2 Main Street


The house at 2 Main Street was built in about 1858. A large machine shop and foundry, built in 1855 and located diagonally across the street, was flourishing and the demand for housing in the village was great. This neat small home was rented to various tenants until 1867, when it was purchased by Elisha and Adelia Bow. Mr. Bow was a horse dealer who conducted a livery stable nearby. After Mr. Bow's death in 1882 his widow sold the property to John Lynch. Mr. Lynch ran a saloon in the vicinity, considered by his neighbors to be of “rather low type.” Although he improved the house with the addition of the porch across the front, there was a distinct sigh of relief when he announced in 1889 that he was closing the saloon and selling his home. The machine shop by this time had ceased operations and residential housing had taken its place.

The next owner was Henry Clark, who was a farmer when the civil war erupted. He was drafted, and in the battle of Drury Bluff he lost both of his legs. He returned to his farm in Geneseo where the next years were difficult, as he tried to support his family with the pension he received. After his children were grown, he and Mrs. Clark sold their larger home and moved into the village to the house at 2 Main Street Here they spent the remaining years of their lives, where Mr. Clark and his cane became a familiar figure on the streets.

After Mr. Clark's death, the property was occupied for two years by the Sheriff, Platt Halsted. In 1911 it was sold to Ellis and Mertie Ballard. Ellis Ballard was a painter and decorator. He made such repairs as were needed and maintained the property with care. After his death in 1923, Mrs. Ballard sold the house to John Carpenter.