In 1886, Jenks and Ross built a creamery or cheese factory at East Leon. At one time, it was a large plant that received milk from more than 1,000 cows. The same year, Hunt and Caneen erected a two-story building, 30x120, on East Road at Leon Center. It was known as the Jenks and Ross No. 2 factory.
One evening, in the fall of 1895, a group of Leon people met in the Albert Ackler Cheese Factory on Wells HIll to discuss organizing a Grange. It was decided to call Deputy E. C. Ferguson from Conewango for the purpose. Mr. Ferguson met with these people October 7, 1895 in the Leon Hotel, and from the twenty-two charter members, the following members were elected as its officers: -Worthy Master - Hiram Crofoot -Overseer - Harrison Franklin -Lecturer - Mrs. M.G. Peckham -Assistant Steward - Mark Gorsline -Gate Keeper - Aras Wood
Article from the Dunkirk Observer on June 9, 2011:
LEON - Jodi Oakes, a member of the Leon Historical Social, dedicated the 100-year monument on Memorial Day, May 30.
A Soldiers Monument was dedicated May 30, 1911. It consists of seven pieces of granite, a base 7-feet square, surmounted by a full-size sculptured soldier in honor of soldiers of the Civil War. It is 25-feet tall. Purchased from Frank Forness of Salamanca, it cost about $2,000. Captain Fancher Post 310, G.A.R., Women Relief Corps 156, Senator Albert T Fancher, and friends provided the funds.
The Plumb brothers, Joseph (1791-1870) and Alvin ( 1802-1877) were active abolitionists. Brother Ralph (1795-1865) may also have been an abolitionist However, at this time we do not have the documentation to make that claim.
On February 10th, 1909 Thomas Jefferson Saunders, a well-known barber in Franklinville, passed away in his home on Cherry Street. He was survived by his wife Nancy and a brother Aaron who lived in Detroit. He was predeceased by his adopted son Charlie.
Tom, as he was known by his friends and customers, was born to a slave couple in Tennessee in 1838. The slave owner, whose name was Rainey, decided that slavery was wrong and took the family to Indiana. There he freed them and helped them get to Canada.
General Joseph McCluer was one of the first pioneers in what we know today as Cattaraugus County, New York. Born in May 1775, he was christened on 10 Sep 1775 in Greenwich, Hampshire County, Massachusetts. He was educated as a doctor, but decided to become an agent and surveyor for the Holland Land Company.
Driving along Route 219 will takes you North to South through Cattaraugus County. Nearly splitting the County in half, this is a popular roadway used to travel from Buffalo to Ellicottville or Salamanca. You are sure to see plenty of other vehicles along your way, as well as many prosperous businesses and modern companies. Hidden is a rich history full of the buzz of rising communities and industry when the County was first inhabited.
Follow Route 62 to a trip back in time, without looking very hard. Traveling from just below Gowanda to Conewango, the route displays rural landscapes, small town charm, and our community of Old Order Amish. Once bustling communities and factories lead people to settle in these parts. Now, you will find agricultural businesses and houses dispersed along either side of the road. Before hitting any historical sites, you will venture from Gowanda through a series of sharp curves, lush green treescapes, and alongside Thatcher Brook. This is a tributary of Cattaraugus Creek, famous for its
Old Chautauqua Road will lead you into the history of Cattaraugus County, as you travel from East to West across the County. This road was one of the first developed paths in the County. While the direct road no longer exists, Old Chautauqua Road is the name of the original path taken by the Holland Land Company after being developed to connect the holdings of that company that were to be sold. This guide will take you along a path over many renamed roads, while still trying to follow the original route of Old Chautauqua Road as closely as possible, as it was 200 years ago. Parts of the
Ellicottville has always been a very industrial village. Various industries flourished here in the 1800’s and early 1900’s for several reasons. It was the first settlement in the area with plenty of fast moving streams to support different industries and growing population. Also, it was the first county seat which added greatly to its popularity as a place to settle.
Slavery and the attitude each individual embraced regarding the subject was a very volatile, emotional topic during the 1800s. Right here in Cattaraugus County emotions were strong. This county is an area where few if any slaves could be found at that time, however, that did not temper the reaction of the people. We must remember the strong division of our country during this period in regards to slavery.