On Saturday and Sunday, October 3 and 4, CHNA Historian James DeVinney will host a special “East Vs. West” tour along the Genesee River.
These “mini tours” start at 11 a.m. and leave from the Water Spirits sculpture on Exchange Boulevard.
Historian DeVinney will describe the Genesee River’s history from the Pre-Ice Age through Col. Nathaniel Rochester’s creation of a village on the original “One Hundred Acre Tract” of land he purchased in 1803 with his partners William Fitzhugh and Charles Carroll.
He foresaw economic opportunity in using the swift current to power mills, but he allowed eight years to pass before returning to this site to lay out his village of Rochesterville. By then a group of merchants from Canandaigua had already begun developing a 1,000 acre tract of land along the east side of the river by the lower falls. Their village of Carthage had numerous advantages over Rochester’s enterprise.
We might all be living today in a city called Carthage if two engineering marvels hadn’t intervened, one successful and one disastrous, to give Rochester the upper hand.
Cornhillers especially will want to learn this fascinating history and its relevance to the area later known as the Cornhill tract.