Village of Penn Yan and its Records
Penn Yan is the county seat and
largest settlement in Yates County. It was first settled about 1791
and grew swiftly because of its excellent millseat and its position
on two important stage routes. In 1833, the same year the village was
incorporated, the Crooked Lake Canal was opened for navigation; it connected
the agriculturally rich Keuka Lake basin with Seneca Lake, and thence
to the entire Erie Canal system, so nearly all goods flowing out of
and into this part of New York went through Penn Yan. The first railroad
was built in 1850. The village became a manufacturing center as well
as the transshipping point for the immense wheat harvests of the middle
The village's unique name dates to
about 1808 and derives from the fact that the first settlers were about
equally from Pennsylvania and New England; after long discussion a
compromise was found between the Pennsylvanians and the Yankees to name
the place partially after both groups.
The village has a very large
volume of records, most of which are reasonably accessible. Much
historical material is also held by the Yates County Genealogical &
Historical Society at 200 Main Street.
The village office is at 3 Maiden
Lane, a one-way street with traffic flow from east to west; easiest
access is from Main Street.
Records on Microfilm
The following series have been microfilmed. The film is available at the Yates County Historian's
office, at the village office and at the New York State Library in Albany.
1833 - 1992
VITAL RECORDS REGISTERS
Births, deaths and marriages 1883-1913 [INDEX]; Births and deaths 1913-93
REFERENCE DEED RECORDS
Benham Street - east side of Main Street between Seneca and Clinton Streets; West side of Main Street
between Chapel Street and Corporation Line - Water Street; Grantors Ayers - Youngs; Grantor Wagener
1841-1876 (missing 1842-3, 1848-9, 1855, 1857-70); 1877-1886 (missing 1885) [INDEX]