QUAKER SETTLEMENTS IN ERIE COUNTY, NEW YORK By Levinus K. Painter* Philadelphia Quakers passed through the Indian country along Cattaraugus Creek several times before 1800. Their objective was to visit among Friends in the vicinity of Pelham, Ontario. The first Quaker homesteaders had arrived at Pelham as early as 1782. In 1799 a monthly meeting was organized under the care of Philadelphia Yearly Meeting. Jacob Lindley and his companions had traveled through what is now Erie County on their way to Canada in 1797. The customary route from Philadelphia led over the mountains to Pittsburgh, thence up the Allegheny River and overland to Buffalo. Quaker travelers made it a practice to cultivate acquaintance with Indians along the way, and frequently they accepted Indian hospitality. These contacts helped to prepare the way for Phila- delphia Friends to open their mission for "the gradual civilization of the Indians" on the Allegheny Reservation in 1799. So far as records reveal, David Eddy and his sister Mary, from Danby, Vermont, were the first Quakers to take up permanent residence in what is now Erie County. The Holland Land Company had only recently completed the lot survey west of the Transit Line, running
Quaker History – Friends Historical Association
Published: Apr 4, 1966
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