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A correction, new Grape Belt book, request for heirlooms plants

Buzzings from BeeLines

January 4, 2012
By Marybelle Beigh, Current Westfield Historian
Tap Room history updated by current proprietor

First, the Westfield History offers a big apology to Kate Noble, present owner-operator of The Tap Room at 43 East Main Street in Westfield, N.Y. Upon reading last week’s BeeLines about a brief history of The Tap Room, Noble immediately made contact to clarify that she has owned and run the establishment for the past 19 years, having obtained it from Betty Eppinger on July 1, 1993. Thank you Kate Noble for continuing and improving one of Westfield’s historic businesses and buildings.

New guide book available about Lake Erie grape region

The local history book area at 3 East Main Street, Westfield, N.Y., is pleased to announce copies of “Traversing America’s Grape Country” by Andy Dufresne are now available at Parkview Café, Soda Fountain and Gift Shop and office of the Westfield Historian.

A request for help to preserve heirloom grapes and apples

At about the same time as the new grape belt book arrived at the historian’s office, an email was received from Mike Engle, known to readers as “The Diner Historian.” But this time Engle requested assistance with another of his historic preservation projects.

“Besides my diners, I’m also getting into a little bit of trying to preserve some heirloom varieties of apples and grapes,” Engle wrote. “[Would you] be interested in doing a column asking residents if… 1) Anyone has a vine of Pocklington… a white grape, but is a ‘child’ of Concord… came out a few years earlier than Niagara… 1900 newspaper articles… that Chautauqua residents did grow a little Pocklington… County fair contests list someone as winning the best Pocklington grape… 2) Apples — Does anyone have a really old apple tree growing of a rare variety? Often, growing up, people would have their favorite apple tree of a different variety than known today.”

In a follow-up email, Engle names “a few western NY/Finger Lakes varieties, and places of origin… Stanard — Erie County… Bowkea — Western NY — From Western New York. Fruit, medium, roundish, flattened, angular, pale yellow, with crimson in sun, small, brown gray dots; stem, slender; cavity, medium; calyx, closed; flesh, whitish tender, mild sub-acid; ‘good.’ October. ((Western Fruit Book)); Bailey’s Sweet — Perry; Somerset — Somerset; Schuyler Sweet — Seneca Falls; Sherman — Wyoming Co.; Genesee Flower — Alexander, Genesee Co. There are many more, but these are ones I believe to be extinct unless someone is growing or knows where one is growing.”

Fact Box

Marybelle Beigh is the current Public Historian for the Town and Village of Westfield. Her office is located at 3 East Main Street in Westfield, N.Y, 14787 — inside Parkview Ice Cream Parlor. Her scheduled office hours are Monday through Friday 9 to 11 a.m.; other hours by appointment.
Beigh can be reached at or by calling 326-2457 (office), 326-6171 (home) or 397-9254 (cell).



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