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Utica, New York (Hayward)

Gazetteer/Almanac

John Hayward, Gazetteer of the United States of America… (Philadelphia: James L. Gihon, 1854), 604.

Utica, N. Y. City and seat of justice of Oneida co. Situated on the S. bank of the Mohawk River, on the site of old Fort Schuyler. 93 miles W. by N. from Albany, and 232 E. from Buffalo.  Population in 1820, 2972; in 1830, 8323; in 1840, 12,782; in 1850, 17,642.  Utica has a pleasant location, on ground gradually ascending from the river, and commanding a fine prospect from its more elevated parts. It is well built, having many fine stores and large and elegant dwellings. The streets are laid out with a good degree of regularity, generally, but not always crossing each other at right angles. They are neat and spacious, some of them 100 feet wide, and well paved.  It contains a court house, offices for the clerks of the Supreme and United States' Courts, about 20 churches of the various denominations, an Exchange building, an academy, a museum, a Protestant and a Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum, and various other charitable institutions.  The New York State Lunatic Asylum, at Utica,is situated on somewhat elevated ground, about a mile W pf the city. It has fine buildings, with a farm of 160 acres attached. It contained about 500 patients in 1850. The country around Utica is fertile, and the city is the centre of an active and extensive trade.  Railroads, canals, and turnpikes radiate from it in all directions. The great Western Railroad, from Albany and Troy to Buffalo, and the greatErie Canal between the same points, pass through Utica.  The Chenango Canal also comes in here from Binghampton, which is on the Erie Railroad, and on the Susquehanna River. 96 miles to the S. E. The Erie Canal has been widened, where it passes through the city, to 70 feet, and made 7 feet deep, and presents a fine appearance from the substantial and beautiful bridges with which it is spanned.  A culvert has been constructed in the city from the canal to the river, at an expense of about $100,000. It is surrounded by one of the finest and richest agricultural districts in the union, and is a wealthy and flourishing place of business.  The first building erected within the limits of Utica was a mud fort, constructed during the old French war, and named Fort Schuyler. It occupied the portage, or carrying place between the Mohawk and Wood Creek, which discharge through Lake Oneida, into lake Ontario. In 1798 Utica took its present name, being incorporated as a village.  It was but an inconsiderable village until about the year 1800, when the location of the Seneca Turnpike, crossing the Mohawk at this point, operated to make it an important place of deposit and trade.  In 1817 it was taken from Whitestown, and received a separate incorporation as a town. It was incorporated as a city in 1832. It is divided into 6 wards, and is governed by a mayor and 12 aldermen.

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