The small book Lyons, NY 1911 was contributed by Wykle Family researcher Kathleen Simmons. "The cover simply says: Lyons, N.Y. 1911 and there is a photo of the Wayne County Court House. It was published by the Lyons Republican Print, Lyons, NY." Lyons 1911 focuses on the economy of the village, profiling prominent business owners and businesses. The description of each business is valuable if you've seen your ancestor's occupation on the 1910 census. Over the coming year we'll be posting the many photographs from this informative early book.

LYONS, N.Y. 1911

Lyons Republican Print, Lyons, NY 1911

When the War of Revolution began, the site of the village of Lyons was covered by a dense, luxuriant forest.

Where the white man now pursues his varied vocations, in the busy hive of a thriving village, the red man then hunted game in the primeval wilderness. This spot was a part of the land of the Senecas. Their wigwams dotted the wooded slopes, and their papooses played amid the trees, where now the children of the white man throng to school. The smoke of their camp fires has long since faded into the upper blue, now darkened by the smoke of many chimneys.

From the view point of the historian, this transformation was almost incredibly swift, for altho a century and a quarter has elapsed since the red man was monarch of this region, the years that witnessed his decline and fall were few.

In 1775, this tribe dwelt peacefully upon one of the richest and fairest domains of the earth, and before the year 1800 they had vanished completely from their Western Eden. The war which they did nothing to provoke, the causes of which they probably never understood, wrought their ruin. Soon after the War of the Revolution, the whites began to settle in this region, and the remnant of the Indians retreated before the wave of civilization.

The village of Lyons was laid out and surveyed in 1796. In 1808 it had two taverns and a store, a tailor, saddler, shoemaker and blacksmith. The progress of Lyons was necessarily slow for the first half century of its existence, but gradually the pioneers hewed their way into the vast forest and made their homes, and Lyons became the central point for a large amount of trade and commerce, many representative enterprises locating here as the building of the village and community progressed.


Lyons is located half way between Rochester and Syracuse, an hour's ride by steam or electric car to either city, and is one of the most beautiful villages in the State. It has a population of 5,000, well laid out streets and avenues, excellent sidewalks, beautiful lawns, handsome and stately residences and business blocks and fertile agriculture surroundings. There is almost no limit to the fertility and productiveness of these fields, and the products of the orchards are shipped all over this and foreign countries.

The village is one of the trade centers of the State; the third transfer station in the State, and is capable of becoming a manufacturing center, on an extensive scale. Splendid factory sites, superior shipping facilities, cheap fuel and electric service, water power and an excellent High School are some of the strong factors which will interest prospective manufacturers.

The commercial life of Lyons is good, and its tone healthy. There are establishments in all lines that show metropolitan style and do a handsome trade. The banks, most potent factors in any place, are strong, liberal in their treatment of all legitimate business and ably managed. Few villages of the size in this country have a better fire department. This department consists of six hose companies, two steam fire engines, two ladder trucks carrying over 300 feet of single and extension ladders, with hooks, pipes and other devices. There is over a mile of hose, and the department has over 225 men, and is well supplied with patent nozzles, smoke arrestors and other conveniences for inside work.

The public schools of Lyons are noted for their efficiency and thoroughness, and compare well with those of other cities. The postal service of Lyons is admirable; it ranks second-class in postal receipts. The Opera House, with a seating capacity of 1,600, is acknowledged to be one of the best patronized in the State.

The history of Lyons is that of a thrifty, self-reliant, progressive people, and to them is due all praise for developing its natural resources, giving vitality to its industrial energies and direction to its fiscal agencies, and to them is due all that is commendable in its mercantile, mechanical, manufacturing and commercial life.

The Barge Canal, one of the greatest public works ever undertaken by the State, is in course of construction. To the south and west of Lyons one may see mile after mile of mounds of excavated material and the most improved types of excavating machinery, huge steam shovels doing the work of hundreds of men, and in some instances the inventive genius of the contractor has been brought into play to provide new devices for handling the thousands of tons of rock and each taken out of the course of the big water-way, which is to traverse the State. Nor is the Barge Canal confined to the immediate vicinity of Lyons, contractors are doing the work in various parts of the State not only in excavating, but in building mammoth locks and harbors. And when the new docks are built in Lyons, for which the State has appropriated $95,000, and the canal is completed and in operation, Lyons will become a great shipping and receiving center, lying as it does practically equi-distant between Albany and Buffalo and nearest to the great coal fields of Pennsylvania, to which there is a direct line of railroad from this village, and being the nearest point where the coal of Pennsylvania and iron from Lake Superior and the West can meet for manufacturing purposes.

LYONS NATIONAL BANK. This representative institution was organized and incorporated as a national bank in 1865. Its capital stock is $60,000; its surplus and profits, $18,000' its deposits, $300,000, and its total resources, $475,000, to which may be added its stockholders' liability. The Lyons National Bank has always been liberally patronized and has withstood the stringency in the money markets and other financial panics without effort. Its stock is in strong hands, and with its large resources judicially invested, economical and conservative management, it may justly be said to be one of the leading national banks of this State. The officers are: D. P. Chamberlain, president; F. W. Chamberlain, vice-president; Frank A. Tanner, cashier; W. H. Akenhead, assistant cashier.

WILLIAM HOUSE conducts a leading bottling business in Lyons and also a wholesale and retail liquor business. He became a resident of Lyons in 1885, coming here from Scranton, Pa., where he had carried on a glass blowing industry. In 1900 he purchased the Nellis Block and erected a bottling building, and has built up a large business here. Mr. House served as President of the Village of Lyons for two years, and was also upon the Board of Health. He is a member of the Odd Fellows, Masons, Elks and the German Mechanics, and is a public spirited and highly esteemed citizen. He is ably assisted in the conduct of his business by his son, Walter, who is manager of the bottling department. They employ a force of some ten assistants.

N. A. MESTLER, general merchant and produce dealer, Nos. 29 and 33 Water Street, established his produce business in Lyons in 1908. He has conducted a general store and produce business at Lock Berlin since 1890, which he still continues. In Lyons he utilizes a block 40x6 feet in dimensions, three stories in height, and has built up an extensive trade. Mr. Mestler has made it possible for farmers to dispose of their produce for cash in Lyons, instead of trading it out as was usual prior to the time he established business here. He served as Justice of the Peace in the Town of Galen for nine years, and has been deeply interested in school affairs there. He is a prominent business man and highly esteemed.

MARSHALL & BARRICK'S business is probably the oldest hardware house in the county, certainly the oldest in Lyons. It is also today what it was in the beginning, one of the leading houses in that line in the county. It was established in 1824 by Samuel Hecox, Dr. A. L. Beaumont and H. N. Stafford and bought of S. C. Redgrave. After different changes, A. E. Marshall & Company and later Marshall & Nobel, became proprietors, and the firm became The Marshall-Barrick Company in 1909. The business occupies five floors of double stores and comprises the hardware and kindred trade, including plumbing and farm machinery. Fifteen men are employed the year round, part of the time twenty hands. A new garage has recently been erected by this company near their hardware business, which is especially adapted to the requirements of the firm's large automobile trade. It is equipped with modern facilities. The agency for the E-M-F, the Flanders and the Cadillac automobiles is successfully carried on and a thriving trade enjoyed. Messrs. Marshall and Barrick are progressive and very enterprising business men who know how to successfully conduct their large and important enterprises.

HOTCHKISS ESSENTIAL OIL COMPANY. This industry has attained a distinguished position among the leading enterprises of the Central States. The essential oils manufactured here are standard goods for purity and excellence in the markets of the world, and bring a higher price. They are quoted in all the commercial papers bearing upon chemical productions as the best and purest and have received the highest awards at the World's Expositions. Mr. H. G. Hotchkiss, the founder of the industry in 1838, died October 27, 1897. The H. G. Hotchkiss Essential Oil Company was incorporated in 1894, and Mr. Calvin Hotchkiss has been president of the company since 1897. Mr. Calvin Hotchkiss served as President of the Village in 1879, also as Village Trustee, and was upon the School Board for eighteen years. He is a member of Humanity Lodge, F. & A. M., Newark Chapter, Zenobia Commandery, Palmyra, and is a very public spirited and highly esteemed citizen of Lyons.

WILLIAM HOLLOWAY & SONS. This business was established by Mr. Wm. Holloway, April 1, 1904, in Lyons. He had prior to this conducted business in Penn Yan for a number of years. A general line of gentlemen's fine clothing and furnishings is carried, and a store 60x25 utilized; a splendid trade is enjoyed. Upon January 1, 1911, Mr. Holloway admitted his two sons, George H. and Merrill J., in full partnership. Mr. Holloway is President of Lyons Business Men's Association, a member of the Elks Lodge, 869, of Lyons, the Odd Fellows Lodge, 149, of Penn Yan, and the Milo Lodge, F. & A. M., of Penn Yan. He is a much esteemed citizen of this village and has many friends wherever known.

LA MOTTE M. BLAKELY, at one time President of the village of Lyons, was born in Perry, Wyoming County, N. Y., November 19, 1830, of Revolutionary ancestry. He was educated in the district schools and the East Bloomfield Academy. In 1848 Mr. Blakely left home to cast his fortunes in the then new country in the northwest, and there he engaged in the lumber trade, shipping lumber down the Mississippi and up the Missouri Rivers, until the opening of the rebellion. While engaged in business there, Mr. Blakely became active in Iowa State politics and participated in many of the State conventions. At the close of the Civil War he went to Washington, N. C., where he made his headquarters, while for twenty years he traded in lumber and cotton with marked success, his operations extending through the eastern section of the Southern States. At the same time he bought considerable tracts of land, timbered and unimproved, which he still owns. He spent so many years in that country and his investments, circulating thousands of dollars, were so large that he became known there. Although Mr. Blakely, returning to Lyons in 1888, has since spent most of his time in this village, he has maintained close relations with a large circle of friends and business connections in the South, and the warm friendships he still maintains there are heartily reciprocated. His interest in the welfare of Lyons in manifested in the zealous manner in which he engages in public matters that claim his attention. His activity as a Republican has served the party many ways. He occupied the position of President of the Village a term, and President of the Board of Health three years. He is equally active in the affairs of Grace Episcopal church, where he is now warden, having been vestryman for eighteen years. Mr. Blakely became well known as a member of the state commission at the World's Fair in Paris. He was appointed by Gov. Black for the Seventh Judicial District and was made Vice-President of the commission. Having charge of the fruit exhibit from this State, he made a creditable record in giving the Exposition one of its best features. This fact was recognized by the Exposition management, which awarded him a certificate of honor and a gold medal.

JAMES D. BASHFORD, Treasurer of Wayne County, has always resided here. He has engaged in active business from the time he left school, and all of his business and property interests, his home and social life are centered in Lyons, the welfare of which is his first and last concern. In political circles he is an aggressive, working Republican, with a personal influence that has been demonstrated in convention and caucus and in his election four times as County Treasurer. Under his administration the affairs of this important position are being managed with zeal, good judgment and economy. Martin Glynn's Democratic board of examiners under this administration carefully audited the Wayne County office and pronounced it O. K., a cordial endorsement of Mr. Bashford's conduct of affairs.

CLYDE W. KNAFF, Judge and Surrogate of Wayne County, received his education at Palmyra Union School and Cornell University and was admitted to the Bar in 1894. Judge Knapp has manifested great zeal and energy in matters of local importance and interest, and has served Lyons faithfully and well in different local offices. In 1908 he was elected County Judge and Surrogate. Judge Knapp has always stood for what was best, purest and most honorable in private, professional and public life, and justly has the esteem and confidence of the people of Wayne County.

JERRY COLLINS has, during his long tenure of office, gained the full confidence and respect of the public, and his zeal in the discharge of his many responsible duties and his admirable work in handling all kinds of cases have made him a man almost indispensable in the Sheriff's department. His celebrated capture of Oliver Curtis Perry was a fine piece of strategy and exhibition of great nerve, which will long remain prominent in the detective annals of the country. Mr. Collins has held office for nearly thirty years. He has served continuously as Sheriff or as Deputy Sheriff during this time, and in the discharge of his official duties knows neither party nor creed.

WILLIAM H. AKENHEAD, Village President, was born in the town of Galen, December 24, 1868. He came to Lyons on April 1, 1888, and accepted a position in the hardware store of S. C. Redgrave, which position he held for two years. He then accepted a position with the Lyons National Bank, where he has been continuously from then to the present time, being assistant cashier. Mr. Akenhead is a member of the Steamer Hose Company No. 2 and has served as Chief of the fire department. He has served four years as village trustee and was one of the most active and efficient members of the Board. Mr. Akenhead is a gentleman of marked characteristics combined with a most pleasing address, which has made him a host of friends and well wishers.

A. E. BURNETT, merchant in Lyons for 35 years, has represented Lyons on the Board of Supervisors in 1889, 1891, 1893, 1894, 1909, 1910, and 1911. He is one of the active Republicans of the county and prominent in public affairs. Burnett & Co., of which he is the senior member, has been doing a general merchandise business in Lyons since April 1st, 1875. They also do a large business in Lehigh Valley coal. In 1899 they established a fruit barrel manufacturing business which has become an important industry, and are also sole agents in the town of Lyons for all the products, farm implements, harvesting machines, etc., of the International Harvester Company, and have been since 1903.

GEORGE MAPES, manufacturer of cigars on a larger scale than most of the manufacturers in Wayne County, began business with a partner May 1, 1876, and has so largely extended it that his leading line of cigars have a wide sale in the western and southern parts of the State. Mr. Mapes was born at Lyons, February 14, 1852. Circumstances were such that when a boy he left school to earn his living, and began by selling popcorn and fruit on the railway trains passing through Lyons. This was prior to the days of the great Union News Company. Stimulated by the competition of other lads, he worked like a beaver and laid aside quite a sum of money. Then for five and a half years he was the Express Company's driver at Lyons. He had no practical knowledge of the cigar business when in 1876 he joined in the partnership of Snider & Mapes, but his early business training stood him in stead, and although a short time after the firm was changed to Mapes & Vosteen, the business continued to grow. On January 1, 1882, Mapes & Vosteen dissolved partnership and Mr. Mapes carried on the business alone at the old stand until 1906, when he purchased the Lyons Republican Block and moved therein. He is a substantial and highly esteemed citizen and successful business man of Lyons.

Mr. F. W. COFFEY, automobile dealer, has been very successful in placing a large number of the celebrated Ford machines with discriminating patrons. Although only few months in the business, his success has been most encouraging. He has sold over twenty machines already this spring. At the present time Mr. Coffey is erecting a large garage adjacent to the building occupied by his father, Hon. Charles Coffey, produce dealer, which will be completed in the near future, when he will have every facility at hand to successfully prosecute his business.

CHRISTIAN FUSZ conducts a leading cafe in Lyons. He is a prominent German-American, and is a director in Thomas Ryan's Consumers' Brewing Company of Syracuse. Mr. Fusz's establishment in Lyons caters to the public most satisfactorily. The bar is supplied with the best of everything, and meals and lunches are served at all hours. Fusz's Cafe is located at Nos. 23 and 25 Canal Street, and Mr. Fusz is one of Lyons' most popular citizens.

J. A. ROSE conducts in the Opera House Block a prosperous and up-to-date photographic business. He is prepared to execute photography in all its branches and makes a specialty of Cyko enlargements, an ideal enlargement that produces brilliant image, transparent shadows, and clear, high lights. He has been in the photographic business since 1881 and in Lyons for the past three years in this line. Mr. Rose also manufactures in a small way Gra-Cola, a cereal food that is growing in public favor and which is sold principally throughout Western New York.

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