The Most Valuable And Productive Farms Section - In The Book:
The New Century Atlas Of Cayuga County, New York - 1904 - Page 121









20th FARM ON PAGE 121



MELWOOD, comprising sixty-five acres, owned by Samuel Searing. Postoffice address, Aurora, R. F. D., 28. It is located on the State Road running from Owasco Lake to Cayuga Lake. Its markets are Poplar Ridge, one mile, Aurora, four miles, and Auburn sixteen miles. The soil is adapted to the raising of hay, grain and products usual to this section, a special feature, however, is its fine dairy of graded Jerseys, the products of which are delivered at the Poplar Ridge Elgin Creamery, one mile east. The buildings are located back from the road and surrounded by evergreens and shade trees of different varieties, including rock maple, walnut, etc. It is considered one of the pleasant locations in the town of Ledyard. The fruits consist of apples, pears, peaches, plums, cherries and small fruit. This farm is part of a tract originally one mile square, settled by Quakers, John and Dinah Wood, in 1799. They erected a substantial log house, planted an orchard around it, and this home became the hospitable center of the neighborhood, where the new settlers were entertained. The frame house was built on the east part of the tract for a son, Jethro Wood, who invented the iron plow. John Wood sold to Peleg White, also a Quaker, who erected a house (now standing) in 1816, and sold to Simeon Laines in 1842. In 1843 it came into possession of his son-in-law, Amos Giles, who, during a residence of fifty-four years, added to the buildings, improved the land and planted many young trees, including fruit and sugar maples, and while so busily engaged in improving his farm he was also building a character for the strictest integrity, which has been an example to those who came after him. He was one of the early Abolitionists of this section, and later became a Republican and a prominent temperance man. He was also a champion of equal suffrage and ready to use his influence in every good work. In addition to his other farm work, he is known to have been one of the largest beekeepers in the County, from which fact the name of the present farm is derived. Samuel Searing came into possession of "Melwood" in 1897.  He is a native of Cayuga County, born in 1846. In 1875 he married Miss Amelia A. Giles, of Onondago (sic) County. Their family consists of a son and daughter, both residing at home. The farm has a western exposure, overlooking Cayuga Lake. Bee culture still continues to be a feature of this farm. The water supply is furnished by wells and a large cistern, for the use of the buildings and stock, and there are twelve acres of timber.

Transcribed by Sandie Gilliland  in August 2002
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