Olean, New York

Olean is a town in Cattaraugus County, New York. The name is derived from the Latin word "oleum" due to the discovery of crude oil in nearby Ischua.

The Town of Olean is in the southeast corner of the county. The City of Olean, originally the Village of Olean, is adjacent to the town.

Olean was first settled around 1805. The Town of Olean was established in 1808 as the only town in the county. The "Town of Ischua," (now Franklinville) was established in 1812, part of Perrysburg was removed in 1814, Great Valley was formed in 1818, Hinsdale in 1820, and Portville, in 1837.

The Village of Olean, was originally named "Hamilton," after Alexander Hamilton, but was called Olean Point until simplified to Olean in 1823.

The name "Olean" was suggested for the area due to the oil found in the vicinity. The famed Seneca Oil Spring, discovered by the Franciscan Missionary Joseph De La Roche D'Allion in 1627 was located about 14 miles upstream of Olean Point. The original town hall burned in 1884, prompting a law that forbade wooden structures in parts of the town.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 29.7 square miles, of which, 29.6 square miles of it is land and 0.1 square miles  of it (0.27%) is water

The City of Olean is a city within the Town of Olean in Cattaraugus County, New York. Olean is the largest city in Cattaraugus County, and serves as the financial, business and transportation center of the county. It is one of the principal cities of the Southern Tier region of New York.

The city is surrounded by the Town of Olean and is located in the southeastern part of the county.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.2 square miles, of which, 5.9 square miles of it is land and 0.2 square miles of it (3.73%) is water.

The city is located where Olean Creek flows into the Allegheny River and by the Southern Tier Expressway (Interstate 86 and New York State Route 17). New York State Route 417 passes east-west through the city and intersects New York State Route 16, a north-south highway.

Interesting facts:

  • Home to famous Rock City Park
  • The Olean Business Institute and a branch of Jamestown Community College are within the city
  • St. Bonaventure University is a few miles to the west in the Town of Allegany.
  • CUTCO national headquarters is based in Olean.
  • Dresser-Rand Group, Inc. North American headquarters was based in Olean.
  • Colonial Radio Group, which owns radio stations in the region and previously owned stations in the Carolinas, has been headquartered in Olean since 2009.
  • Part of the movie "Unstoppable" was filmed near a rail yard in Olean.

Upcoming Events

Thu, 06/17/2021 - 10:30am - 2:00pm

Join the fun at the Annual OGH Auxiliary Strawberry Festival (10:30 a.m - 4:00 p.m.) and Health Fair (10 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.)!  Featuring: strawberry shortcakes, sausage sandwiches, drinks, baked goods, craft items and entertainment!

Pavilion
Repeats every week until Thu Sep 09 2021 .
Thu, 06/17/2021 - 6:30pm - 8:30pm

The City of Olean Music Series is back!

Starting June 3rd, concerts will run from 6:30pm - 8:30pm every Thursday at Olean's Lincoln Park, with five Sunday's being added to the list too. Sunday concerts will be from 2:00pm - 4:00pm. 

• June 3, Not Norman (Oldies)

Lincoln Park
Repeats every 2 weeks until Sun Sep 05 2021 .
Sun, 06/20/2021 - 11:00am - 3:00pm

Local crafters and artisans selling their handmade goods, every other Sunday from 11:00 am - 3:00pm Beginning June 6th until September 5th in the pavilion at Lincoln Park in Olean. 

Baked goods, fiber arts, wood work, ceramics, and other crafts should be represented at the market. 

Places

front of ASK Design Jewelers

One-of-a-kind jewelry store dedicated to creating an extraordinary and timeless jewelry experience.

Above View of Lake Lane

Family owned and operated picturesque park located in Olean, NY.  Highlights include multiple fully stocked fishing ponds with various types of fish for incredible fishing and no fishing license is required.  Look for rates and specials for using just the fishing ponds for the day.  Perfect place to stay with the family for a great vacation. 

Photo of camo jackets at WhitetailCountry Sports World, Inc.

Whitetail Country Sports World offers sporting goods, hunting supplies, canoes, fishing equipment, archery equipment, rifles, ammo, fishing trips and more!

Videos

  • Provided by the Greater Olean Area Chamber of Commerce and Olean Business Development. 
  • Rock City Park has the largest outcropping of quartz conglomerate in the world! What a rockin' place!As you can see from this video, Rock City Park has beautiful fall colors and offers visitors a great short hiking experience.
  • Tasty tasty Beef on Weck at Beef 'n Barrel Restaurant in Olean, NY.

Travel Guide

Enchanted Mountains of Cattaraugus County Travel Guide for 2020It's a full 56-page comprehensive guide, highlighting the activities and attractions in our County and it's FREE!!

View the visitor's guide online

or

request that the Enchanted Mountains guide

be snail mailed to you for FREE!

NYAGT Geocaching Trails