branches of Limestone
Creek. These valleys are 200 to 300 ft. below the summits and are bordered by steep hillsides.
The streams that drain the s. part of the town flow in a southerly direction. Pratts Falls, upon
the w. branch of Limestone Creek, are 137 ft. high; and within a few rods of them are several
other fine cascades. Near the
n. line, upon the same creek, is a cascade of 70 ft. Just e. of the
co. line, near Delphi, on the
E. branch of the same stream, are 2 other fine cascades. Carpenters
Pond, in the s.
e. part, covers an area of about 30 acres. The soil is a strong, clayey loam.
Pompey Hill, (Pompey p.o.,) on the summit of the ridge,6 contains 5 churches and the Pom¬
pey Academy. Pop. 270. Delphi, (p.v.,) upon Limestone Creek, in the
s.e. corner, contains
3 churches and 219 inhabitants. Watervale, (p. v.,) upon Limestone Creek,
n. of the center,
contains a grist and saw mill and 20 houses. Oran, (p. v.,) in the
n. e. corner, contains a church
and 82 inhabitants. Pompey Center7 (p. o.) is a hamlet. In the
s.e. corner, above Delphi,
are an edge tool factory, and a woolen mill not in operation. The first settler was Ebenezer Butler,
who located on Lot 65 in 1792.8 The first church (Presb.) was formed in 1794; the first preacher

word, and in a short time died of grief. The first child horn was
Amanda Danforth, daughter of Asa Danforth, jr., Oct. 14,1789.
Dr. Gordon Needham taught the first school, in 1795; Comfort
Tyler kept the first inn; George Kibbe the first store; Gen. Dan¬
forth built the first gristmill, in 1794; and Turner Fenner the
first sawmill, in 1793.

1 The census reports 11 churches; 5 M. E., 2 Presb., Cong.,
Bap., Wes. Meth., and Union.

2 Named from the great number of bears that infested it when
the country was first settled.

3 Among the first settlers were Jonathan B. Nichols, Charles
and Benoni Merriman, Solomon Judd, and Lemon Gaylord, in
1801; Otis Baker, Noah Parsons, Nathaniel Loomis, Amos and
Isaac Cowles, in 1802; and Benjamin Cowles, Josiah Clark, Daniel
Bennett, Elias and Jared Thayer, Henry Elethrop, Samuel,
Ebenezer, and Luther French, Jared and Noah Parsons, and
Rufus Clapp, soon after. Lucy Cowles (afterward wife of Rev.
Geo. Colton) taught the first school, in 1802. The first child
born was Timothy Rust, March 22,1802; and the first death,
that of Nathaniel Dady, jr., killed by the fall of a tree, July 19,
1802. Dan’l Bennett kept the first inn, in 1802; and Michael
Johnson the first store, in 1808. Charles Merriman built the
first gristmill, in 1806.

4 Willis Gaylord, widely known as the editor of the Genesee
Farmer and Albany Cultivator, and as a refined and graceful
contributor to the light literature of the day, came into town
With his father, from Bristol, Conn., in 1801. He was then 9
years of age; and he resided here until a few years before his
death, which occurred in 1844. Willis and Lewis Gaylord Clark,
twin brothers, were born in this town in April, 1808. The former
is known as a poet, the author of “ Ollipodiana,” and as the editor
of the Philadelphia Gazette; and the latter has obtained a
national reputation as the editor of the Knickerbocker Maga¬
zine, a position which he has held for the last 25 years. Willis
died in 1841. Their father was Eliakim Clark, an officer in the
Revolution, and their mother was sisfer to Willis Gaylord. Rev.
Geo. Colton, father of Owen Colton, author of a series of Greek
text books, and of Geo. H. Colfon, founder and editor of the
American Review, was many years a resident of the town.

5 Named by the Indians Ote-ge-ga-ja-ke, “a place of much
grass, openings or prairies.” Another name given to this locality,
not often repeated, and about which there is much superstitious
reserve, is Ote-queh-sah-he-eh, “the field of blood, or bloody
ground,—a place where many have been slain.” It has been said
that no Indian ever visits this neighborhood. They certainly dis¬
like to converse much about it.—
Clark’sOnondaga, Vol. II, p. 325.

6 Water from one side of the roof of the hotel at this place
finds its way into the St. Lawrence, and from the other into
Chesapeake Bay.

7 Locally known as “ Greens Comers.”

8 Moses Blower and Moses Savage cam9 in the same year.
Among the early settlers upon the hills were Artemus Bishop,
Josiah Holbrook, Timothy Sweet, John and Samuel Jerome,
Joseph Smith, Jesse Butler, Dr. Deodatus Clarke, Jacob Hoar,
Jas. Olcott, Trueworthy Cook, Selah Cook, Noadiah and Epi-
phas Olcott, Dr. Samuel Beach, and families named Hinsdale,
Hibbard, Messenger, Western, and Daniel Allen. The early
settlers in the e. hollow were Samuel Draper, James McClure,
Wm. Cook, Ozias Burr, Elihu Barber, John Lamb, Daniel

Thomas,  Savage, Daniel Hubbard, Wm. Shankland, and

David Sweet. The first child born was Sally Hoar, about 1794;
the first male child born was Orange Butler; the first marriage
was that of Zachariah Kinne and Diadama Barnes; and the first
death, that of Mrs. Jas. Cravath. Samuel Clement taught the
first school in the town and co., on Lot 28, in 1794. Ebenezer
Butler kept the first inn, in 1792; Henry Seymour the first store;


This page was written in HTML using a program written in Python 3.2