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TOWNS OF Otto and East Otto

Photo Main St Otto
Main Street in Otto NY circa 1900 before the fire of 1904

Town History

The town of Otto was formed from Perrysburgh, on Jan 29, 1823. East Otto was taken off in 1854, a part of Perrysburgh in 1823, and a part of Ashford in 1835. Otto was named after Jacob S Otto, an agent of the Holland Land Company.

It lies in the northern part of the county, west of center. It surface is hilly and broken upland. It is drained by the Cattaraugus Creek, which forms its north border. On the west, it is bounded by the South Branch Creek.. Waverly, is in the south part and in 1862 contained a woolen factory and a gristmill. It had one church and a population of 277. Its first settlement, on Cattaraugus Creek was made by Joseph Adams, his son Bina, and Joseph Bartlett. Other early settlers included: Stephen, Isaac and Benjamin Ballard from Vermont . These men, along with Ephraim Brown settled in different parts of town in 1818.

David Elliott kept the first inn; Vine Plumb, the first store; and Stephen Rogers the first gristmill, in Waverly in 1828. In 1822, Isaac Sherman started the first store in Waverly.

East Otto was taken off Otto in 1854 . Its surface is hilly and broken. Its highest summit is Mt Tug, which is 300 feet above the valleys. Otto Corners is a little s.w. of the center or East Otto, and contained in 1862, 3 churches and 17 dwellings. It was first settled by Joseph Bates, on Lot 20, and Horace Wells, about 1816. The first religious meeting was held at the house of Tyler M Beach, in 1821.

Other early settlers included: Moses T Beach, Justice Bartholomew, Abraham Gibbs and Samuel Tuttle. Arzan (m) and Brittaina (f), were the first births; being twins born to the Justice Bartholomer family . Moses Leland and Britaina Wells were the first couple married, in 1823. Mrs. John Darling was the first settler to die, in Dec 1824. Hezekiah Scovel kept the first inn, near Otto Corners, in 1823. Vine Plumb had the first store, in 1824. The first sawmill was built by Moses T Beach in 1824.

1824 Property Tax Assessment Rolls for Otto

Another item of note is the book "A Boy and His Valley" written by Mr. Arnold Cook.  It contains good historical information about East Otto and the community of Brooklyn in which he was raised.  A google search should turn up some used copies for sale, or check your local library.R

Town of Otto Officials
Town Historian Town Clerk
Candace S. Broughton
9800 Forty Rd.
Cattaraugus, NY 14719
257-9336 (H)
Trisha Priest
Hours: Tues. & Thurs. 5PM-8PM, Sat. 9AM - noon
8583 Otto North Otto Road
Cattaraugus, NY  14719
716-257-3111 Ext: 02
Cell: 574-3004
From Cattaraugus County Directory date April 1, 2023
Town of East Otto Officials
Town Historian Town Clerk
Michelle Gogel
8917 Reed Hill Road
East Otto, New York 14729
257-3337 (H)
Deanna M. Bowen
Hours:  by appointment
9407 Bowen Rd.
East Otto, NY 14729
801-5382 (C)
From Cattaraugus County Directory date April 1, 2023

Surnames people are researching from this town

Otto and East Otto Cemeteries
Old Ross Farm Cemetery Forty Road and Wickham Rd unknown
North Otto Cemetery CR 2 between 40 & Ball Rd unknown
Otto Cemetery CR 12 in village of Otto, next to Otto Museum unknown
Lutheran Cemetery Cemetery Hill Rd, Otto unknown
Barber Cemetery Hebner Hill & Dake Hill Rd Town of Otto
East Otto Cemetery East Otto Road  
Cemetery Utley Road, East Otto  
Tifft Family Cemetery South of Springville Rd in a field west side of Bowen Rd  
Thanks to Lisa Newman for providing some additional information