The town lies upon the center of the south border of the county, and contains 23,349 acres. The surface is very rough and hilly, the declivities of the hills being mostly too steep for profitable cultivation. At various places outcropping's of sand. stone appear. Near the center and near the highest point in the town is a rough tract of sandstone rock covering 100 to 200 acres. The surface is covered with moss, on which the timber has grown. Near the center of this tract is an elevation of ten to fifteen feet, covering about an acre, and composed mostly of huge blocks of sandstone, which is destitute of vegetation, with the exception of a few shrubs and stunted trees. Honeoye Creek and its branches, flowing in deep, narrow ravines, form the principal drainage. The soil upon the uplands is a clayey and sandy loam, and in the valleys a gravelly loam and alluvium. Much of the town is yet covered with forests, and lumbering is the chief pursuit of the people. Agriculture has gained a foothold in the valleys and in a section known as the "Niles Hill district," where some well improved farms are seen. The supply of pine is well nigh exhausted.

The population of the town in 1870 was 766; of whom 665 were native, 101, foreign, 741, white and 25, colored.

Shongo (Alma p.o.) (formerly known as Honeoye) is situated in the south-west corner of the town, on Honeoye Creek, and contains a hotel, store, blacksmith shop, saw and shingle mill, ten dwellings, and about forty inhabitants.

Pikeville (named from a Mr. Pike, who erected the saw mills there,) was once a thriving lumbering village, but, since the burning of the saw and shingle mills located there, has gone to decay.

Settlement was begun in 1833, by Warren Hough, from Quebec, Canada, who located in the south part. A man named Longcore settled on lot 20, about the same time, or a little later. Azor Hurlbutt was born in Connecticut, Jan. 27, 1804, and removed with his father to Otsego Co., when only three years old. He removed thence to Alma in 1834, and settled on lot 26. When he came there was only a foot path east toward the Genesee, a sled path toward Honeoye Corners, and a road underbrushed toward Pikeville. He has held the office of Justice of the Peace for about thirty years, the last sixteen in succession. He still lives where he first settled. He built and opened the first hotel in Alma, in 1837. His daughter, Emeline, who was born Sept. 1, 1836, was the first child born in the town. Samuel B. Stebbins, a native of Otsego Co., removed thence in the fore part of July, 1836, and settled on lot 30. When he came, he says, there were but five others living in the south part of the town. They were, in addition to Hurlbutt and Hough, Wm. Smith and two others named Harding and Hunter. He has since lived in the same place. Mr. Stebbins relates that his daughters, Achsa Ann and Phebe, aged respectively twelve and eight years, killed a wolf about the year 1846. While he was away from home the children saw in a clearing back of the house, an animal which they supposed to be a fox, but which proved to be a wolf, young and very poor. They set the dog on him, but he did not run till the latter reached him and worried him some. The dog followed close, snapping at his heels at every opportunity. The wolf soon took refuge under the roots of a fallen tree, but the aperture was too small to fully conceal him or to admit of his turning round in it. The girls followed and saw that they could reach his hind legs, and one of them pulled him out while the other stood ready to despatch him. Myron Allen settled in the northwest part, on lot 1, in 1839. Jared Emerson settled in the town in 1840. Wm. Andrus, from Steuben Co., settled on lot 22 in the spring of 1843, and, with the exception of two years, has since lived on the same place. Joseph Smith moved in from Michigan in 1849, and settled in the north part, on lot 114. Timothy Nobles removed from Urbana, Steuben Co., to the town of Burns, in 1833; three years later to Grove; and thence, in 1856, to his present residence in this town. Captain Elisha Mix was an early settler in the town, but in what year we are not advised. He came from Potter Co., Pa., and settled on lot 47, where he died in 1859. His step-son, George E. Adams, came with him, and still lives in the town. The first death in the town was that of John Bagley, in 1838. The first school was taught by Clarinda Kent, in 1839. The first store was kept by Samuel J. Peet, in 1844. The first saw mill was erected by John W. Post, in 1843.