TONAWANDA - was formed from Buffalo, April 16, 1836; and Grand Island was taken off in 1852. It lies in the N.W. part of the co., at the angle formed by the junction of Tonawanda Creek and Niagara River. Its surface is generally level. Eleven Mile Creek crosses the N. part of the town. The soil along Niagara River is clayey; in the interior it is sandy. Tonawanda, (p.v.,) incorp. Dec. 3, 1853, is situated on the Erie Canal, at the confluence of Niagara River and Tonawanda Creek. It has a good harbor,(1) and is an important station on the B. & N.F.R.R. It is the western terminus of the C. & N.F. branch of the N.Y.C.R.R. It contains 5 churches, a newspaper office, a bank, an elevator,(2) and several manufacturing establishments.(3) Pop. 1,257.(4) The first settlement was made in 1805.(5) There are 8 churches in town.(6)
(1)Large quantities of lumber are received at this port from Canada and the Western States. The quantity re-shipped by canal in 1857 was, of timber, 841,011 cubic feet; of sawed stuff, 4,815,441 ft.; and of wood, 16,007 cords.
(2)This elevator has a storage capacity of 250,000 bush., and facilities for elevating 2000 bush. per hour.
(3)3 sawmills, 3 shingle mills, a planing mill, and a furnace and machine shop.
(4)This is the pop. of that part of the village in Erie co. A part of the village is across the creek, in Niagara co.; and the pop. of this is not known.
(5)Alex. Logan, John King, and John Hersey settled in the town in 1805; Emanuel Winter, Jos. Haywood, Oliver Standard, John Cunningham, Josiah Guthrie, Ebenezer Coon, Thos. Honnan, and Joseph Hersey, in 1806; Henry Anguish, in 1808; and Frederick Buck, in 1809. Henry Anguish kept the first inn, in 1811, and Judge Wilkinson the first store, in 1823. The first mill was built by --- Osborne, in 1819.
(6)Disciples, Evang. Luth., M.E., R.C., and Wes. Meth. at Tonawanda Village, and Evang. Luth., M.E., and R.C. in other parts of the town.
J.H. French, Gazetteer of the State of New York (Syracuse, New York: R. Pearsall Smith, 1860), p. 293.