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Gilbert Creek in Gaines/Carlton will be dedicated on May 24

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 14 May 2014 at 12:00 am

File photo by Tom Rivers – A historical marker on Ridge Road, next to the Gaines Carlton Community Church, honors pioneer settler Elizabeth Gilbert.

GAINES – The federal government last month approved naming a creek that runs from Gaines to Carlton for a pioneer settler along Ridge Road.

Al Capurso has been working on the effort to name “Gilbert Creek” for more than a year, researching the issue and lining up the needed government support. He is planning a May 24 dedication of the creek at noon at the Gaines Carlton Community Church. There will be a reception with music and comments from local historians and dignitaries.

The creek begins from feeder sources south of Route 104 near Brown Road. It then marries Proctor Brook in Carlton, and then flows into the Oak Orchard River.

Early settlers liked to build log cabins close to a source of water. Mrs. Elizabeth Gilbert and her family chose the north side of Ridge Road, building their home where there was a rise in the land.

The cabin is long gone, but a historical marker notes the pioneering efforts from Mrs. Gilbert, one of the first settlers on the Ridge between Monroe and Niagara counties. Her husband died in 1808, leaving her to raise the children, and tame the nearby wilderness.

Capurso wanted to name the creek and recognize the pioneering efforts of Mrs. Gilbert.

Capurso said it meets three standards for naming a creek: The feature is currently unnamed; The stream has an independent and distinct source of flow; and it is historically significant.

The Bureau of Geographic Names last month approved naming the waterway “Gilbert Creek.”

Capurso is working on a wooden sign that will match the one for Proctor Brook. Capurso said the Gilbert Creek sign will blend in with Cobblestone Society Museum, which includes eight historic structures near the routes 98 and 104 intersection.