Fall 1998

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A Schooner on Crooked Lake

contributed by

Richard F. Palmer

This very early advertisement dated Dec. 22, 1808, reflects the work of an enterprising businessman by the name of George McClure, and appeared in the Geneva Gazette on June 21, 1809. At the time, Mr. McClure built the schooner Sally near what is now Hammondsport, to transport wheat and other commodities between there and Penn Yan. "I advertised the schooner Sally as a regular trader on Crooked Lake," he said. McClure built storehouses at each end of the lake, the entire enterprise having cost him $1400. He said, "The whole, as it turned out, was a total loss, as the lake was frozen over at the time I most wanted to use it. The farmers did not carry their wheat to market before winter. "

From History of the Settlement of Steuben County, N. Y. by Guy H. McMaster, Bath, N. Y. 1853, pp. 94, 101.

Geneva Gazette, June 21, 1809


THE subscriber informs his Customers and the Farmers generally of Ontario county, that he has just received from Philadelphia a fresh supply of

Dry Good, Groceries,

Crockery, Ironmongery, &c.

Which he will open at his STORE, in the town of SNELL about the 28th inst. This, together with his stock on hand, will make a large and complete assortment, which he will sell at reduced prices for prompt payment. Wheat, Rye, Pork, Butter, and even CASH will not be refused in payment. He will also open at the same time at his Mills, a general assortment, on the same terms.

Now running on Crooked Lake, Schooner SALLY, of 30 tons burthen, intended as a regular trader on said Lake, and built by the subscriber for his accommodation and the Merchants and Farmers of Ontario:

Charges for transportation up or down the Lake will be as follows, viz.

Wheat or other grain per Bushel, 6d.

Flour per Barrel, 2s. -And other kinds of loading in proportion. One third will be discounted from the above prices to such as will furnish a full load.

The neighboring Merchants of Ontario will find it much to their advantage to transport their produce to market by the Crooked Lake and Bath to Baltimore, as the freight for a barrel of flour in the spring season will not exceed one dollar and twenty cents from Waggoners Mills to the latter place. There is now a convenient Ware-House at the head of the Lake, and others will be erected at the foot and at Mr. Biddoe's, on the north fork, early in the spring.

For Freight or Passage, apply to George W. Tayler, in Snell, Lazarus Hammond, head of the Lake, or to the subscriber.

George M'clure.

Cold Spring Mills, Dec 22, 1808.

1998, Richard Palmer
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