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vated, rising from 1200 to 1400 feet above tide water while on the shores of Cayuga and Seneca lakes it is 800 or 900 feet lower. 500 feet of this depression, however, occurs within two miles of the lakes, where the streams running northward fall over the ledge of the Chemung sandstone, which forms the limit of the highest terrace of the table land.
Rivers, &c. Salmon, Fall, Six Mile, and Halsey's creek are the only streams of importance. By their rapid descent. they furnish extensive and valuable hydraulic privileges.
Falls. The most remarkable falls in this county are the Taghannuc, upon Halsey's creek, at the distance of one mile from Cayuga lake. The whole descent, within a short distance, is 300 feet. The water falls, in a single cascade, over a precipice 216 feet in height, with a sheet of water sixty feet wide and two feet deep. The falls around Ithaca also possess great attractions to the lover of the wonders of nature. Fall creek has a descent of 438 feet within one mile. On the Cascadilla, is a fall of 100 feet, in the form of a gigantic stairway.
LAKES. Seneca lake forms a portion of the Western boundary of this county. while Cayuga lake indents it on the north for a distance of about eighteen miles. The scenery at the southern extremity of the latter is highly picturesque.
RAILROADS. The Ithaca and Owego railroad extends from sthaca to Owego, the county seat of Tioga county. It is twenty-nine and a half miles in length. The proposed route of the New York and Erie railroad is through this county.
CLIMATE. The climate of the county is mild and agreeable, modified in some degree, perhaps, by its proximity to the Seneca and Cayuga lakes. Fruits thrive here in great perfection. It is regarded as healthful.
GEOLOGY AND MINERALS. The whole county, with the exception of two small tracts on the shores of the Cayuga and Seneca lakes, in the towns of Lansing and Hector, belongs to the Erie group, and consists in the north, of the Ludlowville shales, and in the south of the Chemung sandstone. The two small tracts, to which we have referred, are patches of limestone, belonging to the Hamilton group, which appear, beneath the sandstone, near the shores of the lake.
It has but few minerals. Marl and gypsum occur in considerable quantities. Calcareous tufa has been found, near Ithaca, investing moss, &c. and producing, in popular phraseology, petrifactions. There are two or three sulphur springs, of no great reputation, in the county.
SOIL AND VEGETABLE PRODUCTIONS. The soil is, from the geological structure of the rocks, highly fertile, and does not require, in most parts, the addition of any fertilizing agent to maintain or increase its productiveness, the decomposed rocks affording a sufficient stimulus. The hills are productive to their
summits, and afford luxuriant grazing, while the valleys yield large crops of grain. Fruit is extensively and profitably cultivated. The timber consists of oak, white and yellow pine, hemlock, beech, maple, basswood, elm, ash, poplar, cherry and chestnut.
PURSUITS. Agriculture is the pursuit of a majority of the inhabitants. Oats, corn, buckwheat, wheat and potatoes are raised in considerable quantities; the products of the dairy are very large, and much wool is grown by the farmers.
Manufactures also occupy the attention of a considerable number of the inhabitants. Flour, oil, woollen goods, lumber, leather, distilled liquors, paper and potash, are the principal articles produced. The manufactures of the county in 1945, amounted to nearly one and a half millions of dollars.
Commerce. Its commerce is quite extensive. By means of the lakes, it has a direct communication with the Erie canal, while by the Ithaca and Owego railroad the produce of the counties south of it, is brought to a market, and the manufactures of the county distributed over Tioga and Chemung counties, and northern Pennsylvania.
STAPLES. Butter, cheese, wool, oats, buckwheat, wheat and potatoes.
Schools. In 1846, there were in the county 215 district schools, which were in session an average period of eight months, furnishing instruction to 12,881 children, at an expense for tuition of $21,045. The number of volumes in the district libraries was 24,648.
There were also seventeen private schools, with 497 scholars, and two academies, with 231 pupils.
RELIGIOUS DENOMINATIONS. Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Congregationalists, Unitarians, Dutch Reformed, Universalists and Friends. The whole number of churches, is seventy-four; of clergymen, seventy-five.
History. The towns of Newfield, Danby, and Caroline, were purchased of the state, by Messrs. Watkins and Flint. The remainder, (except a small portion in the northeastern part of the town of Dryden, which belonged to the ten townships granted to Massachusetts,) formed a portion of the Military Tract, and the settlers derived their titles through the soldiers' patents. The county was organized in 1817, and was named in honor of the late Daniel D. Tompkins, formerly Governor of the state, and Vice President of the United States. Previous to the completion of the Erie canal, it was in a languishing condition, but since the opening of the canal, its agricultural and manufacturing interests have greatly prospered. Its early settlers were chiefly from New England. The founders of the town of Lansing, were Germans from Pennsylvania.
VILLAGES. ITHACA village, in the town of the same name, is the seat of justice for the county. It is situated partly on the alluvial flats bordering Cayuga lake, (from which it is about one and a half miles distant,) and partly upon the hills, which form a natural amphitheatre around it. It is regularly laid out, its buildings are neat and tasteful, and its streets well shaded.
It is tinely located for trade, communicating freely by means of the lake and canal, with eastern and western New York, and by the railroad and the Susquehanna river, with the coal region. of Pennsylvania. The completion of the Erie railroad will still further increase its facilities for business. Its lumber trade is very great.
In available hydraulic power for manufacturing purposes, it is second to no village in New York. It is already largely engaged in manufacturing. Here is located an incorporated academy, with spacious buildings, for the instruction of both sexes, a large Lancasterian school, and numerous select schools, in a flourishing condition. Population, 4200.
Trumansburgh, in the town of Ulysses, is a flourishing village, with some manufactories. Population, 1000.
Danby, in the town of the same name, is a thriving village. Population, 500.
Dryden, in the town of the same name, Burdette, in the town of Hector, Ludlowville, in the town of Lansing, and Newfield, in the town of the same name, are villages of some importance.
7. Hamburgh, 1812.
15. Alden, 1823. 8. Boston, 1812.
16. Colden, 1827. 9. Amherst, 1818.
17. Lancaster, 1833. 10. Holland, 1818.
18. Black Rock, 1837. 11. Wales, 1818.
19. Brandt, 1838. 12. Collins, 1821.
20. Chictawaga, 1838. 13. Evans, 1821.
21. Tonawanda, 1838. 14. Sardinia, 1821. Rivers, &c. M. Niagara river. b. Ellicott's creek. d. Seneca.
f. Cattaraugus g. Cauquaga. h. Two Sisters. e. Cazenove.
1. Buffalo. n. Cayuga. p. Murder Creek. r. Tonawanda Creek. Lakes. L. Erie. Islands. W. Grand Island. Battle Fields. Lake Erie. Buffalo. Cities and Villages. BUFFALO. Black Rock. Williamsville.
BOUNDARIES. North by Niagara county ; East by Genesee and Wyoming; South by Cattaraugus and Chautauque counties; and West by Lake Erie and Niagara river.
SURFACE. This county lies upon the great western plain. Its northern half is level or gently undulating; the southern is hilly, particularly along the streams; the dividing ridge which separates the waters flowing northward, from the tributaries of Cattaraugus creek, passes through the southern tier of towns.
RIVERS. The county is well watered; Tonawanda creek forms its northern boundary. Its principal tributaries are Murder and Ellicott's, or Eleven mile, creeks. Buffalo creek, formed by the union of Seneca, Cayuga, and Cazenove creeks, waters the central portion of the county, The other streams are smaller: the principal are Cauquaga, or Eighteen mile, Two Sisters, Delaware, and Little Buffalo creeks.
Lake Erie forms a portion of its western boundary.
CLIMATE. From its proximity to the lake, the climate is moist, warmer in winter and cooler in summer, than some other portions of the state. The vegetation is from eight to ten days earlier than in the same parallels in the eastern part of the state.
GEOLOGY AND MINERALS. The Onondaga salt group, (limestone,) is the basis rock of this county. It appears on the surface in the northern tier of towns. The Helderberg series succeed this in the towns of Buffalo, Chictawaga, Lancaster and Alden, and these in their turn give place to the Hamilton group of limestones. In the southern half of the county, the Cashaqua, or Ludlowville shales, and the Chemung sandstones form the surface rocks.