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The history of public libraries in Batavia begins shortly after the arrival of the first settlers in Genesee County in 1801. On the second Tuesday in November of 1804 a group of local citizens met at the home of Abel Rowe and formed the Batavia Library. Joseph Ellicott served as chairman of the group, with trustees Richard Smith Esquire, Dr. Reuben Town, Major William Rumsey, John Brennan and Nathaniel Coleman.
There has been an American Hotel on this site since about 1790. The first two were made of wood. The present day building was built in 1840. After two fires in the 1850’s, it was rebuilt in 1861 by Mr. Mosley.