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History and Culture

Click for larger maps.The Owasco Lake watershed is made up of parts of three counties, fifteen towns, and two villages.  The watershed has a rich history of agriculture and was the childhood home of Millard Fillmore, the 13th president of the United States and John D. Rockefeller, industrialist and philanthropist.

Over half of the watershed is covered by agricultural lands which consist mostly of hay, corn, wheat, and soy beans.  With dozens of dairy farms as well, the farming industry is thriving throughout the watershed.  Several education and outreach programs are working hard to ensure that watershed-friendly farming practices are used.

The watershed boasts several attractions as well.  New Hope Mills, Grismore’s U-Pick produce farm, and Fillmore Glen State Park to name a few.

Historical aerial photographs of the watershed may be viewed at the Cornell University Historical Collection of New York Aerial Photographs.  These black and white photographss were captured in 1938, 1954, and 1963.

Historic Owasco Lake news articles may be found at the Fulton History web site.  Just type in “Owasco Lake” in the left hand panel and click on the search button.

Historic maps and photographs can be found at William Hecht’s Pictures of Cayuga County and the Finger Lakes page.