Along the Towpath

A Bit About Life on the Erie Canal in Middleport, New York

gcs original photo
gcs original photo

Located on the Erie Canal, Middleport’s history is tied to the historic waterway. When contracts for the western part of the canal were let in 1821, clearing of the present day Main Street began through much of what at that time was forest.

When canal traffic was in full swing, packet boats brought workers to Middleport’s factories, mills, and business establishments daily. The older residents of the Village can remember when a half-dozen or more barges at a time would be lined up to unload. The heavy “chug” of the engines often caused dishes to rattle a quarter-mile away.

Now the canal, Middleport’s second “Main Street,” is a haven for canal enthusiasts. They enjoy its scenic beauty, our public bath and shower facilities, electric and water hookups, picnic pavilion, and the generous expanse of green space along both sides of our canal banks.

Middleport’s very unique working lift bridge on Main Street in the Village has always been a popular attraction. The towpath on the north side of the canal is perfect for walkers, runners and bicyclists in the warm weather, and cross-country skiers in winter. Autumn offers stunning scenes of vibrant colors.

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