324 GENESEE COUNTY.
ALABAMA1—was formed from Shelby (Orleans co.) and Pembroke, as “ Gerrysville,”2 April
17, 1826. Its name was changed April 21, 1828. A part of Wales was annexed in 1832. It is
the N. W. corner town of the co. The surface is level or gently undulating. The n. and w. por¬
tions are covered by marshes, forming a part of the Tonawanda Swamp. Oak Orchard Creek flows
across the N. e. comer, and Tonawanda Creek across the s. w. corner. A limestone terrace, 50 to
75 ft. high, extends across the s. part of the town. Tonawanda Creek flows down this declivity in
a perpendicular cascade known as Tonawanda Falls, furnishing a fine water power. Near the
center of the n. part of the town, a few rods from the banks of Oak Orchard Creek, are the “ Oak
Orchard Acid Springs.”3 The soil is a gravelly and sandy loam with a clay sub-soil. Alabama.
Center (Alabama p. o.) contains 2 churches and several mills. Pop. 166. Wlaeatville (p.v.)
lies in the n. e. part of the town. Pop. 93. Smithville (South Alabama p. o.) lies near the e.
line. Pop. 147, The first settlement was made in 1806, by James Walsworth.4 The first church
(E. W. Bap.) was formed in the e. part of the town, in 1824, by Elder Samuel Whitcomb, the first
preacher.5 The Tonawanda Indian Reservation occupies a section of land 2 mi. wide, lying on
Tonawanda Creek and comprising about one-fourth of the area of the town.
ALEXANDER6—was formed from Batavia, June 8,1812. It lies on the s. border of the co.,
w. of the center. Its surface is hilly in the center and s. and rolling in the n. The summits in
the s. w. are 200 to 250 ft. above the valleys. The streams are Tonawanda Creek, flowing sr.
through the center of the town, Little Tonawanda, Huron, and Bowens Creeks, and several smaller
streams. The soil upon the hills is a gravelly loam with a clay sub-soil, and in the valleys it is a
rich alluvium. Alexander, (p. v.,) incorp. April 24, 1834, is situated upon Tonawanda Creek,
near the center of the town. It contains a flouring mill, seminary,7 and 3 churches. It is a station
upon the Attica branch of the Central R. R., and also upon the B., N. Y. & E. R. R. Pop. 345.
Brookville (p.o.) is a hamlet. The first settlement was made by Alexander Rea, in 1802.8
The first church (M. E.) was formed in 1835.9
BATAVIA —was formed March 30, 1802. Chautauqua was taken off in 1804, Alexander,
Bergen, Bethany, and Pembroke in 1812, and Elba and a part of Stafford in 1820. It is the central
town of the co. Its surface is level or gently undulating. A limestone ridge, 20 to 50 feet high
extends e. and w. through the x. part of the town. Tonawanda Creek flows northward from the
line of Alexander to Batavia Village, where it turns westward and flows centrally through the
town to the w. border. Bowens Creek is the only other considerable stream. The soil is a deep,
fertile, sandy and gravelly loam with a clay sub-soil. Batavia, (p.v.,) the co. seat, was incorp.
April 23, 1823. Besides the co. buildings, it contains a female seminary,10 union school,11 bank, 3
the abduction, an incident occurred which showed the excited
state of feeling that pervaded the community. During the day,
Frederick Follett, late Canal Commissioner, a mason, while at¬
tending to his duties as marshal of the day, suddenly found
himself surrounded by an infuriated crowd of armed men, evi¬
dently determined to kill him. He drew his sword, put spurs
to his horse, and succeeded in throwing off the grasp of two men
upon the bridle, and escaped from the crowd.
1 Named from the State of Alabama, and said to signify “ Here
2 Intended to be named in honor of David Gary, one of the early
settlers; hut through a cheat it was called “ Gerrysville,” from
Elbridge Gerry, Ex Vice-President.
3 These springs are 9 in number, and are all found within a
circle of 50 rods. They issue from mounds, evidently formed
by the action of the water, 2J to 4 ft. above the surrounding
surface. No two of these springs are alike; and in one instance
three springs issue from a single mound within 10 ft. of each
other, and the waters are essentially dissimilar. The following
is an analysis of the waters of the three principal springs:—
No. 2, by Prof. E. Emmons.
No. 1, by Profs. SiUiman ana,
Sulphate lime............. 1.552
“ iron............. 4.904
“ magnesia ......0.623
Free sulphuric acid 16.132
“ organic matter .....1.360
“ silica.................. 0.230
Total No.ofgrs. in lpt. 24.801
Free sulphuric acid 12.414
Sulphate lime............. 0.736
“ iron............. 3.920
“ magnesia ......1.236
Organic matter ...........0.100
Silica, a trace............. 0.000
Total No. of grs. in 1 pt. 18.406
Large quantities of this water are annually bottled and sold for
4 Among the other early settlers were Robt. Harper, Jesse Lund,
Dr. Smith, (from Vt.,) and Peter, Joseph, and James Holmes,
(from Delaware co.) The first births were those of twin children
of James Walsworth, in 1806; the first death was that of an un -
known traveler, at the house of Mr. Walsworth, in 1808. Ho
was buried without a coffin or religious services. The first
school was taught by Henry Howard, in 1817; the first inn was
kept by James Walsworth, in 1808; the first store, by Nahum
Loring, in 1828; and the first sawmill was erected in 1824, by
gam’l Whitcomb, at Wlieatville. .
5 The census reports 4 churches; 3 Bap. and 1M. E.
6 Named from Alexander Rea, the first settler, and for several
years a State Senator.
1 The Genesee and Wyoming Seminary was founded in 1834,
through the efforts and liberality of Samuel Benedict and Henry
Hawkins. In 1845, Mr. Hawkins bequeathed to the institution
$4000, his private library, and a geological cabinet. It has now
a respectable library and cabinet of natural history; and its main
building, erected of stone in 1837, has the capacity of accommo¬
dating 300 students.
s John Oney, Lewis Disbrow, Geo. Darrow, and Mr. Blackman
settled in the town in 1802-03. The first death was that of Wm.
Whitney, in 1803, by the fall of a tree. The first school was
taught by Mr. Jones, in the winter of 1805-06, at Alexander Vil¬
lage. Harvey Hawkins kept the first inn, in 1809, and the first
store, in 1807. Alexander Bea and Joseph Fellows built the
first sawmill, in 1804; and Wm. Adams the first gristmill, in
9 The census reports 3 churches in town; Presh., M. E., and
10 Mrs. Bryan’s Female Seminary, a boarding school for young
ladies. The school building is the former mansion of David E.
u The Batavia Union Schoolhouse was erected in 1847, at a
cost of $7000. It includes a higher English and classical de¬