Lancaster, New York
The Warren Hull House, located at the intersection of Genesee St., and Pavement Rd. in the Town of Lancaster. It is the oldest surviving stone structure in Erie County, built in 1810.
|Elevation||712 ft (217 m)|
|Area||37.9 sq mi (98.2 km2)|
|- land||37.8 sq mi (98 km2)|
|- water||0.1 sq mi (0 km2), 0.26%|
|Town Supervisor||Dino Fudoli (R)|
|- summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|ZIP code||14086 14043|
|GNIS feature ID||0955014|
Lancaster is a town in Erie County, New York, USA. As of the 2010 census, the town population was 41,604 at the 2010 census. The Town of Lancaster has a village also called Lancaster. Both town and village are east of Buffalo.
The current Town Supervisor is Dino Fudoli.
In 1803, the Holland Land Company sold its first plot of land in the future town. The Town of Lancaster was formed from the Town of Clarence, New York in 1833. The town was named after Lancaster, Massachusetts, but the reason for applying this name is not known. Lancaster, however, was originally called Cayuga Creek. Later it incorporated and renamed itself to become what we now know as Lancaster.
Lancaster contains the oldest stone structure in Erie County, the Warren Hull House. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992. The town also contains the oldest wooden structure in Erie County, known as the Gipple cabin. The cabin is located on private land in Southwest corner of the intersection of Wehrle Dr. and Harris Hill Rd. The Lancaster District School No. 6 was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2008.
In 1857, part of the town was taken to form the Town of Elma.
Beginning in early 1990s, the town entered a period of rapid growth. In 2003, the town and village police departments merged. Additions to the middle school and the William Street School were finished in 2005.
Lancaster High School is the largest school in both school population and square feet in Erie County. With over 2,000 students, the building was expanded twice. First in 1970 and in 2000, a field house was added. In 2003, the high school opened up a new wing.
Some of the biggest events Lancaster has to offer are held in the Village of Lancaster. They are the Fourth of July Parade, and the Taste of Lancaster, a restaurant festival and charity fundraiser. The Lancaster/Depew high school football game is held in October. The game dates back to 1919.
The small town identity which Lancaster once held is now changing because of the rapid town growth, a rarity in a county and region that has seen rapid population decline.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 37.9 square miles (98.2 km²), of which 37.8 square miles (98.0 km²) is land and 0.1 square mile (0.2 km²) (0.16%) is water.
Lancasters' boundaries are, Wehrle Dr. in the North, Hall Rd. in the South, Transit Rd. in the West, and Townline Rd. in the East. The North town line is not fully bordered by Wehrle Dr., because after reaching Harris Hill Rd., Wehrle Dr. bends Northeast into the Town of Clarence. Similarly, The South town line is not fully bordered by Hall Rd., because it becomes a dead end West of Bowen Rd. At the other end, Hall Rd. ends at Ransom Rd., making a dogleg left turn to the north, becoming Ransom Rd. Therefore the Southern town line is not marked by a road, East of Ransom Rd., and West of the dead end beyond Bowen Rd.
Most of the western part of the town is built up, while the eastern part is not very built up at all. The reason for this is because of the villages of Lancaster and Depew are in the western part of the town, and also many subdivisions are in the western part of the town. The eastern part of the town has long roads with almost no subdivisions. The western part however contains many subdivisions because of the towns' rapid growth.
Many rural or somewhat rural areas still exist in Lancaster. The Hamlets of Bowmansville and Townline, areas along Genesee St. (New York State Route 33), The Southeastern part of the town, the Northeastern part of the town, and the North part of the town all still remain a somewhat rural character. Some farms still exist. The area immediately South of the village around Como Park and Aurora St./William St., are now very built up. Bowen Rd., in the South part of the town, serves as the divider between built up Lancaster, and the more rural Lancaster. The area North and East of the Village of Depew are also built up. Many subdivisions are being built North of Walden Ave., west of Cemetery Rd. Cemetery Rd., in the North part of the town, serves as the divider between the built up part of the town, and the more rural part of the town.
Many people would like Lancaster to keep its "small town" identity, however this is becoming impossible because of how many subdivisions are being built, and the rate that they are being built at.
The west town line is marked by New York State Route 78. The New York State Thruway (Interstate 90) crosses the northern part of the town. New York State Route 33, Genesee Street, crosses the town immediately south of the Thruway, and U.S. Route 20, Broadway, crosses the central part of the town.
Adjacent towns and areas 
As of the census of 2000, there were 39,019 people, 15,053 households, and 10,506 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,031.1 people per square mile (398.1/km²). There were 15,627 housing units at an average density of 413.0 per square mile (159.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.00% White, 0.81% Black or African American, 0.18% Native American, 0.39% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.12% from other races, and 0.50% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.67% of the population.
There were 15,053 households out of which 33.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.3% were married couples living together, 8.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.2% were non-families. 26.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.11.
In the town the population was spread out with 25.1% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 31.3% from 25 to 44, 22.8% from 45 to 64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 93.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.1 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $48,990, and the median income for a family was $59,712. Males had a median income of $41,501 versus $28,049 for females. The per capita income for the town was $21,723. About 2.5% of families and 3.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.6% of those under age 18 and 5.7% of those age 65 or over.
Communities, hamlets, and locations in the Town of Lancaster 
The town's biggest areas include the Village of Lancaster, half the Village of Depew, and the two largest hamlets, Town Line and Bowmansville. The town also contains other smaller communities and hamlets.
- Bowmansville – A large hamlet in the northwest corner of the town, located near Genesee Street (NY-33) between Harris Hill Rd. and Transit Rd. (NY-78). Ellicott Creek flows through the hamlet. The hamlet took its name from early settler Benjamin Bowman. The West Shore Railroad once passed through the hamlet, and had a station on Maple Dr.
- Town Line – A large hamlet at the intersection of Townline Rd. and Broadway (US-20) on Lancaster's eastern town line. It is a Census Designated Place, or CDP.
- Town Line Station – A location on Townline Rd., Lancaster's eastern town line; north of the Hamlet of Town Line. Located at the old Erie (now Norfolk Southern) Railroad crossing at Townline Rd.
- Dellwood – A location at the eastern town line, on Townline Rd., north of Town Line Station. Dellwood is located on the old D,L,and W Railroad bed. That abandoned railroad bed contains the Lancaster Heritage Trail, a bike path ending at Townline Rd. in Dellwood.
- East Lancaster – A location east of Lancaster Village and west of the Hamlet of Town Line; located on Broadway (US-20) between Bowen Rd. and Pavement Rd.
- Looneyville - A location at the intersection of Townline Rd. and Walden Ave., north of Dellwood.
- Wilhelm - A location at the intersection of Genesee St. (NY-33) and Gunnville Rd., east of Bowmansville.
Streams and waterways:
- Cayuga Creek – A stream flowing westward through the town and village; flowing through Como Lake Park.
- Ellicott Creek – A stream flowing westward through the northern part of the town, including the Hamlet of Bowmansville. Named after Joseph Ellicott.
- Little Buffalo Creek- a small creek breaking off of Cayuga Creek. The creek breaks off Cayuga Creek under the Bowen Rd. bridge.
- Scajaquada Creek- A small stream flowing through the Village of Depew and the Town of Lancaster.
- Plumb Bottom Creek- A small stream flowing from the Town of Lancaster into the Village of Lancaster, finally ending up at Cayuga Creek.
- Slate Bottom Creek- A small stream flowing through the southern part of the town.
- Como Lake Park– A county park in the southwest part of the town and in the village, south of US-20.
Villages: The Town of Lancaster contains two villages; its own Village of Lancaster, and the eastern part of the connecting Village of Depew. The Town of Cheektowaga contains the other half of Depew.
- Lancaster – The Village of Lancaster is in the western part of the town, located on US-20.
- Depew – The eastern part of the Village of Depew is in the western part of the town.
Parks and recreation 
The Town and Village of Lancaster contain the following parks:
Walden Pond Park, located on the corner of Walden Ave. and Ransom Rd. in the town. Contains baseball diamonds, volley ball courts, playgrounds, and a pond for fishing. The Lancaster-Depew Ponytails Softball League call this park their home.
Westwood Park, located between Pavement Rd. and Schwartz Rd. in the town. Contains playgrounds, baseball, softball, and soccer fields.
Como Lake Park, an Erie County park located in the Town and Village of Lancaster. Contains playgrounds, fields, trails, sledding hills, woods, bike paths, and shelters. Cayuga Creek flows through the park. Entrances in the town include the William St. entrance, and the Bowen Rd. entrance. Entrances in the village include a walkway entrance off Pardee Ave., and on on Como Park Blvd., adjacent from Quincey Ave.
Meadow Lea Park is a park located between Iroquois Ave. and Broezel Ave. in the town. The park includes a pool, a baseball field, and a playground.
The Bowmansville Fire Hall is home to a Town Parks and Recreation maintained softball field. The picnic shelter is a host for the summer recreation program.
Keysa Park is a village park located on Vandenburg Ave., that includes a pool, a playground, tennis courts, a football field, and a baseball field.
Mechanic Street Park is a small village park on Mechanic St. This park includes a playground, and tennis courts.
The Lancaster Heritage Trail is a bike trail located on the former D,L,& W railroad bed. The path runs for about 4 miles from the village line at Walter Winter Rd. to the town line at Townline Rd. The bike path passes by the Lancaster Swamps, and Willow Beach (now known as Lorall Lake).
Lorall Lake, or more widely know to Lancastrians as Willow Beach, is a former lake-beach known for its depth and clear water. The lake is located on Nichter Rd. in the town between Pavement Rd. and Cemetery Rd.
Historical buildings 
The Town of Lancaster contains several historical buildings, Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The buildings include the Warren Hull House, the Lancaster District School No. 6, and many of the Village of Lancaster's Multiple Property Submission properties, including the Bruce-Briggs Brick Block, Clark-Lester House, DePew Lodge No. 823, Free and Accepted Masons, US Post Office-Lancaster, Lancaster Municipal Building, Liebler-Rohl Gasoline Station, Miller-Mackey House, Dr. John J. Nowak House, Herman B. VanPeyma House, John Richardson House, Zuidema-Idsardi House and the John P. Sommers House. The twelve latter properties are located within the Village of Lancaster.
The town is home to Lancaster High School, four operating elementary schools; Como Park, Court Street, Hillview, John A. Sciole (which is actually located on the Cheektowaga side of the Village of Depew), and the former Central Avenue Elementary School. It also includes the William Street Intermediate School (4th, 5th and 6th grades), and the historic Lancaster Middle School (formerly named Aurora Middle School), which was the town's high school prior to the construction of the current one in 1953. They are all part of the Lancaster Central School District. There are also a number of private schools, including St. Mary's High School, St. Mary's on the Hill Elementary, and Our Lady of Pompeii Elementary.
The Lancaster Central School District is the largest school district in population, in Erie County with one high school. The district serves most of the town and village, including a large majority of the northern part of the Village of Depew, on both the Lancaster and Cheektowaga sides. The Depew Union Free School District serves most of the southern part of the Village of Depew, and almost none of the Town and/or Village of Lancaster.
Fire, Police and Emergency Medical Services 
The Town of Lancaster is served by four volunteer fire companies. The fire companies are the Bowmansville Volunteer Fire Association, Town Line Fire Department, Twin District Fire Company, and Millgrove Volunteer Fire Department. Bomansville has 2 fire stations, Town Line has 2 fire stations, Twin District and Millgrove each run out of 1 respective station. Two of the fire companies are located within their respective hamlets, Bowmansville and Town Line. All four town companies respond to all alarms of fire along with requests for EMS.
The Millgrove Fire Company is actually not located in the Town of Lancaster. Millgrove is a hamlet in the Town of Alden, but because the small hamlet of Millgrove is so close to the northeastern portion of the Town of Lancaster, the fire company serves a very small portion of the town.
The Lancaster Village Fire Department serves the Village of Lancaster, with two stations. The main station located in the Lancaster Municipal Building and the Northside Station Two on West Drullard Avenue. The LFD does not respond to EMS calls, except when requested for calls such as MVA's, lift assists, etc;
The Lancaster Police Department serves the public good for the Town & Village of Lancaster. Prior to the 21st Century, the town & village each had their own separate police departments. It was the first major consolidation in Western New York of law enforcement. The LPD operates with roughly 30 officers, which includes road patrol, bike team, school resource officer, Detective Bureau, and the police tactical team, the ERT (Emergency Response Team). The Lancaster Police Department operates out of the Lancaster Town Center, located at 525 Pavement Road. It was site of a former United States Army Nike Base, where the Police still operate out of the former administration building. Currently, a new Town Center/Police Building are being constructed at the site.
The Lancaster Volunteer Ambulance Corps responds to all requests for EMS in the Town & Village of Lancaster, along with the Village of Depew. Average yearly call volume is over 4,000 calls and increasing.
Notable residents 
- Journalist Dorothy Thompson was born in Lancaster.
- Former kickboxer Kevin Rosier lives in Lancaster.
- Former MLB pitcher Iron Davis
Major highways 
- Interstate 90 (New York State Thruway), runs East- West through the town, traveling from the Cheetowaga town line in the West, to the Clarence town line in the North. There is an exit to Transit Road (New York State Route 78) in Cheektowaga that also serves Lancaster.
- U.S. Route 20 (Transit Road, Broadway), North-South roadway that runs concurrently with NY 78 along Lancaster's West border with Cheektowaga, south of Depew. Route 20 then turns East onto Broadway. Route 20 is known as Broadway in the Town and Village of Lancaster
- New York State Route 78 (Transit Road), North-South roadway that provides the east border of Cheektowaga with Lancaster, north and south of Depew.
- New York State Route 33 (Genesee St.), East-West Route that runs from Transit Road New York State Route 78 to Townline Road where it enters the Town of Alden.
- New York State Route 952Q (Walden Ave.) An East-West highway through the Village and Town Lancaster. Walden Ave. is the longest non-parkway New York State Reference Route. Walden's reference route number is not signed, but still has reference markers, and is maintained by New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) as other signed routes are. Walden Ave. parallels the New York Central Railroad as it goes throughout the town and village.
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2010-07-09.
- "2011 Lancaster Village Special Events Series :". Lancaster Village, NY. Retrieved 2011-07-11.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Lancaster Information
- Official town website
- Lancaster information
- Lancaster history
- Lancaster Central School District
- Lancaster school information
- Map of Lancaster, NY in 1892
- ePodunk – Lancaster NY