Livingston County Area Chamber of Commerce: Teaming with Excellence
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History of Livingston County

Livingston County was formed from Ontario and Genesee counties on February 23, 1821 and is named in honor of Chancellor Robert R. Livingston who helped write the Declaration of Independence.

After the Revolutionary War, people from New England, Maryland and Pennsylvania came to settle the Genesee River Valley bringing their knowledge of agriculture and methods of raising cattle and sheep. They built flour and grist mills on the numerous small streams and on the Genesee River. The most prominent of these settlers were the Wadsworths from Connecticut who came in 1790 to the Seneca Indian village of Big Tree, now Geneseo - the County Seat.

Growth of population came with the completion of the Genesee Valley Canal (1840-1872), with the expansion of railroads, and with health spas which reached their height of popularity in the 1850's.

The County is home to the State University of New York at Geneseo and the Genesee Valley Hunt, one of the oldest organized foxhunts in the United States.

Ideally located in western New York, Livingston County has some of the most valuable land in the state. Always known for its prolific crops, agriculture is still the main industry, producing large quantities of wheat, potatoes and dairy products. Salt has been an important industry for over 100 years and continues today with the new American Rock Salt mine.

Livingston County has been home to many prominent persons, among them two presidents - Millard Fillmore and Chester Arthur, Revolutionary War patriot Daniel Shays, and pioneer Nathaniel Rochester. Clara Barton organized the First Chapter of the American Red Cross in 1881 in Dansville, and native son Francis Bellamy authored the Pledge of Allegiance in 1892.

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Livingston County Area Chamber of Commerce
4635 Millennium Drive
Geneseo, NY 14454
Phone: (585) 243-2222

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