The Town of Middlefield


Image and text from Otsego county New York Geographical and Historical
by Edwin F Bacon, Ph B. 1902 Oneonta NY

Page 39. MIDDLEFIELD. Area 37,456 Acres. Population 2,100.

Middlefield is the largest township in the county. It was set off from
Cherry Valley in 1797. The surface is hilly, the summits being 400 to
500 feet above the valleys. It is well watered by the Cherry Valley and
Red creeks, which flow into the Susquehanna.

The first settlement was made at Newtown-Martin, now Middlefield
(locally Clarksville) about 1760; but during the Indian wars of the
Revolution the place was exposed to great danger, and all the more so on
account of the patriotic spirit that sent its best men to the
Continental army. The town was, in the end, completely depopulated, but
at the close of the war its fertile lands were rapidly taken up by old
and new settlers, among whom were William Cook, the four McCollum
brothers, Reuben Beals, Bernard Temple, Gardner Blair, Levi H. Pierce,
John Parshall, David Anderson, Benjamin Gilbert, James Bradley, Capt.
Thomas Ransom and Major Jothan Ames.

VILLAGES: There are three villages in this township, viz.: Middlefield
(population 243), Middlefield Center (population 108), and Phoenix Mills
(population 150). Lentsville is a rural postoffice. Bowerstown is a
hamlet (population 7), with postoffice at Cooperstown. Westville is
partly in Middlefield, with postoffice and churches in Westford. The
"Index Knitting Mills" at Phoenix Mills, employ (including branch at
Hope factory) about 400 hands.

The County Poor House and Farm are situated in this township, on the
railroad, three miles south of Cooperstown.

SCHOOLS: Number of districts 19. Teachers 18. Children of school age
322. The village schools are graded and efficiently conducted.

CHURCHES: There are three churches in this township, viz.: At
Middlefield, Baptist and Methodist; at Middlefield Center, Presbyterian.

Transcribed by Karen Flanders Eddy.

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