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The Beginning of the Village of Celoron

Captain de Blainville Celoron, a chevalier (French noble) of the Order of St. Louis, was given the task of re-establishing France’s claim to the watershed of the Ohio River Valley, a claim originally made by another Frenchman, LaSalle.

In 1749, Celoron set sail from Canada with his force of 214 soldiers and 55 Indian allies, landing near present day Barcelona, N.Y.
He then pushed over the difficult portage to the head of Chautauqua Lake, where he arrived on July 22nd. On his arrival, he and his companions must have been impressed with the lovely and tranquil scene as it appeared on that summer day.

The next day he embarked. His fleet of bark canoes passed maple groves and the wild deer straying from the deep forest depths to sniff the cool breezes of the lake.
He passed the narrows of the lake and passed into the broad expanse of the lower lake, and encamped for the night upon the shore three miles above the outlet, a place which 150 years later would come to bear his name.

This new village was once known as Sammis Bay, named after an early settler Charles Wheeler Sammis, and was renamed after a second settler Joseph F. Burtis, who purchased the property.
The small settlement grew along the most southern bay of the lake, and in the mid-1870’s with the purchase by James Prendergast, a member of Jamestown’s founding family, became known as Prendergast Point. In 1896 the village was incorporated and named Village of Celoron. To this day, the bay to the west still retains the name Burtis Bay.