In any case, if you wish to start at the beginning and end up in what exists now, go this way:

If you're more interested in the history of the land and how it was divided over time into today's house lots, you can start here:

If you're interested in a particular person or group of people, you can start here:

Or if you prefer to start with a particular building and want to find out more about its history, go this way:

Copyright 2013 by Frances Dumas, Village of Penn Yan Historian

his is the start of a journey through history, from a backwoods tavern to a modern and thriving village.

It is the story of the flow and effects of time and peopleís activities on the land, and thus full of eddies and crosscurrents; the most important of them is change.

The traveler can set out on this journey in two different directions: from the past up to the present (for those interested in the history itself), or from the present back into the past (which may be the direction in which those interested in individual historic structures might choose). In a way, itís a circular journey, or can be, depending on the path. I always did like best the trails that looped back to the start.


This 1927 view of Main Street shows the entire length of the block south of Maiden Lane, on the west side. The buildings are mostly still there and as they were. The exceptions are 100 and 102 at the corner of Elm Street, and 120-122 right in the middle; both b locks were razed in the name of Urban Renewal. No. 124 was shortened much later from its original three-story height.

Below is a link to Penn Yan & How it Got That Way: the Book

  Index to book