Biography of Asahel Cook of Byron, NY

Asahel Cook, in the summer of 1809, started from his home in the town of Marcellus, Onondaga County, to go to the then "far West," to find for himself and family a new home. He came to Western New York, passing through what is now the city of Rochester, and selected a location in what is now the town of Byron. He bought a farm of 87 acres of the Holland Land Co., paying, or agreeing to pay, $4.50 per acre, the same price for which he could have purchased as he passed through Rochester, but considered that district too low and wet. There was only about one acre cleared on this lot, or on the territory of several hundred acres adjoining. He contracted, before returning home, with Elijah Loomis for the erection of a cheap building for a temporary home, and later for a more substantial log house. In the winter of 1810m with his wife and three sons, Elias, David, and Reuben, and two daughters, and all his effects. he moved by ox-team and sled to his new home, the eldest boy, Elias, being in his 11th year, and Reuben, the youngest, only six.

In the War of 1812 their nearness to the frontier, and their unprotected condition, rendered them naturally fearful and watchful, and when the report came that the Indians were on the "war path" and coming from Buffalo they were panic stricken, and with almost the entire neighborhood started for places of more security. He and his family, by oxteam and sled, went by Stafford, main road, as far as a hotel, between Le Roy and Caladonia, where they found soldiers quartered. They staid there until the next morning, when the good news came that they were in no immediate danger, and the third day found them again at home, there being about 18 inches of snow on the ground. Here, under these circumstances, in an almost unbroken forest, with few and scattered neighbors, he commenced the establishment of a Christian home, and the efforts toward a living or a fortune. Being a shoemaker by trade, as neighbors appeared he found employment and opportunity to earn something toward his support, and by industry and economy secured his home.

Gazetteer and Biographical Record
of Genesee County, New York
Edited by: F. W. Beers
J.W. Vose & Co., Publishers, Syracuse, N. Y. 1890



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