The Town of New Albion was erected from Little Valley in 1830. The Town received
its name from Albion (Orleans County), past home of some at the early settlers.
The Town's main water sources are tributaries of the Conewango and Cattaraugus
Creek. The Town is hilly and occupies a portion of the "Dividing Ridge". From a
point on Tug Hill Road a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside can be
had, as well as a distant view of Lake Erie. The area was originally heavily
timbered. The soil of the Town was favorable for agricultural interests especially
The first settlers arrived in 1818. The first grist mill was constructed in 1836.
A few notes of interest:
1) In 1819, with the winter unseasonally mild, arriving settlers gathered leaves to fill their bed mattresses.
2 ) A Solomon Wright erected a sawmill in the vicinity of the hamlet of New Albion, next to which he built his residence. The "unique shape" of the home resulted in the neighbors calling it "Solomon's Temple ".
3) In 1871, the Town protested any appropriation to reimburse expenses incurred by the construction of the County buildings in Little Valley.
4 )A farm owned by Joseph Plumb originally embraced all the lands of the Village. Mr. Plumb had forever dedicated the land to temperance by inserting in the conveyance terms of which state that the title would be forfeited if intoxicating liquors were ever sold in the Village and the property would revert back to Mr. Plumb or his heirs. At one point, a property owner (Mr . Tubbs) began to sell liquor openly on his property. The dispute ended in Court of Appeals where title of Mr. Tubbs land was reverted back to Mr. Plumb. Mr. Plumb, being noble of mind, deeded the property back to the family of Mr. Tubbs, who had gotten himself in deep debt over the lawsuit.
5)The village has had a "sweeping" cyclone and 3 fires, with the worst fire in 1889.
The main highway of the Town was "Old Chautauqua Road". It is interesting to
learn that 3 taverns were built at various locations along this road (1818, 1820,
and "Guys Place" 1822). In 1851, the New York & Erie Railroad wa s completed
through the Town, opening a station at Cattaraugus .
With dairying as the main source of revenue, several cheese factories/creameries
sprang up throughout the Town. The Bigelow Creamery opened in 1867, followed by
Cattaraugus Cheese Factory (Robinson & Spore - 1870), W. J. Manley Factory, (1873), Eben Sibley's Creamery and Cheese Factory, and Lemuel Jenks' Cheese Factory. Naturally, with the production of cheese came the need for cheese boxes made by M&M.W. Cook (1876).
The hamlet of New Albion, locally known as Horth's Corners, during the 1870-
1890's consisted of 2 stores (i.e . Horth & Whitcomb), a hotel, a post office
( 1833 ), a cheese factory, a lumber manufacturing, a saw mill (Waite & Davis
1889), a pearl ash factory, a tannery (1845 ) and a church.
The Village of Cattaraugus, located on a hillside, was a station of the New York
& Erie Railroad. In 1830 a potash factory opened. A public meeting place,
"Darlings Hall", opened in 1875. In the 1870-1990's, the Village saw 5 churches,
3 stores, a hardware store, 2 carriage shops, an edged tool manufactory (Eyck Edge
Tool Company 1883 ), a clothier (1851 ), a school (1852), a tavern, post office
(1851 ), a bank (Cattaraugus Banking Company - 1869 ), 2 doctors, a weekly publication (Cattaraugus Gazette - 1877), 3 lawyers, a jewelry store, a drug store, 2 merchant tailoring shops, a telegraph/ telephone/express office, The Arizona Milling and Mining Company office (18 78 ), and 2 hotels. Manufacturing interests within the Village included the Cattaraugus Steam Flour and Saw Mill (1858) which included fork and hoe handles, cheese boxes, cooperage), the Cattaraugus Tannery (1857) later known as Moench Tannery, Cattaraugus Fruit Package Company, J. H. Ryder's Furniture Factory (1859), the Common Sense Milk Pan Factory' (Oaks & Calver 1873), the Cattaraugus Chair Factory, Ambrose Snyder's Furniture Factory, Ross' Carriage Works (1873), a sash and blind factory, a shingle mill, a tin and sheet iron manufactory, and the Waite sawmill (1865). The first public house (18 51) was later known as "Cattaraugus House".
Source: Cattaraugus County Book 1808-1995/96