In 1988 the popular LEGACY published issue #4." It was devoted almost completely to the village of Van Hornesville, Town of Stark, in the southeastern corner of Herkimer County."

Ronald A. Smith and his mother Mildred Shaul Smith put their collection of pictures and text together and created a publication of their hometown. I was very fortunate, to say the least, to have Ron give to me as a gift a copy of this publication, which sold out over 1,100 copies. After a lengthly conversation Ron and I thought it would be wonderful if "we" could share this gift of so much invaluable information with everyone. What better way than online, on the Herkimer/Montgomery Website. It is with his permission and the permission of the Herkimer County Historical Society, I dedicate in the memory of Mildred Shaul Smith, excerpts of A Walk through The Village.

"At various times in the life of the village you would have encountered here a wagon shop, furniture repairers, a lawyer's offfice, a country store....Then, a farm with a view, a hotel and post office, a residence...another store and a Grange Hall. There were a metal shop, horse barns and another hotel. A school was built early on.....and just across the road were a bandstand and playground, and nearby and ice cream parlor. Next were a peaceful millpond, a stately home, a classic church...and, in the future a beautiful school. In one location were a store, a cigar factory, a church. Near the site of a 1793 feed mill a scrubbby calf pasture became a park... and substantial homes appeared. And ancient houses were restored and occupied."

I hope you all enjoy this as much as I did.

Carol Perry, Town of Stark Editor
December 1999

A Walk through The Village

Scenes of Yesterday and Today in The Valley of The Otsquago

Bremon Mill

This cotton mill (Map location 1) was built in 1836 by one Elias Bremon and continued in operation until 1875. It was situated on the north side of the Chyle Road about half way between the Chyle's present intersection with NYS Route 80 and the State Fish Hatchery. Power to drive the mill's 900 spindles came from water and the water came from a millpond a few hundred feet south on the other side of the Chyle Road. In dry times the millpond was fed by wooden aqueduct from Summit Lake, a few miles south. This may have given rise to the legend that Summit Lake flows north to Mohawk ____ no longer true. If ever ____ as well as south to Ostego Lake and the Susquehanna. The millpond was contaminated by a dam, the remains of which can be seen today just to the right of southbound Route 80. It was breached in the flood of 1877. The mill was torn down in 1923 and some of its stones were used to build a vault in the Van Hornesville Cemetary.

William Mabie

Employees of the cotton mill were summoned to work by the tolling of this bell, which hung in the tower of the structure. The bell's custodian pictured here is William Mabie, a former employee at the mill. He was 84 when this photo was taken in 1931.

All material found are copyright © 1999 by Ronald and Mildred Shaul Smith. Any material found not attributed to a specific author are the property of Ronald A. Smith. The material as presented may not appear in any other work where a fee is charged for that material in whole or in part. The purpose of this rule is to make sure that the material remains free.

Continue On To Next Page

Back to The Town of Stark Page

Back to Herkimer/Montgomery Counties GenWeb

Back to New York State GenWeb

Created 11/19/99:
Copyright © 1999 Ronald Smith / Mildred Shaul Smith/ Carol Perry/ Martha S. Magill
All Rights Reserved.