Orleans County History

Orleans County, was taken from Genesee in 1824. It is 24 miles long E. and W., and 18 miles broad N. and S. It is centrally distant from Albany 257, and from New York 302 miles. The summit of the mountain ridge extends across the county at an elevation of about 340 feet above Lake Ontario. Parallel with this, on the alluvial way, runs the ridge road. With these exceptions, the face of the country 15 generally level. The soil, mostly clay and argillaceous loam, is highly fertile. Grain is raised in considerable quantities. The Erie canal passes centrally through the county. The whole county was included in the grant to Massachusetts. The towns of Barre, Carlton, Gaines, Ridgeway, Shelby, and Yates belonged to the Holland Land Company; while Murray, Clarendon, and Kendall belonged to the Pulteney estate. The county was chiefly settled by New Englanders, and is divided into 9 towns.

(Historical Collections of the State of New York, Past and Present, John Barber, Clark Albien & Co., 1851)