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Lyons Presbyterian Church Sign


From the 1860 Gazetteer of the State of New York, by J. H. French

LYONS - was formed from Sodus, March 1, 1811. Arcadia was taken off in 1825. It lies on the W. border of the co., a little E. of the center. Its surface is a moderately rolling region, broken by sand ridges. The Canandaigua Outlet from the S., and Mud Creek from the W., join in the S. part and form Clyde River. The soil is a sandy and gravelly loam, with marl upon the creek bottom lands. Lyons, (p.v.) on the canal, at the junction of Canandaigua Outlet and Mud Creek, was incorp. April 18, 1854. It contains the co. buildings, 7 churches, 2 banks, 2 newspaper offices, a union school (1), and several manufactories (2); and it is an important R. R. station. Pop. 3,221. Alloway, (p.v.) in the S. part, on Canandaigua Outlet, contains a church, a grist-mill, and 30 houses. The first settlement was commenced in 1789, by Nicholas and Wm. Stansell and John Featherly. (3) They settled with their families (12 persons in all) a half mile S. of the present village of Lyons. They were piloted up the Mohawk (where they had previously settled) and by the usual water route, by Wemple, an Indian trader. Charles Williamson, agent of the Pulteney Estate, commenced a settlement at Lyons Village in 1794, through Charles Cameron, his local agent. Jas. Otto came in 1796. In 1798, Judge Evert Van Winkle and 40 others came in, from N. J. and Md.; and in 1801, Judge Daniel Dorsey and family, from Md. Judge Dorsey had previously purchased of Mr. Williamson nearly 1,000 acres in the immediate vicinity of the village. Rev. John Cole (Meth.) was the first local preacher. (4)


  1. The Lyons Union School was among the first of the kind established in the State. It employs 12 teachers and has 800 to 900 pupils.
  2. Among these are an extensive manufactory of essential oils (principally peppermint), a furnace machine and agricultural implement shop, a pottery, brewery, tannery, tile manufactory, brickyard, fanning mill factory, and a manufactory of saddle trees. About 10,000 lbs. of peppermint oil are produced annually in the co., - 1/2 of the whole amount in the U. S. - Trans. Ag. Soc. 1855, p. 657
  3. John Riggs, Richard Jones, Geo. Case, Wm. Gibbs, and John Perrine were early settlers. The first marriage was that of Jas. Otto and a daughter of Capt. John Dunn. John Riggs kept the first inn, in 1801; Judge Daniel Dorsey, the first store; Henry Tower, agent of Mr. Williamson, built the first mills, at Alloway, in 1796; and Dorsey & Milton, the first carding and cloth dressing mill, in 1807.
  4. There are 8 churches in town; 2 M. E., Presb., Prot. E., Bap., Evan. Luth., Germ. Evan. Ref., and R. C.


From the 1824 Gazetteer of the State of New York, by Horatio Gates Spafford

LYONS, a Post-Township of Ontario County, erected in 1811, from the S. end of Sodus; 16 miles N. of Geneva, 205 from Albany; bounded N. by Sodus, E. by Seneca County, S. by Phelps, W. by Palmyra and a part of Williamson. It is 8 miles E. and W., and 7 N. and S.; and comprises township No. 12, in the 1st range of Phelps and Gorham's purchase, 2 miles of the S. end of No. 13 with the gore of land E. of them to Seneca County. The soil is good, and it has abundance of mill-seats. Mud Creek runs easterly across the S. part, and is from 3 to 6 rods wide. There are several mills erected upon it, with locks in the dams, for the passing of boats, carrying 100 to 150 barrels. This stream enters Canandaigua Creek in this town. - Salmon Creek rises in the N. part, and runs N. into Sodus Bay. This town has the Erie Canal, on a very devious course, along Mud Creek, and of course, will now think little of the navigation of that little stream, once so useful in this way. The Canandaigua Outlet meets Mud Creek in the SE. corner, and united, bear away eastward toward Seneca River. The population and business of this town are rapidly increasing, particularly about the Village of Lyons, through which the Canal runs, creating a new era in all sorts of business. For a Line of Packets, see Palmyra, with eyes asquint on the remarks upon prospective civil divisions. Lyons V. is about 15 miles E. of Palmyra, by the Canal, 9 W. of Clyde V., 11 W. of Galen, 17 E. of Macedon (a new town from the W. half of Palmyra), 18 ESE of Ontario, 11 ESE of Williamson, 12 SSE of Sodus, and 12 SSW of Wolcott. It is becoming a place of commanding importance, has a rapidly increasing population, and will be more particularly noticed in the Appendix. Population, 1972; 968 persons employed in agriculture, 120 in manufactures, and 16 in commerce; 5 foreigners not naturalized; 12 free blacks; no slaves; taxable property, $250908; school districts, 20; schools kept 7 months; public monies received in 1821, $322.91; 1257 children; 1066 taught in the schools that year; electors, 786; 8853 acres of improved land; 3200 cattle, 641 horses, 6428 sheep; 28764 yards of cloth; 2 grist mills, 9 saw mills, 1 fulling mill, 2 carding machines, 1 cotton and woollen factory, 1 distillery, 1 ashery.

Current Place Names in the Town of Lyons:

Alloway, Lyons

1867 Directory of Lyons

1869-1870 Lyons Business Directory

1886-1887 Directory of the Village of Lyons, Town of Lyons
Part 1 - Surnames "A" through "E"
Part 2 - Surnames "F" through "Ma"
Part 3 - Surnames "Me" through "R"
Part 4 - Surnames "S" through "Z"

Property Owners of the Town of Lyons, 1891: added 5/17/12

1914 Farm Directory of Lyons

1895 History of Town of Lyons

Lyons, N.Y. 1911, Part 1: a short book about business and businessmen

Lyons, N.Y. 1911, Part 2: links to photos at end of book

Henry G. Tinsley's Memories of Lyons 1870-1888: link to another website

Index to "Grip's" Souvenir of Lyons, N.Y. & Vicinity - 1904

Photo Index to "Grip's" Souvenir of Lyons, N.Y. & Vicinity

Old Pictures of Lyons

Tidbits About Early Churches, Lyons, N.Y.

Historical Women Firsts of Wayne County

Ads For Local Businesses, 1921

Lyons NY Business Men's Banquet 1903

More Lyons Business Men's Banquets 1905-07

Lyons 1906 Grand Parada Opera Program

1941 Theatre Production at the American Legion, Lyons, N.Y.

New-Year's Day in Lyons 1881

Hocroft Golf Club ca 1900

Lyons, NY Civil War Battlefield Deaths

1919 Soldiers Welcome Home Reception

March 9, 1944 Lyons Republican Newspaper

1917 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 1

1917 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 2

1917 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 3

1917 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 4

1880 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 1

1880 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 2

1880 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 3

1880 Lyons Republican Newspaper Part 4

100th Anniversary Lyons 1st Lutheran Church

125th Anniversary of First Evangelical United Brethren Church of Lyons:

1854 Lighthall/Rundle Land Indenture

Early Medical Practice in Lyons, NY

1848 letter written by Seth Smith

Lyons Rural Cemetery
Part 1    Part 2    Part 3    Part 4    Part 5    Part 6    Part 7


Early Lyons NY School Ephemera

Early Schools and Teachers of Lyons, N.Y.

Catalog of Lyons Union School, 1845

Late 1800s Lyons Union School Newspaper Clippings

1904 Lyons Union School Banquet

1906 Lyons School District No. 7 Tax List

Photo of Lyons High 1913 Graduates

School Registers Districts 1 & 8, 1917-1918

Lyons Union School Cornerstone Program 1922

Contributors to Early 20th Century Lyons NY Church Cookbook

Other Lyons articles and cemetery listings are found throughout the site. Please use the search engine at top of left-hand menu bar.


VIDEO of Growing Up in Lyons, Part 1- link to another website that will open in a new window: added 4/8/15

VIDEO of Growing Up in Lyons, Part 2- link to another website that will open in a new window: added 4/8/15

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Created: 9/15/98
Last Revision: 4/8/15
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