Salamanca, New York

Salamanca is a town in Cattaraugus County, New York. The name is from a major investor in a local railroad.  The City of Salamanca borders the town.

The area was first settled by European-Americans after the American Revolution around 1815. This was historically the territory of the Native American Wenrohronon, who were driven out by the Seneca Nation in the Beaver Wars of the 1650s. Many of the early arrivals were whites who settled on Native American land with the informal permission and toleration of the tribal members.

The area was a sparsely populated, rural, farming and lumber industry region until the arrival of four railroads. They made their hub at the community of Salamanca.

The Town of Salamanca was formed in 1854 from part of the Town of Little Valley. At that time it was called the "Town of Bucktooth," named after a notable Native American who lived in the area. In 1869, the Town of Red House was created, taking away the south part of the Town of Salamanca. In 1870 the community of Salamanca began to set itself off, first as a village, and later as a city.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 18.2 square miles, all of it land.

New York State Route 353 is a north-south highway in the town. The Southern Tier Expressway runs through the Seneca reservation in the middle of the town. New York State Route 417 closely parallels the Expressway.

 Salamanca is also a city, which is surrounded by the Town of Salamanca and lies on the Allegheny River. The city of Salamanca is the only U.S. city that was built on land leased from an Indian reservation. The lease from the Senecas is in effect until 2030.   However, contrary to local belief, it is not the only city in the U.S. that is built on an Indian Reservation.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.2 square miles, of which, 6.0 square miles of it is land and 0.2 square miles of it (3.69%) is water.

The City of Salamanca is located on a reservation of the Seneca Nation of Indians (one of the six tribes of the Iroquois Confederacy), and the city population of about 6000 is about 35% Native American.

The Southern Tier Expressway (Interstate 86 and New York State Route 17) passes south of the city, as does US Route 219 and New York State Route 417.

Once a major railroad town, Salamanca is a center for the hardwoods industry and forestry in the northeast.  Maple, oak and cherry are hardwoods that are plentiful in this area.

History

Salamanca was originally called "Hemlock," a name derived from the fact that there were numerous hemlock trees throughout the surrounding majestic mountains of the Mighty Ohi:yo'. In 1999, the past land leases for houses built on Indian land expired. Despite treaty agreements that declared all Seneca land as "free to buy," the Senecas have nonetheless declared all land bought on the reservation to not be owned by the purchaser, but leased from the Seneca nation. The previous leases had had only nominal payments. Many people living in the city did not agree on the amount of lease payments, and this caused bitterness, lawsuits, and appeals to government officials.   In the end, the new leases were put into effect, and sixteen households were seized and their owners evicted from their homes for refusing to sign the lease. The current lease is in effect until 2030.

Casino gambling

The Seneca Nation of Indians opened a gambling casino in Salamanca in May 2004. About 1,000 new jobs were created.  Significant change has not yet occurred in the city, with new construction in only a few select areas. Main Street and US Route 219 (which runs through the city) remains largely untouched with little to no renovation and is populated by cigarette, tobacco, coffee shops, gas stations and empty storefronts.

Communities and locations in the Town of Salamanca

·        Allegany Reservation – The Seneca reservation runs through the center of the town.

·        Allegheny River – The river runs through the center of the town and the Seneca reservation.

·        Allegany State Park – the largest State Park in New York State, lies immediately to the south, right in Salamanca’s back yard.  A small part of the park is in the south part of the town.

·        Bucktooth Run – A small stream that enters the Allegheny River west of Salamanca City.

·        Jimerson Town – A hamlet southwest of the City of Salamanca. It is the home of the Allegany Reservation's governmental headquarters.

·        Kill Buck – A hamlet east of Salamanca on Route 219, named after a chief of a local tribe.

·        Little Valley Creek – A stream flowing into the Allegheny River in Salamanca City.

·        Newton Run – A stream flowing into the Allegheny River east of Bucktooth Run.

·        Salamanca – Most of the City of Salamanca is inside the town lines (and also inside the Seneca reservation).

·        Shongo – A hamlet inside the Seneca reservation on NY-417 in the southwest part of the town.

·        Titus Run – A stream flowing into the Allegheny River from the south.   

Once a major railroad town, Salamanca is a center for the hardwoods industry and forestry in the northeast.  Maple, oak and cherry are hardwoods that are plentiful in the area.

Upcoming Events

Wildwood Sanitarium Ghost Hunt Salamanca NY
Fri, 07/19/2019 - 5:00pm - Sat, 07/20/2019 - 5:00am

The public is invited to join the "Haunted in New England" team as they investigate the paranormal elements of the Wildwood Sanitarium in Salamanca, NY.  Eric Perry, from the hit show Haunted Hospitals (Travel Channel), Elisabeth Angel, from Counting Cars (History Channel), author John Kuykendall from USA

LANCO at the Seneca Allegany Casino
Sat, 07/20/2019 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Breakout Country Band LANCO, with special guest Chase Bryant, take the stage at Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino on Saturday, July 20th at 7pm in the Seneca Allegany Events CenterExperience in person, the artistry that has ignited a meteoric rise to the top of the country music charts.  

Free Movie Tuesdays in Salamanca
Repeats every week on July, August every Tuesday until Tue Aug 20 2019 .
Tue, 07/23/2019 - 1:00pm - 3:30pm

Allegany State Park brings the Free Summer Movie Series to their campers, visitors and the surrounding area every Tuesday this July & August, 2019 starting at 1:00pm.

Places

Photo of the kitchenette in a cabin at Elkdale RV Resort

Elkdale RV Resort  has many amenities and spaces in which to relax besides your RV, Cabin or Cottage:  pool table, foosball table, free token operated slot machines, TV, fridge, microwave, laundry (coin operated), picnic pavilion for group gatherings, volleyball, horseshoe pit, sand box, catch & release fishing (private pond) to name a few. 

Photo of Patria - Fine Italian Cuisine

Located in the Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino.

Upscale ambiance, offering the freshest seafood, hearty pastas, and fine wines.

Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence

 

Photo of Spa and Salon at Seneca Allegany Casino

RENEW. REVIVE. RELAX.  The Spa and Salon at the Seneca Allegany Casino will have you looking your best with a new haircut, skin, nail, or body treatment and massages.  The spa is open seven days a week and offers many seasonal specials.  The salon is open Tuesdays through Sundays.

Videos

  • See some of the scenic views from the top of Salamanca at Bear Mountain Resort!  Video takes you through photos of the outdoor eating area and inside the restaurant. 
  • Video of Tucker Hibbert at the Seneca Allegany Events Center for the 2012-2013 AMSOIL Championship Snocross Series.
  • Some snowmobile video from of the FXR team (Cole Cottew and Bobby LePage) at the AMSOIL Championship Snocross Series 2012-2013 at the Seneca Allegany Casino from February 22-24, 2013.

Travel Guide

Enchanted Mountains of Cattaraugus County Travel Guide for 2019It'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

Top 10 site for Steelhead Fishing

Cattaraugus Creek has been listed in the top 10 sites for Steelhead Fishing (rainbow trout fishing) by 2 outdoor magazines. Steelhead Trout AKA Rainbow trout are very similar to Salmon in both taste and habits. Unlike other areas of the United States, our native Rainbow trout (Steelhead Trout) spend a majority of time in Lake Erie a freshwater lake and spawn in the Cattaraugus Creek and other tributaries.

The following is from the New York State Dept. of Environmental Conservation's article "Steelhead Fishing in Lake Erie Tributaries"

Lake Erie's tributary streams, both big and small, receive an annual run of migratory rainbow trout called "steelhead." From October through April, thousands of steelhead ascend New York's Lake Erie tributaries on their mission to spawn. Excellent fishing opportunities await any angler who wishes to try their hand at steelhead fishing. Between the acrobatic leaps, long drag-screaming runs and rod quaking head shakes, the fight of an early run steelhead is a truly exhilarating experience.

Read more about Steelhead/Rainbow fishing on the Cattaraugus Creek

Read more