Friendship Chronicle, April 6, 1881.
Genesee Valley Canal Railroad
New York capitalists are now negotiating for a controlling interest in the Genesee Valley Canal Railroad, with the intention of pushing it forward to a speedy completion. The road under the present company will be constructed, and work will be commenced within thirty days or as soon as the frost is out on the ground, but the New York men intend, if they secure a management of the road, To make it a part of a line that will give the city a connection with Pittsburgh. The capitalists referred to are the ones who purchased the Rochester, Nunda & Pennsylvania road with the intentions of extending it beyond Nunda to connect with other roads. The land over which they must pass to accomplish this plan was however, so uneven that it was almost impracticable to construct a railroad over it, and they have now decided to throw up their plans in that direction and, if possible, secure the Genesee Valley Canal road, and with this make the connections desired. Mr. L. P. Ross, one of the directors of the Valley road, has just returned from New York, where he met the parties who wished to purchase the road and talked the matter over with them. He expressed the opinion the transfer would be effected, and enough stock be sold to give a controlling interest to the New York men. If such should be the case, the road will follow the proposed route of the Genesee Valley Canal road as far as Mount Morris, from there to Nunda, the track of the Rochester, Nunda & Pennsylvania road would be used, entrance along the canal as far as Olean. From this point, connections will be made with the Buffalo Pittsburgh & Western road by way of Oil City. The sale will be effected, if at all, within two weeks, and there seems to be little doubt, but that it will be. The connection will greatly enhance the value of the road to the city and vicinity.–– Rochester Herald.
Friendship Chronicle, April 27, 1881.
Transcribed by Joseph Damiano.
The Buffalo Courier puts the Genesee Valley Railroad matters in their proper light as follows :- The people in the Genesee Valley are having no end of trouble in their efforts to get a railroad constructed on the line of the abandoned Valley canal. At last year’s session of the legislature their interests were sold out by some of their own representatives, and now a bill has been introduced intended to permit parties interested in the franchise to deflect from and leave the line of the canal at will in the construction of the proposed road. To protest against this bill, a unannounced meeting was held last week at Nunda, at which, among other things, it was declared:
That the legislature of the state, at the request of those who resided upon the line of the Genesee Valley Canal, and whose interests and business had been injuriously affected by such abandonment, granted the banks and prism of said canal to a corporation, for the express purpose, and no other, of securing to such petitioners the benefits of a railroad.
Such corporation accepted said grant and executed the bond required upon the obligation thereby imposed to construct a railroad as there is provided.
We submit that any departure from the provisions of the original act, whereby any locality is injuriously affected, is a gross breach of faith with the people, and cannot be justified.
That the plan of the present owners, and contemplated successors to the original grantees, if carried out, would deprive many of the most important points on the line of this canal of benefit from the proposed railroad.
Such an act would be a great outrage upon the rights and interests of the people injured thereby. The whole object and purpose of the grant would be diverted from its original plan, and in many instances the residents of certain localities who where influential in obtaining their grant from the state, would be made to suffer to satisfy the greed of the speculators who have no interest in any locality through which the canal passes.
There can be no question as to the justice of this protest. The valuable franchise was granted by the state for a “nominal” consideration, with the primary purpose of making up to the people along the line the damage they suffered by the abandonment of the water-way. It was accepted on these terms, and to change the latter now would be a branch of faith not the less gross because accomplished under the form of law. Portage and Nunda are the towns which it is said, are to be left out in the cold in case this precious piece of special legislation is consumed.
Cuba Patriot, Friday, June 11, 1882
Genesee Valley Canal Railroad
From the Rochester Express we clip the following: "A construction train is now running on the Genesee Valley Canal from this city to Fowlerville, or Spencer's Basin within10 miles of Mt. Morris. Between Mt. Morris and Fowlerville the grading is completed for the distance of six miles, and the iron will be laid as fast as possible.
“The remaining four miles is very heavy work, and will require a few weeks to grade. The ballasting is nearly finished between here and Fowlerville. The bridge at Ross crossing over the Erie road will be completed within about 10 days. Another postponement is necessary relative to running of trains to Swains and Mt. Morris, owing to some delay on the Allegany Central. There are now six construction trains on the line of the G.V.C. R.R., and eight new locomotives have been ordered by the Buffalo, New York & Philadelphia road, which is to operate the line."
Cuba Evening Review, June 24, 1882
The people of Belfast were quite excited when the smoking engine on the Genesee Valley railroad arrived in their town for the first time. The Press says: "There was no little anxiety among our people as the track laying approached the Hughes street crossing followed closely by the engine.
"The weather was not favorable but the work went on. Norm. Holden took a couple of kegs of lager to the track layers in order to counteract the moisture outside with internal moisture. People watched and counted the rails, and when the work was finally done, the men marched into Main Street, where powder was burned, and three hearty cheers were given.
"The ladies had prepared a bountiful supper to be served in the park, but the rain prevented; and it was served in the large room of the Renwick store. It was well served and well relished by the goodly number who partook of it. Mr. Daily of the Exchange, also gave a dinner to a number of railroad friends and invited guests, which passed off pleasantly."
Cuba Evening Review, Tues., Oct. 31, 1882 Rochester Division, B., N.Y. & P.
According to announcement the Rochester Division of the Buffalo, New York & Philadelphia road, heretofore known as the Genesee Valley Canal railroad, was opened yesterday. The time-table gives the schedule time for two trains, of the second class, which run northward Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and southward Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The trains are local freight and passenger.
The time of the northward train at the most important stations is as follows: Cuba 7:25 a.m.; Black Creek 8:01; Belfast 9:00; Fillmore 10:18; Nunda 12:40 p.m.; Mt. Morris 2:38; Rochester 7:05 p.m.
The southward trains are as follows: Rochester 6:15 a.m.; Mt. Morris 11:05; Nunda 12:40 p.m.; Fillmore 2:55; Belfast 4:20; Black Creek 5:21; Cuba 6:00 p.m.
The time is necessarily slow at first, especially with local traffic. Fast trains will undoubtedly be put on soon. The telegraph line along the route is fast nearing completion.
Cuba Patriot, Feb.. 9, 1883
Along the Line
The Livingston Republican of last week contained an interesting article on the Genesee Valley Canal Railroad, by a writer who signs himself "Robert Morris," of Mt. Morris, in which various towns along the route taken by the recent press excursion are taken note of. A few of the historical points of some of the towns named are copied, as follows:
Caneadea. - This town, in Allegany county, is famous as the spot where the Seneca Indians had their council house, now removed to Glen Iris. Here Mary Jemison settled after a journey of 600 miles on foot with her papoose on her way from Fort Duquesne, now Pittsburgh, to Little Beardstown.
This place, history says, was the spot where Captain Horatio Jones was taken prisoner by the Indians, and successfully ran the gauntlet. The town was first settled in 1803 by parties from Pennsylvania. Widow Brady kept the first inn in 1810. James Hoyt built the first saw mill in 1816.
Angelica. - This old township is widely known as the home of the Church family, so intimately connected with the early settlement of Allegany county. The ancestral residence of this family is about two miles from town.
The first settlement was made here in 1802 by Philip Church. He erected the first saw and grist mill in 1803. Joseph Taylor kept the pioneer inn in 1804. Angelica took its name from the wife of John B. Church and daughter of General Philip Schuyler.
Angelica was formed from the town of Leicester, then in Genesee county, in 1805. Before 1805 the residents of that town had to travel to old Leicester to attend town meeting, and at that early period Angelica had her mail from Bath, forty miles distant, and only once a month. At that time Angelica paid $2.50 bounty for every wolf caught in the town. This place has an ancient court house built in 1818.
Belfast - This town was formed in 1824, but there were early settlements on the river in 1803, by three brothers, Chamberlain, from Pennsylvania. Joseph and Raymond opened the first hotel, David Sanford the first saw and gristmill in 1809. The first religious meeting was held at the residence of N. Reynolds.
Friendship. - This is a flourishing lumber town. Its early settlers came in 1806 and 1807. The first child born in the town was Sherman Haskins, in a sugar camp; S. Gates had the first inn; James Sanford and Sally Harrison, the pioneer married couple, in 1809; Pelatiah Morgan, the pioneer schoolmaster, in 1810.
Cuba. - The Indian oil creek reservation is in this town. The Oil Creek Reservoir, built by the State for the Genesee Valley Canal, costing about $150,000 and covering 1,500 acres, is also in this town. Th first settlers in Cuba came i n 1817 from Connecticut, viz: Abbott, Hall, Frier, Bennett, Cole, Hawley. S. Cole was the pioneer inn keeper in 1814. David Row taught the early school in 1822.
Olean. - Around the town are about 200 oil tanks, and also some manufacturing interests, and has a population of about 6,000. The first settlers of this town came about 1804. The road to this place from Angelica was surveyed by Major Moses VanCampen, of Revolutionary War memory. The first lumber rafted down the Allegany river was by Dr. Bradley, Follett and Jedediah Strong in 1807. Sylvanus Russell kept the first tavern in 1808, Levi Gregory the pioneer store in 1814.