Valley Historical Society meets for party and program

SINCLAIRVILLE – The Valley Historical Society met recently in the South Stockton Wayside Chapel Fellowship Hall for a Christmas dinner and program. President Albert Olmstead welcomed all, and led the group in Lord’s Prayer and the pledge of allegiance. Members Elaine Palmer-Titus and Linda Parmenter decorated the tables for the dinner.

The program consisted of members speaking about recent research projects.

Susan Washington Sipos of Cassadaga, talked about the research on the Gross family from Dunkirk.

The Gross family was involved with the Brooks Locomotive Company of Dunkirk, and had a large home on Central Avenue near Seventh Street.

The family donated the land for Camp Gross, just north of the Cassadaga Village, and a large sum of money for the construction of buildings.

The family is all gone now, but their legend lives on.

Sipos talked about the Gross family history and showed a small wooden cabin which her father, the late Jack Washington built for the family’s mantle for Christmas time. The cabin is fragile, being well over 70 years old. Mrs. Sipos’s grandfather, the late John Thomas Washington, who lived to be nearly 104, was the Gross family gardener and chauffeur. Her father and uncles also worked for the Gross family.

The Valley Historical Society will not meet during the winter months. It will hold its first meeting in 2014 on the first Tuesday of April, which will be a maple sugar party.

New members are always welcome. For more information on the Valley Historical Society, write to P.O. Box 1045, Sinclairville, NY 14782.

The Valley Historical Society is the official historical society for the Cassadaga Valley area. It was formed in 1977 by the late John and Ruth Smith who saw the need to preserve the history of the valley.