57, 61, and 63 Main Street
In the early 20th century, the automobile was becoming important, and in cities and villages everywhere garages were beginning to replace livery stables and blacksmith shops.
James Conlon had just been appointed a representative of the Ford Motor Company, and it was he who erected this building in 1915 and named it the Genesee Valley Garage.
The original building on the site, a clapboard house, was moved to the south side of Bank Street. In 1922, Victor McDonald and Albert Wade became partners and purchased the business. A September 1962 edition of a local paper pictures the 40th anniversary of this firm, by this time managed by the late Mr. McDonald’s son, Robert.
The building has been successfully converted since the 1970’s to house a number of small businesses.
The original building at this site was purchased in 1909 by Frances Scoville. Here he operated the Geneseo Candy Kitchen. After his death in 1915, his step-son, Peter Bondi, reopened the Candy Kitchen, repainted it and added electric lights. In 1925, Peter Bondi replaced this old wooden building with a modern brick structure and in 1929-30 added a movie theatre which he called the “Palace Theatre.” This theatre saw two destructive fires, one in 1932 and another in 1936. In 1938, the Palace Theatre was remodeled into a four-lane bowling alley. Recently, Peter Bondi, Jr. made further repairs and interior alterations.
The second decade of the 20th century saw the construction of several new commercial buildings on Main Street. All are of new brick, and although they are fairly simple in style, each has its individual characteristics. One of these is the Odd Fellows (IOOF) Building. The IOOF (Big Tree Lodge No. 485) was instituted in Geneseo in 1880. When they erected this two-story edifice in 1914-15, the intention was to use the second floor for meetings and rent the space on the street level. This arrangement was a success from the start. Several different dry goods businesses made their home here during the next few years.