The town was very large, and in the shape of an L, extending from the West Canada Creek on the north, down to the Mohawk River on the south, and from Schuyler on the east all the way to the Nine Mile Creek on the west. In the summer time, it was a sea of multicolored greens as the leaves of a million trees rustled in the western winds, providing a home to all kinds of birds, while on the ground below, a multitude of rabbits, deer and black bear wandered about. Scattered among this lush green carpet, especially near the Mohawk, were gaps, as if a giant hand had come along and plucked out the vegetation. But it was not a giant that had created these moth-like clearings in God's great carpet of green. It was, rather the first settlers who arrived in earnest in the 1790's. Such was the Town of Deerfield.
In the next twenty-five years the clearings increased especially about the end of Realles creek, where the land leveled out and a wagon trail had come into use, leading to old Fort Schuyler (Utica). A few hundred feet to the east was another trail where not many years before a group of settlers marched with musket inhand and fear in heart spurred on by their neighbor, Nicholas Herkimer, to historic destiny and Oriskany
The settlers were becoming more numerous now, and as always, they looked to the west and vast land recently vacated by the Indians. And so it was that families came to western Deerfield, where the soil was rich and the Nine Mile creek came tumbling into the Mohawk with what seemed to be an endless supply of fish.
The crops thrived, the farms prospered, and the lumber was there waiting for a sharp axe and a man with muscle. Life was good, and the main hardship was the long, all day trip to Deerfield Corners to get supplies, mail and news.
This annoyance was in time pacified by the opening of a post office on the western side of Snake Hill, as it was called. And during the dry season, a man and a good team of oxen could make the round trip to the corners in six or seven hours if he followed the trail.
By 1830, these western Deerfield settlers had had enough. People at The Corners looked upon them as being way out in the wilderness and the settlers felt like forgotten souls with no representation. A petition for seperation was circulated and submitted to the State Legislature. It took two years of lobbying but finally on March 30th 1832 the Legislature granted a charter for a new town. By mutual agreement the bottom of the L-shaped Deeffield was cut off by a dividing line going down to the Mohawk.
What to call this new township? The answer was to be found in the person then serving as Governor, William L. Marcy. He was a very popular man who had served as U.S. Senator, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, State Comptroller and had helped develop the new canal systems.
And so it was that our early settlers chose the Governor's name for our new town.
Happy Birthday Marcy on your 174th Anniversary!
Written by Historian Ray Ball