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Canaseraga Village


Canaseraga Village Hall is located at 10 Main Street, Canaseraga, NY 14822; phone: 607-545-8963.

Beginnings [1]

The Village of Canaseraga is named after the creek that flows through the valley in which the village stands; the creek empties into the Genesee River in Livingston County to the north. The area was known by the Native Americans as Ga-nose-ga-go but often printed as Canaseraga. It is thought to mean "among the elms." This entire area of New York State west of Seneca Lake, including Allegany County, was part of the original 6,200,000 acre Phelps and Gorham tract purchase of 1788. Due to financial difficulties of the original purchasers, part of the tract was sold to Robert Morris in 1790, and the Village of Canaseraga is located within the area subsequently known as the Morris Reserve.

In 1805 four men established the first white settlement on the Canaseraga Creek, but very little is known about them. A year later, Samuel Boylan, a native of New Jersey moved from nearby Yates County and purchased 160 ares of the Morris Reserve where the village now stands. Several men from Pennsylvania followed, settling in the town of Burns, and by the end of the first quarter of the 19th century, the town contained several scattered farms and two more-populous hamlets, Burns and Canaseraga.

By 1840 Canaseraga became the principal center of the town, and was the site of two grist mills along the creek. In that year, the Erie Railroad and the Genesee Valley Canal commenced, holding great promise for the development of Allegany County, but in particular within the areas along the railroad route. Two years later, work was suspended on the railroad due to internal disputes, but resumed in 1849. The line was completed in 1851, passing through Canaseraga.

The hamlet was incorporated as the Village of Canaseraga in 1892.

  1. William G. Dibble, President, Allegany Trails, Inc. and Patricia R. Nobles, and Anthony Opalka, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, Canaseraga Four Corners Historic District, Allegany County, New York, nomination document, 2001, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.

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