This historic village takes its name from William Graves who settled here in 1800. About 1796, a Major Greer settled here and had a small tannery. Mr. Graves was from Vermont; he traded his horse and some belongings with Greer for the tannery and went into business in the wilderness. In 1806 John Burr built a saw mill. The first grist mill was built by the father of Colonel J. E. Hinman of Utica. In 1813 William and Hobart Graves built a carding mill. That same year Reuben Sacket built a trip hammer shop. A post office was established in 1848 with Elijah Seavey as postmaster.