Thanksgiving Day, 1875
Taking a glimpse of Thanksgiving in Geneseo 100 years ago, we learn that it was unusually cold, with temperatures hovering around zero. Church services were the order of the day. The Rev. J. Judson White of the Baptist Church took the pulpit of the First Presbyterian Church and preached to what was considered a "respectable" congregation. There was a jubilee celebrated at St. Mary's which started on Thursday morning and lasted until noon on Saturday with High Mass. Father Donnelly was assisted by priests from Dansville and Mt. Morris.
St. Michael's observed the day with regular morning services. The ladies of this parish outdid themselves – the chancel was adorned with fruits and leaves. On a stand in front of the reading desk was a large dish filled with fruit, a large evergreen wreath enclosed a cross hung in front of the pulpit, while on the sides were beautiful wreaths of autumn leaves. Sheriff Young, on this Thanksgiving Day, entertained "the company of his house" (the jail), at his own expense in a handsome manner, furnishing them with a dinner of turkey with all the usual accompaniments.
Among merchants in business in 1875 there were two harness makers, a flour and feed store, two carriage and wagon makers and several horse dealers. The croquet factory was in full swing, sending out shipments daily to all parts of the country. Major Henry V. Colt was in charge of the depot at the foot of Court Street, which served the Avon and Dansville branch of the Erie Railroad. Main Street had new sidewalks, and gas lights were spaced out along her entire length.