Town of Fowler Historian
The Historian’s Office is located upstairs in the Fowler Town Hall. Historian Karen Simmons is in the office on Thursdays from 1-4PM or any time by appointment by calling (315) 287-4753 or the Town Clerk at (315) 287-0045.
There are scrapbooks with articles about people and happenings in and around Fowler, articles on the zinc and talc industries, and pictures of some of the students that attended Fowler Elementary School. Come browse and check it out.
If you are researching ancestors and/or working on your family genealogy, contact my office as I have some records on hand that may assist you in your search.
The Historian is presently working on the names of veterans who served in the Korean Conflict that resided in the Town of Fowler. If you know of anyone or have any information that would pertain to the Korean Conflict please contact me at the Historian Office.
The late Byron Gale donated the mining book “Collector’s Guide to the Balmat Mining District “to the Historian’s Office, which was co-authored by Fowler’s own William de Lorraine.
Connie Bishop, retired Town of Fowler historian, suggested that the Town purchase a sign to distinguish the Tri-County marker which is where St. Lawrence, Lewis, and Jefferson Counties meet. The Town board approved the purchase and a sign was designed. It is expected to be installed in the spring with a small ceremony to mark the occasion.
Fowler began in 1816, when it was formed from parts of the towns of Rossie and Russell, NY. It was named for Theodosius Fowler (1753–1841), a captain in the American Revolution and a local landowner. In 1827 part of Fowler was transferred to the Town of Edwards. Fowler lost more area to Pitcairn, New York in 1836. By 1870 the population of Fowler was 1,785.
The following passage is from Pages from the Sketch Book of a Town Historian: Fowler 1807-1957, compiled by Helen Scott Cunningham.
The early story of the Town of Fowler does not open solely with the usual pioneer picture of stern-faced men and nervous-eyed women with a few children and chickens, blankets and pots in a cumbersome wagon being dragged through trackless forests and unbridged streams to find a site where they could fell some trees and hew out a rude cabin.
Instead Fowler’s beginnings were marked by romance as well as adventure, wealth as well as a struggle for existence, a mansion alongside a shanty. The traditional ox-cart may have arrived too, as settlers from Vermont and the Mohawk valley trickled in seeking a home and livelihood in the abundant forests and from the rich soil of this newly opened land of Killarney.
This region, along with its neighboring towns, seems to have been a debatable ground between the Iroquois Confederacy and the Huron and Algonquian Nations of Canada and was probably never occupied for any considerable time by either. It was common hunting and fishing ground but extremely dangerous to either party for the two confederacies were ever at war with each other and bloody encounters were sure to follow should two rival hunting parties meet.
So when in the division of the Great Tract, so called, near the turn of the century, Killarney (or Township No. 7) fell to the share of Robert Gilchrist and Theodosius Fowler, the history of the Town of Fowler begins.