Victor History 

History of Ontario Co, NY & its People, Pub 1911, Vol. 1   Pgs. 484 - 498

Kindly transcribed by Donna Walker Judge



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Scene of the Only Battle between Armed Forces Ever Fought in What Is Now Ontario County - Era of the White Man - The Township Bought of Phelps and Gorham for Twenty Cents an Acre -The Purchasers Were BOUGHTONS from Massachusetts - First Settlement and Subsequent Development - By George SIMONDS. 

When the Marquis DENONVILLE, then Governor of New France, set out in the summer of 1687 to invade the Seneca country, his army, debarking at Irondequoit bay, marched down into what is now the heart of the town of Victor, and there, very nearly where the village of Victor is located, first encountered, at dear cost of blood, the Nun-da-wa-o-no, as the Keepers of the Western Door of the Iroquois “long house” called themselves. This was the only encounter between hostile armies that ever occurred on the territory now embraced in the county of Ontario. South of the battlefield, on Boughton hill, was the Indian capital of Gannagaro, and on the following day, July 14, this “Babylon of the Senecas,” as the Abbe DE BELMONT called it, was burned by order of the French commander, as was also the smaller settlement known as Gannogarae, located on what is now the BEALS farm about one mile and a half south of Boughton hill. At Gannagaro and Gannogarae were located the two Jesuit missions of “St. James” and “St. Michaels,” which had been the scene of the self-sacrificing labors of Father FREMIN and his associates since about the year 1667. Following the destruction wrought by DENONVILLE, these and other Seneca towns in the neighborhood were abandoned, and the red denizens of the forest moved to points further east.

The following sketch of the Era of the White Man in Victor was prepared by Mr. George SIMONDS for a town celebration several years ago, and, is here published by permission of the author:

The White Man’s Era in the town of Victor began in peace with no stains of blood upon its record and no strife between the new comers and the dusky natives of the soil. The land, the birth-right of the Indian, was obtained by honorable means, and the red man, quietly yielding to the inevitable, slowly made way for the oncoming march of civilization.

Among the large number of people who had gathered at Geneva in 1788 in anticipation of the opening of the Genesee country for settlement, were Jared BOUGHTON and his brother, Enos, of Stockbridge, Massachusetts, the latter of whom accepted an appointment as secretary to William WALKER, the agent of the Phelps and Gorham company. Enos purchased township eleven, fourth range, in the new tract, which is now the town of Victor, for twenty cents an acre. This purchase was made for Hezekiah BOUGHTON, the father of Jared and Enos, and his family, of Stockbridge, Massachusetts, who were desirous of leaving New England for a home in the wilderness of Western New York. In the spring of 1789, Jared and Enos BOUGHTON and Horatio JONES, a brother-in-law, came to Schenectady in wagons and from there by boat on the Mohawk river, Wood creek, Oneida lake, Seneca river, and Canandaigua outlet to within six miles of Canandaigua, to which village they hired their goods drawn by an ox team. Following the Indian trail they came to the extreme southern part of this town, where they built a log cabin by a small brook, on land now owned by Richard BARRY.  The first housekeeping in the town was done by these three men alone in the wilderness, living in true pioneer style and depending entirely upon themselves for everything. They roamed over the township surveying the land and laying it out into farms preparatory to selling what they did not desire for themselves.

Jacob LOBDELL, a young man from Stockbridge destined to become one of the most prominent men of the future town, came with Hezekiah BOUGHTON, Jr., to the settlement in June, with fourteen head of cattle, including two yokes of oxen, with which they broke up the soil and prepared it for crops. They sowed buckwheat and planted potatoes, and in the fall sowed some wheat. The buckwheat was a good crop but the potatoes were a failure. As winter approached the whole party, with the exception of LOBDELL, returned to Massachusetts. LODBELL, who was left in charge of the cattle, boarded with a family named ROSE who lived in Bloomfield, three miles south of the BOUGHTON cabin, to which he returned each day to look after the stock.

In February, 1790, Jared BOUGHTON and his family, consisting of his wife and two children, Sellick, aged two years, and Melania, who was only six months old, and Seymour BOUGHTON, a younger brother of Jared, accompanied by the family of Colonel Seth REED, who was at Geneva, bade goodbye to their friends and neighbors and left Stockbridge in a sleigh for their new home. It was an unfavorable time of year for traveling, as the roads were in a horrible condition and the accommodations along the route were the worst possible. Creeks and rivers were swollen and very dangerous in crossing, and on one occasion the party were obliged to camp out doors under a hemlock tree. On their arrival at Geneva they were hospitably entertained by Colonel REED, who gave them a warm welcome. Leaving Colonel REED’s they pushed on and arrived at the cabin on March 7th, 1790, where they remained only a short time, as Mr. BOUGHTON built a log house on land now owned by W. B. OSBORNE, near his present residence in Victor village. Preparations were immediately made to form a permanent home and prepare the way for their future friends and neighbors, who were already coming to settle the town and “make the wilderness to bud and blossom like the rose.”

Mr. BOUGHTON took the buckwheat raised the year before on horseback to GANSON’s mill at Avon, where it was ground, and when the wheat was ready to harvest it was cut with a sickle, threshed with a flail, and cleaned with a rude fan, after which it was drawn with a double ox team to ALLEN’s mill at Genesee Falls.

In the summer and fall of 1790 there came to the new town Enos BOUGHTON and family, Hezekiah BOUGHTON and his daughter, Theodosia, and his brothers, Eleazer, Mathew, Seymour, and Nathan; also their relatives, David, Deforest, and Abram BOUGHTON. This is a large number of people from one family, and their descendants are scattered all over this town and are among our most worthy citizens. Nicholas SMITH, a son-in-law of Hezekiah BOUGHTON, built a cabin at the foot of the hill, on land now owned by The Locke Insulator Company, near the New York Central railroad station, while another son-in-law, Joshua KETCHAM, located in the southwestern part of the town. Israel M. BLOOD came by boat up Mud creek, and there came about the same time Abijah WILLIAMS, whose daughter married Asahel MOORE. These were the parents of James and R. B. MOORE. Ezekial SCUDDER commenced a small settlement at East Victor, which was called Scudderville. Here he built a mill and slept in the trees to escape the wolves. Asa HECOX, who also came in 1790, settled on land now owned by William TURNER. He hollowed out a stump for a mill and pounded corn with a large stone attached to a well sweep.

In the fall of 1790, it became necessary to obtain salt and Jared and Seymour BOUGHTON and John BARNES went to Palmyra and from there by boat to Salt point, near the present city of Syracuse, where they secured a load of salt, which they boated to Palmyra and from there they drew it to this town with ox teams.

It has been claimed that Frederick BOUGHTON, a son of Jared, who was born on June 1st, 1791, was the first white child born in the town, but I have been informed by Mrs. C. F. DICKINSON, a granddaughter of Enos BOUGHTON, that her aunt, Clarissa BOUGHTON, a daughter of Enos BOUGHTON, was born May 22nd, 1791. These dates are also given in the history of the BOUGHTON family recently published.

The BOUGHTON’s reserving a quarter of the township, sold the remainder, and Jared moved onto Boughton hill in 1792, and built a log house under an oak tree, on land now owned by Charles GREEN. His father and brother located near him, and it seems probable that they intended to start a village about the four corners on Boughton hill, for they set apart land for a cemetery and for a school-house, and a square, which has since been enclosed, came out to the corner. Just east of these corners, Hezekiah BOUGHTON built the first framed house in town, in 1792, and opened it as a hotel. But the village did not grow, and as the site of the present village of Victor was on the road from Canandaigua to Rochester, it soon became the trading center of the town. Hezekiah BOUGHTON died in 1798, and Jared and Enos, who had become financially embarrassed, moved to North Carolina in 1799 and engaged in the lumbering business. Enos remained there only a short time, then moving to Lockport, N.Y.  He was a man of fine personal appearance and bearing. His granddaughter, Mrs. C. F. DICKINSON, was long a resident of this town. Jared BOUGHTON returned to Victor in 1809 and repurchased the old homestead and lived there for many years, afterward moving to East Bloomfield, where he died in 1852, Mrs. BOUGHTON having died at the same place in 1849. Mr. BOUGHTON was a man of more than ordinary ability and of personally fine character. He was a veritable gentleman of the old school and his wife was a worthy helpmeet to him. Their remains rest in the Boughton hill cemetery amid the scenes they loved so well.

Jacob LOBDELL fairly shared with the BOUGHTON's the honors of the first settlement of the town. He purchased of them one hundred acres of land which is now owned by Horace CALKINS. He married Hannah, a daughter of Levi BOUGHTON, thus more closely connecting the two families. Levi B. LOBDELL and Jacob L. LOBDELL, Mrs. RUFUS and Mrs. Abram HUMPHREY (Huldah), who were their children, were life-long residents of this place, and their grandson, Burton H. LODBELL, still lives here. Mr. LOBDELL was a very enterprising and prominent citizen, a man of generous impulses and kindness of heart. Everybody’s friend and one whom people called on for counsel and advice. He was the first supervisor of the town, and was often called on to fill positions of honor and trust. Jacob died in 1848, at the advanced age of seventy-eight years.

The BRACES - Reuben, Herman, John, Joseph, and Elisha - bought a tract of land two miles square in the northeast part of the town, in 1793, which they afterward traded for land in the southeastern part, on what has since been known as Brace street, having received its name from that family. This change of location was made to bring them nearer the trading center, which was East Bloomfield. Thomas BRACE, who died here recently, was a grandson of Elisha BRACE. On the farm now owned by Dennis MAHANY was an old fashioned brick oven to which the people came to bake from miles around. Mrs. Elisha BRACE was in the habit of coming here on horseback, bringing with her a kneading trough and two small children, which she could not leave at home. On one occasion, as she was returning home, she was chased by wolves and her baking had to go, but she arrived home safely with her children. This is only one of many instances of inconvenience, privation, and trouble endured by the pioneer women of our town.

Ezra WILMARTH, who was a prominent man in the early settlement, came here in 1796 and located in the southwestern part of the town, afterward moving to Boughton hill, where he built the brick house now owned by Herman GREENE, which he opened as a hotel in 1816. His old sign, weather beaten and worn by age, is in the possession of Mr. GREENE.

Among the early comers in the southwestern part of the town were Jonathan CULVER, Roswell MURRAY, Abijah COVILL, Elston HUNT, Samuel, Stephen, and Eleazar ELLIS. A worthy representative of the ELLIS family, Bolivar ELLIS, a grandson of Samuel ELLIS, has been a life-long resident of the town. He has been justice of the peace, associate county judge, county clerk, and supervisor.

James M. CAMPBELL and Increase CARPENTER belonged to the same neighborhood. The latter came from Schenectady county in the spring of 1811 with one wagon and one sleigh, and an extra horse, which was ridden by his son, Platt, who was only nine years old. If the sleighing was good, the extra horse was hitched ahead of the team with the wagon. If the wheeling was good, he was attached to the sleigh. Platt belonged to a rifle company which trained once a year on the ROOT farm, afterward owned for many years by A. L. COVILL, and now in possession of his grandson, James COVILL.

Peter PERRY lived in a log house near Luman P. MILLER’s farm. Captain PERRY was a soldier of the War of 1812, and while he was away from home the women of the family did the work on the farm.

Jeremiah RICHARDSON, who was a Montgomery county man, came here in 1802 and purchased a farm at four dollars per acre in the north part of the town, which he cleared up and upon which he built a log house. Here his son,  Silas was born, and here he died at an advanced age. Mr. RICHARDSON delighted to relate reminiscences of old times and was well posted on town history. Isaac MARSH also lived in the northern part of the town. He was a prominent man and was a member of the Legislature. Neighbors of Mr. RICHARDSON and Mr. MARSH were James UPTON, the father of  whose granddaughter was Mrs. Walter BOUGHTON, John LANE and John LADD, whose Josiah UPTON.   Jabez HART, grandson, John M. LADD, is a resident of this village.

James BARNHART, Peter SALE, and John CLINE came from the Mohawk country to link their fortunes with the people of this place. Mr. CLINE purchased five hundred acres of land, three hundred of which are now owned by his descendants. Cornelius CONOVER bought land in the western part of the town. He afterward moved to Mud creek, where his children grew to manhood and womanhood and have been among our most industrious and highly respected citizens.

Joseph ROWLEY, Simeon PARKS, Asahel LUSK, Gregory HILL, and Joseph and Barzella WOODSTON were pioneers in the western part of the town, and their descendants still own the land which was theirs and are among our most prosperous people. Gregory HILL, bought the first fifty acres of land which he owned and paid for it in chopping. He afterward owned four or five hundred acres, all in one parcel.

Samuel and Joseph RAWSON came here in an early day and the former purchased a farm about half a mile southwest of this village. He cleared up the land and commenced farming in earnest. He was a man of earnest, upright character, and was one of the leading citizens of the place, being a justice of the peace for many years and also an associate county judge. Mr. RAWSON died upon has farm in 1874. His son, A. P. RAWSON, also owned and lived on this farm. Colonel Lanson DEWEY was a prominent man of this town. He came here about 1825 and settled in east Victor. He was supervisor for many years and was also member of Assembly.

Rufus DRYER came to Victor in 1792 and after remaining here a few years he went to North Carolina with the BOUGHTONs. He returned in 1807 and bought of Eleazar BOUGHTON a hotel, which stood on the site of Mrs. Ann BALL’s residence, now the Universalist parsonage. This hotel, which was the first in the village, was a double log house and was built by James HAWLEY. Mr. DRYER made a contract with Seth BERRY to build the Victor hotel for a bushel of wheat per day. Wheat was then worth six shillings per bushel. Before the building was completed, the price had advanced to three dollars per bushel, but Mr. DRYER delivered the wheat as he agreed. This hotel was opened for business on Christmas day, 1819. Mr. DRYER was a very active business man. He and N. O. DICKINSON erected a grist mill on the creek, near the POWELL cider mill, and in 1812 drew flour to Buffalo for the use of the army located there. They also sent flour to Albany in large covered wagons, and they bought cattle and drove them to the Philadelphia market. Mr. DRYER died in 1820. The hotel was kept in the possession of the family and was run by Mrs. DRYER and afterward by her sons, and it was sold to Harvey PECK in 1848. William C., Truman R., and George W. DRYER were sons of Rufus DRYER. William C. DRYER, was postmaster and supervisor of the town, was twice appointed deputy marshal, and was elected presidential elector on the SEYMOUR ticket of 1868 and on the TILDEN ticket in 1876. Truman DRYER, who was very quiet and retired in his manner and a man very highly respected, died here several years ago.

Enos, Samuel, and James GILLIS came to town soon after the beginning of the century and erected a tannery and shoe factory on land now owned by L. G. LOOMIS in the rear of his residence. The descendants of this family are well known residents of the northern part of the town.

Feeling the need of a meeting-house, a subscription paper was circulated and the necessary funds were raised. There was some strife over the location of the building. There was a strong feeling in favor of Boughton hill and a determined effort was made for the ROOT farm, now owned by James COVILL, and the lumber was drawn to this site, but other influences were brought to bear and the site finally chosen was the hill directly north of Main street on land now owned by Milo F. WEBSTER and Mrs. William MAY. This meeting-house was erected in 1805 and was a plain framed building with a steeple. Abijah WILLIAMS and Nathan LOUGHBOROUGH were the principal carpenters. It faced the west, and the interior of the building was of the old style church architecture, with high square pews, with a door in one end and seats on the three sides. The pulpit, high above the pews, was in the east end. A gallery occupied three sides of the building, while above the gallery and opposite the pulpit was a large pew for colored people. It is hardly necessary to say that this pew was scarcely ever occupied, although the writer has been informed by one who attended this church when a boy that he recollects a lady showing her colored servant to this pew. This was decidedly a public building. Here the people of the town worshiped and here they met for town meetings and other business, and it was known as the Proprietors’ meeting-house. The subscribers to the fund which paid for the building owned the pews and could sell or dispose of them if they wished.

In 1812, the new town was set off from Bloomfield and named after Claudius Victor BOUGHTON, a son of Hezekiah BOUGHTON, Jr.  He was a man of considerable importance, having distinguished himself as a bearer of dispatches in the war then waging, and for which the Legislature of the State presented him a sword. The first town meeting to elect officers was held in the Proprietors’ meeting house, on April 6, 1813. The following is the list of officers elected: Supervisor, Jacob LODBELL; town clerk, Eleazar BOUGHTON; assessors, Nathaniel BOUGHTON, Ezra WILMARTH, Sellick BOUGHTON: commissioners of highways, Ezekiel SCUDDER, Elisha WILLIAMS, Joseph BRACE; overseers of the poor, James UPTON, Rufus DRYER; constable and collector, Solomon GRISWOLD; pound master, Joseph PERKINS. Fence viewers and path masters were also elected. The pound was on the farm of Joseph PERKINS, now owned by John M. LADD.

The first road laid out in town is that which crosses Boughton hill from east to west, about one mile from this village. Main street was originally a few rods north of its present location, along the foot of the hill. There was a deep gully where the creek crosses the present street, and as the stages went through it they could not be seen from the steps of the Victor hotel. There was as much public travel, ten or a dozen stages a day passing through here, besides many private carriages. School street was probably the poorest in the village. It ran through a swamp and the road was made by laying logs in the mud.

The summer of 1816 was an extremely cold season, crops were a failure, and the people suffered intensely for the want of grain. Asa HECOX found upon examination that he would not have enough to supply his family, and he afterward said that a kind Providence sent them all the fever and ague and their grain proved sufficient. Ezra WILMARTH was also short of grain and he went to a mill on Mud creek, near LAPHAM’s for meal. He was asked by the miller, who was a Quaker, if he owned a horse. He replied that he did. When asked if he had money, the reply was again in the affirmative. The miller then said that he must go to Seneca Falls for his meal, as his neighbors who had neither horses nor money wanted all that he had. Not being able to procure meal at any nearer place, Mr. WILMARTH went to Seneca Falls.

Captain Abner HAWLEY, who owned most of the land in and about this village, lived in a log house which occupied land in the rear of the store and residence of William GALLUP.

William BUSHNELL was the most prominent merchant in the early days. He was a man of considerable means and owned a large amount of real estate. His store was where the Universalist church now stands and his residence was adjoining the store. Nathan JENKS was admitted as partner by Mr. BUSHNELL and afterward succeeded to the business. Mrs. D. H. OSBORNE was a daughter of Mr. BUSHNELL. Thomas EMBRY came to Victor in 1823 and entered the employ of Bushnell & Jenks, and became a partner with Mr. JENKS after Mr. BUSHELL’s retirement in 1828. This firm dissolved partnership in 1830, and Mr. EMBRY entered business for himself in a building adjoining the bank block, in which Morris BOUGHTON had been doing business and had failed. In 1835, Mr. EMBRY erected the store formerly occupied by William Gallup & Son and which was destroyed by fire in 1893. He continued business there till 1839 and then sold out to A. P. DICKINSON, and bought a farm upon which he lived for many years. Mr. DICKINSON sold to M. H. Decker & Co. A few years later William GALLUP bought an interest in the business, which has since been conducted under the firm name of and William Gallup & Co., and William Gallup & Son, and now by William B. GALLUP. The post office was located for years in the old Gallup store and William GALLUP was postmaster.

Mr. JENKS moved the Bushnell store to the site now occupied by the Osburn meat market, and built the stone store occupied by A. Simonds’ Sons in 1834. The work was done by David OSBORNE, the father of Samuel and D. Henry OSBORNE, the latter of whom was at one time a clerk in this store. Albert SIMONDS came from Utica to Victor by stage, in September, 1832, and entered the employ of Nathan JENKS, of whom he purchased the business, which he conducted with various partners, among whom were William P. HAWKINS, James BOUGHTON, Melancton LEWIS, Melancton LEWIS, Jr., James WALLING, Gilbert TURNER, and his sons, A. B. and Henry SIMONDS. In 1885, he retired permanently and was succeeded by his sons, George and C. Lewis SIMONDS. Mr. SIMONDS’s business life thus lasted over fifty years in one place and his reputation was one of unsullied purity of character. The Bushnell store, after it was vacated by Mr. JENKS, was sold to Giles ARNOLD, who was a tailor, and it was occupied for a long time by James WALLING, who sold it to Thomas HENAHAN to make way for his new block. Stephen COLLYER was the first wagon maker in town and David HEATH was employed in the same business. William T. ROUP was the first harness maker and Colonel Sheldon WALLING was in the same line, while in a later day A. L. PEET and Stephen JACOBS were competitors.

Where the town hall now is once stood a small furnace building put up by Hiram SEYMOUR. In a few years this was replaced by a larger building, which was erected by Colonel Melancton LEWIS and Albert SIMONDS. Business was carried on here by the firm of Moul, Brown, & Co., which consisted of Charles MOUL, BROWN, and SIMONDS & LEWIS. In front of the furnace was a stone blacksmith shop built by Urias DECKER, who, with his partner, Colonel William SEAVEY, carried on blacksmithing. Colonel SEAVEY, who won his title in the militia, afterward moved his blacksmith shop to the west end of the village. The Colonel was a very decided man. He was an abolitionist and a strong temperance man, and had the courage of his convictions. Mr. DECKER afterward carried on the blacksmith business for a long time in the shop occupied by A. S. ELLIS. A brick building on the north side of Main street on the site of Pimm’s barber shop was built by a tailor whose name was George PREVOST. He carried on his business here for some time. George N. WEST purchased the building and was employed in the same line of business. The sign, G. N. West, Tailor, could be seen on the west side of the building until it was burned in 1898. William BOLTWOOD carried on the shoe business here and he was also postmaster and the post office was in this building.

The first school-house in the village was situated on the west side of School street, on land now owned by the The Victor Preserving Company, and the first teacher was Melancton LEWIS, who came from Massachusetts and became one of the most prominent men of the town.

Ebenezer BEMENT built the house formerly occupied by William GALLUP, and he sold it to Dr. Thomas BEACH, who employed Jeremiah HAWKINS, to prepare it for use as a hotel, and it was long known as the Beach tavern, the leading hotel of the place. This house stood directly east of the Gallup store and was burned in 1893. Dr. BEACH was one of the most noted men of the town. He was a remarkable man in many ways. His reputation as a physician was very extended and his services were required over a large territory. Speaking of Jeremiah HAWKINS, he came here early and engaged in business as a carpenter, in which he was a natural adept. He came to town with nothing and amassed a very large property. When the railroad was building, he bought some stock and he kept on buying more, until, with the increase and his purchases, it amounted to over seventy thousand dollars.

Orin MILLER and Jonas M. WHEELER came here from Oneida county in a sleigh, in March, 1819, and bought a saw mill which stood near the Powell cider mill. They gave no money for their mill, but traded truck. Among other things were several boxes of shoes, which Mr. MILLER received as part payment for his place in Oneida county. There were in this vicinity within almost a stone’s throw a carding mill, a grist mill, a saw mill, and a distillery. The distilleries were very numerous, there being fourteen of them in the town, probably not all at one time. Whiskey, however, was so plenty that it was used as a medium of exchange, money being very scarce. It was customary for farmers to have their grain distilled and use the whiskey in the place of money. Orrin MILLER purchased a farm near his mill and lived there until his death in 1872. His son, Luman P. MILLER, lived there his entire life and the property now belongs to his son, Charles MILLER.

The first Fourth of July celebration took place in 1826. A four-horse team was sent to Canandaigua for a twelve-pound cannon and forty or fifty horsemen rode out to meet the gun and escort it into town. At Hathaway’s Corners, where there was a hotel, the cavalcade stopped and caught a woodchuck and put it in the gun, which was then fired. Resuming their march, the party came into town and placed the cannon on the brow of the hill north of Main street and west of the meeting-house. The public exercises were held in the meeting-house, after which a line of march was formed and the whole company proceeded to Jabez FELT’s tavern, at the west end of Main street. Opposite the tavern, in the open field, refreshments were served under green booths prepared for the occasion.


Victor Churches

Victor has been noted for its fine churches and its citizens have been a church going people. The first religious society was the Congregational, organized by the Rev. Reuben PARMELE in 1799, under the name of the North Congregational Society of Bloomfield. Mr. PARMELE was installed on February 14, 1799. The sacrament of the Lord’s supper was first administered on April 17th the same year. This society used the Proprietors’ meeting-house until 1833, when they erected a building of their own, which has since been enlarged and improved. The parsonage was built in 1868. The society has been changed to Presbyterian, and it is now known as the First Presbyterian Church in Victor.

The first Methodist preacher was the Rev. Joseph JEWEL, who came here in 1805. The Rev. Amos JENKS and the Rev. James KELSEY came the next year. The first Methodist Episcopal society was formed in 1807 by Rev. Samuel TALBOT and Rev. Joseph SCULL. The first quarterly meeting was held in a barn now owned by E. E. LOVEJOY, and services were held for several years in a school-house at the forks of the road east of this village. Their first church was begun in 1821, but was not finished until a few years later. The present church was erected in 1869 and the parsonage in 1875.

The first Universalist minister who preached here was the Rev. Nathaniel STACY. He was followed by William I. REESE in 1825. The society was organized in 1834 and among its first members were Ezra WILMARTH, Jeremiah RICHARDSON, Elisha PECK, Caroline M. DRYER, Orin MILLER, Henry BROWN, William C. DRYER, John BRACE, Truman R. DRYER, and John LADD. The Rev. Stephen MILES was the first minister after the organization of the society. They also used the Proprietors’ meeting-house, finally buying out the owners and securing the control of the property. The present church was erected in 1856.

Two Roman Catholic priests held services here about the year 1850. The first mass was celebrated in the school-house and a little later in a building which stood adjoining the PIMM barber shop on the east. Father CASEY came here in 1852 and commenced the erection of a church on land purchased of Mrs. Rachel BALL. Services were held in the Proprietors’ meeting-house and afterward in the Universalist church, their own building not having been completed at this time. Father HUGHES had charge of the church for a period of twenty-one years.

An Episcopal mission was established here in 1871 and a chapel, was built the next year. No services are held in the chapel at the present time.

For many years the leading physicians of this town ere Dr. William BALL and his brother, Dr. Charles BALL, who practiced their profession together and had a large and widely extended practice. After the death of Dr. William BALL, Dr. James F. DRAPER, who was connected with the BALL family, came here in 1869 and formed a partnership with Dr. Charles BALL and they enjoyed a lucrative practice, which was continued by Dr. DRAPER after Dr. BALL’s death. Dr. J. W. PALMER was a contemporary of the BALLS and was a widely read man both in his profession and outside of it. The Doctor married a sister of D. HENRY and Samuel OSBORNE.

The succession of Supervisors has been as follows: Jacob LOBDELL, 1813-14; Andrew COLTON, 1815; Jacob LODBELL, 1816-18; Jared BOUGHTON 1819-20; Jacob LODBELL, 1821; Eleazar BOUGHTON, 1822-23; Samuel RAWSON, 1824; Jacob LOBDELL, 1825; Samuel RAWSON, 1826-28; Nathan JENKS, 1829-30; Orin MILLER, 1831-33; Henry PARDEE, 1834-35; Samuel RAWSON, 1836; Jacob LOBDELL, 1837; Samuel RAWSON, 1838; Azariah BICKFORD, 1839; Henry PARDEE, 1840; Joseph RAWSON, 1841; Thomas EMBRY, 1842; Henry PARDEE, 1843; Thomas EMBRY, 1844; Lanson DEWEY, 1845; William C. DRYER, 1846-48; Peter S. BONESTEEL, 1849; William BALL, 1850; Lanson DEWEY, 1851; Levi B. LOBDELL, 1852-53; William S. CLARKE, 1854-56; Josiah UPTON, 1857-58; Lanson DEWEY, 1859-67; William C. DRYER, 1868; James WALLING, 1869-71; William PECK, 1872; James WALLING, 1873-77; Gilbert TURNER, 1878-79; Bolivar ELLIS, 1880-82; Marvin A. WILBUR, 1883-86; Stephen VAN VOORHIS, 1887; John COLMEY, 1888-89; William B. OSBORNE, 1890-91; Willis D. NEWTON, 1892-93; James HOUSTON, 1894-95; Marvin A. WILBUR, 1896-97; Willis D. NEWTON, 1898-1901; George VAN VOORHIS, 1902-1905; William B. CLAPPER, 1906-09; John W. LAUDER, 1910-11.

The history of all rural communities is much alike. The so-called great events seldom happen in them. Life glides along like the stream of a quiet river, and so it has been with Victor. The period succeeding its early settlement was one of growth and development and accretion. True to the character established by its founders, the town has ever been ready to assist in every good work, and it has the reputation of being one of the most progressive and enlightened communities in the State.

Village of Victor

The village of Victor was incorporated under the general village act on December 8, 1879. According to the census of 1910, it has a population of eight hundred and eighty-one. It is a thriving and progressive community, has excellent schools, four churches, a municipal water supply system, electric street lighting, a newspaper, a bank, and a number of up-to-date mercantile establishments. Victor is also the center of prosperous manufacturing interests, its leading enterprises in this line being the Locke Insulator Company and the Victor Preserving Company, each of which gives employment to two hundred persons. Its advantage of location, being on the New York Central and Lehigh Valley railroads, and also a principal station on the Rochester and Eastern electric road, presages further growth along this line. The village school occupies a handsome brick building which was erected in 1883 and has just now been greatly enlarged and improved. It became a high school in December, 1891. The village newspaper, the Victor Herald, was established in 1880, and is now conducted by Carl D. SMITH. The village also has a well equipped fire department and a number of volunteer organizations devoted to civic and literary development.

The hamlet of Fishers, located in the northwestern part of the town, on the line of the New York Central railroad, is a prosperous little business community and affords an outlet for the products of an exceptionally rich farming country.


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