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Grand Island in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Grover Cleveland & Grand Island / Lewis F. Allen & Western New York

 
 
Grover Cleveland & Grand Island/Lewis F. Allen & Western New York Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Anton Schwarzmueller, January 27, 2017
1. Grover Cleveland & Grand Island/Lewis F. Allen & Western New York Marker
Inscription.  
Grover Cleveland & Grand Island
Young Grover Cleveland, inspired by his uncle Lewis F. Allen's experimental work with cattle, visited Allentown Farm and stayed to maintain the farm records. Cleveland eventually worked as an apprentice in a Buffalo law office and later made Buffalo his home. Allen introduced Cleveland to many influential people who furthered his legal and political careers.

This photograph is of a copy of a portrait of Grover Cleveland painted by Eastman Johnson in 1884. Courtesy of Philipse Manor Hall State Historic Site, Yonkers, New York.

1959 - Admitted to the New York State Bar
1863 - Appointed assistant district attorney of Erie County
1871 - Elected Erie County sheriff
1881 - Elected mayor of Buffalo
1882 - Elected governor of New York State
1885 - Became the 22nd President of the United States

As a young man, Grover Cleveland was one of 17 charter members of the Jolly Reefers, a Grand Island sportsmen's club. This 1934 photograph shows the Beaver Island Club, constructed by the Jolly Reefers on Beaver Island. by the 1870s, the Jolly Reefers had disbanded, and
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Charles Marshall, a charter member of the club, purchased the clubhouse. Courtesy of the Grand Island Historical Society.

Lewis F. Allen & Western New York
Lewis F. Allen was a businessman prominent in the development of Grand Island and the city of Buffalo. In 1834, Allen and other agents for the East Boston Timber Company purchased land on Grand Island where white oaks were harvested to build clipper ships. After most of the island's oaks had been cut and the sawmill closed, Allen bought about 658 acres and established the Allentown Farm (1851-1867), which became one of the country's first experimental fams and Western New York's largest at the time.

Lewis F. Allen opened The Falconwood Club (right), a public resort he built and named for the birds that nested in the area. Although Allen sold the resort in 1865, it continued to serve Buffalo's prominent families until destroyed by fire in the 1920s. Courtesy of the Grand Island Historical Society.

Allen helped establish some of Grand Island's finest farms and developed many of the island's resort clubs. He wrote papers for agricultural and political journals and compiled and edited books on the history and improvement of cattle and farm management. He also brought the first peach tree and northern spy apples to Grand Island and Western New York.

Lewis F. Allen was one of the original
Grover Cleveland & Grand Island/Lewis F. Allen & Western New York Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Anton Schwarzmueller, January 27, 2017
2. Grover Cleveland & Grand Island/Lewis F. Allen & Western New York Marker
Marker on the path to the River Lea house.
founders on the Erie County Agricultural Society, which sponsored the Erie County Fair, first held in Buffalo in 1841 and later moved to Hamburg. Renamed "America's Fair," it is one of the nation's largest county fairs. Courtesy of the Erie County Agricultural Society, Hamburg, New York.

Lewis F. Allen was an abolitionist. He believed that the western territories should enter the Union as Free States. He was also an outspoken opponent of the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850. In spite of his many accomplishments as a businessman, Allen preferred to be known as a farmer. Image from A Descriptive Work of Erie County, 1898.

Lewis F. Allen's Accomplishments:
• Served as president of the newly formed Buffalo Horticultural Society
• Served on First Board of Health in Erie County
• Served in the New York State Legislature
• Founder of the first City Cemetery Association at Forest Lawn Cemetery
• Served as president of the New York State Agricultural Society
• Founder of the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society

The Buffalo Historic District, "Allentown," is named for Lewis F. Allen. The "Allentown Art Festival," an annual event designated by the Library of Congress as a local legacy, is held on "Allen Street," a street that was once a "cow path" on Allen's Buffalo farm property. Lewis Allen also planted many fruit trees along the city
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streets. Courtesy of The Allentown Village Association, INC.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AgricultureEntertainment. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #22 and #24 Grover Cleveland series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1884.
 
Location. 42° 57.689′ N, 78° 56.394′ W. Marker is on Grand Island, New York, in Erie County. Marker can be reached from Park Road Loop Area 3. Marker is off of the park road loop beyond area 3 in Beaver Island State Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Grand Island NY 14072, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Allenton Farm/Creating Beaver Island State Park (a few steps from this marker); A Home for Fish (approx. 0.2 miles away); Management (approx. 0.2 miles away); Recovery (approx. 0.2 miles away); Did You Ever Wonder What It Takes to Restore an Island? (approx. 0.2 miles away); Island Life (approx. 0.2 miles away); Strawberry Island (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Strawberry Island (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Grand Island.
 
Also see . . .
1. Beaver Island - New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation. (Submitted on February 2, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.)
2. Lewis F. Allen - Wikipedia. (Submitted on February 2, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 1, 2020. It was originally submitted on February 2, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 505 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on February 2, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.

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Mar. 1, 2024