July 1993

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About this Issue

Note from the Editors

John Martin describes the flooding of the library of the Corning Museum of Glass in 1972, and all the work to save the water-damaged books and documents. At that time Dr. Martin was the Administrative Officer of the Corning Museum of Glass. His article first appeared in the Wilson Library Bulletin of Nov. 1975, and is reprinted here with permission. John Martin made revisions for this printing.

A. G. Hilbert's account of the Williamson Road is taken from a speech that he delivered in 1978. Mr. Hilbert died in September 1991. He was historian for the town of Elmira, staff historian and a member of the board of directors of the Chemung County Historical Society and a very popular lecturer. He wrote as a part of this talk: "After one of my talks in Hammondsport, I was approached by a man highly indignant because I had called the Germans who had helped build the road 'idlers, gamblers and dregs of the city.' I had quoted this from history books. He was descended from early Germans and resented the description. Further research disclosed that the second shipload of Saxon Germans landed at New York instead of Philadelphia. They were too late for use in helping to build the road. This group was sent up the Hudson and westward to Geneva. Winter caught them in the Penn Yan area and they were temporarily settled with the Quaker Friends of that area. These industrious people taught this group of Germans how to cope with frontier problems and how to farm. Another group of Germans, but this time from eastern Pennsylvania, settled in the southwestern corner of Steuben County. It was these groups that later drifted through the Genesee Country and, unlike their predecessors, became stalwart citizens of the area. If any of your genealogies refer you back to early German ancestry, you may point to them with pride rather than with shame."

Thomas D. Cornell contributes a fourth essay in his series on the Hammondsport Glen. Tom Cornell teaches at R.I.T.

Rev. L. Merrill Miller's Remembering Madam Thornton is another in our series of selections from The Centennial of Bath 1793-1893.

Bill Treichler describes a visit to Rose Hill Mansion.

Richard Palmer provides the third installment in his series about commercial sailing on the Finger Lakes. Mr. Palmer wrote about Roseland Park in Canandaigua in our December 1992 issue.

This issue concludes with chapter six of Warren Hunting Smith's The Misses Elliot of Geneva. Mr. Smith wrote also An Elegant but Salubrious Village, a history of Geneva.

Next Issue

Our August issue will contain an article by Herbert A. Wisbey, Jr. about the Dresden, New York, birthplace of Robert Ingersoll. August 11 is the 160th anniversary of Ingersoll's birth.

Also featured will be Warren Hunting Smith's story of the W. & T. Smith Nursery Company. The Geneva Historical Society has an exhibit in the Prouty-Chew House, 543 South Main St., Geneva, To Dress and Keep the Earth: The Nurseries and Nurserymen of Geneva, New York. The W. & T. Smith Nursery was one of these and at one time the largest wholesale nursery in the country.

Coinciding with the story of the Smith nursery will be Robert Koch's account of the apple in western New York.

There will also be another episode from Warren Smith's The Misses Elliot of Geneva, and another installment from Richard Palmer's series about commercial sailing on the lakes.

The August issue will contain the conclusion of John Martin's account of salvaging the water-soaked books of the Corning Museum of Glass library, and of A. G. Hilbert's history of the Williamson Road.

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