Aurora in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway
—West Falls Dam Site and Veterans Memorial —
Connecting the Town. Aurora, as it is today, would not have existed in the same form had it not been for the presence of Cazenovia Creek. The branches of Cazenovia Creek connect the Village of East Aurora to the unique rural hamlets throughout the Town, including West Falls, Griffins Mills, and Jewettville, and South Wales in the Town of Wales. The creek and its tributaries, known for their beauty today, served a vital role in the early days of Aurora, providing power for the lumber, grain and woolen mills that electrified the community's economy. You can find several of the hamlets mentioned above on the map on the right.
Aurora's beauty was appreciated long before the first foreign settlers came to the area in 1804. A handful of Native American villages are known to have been in place here as late as the 1500s and 1600s.
Covered wooden bridges, including this one near Griffins Mills, once took travelers over the steep embankments of Cazenovia Creek.
A Source of Recreation. Cazenovia Creek, named for Holland Land Company agent Theophilus Cazenov, has provided unique recreational opportunities for centuries. Boating and canoeing were popular
Pleasure boats and canoes entertained visitors at Donner's Creekside Park, which was located at the southern edge of the Village of East Aurora.
Covered wooden bridges once brought travelers safely across the tall ravines. At this location, along the west branch of Cazenovia Creek, was once an iron bridge. Legend has it that West Falls children of yesteryear would pretend the creek was the Niagara River, with one side being the United States and the other being Canada.
Natural Beauty Remains. The hamlets along this section of the WNY Southtowns Scenic Byway developed as a direct result of the creek. Jewettville was once home to brickyards. Several mills were established in Griffin Mills. The Presbyterian Church there, which still stands today, served as a stop on the Underground Railroad and played a major role in the Abolitionist Movement.
While the mills that once dotted it are gone, the beauty of Cazenovia Creek remains, the sound of waterfalls can still be heard at several points along the path of Cazenovia Creek, and the banks light up with color during fall
Cazenovia Creek played a significant role in the settlement of this spot in the hamlet of West Falls, where a steel bridge once crossed the scenic waterway.
The Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway is a 70 mile route encompassing five towns and three villages within Erie County, New York. For a listing of points of interest signs along the byway go to www.wnyssb.org .
Erected by Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway.
Location. 42° 42.12′ N, 78° 40.93′ W. Marker is in Aurora, New York, in Erie County. Marker is at the intersection of Davis Road (New York State Route 240) and Bridge Street, on the left when traveling south on Davis Road. Touch for map. Marker is in the hamlet of West Falls. Marker is in this post office area: West Falls NY 14170, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Honor Roll (a few steps from this marker); Dedicated to Those Who Served (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Aurora (approx. 2.8 miles away); Erie County (approx. 3˝ miles away); Colden United Methodist Church (approx. 4 miles away); Site of First Post Office in Present Orchard Park Township (approx. 4 miles away); Buffum Inn (approx. 4 miles away); Buffum Homestead (approx. 4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Aurora.
More about this marker. The tiny Veterans Park is to the immediate left of the marker.
Also see . . . Western New York Southtowns Scenic Byway. (Submitted on June 7, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.)
Categories. • Bridges & Viaducts • Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 7, 2017. This page originally submitted on June 7, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 82 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 7, 2017, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.