Geneva, New York

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Geneva, New York
Skyline of Geneva, New York
Geneva, New York is located in New York
Geneva, New York
Geneva, New York
Location within the state of New York
Coordinates: 42°52′44″N 76°59′35″W / 42.87889°N 76.99306°W / 42.87889; -76.99306Coordinates: 42°52′44″N 76°59′35″W / 42.87889°N 76.99306°W / 42.87889; -76.99306
Country United States
State New York
County Ontario, Seneca
 • Type Council-Manager
 • Mayor

Ronald L. Alcock

 • City Manager Mathew D.Horn
 • City Council
Population (2010)[1]
 • Total 13,261
ZIP code 14456
Area code(s) 315
FIPS code 36-28640
GNIS feature ID 0978993

Geneva is a city in Ontario and Seneca counties in the U.S. state of New York. All land portions of the city are within Ontario County; the water portions are in Seneca County. The population was 13,261 at the 2010 census.[1] Some claim it is named after the city and canton of Geneva in Switzerland.[2] Others believe the name came from confusion over the letters in the word "Seneca" written in cursive.[citation needed] Ironically, though its own origin is unclear, the New York city is known to be the eponym of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.

The city is surrounded by the town of Geneva. The city says it is the "Lake Trout Capital of the World."[3]


The site was originally the Seneca Native American village of Kanadasaga. It became a strongpoint after being fortified by the British against the French and later against the Americans. The village was abandoned following its destruction by the punitive Sullivan Expedition of 1779, but resettled by Europeans around 1793 as a town developed by the Pulteney Association.

At the conclusion of the Revolutionary War, Lt. Col. Seth Reed, who had fought at Bunker Hill, moved from Massachusetts into Ontario County, where by trade with the Indians he became owner of a tract of land eighteen miles in extent. This occurred in 1787, while Hannah stayed in Uxbridge, Massachusetts with the family.[4] The text states that "Seth Read moved, his wife Hannah and their family to Geneva, Ontario County, New York in the winter of 1790".[5]

The settlement at Geneva was not yet permanent because of indigenous Seneca Indian attacks, and Seth Read then moved his family to Erie, Pennsylvania becoming the earliest European settlers there. The text states that, Finally, he sold this property and brought his wife and two sons (James Manning and Charles John) to the present site of Erie, arriving on the 17th of June, 1795.[6]

The "Village of Geneva" was incorporated in 1806, 1812, and 1871, formally separating it from the surrounding area of Geneva Town. Later the village became a city.


The town is at the two-mile wide northern outlet of Seneca Lake a lake that spans 34 miles south to Watkins Glen. Geneva is located in the Finger Lakes region, the largest wine-producing area in New York State. The Cayuga-Seneca Canal contains the watershed of Keuka Lake and flows north through Geneva, connecting to the Erie Canal, completed in 1825.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.8 square miles (15.2 km²). 4.3 square miles (11.0 km²) of it is land and 1.6 square miles (4.1 km²) of it (27.18%) is water.

Geneva on east-west US Route 20 conjoined with New York State Route 5. New York State Route 14 is a north-south highway through the city. It is fairly equidistant from Rochester, New York and Syracuse, New York, each being about 45 miles away.[7][dead link]


Skyline of Geneva from the shoreline of Seneca Lake


Geneva uses a mayor-council form of government. The mayor is elected at large. The council consists of eight members. Six are elected from one of six wards. The other two are elected at large. Ronald L. Alcock is the current Mayor of the City of Geneva, winning the seat after having served as councilor-at-large for a 4-year term immediately preceding the November 2011 city-wide election.


Private schools[edit]

  • Children's Hours School is a private school[8] for toddlers through first grade.[9] Its enrollment is about 27 students.[10] The current director is Ms. Mary Bohle.[8]
  • DeSales High School (1912-2012) was a Roman Catholic high school that taught Grades 9-12 in Geneva.[12] On July 31, 2012, the board of directors announced its decision to close the high school for the 2012-2013 school year because of declining enrollment and insufficient funds to continue operating.[13]
  • Rose Academy is a school of Experiential Learning for grades 1-5. The curriculum includes GLOBAL Science, Reading A-Z Program, Touch Point Math, Art, Music, Physical Education. It was founded by Dr. Lorraine Williams.

Public schools[edit]

The Geneva City School District operates the local public primary and secondary schools. The district has two elementary schools, North Street School[14] (3rd-5th)[citation needed] and West Street School[14] (K-2)[citation needed]. The district's secondary schools are Geneva Middle School and Geneva High School.[14]

Colleges and universities[edit]


As of the census of 2000, there were 13,617 people, 5,014 households, and 2,933 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,199.5 inhabitants per square mile (1,234.2/km²). There were 5,564 housing units at an average density of 1,307.4 per square mile (504.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.52% White, 10.22% African American, 0.25% Native American, 1.23% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 3.39% from other races, and 3.34% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.50% of the population.[1]

There were 5,014 households out of which 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.6% were married couples living together, 15.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.5% were non-families. 34.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 3.03.[1]

In the city the population was spread out with 23.2% under the age of 18, 18.9% from 18 to 24, 24.3% from 25 to 44, 18.1% from 45 to 64, and 15.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 87.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.5 males.[1]

The median income for a household in the city was $31,600, and the median income for a family was $41,224. Males had a median income of $31,315 versus $23,054 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,609. About 13.7% of families and 17.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.2% of those under age 18 and 7.8% of those age 65 or over.[1]


One of the major industries in and around Geneva is winemaking. The area is becoming increasingly popular for agritourism: there are over 100 wineries in the Finger Lakes Region, and the Seneca Lake wine trail provides easy access to many of these from Geneva. As Geneva grows as a tourist destination so do the number of rooms available.

Notable natives and residents[edit]

  • Luther Sage "Yellowstone" Kelly. Sioux War Indian scout, western hunter and adventurer, and government administrator. See The Life of Yellowstone Kelly by Jerry Keenan (2006), University of New Mexico Press. - Born in Geneva on July 27, 1849. Buried in Billings, Montana at Kelly Mountain. Luther Kelly.[16]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 136. 
  3. ^ Faber, Harold (9/12/1993). "The World Capital of Whatever". New York Times. Retrieved 11-08-2008. 
  4. ^ Buford, Mary Hunter (1895). Seth Read, Lieut.-Col.Continental Army; Pioneer at Geneva, New York, 1787, and at Erie, Penn., June, 1795. His Ancestors and Descendants.. Boston, Mass. pp. 167 Pages on CD in PDF Format. 
  5. ^ Turner, Eramus (1909). Pioneer History of the Holland Purchase of Western New York. Volume II. p. 319. 
  6. ^ "PA Biographies; William Ward Reed". Retrieved 2007-09-29. 
  7. ^ "The page cannot be found". 
  8. ^ a b "NYS Admin Listing". NYSED. Retrieved 2010-06-14. "Record Type: Non-Public[...] Chief School Officer: DIRECTOR - MARY M. BOHLE" 
  9. ^ "Children's Hours School". Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  10. ^ "Moodie's Children's Hours School Home Page". 
  11. ^ a b "NYS Admin Listing". NYSED. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  12. ^ "Desales High School - Geneva, New York - NY - school overview". GreatSchools Inc. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ a b c "Schools". Geneva City Schools. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  15. ^ "Geneva Campus Center : Finger Lakes". Finger Lakes Community College. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  16. ^ "Luther Kelly". Wikipedia.accessdate=2013-12-03. 
  17. ^ "Travis McCoy". Wikipedia. Retrieved 2010-07-16. 
  18. ^ Brooke, James (2004-05-12). "LETTER FROM ASIA; Foreigners Try to Melt an Inhospitable Japanese City". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-02-03. 
  19. ^ a b c Emmons, Thayles (1982). "The Story of Geneva". The Finger Lakes Times. 
  20. ^ Murphy, Jessica. "Arthur Dove (1880–1946)". The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Retrieved 2008-12-24. 
  21. ^ Crofut, Rachel (2008-12-08). "Gym Class drummer donates set to city school". Finger Lakes Times. 
  22. ^ "Jazz Giants - Mike Hashim". Roberto's Winds Inc. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^ "Obituary 1 -- No Title". The New York Times. 1860-01-14. 
  26. ^ Knight, Michael Muhammad (2009). Impossible Man. 
  27. ^ "Christine Lavin". Tidewater Friends of Folk Music. Retrieved 2008-12-24. 
  28. ^
  29. ^ "Ontario County NY Obituaries". Ontario County NYGenWeb, et al. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  30. ^

External links[edit]