Initially populated by railroad workers in 1849 and receiving its first train depot, telegraph office and postmaster in 1851, Cattaraugus Village is proud of it's past as being an important regional center of innovation and commerce. Please read our exciting history and be amazed!
The Historic Cattaraugus Corporation
The Historic Cattaraugus Corporation (HCC) was created by twelve Western New York citizens who firmly believe that in preserving the historic assets of the region, jobs will be created. The Directors were from three Western New York counties who looked upon this incorporation as a regional project whose successful mission would be exemplary. Financial support for the creation of this corporation was provided by Miss May C. Carroll and Bank of Cattaraugus, the oldest Bank in Western New York State, and one of the oldest in the country.
Using the Historic Village of Cattaraugus in Cattaraugus County, New York as a demonstration project, the Directors of the HCC intend to create a series of educational environments that will result in tourism due to the celebration of the rich local Village history. That history includes the successful operation of numerous businesses and trades that demonstrated how a fledgling company town became self sufficient and prosperous in the 1849 to WW I time frame. A revival of certain of those businesses and trades in an organized manner would recreate the unique environment where those businesses actually existed in the first place. Unlike other living history projects, the HCC intends for tradesmen to be productive for their own profit and to teach their crafts using an apprentice system.
The downtown section of the Village of Cattaraugus is small and compact. Its 19 architecturally significant buildings have each been placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The HCC firmly believes that urban and community centers need preservation. When a Village sprawls it is more subject to failure and loss of identity. The position of the HCC is to step forward when private citizens either are unable or unwilling to maintain and improve historic properties of significance. The HCC owns several historic buildings in downtown Cattaraugus Village. All properties owned by the HCC were donated by citizens who believed in our commitment to historic preservation. Among the Corporation assets are: the 1890 Crawford Hotel, the 1894 Jewell Hotel, the 1915 Ford Dealership Building , the 1888 Clock Shop and Jewelry Store, and the 1909 Palace Theatre. We also have been recently donated the very site (One Main Street) that Theodore Roosevelt delivered his famous speech from, and was the "PATCH" written about in our History pages. Through various grants, most notably from the Federal Home Loan Bank, the Jewell Hotel has undergone a transformation into one commercial space and seven low income housing units.
The HCC was instrumental in the formation of the American Museum of Cutlery in 2005, and provides facilities for the museum, library, and workshop. This museum is unique in the Western Hemisphere. The HCC also administers several individual scholarship funds in the names of local historic figures.
The Historic Cattaraugus Corporation, incorporated under the laws of the New York State Education Department, is a 501 © 3, and is registered with the New York State Attorney General's Charities Bureau. Stop being a bystander to history, folks! Funds are needed to maintain these properties and many times, repair structural deficiencies. Make a significant difference in our nation's history. With your help this historic restatement and renewal impetus just might be contagious.
All contributions to the HCC are tax deductible.
COMMUNITY ASSETS LOCATED IN OUR SMALL AND COMPACT BUSINESS DISTRICT INCLUDE:
Crawford House Hotel
One jewel of Historic Cattaraugus is the 1890 Crawford House Hotel. This building's reuse is currently a high priority and a key to Cattaraugus Village's community renewal. It's location in the center of town is important to our mission of historic preservation translating into job creation, educational opportunities, and tourism.
Cattaraugus Palace Theatre
The Cattaraugus Palace Theatre survives today and was constructed in 1909. For decades this was the center of theatrical and movie entertainment for a vast region of Cattaraugus County. It had a seating capacity of over 300, a large stage, 2 story side stage, an orchestra pit and balcony. This theatre's restoration would return a needed venue for arts and entertainment to the region. It adjoins a 1915 Ford dealership building still in its original condition.