2015 Open House Newsletter volume 1 number 1
Historic Huron – in Brief
The town of Huron was established on February 25, 1826, after separating from the town of Wolcott. Originally called Port Bay, the town was renamed Huron on March 17, 1834. Some stories tell that the town was named after the Huron Indians. Other stories tell that Huron was a good name because the word fit on a single line. Consisting of a little over 21,800 acres, the borders of Huron are: Lake Ontario to the north, the town of Wolcott to the east, a tiny section of Butler to the southeast, Rose in the south, and to the west, the border between the towns of Sodus and Huron known as the Old Pre-Emption Line – which extends from Charles Point on Sodus Bay to Washington D.C.
Drumlins are the most prominent terrain feature of the town. These drumlins progress to a lakeshore that rises to a series of bluffs – the largest of which, Chimney Bluffs, rises nearly 175 feet above the lake. Wetlands, bays, woodland, orchards and other farmland occupy the majority of the acreage of Huron.
The first settler in the town of Huron, Capt. William Helms, arrived in 1796 from Virginia with seventy slaves. Many of Huron’s early settlers arriving between 1807-1809 were from Massachusetts. In 1809, Elihu Spencer built the first mill at North Huron. Lummisville Road, originally known as Sloop Landing Road, was surveyed in 1810. Between 1810 and 1825, flour, apples, and pork were shipped from Sloop Landing to other ports on Lake Ontario. The first church, the Huron Presbyterian Church, was organized in 1813 and still has a strong membership today. There were several other denominations in Huron: Methodist, Methodist Episcopal, Catholic, and Shaker. The Shakers settled and developed a thriving community between 1826 and 1836 on the area of land located on Sodus Bay known as the Shaker Tract and Alasa Farms.
Eleven schoolhouses served the children of the small communities developing in Huron during the mid-1800s. A slave cabin on the Helm’s plantation near Resort was the first school in Huron. The school opened in 1809. From 1809 until 1935, the eleven small country schoolhouses were a central part of the fabric of this agricultural community.
The Town of Huron owns and maintains three unique historic buildings. Each of these buildings is in need of continued attention, care, and preservation. In June 2015 the Landmark Society of Western New York State visited the three buildings as well as the Huron Presbyterian Church to begin an assessment of the structures. The Landmark Society review is the first in a series of stages to work toward long term preservation and use for these buildings. We will provide additional information on this process as we continue along the path to this important historic preservation of these structures.
Old Town Hall – Huron Historic Department Office and Museum
The Old Town Hall, built circa 1849, was used for town business until 1979 when the New Town Hall located on Lummisville Road was opened.
The Huron Grange was organized in 1874. This building was erected in 1884. It is the home of the first Juvenile Grange in New York State.
Dayton Mills School House (corner of Slaght and North Huron Roads)
An old-fashioned one-room schoolhouse, present records state this former District #6 schoolhouse was built circa 1809. The schoolhouse is thought by some architectural historians to be post-Civil War. Research is being conducted to determine a more accurate date.
More Building and Site Info
In addition to the three historic buildings listed above, there are a significant number of other historic buildings and sites in Huron. A drive through this picturesque town will reveal old barns, farmhouses, and cobblestone houses. The Huron Evergreen Cemetery is an interesting place to explore old gravestones and familiar surnames of the Town of Huron going back into the early 1800’s. The 597-acre Chimney Bluffs State Park provides visitors several hiking trails, a picnic area, and spectacular views of Lake Ontario. Visit Huron’s winery and cider tasting houses. Dine at one of the fine restaurants located on Sodus Bay or Port Bay for terrific waterfront views. Rent a pontoon boat and see the sites of Sodus Bay from the water where you can experience a little more history as you think about the challenges and delights that met the early settlers in this area.
Historical donations are always welcome. Stories or other information relative to the donation are helpful and encouraged. Photos Journals Memorabilia Historic information of people, places, businesses, items, events Apple and other farming history and items
Other contributions to the historic preservation cause are also welcome. Cleaning Sorting Cataloging Transcribing Spring gardening at Old Town Hall
Monetary Donations Are Always Accepted!
Rosa Fox, Huron Historian email@example.com 315-594-8074
Sue Bacon, Deputy Historian
Facebook: Historic Huron, NY