14 Main Street


The original part of the house at 14 Main Street was built in the 1820’s by Chauncey Morse. In 1825, he sold it to James Bemis who enlarged it. He sold it to Joseph Bemont in 1836, and Ebenezer Leach, a tailor, purchased it in 1841. Ten years later, the house was sold to John White, a lawyer. William H. Kelsey purchased it in 1853. William Kelsey was one of the men responsible for bringing the Normal School to Geneseo. He died in 1879. Mrs. Kelsey continued to live here until her death in 1904 and for many years her nephew, the Honorable Otto Kelsey, lived here with her. She added a porch across the front of the house in 1884.

Otto Kelsey, who never married, held several important state offices. About 1895, he was elected a member of the Assembly. Appointed Deputy Comptroller by the Governor in 1902, he was elected Comptroller the following year. He inherited the house after Mrs. Kelsey's death. In the early 1930's, a Rochester architect was engaged to remodel and restore it. During the restoration, evidence was found to substantiate the early construction date.  Mr. Kelsey died in 1934, and in 1936 Dr. and Mrs. Gerald Manley purchased the house from the Kelsey estate.  After Dr. Manley's death, Mrs. Manley sold it to Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Kelly.