Utica, New York
The selectable maps and pictures within this page present facts related to Utica, New York. Utica is a city in the Mohawk Valley and the county seat of Oneida County, New York, United States. The population was 62,235 at the 2010 census, an increase of 2.6% from the 2000 census due largely to a large immigrant refugee influx.
Utica is located at the shallowest spot along the Mohawk River which made it the best place for fording across, and an Iroquois Indian crossroads and fording location made trade exceedingly easy for local merchants. With a shallow spot on the river that was already inhabited by trading partners, the location was ideal for a settlement.
Utica was first settled by Europeans in 1773, on the site of Fort Schuyler which was built in 1758. The fort was named Fort Schuyler after Col. Philip Schuyler, a hero of the French and Indian War. After the French and Indian War the fort was abandoned and then during the American Revolution the original settlement (Yunę́ʼnare·θ in Tuscarora) was destroyed by Tories and Native Americans. The settlement eventually became known as Old Fort Schuyler when a military fort in nearby Fort Stanwix in Rome, New York was renamed Fort Schuyler during the American Revolution and evolved into a village.
In 1794, a road was built to Albany, New York known as State Road. By 1797 the road was extended and completed to the Genesee River and the full road was known as it is now, Genesee Road. The creation of the Seneca Turnpike was the first significant factor in the growth and development of Utica, as this small settlement became the resting and relocating area on the Mohawk River for goods and people moving into Western New York and past the Great Lakes.
Moses Bagg, a blacksmith, built a small tavern near Old Fort Schuyler to accommodate weary travelers waiting for their horse's shoes to be repaired. After just a few years this small shanty tavern became a two story inn and pub known as Bagg's Hotel. The first bridge over the Mohawk River was erected in the summer of 1792 by a Long Island carpenter who had settled in Utica, Apollos Cooper, although local and regional architects that had seen the bridge were very skeptical to use it, and the bridge was soon destroyed in the spring floods.
The perhaps apocryphal account of Utica's naming suggests that around a dozen citizens of the Old Fort Schuyler settlement met at the Bagg's Tavern to discuss the name of the emerging village. Unable to settle on one particular name, Erastus Clark's entrant of "Utica" was drawn from several suggestions, and the village thereafter became associated with Utica, Tunisia, the ancient Carthaginian city.