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Then & Now

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Chautauqua County Historical Society - Member Activities - Chautauqua County - New York - USA

Horse Driving / Trotting Parks

Chautauqua County, New York, USA

In the 19th and early 20th century, driving parks provided a place for "city" horses to get a good run as well as a place for horse racing and training. Entrepreneurs of the day sometimes provided special lodging for those with business at the track. This image shows such a lodging place known as Bacon House. It was located at Balcoms Corners, Villanova Township, Chautauqua County, New York. (DeBeers 1881 Chautauqua County Atlas).

Driving Park Hotel

1200 East Second Street, Jamestown, New York, USA

driving park hotel
Here's another example of a special lodging location. This one was associated with a driving park that was near the Hope's Windows factory on Hopkins Avenue in Jamestown, NY. The Driving Park Hotel (see sign in upper right of image) stood where Hector's Cycle Sales is now on the southeast corner of E. Second and Hopkins Avenue. (Unused real photo postcard circa 1910).

Driving Park Article

1871 Jamestown Evening Journal

driving park article
This article indicates that racing at the driving park could be lucrative...

Driving Park Article

1889 Jamestown Evening Journal

driving park article
This article indicates that in 1889 the industry was growing...

Marvin Park Race Course

North of Isabella Avenue, Jamestown, New York, USA

engel postcards
Marvin Park mentioned in the article above, might have been a metal detector user's delight if not for the fact that over the years the area has been intermittently covered by mounds of scrap metal. This image is from the 1888 Atlas of Jamestown, New York by F.W. Beers.

Jamestown Trotting Park

400 Block of Baker Street, Jamestown, New York, USA

engel real photo postcard
This earlier Jamestown Trotting Course was on what is now Baker Street across from Bergman Park just up the hill from the current Persell School and Wilson Farms locations. It was an interesting surprise to find that this course was right where our house is now! This partial map of the Town of Ellicott is from the New Topographical Atlas of Chautauqua County, New York, WM. Stewart publisher 1867.

Member Page submitted by Bob Johnston.

from the McClurg Museum - Westfield, New York
©2007 - Chautauqua County Historical Society, Westfield, NY