Naples, New York, founded in 1789, is located approximately four miles south of Canandaigua Lake. Although it is among the smallest communities in the state, this area (known as Grape Country) is one of the most treasured destinations in the Finger Lakes Region. Metro area:Rochester.Latitude:42.615N.Longitude:-77.402W.Time zone: Eastern Standard. Named after city in Italy (Napoli), built on the site of a Seneca village. Blessed with a unique geographic location and fertile land, the Naples area is an ideal spot to grow grapes – a tradition that was started in the 1840’s by a single land owner who planted 150 grape vines on a nearby hillside,called also Wine City.
Much of Naples’ esteemed past can be traced back to that historic event, as it was the beginning of a big industry.
During its early years, however, the Naples Valley was thought to be anything but a prosperous area. Once the site of an ancient Seneca Indian Nation named “Nundawao”, Naples was considered among the least desirable territories for sale due to its barren and mountainous territory. The first settlers purchased the land for a mere 12 cents per acre.
By the late 1820’s Naples had developed into a thriving community with churches, grist mills, saw mills, tanneries, hotels and other businesses. By 1860, the Naples Academy was built, and in 1872 the Naples Memorial Town Hall was erected to honour the more than 200 local men who had served in the Civil War.
In addition to these buildings, several other landmarks are on display throughout the Naples area, including the Morgan Hook and Ladder Company (listed on the National Register of Historic Places) and Grimes Glen (site of a celebrated archaeological find). Local attractions include the Bristol Valley Theatre and the Hi Tor Wildlife Management Area. Corporate business includes: Widmer’s Wine Cellars (wine manufacturer) and Lake Country Woodworkers (manufacturer of commercial wood office furnishings).