Transcibed by Kristy Lawrie Gravlin - hannah@teleport.com


The Town of Byron, Genesee County, New York as taken from The Gazetteer and Business Directory of Genesee County, N.Y. for 1869-70; Compiled and published by Hamilton Child, Syracuse, NY, 1869. Byron, named from Lord Byron, was formed from Bergen, April 4, 1820. It lies on the north border of the County, east of the center. The surface is gently undulating, with a slight inclination towards the north. Black Creek flows north to near the center of the town, receiving as tributaries Bigelow and Spring Creeks, then turns and flows north-east into Bergen. The soil is a fine quality of sand and gravelly loam. A sulphur spring, from which issues carburetted hydrogen gas, is found on Black Creek, a little north of Byron. An acid spring, known as the "Sour Spring", is found in the south-west part of the town. This spring issues from a hillock about 230 feet long, 100 feet broad and elevated about four or five feet above the plain. The strength of the acid is increased by drouth [sic], and in some places it is quite concentrated and nearly dry in its combination with the charred vegetable coat which everywhere covers the hillock to the depth of from five to forty inches. Byron (p. v.) situated near the center of the town, on Black Creek, contains two churches, viz., Presbyterian and Methodist, one hotel, two stores, several mechanic shops, a foundry and about 150 inhabitants. South Byron, (p.v.) in the south part, is a station on the N. Y. C. R. R., and contains a Methodist church, a hotel, three stores, a school, two wagon shops, three blacksmith shops and about 200 inhabitants. North Byron is a hamlet containing a Baptist church and about a dozen houses. The town was first settled by Bonhomie PRESTON in 1807, on lot 197, about a mile north of Byron Center. Elisha TAYLOR, from Otsego Co., located on lot 186 in 1810; and Theater T. HOLBROOK, from Cayuga Co., Whitney CARPENTER, from Rhode Island, and Elisha MILLER, from Pennsylvania, on lot 2 in 1809. Elijah LOOMIS settled on lot 197 in 1808; T. M. FENN settled on the same lot in 1809, previous to the survey of the 100,000 Acre Tract. Nat SPAFFORD, from Cayuga Co., settled in Bergen in 1807, and in 1812 removed to Byron, about one mile east of the center. Cyrenius WALKER, with his father, from Berkshire Co., Mass., settled on lots 41 and 29, in July, 1811. Nathan HOLT, from Otsego Co., and Asa MERRILL, from Oneida Co., came in in 1810. Mr. MERRILL located on lots 162 and 174, and still resides there. He started from Oneida County for his new home with two yoke of oxen and a sled. Soon after crossing Cayuga Lake, the snow disappeared, and with his family he stopped at a tavern and tried in vain to procure a wagon with which to proceed on his journey. At length he went to the woods and, with the aid of the landlord, cut an oak tree about three feet in diameter, and having sawed off blocks for wheels, a vehicle was constructed upon which he placed his sled and other loading and came to Byron. He set out an orchard of about seven acres, in which is a tree eight feet two inches in circumference, the branches covering a space seventeen paces in diameter. Andrew DRIBBLE, from Massachusetts, purchased lot 7 in 1811, and located with his family in 1816. Levi FISK, from Franklin County, Mass., settled near Byron Center in 1811. Captain James PENDALL was an early settler on lot 78, where Erastus CASH now resides. In front of the house stands a large willow tree with a double trunk, each about three and a half feet in diameter. This tree was once a riding whip which Mr. Pendall used on his return from LeRoy. It was set in the ground by Mrs. Pendall and has produced the present tree. Paul BALLARD, from Oneida Co., settled in the south-west part of the town in 1812. The first birth was that of a son of Elisha TAYLOR, in 1809; the first marriage that of Samuel MONTGOMERY and Polly PARKS, in 1811; and the first death that of a son of Mr. HASKINS. Theater T. HOLBROOK taught the first school, in 1810-11; Ira NEWBURG kept the first inn, in 1815; and Amos HEWETT the first store, in 1813. William SHEPARD erected the first saw mill in 1813, and Asa WILLIAMS the first grist mill, in 1814. The first religious services were held in 1809 by Rev. Royal PHELPS, of the Presbyterian Church, from Cayuga County. The first Church (Bap.) was organized in 1810 by Elder Benjamin M. PARKS. The population of the town in 1865 was 1,645, and its area 20,531 acres. There are nine school districts employing the same number of teachers. The number of children of school age is 557; the number attending school, 410; the average attendance, 204, and the amount expended for school purposes during the year ending September 30, 1868, was $3,507.99

Back to Byron

Back to Genesee Main Page