Village Of Barker



Way back in 1815 David Barker came to this area and "took up land".  There were no houses between the lake and route 104 as there was no road at this  time.  The 100 acres that David Barker bought spread all the way from Coleman Rd to Haight Rd.  At this time Somerset Corners was the hub of activity.  In 1875 Mr Barker donated land from his farm for the railroad tracks.  In 1876 the first train whistle was heard.  With the convenience and services provided by the Iron Horse, business changed from Somerset Corners to Barker.  The railroad station which is now home to the Village Office and Library, was built soon after the arrival of the railroad.  Originally the depot was named Somerset Station but eventually it was changed to Barker.   


In 1878 Mr. Barker donated land and a school was built and a post office opened.  The brick school house is still standing and in use today, it is the rear section of Barker Truck Accessories on Quaker Rd.  Hiram Briggs lived across the road and a little south of the schoolhouse.  He became the first postmaster of Barker.  The Post Office was in his home and was a very busy place.  In recent years it served as a restaurant.


In 1881 an iron stake was driven to mark the corner of Quaker and Main Streets.  Another street was laid out in David Barker's apple orchard.  It was parallel to Quaker Road and bordered Aaron Coleman's farm.  It was named East Avenue.  Thus the village started to take shape.  It wasn't long before there was a dry goods store, tin shop, lumber yard, grain elevator, livery stable, farm implement business, saw mill, feed mill, hardware and general store.  A very busy community that answered many needs.  This was important as traveling by horse and buggy to Lewiston or Lockport to obtain supplies was very time consuming.  It wasn't until after the 1900's that horse-less carriages appeared on the scene.   


The first village leader was called president, the title of Mayor was not used until after 1930.  Perry Pallister was the first to have this title and Pallister Avenue is named after him.  In 1892 he built a large home on the corner of Church and Pallister Ave.  In 1982 this home was restored and opened as Pallister House Florist, the building is still standing today. 


The Village of Barker was incorporated January 2, 1908.  Although it is located almost in the center of the Town of Somerset it has its own identity.  Barker has its own local government.  Residents of the village elect a mayor and trustess.  Althought the Mayor and Town Supervisor work together on some issues, the Mayor does not have jurisdiction over town business, nor does the Supervisor have authority over village decsisions. 

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