712 WYOMING COUNTY.
lies upon the n. border of the co., w. of the center. Its surface is a rolling upland, broken by the
ravines of the streams. In the e. part are several considerable hills with long gradual slopes.
Tonawanda Creek, the principal stream, flows through the n. w. corner, and receives numerous
branches from the e., the largest of which is Crow Creek. The soil is a clay and gravelly loam.
Attica, (p.v.,) upon Tonawanda Creek, in the n.w. part of the town, was incorp. May 2,
1837. It contains a flourishing union school, a bank, a newspaper office, a flouring mill, and 5
churches. Pop. 1,184. Attica Center (p. o.) and Vernal are hamlets. The first settle¬
ment was made in 1802, by Zera Phelps.1 The first religious services were held Sept. 21, 1809,
by Rev. Royal Phelps, at which time the first church (Cong.) was formed, with 5 members.2
BENNINGTON—was formed from Sheldon, March 6, 1818. It is the n. w. corner town
of the co. Its surface is a rolling upland, broken by the ravines of small streams. Cayuga Creek
and its branches drain the central, and Murder Creek the n. part of the town. Tonawanda Creek
flows through the s. e. corner. The soil is a clayey, gravelly and sandy loam. Bennington
Center (Bennington p.o.) contains 3 churches and 30 dwellings; and Cowlesville, (p.v.,)
in the n. w. part of the town, 2 churches and 206 inhabitants. Folsomdale (p. o.) is a hamlet,
on Cayuga Creek, and has a valuable water-power. The first settlement was made near the center
of the town, in 1802, by John Tolies, Jacob Wright, and William Barber, from Yt.s The first re¬
ligious services were conducted by Rev. Peter B. Root, in. 1805. The first church (M.E.) was
formed in 1807.*
CASTIEE (Cas-tlle)—was formed from Perry, Feb. 27, 1821. It is the central town upon
the e. border of the co. Its surface is a rolling and terraced upland, broken by ‘the deep valleys
of the streams. Genesee River, forming a portion of the e. boundary, is bordered by steep
banks 300 to 350 ft. above the water. In some places the faces of the bluffs are perpendicular
ledges 200 ft. high. Numerous small tributaries of the river have worn deep lateral channels in
these bluffs. The valley of Silver Lake occupies a wide and shallow basin in the n. part of the
town.3 Its outlet is toward the n. Wolf Creek rises in a swamp near the head of the lake and
flows s. A wide, level valley, bordered by low terraces, extends from the e. shore of the lake
and opens into the valley of Wolf Creek at Castile Village. The soil is a clay and gravelly loam.
Castile (p.v.) lies on Wolf Creek, in the s.w. part of the town. It is a station on the B. &
N.Y. City R.R. Pop. 682. St. Helena, (p.v.,) on Genesee River, in the slfe. corner of the
town, contains 20 dwellings. The first settlement was made in 1808, by Robert Whalley, from
R. I., 1 mi. e. of Castile Village.6 The first religious services (Bap.) were held near the s. end
of Silver Lake, in 1816, by Elder Benj. Luther.7
CHINA—was formed from Sheldon, March 6, 1818. Java was taken off in 1832. It is the
s. w. corner town of the co. Its surface is a rolling or hilly upland, broken by valleys. Catta¬
raugus Creek flows s. w. through near the center of the town, and receives several tributaries, the
principal of which is Clear Creek, from the s. From the valleys the town spreads out into a
rolling region, with long gradual slopes arable to their summits. The highest point is the ridge
in the n. e., which is 1,100 ft. above Lake Erie, as determined by actual survey. The soil of
the upland is a clayey and in the valleys a gravelly loam. Arcade (China p. o.) is situated
at the junction of Cattaraugus and Clear Creeks, in the s. w. part of the town. It has a fine
in the alders at the foot of this lake while Gen. Sullivan
was laying waste the Indian villages upon the Genesee. In
the summer of 1855 it was reported that an immense serpent,
100 ft. long, had been seen in this lake. So well was the story
apparently authenticated that thousands of visitors came from
all parts of the country to obtain a sight of his snakeship.
A burlesque account of the capture of the serpent, which
appeared in the Buffalo Republic, raised the excitement to the
highest pitch; and immediately afterward the whole humbug
6 Soon after, a settlement was made at the foot of the lake, in
the w. part of the town, called the “ Tollman Settlement.” Ziba
Hurd and Jonathan Gilbert, from Vt., were the first settlers at
Castile Village, in 1816. The first child bom was Jane McRay,
in 1813; and the first death was that of Laura Wilcox, in 1815.
The first school was taught in 1816, by Anna Bennett, from
Vt. Robert Whalley kept the first inn, and erected the first
sawmill, on Wolf Creek, below Castile Village, in 1811. John
Card and Sylvester Lathrop built the first gristmill, on Lot 40,
in 1820; the first store was kept by Lemuel Eldridge and M.
Frost, in 1815.
i The census reports 4 churches; Cong., Bap., M. E., and
Among the other early settlers were Deacon Porter, Nath’l
Sprout, and Maj. P. Adams. The first child horn was Harriet
Phelps, July 25,1803; tho first marriage, that of Stephen Crow
and Lucy Elwell; and the first death, that of Thomas Mather,
in the winter of 1803. Sophia Williams taught the first
school, in 1807; Daniel Stanton kept the first inn, in 1809;
Fitch, the first store; and Zera Phelps built the first mill,
The census reports 6 churches; Cong., Presb., F. W. Bap.,
Bap., M. E., and R. C.
Mary Jemison, the “ old white woman” with her family, hid