Phinney’s Calendar or Western Almanac

Almanacs were extremely popular books in the farming community, largely because of their weather predictions. Farmers would use these predictions to help plan the planting season.

Western View of Poughkeepsie, New York

The taverns that were visited most frequently were those that were near a major intersection on land or on water. Steamboat travel up and down the rivers, including the Hudson River, was important to the waterfront businesses. Barge transportation brought many people through central New York during the mid-nineteenth century.

Sempronius, New York

This map has been edited to show the location of the creamery in Sempronius (Cayuga County), New York.

Ripley, New York

In 1804, Alexander Cochran, an immigrant from Ireland, purchased the first track of land from the Holland Land Company in Ripley, New York, located in Chautauqua County on Lake Erie. He and his three brothers farmed for a living, and their families continued to farm the same land in Ripley for the next two hundred years.

In the mid-nineteenth century, the Cochrans were raising a variety of crops but seem to have focused primarily on sheep. This continued until 1875, when cattle, milking, and butter production became much more prominent. In 1982, the Cochrans were producing dairy products and keeping fields for hay. Today, the Cochrans are raising Holstein cows and have vineyards on their farm.