(The following information is shared from "HISTORY OF ALLEGANY COUNTY,NY" - F..W.Beers & Co., NY; 1879)

    "INDEPENDENCE was formed from Alfred, March 16th, 1821.  Andover was set off January 28th, 1824, and a part of Willing November 19th, 1851.  The first town meeting was held April 10th, 1821, at the house of Luther Strong.  Thaddeus Baker, Esq., a justice of the peace, was present.  The first town officers were:  Supervisor, Luther Strong; town clerk, Joseph Clark; assessors, Simeon Adams, Luther Green and Nathaniel Covell; highway commissioners, Isaac Stanbro, Timothy Younglove and Samuel S. White; collector, Alfred Holmes; overseers of the poor, Thaddeus Baker and Shubael Spicer; constables, Alvin Holmes, Roswell Adams and Joseph Pixley;  school commissioners, William W. Reynolds, Isaiah W. Green and Amherst Kingsbury; school inspectors, Willett Larrabee, Edmund Perry and Amherst Kingsbury.

    The successive supervisors of the town have been as follows:  1822-26, 1847, Nathaniel Covell; 1827-29, John P. Livermore; 1830, 1832, 1833, Alvah Wood; 1831, Alexander Rice; 1834, 1839, Silas Crandall; 1835-6, 1840-1, 1848-9, 1853, 1848, Samuel S. White; 1837, Isiah W. Green; 1838, Gaylord C. Calvin; 1842-3, Hercules Darling; 1844, Franklin Forsyth; 1845-6, 1852, 1872-75, Morris S. Chase; 1854, Samuel Y. Schofield; 1857, Elisha B. Green; 1859-60, Anthony Barney; 1861, Daniel B. Harrigan; 1862-3, Benjamin F. Wood; 1864-5, A.M. Parker; 1866, I.D. Brown; 1867, E.J. Shepard; 1868-9, Walter Leonard; 1870-1, John C. Green; 1876-7, Morris S. Chase; 1878, Clark White.

    The following named persons have served as town clerk:  Thaddeus Baker, Isiah W. Green, Alvah Wood, Beriah Crandall, Almond Crandall, S.W. Green, Matthew Wilson, Hollis Gilbert, Samuel S. White, Timothy Stiles, William Jones, Dougald C. White, Clark White, Daniel B. Harrigan, Lorenzo D. Brown, William Swift, Marcus L. Butler, L.H. Bartlett, Valerius L. Forsyth, Alvin Kelsey, Samuel Beebe, Stephen Wildman, George W. Rose, Theodore A. Harrigan, Albertus Burr, A.S. Brown, Myron D. Hopper, M.F. Forsyth and Floyd Casey."

SETTLEMENT    "As early as 1798 the first settler penetrated the forest of what is now the town of Independence, and locating on the creek which afterwards bore his name built a house and a saw-mill, and made other improvements.  This man was John Cryder.  How long he remained a resident of the town is not definitely known; but he soon abandoned such improvements as he had made, and emigrated to some other part of the country.

    Oliver Babcock is said to have been the first permanent settler, locating on lot number 126, in the north part of the town, in the fall of 1818 or early in the following year.  He moved in from Alfred and remained in the town until about 1828.

    Probably the best remembered of the earlier settlers in the town were the Wilsons.  David Wilson was born in 1767, in the town of Shelburne, Franklin county, Mass., and in the fall of 1818 he set out, in company with his wife and five sons and two daughters, for Allegany county.  In March 1819, he arrived in the town of Independence and located on lot number 72, having stopped during the winter at Yates.  A man named Peterson, who had contemplated settling in the town and erected a cabin into which he never had moved, had thus provided a shelter for Mr. Wilson and his family until they could build a house for themselves.  Although this structure was in the north part of the town and their land was nearly in the center, it may well be imagined they esteemed its presence, even at such a distance, in the light of a good forturne.  David Wilson, Jr., settled on lot number 73 in 1818.  His son, R. C. Wilson, is now a resident on lot number 72 and Wilbur Wilson, another son, lives on the old homestead of his father.  David Wilson died in the town in 1840.  A son and daughter of Mr. Wilson, who had remained in Massachusetts, came on two years later but before their advent other settlers had arrived; among them the third in the town, John Teater, bringing with him his sons John and Peter, and his recently-married son-in-law, Samuel S. White.  Mr. Teater was of Dutch blood, and originally from Dutchess county, and it is said that, unlike the Dutch race in general, he possessed somewhat of a roving disposition.  After leaving Dutchess county, he stopped for a time on the east shore of Cayuga lake.  He next moved to Alfred, where he remained a year or two.  In April, 1819, he came to Independence, where he was made a local land agent.  He was enterprising, and ina the course of a few years he had taken for his own use four hundred acres of land in a body on the hills north of Cryder creek.  His son John settled within the limits of the present village of Whitesville, where he lived till his death.  Peter settled on the hills.  Borth these young men were famous hunters.  Samuel S. White was a native of Hopkinton, R.I., and was born in 1796.  He had previously removed to the town of Alfred with his two sisters.  When he had made some improvement he sent for his father's family.  After his marriage with Nancy Teater he came from Alfred to lot number 50, where Whitesville now is, at the time mentioned, and remained there until his death in 1860.  His four sons all live near the place of his settlement.  In connection with a reference to his wealth in after years, it has been said of him that his worldly possessions at the time he came consisted of an ax and two dollars and fifty cents cash.

    Stephen Boyce, a native of Richmond, N>H., came to Independence a little later, and took up and improved the southeast fourth of lot number 52.  Soon he went back, was married to a Miss Talman, and returned to build a log hut and remain in possession till 1824, when he sold out to Alvah Wood.

    William Hamilton moved in the same spring (1819), from Alfred, and settled in the north part of the town, on lot number 117.  Four or five years later he removed to West Union, Steuben county, and subsequently from there to Iowa.  During the summer, or early in the fall, Nathaniel Taggart located on lot number 8.

    In the spring of 1820 Luther Green, a native of the State of New York, who was born in 1796, about thirty miles below Albany, moved out from Madison county and settled where he now (1878) lives on lot number 116.  He sowed the first timothy seed in the town soon after his arrival.  He has since engaged in farming and lumbering, and his career has been a successful one.

    A man who will long be remembered in the town was Joseph Bledsoe (a son-in-law of John Teater), a Virginian by birth, who after serving in the war of 1812 removed to Amond at its close, having been a prisoner of war at Montreal at the time peace was declared.  In 1820 he came to Independence, and settled on lot number 81, north of the location of John Teater, whose daughter he had married in 1816.

    The first settler south of Cryder creek was Colonel William W. Reynolds, who was born in Hopkinton, R.I., in 1798, and removed with his father to Otsego county when a boy.  In the summer of 1820 he came to Independence where he took up land on lots numbers 17 and 28, and commenced a clearing.  In the fall he returned east, and the next spring brought his sister, Miss Sally Reynolds, to keep house for him.  Nathaniel Covell, who had settled at Whitesville not long before, gave them shelter under his roof until the 20th of April, when their own house was ready for occupancy.  The day before their arrival was one of the most inclement of the whole year, the snow having fallen to a depth of two feet, and then, the weather changing, a terrific thunder storm came on, completely drenching them.  To add to the unpleasantness of their situation, there was no road part of the way and they were obliged to make their way through the snow and slush as best they could.

    During the summer of 1820 Shubael Spicer, a native of Connecticut, who had removed from Otsego county to the town of Alfred in 1818, came out from there to Independence and located on lot number 64.  In December his brother, Seth Spicer, who was also born in Connecticut, moved from Plainfield, Otsego county, and settled on the same lot, taking an article for one hundred and three and a half acres, which he cleared and on which he lived till his retirement from active business in 1858.  His son, D. W. Spicer, who was born on the old homestead in 1826, removed to his present location in 1849, where he has sinced lived, and where his father died in 1876.

    Others who came in 1820 were Asa Clark, Nathan Stillman, Joseph Fulmer, John Halloway and Joseph Remington.  Clark was born in Cato, Cayuga county, in 1802, and moved in from Hornellsville, Steuben county, in March of the year mentioned.  He was a grandson of John Teater, and lived with the latter two years, and subsequently with Joseph Bledsoe, his step-father.  He worked out among the settlers till 1824, when he married and took up a portion of lot number 40.  He subsequently removed to Canisteo, Steuben county, and from there to Alfred.  Stillman, who was a native of Rhode Island, came in from Madison county and settled on lot number 103, a little after the arrival of Clark, and lived there till his death.  Fulmer was born in 1770, on ship-board, while his parents were crossing the Atlantic en route for the "New World."  They settled in Northampton county, Pa., where Joseph was reared.  In 1812 the family emigrated to Tompkins county, and from there, in the fall of 1820, Joseph came to Independence, and began to clear land which he had located on lot 111, in the valley which bears the family name.  Dduring the winter he put up a log-house, into which his son, William, who was born in Pennsylvanie, in 1800, moved three or four loads of goods.  In the following March the family moved in.  William Fulmer became a well know resident of the town, of which he was a resident for fifty-three years.  His father died in 1852.  Halloway took up land on lot number 107.  Remington was from Yates county.  He settled on lot number 104.

    Among those who came in 1821 was Asaph Goodridge, a native of Worcester county, Mass., who moved in from Canisteo, Steuben county, and settled on lot number 40, on Cryder creek, where his son Luther Goodridge now resides, and lived there until his death in 1854.  His son was born in Canisteo the year before his father's settlement in town.  John P. Livermore came in November of the same year and located on lot number 117.  He was born in Windham county, Vt., in 1798, and had lived in the counties of Oneida and Madison previous to his settlement in Independence.  He became prominent in town affairs, and besides occupying other official positions, held that of justice of the peace for twenty-four years.  He was a participant in the stirring scenes of the war of 1812, having , while a resident of Madison county, enlisted in the NY State militia and served till discharged.  He is now living (November 1878) fifty years after his advent in the town, with his step-son Mr. E.D.Potter.

    N.H. Fortner, a native of Tompkins county, moved into the town with his father, February 16th, 1821.  Twelve years later they removed to the town of Willing.

    May 16th Matthew Wilson, a native of Franklin county, Mass, settled on lot number 71, where he remained until 1870, where he removed to Hallsport.  He held the office of justice of the peace sixteen years, and was a lieutenant colonel in the State militia.  His son, Stephen, who came with him at the age three years, removed to Willing in 1853, and has since resided there.

    Abel Traik, a native of Rhode Island, came in the early part of the year from Yates county, and went back there after two or three years.

    Beriah Crandall, who was born in Herkimer county, August 5th, 1798, came to Independence from Schoharie county, on foot, with his pack upon his back, arriving in February, 1821.  He selected two hundred acres of land on lot number 81, and immediately began a clearing, in making which he was assisted greatly by the Wilsons, whose relative he was.  After clearing four acres he planted some corn and potatoes.  In the fall he put in two acres of wheat.  Further mention of Mr. Crandall will be made in connection with reference to the business interests of the town.

    In 1822 William Reynolds, Colonel Reynold's father, moved into the town, and was engaged in business with the latter, as the sequel will show.  In the spring of the same year Jesse and Philip Haseltine, natives of New Hampshire, came in from Yates county and settled on lot number 74.  They put up a rude log house; cut, logged and cleared three acres of second growth timber that had grown in an old windfall, performing all the labor without the aid of a team.  In the fall their father and other members of the family arrived.

    Gordon Stout also came in the spring of 1822, and located on lot number 128.  He died in April, 1865.  His son, William Stout, is a resident of Fulmer Valley.

    Caleb and Samuel H. Riggs settled on lot number 106 early in April.  They were brothers and natives of Rhode Island; but they came from Yates county.  Caleb was unmarried and boarded with his brother until he made a clearing and built a house; then returned to Yates county and married, and brought his wife home in 1824.  In 1853 he went back to Yates county, and remained there until his death, ten years later.  Another who came about the same time was William Briggs, a native of the same State, who moved in from the same county and settled on lot number 107.  He had been a soldier in the last war with England.  He died in 1866.  In May, 1823, Samuel Livermore, a native of Vermont, came in from Madison county, and settled on lot number 105.  He was a surveyor and for twenty years did much of the surveying in Independence and adjoining towns.  He has since lived in the town except two years spent in Hume,  and his large family live near him.  In July Edmund Livermore came from Brookfield, Madison county, with his father, and located in the north part of the town, where he has since resided with the exception of a few years in Madison county.  Others who came during the year were Ebenezer Richmond, David S. Briggs, Alvah Wood, Conrad Minges, Daniel Dexter, John Wheeler and Simeon Wilcox.  Richmond, a native of Oneida county, moved in during the month of January, from Steuben county, bringing in several cattle and sheep.  He had come the previous fall and located land and built a house.  Briggs, who was native of Dutchess county, moved in from Madison county and settled on the farm now occupied by his son, R.I.Briggs, in 1824, two years after he came.  Richmond and Briggs are both dead.  The latter died in September, 1861.

    Wood, a Vermonter, came from Canandaigua, and settled on lot number 52, February 28th.  Minges was a native of Pennsylvania.  He moved in April 15th, and settled on the Lynch farm, on lot number 114.  He came from Tompkins county.  Twelve years later he went back to Pennsylvania, and died there.  His son, Charles Minges, is well known in the town.  Dexter was a resident of the town only a few weeks.  He went back to Utica, but became a permanent settler in Independence in 1833.  Wheeler was a Welshman and had been a sailor.  He settled in the west part of the town.  In 1845 he went west, where he died.  Wilcox moved in in February.  His widow was living in the town of Willing a few years ago.

    Smith Dexter, sen,John Hill, Noel Jones, Rev. Nathaniel Hammond and Nathan Babcock were among the settlers in 1824.  Dexter was a native of Rhode Island.  He came in June, from Herkimer county and settled on lot number 89. Hill was from Pennsylvania.  He settled on lot number 64.  Jones was born near Troy, and settled on lot number 25, on Cryder creek.  He was accompanied by his son, Noel,Jr., who was born in Oneida county in 1811.  Both will be mentioned in connection with the advancement of the best interests of the town.  The old Jones homestead is now occupied by Adolphus Jones.  Noel, Jr., located on his present farm in 1860.  Rev. Mr. Hammond was born in Rhode Island, and was a hero of the struggle for independence.  He was a Baptist preacher, and labored for the good of his race till his death in 1851.  He located on lot 106.  Babcock, a native of Rhode Island, had lived in Monroe county.  From there he removed to lot number 90, bringing a yoke of oxen and a couple of cows, but, it is said, "not a shilling in money."  Calvin Hall was another who moved in during 1824.  He was born in Plymouth county, Mass., September 20th 1796.  He removed thence to Yates county, and from there to Independence, where he remained till 1838, when he removed to Hallsport.

    Prominent among those who made Independence their home in 1825 was Dr. A. Barney, who came in March from Herkimer county and located at Green's Corners, where he has since resided.  In the fall of the same year he bought of D.W. Green the property he owns.  He became prominent in town affairs.  Others who came during the year were Joseph Hull, David Robbins and Charles Chapin.  Hull was born in Connecticut, but came in from Herkimer county.  He settled on lot number 46.  He started several months before, but when he reached Brutus, in Cayuga county, his funds were exhausted and he was obliged to stop and earn more money; after whiche he hired a man to bring him the remainder of the journey, but had to borrow two dollars after his arrival to make up the sum he had promised to pay him.  Robbins was born in Connecticut.  He moved in from Tompkins county, accompanied by his sons David C. and John B., who are well known in the town.  In 1863 the elder Robbins moved over the State line into Pennyslvania, where he died.  Chapin settled on lot number 45.

    Ebenezer Parker located on lot number 87, in 1826.  He was born in Montpelier, VT, October 6th, 1781.  He had lived in Chautauqua and Yates counties and came from the latter county to Allegany.  He was accompanied by a large family, one of whom was L. H. Parker.  He died March 25th, 1860.  Many of his descendants live in the county.  The old homestead is now known as the Bloss farm.  L. H. Parker located on his present property in 1847.  Joseph Evans who was born in eastern New York January 7th, 1799, moved in from Steuben county and settled on lot number 15 during the same year.  He died January 28th, 1874.

    In 1827 Thomas Collver, from Yates county, settled on lot number 24.  Another well remembered settler in 1827 was Joseph Bennett.  He was born near Brattleboro, VT, and moved in from Toga county, Pa.  He located on lot number 31, and a few years later removed to Willing.  He subsequently went west.  His son, Dr. George H. Bennett, located in Whitesville for the practice of his profession in 1860.  Elijah Lewis, from Petersburgh, Rensselaer county, settled on lot number 93 the same year,  Archelaus Putnam, from Windsor county, VT, on lot number 52, and Alexander Rice, from Cortland county, on lot number 36.  Lewis died in 1855.  Putnam was born in Hillsboro county, N.H., June 10th, 1792.  He removed to the town of Willing after many years residence in Independence.  In 1828 Lewis B. Fitch, a native of Cortland county, NY, settled in the town and Nelson B. Coates, a native of Plainfield, Otsego county, was a prominent settler in 1829.  He located on lot number 48.  Daniel Cobb was a settler in 1828.

    In 1830 the population of the town was 877.  Settlement was constantly advancing.  In 1831 L. D. Brown, since well known in the affairs of the town, came to Independence.  The following year he took up his residence in Whitesville.  Among those who came in 1838 were Horace Wildman and Franklin Forsyth, both accompanied by their families.  At the time his father came, Tolbert Wildman was only four months old.  The family became well known in the town.  Frances, a daughter of Franklin Forsyth, became the wife of Clinton Richardson.  William Cobb, a native of Brattleboro, VT, also came to Independence in 1833, and settled at Spring Mills.  He has amassed a fortune, and was for one term a representative of his district in the Assembly.  In 1834, Daniel Dexter, who was born in Herkimer county, in 1806, came in from Utica and bought his present farm.  In 1835 the population of the town had advanced to 1,189.  Among those who came in 1837 were Dorus Burr and Morris S. Chase.  Burr, who was born in Jefferson county, in 1808, had lived in Tompkins county.  He came to Andover in 1830, and from there to Independence, locating at Whitesville.  Chase was born in Yates county in 1822.  He was accompanied to Independence by this father, John B. Chase, and his family.  The latter was a Baptist preacher.  Morris S. Chase became prominent in public affairs.  The population was 1,440 in 1840.  Horace Cobb, who died in 1865, settled at Spring Mills in 1840 or 1841.  D. M. Clark, a native of Madison county, was a prominent settler in 1841.  He located at Green's Corners and engaged in trade.  Since 1846 he has been engaged in the manufacture of Cheese.  Dr. J. G. Horton settled in Whitesville in 1843, and Charles Wildman in 1844.  In 1845 the population of the town was 1,679; in 1850, 1,701; in 1855, 1,136; in 1860, 1,199; in 1865, 1,126; in 1870, 1,175; in 1875, 1,217."