Living Near the River: A Detailed History of the River Hamlets of Guilford, NY


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The story of the river hamlets bordering on the Unadilla River takes us on a fascinating voyage into the past. Coming down the river from the north, we enter the town of Guilford and investigate the stories that make up the history of its five hamlets by the river. Each hamlet is somewhat different but in a strange way there are similarities.

Was a home in the northern hamlet part of the Underground Railroad and what was the story of the Latham’s Inn? Did the famous wool factory make uniforms for our Civil War soldiers? Do you know about the Rockwell Mansion?

In Mt Upton, where did the name come from? Historical articles tell about the beautiful but also strange Upton Castle across the river. Enter the largest cemetery in the town and learn how it’s graves have a way of uncovering the town’s history. As you look across the river from the cemetery, realize that you are looking at the ancient Hutted Knoll of the Oneida Indians.

As you read further, wonder about how similar, but yet different, the history is of the four hotels that lined the river bank. Learn about the great swamp, long gone, that blocked the building of the first road into the hamlet and how an old Indian trail high upon a ridge was the first primitive road that still exists!

At the east end of the town is the hamlet of East Guilford. Learn about the first settlement here by two brothers who were spies for George Washington. Read further about a story of the beautiful Indian Orchard Waterfalls and a strange entranceway found on the side of the high riverbank.

From old newspaper articles, vital records and other old histories a view of the past comes alive on the banks of the Unadilla River in Guilford. The book weaves a history of settlements that has stories of mystery and adventure from 1789 to the present. It is the story of those who chose to live and die by the river.