History of Cherry Creek, NY
FROM: History of Chautauqua County, New York and its people
John P. Downs - Editor-in-Charge.
Fenwick Y. Hedley Editor-in-Chief.
Published By American Historical Society, Inc. 1921


Cherry Creek-The town of Cherry Creek, situated in the northern and eastern part of the county, was set off from the town of Ellington on May 4, 1829. When Surveyor Joshua Bentley, Jr., found the center of the new town to be on an island in a stream, he cut down a small cherry tree, made it into a sharpened stake, drove it down, and named the stream Cherry creek. The town took its name from the creek, settlement was made, and a village started in the locality once famous for its cherry trees, to which was given the name Cherry Creek.

Original purchases in township 4, Range 10:
1815-March, Joshua Bentley, 15; April, Joshua Bentley, (settled on by Joshua M. Kent); May, Gardner Crandall.
1816-May, Barber Babcock, 19; June, Ely D. Pendieton, 20; October, Reuben Cheney, 18.
1817-June, Elam Edson, 18; November, Rufus Hitchcock, 49.
1818-April, John Smith, 17; August, Hiram Hill, 49.
1821-October, John P. Hadley, 41; Henry Babcock, 20; Alvah Hadley, 41; Julius Gibbs, 41; Robert James, 36; Nathaniel Gibbs, Jr., 11; Eliphalet Wilcox, 17, Robert Page, 13.
1823-March, James Carr, 14; December, Enos A. Bronson, 56.
1824-February, Eason Matteson, 10; March, Ira B. Tanner, 46; May, Amos Abbey, 64; Nathan Worden, 16; June, Jared Ingalls, 22; Ira Bassett, July, Ward King, 17; October, William G. Carr, 24; Dudley Waters, 48.
1825-April, John Luce, 58; William Lathrop, 24; May, Ira Bassett and Samuel W. Wilcox, Jr., 25; September, George Burdeck, 38; October, Aury Cronkhite, 21; Arahel H. Mallory, 21; Eddy Wetherly, 28; November, Robert James, Jr., 35.
1826-April, Putnam Farrington, 63; October, Lyman Town and Thomas King, 25; December, Henry Luce, 55.
1827-April, Ebenezer Still, Jr., 39; June, Stephen Blaisdell, 18; September, Nehemiah Osborne, 31; Israel Séeley, 31; Issachar Hammond, 30.
1829-June, William A. Bowen, 13; July, Thomas King, 18; December, Sylvester Osborne, 14.

The statement is now unhesitatingly made that the first settlement in the town of Cherry Creek was made by Joseph M. Kent, on lot 9, in the spring of 1815. He was born in Royalton, Vermont, and after having lived in Herkimer and Onondaga counties, New York, removed to Chautauqua county, settling in what is now Cherry Creek with his wife and seven children. Mr. Kent. his son George, Nancy, his eldest daughter, and John P. Kent, a nephew, cleared the first land and raised the first crop of potatoes. The next spring, destitute of provisions and money, he felled a pine tree and made a canoe sixty feet in length, launched it in Conewango creek, put into it fifteen hundred pounds of maple sugar and some black salts, and ran it down to Pittsburgh. He there exchanged his cargo for flour, pork, salt, and with the help of his son George pushed his vessel with pikepoles back to Cherry Creek, having been absent about three weeks.

Joshua Bentley, Jr., the second settler, settled on lot 15, now known as the Decker farm, September 1, 1815. He had located in Ellery about 1808, and was one of the surveyors that ran the lines in this part of the county prior to its settlement. Cherry Creek's first road was cut out by John Kent, brother of Joseph M., one of the first purchasers of land in Villenova. In the spring of i8io he built his house on the old Indian camping grounds at the headwaters of the Conewango, also the first sawmill and gristmill in the eastern part of the county. Where the Indian trail from the Cattaraugus Reservation to the Allegheny crossed the farm later owned by Alfred H. Blaisdell, there were two large springs where the Indians had a camp with a stone fireplace. This camp was almost constantly occupied by parties of Indians, who stopped to fish and hunt as they passed either north or south.

John P. Kent, a son, and John Dighton, in the summer of 1812, cut out the first road through from Kent's Mill in Villenova, sixteen miles through Cherry Creek to Kennedyville, for which they received from the Holland Land Company ten dollars per mile. This road followed the line of the Conewango Valley on the Indian trail running on the west side of the village. Three years later they cut out another road to Sinclairville, branching off from the old road on lot i6 in Cherry Creek, taking a southwesterly line, passing the homes of Gardiner Crandall and Isaac Curtis on lot 23. At that time they were the only residents in town on this road. This has been known as the old Kent road, and is now called Kent street. Gardiner Crandall and Isaac Curtis had each purchased one hundred acres on lot 23. Mr. Crandall built a log house twenty-six by twenty, and in the spring of i8i6 both families moved into it and lived there until Mr. Curtis could build. Mr. Crandall lived many years in Cherry Creek, and became the father of twentytwo children by two wives. Stephen Curtis, a brother of Isaac, settled on adjoining land, and left two sons, Henry L. and John H. Curtis. James Marks the next purchaser of land (his deed calling for one hundred sixty acres in the south part of lot 20, bearing date October 20, 1815), built his log house, covered with bark and without any floor, and moved in his furniture, consisting of an ax, a gun and a "baking kittle." This was the first house built in the now incorporated village of Cherry Creek. His house soon after became unoccupied and remained so until about 1824; it was then fitted up for a schoolhouse for the first school taught in the village. Its teacher, Angeline Pickering, became the wife of John Babcock and settled in Busti. In May, 1816, Barber Babcock on lot 19, Ely D. Pendleton on lot 20 and Reuben Cheeney on lot 18, became settlers of Cherry Creek, lived here many years, raised families, cleared up farms and made homes. In June, 1817, Elam Edson, William Weaver, on lot i8, Rufus Hitchcock and Hiram Hill on lot 49, John Smith, lot 17, Henry Babcock, lot 20, Nathaniel Gibbs, Jr., lot 11, Eliphalet W. Wilcox, lot 17, Robert Page, lot 28, were settlers. Daniel Hadley from Vermont came with his family, November 9, 1817. Three of his sons settled in Cherry Creek, Niles and Alvah on parts of lot 41, John P. on lot 27, near the village. He married the daughter of Robert James, also an early settler. He took an active part in laying out and cutting out early roads in Cherry Creek and in getting the town set off from Ellington in 1829. He also frequently served in town offices and was town clerk at the time of his death. He held militia offices from corporal to major.

In the southwest part of the town lived Alvah Hadley, whose son, Ozro A., was for a time acting Governor of Arkansas, and Niles Hadley, who lived and died on his early purchased home. Also settled here Mr. Ward and his sons, William, On and Al; Hudson Smith, John Howard, Nathaniel Dunham, Arthur Hines, Addison Phillips, John Luce, Reuben A. Bullock, Myron Field, Horatio Hill. Joseph Price on lot had three sons: John, Lawrence and David. Abraham T. Andrus settled where the late John D. Mount lived. In the northwest part were: John Bartlett, Ira B. Tanner, Alvah Bannister, Elkanah Steward, Oliver Carpenter, Anson Newton, Wilbur Burdick, John Essex, J. Richardson, Eben Abbey, Putnam Farrington, a general of the War of 1812. Ora Parks, who settled in 1824 on lot 37, three miles in the woods from neighbors, cleared his farm and raised a large family. Enos A. Bronson came from Connecticut and settled on lot 50, near the north line, in 1825, where he died in 1858. His sons were William, Horace, Allen L., and Monson M.

In a little settlement at Shattuck's schoolhouse was made the first attempt at a village in the town in the spring of 1820, on lot 34. Here settled Robert James, Montgomery Evans, Norton Still, David Myers, Horatio Hill, Demas Stone, Robert James, Jr., and Randall Spencer, who held the first Methodist class meetings in his house for a number of years. A burying ground was soon laid out. Pliny Shattuck opened a blacksmith shop here in 1831. The hopes of having a village at this point were soon blasted.

George H. Frost, from Renssalaer county, came in 1823, and built the second house in what is now the village of Cherry Creek, on the south part of lot 20, where C. D. Leonard's cheese factory once stood (land taken up by James Marks in 1815). Mr. Frost became the first settler with a family in the village, kept the first tavern, and was the first postmaster; he afterward kept a store, later lived on a farm, but returned to the village, where he died in 1873. He had been for several years supervisor.

William Green, Almeron Bly, Elam Edson, Ira Bassett, John Bovee, Rollins Kilburn, Harry James, Aaron Bartlett, John P. Hadley, Thomas Berry, Cyrus Thatcher and Alfred Goodrich were early settlers in the village. In the vicinity were Michael Page, Eddy Weatherly, Jotham Godfrey, Stephen Blaisdell, Julius Gibbs, Henry Babcock, William Kilbourn and Thomas Carter, who established a tannery with a shoe shop. In the central part, Robert James settled in 1820, on lot 36, where he died. Of his sons, Robert J. was supervisor in 1831-32; Jonathan was a physician. Thomas Mount brought his wife and fourteen children from New Jersey. His sons were Ezekiel, John, Hezekiah, Furman and Samuel. Anthony Morian settled on lot in 1835 and raised a family of ten children.

In the southeast part, Wanton King settled on lot 9 in 1820; his sons were Thomas Ward and Obediah. On lot 12, Josiah Crumb settled. Eason Matteson located on lot 18 in 1820. In the south part the early settlers were: Daniel Waggoner, Isaac C. Brown, William S. Bullock, Moses Ells, Clark Losee, George W. Hitchcock. Job Eddy settled on lot 23, in the northeast part in 1820. Thomas Wilcox, from Hanover, was an early settler, first on lot 17, in 1819, on lot 21 in 1824, and on lot 24 in 1829, where he died. He was noted for his industry and for clearing much land. His sons were Daniel, Erastus, Alfred and Harlow. James Carr settled in 1823 on lot 15, land bought of Joshua Bentley, Jr., and afterwards kept store in the village. He was supervisor of Ellington in 1828-29 and the first supervisor of Cherry Creek. He had one son, Andrew J. William G. Carr came in October, 1829, with wife and two children and settled on lot 15. Janus Nash from Stephentown, an early school teacher, settled on lot 23. Jared Ingalls located on all of lot 22 in 1825 and built a sawmill. Daniel B. Parsons, from Madison county, settled in 1850 on lot 23, where he died. Both he and his son, Reuben W., were supervisors. William Weaver, in 1817, settled on lot i8; a few years after on lot 14, where he died. On Powers Hill, George Sheffield settled on lot 29; his sons were Aaron, Hiram, Alanson and J udson. Daniel Powers, a son-in-law, from whom the hill takes its name, settled on the same lot.

The first birth in town was that of Lydia, daughter of Joseph M. and Patty Kent, in 1816; she married Charles B. Green, of Ellington. The first marriage was James Battles to Rachael, daughter of Daniel Hadley, June 6, 1819. The first death was that of Rufus Hitchcock in 1820; he fell from the roof of his house just as he had completed it, and fractured his skull. The first school was taught by Reuben Cheeney, in the south part of the town. The first merchant was Seth Grover, who started in trade in 1831. He had in connection with his store an ashery and a pearling oven. Later Cyrus Thatcher and George H. Frost were in trade. The first resident physician, Horace Morgan, came in 1829. He was followed by Oliver B. Main, Edwin G. Bly, T. G. Walker and others. Among the early tailors were Jonathan Greenman and Russell Bartlett. The first sawmill was built by William Kilburn in 1824 on Cherry Creek, near the village; be attached, the next year, a shop for making spinning wheels, chairs, etc., to his mill. The second sawmill was built by Robert James and William Green in 1833. The first grist mill was built by Hull Nickerson in 1828, near the site of Price's sawmill. It had one run of stones and was used only for corn. It was known for years as the old "pepper" mill. In 1848 Joseph Kent built a grist mill with all modern appliances with three runs of stones. This mill was burned in 1869 and rebuilt in 1870 by Silas Vinton. Immediately under the grocery store of C. L. Frost a large spring bubbled up. In the early days of settlement this was much larger than now and overflowed quite an area of land. The deer found some attractive quality in the water not present in any other spring and resorted there often in numbers. This gave it the name of "the deer lick," by which it was long known.

The first town meeting in Cherry Creek after its formation was at the hotel of George H. Frost in March, 1830. At that meeting James Carr was elected the first supervisor, Robert James the first town clerk.

Supervisors-James Carr, 1830-33-36-40-46-52. Robt. James, Jr., 1831-32; Geo. H. Frost, 1834-35; Oliver Carpenter, 1837; Horace Bronson, 1838; Wm. G. Carr, 1839; Wm. Kilbourn, 1841-43; Arch. F. Robins, 1844; Oliver B. Main, 1845-49-50; Chas. A. Spencer, 1847-48; Jos. Kent, 1851-56; Daniel B. Parsons, 1853-54; Silas Vinton, 1855-59-60-68-71; Horatio Hill, 1857-58-64; R. W. Parsons, 1861-63-65; Anthony Morian, 1862-67; Geo. N. Frost, 1866-6972-73-75-77; W. C. Carpenter, 1870; Harry Bilings, 1874; Wm. S. Blaisdell, 1878-79; Jas. Richardson, 1880; S. A. Ferrin, 1881-92; W. F. Stetson, 1889; Wm. I. Phillips, 1890; R. A. Hall, 1893-95; C. L. Wheeler, 1896-1903; C. A. Mount, 1904-05; Edgar W. Curtis, 1906-10; Ellis W. Storms, 1911; Edgar W. Curtis, 1912-13; C. Leroy Edwards, 1914-20.

The population of Cherry Creek in 1915, according to the State census, was 1630, of whom 91 were aliens. Number of acres in the town, 22,957, valued at $763,625; assessed value (1918), $599,117.

Cherry Creek is an incorporated village, beautiful in location, with broad, smooth streets adorned with good residences and business houses, and in addition to good stores in every department of trade has a bank, newspaper, canning factory, good hotels, churches, high school, fire department, a very popular form of government. The village is a station on the Buffalo & Southwestern railroad, 48 miles from Buffalo and 22 miles from Jamestown.

The principal industries of the village are the Cherry Creek Canning Company (canned fruits), and the W. F. Stetson Company, butter firkins. There are also three small factories. Cherry Creek village was incorporated, May 20, 1893, the present government being vested in a president and two trustees, with clerk, treasurer and collector. The first election was held June 17, 1893, C. A. Mount being chosen the first president. The first trustees were I. S. Benton, W. E. Shepardson, H. Clinton Mount. The high school building was erected in 1896, and is a modernly equipped school with a competent corps of teachers. The post oflice was established in 1832, George H. Frost, postmaster. Rural free delivery was established September 15, 1902, with three routes. The Cherry Creek Fire Department was organized July 15, 1890, Charles J. Shults being elected the first chief, C. A. Mount, the first president.

The Methodist Episcopal church was organized in 1857 with seven members. Rev. O. S. Meade the first pastor. The present church edifice was erected in 1881 at a cost of $5,000.

The First Baptist Church was organized October 26, 1832, with twelve members, Elder Bennet the first pastor. In 1896 the church was rebuilt.

The Free Baptist Church was organized in 1826 by Rev. Thomas Grinnell, and was the first religious organization in Cherry Creek. A house of worship was built in 1846 at a cost of $2,500.

A Christian Church was organized March 23, 1839. The church had no meeting house, but maintained its organization up to about 1861.

Cherry Creek Lodge, No. 384, Free and Accepted Masons, was instituted in 1853 with nine charter members, and received the present warrant in June, 1855. William S. Blaisdell was the first master.

Cherry Creek Lodge, No 463, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, was instituted April 6, 1852, with six charter members, J. L. Clark the first noble grand.

Bullock Post, No. 304, Grand Army Republic, was organized November 2, 1882, with twenty charter members.

Cherry Creek Grange, No. 527, Patrons of Husbandry, was organized August 18, 1887, with twenty-eight charter members. M. A. Phillips was its first master.

Cherry Creek Lodge, No. 42, Ancient Order United Workmen, was organized November 15, 1876, with twenty charter members. S. V. Q. Sherman was the first master workman.

Pocahontas Hive, No. 21, Ladies of the Maccabees, was instituted in September, 1891, with thirteen charter members. Mrs. A. Bronson was the first lady commander.

Ensign Circle, No. 281, was instituted November 18, 1896, with sixteen charter members. Dr. Thomas E. Soules was the first president.

Pocahontas Tent, No. 101, Knights of the Maccabees, was instituted in October, 1888, with eighteen charter members.

The Woman's Christian Temperance Union was organized July 3, 1888, with a membership of twenty.

Golden Chapter, No. 252, Order of the Eastern Star, was organized October 16, 1902. Mrs. Charles J. Shults was the first worthy matron and Isaac S. Benton, worthy patron.

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